“Father” exposes a lot of contrivance in Hanna and extends a saggy middle portion, but ends with a promising change of direction.
This Hanna Episode 4 recap for the episode titled “Father” contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Well, blimey, there are opening ten minutes, and then there are the opening ten minutes of “Father”. Following on from the previous episode’s double-and-triple-crossing finale, Marissa (Mireille Enos) is being held in a dingy basement by Rudi (Stefan Rudolf) while Erik (Joel Kinnaman) uses her to lure her limey conspirator Jacobs (Andy Nyman) into an ambush. To prove he means business, Erik coolly executes Jacobs, who seemed set to be a bigger player in Hanna that he ended up being. A shame.
Hanna (Esme Creed-Miles) herself, meanwhile, is being cared for by Dieter (Benno Fürmann) in the home of his not necessarily agreeable wife Sima (Narges Rashidi) and their children. When Dieter is suspiciously called away, Hanna sneaks out of the house (rather easily, it must be said) and is able to sneak into his car, to be transported wherever it is he’s going.
That place turns out to be the warehouse where Erik, Rudi, and Elsa (Katharina Heyer) are keeping Marissa; Elsa refers to Dieter as “Daddy”, which is weird, and they also give him a contingency plan that is to be handed to the press is something goes wrong. Hanna overhears Marissa and Erik discussing “the truth” and “who he really is”, but details ar still being dangled tantalizingly out of reach for now.
Marrisa (under duress) sets up a meeting with Carl (Justin Salinger, looking like a dehydrated Hugh Jackman), with whom she’s to arrange an escape plan for Erik. Meanwhile, Hanna distracts Dieter for long enough to dig up the package he was given by Rudi and Elsa; it’s the paper signed by Johanna Petrescu (Joanna Kulig), at this point almost certainly Hanna’s birth mother, when she agreed to presumably sign Hanna over to Erik and Marissa. This sets off the waterworks for Hanna when she sees the “Father” section left blank, and we have a couple of issues here. 1) The way Hanna gets Dieter out of the way, like a lot of similar distractions and sneaky twists in this show, felt less like someone using their initiative and instead like someone having peeked at the script; and 2), the idea that Hanna is surprised by her parentage at this point is a little ridiculous given all the prior evidence and the conversation she overheard the previous night.
A conversation between Marissa and Erik (and a flashback) helps to flash out the backstory properly. After signing baby Hanna away to Utrax, Johanna had a change of heart during the birth and decided she wanted her child returned. Appealing to the better nature of Erik, she convinced him to steal the kid, leading to the opening scene of the first episode, in which Johanna was killed. Her death was blamed on Erik by Marissa. The truth puts Erik on the right side of the show’s moral divide, even though he was complicit in the procurement of the child — and one assumes the procurement of several others — in the first place. We still don’t know what Utrax wanted with the infants, but we can assume it wasn’t to give them lives of luxury.
Hanna manages to sneakily call Sophie (Rhianne Barreto) using Dieter’s landline (that dude’s house is way too small for her to be getting away with all this), and her long-lost bestie somehow intuits her identity from her breathing, but Hanna hangs up before exchanging any words. Carl, meanwhile, has been blindsided by Jerome Sawyer (Khalid Abdalla), a higher-up here to make his life very difficult indeed by asking him lots of pointed questions about Utrax and Marissa’s request for a rendition flight. Naturally — refer to problem 1) a couple of paragraphs up — he has figured out that Marissa is in Erik’s custody, rather than the other way around.
More clarification is given by Marissa when Erik asks what happened to the other children at the Utrax facility. After Erik exposed the project, they were all killed and incinerated; Hanna is the only one left, the only remaining evidence that the project, the original purpose of which is yet to be revealed, ever existed. Marissa assured “very powerful people” that every trace had been eradicated, which is why she was so desperate to apprehend Erik and Hanna. She’s scared.
It’s very much out of the frying pan and into the fire for everyone in the episode’s climax. Dieter, Elsa and Hanna pick up Erik to take him to the airport to catch a flight that obviously isn’t as it seems, since Sawyer figured everything out ahead of time. Sawyer also nipped to the warehouse where Rudi had been told to execute Marissa, saving her in the nick of time only to reveal that he had been sent by “her friends at Utrax”, which might be a fate worse than Rudi’s bullet. At the airfield, Hanna chooses the perfect time to have a very teenage paddy, refusing to go anywhere with Erik and running away from him just as Sawyer’s agents arrive and shoot him up. Elsa and Dieter are able to get to him, but he’s left badly wounded, and once again seperated from Hanna.
“Father” ends with Hanna being discovered stowed aboard a truck where other young people have apparently been sent by Dieter as stowaways. Perhaps he isn’t just exporting fruit and veg to England for a living after all?
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.