Bad Words

Episode Report Card
Sobell: C+ | Grade It Now!
A hot temper

Meanwhile, Warrick dusts prints and wonders why he's stuck on the arson case yet again. Nicky's outside -- anyone else think Catherine pushed him out the door and told him, "Go play. Don't come back until you find evidence"? Fortunately, he'll get to come in for snacktime, because he finds a stack of newspapers that are only lightly toasted. He goes inside to share the news, adding that the papers were "completely out of the path of the fire. And the firemen said they didn't put them there." How do we know that? Did anyone else miss the firemen lurking around the scene? Are we to assume that Nicky called the station house and was all, "So, that fire? With the dead girl? You remember some newspapers that weren't really burnt?" Anyway, the whole point to this exchange is to launch the boys on the pointless part of the investigation, so Warrick remembers that the fire down the street was in the garage, so maybe the newspapers are linked to that. Nicky runs with it: "The fire started in the carport. Sabrina came home, provided access to the rest of the house." Catherine asks about accelerants, then muses, "Maybe part of the M.O. is that he uses accelerants that are present." Nicky's all, "Let's hope he stuck around long enough to view the damage."

Cut to Warrick and Nick back at the lab, going through the home movies from the first fire -- and really, I don't know if it's sadder that people take home movies of other people's personal disasters, or if I'm totally unsurprised that people do this sort of thing -- and trying to figure out who the arsonist is through process of elimination. I can't believe they haven't pulled up the names of the residents on the block and run then against county records to see if there are any firebugs in the bunch; it seems like you'd save some time that way. Anyway, we get some insight into the mind of the arsonist (hint: they like to stick close to home), and Snicky rears his head again to add, "If this is a serial situation, to go from an empty garage to a whole house full of people -- we're talking about major escalation here." Warrick points out that there was a match found on the scene at the first fire, and muses, "If we could find a match in the debris at the second fire, then we may know for sure." Conveniently enough, this is at the point where the home movie focuses on the grinning woman Nicky noticed at the Abernathy fire, and she's standing near the fire truck, jittery with a guilty excitement. Snicky's neurons fire, and he realizes that they've been attaching the wrong pronoun to their arson suspect. As it turns out, the woman -- one Viva Charles by name, which sounds less like a woman's name and more like the motto for some British monarch ["or a Warhol Superstar nom de weird" -- Sars] -- has a record for attempted arson.

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