NCIS: New Orleans Recap: Master of Horror
“NCIS: New Orleans” Season 1 Episode 6 “Master of Horror” aired last Tuesday, Oct. 28, 2014, at 9:00 p.m. on CBS. In this episode, the team got a taste of Halloween after they investigated a case in which a naval judge advocate was found with what seemed to be a vampire bite. However, their case took a more sinister turn when they discovered the truth behind the judge’s death. Read on to learn more about the episode.
At the beginning of the episode, a couple in costumes decided to have a gothic romantic tryst at the cemetery. They stopped when they saw a woman dressed in white on one of the tombstones. She then asked for help and told them that the “devil did this to me” before she died.
The next day, Special Agent Christopher La Salle (Lucas Black) told Special Agent Meredith “Merri” Brody (Zoe McLellan) that he loved Halloween in New Orleans, as they celebrated it for one whole week. He then showed her his costume, the Baconator — “half bacon and half Terminator.” However, their discussion was interrupted by a call, which informed them that the had a new case on their hands.
At the cemetery, Special Agent Dwayne “King” Pride (Scott Bakula) discovered, much to his sadness, that the victim was Judge Advocate Melanie Herman. Medical Examiner Dr. Loretta Wade (CCH Pounder) informed him that she had died before 3:00 a.m. and that her hair had been recently dyed red. She had bled to death, but as she was clean, it seemed like her body had been dumped there. The strange part was that there were two puncture wounds at the side of her neck, much like a vampire bite.
At the NCIS headquarters, Brody informed them that the couple had told her that the judge’s last words were “devil did this.” As they suspected that the killer was human, and not a vampire, they decided to take a look at her judicial records. Before they could leave, Linda Pride (Paige Turco), Pride’s wife, swung by to drop off some Halloween costumes. She then informed her husband that she was not going to be able to be there to participate in their trick or treat tradition, as she had made plans so that they wouldn’t “fall into old habits.”
At the judge’s office, they learned from her assistant, Petty Officer Jake Dern, that she had attended a private party that night at Galatois. He also told them that he did not know if she had attended the party but would make a list of all of the judge’s past cases for them to review and give them the name of the party’s host and coordinator so that they could get the guest list.
At the laboratory, Sebastian Lund (Rob Kerkovich) informed Pride that he had noticed something about the victim. He said that the judge had been dressed up to look like Lucy Westenra, Dracula’s first victim in the Bram Stoker classic. Loretta then brought Pride to the Medical Examiner’s office, where she showed him that the neck puncture wounds were just superficial. She had bled out because of a crude incision that was made on the side near her lower back. She had been sewn up with the same thread used in the hem of the dress she was wearing, which meant the killer had dressed her up afterwards. The incision had been made so that the killer could steal her kidney. She had been unconscious during the ordeal as they found chloroform in her system.
Pride had to go straight to the host of the party at Galatois, who turned out to be Councilman Hamilton (Steven Weber). He did not like Pride of NCIS because she got a hold of the guest list.
La Salle, who had just finished reading all of the judge's cases without any new leads, was surprised to see Brody eating. Galatois had sent a snack plate along with the guest list and video footage. After combining the footage from Galatois with other security feeds in the French Quarter where Galatois was, they discovered that Petty Officer Jake Dern had followed the judge for some time on the street. When they confronted him about it, Brody realized that Dern did have unrequited feelings for the judge. But after a while, as she had almost made him, she had gone out of sight, and he had gone to a bar to drink. His alibi checked out. When they went to the streets where Dern claimed to have last seen the judge, Brody noticed a door with a white doll which resembled the dead judge. After entering, they discovered a dead body in the coffin.
According to Loretta, the new victim was Lieutenant Commander Joel Abram, who had been dead for around three days. It was definitely connected with their current case as there was a similar incision on the side of the victim. They had found that he had an extra kidney, Judge Herman’s kidney, which was placed there after he had died.
La Salle then informed them that Abram had been a jury member for a court martial case against Chief Petty Officer John Neville. He had been tried for sexually assaulting a girl named Denise Murdock. He had then been sentenced to seven years in the Charleston Brig and had been released three months ago. However, he had appealed many times in the seven years he was locked up and always said that he was innocent.
Pride then learned from Mrs. Murdock that she had been worried about Denise as she could not find or contact her at all. He was then interrupted by Brody and La Salle who informed him that they had found Denise’s car. Unfortunately, there was no Denise and that they had John Neville’s address.
