The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3 Review: Ubermensch

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Is it any surprise that having the baby didn't do much to help Jamie and Leela get closer to one another?

If anything, we learned on The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3 that their son breathing outside the womb has driven Jamie even farther away from an ideal life in the suburbs.

It seems that Jamie's once-happy life is on its last breath.

Reconsidering a Family - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

Ambrose found out about the same time we did that Jamie was lying about not knowing about the grave. Of course, we had our suspicions, but now our inside view into Jamie's thoughts shows him watching Nick dig the hole while holding a length of hose.

That same length of hose was also seen in an old college photo of Jamie that his roommate took as evidence to get rid of him.

A Troubled Man - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

Yes, Jamie's past was on a similar trajectory as he's on now. At that time, he had just met Nick and was entirely wrapped up in him.

Now we know that even in death, Nick's hold over Jamie is immoveable.

In addition to Jamie's niggling thoughts that have him fixated with his hands, hearing the sounds of the shovel, and seeing Nick at times he definitely shouldn't, he's obsessed with death.

At every turn, Jamie is digging into his psyche and questioning others, not about the nature of life, but the end of it.

Jamie Explains - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

He feels that everything is futile because there is no way to know if death is the ultimate end or if there is something more. He's even regretting the birth of his son because he'll eventually have to traumatize the boy with the fact that he, his parents, and every living thing will die.

Jamie equated having a child with a game of kick the can. Did they bring another life in the road to give their own more meaning without having any substance they can pass onto their child who will also kick the can down the road when they have a child of their own who they also cannot comfort about the impending doom of death?

Jamie is not a man with whom I would want to raise a child. That could be why Leela has pulled Brian closer. Brian is her surrogate husband and the baby's surrogate father when Jamie isn't around.

With the dark veil Jamie's wearing, it's easy to imagine that Brian could wind up in a world of hurt if Jamie's fears get the worst of him.

A Child is Born - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

And haven't they already gotten the worst of him? When the only person he feels comfortable talking to is the detective investigating his friend's death, you know he's in trouble.

But Jamie also sees in Ambrose a bit of himself. Ambrose has had his own brushes with darkness, and while he likes to live quietly and far off the beaten path, he's also like a dog with a bone with his cases.

It's not a stretch to imagine that Ambrose has done things to remind himself he's alive. His sexual proclivities and steering clear of pain medication for his leg reminds me of one of my favorite songs.

Three Days Grace has a song called Pain. The gist of it is that if you can't have love, you'd rather feel pain because it's better than nothing at all. It erases the numbness of everyday life.

New Father - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

If you watch enough entertainment, you can imagine where the story with Jamie and Nick and that rubber hose are going, right? Now it looks like they bury each other alive to feel alive.

University boys reading Nietsche is probably what got them started, Jamie's old professor theorized.

The ubermensch creates his own morality. Nietzche contends that our modern ways have led us to lose our faith. God is dead. It's up to the ubermensch to forge new values to live by. It's a challenge, one that required will and discipline.


The Ubermensch Theory suggests that Nick saw himself as an "overman," who created his own rules and dominated Jamie, who was a willing follower. Nick's method of domination appears to have been pain.

That's pretty crazy stuff, but it makes sense. They were pushing each other to the edge to feel something. Inadequate in other areas, there was no shortage of pain. Look at what happened with Nick's hand! And adrenaline can mitigate pain. The more they push, the higher the adrenaline rush.

A Look of Concern - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

At the restaurant on The Sinner Season 3 Episode 1, Nick seemed to indicate that in his quest to find enlightenment, he reached the top only to realize that there was nothing left to achieve.

Is that what Jamie realized with the death of Nick? Even if it is, he's still not convinced that the end is the light, even if that enlightenment is nothing but darkness.

That much was clear when the doctor asked him if he was controlling his impulses to harm himself or others, and Jamie scoffed, asserting everyone would say yes until the moment it becomes no.

Jamie is feeling the weight of parenthood, that's for sure. He's caught in wanting to feel to the point of hurting himself or others but also an intense need to protect his son, especially from himself.

Staring Into His Child's Eyes - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

That's got to be a terrible feeling. His mind is going to the worst places imaginable, as was evidenced by Nick's nursery room visit in which the apparition folded the baby like he was nothing but trash.

That left Jamie reeling on the floor, internally begging for Leela to come and take his son out of his hands for he knew not what he might do to him.

Have you ever held a baby? You know the feeling when you have them in your hands, and you feel the weight there, this helpless, fragile thing. And you get this jolt of fear because you know you could drop him. You could just let him go, let him break on the floor. The possibility is right there. So close. And you feel this dread like there's some part of you that you can't control that will drop him just to relieve you, just to make it go away. You know that feeling, don't you? We all do. You should lock us all up.


If you've ever experienced those dark moments when doing something, then you know exactly what Jamie was talking about. I've done that on twisting roads. The closer I get to the edge, I imagine jerking the wheel and plunging over the edge. What if I ever get an impulse that's like a sneeze that cannot be contained? That's scary.

Jamie was experiencing something similar. He has an overwhelming fear about hurting his son that could end in hurting his son intentionally so that he won't have to worry about it any longer.

Jamie and the Baby - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

That's when you know you need to walk away. And it's also why Brian's safety is an issue. Without help, Jamie will hurt someone.

And that's what Ambrose fears. He spent a lot of time not only begging Sonya to reach into her mind for what could possibly have driven Jamie and Nick to her property but also reinforcing that property so that she'll be safe if Jamie decides to return to whatever he and Nick were up to that night.

If Jamie gets an itch he needs to scratch, none of that will matter.

Ambrose could have handled taking Jamie to the hospital much differently. By being proactive with security, he raised Jamie's alarm at a time Jamie needed to continue trusting him.

The Ultimate Side Eye - The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3

Now Jamie is in the wind. Will he hurt someone? Will he hurt himself?

Ambrose isn't letting go, and he expects to get an emergency warrant to track every move Jamie makes.

How long before Ambrose confides in Leela to warn her of the potential danger of her husband?

Flatliners had the same kind of obsession with death that Jamie has. Some of them made it out alive, and others died in their quest to see the other side.

What do you think is ahead for Jamie?

I'd love to hear from you!

Part 3 Review

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Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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The Sinner Season 3 Episode 3 Quotes

Sonya: Oh, you've been researching me.
Ambrose: I'm working a case.

So I don't get to have a moment because I'm white?