By Jessica Grey
The latest installment of The Night Manager finally sees Jonathan Pine weasel his way into Richard Roper’s inner circle. It also lays the groundwork for an affair I can see from a mile away. And it included a scene that made me laugh so hard that I almost committed an act of sacrilege: I nearly lost a whole mouthful of my Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.
The episode opens at a lavish birthday party for the teenage daughter of Richard Roper’s lawyer, Juan “Apo” Apostol. Amid all the luxury and joviality, Elena seems miserable; Apo has to prompt her to smile in front of all their guests. As the crowd—including Jed, Roper, and Roper’s entourage—keeps partying (and surreptitiously discussing business), a maid comes running to Apo in tears. Apo follows the maid, and Jed and Roper follow Apo, to find his daughter’s body; she hanged herself. Necessarily, and understandably, the business meeting to which the party appeared to be a preamble is postponed and the group resolves to reschedule the meeting at Mallorca, using another children’s party for cover.
After the group’s return to Mallorca, Jonathan is escorted to Roper’s living quarters. Roper starts off the conversation so ominously promised last week with: “What do you want from the world?” The questions get more pointed at Corky joins the conversation; they go on to inform him he has nowhere to go because they’ve shredded his passport. This is also when my ice cream was almost sacrificed to fits of laughter, because Corky—half-flirting and half-trying to make Jonathan uncomfortable—busts out with this line: “There’s no use getting in a paddy, my dear. Your cover’s blown sky high. Tom Quince is on every wanted list on God’s earth. Murder; theft; sadly, not buggery, but we’ll work on that.” *gigglesnorts forever*
So it’s decided for Jonathan that he’ll be staying with them for a while longer. Before he is shown to his new quarters, Roper takes the time to deliver a—*ahem*—friendly warning that includes: “If you step out of line, we’ll make you howl for your mother.”
Once Jonathan is somewhat settled in, he asks Roper to take Danny into town for a change of scenery. On their way out, Corky teases Jonathan: He’s discovered that the records of about 18 months of Jonathan’s life are nonexistent. Though they are sent with bodyguards in tow, it is during this outing that Jonathan is finally able to make contact with Angela, who has also made her way to Spain with Joel and the rest of Operation Limpet. Angela plays at being a tourist while Jonathan orders ice cream with Danny, making a point of explicitly discussing the upcoming party and the fact that Corky is trying to find out everything about him, “all the way back to the time of the ancient Egyptians.”
At some point after they’ve returned, Jonathan goes for a swim in the pool by which Jed is reading. They have a friendly exchange and, then, when Jonathan makes it back to the other side of the pool, Corky threatens castration if he should ever touch Jed. I have to say this scene was kind of disappointing: a) Corky dehumanized Jed when he literally referred to her as fruit; b) the “forbidden fruit” trope is so worn out; and c) (which, I guess, is technically a subset of “b”) this makes it pretty obvious that Jonathan’s going to have an affair with Jed. That is just way too predictable.
While keeping Danny company, Jonathan learns that Roper has a secret alarm-equipped study that he refers to as “the Citadel” and to which there is only one key, which he keeps hidden. Then the show clips away to Madrid, where Joel and Angela are watching Apo. Since his daughter’s suicide, Apo has visited the same cathedral every day and, once, called to report information on Roper, but hung up when he was asked to identify himself. Angela and Joel determine that he is ripe to be tapped for Operation Limpet. Angela makes contact with Apo inside the church and convinces him to use his key status in Roper’s operation to get Corky bumped out of his role as Roper’s right-hand man. Meanwhile, Jonathan is making inroads with Roper and planting the seeds of distrust where Corky is concerned.
When guests start arriving for the children’s party-turned-business meeting, Jonathan goes to let Jed know that her presence is needed and finds her naked, on the phone, crying. Later, during the party, Jed more or less demands that Jonathan go for a walk with her. During their stroll she confronts him: He never should have seen her crying and he should never mention to anyone that he had. Then she decides she wants to go swimming and invites Jonathan to join her. Though he declines, she strips and walks out into the water, teasing Jonathan in the process. Meanwhile, up at the house, Apo starts making moves to undermine Corky, claiming that the man with whom they are about to deal does not trust Corky, insists that the deal will not happen if he remains a major player at the table.
Back in London, the CIA and MI6 are concerned that Operation Limpet is out of its league in an incendiary region and the operation should be transferred to the direct control of the intelligence agencies. When Rex Mayhew—Angela’s contact in the British government—shoots this idea down, MI6’s Dromgoole essentially bribes him with the promise of the death of a long lost, wealthy uncle in Switzerland if he should sign off on giving MI6 control of Operation Limpet.
At some point in all of this, Jonathan, who is forbidden contact with the outside world save for when he is under the supervision of armed guards, has managed to swipe Danny’s phone. He manages to get a text out to Angela, informing her of the deal Sandy’s wife told him about earlier. Later, Jonathan visits the main part of the compound to find that nearly everyone is gone to Monaco to work on the deal, but Corky and Jed have been left behind. While Corky and Jed are horseback-riding on the island, Jonathan takes the opportunity to break into “the Citadel,” where he is able to use Danny’s phone to take pictures of the paperwork for the imminent weapons deal, which he sends along to Angela. While erasing signs of his presence in the secret study, he finds a single strand of blonde hair, which can only belong to Jed. He confronts her when she returns from her ride and now they both know that they both have been getting into stuff they shouldn’t.
Meanwhile, we find out who in the intelligence community has a soft spot for Roper when he has a separate meeting in Monaco with one of Dromgoole’s underlings. During the meeting, it is revealed that MI6 thinks Operation Limpet is a more successful endeavor than Angela would have them believe and Roper tries to calm the waters by stating that he is shaking up the inner circle.
When Roper returns to Mallorca, Jonathan is summoned to the office. Roper declares that he has a present for Jonathan and presents him with a new passport for an Andrew Birch of New Zealand. Jonathan can only keep the passport if he promises to do something for Roper: take possession of a company—specifically, take over the shell company held by Corky. Jonathan is officially in Roper’s inner circle and an illegal arms dealer.