“I Fall to Pieces” includes a major character death and builds to a cliffhanger that’ll surely have folks tuning in next week.
This recap of Big Sky season 1, episode 7, “I Fall to Pieces”, contains spoilers.
After last week’s episode ended with Rick Legarski opening his eyes after having obviously survived a seemingly fatal gunshot wound to the head, some of us were probably inclined to question whether the show had become a little less willing to just off major characters like it did in the premiere. But “I Fall to Pieces” proves us wrong by having Ronald cross the point of no return by snapping his mother’s scrawny neck like a chicken, doing away with the one remaining person who might prevent him from descending into outright villainy. It was a sudden and, in narrative terms, welcome development, especially with Rick now sidelined and apparently unable to remember anything about his involvement with trafficking young woman – I’m skeptical of his amnesia, of course, but either way, he’s keeping up appearances.
That thread begins right at the beginning of the episode, with Rick asking who shot him, and persists all the way through it until Merilee has to lay out in painstaking detail everything he’s accused of being involved in.
Rick’s survival – it’s all over the news – sends Ronald into a bit of a flap. He dyes his hair to keep a low profile, which his mother can’t help but laugh at, but it’s hardly going to be enough considering there are at least two ways he can currently be identified, neither of which he’s yet done anything about. But at least he’s had his cereal and takes the time to tell dear old mum that it’s all basically her fault for putting him down so much over the years.
One of those means of discovery is Jerrie, who takes the threatening note she received to Cassie, Jenny, and Denise, explaining how she thinks she’s the most valuable target to Ronald considering how much she saw of both him and his truck. It’s just as well she went there and not the Sheriff’s Department, too, since Tubb can barely be bothered to use what resources he does have and the FBI is taking over the rest. I suppose he has enough on his plate as it is with Rick being legally represented by Penelope Denesuk (Karin Konoval), who he evidently has previous with.
Ronald’s bright idea in Big Sky season 1, episode 7 is to meet up with Merilee again since she’s the only access he has to the Legarski property, though he warns his mother he might have to kill someone in retrieving the incriminating evidence. This turns out to be true, but it’s not who he thinks. Later, after meeting with Merilee and deciding to go to the house, Ronald’s mother informs him that she plans to turn him in, and in a fit of rage, he snaps her neck, leaving her sat upright in her chair as the TV reports news of the crimes her beloved son is so closely associated with.
Those crimes include the murder of the fisherman whom Rick shot with an arrow when Grace tried to escape. Montana Highway Patrol Commander Elena Sosa (Sharon Taylor) helps out with the search and floats the idea to Cassie and Jenny that Rick might also be responsible for the disappearances of many indigenous women, which is an interesting idea that I’m not sure I trust this show to make much of. Either way, the body is eventually found and identified by a traumatized Grace, who keeps experiencing flashbacks to the incident, and later has a few more when she positively identifies Rick Legarski as the perpetrator.
Jerrie also gives a better description of Ronald to a sketch artist, leading to an uncanny representation that Cassie and Jenny later take to Merilee. As it happens, Ronald is inside at that very moment, leading to the big cliffhanger ending of “I Fall to Pieces”, as Merilee rats him out while he searches upstairs for Rick’s hidden room. Uh-oh.