Last week, Cop Craft took a more comedic turn. Now the show is back to punch you in the gut, emotionally.
Summary: We start in an expensive hotel suite full of high-class prostitutes, a group that includes an undercover Tilarna. She’s called down to see her first client, who is duly arrested by Kei and the rest of his police squad but not before he creepily paws at Tilarna, much to her dismay. The client turns out to be one Cole Mozeleemay, a prominent politician and candidate for mayor of San Teresa. There’s a major scandal, and Mozeleemay denies everything in front of the cameras while trying to sort his situation out with the help of his scheming wife Marla.
Following the raid, Tilarna befriends one of the sex workers let out on bail, a fellow Semanian named Zoey. The pair hang out, have a montage, and bond over Zoey’s photography hobby, but Tilarna never lets on that she’s a police officer. Meanwhile, Zoey is supplying Mozeleemay with information about the brothel’s clientele in exchange for money to support her high rent and lifestyle, and the list leaks to the media with a bunch of fake names included to cloud the investigation and take pressure off of Mozeleemay.
When Tilarna and Kei learn that Zoey is responsible for leaking the club’s client list, Tilarna goes to her apartment to confront her about it, but Zoey is shot by a sniper just after Tilarna reveals that she’s a cop. Zoey dies, and though she and Kei don’t have solid evidence, they know Mozeleemay is behind the murder, because her death and silence mean that he’s now protected from prosecution. Tilarna vows to take revenge for her new short-lived friend, and the episode ends.
Analysis: I suspected Cop Craft would come back with a heavy episode, and it sure did. We’ve already seen Tilarna open up to Kei and vice versa, and also to Cecil. This episode, Tilarna makes a fast friend in Zoey and loses her just as quickly, either at the moment Tilarna admits that she’s been lying to her about not being a cop or when Zoey dies. I didn’t expect it to end the way it did, either, with Zoey’s murder, although the episode does set it up so that you can see it coming in hindsight.
I also liked the establishment of another running villain. Or I should say pair of villains, because while Cole Mozeleemay is undoubtedly a bastard, his wife Marla is downright murderous. Even though she doesn’t outright admit to it, it’s implied that she had Zoey killed to protect her husband’s political future. That old Lady Macbeth character type never dies, does it? Though in this case, she’s having to clean up her horny, cheating husband’s mess. I expect these two will figure into the show later on, since Tilarna now has it in for Mozeleemay.
More than anything, I thought this episode cemented Tilarna’s character. She’s serious and even stubborn in her sense of duty, but she’s also ready to befriend anyone she considers worthy of her friendship and is fiercely loyal to those people. We’ve seen her act that way with both Cecil and Kei, even if both Tilarna and Kei might be loath to admit that they consider each other friends. That nice dynamic between the two is here as well, with Kei’s cynical attitude clashing with Tilarna’s idealism.
I also liked the bits of criminal procedure we get in this episode, with Kei and his supervisor and colleague talking about what kind of evidence they’d need to provide the prosecutor to convince a judge to sustain a case against Mozeleemay. This also involves Tilarna, who as usual is frustrated by all the legal process that seems to protect this corrupt politician. Of course, that same process protects potentially innocent suspects. But this is a cop show, so of course it’s going to dump on defense attorneys and defendants. Go watch a few episodes of Law & Order for more of that attitude. Honestly, Cop Craft is probably a more legally accurate show than Law & Order. Low bar to clear, but still.
It is too bad that Zoey was killed off the same episode she was introduced — I felt like the show could have done more with her. Same goes for Vampire Lady from episode 5. Still, I liked this episode. Looking forward to the next episode coming soon. As usual, stay safe.