Hey everybody. Welcome back to more coverage of Outer Banks — the show that is really eight different shows all mashed together. It’s the trifle of programs. So grab your spork and let’s dive in.
When last we left off, Ward was watching dozens of federal agents descend upon his mansion. This is, of course, not at all how rich, white people are arrested. Instead, their lawyers negotiate a convenient time for them to appear in court and turn themselves over to police custody.
I’m pretty sure that if your house has more than five bathrooms the police aren’t even able to come inside. They just have to stand at the front door and wait to be invited in like they’re vampires.
Back in jail, John B learns that all his charges have been dropped, and he will be expected to testify against Rafe and Ward. As an apology, the cop that beat up John B returns his vintage VW van. That’s an “interesting” redemption arc for the officer who attacked an innocent juvenile.
Anyway, John B drives through town and is greeted by everyone. Word of his innocence has spread rapidly — except for his friends, who are apparently the last to know. John B arrives home and they all have a group hug. There seem to be a lot more group hugs in shows and movies than my own personal experience. Are folks really out there ganging up on their hugs like this? Let me know.
Over at Ward’s house, he demands that the sheriff get all the investigators out of his home. Authorities continue room to room, gathering evidence while Ward learns that his son is wanted for murder. I’m sure Rafe is off somewhere practicing his impression of the Joker from The Dark Knight.
Meanwhile, returning hero Topper returns Sarah to John B’s house, where they all exchange stories of their recent near-death experiences. Sarah balks at telling her former love interest that she and John B are “married.” The show treats this as awkward, but they’re not really married, right? They have a sort of informal verbal contract, but you can’t just say a thing and it be real. This isn’t magic.
Things are equally rough for Pope, as Kiara expresses regret over their sleeping together. They agree to be friends, but Pope is left devastated. Kiara really should have been upfront about her apprehensions before she deflowered Pope. He’s out here trying to locate a hidden treasure, and Kiara is messing with the man’s emotions. I don’t like it.
Things worsen as Pope’s father is attacked by one of Limbrey’s goons in search of the special key that Pope discovered. Pope explains the chain of events that led up to his father’s beating. A man of the world, Pope’s dad knows that if someone crossed state lines to beat his ass, there’s probably something valuable at stake. He instructs Pope to consult his great-grandmother about the origins of the key and the possible treasure that it unlocks.
We then learn that Limbrey’s henchman is actually her half brother, the product of one of their father’s affairs. Limbrey cites a nonspecific medical condition that will cause her to die in the near future. It’s clear that she has the same illness as the family from The Fall of the House of Usher. Old, wealthy Southern families always end up with that Fall of the House of Usher disease. I think it’s a byproduct of too many mint juleps.
Ward escapes when his wife drives through a car wash with him hidden in the trunk. He sneaks out with an elaborate disguise — a single baseball cap.
I know this is a side effect of all the Marvel movies where Captain America — a massive, beautiful man with an ass like two Christmas hams — goes undercover by donning just a cap and sunglasses. It’s ridiculous. Have you seen how shirts fit Chris Evans? He has a muscle butt. You need a little bit more in the disguise department to blend in.
Anyway, Ward finds Rafe and immediately resumes the touching of Rafe’s face. He loves it.
Ward gives Rafe a big wad of cash and instructions on how to escape the country. Rafe leaves. I’d like to bring to your attention that this exchange occurs in the home of Rafe’s drug dealer. Here are the two most likely scenarios of what happens next:
1. Rafe holds up the money and tells his dealer, “I’ll have all the drugs, please.”
2. The drug dealer beats Rafe senseless, takes his money, and then turns him in for a reward.
The point I’m trying to make is that Ward could not have placed his son in any more immediate danger unless he mentioned that a new PS5 was embedded inside Rafe’s skull.
The drug dealer agrees to help Rafe escape and takes him deep into the swamp. Not surprisingly, Rafe is led into an ambush and quickly apprehended by the police. There is no honor amongst thieves.
Pope visits his great-grandmother to seek info about the key. Pope learns that he is a descendant of Denmark Tanny and rightful heir to the treasure. As I mentioned in a past recap, the showrunners have realized halfway through the season that Pope has the most interesting storyline, so they’re just going to shift focus over to him as much as possible.
Later, Pope and the gang are hanging out at his family’s restaurant, and Limbrey just walks up and asks for the special key. That’s a bold move, I guess. Didn’t even come up with a plan. They just put in the Google driving directions.
In a relatively brilliant bit of planning, John B has another key that he claims to be the special key to the treasure. He exchanges a fake key for the evidence incriminating Ward. Cool.
John B hands the evidence over to the police, and the full extent of Ward’s criminal actions are revealed. Everyone begins celebrating Ward’s downfall in front of Sarah, which is a little inconsiderate. That’s her dad. Read the room, y’all. You can simply be happy about something on the inside.
With an arrest imminent, everyone races over to Ward’s house. Sarah wants to be there for her sister. The police bear down to apprehend Ward. He responds to intense pressure the same way all great men have throughout history — he is drinking on a boat.
