Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4 recap – what happened in “Damage Control”?

By Daniel Hart
Published: May 1, 2020 (Last updated: February 7, 2024)
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Apple TV+ series Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4 - Damage Control


The situation is getting desperate in Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4, “Damage Control” as Laurie and Andy are worlds apart in approach.

This recap of Apple TV+ series Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4, “Damage Control” contains significant spoilers.

How does Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4, “Damage Control” start?

Jacob and his parents meet the lawyer Joanna Klein. He states he is not sure why Derek blames him for Ben’s death. Andy also confirms the knife is gone.

Jacob repeats the same story regarding how he found Ben’s body to Joanna and she routinely presses him regarding the version of events. Jacob gets frustrated and Joanna demonstrates why Jacob should not take the witness stand. They are going to attack the case instead.

This scene itself demonstrates how horrifying it must be watching your child go through this.

When they get home, Jacob is wondering why the family is having a big sit down meal every night. Laurie gets frustrated and emotionally asks Jacob what would they like them to do. Andy makes a joke to lighten the tension.

And in the flash-forwards in the grand jury?

Neal asks Andy about his father’s crimes that Laurie tried to hide when the media requested information. There’s then a flashback to when Andy met his father in jail when he was a child — Andy was clearly afraid of him.

What’s Andy doing in the core story?

Andy is trying to do his own investigation into Ben’s murder. He goes to meet a young man named Matt about Leonard Patz who was a victim. Matt tells Andy he doesn’t want to speak about it much. Andy tells Matt that he thinks his story has holes in it, especially in how he was confronted by Leonard Patz. Matt won’t give him any information so Andy gets frustrated and asks Matt to do the right thing.

Afterward, Andy follows Leonard as he leaves for work.

Andy has violated everything he stands for in Episode 4.

How is Jacob coping?

When Andy returns home in Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4, “Damage Control”, Jacob is hanging out with his friend Sarah. When Sarah leaves, Andy asks about her. Jacob says she feels sorry for him and feels guilty for initially believing Derek.

Apparently Derek is obsessed with Sarah and Jacob reckons Sarah thinks Derek committed the murder.

And Laurie?

When Laurie is out eating at a diner, she makes a friend and confides in her, saying her family is going through a hard time, with friends leaving her out to dry. The woman suddenly reveals she knows who she is and states she is a journalist for the Globe — Laurie runs out of the diner, shocked that she has been tricked into confiding in someone.

Why are Laurie and Andy at odds with each other?

It’s very telling that they are at odds with each other, with Laurie wondering why Andy isn’t leaving it up to Joanna to do her job. Andy says he wants to protect his son Jacob at all costs — “Whatever it takes”.

In the grand jury scenes, Neal asks Andy whether he believed his father had some part of him in Jacob. Andy states he felt the opposite and made his determination — he knew Jacob was not a murderer. Neal says Laurie was a different story.

How does Defending Jacob season 1, episode 4, “Damage Control” end?

The psychologist wants the family DNA evidence to help Jacob in case he is found guilty to help with his sentencing — this has something to do with the murder gene, but it’s not explicitly clear. The psychologist wants a swab from Andy’s father, who has requested Andy takes the swab. Andy does not want to, but Laurie tells him he will — “It’s like what you say… whatever it takes”.

Other points

  • Andy tells Joanna that they need to tell Jacob’s story. He wants her to look at Leonard Patz.
  • Laurie hides something from the mail.
  • Laurie asks Andy if a tiny part of him might think that Jacob did it.
  • Jacob is creating a secret social media account and adds Sarah. They message each other. He listens to her songs.
  • Laurie tells the woman in the diner that Andy does not have many friends.

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