“Green Lion” was a distinct improvement, lending the show’s mystery some real stakes and some welcome twists.
This The Widow Episode 2 recap for the episode titled “Green Lion” contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
The much-improved second episode of The Widow, “Green Lion”, opened and closed with a young man and woman transporting a crate from the Democratic Republic of Congo into Rwanda. The man, evidently not too smart, believes he’s transporting coffee. The woman knows better. As we learn in the episode’s final seconds, inside the crate is Will (Matthew Le Nevez), the missing, presumed-dead husband of Kate Beckinsale‘s Georgia.
The rest of the episode was divided, not quite in half, between two storylines. The first concerned Georgia’s continuing search for her husband. Spurred into action by the car and the ominous instructions to go home left for her at the end of the previous episode, she’s unable to trace the car since an enigmatic white man paid for any record of it to be erased. With the help of Emmanuel (Jacky Ido) she’s able to scare up another lead, this one pointing to the armed man in the footage with Will — Pieter Bello (Bart Fouche), a dodgy ex-serviceman who owns a security business in Kinshasa called Bulletscreen.
More amateur sleuthing leads to Bello’s ex-wife, Vanda Steyn (Chanelle de Jager),, who informs them both he and she have HIV that he contracted from a hooker. But neither Georgia nor the audience buy the tale that Bello is no longer in contact with his family, least of all his daughter, Mia (Brooke Elliott), whom Georgia intercepts outside of school and essentially kidnaps, albeit politely, in order to convince Vanda to reveal Bello’s current location. She does — he’s in Kisima — but you get the sense that she only does so to keep this nutty woman off her back, which is fair enough.
Georgia doesn’t actually get to Kisima in “Green Lion”, but more happens, particularly regarding Emmanuel. During their bonding sessions they’re able to open up to each other; Georgia reveals that the scar from her attempted suicide was from before the crash, which prompts further questions for later in the season, and Emmanuel opens up about the wife he lost in that crash: Gaelle (Luiana Bonfim). He still harbors a lot of guilt for her death since she was on the plane after agreeing to take something aboard to pay off his debts. And despite having ostensibly moved on with his new partner Ivette (Robinah Kironde), whom he rescued from a violent husband who still gives them trouble, she knows that when he says he wants to go with Georgia to Kisima because she “didn’t get a tomorrow” like he did, what he really means is that he feels as though he has something to atone for.
He doesn’t get a chance. As he and Georgia are about to leave, Ivette calls him in a panic, presumably thanks to her lunatic ex-husband. Georgia gives him the keys to her car and tells him she’ll get a taxi instead, but as he starts the car it explodes. The car bomb meant for Georgia kills him, leaving her with even more guilt — a feeling only exacerbated by Ivette, who tells her unequivocally that his death is her fault. And she might be right. Judith (Alex Kingston) tells Georgia she’s an idiot for continuing to pursue Will despite an attempt having been made on her life, but she’s also curious as to why someone was killed right outside her house, so agrees to help Georgia get into the virtually lawless Kisima.
The other story of “Green Lion” was the burgeoning romance between Beatrix (Louise Brealey) and Ariel (Ólafur Darri Ólafsson), the blind lovers, the latter of whom claims to be a survivor of the same flight that cost Emmanuel his wife and Georgia her husband. It doesn’t take Beatrix long to believe she’s caught him in a lie, but perhaps not. Ariel claims that everything that has been reported about the crash is a lie. It did go down, and he was a survivor, but it wasn’t due to mechanical failure. According to him, a pregnant woman carrying a rucksack with a green lion emblem brought a bomb aboard.
This is much, much better. Despite some more instances of sloppy writing, The Widow proves itself in “Green Lion” to be a lot more interesting and engaging than first suggested. It remains to be seen if the show can sustain this intrigue for the entire season, but time will tell.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.