Lessons in Chemistry Season 1 Episode 6 Recap – What job does Elizabeth offer Fran?

By Adam Lock
Published: November 10, 2023 (Last updated: March 20, 2024)
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Lessons In Chemistry Season 1 Episode 6 Recap
Lessons in Chemistry | Image via Apple TV+


“Poirot” is a powerful installment of Lessons in Chemistry, addressing racism and police brutality in fifties America, whilst painful flashbacks explore more of Elizabeth’s past, explaining many of the reasons why the TV star is the way that she is.

Apple TV+’s Lessons in Chemistry has hinted at Elizabeth’s troubled past before in Season 1, but her childhood is finally given the flashback treatment it deserves in Episode 6, “Poirot,” where viewers are shown Elizabeth’s painful upbringing. In the present timeline, Elizabeth fights injustices at work and in the local community, whilst her daughter Madeline investigates her father’s past once more, just like the episode’s titular detective.

It’s a fascinating and heartbreaking episode that brings new depths to its characters. Our recap contains major spoilers.

Lessons in Chemistry Season 1 Episode 6 Recap

These flashback sequences take place in Alabama, in 1934. Back then, Elizabeth’s dad was a pastor, who conned the locals with lies and magic tricks. Elizabeth’s brother John told her sister the truth about their father’s lies, but their dad was still seen as a celebrity in the local community.

This opener ironically then cuts to a scene where Elizabeth is being applauded as a celebrity in her own right. She receives a round of applause from her audience. The writers cleverly juxtapose Elizabeth with her father. The duo both sold different things, but received the same type of fame and worship in response.

Elizabeth’s TV show continues to progress in the fifties. During live Q&As, Elizabeth is treated like an oracle, with the housewives desperate to know all of her secrets. In return, Elizabeth inspires them to become more confident and goal-orientated with their careers.

At the same time, Phil has landed a sponsorship deal with a company called Swift & Crisp. He forces Elizabeth to promote their products on live TV, although she refuses to lie to her audience since she doesn’t believe in these products at all. At the next show, Elizabeth sticks to her principles and ignores Phil’s orders entirely.

How is Elizabeth punished by Phil?

Elizabeth is suspended for her actions. Phil orders three days of reruns, suspending all nonessential personnel for the time being. This means that the studio staff are docked pay too. The staff air their grievances and Elizabeth is forced into promoting the products in the end.

Meanwhile, Harriet is inspired by Martin Luther King Jr to organize a peaceful protest against the construction of a freeway through the heart of her community. Her husband Charlie is against the idea at first, but she prepares flyers anyway.

Madeline continues to investigate her father’s past. She phones all of the schools with St. Lukes in their titles, although they are all dead ends. Reverend Wakely persuades her to keep searching. At the library, Madeline finds further clues and then a file on her dad at the local law offices.

What job does Elizabeth offer Fran?

Whilst shopping, Elizabeth bumps into her former Hastings colleague Fran Frask. Elizabeth offers her a ticket to come and see one of her live shows. Fran jumps at the opportunity. At the next live recording, Elizabeth performs another Q&A. Fran gives her pointers afterward. Elizabeth is impressed with Fran’s insight and offers her a job as her chief of staff.

Harriet asks Elizabeth to attend the peaceful protest, but she worries that Phil will suspend her again if she misses any more live shows. Harriet is frustrated by Elizabeth’s cowardice, arguing that the TV star has a powerful platform to bring about real change, she just needs to use it properly.

This inspires Elizabeth, and during her next live show, she makes a statement. Elizabeth announces that she will be attending the peaceful protest and advertises the event on her show. Phil is furious with this rebellious outburst.

Does Elizabeth attend the peaceful protest?

Phil gives Elizabeth a four-day suspension this time around. Elizabeth states that it will cost Phil financially to keep airing reruns. Finally, Elizabeth bests her enemy. She then attends the protest. The police are violent and beat some of the protestors, before arresting others. Elizabeth is shocked by this police brutality and the injustice of it all.

How does Lessons in Chemistry Season 1 Episode 6 end?

After the protests, Elizabeth speaks openly with her daughter. Madeline shares the information that she has found on her father and the possessions that she has collected. Elizabeth does likewise, opening up about her brother John. Flashbacks explore more of John’s life. He was beaten by his father for being gay and then he eventually killed himself, because he couldn’t take living a lie any longer. This explains why Elizabeth has nothing to do with her family in the present.

In the final scene, Madeline takes her latest findings to Reverend Wakely, who has been helping her with her investigation. Madeline has found her father’s file and the letters that are kept within it. One of these letters mentions a St. Luke’s. Reverend Wakely is surprised to discover that Madeline’s father is Calvin Evans. What is his relationship with the deceased chemist?

What did you think of Lessons in Chemistry Season 1 Episode 6? Comment below.


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