After a vulnerable display in last week’s episode, Julian is ruminating on when he discovered what happened to Jericho. He’s at the Turners’ home to babysit for the evening while Dorothy and Sean head to an awards show and Tobe takes Leanne bowling. It’s not off to a great start as he adds money to the growing stash, drinks wine, and smokes pot.
It gets worse when he goes to check on Jericho. The Reborn Doll is back in the crib with no sign of the living, breathing baby anywhere in the house. Julian calls Roscoe, the private investigator, and asks if Leanne has a baby with her. She doesn’t.
He can’t question Sean about it because Sean calls when Dorothy is nearby, instead opting to pretend everything is fine. Making matters worse, his father shows up and begins pretending the Reborn Doll is real until Julian tells him Dorothy isn’t home. He drops the charade immediately and they start drinking wine together. Thinking Dorothy is still treating the Reborn Doll like a real baby, his father doesn’t want to be embarrassed at a baptism. His solution is to swap out the baby with a real one and Julian can only laugh.
His father leaves and Julian waits for Leanne to get home. He watches as Leanne awkwardly tries to kiss Tobe, only for him to lean away and then try to explain. She runs into the house and finds the Reborn Doll on the ground. Julian tries to confront her about it as she goes through the motions of changing its diaper and putting it in the crib. Julian offers her increasing amounts of money to produce the baby – up to $100k – but she ignores him.
Leanne avoids directly answering his questions about the baby (“Is he with Uncle George?”) by discussing the cotton candy she’s eating. It’s one of the moments when she’s being cunning, rather than naive, and dismissive of how he took care of the baby while she was gone. She’s asked him before what he found and he’s never answered her.
When she goes to take care of the doll, he grabs it from her and threatens to drop it down the stairs. Leanne is unbothered by this and believes Julian would never hurt a baby. Just before he can fully let go of the doll, he hears a baby cry and yanks it back up. This leads him to believe the baby is still in the house somewhere and he sets about trying to find it while Leanne prepares for bed.
Broken and emotionally exhausted from his night, Julian eventually goes into Leanne’s room and begins to tell her what happened as the camera cuts away. When Dorothy and Sean get home, the real baby is back in the crib and Julian asks to hold him while seeming happy. Later, he confesses to Sean that Leanne “knows everything.” Sean is less than pleased.
Dorothy asks Leanne about her night and for the first time Leanne doesn’t seem receptive to her. Natalie warned Leanne about how Dorothy could be cruel, but this is the first time Leanne experiences it for herself after being less than enthusiastic about her night. She “accidentally” breaks Dorothy’s pearl necklace, spilling them across the floor. As Dorothy berates her for being clumsy and tries to pick them up, Leanne eats one of the pearls.
I have so many questions after this episode! There’s a throwaway line about Natalie staying with Julian and trying to help him better himself, so she’s at least still tangentially around. Are the bottles and bottles of wine that have been drunk each episode indicative of how much guilt Julian and Sean are feeling about whatever mysterious thing happened to the real baby Jericho? Did Leanne share anything with Julian in return? She’d previously picked up a lock of Natalie’s hair with the same malicious energy that she ate one of Dorothy’s pearls, what’s she doing with the keepsakes?
This season’s tension feels like it’s finally starting to crescendo and with only two episodes left, I’m hoping to get some answers sooner rather than later.