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"Brother's Keeper"
1207 Brother's Keeper 2
Season 12
Episode 1207
Air date November 5, 2018
Written by Paul Aitken
Directed by Craig David Wallace
Previous Sir. Sir? Sir!!!
Next Drowning in Money

"Brother's Keeper" is the seventh episode of the twelfth season and the one hundred seventy-fifth of the Murdoch Mysteries. It first aired on November 5, 2018.

Summary

When Watts kills a man in self-defence and Murdoch uncovers the victim’s criminal past, questions surround Watts’ story. Is Watts' hiding something something from Murdoch?

When Murdoch and Crabtree check out several reports of people hearing one or two gunshots and an anonymous call about a body — from a police call box, they discover the body in an alley where a blood trail leads them to a wounded Watts who confesses to killing Nigel Baker.

It is an unlucky Saturday night for Watts given how events played out: He came upon a belligerent drunk unexpectedly in the alley, a well-traveled shortcut. Watts tried to avoid him, but he came straight at Watts, drawing a pistol from his coat. Watts lifted his arm to block the shot, the trigger was pulled; they struggled for control of the weapon and it discharge again killing the drunken man. Watts states that he didn’t know the man. Murdoch would like to know the motive for the man drew a pistol and shot it; The Inspector and Murdoch agree that it was more than the average Saturday night donnybrook.

Nigel Baker was recently acquitted of a brutal murder; The case file on him states that he was a gang leader in the west end (Watts’ old stomping ground). Daniel Marks, age 20, who lived in the same neighbourhood as Baker, had reported on a robbery that Nigel Baker had committed, and presumably, Baker killed him in retaliation. Crabtree confirms that Nigel Baker was at the Hog's Head Tavern until 11:00, and by all accounts, he was well into his cups.

At the City Morgue, Dr Ogden asks Murdoch about the finger marks on the weapon, confirming that they were from Nigel Baker's right hand. Struggling for control of the weapon, Watts claims that the gun was still in Baker's hand when it discharged. The bullet would have traveled from the victim's right to his left from the point of entry. Instead, Miss Hart has discovered the path of the bullet traveled from left to his right. The Inspector and Murdoch conclude that Watts had control of the weapon when he shot Baker.

Murdoch is left to follow what the evidence informs him as Watts either can’t remember or won’t tell. Each sequence of events on the night of the murder shifts as new evidence and back-story are revealed, centering on how one bad piece of evidence can taint the whole case and its unintended consequences.

Character Revelations

  • Llewelyn Watts has never killed anyone before and a dark and tragic past is revealed.
  • The first time Brackenreid ever killed someone up close face-to-face was in the line of duty, “Came at me with a knife – had no choice – troubled me all the same.”
  • Before Station House No. 4, Crabtree was assigned to Station House No. 1 with Constable Baxter.
  • As Ruth Higgins-Newsome's hairdressing bill alone is half of Henry's copper wage and she has had to give up truffles and her chocolate delivery service, Henry informs George that he has a second job as a nightwatchman, thus he is falling asleep on the job(s).
  • George discovers that Henry has more aptitude for fixing their (jointly owned) automobile than he had thought possible, despite the fact that Henry doesn't know the thing-a-ma-bob "...is the fly wheel".
  • Murdoch tells Watts, "I too once faced a choice between duty and conscience", an allusion to Constance Gardiner (ep.413)

Continuity

  • Season 12 resumes... after the Halloween hiatus.
  • A copper killing someone is a most serious matter: Murdoch asks Dr. Ogden to oversee the Morgue's investigation; Miss Hart is not thrilled.
  • Murdoch asks Julia if she remembers every detail of her fight with Eva Pearce (ep.918), — it is emblazoned in her memory, because Watts had a similar fight for his life and claims not to remember every detail; Ogden agrees that it is "...certainly unusual, but every mind is different".
  • Henry and Ruth are adjusting to life without the Newsomes of Mimico grandeur; Henry's lack of sleep doesn't help George with the investigation, nor does the Higgins-Newsome Motorized Service (George's prescient taxi/uber idea).
  • When demonstrating how the weapon was discharged, Higgins gives Murdoch an unexpected knee to the groin, then inappropriately, rises his arms in 'victory'. With a bloody hell, the Inspector tells him, "Out the way, Higgins. Let the dog see the rabbit."
  • Constable John Brackenreid returns and has a keen nose (sense of smell) for investigations.
  • Henry lands a job at Bloom and Crabtree Autoshop.

Historical References

  • This episode takes place in Toronto 1906 – Edward VII (Albert Edward;1841-1910) is King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and of the British Dominions beyond the Seas.
  • Billy Boy is a traditional folk song and nursery rhyme, the narrative of the song have been related to a murder ballad from the British Isles: "Lord Randall" about the Lord being poisoned by his lover.
  • Watts tells Murdoch that the Marks twins were fodder for Nigel Baker’s cruelty, alluding to their congenital condition.  In 1866 British physician, John Langdon Down, for whom the syndrome is now named, first described Down Syndrome, as “Mongolism” (a great error in his attribution of the genetic disorder). In 1959, French Pediatrician/Geneticist Professor Jerome Lejeune discovered that individuals with Down Syndrome have an extra chromosome. The term Down Syndrome was accepted in the early 1970s.

Trivia

  • ‘Wahoo’ is an interjection used to express exuberance or enthusiasm or to attract attention, chiefly Western US. Synonyms: yahoo, yippee, whoopee. Whereas ’Hee-haw’ is the bray of a donkey or a loud rude laugh as in ‘Guffaw’.

Errors

Cast

Main Cast

Yannick Bisson as Detective William Murdoch
Hélène Joy as Dr. Julia Ogden
Thomas Craig as Inspector Thomas Brackenreid
Jonny Harris as Constable George Crabtree

Recurring Cast

Daniel Maslany as Detective Watts
Shanice Banton as Violet Hart
Lachlan Murdoch as Constable Henry Higgins
Charles Vandervaart as John Brackenreid

Guest Cast

Dylan Harman as Hubert Marks
Bill MacDonald as Thomas Baker
Kyle Gatehouse as Nigel Baker

Non-credited Cast

Gallery