The Bay episode 3 review: family secrets tumble out

Lisa’s kids get in deeper while the finger points to two new murder suspects in The Bay episode 3. Spoilers ahead in our review…

This review contains spoilers.

“We’ve got nothing to hide” – the constant refrain of crime drama characters with a gazillion things to hide. See also: ‘there are no secrets in this family’ (oh yes there are) and ‘I trust him/her with my life’ (you shouldn’t. Now, run). If only police training included a module on irony, TV crime shows would only need to be half as long.

We’re halfway through The Bay and the suspect wheel is still turning. This week’s new possible culprits: Uncle Ryan, and Holly. Or Uncle Ryan and Holly, depending on the scenario.

Uncle Ryan is mixed up in several of the things that Shaun Meredith, despite what he told DS Armstrong, has to hide. Chief of which is that the pair and fellow trawlerman Krzysztof, kidnapped, held against his will and tortured Nick Mooney for information that he’d promised he wouldn’t reveal. Nick always keeps his promises, always, said his mum earlier in the episode. That much appears to be true.

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Nick Mooney, a vulnerable adult with a learning disability, has so far fulfilled the role of The Bay’s ‘locked box’. Usually performed by a witness in a coma or suffering from memory-impeding dementia, the locked box is an accessible character with inaccessible information about the case. Around episode five of six, the box usually opens just in time to deliver a devastating blow/shock twist. After the beating Nick suffered at Shaun’s hands, he may now actually be in a coma, adding an additional padlock. 

The time spent with Nick’s mother this episode – in which she and we learned that Med is a good sort who can be trusted – temporarily at least removed our suspicion of Nick. Whatever secret Nick is keeping, it’s unlikely he was Dylan’s killer.

The same can’t be said for Uncle Ryan, who came out of this week’s episode looking mightily suspicious. His reaction when Armstrong asked whether or not Holly had savings, plus his ready access to eight grand in a pinch, and the trainers in the railway station CCTV footage, all put him in the frame.

A theory: Ryan’s the one smuggling drugs into the Bay on the trawler and selling them to Vincent, who uses other schoolchildren as mules to get them to dealer Wilko. Holly was either one of Vincent’s mules or found out about her Uncle’s side-line and was paid for her silence. How Dylan’s death fits in, and how her blood got under his fingernails on the night they disappeared is yet to be seen.

Dylan’s death isn’t the only mystery The Bay has on the boil; there’s also the question of who it is pulling Rob Armstrong’s strings via those online messages. A bit of editing this week made it look like drug-dealing schoolboy Wilko, but the specificity of Rob’s second ‘challenge’ – smash a CCTV camera on the high street – could point elsewhere. Who might need a CCTV camera not to be working? Dylan’s killer? An in-hiding Holly.

Answers will come. The Bay is showing a healthy respect for crime drama tradition, so we can expect all queries to be fully accounted for in three episodes’ time, but not before Abbie’s situation worsens.

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To think, just a fortnight ago, DS Armstrong’s chief worry was that she’d got it on with the chief suspect. Now her daughter’s on the wrong side of a drug dealer, and her son (who with that second visit to the Food Bank, also proved himself a good sort) may have provoked the wrath of an anonymous online manipulator. And with Nana Penny moving out, the Armstrong kids are going to be more vulnerable than ever. 

Read Louisa’s review of the previous episode here.