City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2 Recap – who is starting the fires in New York City?

By Adam Lock
Published: May 12, 2023 (Last updated: June 8, 2023)
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Apple TV+ series City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2 - Scenes from Private Life - Recap


City on Fire isn’t particularly offensive or that weak in any one key area; it just feels decidedly mediocre overall. The crime case doesn’t precisely grip you or the cast members. It’s cliched but passable.

We recap the Apple TV+ series City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2, “Scenes from Private Life,” which contains spoilers.

Detectives Parsa (Omid Abtahi) and McFadden (Kathleen Munroe) investigate the attempted murder of Samantha Yeung (Chase Sui Wonders), who was shot in the head on the fourth of July, 2003.

In “Scenes from Private Life,” Charlie’s relationship with Samantha is fleshed out in flashbacks, while Mercer (Xavier Clyde) is questioned as the initial prime suspect in Samantha’s case in the present.

City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2 Recap

Starting with a flashback, Samantha and Charlie head into the city for the 2002 New Year’s Eve celebrations. However, Samantha takes far too many mushrooms and is visibly as high as a kite.

Charlie carries her to the band’s party, where Sol can be found. He tells her to take a shower. Charlie helps Samantha undress.

After she’s cooled down, Samantha sleeps on Charlie’s lap. Charlie kisses her and says that he’s in love with her. Samantha was actually awake, though, and heard Charlie’s declaration. She sheds a single, solitary tear but says nothing.

Back in the present, Samantha is rushed into the hospital with a bullet wound to the head. Charlie takes the subway home, now bottomless, after his rather bizarre decision to throw his jeans into the bushes as he fled the crime scene.

A montage of other key incidents from the night show Mercer being arrested, Keith returning to his apartment, looking rather suspicious, and Regan’s son Will sneaking back into bed after a night out, presumably where he was up to no good as well. Charlie goes to a church to pray for Samantha while she is operated on.

Why was Mercer arrested?

Mercer is interrogated by Detective Parsa, but he states that he’s innocent. He also prays for Samantha’s swift recovery. Mercer was found with half a gram of heroin in his pocket. He swears that the suit and the drugs aren’t his and belong to his roommate William. It seems Mercer has been arrested for drug possession and his proximity to the shooting.

Regan calls her legal team about her father’s possible arrest, but nobody answers. Detective McFadden speaks with Samantha’s dad in the hospital.

What is Regan’s father being charged with?

The following day, Regan tries to speak with her father, but she’s unable to get through. She asks Keith to look after the children while she deals with her dad’s arrest. Regan explains to Keith that her father is being charged with wire fraud and that the company is now in serious trouble.

Mercer is released from prison, although he remains a person of interest in the case. He confronts William about his night in hell. Mercer believes he was arrested mainly due to racism but also because of the heroin that they found on his person. He blames William, who carelessly apologizes.

William had lied to Mercer about being clean, but he’s still using. They argue with one another. William eventually makes a sincere apology.

In the city, Regan drops the kids off with Keith. She finds a dead bird that has been shot, which surely connects with Samantha’s attempted murder case. A geeky child tells her that the bird is a great blue turaco that must have escaped from the zoo – how random?

The detectives search Samantha’s dorm for further clues. Her roommate mentions Samantha being a music lover who were friends with a band. She can’t remember the band’s name but knows that their name is Latin.

The Hamilton-Sweeney family gathers for Regan’s father’s arrival. As soon as the helicopter lands, the man is arrested, though. Regan greets her father, but the FBI whisks him away promptly.

The father seems confused, possibly suffering from early-onset dementia. He asks Regan if he is innocent, unaware of the verdict himself.

City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2 Ending Explained

Who is starting the fires in New York City?

Charlie heads home to shower after his own night in hell. He then goes back into the city to find Samantha’s friends. The band/vigilante group is living in an Italian restaurant. When Charlie arrives, they are messing with explosives. It looks like these misfits are involved with the many fires occurring in the city. Sol punches Charlie on his arrival, knocking him out. The teen has seen too much.

Back in the city, the detectives head to the crime scene in the park. They find a gun, but it isn’t the right weapon. Later, Parsa finds Charlie’s dirty jeans. Inside his pockets, he finds a train ticket and a folded-up gig poster for the band. Parsa and McFadden both agree that the band’s name is Latin. They’ve found their first clue in the case.

What did you think of City on Fire Season 1 Episode 2? Comment below.

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