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Two Takes: The Catch “The Cleaner” 

Two Takes: The Catch “The Cleaner”
Photo Credit: Bob D'Amico/ABC
Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

In the penultimate episode of the second season of ABC’s The Catch, everything starts pointing towards a mysterious person known as Mockingbird.

Margot’s main mission in “The Cleaner” was to figure out who Felicity was working for now that she’s returned from the “dead.” This meant tracking down the guy who cleaned up after Kensington’s dead bodies by liquefying the remains. Gross. Ultimately, the Margot element of the Margot/Tessa/Rhys/Team VAlice contingent followed the yellow brick road right to Mockingbird.

Meanwhile, Ben tried to do his best to undermine Ethan by trying to find out proof he’s a bad guy. It didn’t work out that way. Sure, Ethan’s been downright shady, but like Ben, he’s put (most of) that shadiness behind him. Turns out someone else was taking advantage of Ethan right under his nose. And it was all engineered by Mockingbird.

Two cases. One Mockingbird. His identity needs to be discovered sooner rather than later because now it’s starting to get real. Felicity shot Sophie and kidnapped Tessa. Margot met up with Mr. Mockingbird and it’s none other than Alice’s brother Tommy. Dun. Dun. DUN.

Tina: Tommy, Cortney. TOMMY. The big bad of this season might really be Tommy. I figured we weren’t done with Alice’s brother just yet. Honestly, I wish I hadn’t been a little bit spoiled to this development. No, I didn’t accidentally read about it on Twitter or any other social media platform. It all started with logic and deduction.

Photo Credit: Kelsey McNeal/ABC

Okay maybe I’m exaggerating. But I really wish the show hadn’t included T.R. Knight’s name in the credits at the beginning of the episode because once I saw it, I looked for him. And when Tommy didn’t materialize all hourlong, I knew he was going to be Mockingbird. It kind of ruined the surprise for me.

I thoroughly enjoyed everything up to that point, however. What did you think about the big reveal?

Cortney: Oh shoot! I was fortunate enough not to be credit-spoiled so the reveal came as a TOTAL shock to me! Although, like you, I was pretty sure we weren’t done with him. But as we discussed back when he first appeared, there were lots of hints that the whole “bumbling fool act” was truly just an act and something more sinister and sneaky was lurking underneath.

Honestly, I kind of love this twist. But also hate it too. I love it because it’s going to bring everyone together and there are so many various elements at play, including that Margot has NO IDEA that Tommy is Alice’s brother.

On the other hand, I feel like Alice has been tricked and betrayed enough — can’t the girl catch a break?! And ultimately, she tends to give everyone the benefit of the doubt and follow her heart….but I’m not so sure she’ll be able to turn a blind eye here. I have a feeling Tommy has been masterminding this for longer than we can imagine and the betrayal on this is going to be thick — something I’m both eager and nervous to see play out.

Once again, I do have to say that I loved the switch-up of teams here — Alice/Rhys, Tessa/Rhys, Danny/Margot/Tessa, and yes, even Ethan and Ben.

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

But before we get to each of them, we have to discuss the other shocker this episode — Sophie. She can’t really die, can she?!

Tina: I thought she may have died right away while still in the hotel room, but now that she’s actually in the hospital, I think she’ll live. Thankfully Danny got to her when he did.

As for your other point, I’m in total agreement. I was pretty much giddy over the mixing up of the teams/pairs/cohorts, whatever you want to label them. I’m going to start with Rhys and Tessa because Cortney, we’ve been waiting for this moment and it didn’t disappoint. I was dying to know how uncle and brat…I mean niece were going to react to each other.

I knew they would get along fabulously. Their meet cute was more like meet violent. But the familial/criminal chemistry between the two were on point. Tessa immediately wants Rhys to train her. Although considering all the Rhys analysis going on in this episode, I’m sure Ben wouldn’t want his friend anywhere near his daughter anytime soon.

Oh and Rhys also met Valerie. I felt spoiled in this episode. Rhys needs to get himself over to AVI more often.