Wards gives a tearful confession. Sarah begs him to turn himself over to the police. Then… the boat explodes.
Sarah is overwhelmed with emotion, and Topper arrives to comfort her as John B looks on coldly. Wow. Not sure what I was expecting, but an exploding yacht was not one of the possibilities.
Well, Ward’s “dead.” I mean, he definitely isn’t. They could bring him back easily if they needed to. Speaking of, episode 7 begins with a video message that Ward recorded for his family before the explosion. Dead characters on this show are always leaving behind clues and recordings. It’s incredible.
Anyway, Ward confesses to killing John B’s dad and takes the rap for the murder of the dead sheriff. This is enough for the charges against Rafe to disappear, which isn’t exactly how things work. They have physical evidence and witness testimony showing that Rafe is a murderer. You don’t just get someone to tag you out of a murder conviction. Why does marriage and criminal justice operate on the honor system in the Outer Banksiverse?
Shockingly, Rafe manages to smooth things over a bit with Sarah. Ya know, for when he very recently tried to drown her. And that was after he shot her. That’s a shooting and a drowning. Sarah’s more upset with John B for expressing relief that his father’s killer and the man actively trying to murder him blew up.
For reasons, Sarah breaks up with John B, and a Fleet Foxes song plays, telling us to be sad. Sarah immediately goes to visit Topper, and a song by The xx begins playing. It’s the one that was in all the commercials for the most recent Winter Olympics. It doesn’t tell us to feel any sort of way, other than nostalgic for figure skating.
Suddenly, all our characters are really concerned about school and the big bonfire. Pope’s history teacher shows him the newly discovered diary of Denmark Tanny. Inside, they read that the mysterious cross related to the special key was on the sunken ship that carried the gold treasure. That last sentence, whew. There’s a remarkable amount of silliness in that last sentence. I’m going to have to read some Cormac McCarthy after this to level myself out. Otherwise I’ll start making balloon animals.
Also, who has the gold now? Ward had it last, assuming the Bahama authorities who recovered it didn’t keep it all. I find it hard to believe that the harbor patrol came across a boat full of gold bars, and didn’t have at least a few questions for Ward. You can get taken down for trying to import knockoff Bratz dolls. There is no telling how customs handles pirate treasure.
Luckily, great minds think alike, and Ward’s widow asks the same question. Ward didn’t leave behind the details on where the gold was being stored or any of the overseas accounts related to it.
Rafe doesn’t know where the gold is, but in a nice piece of visual storytelling he has started wearing his late father’s blazer. He is ready to step into the role of patriarch of the family. Let’s see how having a homicidal adolescent steering the ship goes.
You guessed it. Poorly! Rafe learns that the family business is in severe debt, and they have one month to come up with $1.7 million. He responds by hyperventilating and punching a hole through the wall, because men are not taught healthy ways to process emotion. Shout out to all my guys out there who have zero idea how to deal with their feelings! It’s terrible!
With the bonfire upon us, John B immediately finds a young lady vying for his affection. She grabs his drink, takes a big swig, and says, “You weren’t afraid of my germs last year.”
Yeah. Well, it’s been QUITE THE YEAR, MA’AM! Maybe don’t just drink after everybody! Maybe some of us are trying to DO RIGHT and maybe have our own bonfire celebrations safely. And this woman is out here spreading germs and selfishly taking everybody’s drinks and boyfriends like a dog in a manger.
Sarah spots John B talking to Typhoid Mary, and she decides to get drunk. Like, bachelorette party in Panama City drunk. I’m talking “you’re gonna have to remove me from this Denny’s” drunk. This is some “my dad blew up on a boat” level drinking.
Seriously though, if someone going through a personal tragedy looks at you and says, “I wanna dance tonight,” get them out of there. Because the night’s going to end with someone needing stitches and a public defender.
John B spies Sarah hanging with Topper, and she sees John B with that other girl, so a confrontation erupts into a brawl. It’s a full-on donnybrook at the bonfire, which is to be expected, really.
John B and the gang head back to his house where they are met by a gang of expert archers gathered by Limbrey’s brother. We saw these guys earlier. They definitely said no to the vaccine before taking a bovine hormone somebody at the gym said would cure Covid. These guys have more bumper stickers than books. All of these guys have ruined a pair of pants after shouting too hard at a school board meeting.
Anyway, Pope hands over the key to avoid death by arrow. Why Limbrey didn’t deploy her team of skilled bowhunters earlier is beyond me. It seems that would be my solution for every problem. Especially my lengthy rivalry with the Sheriff of Nottingham.
The episode ends with Rafe spiraling into coke-fueled paranoia and accusing his stepmom of knowing where the gold is. This is interrupted by Limbrey, so asks to see the “island room” that the special key’s secret message refers to.
Sarah returns home to find the door to the house open. Inside, the island room is torn apart. Beyond an opening in one of the walls is what appears to be the rumored cross that leads to another treasure. Lots of treasures lying around everywhere. It’s getting difficult to keep track of all the treasures on this show.
See you next episode.