‘Defending Jacob‘ is a murder mystery television series by Apple TV+. The show boasts of a stellar cast, led by Chris Evans and also includes Jaeden Martell and Michelle Dockery in leading roles. It is based on a novel of the same name by William Landay. In the first six episodes of the miniseries, the show depicts how a boy named Ben Rifkin was found stabbed to death in a park. Then, the show proceeds to show how his classmate, Jacobs ended up becoming the top suspect of the case, making his family invest all their energy into defending him while suffering from scorn by the community.
Defending Jacob Episode 7 Recap:
The seventh episode begins with a flashback scene wherein Andy gives Neal some advice on how to handle his first murder case. Then, the scene shifts to the original timeline and Jacob’s trial. Joanna urges the judge to disallow Neal from mentioning Andy’s father at the time of opening motions. The judge agrees, saying that Neal can only mention Andy’s father after consulting him and Joanna beforehand.
After one session, Andy sees the guy he had seen in the car outside the court. He tells Duffy about it, who finds out that the guy is a gangster. However, nothing can be done about him until he explicitly threatens the Barbers. At the trial, Neal tries to tell the jury how Andy had been involved in handling the case early on and also brings up the porn in Jacob’s computer and his knife. However, Joanna counters those arguments smartly. Then, Neal brings up the incident wherein Andy had grabbed his collar. While doing so, he slips the fact that Andy’s father is a convicted murderer and rapist. Joanna raises an objection and the judge warns Neal. He urges the jury to attempt to disregard what Neal said about Andy’s father earlier.
It turns out that Matt cannot be found and has possibly run away to Florida with his girlfriend. He was supposed to testify. Next, Neal calls Derek. He establishes that Ben used to bully Jacob. Furthermore, Neal asks Derek about Jacob’s usage of a violent, pornographic site. Moreover, he also reveals to the jury how Jacob had posted a story on the website. The story very closely resembles Ben’s murder, told in the first-person perspective. This seriously casts doubt on Jacob’s innocence.
In their car, Andy asks Jacob if he actually killed Ben. Jacob says he didn’t. At their house, Andy and Joanna discuss alternate strategies as Matt has left. Andy suggests calling Sarah as a witness and bringing up the nude photo incident, in order to cast some doubt over Derek’s character. Jacob says he does not want to drag Sarah into the case, but Andy tells him that he has no say in the matter. Jacob tries calling Sarah, but she does not pick up as she has read his story.
Laurie asks Andy if he knew about the story that Jacob had posted. Andy says that he did not. However, he admits to knowing about Jacob using the violent pornography site. Laurie tells Andy that she thinks that Jacob might have killed Rifkin. The two argue about that. Andy storms off. Leonard Patz writes a note addressed to Ben’s parents. He admits that he killed Ben.
Defending Jacob Episode 7 Review:
The seventh episode of ‘Defending Jacob’ is probably the only episode in the entire series, where the show’s slow-burn, brooding tone works effectively. I have criticized the show for its sluggish pace in the earlier episodes. While that still holds true for the first six episodes, the penultimate episode of the series might come as a form of respite or pay-off to the viewers who have been patient.
To begin with, the trial is covered quite well. The drama can be felt throughout, in almost every scene. Moreover, it is because of the unhurried tone of the narrative that the viewers are presented with a rather comprehensive view of the trial. The odds keep swinging between the two sides. It is easy to look at the case through the jury’s eyes and imagine how it would be a tough decision to make. Moreover, Joanna’s excellence as an attorney is also not missed. The way she counters Neal’s arguments is quite witty and would even make a few viewers punch the air.
The Barbers starting to doubt Jacob’s innocence is something I did not see coming. It is completely believable too. This is the point when the stakes are higher than ever. Leonard Patz’s admission of guilt towards the end is also quite shocking. It would be extremely interesting to see how that plays out in the final episode.
Read More: Where Was Defending Jacob Filmed?