Created by Ed Sinclair and directed by Will Sharpe, ‘Landscapers’ is an unsettling true-crime series that explores the murders of Patricia and William Wycherley in 1998. Focusing primarily on the jaded lives of Susan and Christopher Edwards, the show slowly unravels the mystery of the Wycherleys’ deaths and the distressing story of the Edwardses. Olivia Colman, David Thewlis, Daniel Rigby, Kate O’Flynn, and Dipo Ola star in pivotal roles.
Right from the start, we are hooked onto the art-house style of the HBO miniseries as it delves into the psyche of the deeply in love but thoroughly miserable Edwardses. Traversing between France and England, we discover shocking secrets about the middle-aged couple. If you were looking for the recap and ending explainer of ‘Landscapers’ episode 1, we’ve got you covered! SPOILERS AHEAD.
Landscapers Episode 1 Recap
The episode opens with a statement highlighting that Susan and Christopher Edwards were convicted of murder and sentenced to a minimum of 25 years in prison in 2014, but continue to insist upon their innocence. We then shift to Susan, at a police station, talking to a lawyer over the phone, who asks her not to reveal her story until he officially begins to represent her. Then, we go into the past and see Susan buying a poster of Gary Cooper for €170. However, after she reaches home, she lies to her husband by saying that it cost her €20.
Christopher then goes for a job interview but performs badly due to his lack of fluency in French. Dejected, he decides to read Gérard Depardieu’s letter to him, which celebrates the beauty of life and cinema. Overwhelmed by their financial predicament, Christopher calls his stepmother, Dr. Tabitha Edwards, to ask for money. He informs her about his whereabouts and requests her not to reveal the details of their conversation to the police.
Afterward, Christopher goes to meet Susan at the cafe; he hides how badly the interview went, making her believe that he’ll likely get the job. Meanwhile, Tabitha calls the police and exposes her stepson’s crime. She then sends Christopher an email to let him know that she has spoken to the authorities.
Susan gets upset at Christopher for disclosing their secret; however, the couple decides to get through the crisis together. Meanwhile, two cops, Emma and Paul, go to the Wycherleys’ old house in Mansfield. After a conversation with the neighbor, Nigel, the cops call for backup and decide to dig up the garden. Detective Chief Inspector Collier sends Christopher an email, asking him to divulge his phone number or meet the police in person.
Christopher replies to the police’s mail and agrees to stay in touch but claims that he and Susan cannot immediately return to the UK as his wife is of “a fragile disposition” and has to get used to the idea of shifting. Meanwhile, the cops find two bodies underneath the garden. However, DCI Collier is angry because there is no hard evidence that can be used to arrest the Edwardses.
Back at the Edwards’ drab residence, Christopher watches the news, aware that the cops are investigating the bodies. Susan cries, blaming herself for the mess, but her husband comforts her. Then, the couple burns a box full of Susan’s parents’ things, including their photograph. They ultimately decide to cooperate with the police and tell their side of their story.
Thus, Christopher writes to DCI Collier, stating that they wish to clear their name and avoid a surprise arrest. He asks the police to pay for their tickets to return to England. Christopher and Susan board the train and assure themselves that they’ll stick to the plan. They decide that they’ll contact a lawyer upon arrival and tell the police what really happened.
As the train approaches Saint Pancras station, police reinforcements arrive to secure the area. Susan and Christopher get off the train and face the police a little perplexedly. Afterward, during the end credits, we see news reporters talking about the Edwardses and the Wycherleys, emphasizing the details of the latter’s postmortem report. They also show the gun Christopher used, along with the emails he sent to the police.
Landscapers Episode 1 Ending: Do Susan and Christopher Get Arrested?
Yes, Susan and Christopher do get arrested, even though we don’t see it actually happen onscreen. At the beginning of the episode, we see Susan calling a lawyer from the police station, so we know the couple is taken into custody. The clippings during the end credits also highlight how the Edwardses were arrested — on suspicion of murder — upon their arrival in England and held in Nottinghamshire for 24 hours for police questioning.
Where Are Susan and Christopher Living?
Susan and Christopher live in France. Although Susan manages to converse in French, Christopher feels quite left out as he hasn’t grasped the language. The Edwardses are in France because they are in hiding, having fled England sometime after the murder of Susan’s parents. However, they choose to come back to England to deal with the police because they are tired of living an impoverished life. Essentially fugitives in a country that provides them with no opportunities, the Edwardses decide to return to their homeland, clear their name and hopefully regain their old life. Clearly, and foolishly, they believe in their innocence.
Who Are Patricia and William Wycherley? Why Were They Murdered?
Patricia and William Wycherley are Susan’s parents and Christopher’s in-laws, hailing from Mansfield, Nottinghamshire. Right from the start, we are told that the Edwardses killed the elderly Wycherleys but the finer details emerge as the episode progresses. When Christopher talks to Tabitha he says, “I’ve done something rather silly.” This makes it seem as though Christopher was the one who actually carried out the crime, even though Susan was a part of it. However, we think it means that Christopher simply helped in covering up Susan’s actions.
Later, Nigel tells Emma and Paul that he saw Christopher digging a deep hole in the garden, right around the time the eccentric Wycherleys had “moved.” Nigel initially assumed the hole was for rhododendrons and even joked with Christopher about him burying his in-laws there. Of course, we know that the hole must have been for the bodies, especially because the cops discover them. So yes, Susan and Christopher did kill Patricia and William Wycherley.
As Christopher does not mention Susan’s name whilst addressing the crime, it seems possible that the husband is trying to take the blame away from his wife who we think actually committed the murders. It is confirmed, though, that Christopher buried the bodies. Considering how inept they are at dealing with finances, it is likely that the Edwardses killed the Wycherleys for money. Additionally, a few flashbacks make it apparent that Susan did not have a happy childhood. So, it is possible that a deep-seated resentment led to the murder.
Who is Tabitha Edwards? How Do the Police Find Out About Susan and Christopher’s Crime?
The police find out about Susan and Christopher’s crime through Dr. Tabitha Edwards, who is Christopher’s stepmother. Unable to cope up with a harrowing financial crisis, Christopher calls Tabitha from a telephone booth to beg for money. Clearly, Susan’s obsession with Hollywood memorabilia is expensive. Feeling like he owes Tabitha an explanation, he reveals to her the events of the past 15 years and the reason behind their shift to France. Although he claims that what he did was “not what it seems,” he tells her all about the murder of the Wycherleys, trusting her not to betray him to the police.
However, Tabitha immediately contacts the English police to let them know that her stepson revealed that he buried his wife’s parents in a back garden in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, 15 years ago. Later, when Christopher casually asks Susan if he can reach out to his stepmother for financial assistance, she immediately shoots down the idea because no one knows about their whereabouts or crime. She believes Tabitha will contact the police. Although Christopher says that Tabitha is family, Susan insists that they cannot trust anyone. Clearly, Susan is right.
After Nigel’s observations and recollections convince the police to dig up the garden in the Wycherleys’ old house, the bodies of two individuals that died due to two gunshots wounds in the chest are found. We also find out that Christopher was in charge of the house after the Wycherleys seemingly moved, which further implicates the Edwards.