“Inside Man,” the four-episode crime thriller, is directed by Paul McGuigan and written by Steven Moffat. The narrative makes us privy to two unique and intriguing characters. On the one hand, there was a vicar who always wanted to take the righteous path. He was a family man who was ready to do anything for his loved ones. On the other hand, there was a criminologist who had killed his own wife. He believed that everybody was capable of being a murderer if they were given the opportunity. So, let’s see how these two contrasting personalities cross each other’s paths and what impact they end up having on each other’s
‘Inside Man’ Plot Summary: What Is The Series About?
Beth Davenport was in the metro when she was molested by a boy. That was the first time Beth met Janice Fife. Janice told the molester that she was streaming the footage live on Facebook and the whole world was getting to witness what he was doing. Beth got down at her station, and she thanked Janice for helping her out. That’s when she came to know that Janice was not on Facebook. She was just bluffing to scare the abuser. In fact, she didn’t have Facebook on her phone. It was quite amazing to see how Janice had stood up to the abuser, and as soon as the others saw her doing that, they joined in too. The whole act was symbolic of the “me too” movement. It scared the abuser. Beth felt quite amused by talking to Janice. She had a unique personality. Beth was a journalist, and she asked Janice if she could interview her. It seemed like Janice was a social introvert. She was quite blunt about her feelings. She told her straight up that she wouldn’t do any interviews. She was also reluctant to go for a coffee with Beth.
Over a period of time, Beth made sure that she met Janice occasionally. Janice used to work as a home tutor. She taught mathematics to Ben, who was the son of the vicar, Harry Watling. Harry was a good man. He cared for his family. Harry felt that it was his duty as a vicar to help people out. That is why, when Edgar, the verger in his church, gave him a pendrive and asked him to hide it, he did so. Edgar told him that the pendrive had objectionable material, and he didn’t want his mother to find out about it. Edgar was a troubled boy. His mother used to beat him, and he was not mentally stable. Harry didn’t want to encourage this behavior, but at that moment, he did take the pendrive. He had thought that he would have a talk with Edgar later and make him realize that whatever he was doing was not right. Harry had kept the pen drive with the keys in his house, and he had completely forgotten about it.
Janice wanted to download some material and give it to Ben. Ben saw the pendrive lying with the keys, and he gave it to her. We had seen earlier that Janice was not somebody who would just ignore the crime that happened in front of her eyes. She saw that there was sexually explicit content involving minors and small children on the pen drive. Ben, who was standing in front of her, saw her getting pale. He couldn’t understand what could be in his father’s pen drive that shocked Janice so much. Harry also came to the scene. He saw that Janice was about to use Edgar’s pen drive. He told Ben to take it from her as it had some private information. Ben realized there might be explicit adult content in it. He went and admitted in front of Janice that it belonged to him. He wanted to save his father from embarrassment. Janice told Harry that she wanted to have a conversation with him in private. Ben and Mary Watling didn’t realize why she was making such a huge fuss about a trivial issue. In private, she told Harry that the explicit content involved very small children. Harry tried to make her understand that it belonged to Edgar, but it was not at all convincing. She felt like Harry was just trying to save his son. She wanted to take it to the police because it was a serious matter. She expected that, as a vicar, Harry would be willing to do the right thing.
No matter how much Harry tried to convince Janice, she had made her perception. Harry was scared that she would go out and tell other people and maybe inform the authorities about it. To make her stop, he told her that it was all his data that was stored on the flash drive, as the real story was not at all clear in that moment of utter confusion and misunderstanding. But once again, the move did not have the desired impact. Janice thought that Harry was just trying to save his son, who was developing pedophilic tendencies. Harry should have let her go, but his fears took over him, and he wasn’t able to. Things got aggravated pretty fast, to the point that Janice told Harry that she would start screaming if he didn’t let her go. Harry was constantly telling her that he just wanted to clarify things and prove to her that the flash drive didn’t belong to Ben. As soon as Janice screamed, Harry pushed her into his basement. Mary came and made him realize that he had committed a blunder. It was just a trivial misunderstanding that could have been solved if Harry had thought with a clear mind, but now there was no going back.
Was Jefferson Grieff Able To Delay His Death Sentence?
