The mystery behind the serial killer thickened on "Maria of the Desert," as lives continued to be threatened... and lost.
Previously, I wondered if the killer was actually a murderer or if he perhaps was just the mastermind. I posited that he could have others do the killing or be using already dead people to try and make his point. After the deadly resolution of the ransom drop, it appears with little doubt that he is both the mastermind and a killer.
Were we supposed to really believe the Feds are so numb-brained to look at the ransom demand as that of a normal hostage situation? That bothered me a bit. Every clue pointed to the killer being motivated more by the message than the money as both Sonya and Frye believe. Even his monetary demand was driven by a message. He wanted four rich men to fork over money to save the Mexican, Maria. And, as he clearly expected the wealthy men declined to give money to save her life.
It was another example of the divide between Mexico and the United States and the value that's placed on the lives of each country's residents. Who ended up providing the ransom money? A Mexican cartel leader. His motivation was income driven, but he also seemed concerned about Maria. He didn't want one of his people to suffer and die. Marco reluctantly complied and took the money to the Feds to use in the exchange.
As the killer has demonstrated previously, he's always steps ahead of law enforcement. On the surface, it seemed to be too much of a plot convenience that Agent Gedman was the one to handle the ransom drop and he also had interactions with Christina Flores (the dead Mexican on the bridge). I hope that the connection between the two events is better explained and that there was a reason the killer knew that Gedman would make the drop.
Since the show is centered around the premise of a mysterious, unknown killer who wears boots, it's important that his actions and outcomes don't tread near omnipotent. His plans have been nearly flawless, he killed and beheaded Gedman extremely fast, and been able to quickly take advantage of happenstance to send a message.
His placement and live stream of Maria in the desert could have been a mistake, but it's more likely he purposefully left her there to provide a clue to her location and Sonya picked up on it in time to save her life. Maria's death itself wasn't the point of this portion of his plan. And, why did he spare Marco's life? Killing a Mexican cop wasn't part of his plan, perhaps? Or does he have a connection to Marco?
Just as Sonya (and Frye) has a sense of the killer and his motivations, her belief that Steven was innocent seems to be accurate. At the same time, it's possible that he's being played by the killer. He saved a snake and Eva. He gave a previous victim a bandage. He's different, but dangerous? Doubtful.
The Charlotte storyline continued to intersect with the main plot through Marco's wallet (how did he not know it was gone?) and the tunnel. Will the tunnel end up playing a key role in capturing the killer? Could he have been using it to cross back and forth?
In this episode, Senor Galvan used it to get into the US to give Marco the money. Charlotte's discomfort over the tunnel will become annoying if it continues as it has. She needs to own her decision and either embrace it or shut it down regardless of the consequences.
Do you think we've seen the killer beyond just his boots? Is it someone we have met? Do you enjoy the mystery behind the killer?