“Janet King” recap (1.2): Magical Mystery Murder Tour


Hello and thanks to everyone who read last week’s recap. I want to devote some time to the Marta Dusseldorp interview that people were discussing in the comment section, so the actual recap segment of this recap is going to be short and sweet.

Previously on Janet King, our heroine went back to work as a prosecutor after a year of maternity leave. Upon her return, she was immediately trounced by an unfair judge in a child porn case, which only increased her ambition to win in a high-profile case against former police commissioner Steven Blakely. Blakely is charged with giving his wife three syringes of morphine in ten minutes, and when Janet suggested that that sounds more like “manslaughter” than a “whoopsie daisy” Blakely disappeared, leaving behind something that looked suspiciously like a suicide note.

In the immediate aftermath of Blakely’s disappearance, Janet’s boss suggests she might want to take the rest of the day off to nurse her tender, wounded pride.

janetking2.1I was going to photoshop Grumpy Cat’s face over his, but it appears that God beat me to that.

She is also accosted by Owen, who gloats over her current predicament. I love that Janet’s response is to look both annoyed and somewhat gratified that not everyone thinks they need to spare her Feelings.

So remember how last week Lina Badir was trying to prove that any of the girls in her massive stockpile of confiscated porn were actually underage? Well this week, Owen makes the helpful suggestion to just stick a picture of a toddler in amongst the rest.


Lina: But isn’t that…wrong?
Owen: Not as wrong as letting a pedophile walk free because you’re unwilling to bend the rules.

And as much as Owen is an oily bastard, I think his character is an entertaining and necessary foil to the other prosecutors’ saintliness.

I have a very specific reaction to Janet’s helper lawyer, Richard Stirling: I like him so much I wish he was a lady. I guess more than anything I just relate to his good intentions and bumbling execution, especially when it comes to women he’s attracted to. Case in point: Tatum, who I know was a regular on the original Crownies show but who looks like a 12-year-old.

janetking2.3I don’t care what the ID says, I’m not serving you alcohol.

So apparently they’re exes and things ended on a bad note and then she tells him her exact gym routing which I’m sure will be a vital clue in some later episode.

Back to the Blakely case, the cops find his car abandoned at the same spot where he scattered his wife’s ashes. So if you’ve never seen a cop show before, you now believe that Blakely killed himself.

That’s certainly what Janet believes, and of course she blames herself for pushing him over the edge. When she gets home to Ash, her guilt and self-doubt surface, and I’m going to quote the actual dialogue, because I think it’s pretty central to understanding Janet’s arc.


Janet: Will the kids still love me when they know what I do?
Ash: Are you kidding? You put away bad guys! Why would you worry about that?
Janet: Because I want them to grow up learning about tolerance, forgiveness, acceptance. My whole job is about guilt and blame and punishment.

And then Ash hugs her and gives her a glass of wine because they have a sweet, functional relationship. (Yes I wish they would make out with each other’s faces, but this just isn’t that show.)

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