Jefferson Grieff had created a unique arrangement inside the prison. He was a convict who was on death row for murdering his wife in cold blood, but he still enjoyed a lot of privileges inside the prison. Jefferson was a mysterious man who talked in riddles, and people never came to know what his real intentions were. Jefferson was an educated man. He was a criminologist. He had a knack for solving cases. He could be called a nefarious and sinister version of Sherlock Holmes. Just like Sherlock had Dr. Watson, Jefferson had Dillon Kempton, a hardened criminal who had a photographic memory. Clients from different parts of the country came to him to get their cases solved. Dillon was made to sit during those client meetings so that he would remember each and every detail by heart. Jefferson had an uncanny way of doing things, and he didn’t want to leave any trails behind. Beth Davenport wanted to take his interview. Jefferson didn’t take every case that came his way, and Beth was curious to know what was the criteria on the basis of which he selected it.
Jefferson told her that moral worth was the only criterion. Jefferson was a schemer of the highest order. He always had a hidden agenda behind doing something, but in front of Beth, he said that he only took cases because he wanted to do good. Jefferson said that he didn’t want to give an interview as he didn’t want people to forgive him. He said that he wanted to atone for his sins. A disappointed Beth left the prison but came back immediately when she got a picture sent to her from Janice’s phone. It was a picture of a man whose face was hidden. Janice had not written anything about it, but Beth knew that she was in some sort of trouble.
Jefferson gave Beth a choice. He told her that he would take her on board when he solved his next case if she was ready to let go of the case of her friend, Janice Fife. He told her that she could record and write whatever she wanted about it. Beth was in a dilemma. She knew that if Jefferson allowed her to record everything, then it would greatly benefit her journalism career. But on the other hand, she thought about Janice and the kind of trouble she could be in. Beth took the hard decision and decided that she would come on board for his next case.
Jefferson got his next case in no time. A woman named Hannah had come with her daughter as she wanted to find out about her missing husband, Connor Doyle. Jefferson took Beth under his wing and made her privy to his methods. Beth saw that the man was a genius. He was always a step ahead, and most importantly, he didn’t miss out on the details. She learned that it was small details that led to huge revelations. Jefferson found that the wife had killed her husband. He also told Beth that he would help her solve the case of her missing friend Janice. He was just testing Beth by keeping her in a difficult situation. He wanted to see what she prioritized in her life. Now, with Jefferson by her side, Beth was hopeful that she would be able to find her friend.
Jefferson had a theory about human psychology. He said that our minds always notice the things that happen rather than what doesn’t happen. In order to solve a particular case, Jefferson always looked at the non-occurrence of an event and tried to join the dots through it. He had found out using his contacts that Janice used to teach mathematics to Ben, and she often visited the vicarage for the same purpose. After she had gone missing, Harry had not lodged any formal complaint. Jefferson found it very strange. His date of execution was also announced. He had only three weeks to find out about Janice and somehow find a way to delay his execution. Jefferson told the prison warden, Casey, that he was ready to talk to Gordon and Marie, the parents of his deceased wife, and tell them about where he had hidden her severed head. Jefferson had his own reasons for killing his wife. Why such an educated man committed such a dastardly act was beyond anybody’s sightedness. Everybody knew that there was something that he did not want to say. Jefferson met Gordon and provoked him so much so that the man bashed his son-in-law in the meeting room itself. Casey also told his guards not to interfere, as he thought that Jefferson was doing it all on purpose. In return, Jefferson gave Gordon the address where the severed head of his wife was kept and, in return, asked him to use his contacts to get his execution delayed. But that was not enough to convince Gordon. But Casey had a plan in mind. He always had a soft corner for Jefferson, with whom he had developed a very close bond. Casey showed the CCTV camera footage to Gordon, where he was beating Jefferson. Casey told him that if he didn’t use his contacts to help Jefferson, then he would hand over the footage to the FBI. Gordon was a gang lord himself, and the intelligence agencies wanted to find some incriminating evidence against him. Now Gordon was under a lot of pressure. Casey and Jefferson knew that Gordon would have to pull some strings, contact some powerful people, and get Jefferson’s execution delayed. Nobody knew why Jefferson had all of a sudden decided to give his father-in-law the address. Jefferson had a secret plan in mind, and he was taking his chances to accomplish something that nobody had an idea about.
‘Inside Man’ Ending Explained: Were Jefferson And Beth Able To Find Janice? Did Harry “Vicar” Kill Janice?
The Watlings were trying their level best to do damage control and make Janice realize that the explicit child clips didn’t belong to them. Harry tried talking to Edgar as he knew that his confession could change Janice’s perception. But Edgar didn’t confess. Instead, he committed suicide and left a note saying that Harry was not a “pead” and that he was only doing it to hide someone else. The police told Harry about it, and the latter knew that he could use the death note to his advantage. But it didn’t work out in his favor. The suspicion was still on his son, Ben, though Harry explicitly tried to say that it was Edgar who was a pedophile.
