HBO’s ‘Perry Mason’ started slow and stayed in the same, sometimes unbearable, pace that didn’t have the much-needed burn. But the moment it entered the second half of the season, it picked momentum, and since then, has not slowed down one bit. This excitement of the series continues in the seventh episode where the show resolves several mysteries and leaves the door open for the finale where the only thing that we look forward to is finding out how Perry Mason will win this case. If you haven’t seen the show yet, head over to HBO. SPOILERS AHEAD
Perry Mason Episode 7 Recap
Perry Mason follows Jim Hicks to an abandoned field, half scared for his life and half hopeful that this would be the final piece of the puzzle to bring the case together. He comes close enough when his doubts about the Radiant Assembly of God are confirmed. He calls Hicks and then Mr. Baggerly on the stand, but an unexpected event at the court stops the proceedings.
Meanwhile, Strickland informs him of the connection between Ennis and Seidel, but then loses track of Seidel while following him. This causes a strain between him and Perry, and Strickland quits. Officer Drake’s investigation into Ennis leads him to crucial evidence that resolves the mystery of how Charlie Dodson died. Amidst all this, Perry and Della try to stop the resurrection of the child, while Lupe tells Perry that his house has been auctioned and that she is the new owner.
How did Charlie Dodson Die?
After weeks of toiling after the clues and chasing the leads into the shadiest alleys of Los Angeles, Perry Mason and Associates is finally able to crack the mystery of what exactly happened to Charlie Dodson, and why.
First things first, why was Charlie Dodson kidnapped? It begins with the Radiant Assembly of God, the church that has been involved with the case since the beginning. Despite all the donations from the people and the incredible showmanship of Sister Alice, the church fell into a debt that it could not pay its way out of. One bad investment after another led to a financial crisis, and to get out of it, they needed to steal money from themselves. That’s where the company named Sunroot Services, Inc. comes into play. The financial head of the church, Mr. Eric Seidel came up with the idea of this shell company that would prove to be an excellent reprieve for the church. He needed Jim Hicks to do the numbers and Mr. Herman Baggerly to be the generous donor to keep the cash flow.
It all worked well for them, but all good things must come to an end. There came a time when Mr. Baggerly decided not to give away his money anymore, which landed Mr. Seidel in a difficult position. The church still needed well over $100,000 to get out of the debt, and since their source of income was gone. Mr. Seidel came up with a different idea. By this time, Mr. Hicks had been fired and George Gannon had taken over the book-keeping.
Back in Denver, Strickland discovers that one of the Polacks, Detective Ennis, and Mr. Seidel had been at the same place at the same time in 1914. When it came to executing the plan of a kidnapping, Seidel called upon his old contacts, which is what brought the dirty cop into play. The plan was to kidnap Charlie Dodson and demand a ransom of $100,000. Because Seidel knew that Charlie was Mr. Baggerly’s grandson, the old man would have to empty his pockets to save the child. That’s exactly what happened, but then, something went wrong.
The two Polacks had been hiding out in a hotel with little Charlie. Had it been someone else, they could have handled the situation, but with a child, things get trickier. Little Charlie would cry a lot and they didn’t know how to shut him up. As a solution, Ennis resorted to the services of the Chinese brothel. He brought a woman to breastfeed Charlie, but he didn’t realize that she was a user of heroin. Feeding from her led Charlie to suffocate and die.
Did Sister Alice resurrect Charlie Dodson?
‘Perry Mason’ begins with the question of who killed Charlie Dodson? The suspicion skips from one person to another, and with so many factors in play, we get busy figuring out the mystery. This is when the show throws another question at us. In her epileptic meeting with God, Sister Alice declares that she will bring back Charlie Dodson from the dead. While we know that it is not going to happen, we are curious to find out how it will play out.
In its penultimate episode, after stringing us along for weeks, the show finally answers that question, leaving us all the more apprehensive about the fate of the characters. Despite knowing that there is going to be no miracle, Sister Alice arrives at the cemetery on the Easter Sunday, amidst the throng of the crowd that is equal parts hopeful and wary of her. Ignoring everyone else, even Perry Mason who begs her not to ruin the chances of Emily’s innocence in court, she does her mumbo-jumbo and clumsily opens the casket. Turns out, Charlie Dodson is not there.
Before we can wonder where he went, a riot erupts and everyone hangs on to dear life and a car out of the cemetery. Sister Alice and her mother end up on a different route and it turns out that Mother McKeegan had anticipated her daughter’s failure at resurrecting the child. And so, she prepared a back-up plan. In the middle of the road, people find a baby. Mother McKeegan bursts into the crowd and declares that Charlie Dodson has been brought back to life.
While Sister Alice tries to process this, we wonder how does Birdy McKeegan possibly plan to convince the church and everyone else that she didn’t steal a baby to replace it with Charlie, while the real son of Emily Dodson is god knows where. What did they do with Charlie’s corpse? Perhaps, Sister Alice had been wondering the same, which is why, instead of going along with her mother’s act, she decides to run away. Where to, no one knows. But surely, this doesn’t spell good for the church.
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