01x02 - Annihilator

Prodigal Son - 01x02 - Annihilator

MARTIN: Malcolm?

Malcolm, listen to me.

I wa... I want you to remember something.



- Dad.

Dad, what's in here?





♪ Whoa, I feel good ♪

♪ I knew that I would, now ♪

♪ I feel good ♪

♪ I knew that I would, now ♪

♪ So good, so good ♪

♪ I got you ♪

♪ Whoa ♪

♪ I feel nice... ♪

"I am thankful for my past and its many lessons."

- I am thank...
- ♪ I feel nice ♪

♪ Like sugar and spice... ♪




You shouldn't be down here.

Where's the girl?

We don't know.

But we did find other things.

You were right.

Your dad was going to kill me.

Come on.


Hello, Mother.

Morning, sunshine. Join me for brunch.

Adolpho's outside with the car.

Listen, I'm a little busy, so...

Are you gonna eat a meal today?

One would assume.

Then you can do it with me.


♪ Hey! ♪

So I said, "If you sit me next to Huma Abedin

"and that Madoff woman again, I swear, I will throw a splendid fit."

Now I'm at a table of Sacklers. (SIGHS)


I hate The Met.

I hope I'm not boring you.

Uh, sorry, uh, work's blowing up.

Our scanners just picked up a call.

Four dead bodies in Brooklyn Heights.

- Quadruple homicide?
- Crazy, right?

Network might even break into coverage for it.

Fingers crossed. Love you. Mean it.

- Ah.
- Bye.


Well, nothing like a little murder to cheer you up.


You look exhausted.

Yeah, well, not sleeping will do that.

Night terrors?


Are you being safe?

The mouth guard, the restraints?

The nightmares always did require a seat belt.

I know what's triggering them.

Seeing your father again.


No, I-I promised you, I haven't seen him in years.

I know that.

I just meant that he's been featured on the news lately with that... copycat story.

The media loves a charismatic serial killer.

Right. Of course.

What are you not telling me?

Uh, these nightmares...

I've been seeing new things about that night, and, uh...

The girl in the box?

Again with the girl in the box.

They never found her. She didn't exist.

Never found doesn't mean never existed.

Malcolm! The guilt you wear like a millstone around your neck, it will crush you.


I can't.

I have to find out what happened to her, to me and-and...

I know what happened.

You snuck into your father's hobby room, you found photos of his victims, his plans.

Enough evidence to put him away for a hundred lifetimes.

- But there wasn't any girl.
- What if there was?

There has to be a reason I keep seeing her.

No, there doesn't!

Nightmares aren't real, Malcolm.

And neither was she. End of story.

As an investigator, "end of story" rarely means "case solved."

And that's your problem.

You think life is a case to be solved.

Sometimes it's just a tragedy to be endured.


Let me guess.

Lieutenant Gil Arroyo of the NYPD has a new case only you can solve.

City boy.

All right, talk later.

You land a quadruple homicide and don't call me right away?

- I'm hurt, Gil.
- Don't be.

I had to clear you consulting with the brass.

Sure you're up for this?

After the copycat, I thought you might take a break.


Never. I'm great.

Completely cool, %.

You should have said . , I know you're lying.

- I'm glad you're here.

I need that brain of yours.

This crime scene is seriously messed up.

Well, that's my specialty.

AINSLEY: Thank you, Rob.

We're coming to you from Brooklyn Heights.

We haven't gotten official word, but sources tell us that the four victims were all members of the same family.

Oh, hell no.

Oh, hell yes. Dani.

- Jamie.
- It's JT.

Guess Gil's putting the team back together.

- Is he, now?
- GIL: Nothing's official.

Bright's just consulting, not touching the evidence or questioning witnesses.

- Got it?
- Got it. Great.

And good morning.

Now... what were you thinking?

- Did he say team?
- He's just...

Consulting. I know.
But the last time he did this, he chopped a man's hand off with an axe.

And saved his life.

Bright's the best profiler around.

Nobody else can get inside the mind of a killer like him.

Yeah, a chip off the old block.

What do we know about them?

(SIGHS) The Boutsikaris were a shipping family.

