Season 2 episode 5, titled ‘The Black Box,’ centers around exactly that. The box containing flight records found by Hilde and her friends is finally decrypted and reveals a surprise that takes us back all the way to the season 1 mystery of the missing boy Richie Fife. The plane itself seems to have disappeared, making things all the more mysterious. There is a growing feeling of danger as the shadowy forces controlling the small town of Erie Harbor draw in closer but remain elusive, despite the young reporter’s efforts.
The added incentive of possibly saving her grandfather pushes Hilde even more, and perhaps she oversteps a line when she threatens the thuggish man who she suspects of following her. The mystery of Erie Harbor keeps getting deeper, so let’s get a handle on ‘Home Before Dark’ season 2 episode 5, and see what we know. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Home Before Dark Season 2 Episode 5 Recap
The episode opens with Hilde, Spoon, and Donny escaping from the mansion with the black box they found in the damaged airplane in the basement. They request Frank Jr. to get it decoded and soon enough, the last recordings made in the plane’s cockpit before it crashed are revealed. Hilde, along with her parents and Frank Jr., is shocked when she learns that the plane was being piloted by Sam’s father. Sam is Matt’s childhood friend who was imprisoned for many years for allegedly kidnapping Richie Fife before getting his name cleared with Hilde’s help in season 1.
As they listen to the distorted recording, it is clear that Sam’s father Hank had noticed something on the ground and flown his plane too low in an attempt to take a picture of it. The plane had stalled and crashed, killing him, but not before he mentioned Richie. Try as they might, neither Hilde nor Frank Jr. nor Matt can figure out how or why Hank knew Richie, a boy who his son Sam would later be accused of kidnapping.
Meanwhile, Hilde also attempts to uncover her grandfather’s past in an attempt to figure out why all his friends (with the exception of Junior Johnson) mysteriously died. She finds out some interesting facts about him, including him being a volunteer firefighter as well as an ex-employee of Strata Tech, but the leads take her nowhere. She is further disheartened when her parents tell her that her efforts will most likely not help her grandfather get better.
Home Before Dark Season 2 Episode 5 Ending: Is Someone in the House?
Despite figuring out that Hank’s plane crashed somewhere in the Saratoga Mountains, the young reporter is unable to pinpoint the exact location of the crash and realizes she will have to retrieve the flight plan, which is likely still in the crashed plane that is locked up in the mansion’s basement. After coaxing Sheriff Trip to accompany her, upon arrival, Hilde is shocked to see that the plane has been moved and the room made completely unrecognizable. Disappointed and angry, Trip berates Hilde and leaves. The young girl also leaves soon after, but not before threatening the man who she suspects of following her and who now claims to be in charge of the mansion’s security.
Hilde says to the man that she knows he still has her backpack, referring to the time when he walked into the mansion while Hilde, Spoon, and Donny were investigating the plane and confiscated their bags. The man wordlessly walks away. However, that night, Hilde wakes up to find the backpacks mysteriously lying on her dining table. She slowly turns around but the episode’s tense cliffhanger doesn’t reveal what she sees.
So it looks like this time around, the danger has actually followed Hilde home, something that hasn’t happened before. What is particularly disturbing about seeing the backpacks on the table is that it signifies that their house has been broken into. This is one of the few times when there seems to be an actual element of physical danger for the young reporter. Considering the bags were picked up by the thuggish “security manager” of the mansion, who has also been following Hilde, it is most likely him that has broken into the house. This is also clear proof of another one of Hilde’s claims that have so far fallen on deaf ears — that the man is trying to intimidate her.
The situation is made even tenser when we realize that Izzy’s boyfriend Ethan is spending the night in the Lisko household and was told to sleep on the couch, which is also near the backpacks. Therefore, Hilde, after noticing the bags and being frozen in fear, is most likely going to see the thuggish man holding Ethan hostage or a similarly ominous scene. However, there is also a chance that she sees Ethan sleeping peacefully, meaning that her stalker slipped in only to place the backpacks and intimidate her, and subsequently slipped out of the house again. In either case, this experience is going to leave the young ace reporter shaken.
What is Found in the Plane’s Black Box?
The plane’s black box, which contains the final sound recordings of the cockpit, reveals that Sam’s father was looking for something obscure on land which he eventually found. In the closing moments of the recording, he says that he must go in closer to get pictures of what he is seeing and despite sharp warnings from air traffic control, proceeds to fly his plane close to the ground, resulting in the crash. Therefore, the black box tells us that whatever Hank saw was so consequential that he was willing to risk his life just to get a picture of it. However, what he saw and its exact location remain unknown.
Interestingly, in the black box recording, Hank says, “Richie was right,” opening up the mystery even more and connecting the two major mysteries of the show. It comes as a surprise to everyone that Hank even talked to Richie as the former was a middle-aged man and the latter was a young boy. However, the fact that the black box mentions Richie means that there might still be hope to learn more about the missing boy (now grown-up) and possibly even track him down. Additionally, it seems like Richie knew about whatever Hank wanted to take a picture of and possibly told him about it. This could also help finally uncover the motive behind Richie’s kidnapping, which has remained a mystery for many years.
Where is the Plane?
When Hilde goes back to the mansion to examine the plane again, she finds it missing and the room, which was stark on her last visit, is now furnished as a luxurious lounge, complete with a billiard table. The plane that she saw earlier has most likely been destroyed by her thuggish stalker who claims to be in charge of the mansion’s security. Obviously, the plane contains proof of some illegal activity that the town’s faceless powers are attempting to suppress, which is why it was hidden in the basement in the first place.
However, after finding the trio’s backpacks near the plane, the elusive criminals likely realized that their hiding place had been compromised and either moved the plane or destroyed it. Unfortunately, Hilde lets slip that she was able to take out the plane’s black box, which is obviously a cause for concern for the mysterious criminals who want all traces of the plane gone. This is most likely why the man continues to intimidate Hilde and takes the drastic step of breaking into the Lisko household at night.
Read More: Is Home Before Dark Based on a True Story?