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Stalker - Love Hurts - Review: "We have a serial killer"

Stalker's penultimate episode focussed on a murder and an attempted murder, but as the hour drew to a close, it became clear that both cases were far from solved.

The episode begins with a woman named Francine Johnson being stabbed to death. Francine was stalked by her boyfriend John, who got out of prison a few weeks ago. However, since he was in another state, he couldn't be the killer. Meanwhile, Janice has another case. A woman named Pam suspects her ex-husband Darren violated the restraining order by leaving gifts and stalking her. Later that night, Pam walks to her house, but is confronted by another man. He says he ruined her life and attacks her, but Pam manages to make it to her house. The man who attacked her was not her ex-husband, but her former co-worker Clay, who was fired last month for sexual harassment. Clay says he just wanted to talk to her, but he didn't mean to attack her. Also, Darren's car was spotted in the area, but Darren claims he is over Pam. He knows things didn't end well and has now joined a love and sex addiction support group. However, Pam is once again attacked in her house, and this time she is almost stabbed with her letter opener.

Both Clay and Darren have an alibi for the night. Darren was at a dinner with some people from the support group, who confirm his alibi. However, they also say that Darren has had a rough time because his wife cheated on him. Pam denies ever having cheated and she only said so, because she was upset about Darren's cheating. The case becomes even weirder when Clay is attacked while jogging and is left for dead. As Jack and Janice look at surveillance footage, they see Darren's car parked nearby. They head to his apartment and find a wall full of photos from Pam. Jack also finds medication for bipolar disorder and wonders if he's in a manic state. Meanwhile, Pam is doing volunteer work at a church, but hears some strange noises. She heads inside and sees the priest lying on the ground. Darren reveals he didn't mean to hurt him. He admits to sending her the gifts and just wanted to see her. He also hurt himself, but Pam manages to run away. With Jack and Janice arriving, Darren is arrested and Pam says she never knew he was sick.

However, something bothers Janice about the case and she has another look at the files. She later calls Vicky with her findings. When Pam was nearly killed with her letter opener, both Darren and Clay had an alibi. Pam also said Darren would never hurt her, so it must have been someone else. The case reminds Janice of the Francine Johnson murder, which had the same MO. She found an additional four murders with the same MO and says all stalkers attended a love and sex addiction support group. Vicky realizes they have a serial killer on the loose.

Elsewhere, Beth is not back at work yet and is not sure if she wants to. After all, she was Beth Davis but now everyone knows she is Michelle Webber. In the meantime, she keeps herself busy with two things. First of all, she flirts with Jack and Jack flirts back. Eventually, this leads to a heart-to-heart conversation between the two, in which Beth reveals she doesn't know what to do next. Jack says he hopes he's a part of her next chapter and the two of them kiss.

Also, per Vicky's request, Beth looks into an old case in which a man, Stan Gardner, was convicted for killing his wife. He always denied the murder and said he had an alibi, and after so many years, his alibi comes forward and corroborates it. Beth later confirms that she doesn't think Stan is the killer. She tells Vicky to have a new look at the case and start with her ex-husband Will. Will showed up at Vicky's office earlier in the hour to invite her for some drinks and finalize their divorce. Vicky knows Will slept with the victim and she gave him an alibi at the time. However, Vicky reveals that she and Will had a fight and the latter slept in the guest room. Vicky didn't see him until the next morning. She later has drinks with Will and asks if he's heard about Stan Gardner. She says she screwed up if Stan truly didn't kill his wife.

Obviously this story is far from over and will continue in Monday's series finale. This episode did a good job of setting it all up, although given that I already read the press release, it wasn't much of a surprise that a serial killer was involved. The stalking case of Pam was an interesting one, though I think she was really unlucky. After all, she was attacked three times this episode by three different people. We have seen two stalkers on this show before, but I think having three stalkers is a record. It will be interesting to see who the serial killer is in the next episode. I am currently suspecting the leader of the support group and Vicky's ex-husband Will. There must be a reason why Will suddenly shows up in Vicky's life. I'm glad he's not stalking her, because that would be too obvious. Making him a suspected murderer instead is quiet interesting.

My main criticism of this episode is Jack and Beth. I never wanted them to get romantically involved and I am still against that. Additionally, their flirting and eventual kiss felt so incredibly forced. They have never flirted before, so to suddenly see them flirting came out of nowhere. Yes, Jack might have protected Beth from Ray and saved her from him, but that still doesn't explain the fact that they suddenly care for one another. If we had gotten some more build-up to their kiss, I could have accepted it a bit better.

Lastly, I'm not ashamed to say that I didn't miss Ben in this episode. His character has been so underused this season that I don't care much about him. If Stalker had gotten a season 2, I wouldn't have minded Vicky being promoted to series regular.

What did you think about "Love Hurts"? How do you think the serial arc will continue on the next episode? Do you think that Will might be up to something? Who do you think the serial killer is? And lastly, how do you feel about the kiss between Jack and Beth? I would love to hear your comments in the comment section below.

Stalker airs its series finale this Monday at 9/8c on CBS. I hope it doesn't end in a cliffhanger. Here's a promo of the episode:

About the Author - Daniel van der Veer
Daniel van der Veer is a Dutch university student studying Psychology. On SpoilerTV he is a reviewer of NCIS, The 100, Stalker, Madam Secretary and the upcoming show American Odyssey. He also enjoys LOST, Arrow, NCIS: Los Angeles, NCIS: New Orleans, Nikita, The Blacklist, Scorpion and How To Get Away With Murder.
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