Aristos was the father; founded the company with his wife Cora back in Greece.

The children, Jeffrey and Helen, grew up here and ran the family business.

DANI: Neighbors didn't hear anything unusual. No signs of forced entry.

Staff made the meal, left at : .

When they returned this morning, they found this.

Was was Aristos the only one with his mouth sewn shut?

What was the killer trying to say?


- stop Aristos from saying?
- Stop! You're too close.

Oh! Uh, Special Agent Bright.

Uh, it's me, Edrisa. Oh.

- You're, um... too close.
- I'm sorry, Dr. Tanaka.

Or is it Ms. Tanaka?

Ms. Ms. Ms. Tanaka, definitely.

It's so good to see you.

I'm gonna wait in the car, cool?

I take it they were poisoned?

I take it you are right.

So, there's no evidence of external trauma.

Uh, the cyanotic discoloration of the lips indicates that they ingested poison, uh, but I won't know specifics until I do my tox screen.

What are you seeing, Bright?

This wasn't a dinner.

It was an obligation.

GIL: How do you know?

Four separate meals.

Four separate cuisines.

They even have their own condiments and serving dishes.

This family didn't share anything.

Someone demanded they attend.

I'm betting on Aristos, the father.

(QUIETLY): He does know about bad dads.

BRIGHT: And since there was no forced entry,

We can assume they knew the killer and let him in.

What's this discoloration?


So the disease causes the skin to lose pigment.

There's also fresh bruising on either side of the face.

He's also been crying.

Crying... bruising...

The killer held his head so he couldn't look away.

Aristos was forced to watch.

That's why they were tied up.

This wasn't only murder, it was torture.

Targeting the father, Aristos.

He had a front row seat at his family's execution.

The killer must have poisoned Aristos after the others died.

There's also a postmortem incision in his epigastric area.

Why would he do that?

Give me a sec, I'll take a look.

So, we're dealing with a highly organized killer, enacting a methodical plan with Aristos as the target.


Excuse me.

- Hello?
- Malcolm, my boy, it's Dad.


How the hell do you have a phone?

Oh, I don't, I have "phone time."

A critical distinction.

My calls had been exclusively reserved for my medical consultations, but I was able to pull a few strings to help the NYPD and their newest profiler.

So, I heard about this quadruple homicide.

(WHISTLES) That's quite a story.

How do you even know I'm here?

MARTIN: Oh, my. What, you're actually on the scene? Oh, that's great.

Go-go stand behind your sister!

Go on, I-I'll bet I'll be able to spot you!

- No.

No. No, you're busy.
Of course. I get it. I get it.

So tell me about the bodies.

Every killer leaves their own unique signature.

Now, I want to hear all the details.

I want to really be able to see it in my head.

I don't need your help.

Oh, don't be a killjoy.

I have so much to offer.

Now, we're both obsessed with murder. Like father, like son.

Wrong number.


- Sna...



What the hell? Where'd they come from?

They were inside the victim.

The killer inserted them through the abdomen.

GIL: Hey, seal the perimeter!

And put a rush on ESU.

Edrisa, I need you to move away from the body.

I can't. There's one on me.

It's okay. Don't move.

How do you know they're not poisonous?

Oh, they're very poisonous.

The black mouth, coffin-shaped head.

These are black mambas.

Whoa, whoa. What are you doing?

It's okay. I had a few snakes as a kid.

(QUIETLY): Of course you did.

- How you doing, Edrisa?
- I can't move.

That's good. Your brain is protecting you.

There's a part of the cerebellum called the vermis.

It's one of the more primitive parts of the brain.

When you're afraid, it can freeze your motor functions.

That's fascinating.

Right? I know.

For a million years, our brains have been freezing us at the sight of snakes.

Which makes sense.

'Cause if we don't move, we're not a threat.

Slow breaths, Edrisa.

But when we do move...

GIL: Secure those snakes. ESU is coming.

- You're okay.
- Thank you.


Okay, you can stay for one more case.


BRIGHT: This is Bright.

- Leave a message.

Hello, Malcolm, it's your dad.

I heard more about the case.

Ooh. Gruesome stuff.

