Stalker “Love Kills” Review (Season 1 Episode 20 )

Stalker Love Kills Season Finale 2015 10

On the season and likely series finale of “Stalker,” the two main plotlines of the last episode came together in “Love Kills.” While the episode as a whole was fine, I can’t really say I was surprised by any of it, either, save maybe the tail end, but not in the sense of who one of the killers turned out to be, but rather in what happened in the cliffhanger, but we’ll get to that.

As the episode opened, Janice presents her serial killer theory to Amanda and Trent, who are dubious, especially since if she’s right, it will mean a number of people accused of past murders by their respective stalkers will have been proven innocent, which doesn’t exactly paint them in the best light, publically. Trent storms out, but Amanda says if Janice is right, she’s going to need a lot more evidence before she brings this to the DA.

As all this plays out, we see the serial killer stalking his next victim, and lo and behold if it isn’t a vet from one of Kevin Williamson’s other series, “The Vampire Diaries”- Kat Graham, aka the witchy Bonnie, who just can’t seem to keep herself out of harm’s way, even on Williamson’s other shows, apparently. (Williamson co-scripted this episode, BTW.) Here, she plays Christine Harper, who had some issues with her ex, Brian Mitchell (Michael Cassidy, “Men at Work”) with whom she was engaged in a somewhat one-sided polyamorous relationship with a tattoo artist named Eva Bowen (Jessica Camacho, a vet of Maggie Q’s previous show, “Nikita”).

A masked figure stalks Christine, filming her, watching her enter her security code, even breaking into her house, but doesn’t make a move- yet. But sure enough, later on, he attacks her at her front door after she realizes someone has broken in and makes a run for it. Unlike last episode’s potential victim, who got away, Christine was not so lucky, proving that Kat Graham is even unluckier here than she is in her day job at “TVD.” The team finds her stabbed to death and naturally starts talking to all the aforementioned parties.

They also narrow down the likely meeting places of those who were once accused of stalking the respective victims, zoning in on one in particular, which also proffer up a host of other suspects, including Jamie Tolliver (Sam Witwer, “Being Human”) a short-tempered creepy guy from the meetings that Eva suggests that the team might want to look into; the meeting’s secretary, Nathan (Kristoffer Polaha, “Backstrom”), who you’ll recall I fingered for the crime in last week’s review; and even Will (Adam Kaufman, “State of Affairs”), aka Vicki’s ex-husband, who she was looking into for the murder of Sharon, the woman he had an affair with behind her back.

Vicki was more than a little taken aback to find Will sitting in on one of said sex/love addict meetings, though he later explains he’d been going ever since they broke up. Still, more than a little suspicious, obviously. Fortunately, Beth returns to work, and agrees to actively look into the crime on Vicki’s behalf even further, especially after she talks to Stan Gardner (Billy Malone, “Grey’s Anatomy”), who confirms that his alibi has been proven by the resurfacing Barry, his old friend who bailed on him because of looming drug charges, which eventually caught up with him. Sure enough, it looks inevitable that Gardner will be released, which leaves Vicki wondering if her husband could have possibly done such a thing.

Beth finds one clue that Vicki didn’t previously know about- leather was found underneath the nails of the victim, but Vicki says that Will isn’t exactly the leather-wearing type. Vicki finally confronts Will about it, who isn’t amused to be accused of the crime and storms out, after Vicki warns her that she won’t be the only one looking into him for the murder. Sure enough, he is later brought in for questioning- but not for Sharon’s murder- for Christine’s. Could Will actually be the serial killer the team is looking for?

Not helping matters is the fact that Jamie and Nathan have conflicting alibis for the night of her murder. Jamie doesn’t exactly help his cause when he attacks Eva at her tattoo shop and she has to stab him with some scissors to escape. Thankfully, the team shows up just in time to arrest Jamie, but is still wary of whether he killed anybody. Especially when an all too convenient ski mask crops up in his back seat, which seems too easy for such a methodical killer. Further, Will’s alibi for the night Christine was murdered doesn’t hold up, either, but later on, Brian and Jamie are indeed cleared of any wrongdoing, beyond Jamie’s assault on Eva.

The team brings in Will and put a tracker on him after questioning him, then sits back and waits to see what he does after outright being subtly accused of murder. Sure enough, he goes straight to Vicki’s house, much to her horror, so she locks the door and brandishes her gun, waiting for him to try something. Unfortunately for her, the real serial killer is already there and inside the house, and sure enough, it’s Nathan, as I predicted. Called it!

They tussle, and Will does show up and ends up getting stabbed for his troubles, but it’s enough to stall until the team gets there, and Jack shoots Nathan as he dives for the gun along with Vicki and they wrestle for it. Convinced they have their man, including for the crime of killing Sharon, they cart Will off to get stitched up and all is seemingly right in the world. Except that’s it’s not, of course.

Amanda asks Jack to keep Ethan over the weekend, as she and Trent try to work things out, then Jack goes over to Beth’s and they hook up for real, finally. We get a return of the creepy cover, this time out, a take on The Carpenter’s “Close to You,” but of course. Will goes by Vicki’s to see how she is, and gets an apology, and they kiss.

However, Vicki notices his watch has a leather band on it, and puts two and two together and once again accuses him of murder, but makes a dire mistake in the process: she leaves herself vulnerable and Will snags her gun while she isn’t looking. Alas, that’s where we leave things, so unless the show ends up getting picked up by another network or a streaming service, that’s where it will stay.

So, I saw this twist coming a mile away, down to the whole leather band on the watch thing, so I can’t say I was surprised by any of it, especially since I called who the serial killer was as well. Though it was a competently executed episode, and had its tense moments, it’s hard to enjoy something that you so thoroughly predicted every big “twist” of in retrospect. I mean, when I saw Williamson’s name on the episode, I had high hopes that he might throw me for a loop, “Scream”-style, but no such luck. Oh well. Maybe it’s just as well the show was cancelled after all.

I mean, don’t get me wrong, for the most part, I really enjoyed it, and there were certainly some choice episodes that weren’t predictable, and I didn’t mind the resolution of Beth’s big arc, even though we had to wait an awful long time for it. But the cliffhanger here was pretty tired, especially since you’d think Vicki, as a trained agent, would know better than to give herself away when she was in such a vulnerable spot.

I get that it was her ex-husband and all, and she thought he was innocent at the time, but the minute she realized he wasn’t, she should have made an excuse and sent him packing and dealt with it later. Now she’s in a life-or-death situation with a guy that has already killed before. I don’t see that ending well for her, and she only has herself to blame for putting herself in such a terrible position. Remember your training, girl!

So, all in all, an admittedly hit-or-miss season overall. Was it worth renewing a second season? I think so. More often than not, it was more hit than miss, and there were some genuinely spooky and unpredictable moments scattered throughout the show to make it worthwhile.

I also really liked the cast, but if this is it for the show, they will rebound from it pretty quickly, no doubt, so I imagine they’ll be okay regardless of the outcome. Although, with Maggie Q and Dylan McDermott an actual real-life couple now, I’m sure they’re disappointed they won’t get to continue working together, barring any unforeseen new gigs together, which is certainly a possibility.

What did you think of the season finale of “Stalker”? Were you disappointed, too? Do you think the show has a shot at getting renewed elsewhere? Would you say that it’s worth saving? Did you like the cast, too? What was your favorite episode? How about your least favorite? Sound off on this and more down below, and thanks for reading!