‘Happy Valley’ season 2 episode 4 review: Will Frances kill Catherine for Tommy Lee Royce?

Happy ValleyNow that coworkers in John’s office have connected the dots between the arson case and Vicky’s death he is worried that they will uncover the fact that he was the one behind her murder. “Happy Valley” has never been a happy show, but the mess that John has made for himself to end an affair is astounding. Things will likely only get worse for him since Catherine has been cleared of killing Tommy Lee Royce’s mom and while the detectives around him don’t see John for what he is, Catherine is a lot more perceptive then most.

Catherine gets home from a late shift at work and there’s a birthday present from Ryan wrapped on the front door step. Who is it from? There’s a card that Clare finds stuffed inside the box, and when Catherine reads it and sees that it’s from Tommy, she takes the very expensive gift away from Ryan. It causes tension between Catherine and Ryan, but even more then that she becomes focused on finding out who it is that left the gift on Tommy’s behalf. She takes the gift into the station to have it dusted for prints and to find out who he’s had contact with since being in prison. While Ryan is at school, Frances continues to fill his head with visions of a regretful father who wants to make things right with birthday gifts. Ryan brings this idea home about forgiveness for his dad, but Catherine shuts the talk down right quick. Unfortunately the idea has stuck with Ryan and he writes his dad a letter saying that he thinks his dad is truly sorry for what he did. In reality, Tommy never sent the gift, it was Frances all on her own, but it’s not enough for him. He still wants Frances to remove Catherine from Ryan’s life all together (by killing her) and if she doesn’t then he’s threatening to end their relationship.

John thinks he might be getting a break when his boss finds enough evidence to pull in Sean for these murders, but when his boss tells him that his number was found in Vicky’s phone he comes up with a terrible lie saying that she was a point of contact on another case years ago – remarkably, his boss buys it. When Sean is brought in, he denies knowing any of the women that were killed or having ever met any of them. The police seem to have enough evidence to pin these murders on Sean, but one of John’s co-workers is still not convinced that Vicky is one of the victims of this particular killer. To top of John’s crappy day, he comes home to find that his wife has put his bags out on the sidewalk, changed the locks and told him to go and live with his mom.

It was a interesting admission from Clare’s new boyfriend, Neil, that he knew Vicky from years back when his marriage fell apart, saying that they were lovers until he ended the relationship and she started to blackmail him. At one point he couldn’t keep up with the payments so Vicky humiliated him – same story as John, but without the murder. Even more interesting is that Clare promised not to tell Catherine, but later pushes him to tell her himself about his past with Vicky – of course he refuses.

Things are really starting to heat up on “Happy Valley” and we only have two episodes left! If there’s one thing we don’t like about this show it’s that the seasons are too short, because we want way more of this show. Is Frances really going to consider killing Catherine to keep her relationship with Tommy? Just when we think that the Tommy character can’t get any darker then he already is he manages to surprise us. Episode grade: A-

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