HBO Max’s ‘Love and Death’ is a true crime drama that recounts the events that led to the tragic death of Betty Gore. Over seven episodes, the show explores the affair between Allan Gore and Candy Montgomery and its aftermath. It all begins when, during a volleyball match, Candy realizes that she is attracted to Allan. She’d been feeling stuck in her dull marriage and needed something exciting. She felt an affair could do the job, which was when Allan started to look like a great prospect.
When Allan agrees to Candy’s proposal, his topmost concern is never to allow the affair to come to light. They don’t want to hurt their spouses, and there’s no intention of any of them getting a divorce. They devise an elaborate plan to keep everything a secret, but there’s only so long that truth can be hidden. In the TV show, Pat and Betty discover the truth, but did they really know about the affair in real life? Let’s find out. SPOILERS AHEAD
Did Betty and Pat Know About the Affair?
Before officially starting their affair, Candy and Allan sat down to go over all the dos and don’ts to make sure their secret wouldn’t be discovered by anyone else. They went to great lengths to come up with all sorts of contingencies, carefully carving out the time that would suit both of them and not raise suspicion among their partners. Everything was planned and timed perfectly, and they succeeded in keeping a lid on it until they eventually decided to part ways.
Ironically, in the TV show, their spouses find out about it after Candy and Allan have ended the affair. To work on their marriage, Pat and Candy attend the Marriage Encounter. This is where Pat discovers everything Candy feels unsatisfied about in their marriage. One day, when she’s out of town, he goes through her stuff, looking for a love letter she’d written him when they got married. Instead, he finds a love letter to her from Allan. He asks Sherry about it, and while she confirms his doubts, she also reassures him that the affair ended a long time ago, and Candy had no intention of leaving him for Allan.
While Pat is more composed in his reaction, Betty’s is more explosive. She notices it over time— the little looks between Allan and Candy like they were sharing a secret, the little talks between them, and Allan telling Candy about everything happening in their household, right to Betty’s suspicion about the lump in her breast. She keeps her cool when Allan is around, but when he leaves town, and Candy comes to see, Betty confronts her, and her doubts are confirmed. This is when she attacks Candy, and things go off the handle.
Because ‘Love and Death’ is a dramatization of the real-life events that happened in the Candy Montgomery-Betty Gore case, we cannot confirm whether Pat and Betty knew about the affair and, if so, how they did find out. In the case of Betty, it is Candy’s confession in court that asserts she knew about the affair. Candy Montgomery confessed to having killed Betty in self-defense, saying that the latter had attacked her with an ax because she was angry about the affair between her husband and Candy. It is possible that real-life Betty, too, noticed the signs over time and eventually confronted Candy about it.
As for Pat, the fact that he stayed with his wife even after she was charged with murder and the truth about her affair became public shows that he might have known about it beforehand. There is nothing to confirm in Pat’s own words when and how he found out about the affair. However, when the trial began, Pat stayed by Candy’s side the entire time. The couple eventually got divorced, but it wasn’t until four years after Candy received a “not guilty” verdict from the jury. To process the murder and infidelity of their spouse is a huge thing. The way Pat handled it (in public, at least) indicates that he might have known about the affair beforehand, and the couple discussed and solved the issue before the murder took place.
Read More: Where Are Candy and Pat’s Kids Now?