From what we’ve seen, the Witness Protection Program is all about starting over — and to some degree it’s about righting a wrong. But as we saw over and over on tonight’s “In Plain Sight,” making amends is a completely different story.
You can run from these spoilers, but they’ll keep coming until they find you…
Five months ago in Forest Hills, Queens, a young couple is welcoming their family over for shabbas dinner when federal agents burst in. They’re here to arrest the elderly owner of the family-owned electronics store for piracy, interstate transport of stolen good and a host of other bad stuff. But before they take the man away, the young husband speaks up. He’s been working with Albanian gangsters to pay for a fertility doctor for him and his wife — who now, upon hearing what her husband has done, wants nothing to do with him. Thus, Avi Rosenzweig becomes Andy Roth.
But now, there’s a problem. Andy/Avi has been recognized — and none of the security provided by the Federal Marshal Service has even come close to throwing him off the trail. He tracks him down through his synagogue, learrns what motel he’s been moved to, and surprises Mary and Marshall as they’re cleaning Andy’s stuff out of his apartment (his skills annoy Mary and impress Marshall, who says he’s like an Orthodox leprechaun). He’s Samuel Garfinkel (Richard Schiff), and after they take him in for questioning — and he flirts up a storm with Eleanor — they find out he’s a rabbi, there to obtain a get — a Jewish divorce document. Rachel, Avi/Andy’s wife, has refused to talk with him for five months, and she wants a divorce.
But Andy refuses — and refuses to give up hope on his marriage. He wants to get Rachel back and make things right. In from what I can tell an extremely unorthodox move (pardon the pun), Mary arranges for the rabbi to bring Rachel to see Avi. When she meets him face to face, it’s clear she’s about five months pregnant. And when Avi finds out the baby’s his, he really hangs on for dear life. What transpires is really kind of heartbreaking. Their marriage ended when Avi engaged in criminal behavior, Rachel says, and she wants out — this can’t be fixed. While Avi argues that it’s against God’s law, she counters, saying that it’s cruel and unfair for him to hold her hostage in a marriage she doesn’t want.
In the midst of the fight, she begins to hemorrhage, and at the hospital the doctor asks Avi to sign a form authorizing the termination of the pregnancy, as it looks like they can’t save both mother and baby. But he demands that they save both, uncomprehending why God would do this to him. Which is when Samuel pulls out the big guns. God gave you life and a brain, and that’s it, he says. When you decided to lie, cheat, and steal — that’s all you, you self-involved child. Now wake up and use your head. Which we take to mean makes Avi sign the form.
But in the end it’s OK. Both Rachel and the baby are alright. And Avi realizes that he wants to stop hurting her, so he gives her the signed get. She’s on bed rest in Albuquerque until the baby comes, and he’s requested to stay close just in case. In the end, it looks as though the family might pull through — or that Rachel will soften just a little bit.
At the hospital, Mary’s been looking at Samuel with something approaching awe. He finds people, he says, because families are like puzzles and when one piece is missing it throws everything off. He finds people, no matter how long they’ve been gone, he says, and gives Mary his card. She takes a long look, knowing that she’s just been given the means to track down her father if she wants to.
Meanwhile, Mary’s dysfunctional family may be on its way to functioning. Jinx is coming home from rehab for the weekend, and Brandi, determined to keep her away from temptation, gets rid of most of the booze in the house (Mary just hides the $50 bottle of tequila) and stocks up on soda. She’s ready to be there to support her mother. A very fragile Jinx isn’t in the house five minutes when Peter (Joshua Malina) knocks on the door to ask Brandi to the prestigious Governor’s Ball — the social event of the season.
Brandi’s excited but terrified that he’s going to find out he’s way out of her league — particularly when she learns Peter’s a multimillionaire car dealer. But Jinx incredibly touchingly rides to the rescue, giving her a dress Brandi’s dad once bought her, and doing her hair and makeup — she looks stunning. After Brandi goes off for her big date, Jinx all but collapses, exhausted and sad — and she tells Mary she needs to make amends. She lost the letter Mary’s father wrote to her right after he left — but it turns out Mary keeps it with her. She also owes Mary a bottle of tequila — she found the hidden bottle, and threw it out.
What did you think? Is there hope for Jinx yet? Will Brandi end up with Peter? Is the Shannon family slowly getting their collective act together? And how much did you love Richard Schiff’s accent?