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Murder in the First review: Another day, another death

With only one more week to go, Murder in the First is still no closer to tying up loose ends after this episode.

Erich Blunt (Tom Felton) may have been exonerated in Cindy’s death, but after his sneering confession last week, we now know for sure that he’s guilty. As expected, Mulligan (Kathleen Robertson) and English (Taye Diggs) are having a hard time letting it go. The double jeopardy law means that they can no longer try him for Cindy’s murder, so they turn their attention back to the mysterious death of Kevin Neyers, Erich’s junkie biological father.

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English gets a lucky break when he re-interviews D-Hop, who comes clean about the fact that he and his friend lied about seeing Chris Walton at the scene of the crime. A little digging proves that Erich’s biological grandfather was the one who did the deed. Seems he blamed Neyers for dragging his daughter into a world of drugs, and once English came around asking questions, he got spooked and killed himself. Ballistics matches the gun he used for his suicide to the same gun that killed Neyers and presto, it’s all wrapped up in a neat little package. Chris is free to leave jail and the proof is in the suicide note.

Now all that’s left to do is prove that Erich paid his grandfather to pull the trigger.

In an admittedly not-great move, English can’t resist tipping Erich off that they’re onto him for Neyers’ murder. Great plan, English. Erich just wiggled out of taking the fall for a murder that he physically committed with his own two hands, with the help of super-aggressive attorney Warren Daniels (James Cromwell). Giving him a heads-up that the San Francisco Police Department still has him in their crosshairs made for a dramatic moment but an idiotic piece of police work. Now he’s got plenty of time to prepare a defense, and in this case, the evidence linking him to the crime is even more slippery than everything that tied him to Cindy.

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Erich’s not having the best luck as it is, and his temper’s at its peak. Ivana (Bess Rous) took umbrage at Erich insisting that he’d been acting as CEO of his company during the trial when everyone knew that she was the one keeping the home fires burning. She was angry enough to team up with nerdy Jeremy and leave to start their own company, prompting Erich to call her a “worthless whore” in front of a roomful of employees.

To Ivana’s credit, she just laughed in his face, which was the thing that finally put Ivana on our good side after weeks of pure, undiluted crazy. Although her pronouncement that “the news is all over the blogs” is another example of all these noted tech geniuses using incredibly dated and unspecific language, which always takes us out of the scene a little bit.

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And finally, English and Mulligan have been handed a new case, which we’re suspecting is our lead-in for next season. A Mrs. Ingalls, heiress to a cookie fortune and noted heroin addict, was found dead in her bathtub of an apparent heroin overdose, though our intrepid detectives suspect her husband of doing the deed.

Yet another naked blond woman killed in a sexually provocative pose. Well, if Murder in the First gets a second season, at least next year’s case won’t be straying too far from type.

Murder in the First airs Mondays on TNT at 10/9c.

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