Virgin River season 2, episode 6 recap – what happened in “Out of the Past”?

By Daniel Hart
Published: November 27, 2020 (Last updated: December 5, 2023)
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Netflix series Virgin River season 2, episode 6 - Out of the Past


“Out of the Past” sees characters face their demons; there’s an air of exhaustion amongst them.

This recap of Netflix’s Virgin River season 2, episode 6, “Out of the Past” contains significant spoilers.

We recapped every episode — check out the archive. 

The opening 

“Out of the Past” begins with Mel spooked as someone is trying to get into the clinic. But it’s Jack, so she is relieved. Mel is creating digital files for all patients despite Doc’s resistance to technology. Mel then brings up the anniversary of Mark’s death, and she wants to figure out how to get through the next few days. Jack gives her neutral advice again, and it bugs Mel; this keeps happening. Mel asks Jack if he ever speaks about Iraq, but he brushes it off. Virgin River season 2, episode 6 sees Mel not only battling her own demons but having a sense of care for Jack’s wellbeing. 

Doc makes a decision 

Muriel tells Doc that he’s surprised that he and Hope got together. But then Doc surprises her by revealing that he and Hope have decided to reconcile. Of course, he did that without Hope’s permission. He felt like it was time because he was feeling guilty for stringing Muriel along. 

Come on, marines! 

Jack rallies his friends for more fun. They don’t seem up for it as they want to return to their normal lives, but he’s adamant that they should continue despite raging hangovers. He convinces the group to kayak, but the river currents look dangerous. His friends know he’s been drinking all night and are worried about him. Jack gets frustrated and walks away.  Later on, one of his friends talks about how stress triggers him. All his friends leave, and Jack is feeling regretful as he wanted to blow off steam. To make matters worse, Jack tells Preacher that there’s nothing to worry about. He’s clearly on edge, struggling with the responsibility of becoming a father and the past that is crippling him. 

There’s no right way for the anniversary

Mel brings up the anniversary of Mark’s death to Hope as she doesn’t know how to handle it. Hope explains there is no right or wrong way to do an anniversary and advises that she doesn’t need to do anything. Doc then enters the room and tells Mel that he defended her to Connie who is furious about the birth control prescription for Lizzie. Doc offers to help out the situation. Mel is surprised that Doc has her side for once. What a difference a few months make. 

The farm deal is in limbo 

Brady speaks to Lilly about signing off the farm. She brings up Calvin and how she knows about the drugs. Brady is frustrated that the deal is falling through. It puts him in a bad position with Calvin. This feels like it will have repercussions later. 


Charmaine has been given permission to go home after responding well to treatment. She needs to create a birth plan with Mel. Charmaine talks about feeling better and that she can’t wait to go home. This entire situation is playing with Mel’s head. 

Muriel’s war of words

Hope is feeling guilty, so he gives Muriel a pie for her party and apologizes. Muriel accepts the apology and tells her that when she screws up with Doc again, she’ll be there to pick up the pieces. A love triangle/war is on. Hope should not have messed with her.

Hope tells Doc afterward about the apology, and he tells her he is proud. 

Processing the grief 

Mel decides to listen to archived voicemails and looks at photos of Mark. She’s trying to go through the grieving rather than avoid it. But you almost sense it’s building up at this stage of the chapter. 

Jack is not forthcoming 

Mel sees Jack driving while jogging and asks if he’s okay again but he’s clearly quiet and not in the mood to talk. It’s a weird conversation that ends as quickly as it started. Afterward, Charmaine shows Jack everything she has bought for their babies. Jack seems surprised, but he does not look happy. He is overwhelmed by it all and has to splash water on his face in the bathroom. Jack quickly departs, and Charmaine is confused by his hurriedness. “Out of the Past” sees Jack on the verge of a breakdown — the more he realizes he is going to be a father, the more his issues compound him. 

Something to remember Mark by 

Mel borrows Hope’s small boat and sews up Mark’s flag on it. She has decided to treat the anniversary the next day like any other normal day. Mel places the small boat on the lake and watches it sail off. As it sails, she remembers being on a boat with Mark that looked like simpler times.

Jack is off the rails 

Jack decides to go into the dangerous current with the kayak. Preacher warns Mel that what Jack is doing is not safe. Mel tells Jack that she’s getting in the water with him and the pair argue as Jack doesn’t want her to join him. Mel tells Jack that the water can’t be that dangerous or the twin babies would lose a father. This hits Jack right in the face and he follows her away from the river. Mel knew Jack was on edge, and because she cares, she came to his rescue — this scene goes to show that they do need each other. 

Jack doubts himself 

Jack thanks Mel for helping him. Mel recalls the time when she lost her baby and how she didn’t want to live or die; she wishes she could help him. Jack brings up Lonergan, the man who died under his command, and how it eats away at him — he tells her that no-one should have died under his watch. Mel tells Jack that it is an impossible standard in a warzone. Jack wonders how he will be able to keep the twins safe if he couldn’t stop an adult from dying. Mel tells him he is fit to be a father and gives him words of encouragement. 

Mel uses the kayak as an example as a reason that Jack will ensure that his children stay safe. She rests his head on his shoulder for a peaceful few moments.

The ending

When Preacher returns to the bar, he wonders where Ricky is, but he’s too busy gallivanting with Lizzie. Preacher notices Jamie and the pair flirt again. Jamie asks why he doesn’t run his own quality restaurant in the city — she offers to help him and give him a new life. 

Meanwhile, on the way home, Ricky tells Lizzie to put her seatbelt on. She places gummy worms in his mouth, and as he blushes, they are involved in a car accident. As Mel and Jack walk home through the woods, they see the sheriff — a couple of hikers have found a body. Preacher best take up that restaurant idea quickly, as he’s about to be in a whole lot of trouble.

Virgin River season 2, episode 6 sees characters face their demons; there’s an air of exhaustion amongst them. However, bubbling underneath the story is a potential threat from Calvin and the discovery of a body. This feels like a turning point in the series.

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