Cortney: I agree! Everything was coming up Rhys in this episode and I loved it. Well, I loved most of it….I’m guessing you know which scene had me less than thrilled, but before I get to the bad and the ugly, let’s start with the good.

As you mentioned, we finally got the Tessa/Rhys meeting we’ve been waiting for and I feel like they are two peas in a pod. How they met (with Tessa used as a hostage shield in the Rhys/Felicity face-off) was so apropos. Not to mention Tessa’s claim that Rhys should’ve shot her in the shoulder to get Felicity. These two are meant to be and I can only imagine the magic that will come from Rhys training her. Not that I could imagine either Margot or Ben allowing it…but then again, since when do either Rhys or Tessa listen to Margot or Ben?! Hopefully that’ll be the case this time as well since I’m definitely ready to see these two in the field together.

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

My next pairing that I genuinely loved, even more than I expected, were Rhys and Val. These two are both strong and sassy and when you put them together, it was like watching a fun, fascinating ping-pong match.

Val: I hate to say it but the sooner we find The Cleaner, the sooner we can be done with Margot Bishop….
Rhys: I like her
Val: …and her brother.
Rhys: I take that back.
Alice: If you try to kill Felicity on my watch, I will shoot you.
Rhys: You won’t, you’re too good.
Val: I’m not.
Rhys: I believe you.

I loved this interaction so much not only for what was said but also for the charmingly adorable and giddy laugh Rhys did at the end. Rhys likes a challenge and Alice and Val are definitely that.

Before we get to the scene I didn’t like, how did you feel about Alice and faux-dead Rhys taking on The Cleaner together?

Tina: Do we have to talk about Alice and Rhys right now?

Don’t get me wrong, I love scenes between these two. Actually I adore their interactions. They are so much fun but they’re almost always laced with an edge. They work fairly well together. Just when you think he’s the bad cop, she ends up being the bad(asser) cop. Love how those two dealt with The Cleaner.

Their dynamic is fascinating to me. She likes him despite knowing Rhys is a bad guy and a bad influence on Ben. He likes her despite his being jealous of the Ben/Alice connection. But they truly will never admit how much they like each other because she has morals and to be on board with someone like Rhys goes against every fiber of her being. In her mind, Ben is nothing like Rhys. In Rhys’ mind, Ben is everything like him.

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

This is where things got interesting, in my opinion. Rhys actually tells Alice that Ben is just like him but he hides it better. Alice does not need this bit of information in her life. Information that is not necessarily true. Or at the very least not necessarily ALL true. I see a difference between Rhys and Ben. Don’t you? Ben might be hiding some destructive tendencies but not to the extent that Rhys so thoroughly enjoys showing his to everyone who wants to see it.

Rhys also spills some juicy tea about Alice’s beau. That he asked Rhys to break into Ethan’s office. Rhys sure knows how to toxic up a situation, doesn’t he?

But of course I don’t want to talk about Alice and Rhys just yet because I want to find out what scene you didn’t like.

Cortney: Funny you should ask since we actually are talking about it already!

Tina: I had a feeling!

Cortney: It was the “Ben’s just like me” scene that really got my goat. This was info Alice didn’t need and like you said, felt heavily exaggerated (or misrepresented) to further Rhys’ endgame (whatever that may be). I can’t believe he said those things because he cares for and is concerned for Alice’s well-being. Nor is he doing it to help his dear friend Ben. It just felt sh*tty all around. So we can analyze further, let’s revisit how exactly this conversation went down.

Rhys: I think working for my sister has made you rather cynical.
Alice: So, if we find Felicity, you’re not going to try and kill her?
Rhys: Try?
Alice: So why waste time playing good cop? I know why Ben’s doing it, but what’s your endgame?
Rhys: Well, if I told you I didn’t have one, you wouldn’t believe me. But if I had one, why on earth would I tell you.
Alice: It’s such a shame. I’d love to like you.
Rhys: You do like me. That’s hte problem. Ben loves me.
Alice: So why can’t you be more like Ben?
Rhys: Oh, because he’s “good” now? Is that what you think. Let me tell you something, Ben is exactly like me. He’s just better at hiding it.
Alice: Before, maybe.
Rhys: Before when? This morning when he asked me to break into your ex-fiancee’s office?
Alice: He asked you to break into Ethan’s office?
Rhys: Because a tiger cannot change his stripes and you my dear fell in love with a tiger.

