Last week’s episode of Perry Mason got the trio back together and gave us some new suspects in this season’s Brooks McCutcheon case.
Episode 3 of season 2 brought in some more advancements linked to the murder as well as a glimpse into our characters’ personal lives.
Perry convinces the Judge to give him more time to prepare for the Gallardo brothers’ case, which leads to the addition of a new character to the story.
He comes clean to Della about what happened to Emily Dodson and a shocking revelation by Paul Drake seems like it will put the brothers’ entire defense in jeopardy.
1. What happens in Episode 3?
Season 2 episode 3 starts with a scene of Detective Gene Holcomb’s family life. He has a wife and two children and they are currently looking for a house to buy because they want to move out of Los Angeles. It seems like this detail will be relevant in a later episode.
Back at the McCutcheon murder trial, Perry Mason convinces the Judge to give him more time to prepare for the Gallardo brothers’ case despite continuous opposition from prosecutor Thomas Milligan.
Perry then meets the brothers in jail to ask them about their backstories. Rafael confirms that his fingerprints could not possibly be on Brooks’ car. The brothers also tell Perry about how someone put glass in their food to which Perry responds by assuring them he will take care of it.
Perry pays a visit to the presiding judge to ask if he can place the brothers in protective custody. The judge points out that Perry can’t possibly have the best outcome in every situation but Perry eventually persuades him into accepting his request.
Later in the episode, Linda, Perry’s ex-wife, comes to drop-off their son Teddy at his house to stay for the night and allow him get to know his father.
Perry takes Teddy to a movie instead of helping him with his homework which leads to a conversation with Teddy’s teacher the following morning. Perry explains the divorce situation to the teacher, Ms. Ames, and she agrees to not let anyone else find out about it for Teddy’s wellbeing.
Anita St. Pierre visits Della at the office. After the two of them kiss for the first time, they smoke some Turkish cigarettes and share a meal together.
Towards the end of the episode, Lydell McCutcheon arranges a secret meeting with Perry where he threatens him to stop digging into his son’s personal life. But we all know that Perry is going to do no such thing.
2. Who is Noreen Lawson?
When Perry calls the phone number he found in Brooks McCutcheon’s wallet (the one planted by the mysterious man in the evidence box), he finds out that it is the number of a medical facility called San Haven.
Perry and Della then go to meet Camilla Nygaard to ask her about the McCutcheon family. When he mentions the name San Haven, Camilla unintentionally gives them the name “Lawson”.
So, Perry goes to the facility to find a Ms. Lawson. He sneaks into her room and takes a few pictures. Behind one of the photo frames, he sees the name Noreen Lawson.
A few moments later, Noreen gets brought into the room and we discover that she is now in a catatonic state. Before Perry can ask her anything, he gets caught by the staff and is asked to leave.
By the way Camilla reacted to San Haven with “that poor Lawson girl” makes it seem like Brooks McCutcheon had something to do with the state she is in right now. Even when Perry brought up her name in his meeting with Lydell, he reacted angrily.
It looks like we’ll have to wait for the next episode to find out the whole story.
3. Perry’s Confession to Della
Perry is reminded of his past actions (the Emily Dodson incident) twice in this episode: once by the judge and the second time by Lydell McCutcheon. They call him out for being too self-righteous and point out how whenever he thinks he’s doing the right thing, he actually ends up causing a lot more damage than before.
These words prompt him to look at Emily’s letters again. But this time, he decides to show them to Della, along with the certificate of her suicide.
Della feels betrayed that Perry hid this information for three months and that he never explained to her why they stopped taking criminal cases. She tells him that they are a team and that he should not have to deal with every situation on his own.
Perry says that he cannot understand what made him keep the information from her for so long but it doesn’t seem to convince Della of anything. She is definitely going to have a hard time trusting him from now on but we won’t see how this plays out until the next episode. Let’s hope she can forgive him soon and that Perry learns to be more open with her in the future.
4. Are the Gallardo Brothers still innocent?
Paul Drake is on an adventure of his own in this episode. He goes to Hooverville, the place where the Gallardos lived, to find out more about them. There, he finds a gun dealer from whom he rents five guns for the day.
Paul fires a bullet from each gun into a stack of large books. On examining each bullet, he finds the exact same bullet as the one used to kill Brooks McCutcheon. When he asks the dealer if he rented the gun to the Gallardo brothers, his response is enough to say that his hunch was true.
Rafael and Mateo Gallardo have convinced Perry that they are innocent and their behaviour so far has convinced us too. But what does this new piece of information say about them?
Either they lied about their involvement in Brooks’ murder, or someone else found the exact same gun they rented and framed them with it. And if the latter is true, it is highly unlikely that the gun dealer will help identify anyone else who rented the same gun considering his business is illegal.
Maybe the Gallardo brothers are guilty after all.
5. Who really killed Brooks McCutcheon?
In the three episodes we have seen so far, there is already quite a long list of suspects for Brooks’ McCutcheon’s murder. Crippen, from episode 2, didn’t make an appearance in episode 3 and is still a suspect. Charlie Goldstein’s involvement in this case is still unclear.
The mysterious man with the hat and gloves also didn’t appear in episode 3. We know that he killed Goldstein but we can’t say for sure that he killed Brooks.
The previous episode told us that he was on Crippen’s side but if he wanted Perry to find Noreen Lawson (since he planted the phone number), that means he was probably trying to help him. This makes his motives unclear as well.
Like Perry and Drake suggested in the latest episode, Detective Holcomb had enough reasons to get rid of Brooks. But Della disagrees with them by saying that there isn’t any solid evidence to prove it yet.
The introduction of Noreen Lawson opens up the possibility of someone close to her being a suspect. Maybe they wanted revenge for what Brooks did to her.
Finally we have Lydell McCutcheon, Brooks’ father. Lydell presents himself as a true villain in episode 3. He is definitely hiding something and he’s afraid that Perry might uncover it. His speech about being concerned for his son’s family and their reputation could also be about wanting to protect his own reputation.
There’s also a good chance that none of these people are guilty either and that the real murderer is yet to be revealed.
Episode 4 of Perry Mason season 2 will release on March 27, 2023, on HBO. Let’s hope we get some answers by then.
6. About Perry Mason (2020)
Perry Mason is an American period drama television series based on the character of the same name created by Erle Stanley Gardner. It focuses on the origin story of famed defense lawyer Perry Mason. The series was developed and written by Rolin Jones and Ron Fitzgerald and stars Matthew Rhys in the title role.
Long before Perry Mason became the legendary lawyer that he was, he was a PTSD-ridden war vet struggling to find his place in the world. His first test as a lawyer was the gruesome killing of a child who was kidnapped and returned with his eyes sewn open. His next case is to reveal the true killer of Brooks McCutcheon.