“Janet King” recap (1.3): Janet (Madam Crown if you’re nasty).


Sure enough, Dianne’s pockets contained Blakely’s blood, so the charge has just been bumped back up to murder. In the face of this new evidence, Dianne admits that she went to Blakely’s house and walked in the back door, when she found Blakely, lying in a pool of blood. She fled the scene and called an ambulance.


I am inclined to believe her version of events, but the prosecution goes on full steam ahead. I think a week ago Janet would have given closer consideration to the idea that Vaslich is telling the truth, but the cops want her to prosecute, Blakely’s kids want her to prosecute, and frankly she is tired of everyone yelling at her.

So she charges into court and insinuates that Dianne Vaslich killed Blakely because she was wracked with guilt. According to Janet, Vaslich blamed her poor parenting for her daughter’s prostitution and eventual murder. It’s a dirty, devastating blow. I wonder what Ash’s face would look like if she heard that Janet used the argument that bad parenting leads to murder.

JanetKing3.5 Probably like this.

Back to the bikie trial (I am practicing saying that with a straight face. No progress so far.) Tony “The Scary One” requests to see Janet, hoping to trade information for immunity. He says that ten years ago, Dianne Vaslich walked up to him at a bar, batted her eyelashes, and coyly suggested that he murder Steve Blakely for ten thousand dollars. He happily pocketed the money and but decided murdering the assistant commissioner of police might not be the best life choice for him. Owen and Janet squabble over who the bikie belongs to.

Janet: I need his evidence to get the Vaslich conviction.


Janet: Why are all the men in my life three years old?

Unwilling to give up the bikie, Owen goes up to the roof to blow off steam. There he runs into Rizzoli, and they have a very interesting exchange.

janetking3.6Dude, are you peeing?

Rizzoli implies that if Owen wants that big promotion he’s gunning for, he’ll give Janet the witness, since it’s in her power to advance his career. Awfully invested in Dianne Vaslich being convicted and no one looking any further into this case, aren’t we, Rizzoli. I smell a rat. Or a koala. Whatever they have there.

Janet has to ask the court for permission to call this new witness, which of course she gets, so this scene just wastes three minutes of valuable time. If Janet King took half the scenes it currently devotes to dry legal procedure and spent them character development (or Lina brushing her hair) the show would be much more full-bodied. I know the writers and actors all have the ability to explore some psychological terrain that is much more engaging than the intricacies of Australian case law.

On the flip side of that, a very interesting courtroom scene occurs in the bikie trial. Firstly, a judge rules the shooter’s confession inadmissible because the cop stood up, which apparently qualifies as “intimidation” if you are the most easily intimidated person in the world. Secondly, Owen tries to use the hand tattoo as evidence only to find that the entire rest of the gang went out and got identical tattoos. The thing that really stuck with me about this scene was that if it had been on Sons of Anarchy, I would have been rooting for the bikers.

But at least justice is served in the Vaslich case. Dianne and her son are convicted of murder and accessory, respectively, and everyone gives Janet a hearty pat on the back. Her triumph lasts about five minutes, because that very night Blakely’s body is discovered. The problem is, it’s discovered too far away for either of the Vasliches to have buried it.

Janetking3.7Gee, I wonder if everyone will blame me for this.

Next week: The plot thickens and Janet’s marriage fractures.

More you may like