On Only Murders In the Building Season 1 Episode 5, we are finally out of the Arconia and on the road!
Charles and Oliver spy Mabel with tie-dye guy and decide to tail her in Oliver's unfortunate clunker, Aphrodite.
There's plenty to unpack, so let's dive -- or drive -- in!
Called it! The tie-dye guy is none other than Oscar Suarez! At this point, though, he seems much more benign than originally suspected.
Even though he's been in prison for ten years, Mabel still greets him with fearless, open arms (once she puts away her knitting needle).
The chemistry between them is palpable. There is definitely something going on between them. All I can say is find someone who looks at you the way Mabel looks at Oscar!
The voiceover from Oscar was a nice touch, too.
Will we be getting voiceovers from a new character each episode? We've already heard from Charles, Oliver, Mabel, Cinda, Oscar -- who will be sharing their personal thoughts with us next?
It's a clever way to show us the perspectives of the many players in this mystery. It makes us connect with the characters as our own personal confidantes, an experience not unlike listening to a podcast.
Though we do eventually get some answers here, this episode is focused mostly on relationships and character-building.
Oscar (Aaron Dominguez) brings a new dynamic to the show. His energy is completely different from that of Charles and Oliver or anyone at the Arconia.
Oscar pulls out a different side of Mabel that we haven't really seen before now. With him, she is warm and caring. She still retains her smart-aleck, no-nonsense attitude, but she seems so much more relaxed.
We get to see Mabel's playful "Hardy Boys" side at the gas station as she teases Oscar. There's an intimacy there that only old friends can have.
So, what has Mabel been doing for these last ten years?
First, Zoe died, then Oscar presumably went to jail for his part in Zoe's death. Mabel and Tim clearly fell out because of Tim's silence, but there was still a history. She cared enough about him that his betrayal and death left an indelible mark.
No wonder Mabel is so ecstatic to see Oscar. He understands her like no one else. He is her closest living friend, and maybe more? Maybe now that he is free, they can be.
Mabel is clearly touched when Oscar shows up at the tattoo parlor. Perhaps now, with the four of them, they can truly be the Hardy Boys 2.0.
Maybe she's hoping that by solving Tim's murder, she can understand what happened to Zoe.
This episode gives us a whole lot of back-and-forth between Martin Short and Steve Martin.
It feels like the actors really got a chance to play here -- I'm not convinced the whole "Long Island" bit wasn't improvised. Perhaps this is just a testament to how well these two old buddy comedians work together, riffing ridiculous one-liners and coming up with a song to boot!
It was funny, but it definitely felt more like the actors rather than the characters.
Oliver's throwaway lines continue to be my favorite part of the show. Whatever the occasion, he's always got a celebrity name to drop.
Oliver: She's got those crazy killer eyes, like Liza at three in the morning.
Charles: Please don't tell that story again.
Oliver seems to relish that Mabel could be the killer -- he thinks it could make a great plot twist for the podcast. Charles has too much faith in Mabel to even consider this a possibility, but you can tell Oliver is getting into his head from the backseat.
Why does Charles believe so much in Mabel's inherent goodness? Is it simply because she acts as a buffer between him and Oliver, or is there more?
Charles's fixation on Mabel's goodness starts to get uncomfortable by the time he and Oliver finally confront her. Something about his attitude towards her -- his feeling of entitlement to her personal secrets -- just doesn't sit right. Ever Oliver is embarrassed, and that's saying something.
How was the chillin' in Washington Square Park? Was it, like, so chill? Did you chill it up so hard?Charles
If he was meant to come off as sympathetic, it didn't read that way. Be better, Charles.
The diversion with Jacob Ming-Trent and Roy Wood Jr. as the "horticultural homies" was fun. It gave Charles and Oliver some well-need perspective about Mabel's motivations and a reality-check about their podcasting aspirations.
Vaughan: Just because things aren't what they seem doesn't mean she's a bad person. Maybe she just doesn't trust y'all yet.
Lucian: Or she's mistletoe, which is actually a toxic parasite. The very plant that encourages us to kiss at holiday time can actually kill the tree it hangs on. Little do you know, all that romance is happening under a tree assassin.
Tavo's revelation clarifies two things -- that Tim's death was almost certainly murder and that Tim suspected it was coming.
Though Mabel's initial guess about the jewelry was slightly off, it could still yield some clues. Why was Tim involved in the black-market jewelry scene in the first place? He had a well-paying job, but the bills were piling up -- perhaps his job was in jeopardy due to his misstep with Sting?
As Charles-Haden Savage's famous "Brazzos" catchphrase goes -- "This sends the investigation in a whole new direction."
I still think Oscar is hiding something, despite his charming demeanor and repartee with Mabel. He's already been caught in a lie, and he likely has some information about Tim -- and Zoe -- that he's not divulging just yet.
It doesn't look like he's going anywhere, though, so Oliver and Charles will just have to accept that he's part and parcel with Mabel now.
His unique perspective and insight may just help crack the case.
Just because you aren't locked up doesn't mean you aren't still in some kind of prison.Oscar
Episode 5 definitely feels like a turning point -- how fitting that most of it took place driving in cars!
What do you think of Oscar and Mabel's reunion?
Are you feeling the love?
Share your thoughts in the comments!
Mary Littlejohn is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.