At the Neville property, they were met by John Neville, and his son, Jesse (Adam Rose), whom he called a halfwit. Neville told them that he did not kill anyone and that he did not assault Denise.
La Salle, after dropping off Mrs. Murdock at the NCIS headquarters, went to investigate Denise’s car. There, he found blood patterns, a smashed window and some white substance inside the car.
Back at headquarters, Brody informed Pride that the psychologist of the Charleston Brig, Dr. Sam Wilkins, would be coming to assist them in their case. Pride was surprised to find that Linda was there. She had gone there to drop off another box of Halloween decorations. She had seen Mrs. Murdock so she decided to stay with her until Denise was found. After Brody told Pride that Loretta had wanted to see him, Linda told her husband to go and “learn things.” Brody then realized that he got that expression from her.
Loretta and Sebastian then informed Pride that they had found chloroform in Abram’s system. There were two burn marks on either side of his neck. Sebastian then concluded that Abram was supposed to stand for Frankenstein’s monster from Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein.”
Dr. Sam Wilkins told them that John “had a temper” and loved to read horror novels. Among the books that were listed that belonged to him included an anthology of horror with three stories- Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” and Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein." The other one is Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado,” a revenge story in which someone had been left in a cellar to die, and the perpetrator had built a wall around him. This was consistent with what La Salle had discovered. He learned that the white substance he had found was gypsum, something used for making plaster or dry wall.
Then they arrested John Neville and tore his house apart, but they could not find Denise anywhere. Jesse, the son, became a little bit nervous when La Salle moved away some medical bags on a rack. He knew that he was going to get blamed for whatever his father had done. If his equipment had been touched, the medical equipment was for his condition.
Before they left, Pride found a crawlspace or an attic in John’s room. There, they found the knife used on Abram and Judge Herman, the stun gun used to knock Abram out, and Denise's credit card and license. However, he continued to maintain his innocence.
As he claimed that since his life was over, Denise’s life was too. Linda began to believe that Denise was dead. However, Pride had a feeling, a hunch, that it was not Neville after all. Thanks to the fact they held hands for a while, Pride realized that Neville had no cuts or wounds that would account for the blood spatter found in the car.
At the laboratory, Sebastian told them that he was sure that the blood belonged to Neville but did not believe that Neville had been anywhere near the car, as the blood spatter was too perfect, as if someone had planted it there so the killer had to access to his blood. Sebastian also suggested that whoever did it took advantage of the fact that Neville had a condition called Hemochromatosis, which meant that he had to regularly remove his blood. As Jesse had been nervous when La Salle moved the medical equipment, they brought him in for questioning. However, Jesse claimed to be innocent and even passed the lie detector test.
The psychologist then suggested that Jesse had Dissociative Personality Disorder. In this condition, as normally, those who have it had been abused when they were children, have an alternate personality which protects the primary personality. He also informed them that Jesse did not know what the other one was doing.
They were able to bring out the other personality when Pride threatened to hurt Jesse. The alternate personality then pinned Pride against the wall and confessed to murdering the judge and Abrams before Brody handcuffed him. There, the learned that he, the other personality, had set up John Neville from the very beginning by assaulting Denise and framing his father so that John would never hurt Jesse again. He had been frequently abused by his father. He had then sent the horror anthology to his father and killed the judge and Abrams. He tried to frame John once again so that he would be put away for good. They then told him that if he told them where Denise was, they would be able to get help for Jesse. They were then able to find her, alive, underneath a floorboard of a storage unit.
Linda revealed to her that the reason she had been so hard on him and his work was because of the nature of his work. She had always been terrified that the work would follow him home. It seemed that she was reminded that every missing girl is Laurel, their daughter, and that every dead man is Dwayne. Pride then admitted that what did terrify him was that his work was the reason why he did not come home. However, she admitted that he was a good man indeed.
Later that night, La Salle told Brody that he was not going to Voodoo Fest anymore like he had planned. He did not want Pride to spend his first Halloween alone by himself. Brody joined him and dressed up as a Freudian slip, which Dr. Sam Wilkins guessed correctly.
And that was all for the recap of “NCIS: New Orleans” Season 1 Episode 6 “Master of Horror.” For more news and updates, including spoilers and recaps, on “NCIS: New Orleans” and other television shows, keep following Movie News Guide (MNG).
Catch “NCIS: New Orleans” every Tuesday at 9:00 p.m. on CBS.
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