Director: Richard Laxton
Writer: Stephen Brady
Starring: Richard Dormer, Stanley Tucci, Sofie Grabol, Michael Gambon, Christopher Eccleston, Luke Treadaway, Jessica Raine, Nicholas Pinnock
Review: Episode 3 opens with Morton heading back to the murder scene but wait, much like when Vincent visited, there’s someone else in the house but this time, thankfully, no death. (Yet?) There he discovers some information about what the Professor was looking at but we still have no clue what it is beyond something related to scanning into the depths of the glacier.
The tension starts early this time out with Sheriff Dan because he learns that it’s Frank (his partner) who’s been sleeping with Elena, the seemingly object of his obsessive desires. Henry (Gambon) continues to break down, drinking too much, flipping between his own made-up characters in his head as he’s still not dealing well with shooting a man in the head in the opening episode. Ronnie’s undoubtedly revealed to be losing his mind after they discover the shop keeper tied up and locked in the back of his shop the next morning. He describes Ronnie as ‘possessed’ which could either be due to him not taking his anti-psychotic pills, or something to do with the mysterious Mammoth they dug up.
The kid in the tank, Liam, has a fit but we don’t know why or if it’s a reaction to his treatment. He’s stuck in there after going out in the cold when he shouldn’t have and they’re trying to save his feet from being amputated. But the question about that whole scenario is…why the heck did he get up and leap out the window? Was it just because no-one was there or didn’t he pick up that weird bone in the very opening credits as well? We’ll all have to go back and take a look…
The two guys who didn’t have rifles in the opener (to protect themselves from Polar Bears) turn up again discussing something or other. Are they hired hit-men or working for someone in the town? They’re definitely after whatever Professor Charlie was working on but now that’s in the possession of DCI Morton, for the moment, and he goes off to make acquaintance with Gambon’s Henry to see what he knows about events.
It’s interesting that in a town where someone has been murdered, it’s still not unusual for someone to be hanging around with a gun, which makes things difficult when you’re trying to work out who is good and bad. The one thing I do know is that people like to tell stories, almost everyone lies and they’re all out for something for themselves. It’s a somewhat self-righteous, paranoid town with mysterious undertones that are starting to drive everybody a little mad. Isn’t it great?
Darren Boyd’s Markus turns up with his other half again, who slightly echo that finale couple of True Detective, and they know a lot and feel like they’re pulling the strings of their village puppets. Basically spreading rumours and knowing more than they should. As we aim to conclude, we head back over to the Ronnie chase and his ever-decreasing mental circle. While Frank and Dan are out hunting down another possible suspect, his partner finds Frank’s bloody T-Shirt from the feisty encounter with Elena and back in town they quickly conclude that Frank might well be the killer.
We then flash between that discovery plus Ronnie and his daughter on the run, who find a hut with Huskey Dogs to hide away in. Ronnie heads off to find supplies and eventually ends up bringing back the mammoth tusk to their camp, seemingly gathering the ‘precious’ he’s somewhat attached to. It gives the impression of having a ‘power’ but whether that’s psychosomatic or alien, I guess we’ll find out.
And then the finale, as Sheriff Anderssen is already burning with the discovery of Frank and Elena sleeping together, his unhealthy obsession boils over to extremes with a horrific shower beating scene. It reveals his hidden anger but doesn’t necessarily make him a killer either, just another soul in Fortitude who’s on the edge. There’s countless questions still lingering but I guess the important one is still…what did Charlie find and who killed him?