You know, I have seen many burnt-out cop stories where the detective does something to anger their superior, causing them to lose their badge and gun and go on suspension.
I don’t think I expected it to happen in this story the way it did. Besides, it’s kinda early in the case for that.
See, the thing here is Mare didn’t go on suspension for anything involving the murder of Erin McMenamin. Mare actually seems to be making decent progress. She got a little lucky in that Erin’s drunken asshole father Kenny didn’t actually kill Dylan Hinchey. Yes, he put the kid in the hospital, but Dylan’s gonna live.
That’s good. Getting a DNA sample from the lad to determine who the father of the baby really is…that’s more problematic. Frank, Mare’s ex, has a plausible explanation for why Erin’s best friend might suspect he knocked Erin up that doesn’t involve Frank doing something gross. However, the fact Mare even had to ask means he doesn’t take it very well. Mare is doing her job, and while she is surly and grumpy all the time, these are necessary steps and her general demeanor doesn’t help. Likewise, the fact that she basically knows all these people means any time she treats anyone like a legitimate suspect, it bounces back at her in bad ways. Frank may willingly submit to a DNA test, but that doesn’t mean he’s happy Mare had to ask.
Furthermore, Erin’s missing finger and the bullet that probably killed her are located as well as a second suspect appearing in the form of the new parish deacon, one Mark Burton, was also the last person Erin called before she died and was recently transferred to the parish under unknown circumstances. So, he’s suspicious just based on what Mare saw and observed so far.
The audience, seeing the Deacon dump Erin’s bike in a river, has another reason to suspect that guy.
So, really, whether or not Mare finds the killer in the end, she’s making progress in that general direction. The case has nothing to with her suspension.
The suspension comes from the fact Mare isn’t getting along with the mother of her grandson Drew, Carrie, who is looking to get full custody of the kid now that she’s clean. Mare doesn’t trust this woman, and she has some recollection that her late son maybe didn’t either. The law will take Carrie’s side in any custody dispute, and Mare’s attempts to at least get a little closer to Carrie backfires.
So, Mare planted heroin in Carrie’s car, and she wasn’t smooth enough to pull it off. That…is a damn good reason for Mare to get suspended.
Whether or not anyone else has the ability to solve this case if she isn’t permitted to, I have no idea, but this is another story about a detective that is her own worst enemy. However, this is a different take on it than most. She isn’t an alcoholic. She isn’t cheating on her spouse. She isn’t being particularly violent on the job. You know, the usual ways in which we get these sorts of stories. No, Mare is still mourning her son, and it’s clearly been affecting her whole life since he killed himself.
I can get behind something like that.