Rizzoli & Isles season 5 left off with Jane and Maura taking a road trip (while engaging in a cheesy singalong in the process), solving the murder of a superhero bigamist and presenting former homeless teenager and future BCU student Tasha with the Barry Frost Memorial Scholarship. If none of this sounds familiar, you may want to check out our Rizzoli & Isles 5×18 recap. Otherwise, let’s dive into Rizzoli & Isles 6×01.
A shot rings out
Rizzoli & Isles 6×01 begins with one of the show’s patented foot chases, which kills two birds with one stone by simultaneously giving Angie Harmon and Jordan Bridges a workout AND being cheaper to shoot than a car chase. The brother/sister duo follow the object of their pursuit down into a subway station, where he disappears. Jane and Frankie hurry onto the platform (so that’s how this episode got its name) and separate to cover more ground. As the camera zooms in on Jane, a shot rings out, screams erupt… and we jump back in time to one day earlier.
Jane is at Maura‘s house – which is hardly shocking, because they basically live together – talking about new assistant medical examiner Kent Drake, who’s doing a six-month rotation in Boston before moving to the Springfield office. More specifically, Jane’s trying to convince her BFF that Kent is a superhero on account of his name, but needless to say, Maura’s not buying it. Cut to Mama Rizzoli wheeling in another thing nobody’s buying: an impressively ugly chair that Jane’s Uncle Enzo is getting rid of (I can’t imagine why). “That is horrible!” Jane exclaims. “Well, even if it is, it’s free,” Angela retorts. Luckily, it won’t be haunting the halls of Maura’s modest mansion – Angela got it for Frankie’s apartment, but she needs help transporting it.
Impressively, barely two minutes of Rizzoli & Isles 6×01 pass before Jane and Maura get called to a crime scene and deploy their signature “Rizzoli!” “Isles!” phone-answering schtick. We’re off to a good start.
“Everyone would notice the monkeys”
At the scene, Jane, Maura, Frankie and Korsak determine that the unidentified female victim was killed elsewhere, wrapped in a rug and tossed in a dumpster by two people who must have been able to blend in with the regular population. This assessment eliminates clowns, Siamese twins, centaurs, pirates and organ-grinders (“Everyone would notice the monkeys,” Maura points out). Their process of elimination might explain why more than two-thirds of murders that occurred in Boston in 2014 remained unsolved by year’s end, just saying.
Back at the M.E.’s office, newbie Kent is already vacuuming the rug for fibers when Jane and Maura walk through the door. Remember way back in season 1 when Maura wore those awkward toe sneakers to run the Massachusetts Marathon? (If not, you’re out of luck, because that episode will probably never, ever air on TV again in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing.) Well, Kent’s sporting a pair of those, and for a show that’s had some problems with continuity, Season 6 Jane’s reaction is impressively in line with Season 1 Jane’s – that is to say she’s disgusted. After she leaves, Kent asks Maura if she’s always like that. “Yes, in the very best way possible,” Maura responds. Hashtag “gayzzoli.”
Jane and Korsak follow a lead and end up at the Internet Village, where they find out the name of their victim (Mona) and learn that she worked at the establishment until three week earlier. Her former co-worker shows them a picture of Mona and her boyfriend, nicknamed Spike, before admitting, “I never liked him, but with your friends, it’s hard to say something, you know?” Jane thinks back to every man Maura’s ever dated and says “Mmm-hm.” (Side note: Who knew Internet cafes were still a thing?)
Jane and Maura may have been saved by the bell earlier, but they could only escape helping Angela move that godawful chair for so long. When they get to Frankie’s apartment, they’re in for a surprise: He still lives in the same building, but he’s renting a much nicer unit. When he tells them he was waiting to share the news until he fixed the place up, Jane berates him for keeping secrets and he counters, “Come on, Janie, like you don’t have any secrets.” …Not unless being hopelessly in love with Boston’s Chief Medical Examiner counts.
Meanwhile, those holding their breaths until Frankie reacts to the chair need wait no longer.
Frankie: Ma, this chair is –
Angela: Free! Free covers a lotta ugly.
More than just a pretty face
Back to the case. Techie Nina combs through Mona’s phone records and discovers numerous calls to someone named Cecil. Could this be the mysterious Spike? As Nina phrases it, “If my name was Cecil, almost anything would be preferable.” Jane, Korsak and Frankie head to Cecil’s apartment, but he gets away via the fire escape. Well, now we have some context for the foot chase that opened Rizzoli & Isles 6×01. Jane and Frankie follow their suspect into the subway station, but this time we see what happens from Frankie’s perspective. Turns out he’s the one who shoots, but Cecil isn’t the victim. Rather, Frankie hits another man on the platform, Sean Hughes, whom he claims had a gun. …Only problem is that nobody can find it. The arrival of officers from the Internal Affairs Department is imminent, but Maura has a plan. She claims Frankie’s in shock and brings over a sedative to calm him down – and, of course, to buy some time, because he won’t be able to talk to IAD until its effects wear off. That Maura Isles is not just a pretty face.
At the hospital, Jane and Korsak come up with a theory: Spike was meeting the man Frankie shot on the platform, and the two of them were responsible for dumping Mona’s body. Of course, there’s still the problem of the gun that may or may not exist. Jane attempts to investigate the shooting under IAD’s radar, but there’s a snag: The video from the security camera that should have recorded the events on the platform is blank. Now how are they going to clear Frankie’s name? One thing’s for sure: As Angela tells a worried Frankie, “Jane won’t stop until she gets to the bottom of things.”
Tech wizardry & repurposed coffee
To make a bad situation even worse, the shooting victim dies. Jane and Maura can’t be present during his autopsy because of their connections to Frankie, but the ever-resourceful Dr. Isles finds a loophole in the form of a live feed from the camera set up in the autopsy room. Through a mix of tech wizardry and repurposed coffee, she concludes that Sean and Mona both consumed a protein drink made for computer programmers. That’s all Jane needs to connect the two cases and thereby legitimately look into what happened on the platform… with a little help from a judge who owes Korsak a favor. She and Korsak head to Sean’s house and find something puzzling: multiple routers labeled with codes that correspond to subway stations.
There may not be any security camera footage from the platform, but luckily Maura isn’t the only member of the team showing off her resourcefulness in Rizzoli & Isles 6×01. Nina scours social media for videos of the shooting and is able to prove there was a gun, but someone took it. Now all they need to do is figure out the identity of the mystery man. By deploying some more tech wizardry, Maura finds out that his name is John Stanton and his house was seized by the transportation association because it was in the path of a subway expansion. Meanwhile, Nina examines the routers at Sean’s house, discovers they’re being pinged and gets the address of the… uh, pinger, who is none other than the illustrious Cecil. It turns out that John, Sean, Spike and Mona were planning to hack into the subway’s wireless routers and crash a train at the station where Sean was shot.
In exchange for letting IAD take the credit for solving the case, Jane’s able to get Frankie off the hook. There’s only one small problem: John is still out there, but not for long. With a little help from Nina, Jane and Korsak track him down before he can cause any more havoc.
After saving the day, Jane, Maura and Korsak congregate at Frankie’s apartment with Angela, where Jane makes her peace with the ugly chair, Frankie gives everyone gifts to show his appreciation and Korsak plays out Rizzoli & Isles 6×01 with a tune on his brand new ukulele. All’s well that ends well.