Rizzoli & Isles 6×05 opens with Senior Criminalist Susie Chang collecting evidence at a crime scene, which is weird because the first scene of an R&I episode usually depicts either a murder or its aftermath. Could this be foreshadowing? As she gets ready to leave, she hears some suspicious noises in the alley behind her, but she brushes them off and gets into her vehicle, unaware of the car that follows her as she drives off. Read on for our full recap of Rizzoli & Isles 6×05.
A comrade falls
The next morning, Jane and Maura are being domestic at (Jane and) Maura’s house, as per uzh. While heading to the kitchen for her caffeine fix, Jane glances at the screen of Maura’s laptop: She’s researching high-frequency electro-pulse therapy, an expensive spa treatment that Jane offers to replicate with a battery and some jumper cables. Maura’s not keen, but she does manage to find an option that sparks Jane’s interest because it involves wine. All in all, a standard Rizzoli and Isles conversation, but the day is about to take a tragic and unexpected turn.
As they arrive at the crime scene, Jane’s trying to get Maura to agree to go to a Patriots game in exchange for being her date to the spa, but their banter soon tails off when they come face to face with a grim-looking Korsak. The reason for his demeanor? Susie Chang, the show’s beloved nudist, art scholar and diorama-builder (no, seriously) is no longer of this world.
At Susie’s trashed apartment, Frankie briefs Jane on the case: No evidence of forced entry and nothing amiss on security footage from the building. A shell-shocked Maura looks at the photographs on display before unzipping the body bag to see her slain colleague for herself. Her colleague, Kent Drake, details the findings of his examination, and Jane interjects when he refers to “the victim.”
Kent: Excuse me?
Jane: Her name. Susie.
I’m not crying, you’re crying.
To make matters worse, Korsak discovers evidence hidden in Susie’s apartment. Maura is adamant that she wasn’t the type to tamper with evidence, but she’s obligated to inform the state governor of the findings. As Susie’s direct supervisor, she recuses herself from the case and asks Kent to take the lead.
Socks or no socks?
That night at the Dirty Robber, Angela urges Jane and Maura to stop focusing on what they don’t know (what happened to Susie and whether she was dirty) and start thinking about what they do know, like her favorite food (mint chocolate chip ice cream) and her pet (the late Fluffy the lizard).
Angela: What did she prefer: Socks or no socks?
Jane: Who cares?
Angela: Exactly. You can know someone without knowing every little detail about them. Did you trust her?
Their moods are just starting to lighten when Maura gets a call from the governor that really puts a damper on things: As part of the effort to get ahead of the scandal, she’s suspended from duty effective immediately.
Alicyclic C10 hydrocarbons save the day
In Maura’s absence, Kent is running the crime lab. A defensive Jane blames him for Maura’s suspension and accuses him of trying to stage a coup, but he’s actually been working hard to untangle the case: He conducted Susie’s autopsy at 2:30 in the morning and even went through six months’ worth of cases to find out where the evidence found in his dead colleague’s apartment came from, but nothing is missing. He does have one lead to share, though: The lividity patterns on Susie’s body suggest she was wrapped up and possibly moved. Remember that security footage from earlier? Turns out that it showed Susie’s car pulling into the parking lot, but the lot was too dark to see the identity of the driver. After a run-in with a garbage man, Korsak tracks down a plastic tarp that has traces of blood and hair. Looks like Susie’s killer transported her body in her own car, staged the crime scene at the apartment and planted the evidence. As Jane puts it, “Somebody’s going to a lot of trouble to make Susie look dirty” – but why?
When Jane takes a look at Kent’s report, she sees that his examination of the tarp yielded more than Susie’s blood and hair – there were also some chemical-coated fibers present. She announces that she’s going to hold onto the report, and her colleagues warn her not to give it to Maura. She vows that she won’t, but makes no such promise about giving it to her mother to give to Maura…
After an elaborate and hilarious charade on Angela’s part, Maura finally relents, looks at the report and asks Angela to pass on a message.
Maura: You have to tell Jane to have the lab test the trivalent chromium particles for azurite. Also, see if they can detect heightened levels of alicyclic C10 hydrocarbons.
Angela: …Maybe you could just write that down?
Connecting the dots
Back at the office, Jane offers Kent a peace offering in the form of a half-caff caramel macchiato. “You didn’t spit in it, did you?” Kent inquires. This is not the time for jokes, Mr. Drake. Fortunately, he also has some useful information for Jane: He found traces of smoke residue. She passes along Maura’s request, which she very professionally wrote on her palm and also definitely mispronounced.
Turns out that what he’s actually looking for is the presence of paint thinner and a mineral used in blue paint. Does a burned blue painting ring any bells to you? It should if you watched last week’s episode. The art thief case isn’t officially closed yet, and it looks like Susie was making calls related to a theory that ultimately got her killed. Maura does some off-the-books digging and figures out exactly what her colleague’s theory was: That the painting destroyed in the fire wasn’t the $20 million original, but a forgery of the forgery. Rizzoli & Isles 6×05 is beginning to look a lot like Inception or that Xzibit meme.
The team traces one of the calls Susie made to the house of the painting’s owner, Mary Langdon. Neither Mary nor her husband, Secretary of State Samuel Langdon, recall speaking to Susie, which means one of their staff must have spoken with her. Just then, Frankie calls with news: The person who wanted to buy the painting reported being contacted about it after it was “destroyed.” Jane asks her brother to call the number, and sure enough, a pre-paid cellphone belonging to one of the Langdons’ staff begins to ring. Jane and Korsak arrest him, but they can only tie him to the buyer, not the victims. A background check reveals their suspect’s ties to Secretary Langdon go all the way back to their Army days, which means, Jane deduces, that he’s used to taking orders from Langdon – and he’s indebted to the man for saving his life. Korsak and Jane pit the two suspects against each other, and the truth finally comes out: Langdon wanted to use the money to run for governor.
With the perpetrator behind bars and Maura’s suspension lifted, there’s only one thing left to do: Give Susie the send-off she deserves. Everyone gathers at the Dirty Robber, where Maura says a few words.
I knew the moment that I met Susie that she was someone very special. The second week she was at the lab, we had a corpse arrive: 700 bee stings, massive lesions, acute inflammation… The point is, the next morning, I came in to find Susie in the back, covered from head to toe in a beekeeper’s suit, running tests on four different hives, and I knew then that I had met a kindred spirit.
Next, Nina cues up a song from Susie’s iPod that she apparently listened to 465 times. A concerto, Maura guesses. Well, not quite. It turns out the quirky criminalist has one more surprise for everyone: She loved listening to metal (Soil’s Shine On, to be exact). RIP, Susie Chang, and watch out for actress Tina Huang’s new projects!