I honestly felt like these two were working so well together and having such a good heart-to-heart, then bam! Why why why why??? It it just because he fears if Ben is with Alice, he will lose him? Or is there something more to it? Is he just trying to cause trouble for entertainment sake?? Not to mention, if Ben ever found out that Rhys had told Alice this, he’d be pissed! So again, I ask, why why why??? It felt like an old-Rhys move to me and makes me remember why I like new-Rhys so much better. I know a tiger (Rhys in my analogy, not Ben) can’t change his stripes, but I still wanted to believe he was better.

And like you, I don’t believe that Ben is the same as Rhys. Nor that he hasn’t changed. I think Alice has changed him and he would do anything for her. Which is exactly what he was doing with Ethan, looking out for Alice. Of course, we’ll get to that more later, but back to my question about Rhys — why why why????

Tina: I feel like I answered that a little bit. Well maybe not answered it because I have no idea what the writers are thinking when they make complex characters do complex things. I do think Rhys is very territorial when it comes to Ben. I think he imagines himself going off with Alice and Ben once they get their happily ever after in a far off land that they’ve talked about having.

Is Rhys in love with Ben? After all, the man does go both ways. I’m not sure. But he’s emotionally attached to Ben and from someone that claims to not care about anything, that’s huge. And he will probably do anything to not lose that attachment. I mean, he’s actually playing this whole criminal informant for the FBI thing out. He knows he has no business doing and being this. This is Ben’s thing. But he’s doing it because of Ben.

I actually never thought about Rhys possibly being in love with Ben until I started writing out my answer. It’s true. I thought he was simply emotionally invested and attached to Ben but maybe it’s something more. Who knows.

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

Speaking of Ben, I like that he ended up having to turn to Justine to help him out with his Ethan problem. Peter Krause and Gina Torres scenes for the mother-effing win. It’s refreshing to be able to like a pair in scenes without having all that shipping baggage. I don’t need or want these two together romantically (I’m more of a Rhys/Justine fan myself), but I seriously enjoy when these two powerhouses act together. Ben wants to get the goods on Ethan and he needs Justine’s FBI help. I liked their conversation when he initially enlisted her for this mission:

Justine: You want me to arrest your girlfriend’s ex-boyfriend?
Ben: I know what it sounds like.
Justine: This is so refreshingly human of you.
Ben: I’m not jealous.

Oh and there was this quick but completely awesome exchange once again focusing on Ethan:

Ben: He’s not a good guy.
Justine: He’s an extremely good-looking guy.

Justine is so right about Ethan. And Ben is jealous! Ben thinks jealousy’s an emotion that’s beneath him but it’s so not. Too bad for Ben the case turned out to be something different. Ethan’s being conned again but this time by someone inside the commercial development department of his business (and then ultimately by a puppetmaster named Mockingbird).

Thoughts on Ben/Justine going after Ethan?

Cortney: As you could probably guess, I loved it! And yes, we all know how good looking Ethan is, even Ben…which probably only adds to the jealousy. That being said, I kind of like that Ethan ended up being on the up-and-up. More than I suspected I would. Something about knowing Ethan was being played (especially by Mockingbird) and Ben helped get to the bottom of it made Ben’s questionable motives feel a bit more noble.

And, to be honest, I actually enjoyed Ben, Justine and Ethan being in the field together as they sweated out Ethan’s employee to get all the info on her shady “property.” The fact that Tommy is behind it all, well, that was just icing on the cake. And something we’ll discuss more in just a minute.

But back to Ethan and Ben, and inevitably Alice. While I definitely expected the who’s-gonna-outcon-the-con game to last longer than it did, I’m actually okay with these two coming to terms with one another and recognizing that they’re both good guys. Ethan misjudged Ben. Ben misjudged Ethan. Hatchet buried. That being said, Alice’s surprise entrance into the middle of the handshake nearly derailed it all as she chased after Ethan (which I’ll admit felt a bit rushed and a bit too true-lovey to me….after all, Ben IS her fiancee) and he admitted that he still loved her. Yes, this is something we all knew, but apparently it was news to Alice.

