As the episode begins, Leo Doyle (Sam Trammell) sits on the bed and wakes Candace (Laura Gordon). He rubs the spot on her body where a tattoo has been removed before telling her to go back to sleep. Mike Serrato (Aden Young) imagines that he is at the office and a stranger is lurking nearby so he approaches the man. He follows the man through the office before arriving at Canaan High School. He chases the man through the school and into the church. Then, he arrives at home and yells for Paige (Simone Kessell) and the kids but nobody answers. He finds his family eating dinner and the stranger is with them at the table. He removes the man’s hoodie before waking up and chatting with the counselor Colin.
When questioned, Mike says he knows the RRK is inside his head. He claims hypnotherapy is a waste of time but Colin suggests he just needs more time. Colin leaves before Leo scours through the newspaper and searches the Internet for news about Valerie’s body. Paxton (Ed Oxenbould) joins them a few seconds later and tells them about his dream in which Candace has triplets. Leo is unable to find anything about Valerie’s murder. When they leave, Candace checks the computer and finds that the browsing data has been deleted. A colleague, Marcy, checks on Mike at work before he asks her to help him collect everything they have on Beth Stanley.
At the school, Leo gets a visit from Officer Dinkins (Andrew Henry) who wants to talk about the missing nurse. Leo remembers her but he didn’t notice anything odd. Leo tells the officer that Valerie said something about liking to hike along the river. Dinkins says they searched near the river but couldn’t find anything. Marcy gives Mike the evidence while he makes calls to several people. He continues the investigation while Leo stares at a woman who has a tattoo on her leg. He checks his toolbox once getting out but nobody is inside. Moments later, Mike visits Cyd Ramos (Gloria Garayua) at her place.
Mike tells her that Beth Stanley is in Canaan before he is introduced to Cyd’s friend Jess. He is invited in and he begins telling her about Beth leaving home a week after high school graduation. Mike tells her about Leo having not seen his mom in four years before she visited and disappeared. He says Beth moved in with her sister because she was trying to turn her life around. She drove to Canaan to talk to her boy and to take him away. She was in the area before vanishing. Back at the school, Sam (Milly Alcock) tells Paxton that her sister says the bag the pervert gave them is fake. Paxton says he didn’t do it for money because Sam wonders why he said he wanted the man to die. Paxton claims he was just messing with him.
Then, she tells him she would like to take all of her frustrations out on John Ainsworth (Toby Schmitz) before he nearly ruined her dad’s career. After school, Leo speaks with his son about his creative writing assessments. While they drive along, Leo keeps an eye on the river nearby and that nearly causes him to crash. Meanwhile, Paige and Mike speak with Amanda (Mitzi Ruhlmann) about going to school. Amanda tells her mother she should try marijuana since it might calm her down but she says she has too many responsibilities for that. That night, Mike goes into Jake’s room and turns on the constellation lamp. He thinks about taking his son to the special school and Jake saying he forgot the constellation lamp.
Then, he chats with Dr. Hartman about the stranger, his family, and everything else. He tells the doctor about the stranger being in his house. Meanwhile, Leo calls the police and gives them information that can lead them to Valerie’s body. Police search the area and Leo listens to it on his scanner. Police do not find anything so they leave. Leo walks through the woods after that and John approaches him. John tells Leo that he keeps an eye on everything and says he knew Leo was at it again when he came back late after leaving the hospital. Leo attacks him but John tries to convince him that he can help. He tells Leo he needs to calm down first.
Cyd is allowed to return to work. Mike tells her about the people who lived near Arlen and might be willing to speak with them. The leave and meet with one of Arlen’s former neighbors. She is asked about the summer of 93 and Leo’s father. She admits that Arlen was a jerk and that he was always mean to his son. She says her father called the cops on Arlen for having work done on his house at all hours of the night. Candace surprises Leo by stopping by with lunch. He tells her that having a child is going to be great but she says she heard some disturbing news. She says the nurse from the hospital was missing and he admits it was his nurse. They agree to pray for her. Leo recalls the woman’s name and Candace seems to find that a bit odd.
Next, Paige goes to a marijuana dispensary with Brad (Nic English). They joke around a little before leaving with some merchandise. Meanwhile, Mike and Cyd speak with Maddox who worked on Arlen’s house. He tells them that he got Trumped because Arlen pretended his work was shoddy and only paid him a portion of what he was old. He also says he retiled Arlen’s bathroom. Arlen wants them to lay new tile over the old tile. Mike and Cyd wonder if he buried his wife in the floorboards and raised the floor with more tile. They intend to take the new evidence to a judge. When Leo returns home, he finds John waiting for him. Brad and Paige walk along the beach and get high.
She tells him she was avoiding him because of what happened that night. She says it can’t happen again. Brad says he doesn’t want to lose her so he’ll be whatever she needs him to be. Paxton Tells Sam about his father hanging out with John sometimes and they contemplate breaking into his house. Paxton tells Sam about the fish John is obsessed with so Sam says they’ll flush them. Mike gets a call fro Tori before they serve a warrant on Arlen (Anthony Phelan) and search his property. During this time, John tells Leo that he always knew he was the Russian River Killer. Then, he followed him one night and saw him drag Iris into the woods. Only Leo came out so he knew he was the killer. John says this is the reason Leo was cooperative with him.
John says he didn’t know how Leo would react so he didn’t say anything. He was hoping Leo would trust him enough to tell him the truth and that he admires him. Mike gets upset and steps out onto the balcony when the police find nothing. He notices a patio of sorts outside and decides to dig it up next. They use a jackhammer and shovel to search the ground through the night. It rains on them and they continue searching. John and Leo continue talking. John says Leo can’t let careless mistakes trip him up but Leo says he doesn’t make mistakes. John doesn’t agree with that since talking to him is a mistake. Mike recalls Jake talking to him about black holes and how they suck up everything. Then, police find a jaw.
John asks Leo to grab two more beers. Leo goes into the kitchen and opens the fridge only to find Valerie inside.
Reckoning may be getting a little too farfetched now. Despite that, it has never been better. Things are starting to speed up and the show is getting to the point where it has to tell us exactly what has been going on. There is little room for filler and unnecessary blabber now. The show does a lot of things wrong but it has done a good job explaining Leo’s motives. It is easy to see what drove him to murder women and why he strangles them like he does.
I can barely tolerate Gloria Garayua’s squeaky voice at times and I feel like she stands out among the worst in Reckoning. Still, the story is decent and I think the show is interesting enough. I am not sure if it is worth binge watching but it isn’t bad. If you have nothing else going on and need something to watch on weekends or just a few days a week, Reckoning would be a good fit for that void. The episode scores a 7 out of 10. Previous recaps of Reckoning can be found on Reel Mockery.