Anyways, if you want to bounce around some ideas, give me a call.



- Edrisa?
- Is fine. Don't worry.

She's already back to work. Got her tox screen.

The Boutsikaris were poisoned with metoprolol,

- a beta blocker.
- BRIGHT: Nasty stuff.

Killer used it to shut down their hearts.

Well, they certainly had enemies.

The family made their money in the shipping trade.

You know how many shifty people they dealt with?

DANI: They have been involved in hundreds of lawsuits over the years.

Government fines. They were even investigated by Interpol.

JT: Oh, family of snakes.
Maybe that's the message.

A business associate after revenge.

BRIGHT: No, this crime scene didn't feel like business.

It felt personal, like it was directed at Aristos.

Don't all murders seem personal to you?

- JT, shut up.
- You're a dick.

BRIGHT: No. JT's right. We're-we're not gonna get anywhere until we move through this, so let's do it.

Hi. My name's Malcolm Bright, but I was morn Malcolm Whitly.

My father is Dr. Martin Whitly, one of the most notorious serial killers since Jack the Ripper.

Killed people, at least.

All while raising me as the perfect dad.

Yes, he's a psychopath, but I'm not.

I'm just me.

What else can I tell you?

Was it, um... like...

Was it weird?

Having a serial killer for a father?

Yeah. It was super weird.

Okay. Good talk.

Now, back to those snakes.

In mythology, snakes represent fertility, guardianship and vengeance.

I'm-a take a wild guess and say it was vengeance.

- At Aristos.
- Yes. Right.

Our killer was so angry, he destroyed an entire family.

We may be dealing with a family annihilator.

- What's the MO?
- Well, there are several classifications.

The self-righteous blame their mother, the anomic fear financial ruin, the paranoid kill to protect their family from a perceived threat, the disappointed want love.

They're usually male, struggle with depression

- and often kill themselves afterward.
- But not this one.

Are we sure there aren't any more family members?

I'll circle back with the DMV, Social Security office.


You gonna answer that?


BRIGHT: This is Bright. Leave a message.


I respect that you're conflicted about picking up, but as Oscar Wilde said,

"The only way to fight temptation is to yield to it."

Oh, it's Dad, by the way.

Give me a call.

Malcolm, Dad. Remember Bradford Bishop?

Killed five members of his family in ' and was never caught?

I always wondered...

Well, phone time is ending for the day.

A total bust. Thanks for that.

I really would like to speak with you. You sounded tired on the phone. You know, maybe I can help with that.

I don't know. Help with anything.

I just want to help, damn it!


Well, hopefully, we can speak tomorrow.

Goodbye, my boy.


So, Aristos had another son?

Yes, sir. Liam Hauser.

He changed his name five years ago back in Greece after he and his dad had a falling out.

He could be our family annihilator.

Or the next victim.

What is this place?

No idea, but the building's deed's in Liam's name.

There he is.

- Liam?

JT: You have a minute to answer a few questions?

LIAM: Uh, yeah.

Sure, what can I do for you?

Have you spoken to your family recently?


Not in, like, five years.

We're-we're not close.

Why? What's up?

Well, I hate to be the one to tell you this...

They were murdered.

Well, uh, like-like I said, I don't, uh...

Wait, do you not know who did it?

Not yet. We were hoping that you could help us figure that out.

I-I got no clue.

Like I said, I haven't seen them in years.

What happened?

- There were poisoned.
- BRIGHT: And snakes were left behind at the scene.

That mean anything to you?


Those are some pretty serious gloves you have there.

Double Kevlar? Custom-made?

Sorry, uh, do you mind if I just... take a breather? (CHUCKLES)

This is just, it's all so...

Wait here.

GIL: Wait, wait. Hold up.


What the hell is that sound?

JT: What's that smell?



He's a black market animal dealer.

Damn it, Bright, I told you to wait.





We just want to talk.




- DANI: Bright?
- That way.


- Ah... (GRUNTS)

(LAUGHS) It's fine.

Fine. It was just a small one.

Probably not e...

This is Detective Powell with the - .

I got a - , I need an ambulance.

(ECHOING): Hey, Bright? Bright.