I do like that Ethan admitted that Ben is a good guy and he SEEMED to be backing down from the fight…but now that Alice knows his feelings, will that change things? I’d like to think not but that look on her face makes me wonder. I couldn’t tell if it was a “you’re right, my fiancee is a good guy and he was right that you’re still in love with me” look or a “oh wow, you still love me and the fact that I just walked out on my fiancee to chase you on to the patio means I may still have feelings for you too” look. I’m leaning towards the first, but curious to hear your thoughts.

Tina: To me it seems like she’s not completely over Ethan so I unfortunately have to go with your second option (don’t kill me!). She seemed affected by his confession. But I can never trust my gut instincts when it comes to this show (I think I’ve stated this fact before).

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

I think Mireille Enos does a good job of keeping us in the dark about Alice’s motivations. It looks like she’s going to go one way and then the opposite happens. So I’m at a loss. I feel like she can’t quite shake her feelings for Ethan, though. That relationship ended messy and there are unresolved issues that will probably be just as messy to resolve. Ask me again next week. I’ll probably think something completely different.

We haven’t really talked much about Margot yet and we need to if we want to circle back to Mockingbird. She had a plan to keep her lovenemy (lover/enemy) close so she could figure out what Felicity was up to and who she was working for. But, of course, Rhys effectively killed that plan. So she comes up with another scheme that involves Tessa and Danny and henchmen who shoot guns at them.

Photo Credit: Bob D’Amico/ABC

Now before this mission, Margot and Danny decided they are in fact dating, which is cute but also freakin’ crazy considering Margot is a murderer and Danny just seems super innocent and puppy-like every time he’s in her vicinity. On paper they don’t work, but I don’t care. I like them anyway.

While they’re on their mission, Margot actually tries to send Tessa and Danny to safety saying she’ll handle this. When he doesn’t agree, she even fires him. In the end, she needs both Tessa and Danny to get out of the situation. Danny gets his hands dirty when he has to shoot one of the henchmen.

Cortney, is Danny stupid for sticking with Margot? I mean, Tessa even seems to like him and starts calling him stepdad. And will that change now that Sophie’s shot and his secret relationship is out in the open?

Cortney: Good questions! I have to believe that if anything would bring Danny’s feelings for Sophie back to the forefront, it would have to be her near-death. Either that or he will punish himself for it somehow, which we’ve already seen a glimpse of in the hospital. I feel like their relationship went from almost-happening to non-existent and I have trouble believing that it won’t be revisited somehow, someway at some point.

As far as Margot, I have yet to decide exactly how stupid his decision is. Like you, I definitely see the connection and she can be charming as hell, but then again, I also know that she’s a MURDERER! But murderers need love too, no? I mean, the fact that Ben once liked her says to me that there has to be some good in her. And I can see why she likes Danny — he finally shed that somewhat annoying puppy-like demeanor and ignored her directive only to save the day, how can that not make you swoon?! Especially when you’re a power-magnet like Margot. And I even like that Tessa is starting to accept him, although part of me thinks it’s more just to get his goat, which we’ve seen that she tends to do with anyone any chance she has, including poor Sophie before she came face to face with the barrel of a gun.

That being said, the episode ended with Tessa kidnapped, Sophie in the hospital and Margot meeting the elusive (and clearly dangerous) Mockingbird aka Tommy, who is none too happy with her recent acquisition of his drugs….quite a build up for a finale, no?! If this show doesn’t get another season, I’m gonna….well, I don’t know exactly what I’m gonna do but let’s just say it’ll probably be something a little Rhys-ish, a little Margot-esque and maybe even involve a little Alice bad-assery.

The season two finale of The Catch airs Thursday May 11 at 10/9c on ABC.

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  1. Heather M

    I may be biased (shocking) but I’m going to say I detected the slightest little knee buckle and lean in when Ethan told Alice he was still in love with her.

    1. Tina Charles

      I’m with you. She was affected.

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