Harry had finally taken the decision to kill Janice. Harry and Mary both knew that the moment they left Janice, she would go to the police station and falsely accuse their son. She was trying to turn them against each other. Harry kept the heater inside the basement under the pretext of keeping Janice warm, but in reality, he just wanted to suffocate her to death as he knew that the heater would release carbon monoxide into the environment. But until then, Ben had found out that his math tutor was kept as a hostage in his basement. He hid in the basement and heard his father talk to Janice. Harry left and bolted the door, and even Ben was locked inside. He was in a convoluted state of mind. He didn’t know what was happening or why his father was behaving in such a barbaric manner. Harry was constantly calling him, but Ben was not picking it up. Janice was constantly telling him that his father was a bad man and that he needed to inform the police. Ben finally talked to his father, who was totally unaware that his son was in the basement with Janice. Harry still hid the truth from Ben and told him that everything was under control. Ben was disheartened. His father, who had been his role model, was now lying to him and indulging in all sorts of unscrupulous activities.
Harry and Mary had sent an email to Janice’s sister, with whom she used to talk once a week at a specified time. Janice had told the couple that if she didn’t respond to her sister’s call, then it would raise suspicion, and eventually, the police would come looking for her. But after Mary had sent the mail, she realized that the laptop was still in their house. Mary knew that a little research would lead the police to decipher that the mail was sent from their place only. Mary took the laptop and other belongings of Janice that were lying in their home. She found the keys to Janice’s house in the pocket of her jacket. She went to Janice’s home to find that Beth Davenport was already there. Jefferson had sent Beth and Morag to Janice’s original home in the United Kingdom. Beth confronted Mary about what she was doing there. Mary got a call from Ben, and she got to know that he was stuck in the basement. She told Ben about the whole issue and the misconceptions Janice had. Mary was leaving the house when she got hit by a truck and died on the spot.
Back in Harry’s basement, the carbon monoxide started to show its effect. Ben lost his cool and hit Janice with a hammer. Harry came into the basement, and he was shocked to see Ben standing there with a hammer in his hand. Ben thought that he had killed Janice, but it was not so. Janice was still alive. Harry wanted to finish the job that his son had started. He was about to kill Janice when a few anonymous men arrived at the scene carrying spades.
Jefferson had once again proven that he was a step ahead of everybody else. The address he had given to Gordon’s men was not of the place where the severed head of his wife was buried. The address he had given was Harry’s house. Jefferson had led those men there. Morag and Beth also reached his house after seeing the address on Mary’s phone.
Janice was still alive, and Harry was taken into custody. Later Janice met Jefferson in the prison. That means that she traveled all the way to the U.S. She told him that she wanted to get her husband killed. She said that her husband deserved to die. Jefferson didn’t seem surprised at all, as if he already knew what kind of relationship Janice shared with her husband. Harry mourned the loss of his wife. He just wanted to save his family, but he was unable to do that. Jefferson arranged for a video call and told him that he saw his own reflection in Harry. Harry felt insulted. He was a vicar and being compared to a hardened criminal was a matter of shame for him. Harry still told himself that he couldn’t be judged as he had acted only out of love for his family. He believed that none of it was his fault. Jefferson addressed Harry as a murderer. Harry was still in denial, and he said that he didn’t murder anyone. Jefferson told him that, though it was a hard pill to swallow, Harry was responsible for the death of his wife. Harry was not ready to hear the bitter truth. He wanted to close his eyes and reside in a fantasy land where he was still the most virtuous person in the world. But Jefferson showed him the mirror. He showed him that both of them were alike. Jefferson believed that everybody had a dark side. Sometimes that dark side overpowers the goodness inside a human being. Jefferson told Harry that, generally, humans fall prey to themselves and nothing else. There are moments that have the potential to change everything, where the worst inside a person comes out. Jefferson told Harry that he should try to find solace in the fact that he knew who he was, unlike millions of others who live their lives in a state of delusion and are never able to know their true self. The darkness that resides inside humans is terrifying, and not everybody has the courage to face it and accept it. Jefferson had accepted it long ago, and he wanted Harry to do the same.
At the end of season one of “Inside Man,” we still don’t know why Jefferson killed his wife. He says in the end that maybe he would tell Harry because it felt like he would understand. Whatever the backstory of the mysterious criminologist was, we are pretty sure that it would make for an intriguing watch in season 2 of “Inside Man.”
“Inside Man” is a 2022 Drama Thriller series directed by Paul McGuigan.