I need you to look at me, okay?
You're gonna be fine.

You're gonna be fine.

Breathe. Breathe. Bright.

No, no, no, no. Bright.

- (MUFFLED): Help is coming.


Dad, what's in here?



It's okay, it's okay.

It's all gonna be okay.




- Where is...
- Oh, my God.


Get Dr. Canter. He's awake.

W-What's in this?
W-What drug did you give me?

I need to be able to wake up!
I need to be able to wake up.

It's all under control.

What did you give me?!

LITTMAN: Liam Hauser has asked me to relay a message.

Why you?

It's my understanding Mr. Hauser

was estranged from our victims.

Well, I've represented the Boutsikaris family for some time, and Liam knows, in spite of their schism, I'll do my best to protect him.

Let me guess, he didn't do it?

That said, he would be willing to come in and discuss your homicide investigation...

- Great.
- ...if you can guarantee he won't be charged with anything in connection with his import-export business.

That's a non-starter.
I've got a guy in the ER because of him.

Look, I got a warrant out for Liam's arrest.

If you really cared about your client...

His father was my client and friend.

I'm sorry.

Yeah. Let me know if I can help.

Knock, knock.

- They can't force me to stay.
- Aw, is that how you talk to your "in case of emergency" person?

Since when did you get back into snakes?

I'm not. Tell them I'll sign the discharge AMA.

They don't even know how you're awake.

You were given some serious sedatives.

What was it, fentanyl?

I take that in my morning coffee.

- Not something to brag about.
- Look,

I don't take sedatives anymore, okay?

If I can't wake up, it's like I'm trapped in there.

With Dad?



Someone's getting a call.

missed calls? Who the hell would...

It's, uh, nobody.


How did your nightmares get so intense?

Was it coming home? The copycat case?

Too much Dad on the brain?

Something like that.

It's okay, you can tell me.

- Whoa! Hey!

MARTIN (OVER PHONE): Hello, Malcolm. It's Dad.


MARTIN: Dad again, it's almost : ...

Hey, kiddo, it's your father.

Sun's beginning to set... Dad here.

I have thoughts on the case.

Does Mom know about this?
Of course not. If she knew, you wouldn't be in a hospital, you'd be in a morgue.

- She can never know.
- Have you lost your mind?

These nightmares, they're new, Ains.

It's like my subconscious is trying to show me something.

- Like what?
- Lost memories.

I think there's some missing time between when I found the girl in the box and when I called the cops.

- How much time?
- I don't know.

Dad's the only one who can help me understand it and remember it.

You think our serial killer father is gonna help you?

After everything he's done?

Don't do this.

Don't go back to him.

Don't let him in your mind.

What else can I do?

He was there, he knows the truth.

I have to go.

♪ ♪



Malcolm! You got my messages.

Come, let's solve a murder.

There's only one thing I want from you,

and that's the truth.

Tell me what you did to me.

All right, take a seat.

Ask me anything.

I've been remembering things about my childhood.

Good things?

The girl in the box.

After I found her, did you drug me to keep me from calling the police?

Malcolm, when was the last time you slept through the night?

You used chloroform, didn't you? On a ten-year-old.

They make it look so easy in the movies, but it's tricky stuff, you know?

The wrong dose can easily kill you, which is a long way of saying,

"No, of course I didn't drug you."

- The girl that I saw...
- Wasn't real.

I... I may have done some bad things, but I never did that.

Well, don't take my word for it, ask the police, ask your mom.

We all agreed there was no girl in a box.

They're wrong, and you're lying.
Goodbye, Dr. Whitly.

You're, uh, after a family annihilator?


Your suspect, this, uh, Liam character on the cover of The Daily News. Isn't this your profile?

My profile is constantly evolving.

Got it. And your method is a mix of psychology and on-the-fly improvisation. I love it.

Oh, I've always been fascinated by familicide.

To love one's family that much.

Perverted, yes.

Narcissistic? Sure.

But it's most certainly love.


What are you talking about?

You didn't kill us.

Well, I'm not an annihilator.

Love didn't drive me to kill anyone.

No. It drove me to have you.

I'm leaving.

And you're wrong.

It's not always about who they love.

It's about who loves them.

This annihilator was consumed by his hatred for Aristos, but...

...but Aristos didn't love them back.

What's that now?

Liam didn't care enough about his family to kill them.

He wanted out.
He-he even changed his name.

Our killer wanted in.

Oh, that's good.

That's why he made Aristos watch the others die.

He was punishing him, taking the one thing that Aristos never gave him, a family.

So maybe the killer saw Aristos as a father figure?


Maybe Aristos was his father.

I think we're looking for an illegitimate child.

Oh, my goodness, are we solving the crime right now?

I have to go.

It all moves so quickly.

Well, let me know what happens.

Remember, my door is always open.

- Gil. It wasn't Liam.
- Bright, listen...

BRIGHT: The snakes, the killer was using them to frame Liam, annihilate the black sheep of the family by having him take the fall for the crime.

- Liam took the fall, all right.
- What?


Jumped from the top of his father's building.

Family annihilators usually take their own lives, right?

Guess he does fit the profile.

Gil, Liam wasn't our killer.

Give us a second, Bright.

The Boutsikaris were killed by someone who loved the family and who wanted their love in return.

- Liam didn't care about either.
- Excuse me. Sorry.

- What the hell are you doing?
- I'm working the case.

Our case just went splat.

The brass wants to close it and move on.

Well, they're wrong.
The killer is still out there.

An illegitimate child,

I'm sure of it. He could've pushed Liam off the building.

All right, take a breath, kid.

I don't need to take a breath, and I don't need sleep, and I don't care if I seem crazy.

- I'm right.
- Bright.

You want to be a part of this team or not?

Of course I do. You know that, but I also want to find this killer.

Let me run this down.

There were payments.

I went through Aristos's finances.

Over the last month, he sent a set of payments to an anonymous recipient.

You know, I thought that it was Liam, but maybe...

He tried to pay off the annihilator.

I can buy you a few hours.

Go to Aristos' lawyer.

I want to know who he was writing checks to.

Mr. Littman?


Sorry to barge in like this, but we had a few questions come up.

Regarding Liam? I heard.

When we spoke, I had no idea he was suicidal.

Oh, we're not sure he was.

We think Liam was killed by the same person that murdered his family.

Possibly an illegitimate child.

Bank records show that you made payments for Aristos to an anonymous recipient.

Do you know who he was paying?

GIRL: Dad, we're hungry.

LITTMAN: I'm-I'm coming, sweetie.


Those payments were small loans, not some kind of hush money.

Aristos was a family man.

How long did you work for him?


He was like a mentor?


All this is because of him.

- GIRL: Dad!
- Oh, my-my kids really are starving. Give me one second?


- Do you want some, too?
- I'm hungry.


Bright, what is it?

He fits the profile.

He's the right age to be Aristos's son, he's exhibiting multiple stress reactions, and he's still protective of the victim.

But it makes no sense. You'd have to hate Aristos

- to torture him like that.
- Not for the annihilator.

You have to love them like family.

I'm sorry. They're going berserk.

Can we talk tomorrow?

We just have a few more questions, Mr. Littman.

BRIGHT: You said Aristos was a family man, but, come on, his family hated him.

Hey, don't-don't say that.

The man's dead.

Daddy, can I go swing now?

Did you get enough to eat?


She has vitiligo.

Yeah. She's self-conscious, but the doctor says it's harmless.

You know, it runs in the family.

Aristos had it, too.

BRIGHT: Which makes sense.

So you're his son.

Did Aristos know?
Is that why he hired you?


I sought him out.

Worked for him for years.

He had no idea.

Finally, I got up the nerve to tell him.

I thought... he'd welcome me with open arms.

Wrote me a check for grand and told me to get out of his life.


DANI: Why don't you come down to the station with us?

Your family doesn't have to find out like this.

They're never gonna find out.



The food. You poisoned them when we showed up.

You knew we were onto you.

Gil! Littman poisoned himself and his family.

Bright how long we got?

They are already unconscious...ten minutes before they are dead, five for the girls.

We need an ambulance at Sycamore Lane.

DANI: What do we do?


Littman poisoned the Boutsikaris family with a high dose of metoprolol.
It stopped their hearts.

I'm thinking he used the same thing on them.

- What do they need?
- Uh... a jump start, a real kick!

Uh... atropine!

I have a medkit in the car.
Go, go, go, go.

Jab them in the leg. Soft tissue.

How long before it works?

BRIGHT: I don't know.
It depends on the dose.

- There you go!

There you go. Okay?

Oh. Hey. Hey.

It's okay. You're all right.

- You're all right.
- Honey, are you okay?


(WEAKLY): Don't-don't...don't do it.

I don't want to live.

I know.


- ♪ Ooh... ♪

You saved that family today.

As a part of this team, you should be proud of yourself.



♪ Oh, oh... ♪

Kid, what do I need to know?

How bad is it?

You don't have to worry about me.

I can do the job.

(SIGHS): Actually...

it's the place I feel most normal.

I need it.


That's not a good thing.

Nobody should need this.

Why'd you come back, Bright?

You could have gone anywhere, stayed away from New York and your father's legacy.

Why come home?

You can only run away from your past for so long.

And, you know... home is where the heart is.

Here's to family.

♪ ♪

You'll, uh...call me in on another case?


One hundred percent.


(GROANS) Good night, Gil.

GIL: Hey, what's that? One drink

- and you're falling down?
- I'm fine.

It's fine.

They, uh, must have given me...

Ativan at the hospital.

That or a antihistamine.

Something's reacting with the alcohol.

But I'm fine.

No, no, no, no. No.

Bright, you are not getting yourself home like this.

(SIGHS) Powell.

Little help here, please.

♪ ♪

You know, you didn't have to escort me.

I told you, I was just gonna come home and sleep.

Were you, though?

- BRIGHT: Yeah.

You sure do have a lot of blades.

BRIGHT (GRUNTS): Uh... blunt force weapons, as well.

The morning star, uh, is from the th century.

I... guess it's good to have hobbies.

Is this a parakeet?

Yeah. Don't make it weird.

How do you sleep like this?

Eh. Who says I sleep?

These are for the night terrors.

What do you do when you... have company?

Well, I've never slept with anyone.

I mean, I'm not a...

(CHUCKLES): I mean, I've had s*x.

Plenty of s*x.

I get it. I got it. (CLEARS THROAT)


Are you having some trouble?

My hand-to-eye coordination is a little bit lacking.

I can see that.

Can I help you?

- That'd be great.
- Okay.

Thank you.

(WHISPERS): You're welcome.


- Uh, so, uh... is this the... craziest thing you've ever seen?

Not even close.



Good night, Bright.


♪ ♪

JESSICA (DISTORTED, ECHOING): Martin, is everything...

Look who came and visited me in the cellar.

JESSICA: Oh, Malcolm.

You know you're not allowed in Dad's hobby room.

Don't be too hard on the little guy.

I think he was sleepwalking.

JESSICA: Is he all right?
Did he hurt himself?

Now, don't fret, Jessie. He's fine.


MARTIN: I doubt he'd even remember this

- in the morning.
- Oh...

(WHISPERS): Sweet dreams, my love.


- Mm, my loves.
- Mm.


(WEAKLY): Mom...

Good night, Mommy.



(WEAKLY): I saw a girl.

I saw her.

No, Malcolm.

No, the girl...was only a dream.

It was all just a dream.







How long have you been here?


Tell me about the girl in the box.

(GROANS): Oh, this again.


There wasn't any girl.

There couldn't be.

There was. I remember her.

- Your dreams.
- They're not dreams.

They're memories.

After I found her, you drugged me.

- And that gave you just enough time to...
- To what, kill her?


Chop her up?

And what did you do?

During this... missing time.

I don't know.



Be careful, Malcolm.

If you didn't call the cops after you found the girl, then how long did it take you to make that call?

Days? Weeks?


How many other people died?

And why can't you remember?

Perhaps it's better if you don't.

♪ ♪


Don't worry, Dr. Whitly.

I plan to find out.


Good for you.

♪ ♪


You asked me to call.

JESSICA: He came back?

Yeah, he just left.

Thank you, David.

That's good to know.