In Episode 6 of Home Before Dark, Sam and Frank take a walk down memory lane while Izzy and Hilde attend an ’80s-themed dance.
Episode 6 of Home Before Dark sees Hilde and Matt reopen Richie’s investigation and discover a surprising new lead. Bridget helps Izzy prepare for the ’80s-themed dance at school, which she’ll attend with Ethan after accepting his adorable balloon invitation.
The night doesn’t go the way Izzy planned it, ending instead with a girl fight in the bathroom and a tense argument with Hilde. Elsewhere, Sam manages to escape custody, and Hilde mysteriously vanishes around the same time.
Matt and Hilde reopen Richie’s case
To try and rectify the corruption and mistakes made by the Sheriff, Hilde and Matt comb through Richie’s case piece by piece. They plan to re-interview all the old witnesses and try to do whatever it takes to find a new lead.
Unfortunately, Hilde doesn’t have any luck in her interviews, and Mayor Fife won’t return her calls. Matt suggests they try to appeal to his stomach rather than his brain or heart. They show up at the Mayor’s house with ice cream, which doesn’t do much to sway his opinion.
Luckily for the Liskos, Jack’s wife is more open-minded. She and Matt persuade Jack to open his eyes to the possibility that Sam is innocent. He even lets them look around Richie’s old room.
There, they discover a bunch of old tapes kept by Richie’s mother. They’re recordings from the tip hotlines, hours and hours of random people calling in to say they saw something or they know what happened to Richie.
Most of it is junk. Matt is ready to give up on this particular haystack when Hilde hears tapes from a self-proclaimed psychic who believes Sam is innocent. Out of all the hours they poured through, this Fernando guy is the only one who thinks that.
Fernando turns out to be a scam artist like most “psychics.” Matt and Hilde entertain the idea that he can conduct Richie’s spirit through his old sweater until Hilde snatches it off the table and makes a run for it.
At least they gained one valuable thing from their trip — Richie’s sweater, which can be tested for DNA now in ways that it couldn’t back when he first disappeared.
Sam and Frank take a walk down memory lane
After some cajoling from Matt and Bridget, Frank tries to make amends with Sam for being the main reason he wound up imprisoned. While out on the remaining hours of his furlough, Sam and Frank travel to the places Sam visited on the night of Richie’s abduction. Frank wants to try and get an alibi for Sam, or at least a clear picture of his version of events.
We learn that Richie had plans to meet up with Sam to rewatch Back to the Future — Sam’s favorite movie. Richie never showed up, so Sam got high and tried to time travel the same way Marty does in the ’80s film.
To Sam’s credit, he was super high and miserable, but that explains why his van was seen speeding past the same place Richie was abducted hours after it happened.
Next, Frank brings Sam back to his old house, where he says he went after his time on the road. There, Frank finally admits that he believes Sam is innocent, and apologizes for lying on the stand.
Their heart-to-heart is interrupted by Sheriff Frank Sr., who shows up to scold his son for driving around town with Sam in his car, and things get super ugly. If you didn’t think Frank Sr. was a racist before, it feels like there is no denying it now.
He accuses Sam of being a murderer and a pedophile and doesn’t even bother denying that he tampered with evidence to close the case. Frank Sr. still vehemently believes Sam is guilty, either because he’s a coldhearted racist or because he is covering up for someone else.
Frank Jr. goes back inside the house to find Sam, but all he finds is a broken banister from where Sam managed to break free of his restraints. It looks like Frank may have been right about not trusting Sam to make a break for it, even if he does believe in his innocence.
Frank Jr. needs to find Sam immediately. If his father finds out, all hell is going to break loose in Erie Harbor.
An ’80s dance goes sideways
Hilde has no interest in going to the school dance. Matt drags her along anyway. Bridget is all dolled up and working as a chaperone, Izzy looks equally adorable and is having fun with Ethan, Donny and Spoon dress to the nines, and even Kim Collins looks fantastic.
While Bridget and Matt spend some much-needed quality time together on the dance floor, Hilde operates the new Magic Hour Chronicle t-shirt stand — courtesy of Donny’s father’s screen-printing service. She tires of sitting there doing nothing quickly and decides to follow her sister out of the gymnasium when she notices her and Ethan leaving.
Hilde finds Izzy, Ethan, and the other teenagers hanging out in the bathroom, smoking. Hilde’s reaction is one of shock, “vaping can kill you!” Izzy begs her not to tell anyone. Hilde seems to consider that, until Jessica threatens to give her a wedgie.
Sick of Jessica’s bullying, Izzy stands up to her, and the two of them wind up in a scrappy girl fight in the bathroom before both Lisko sisters run away and Jessica tells Izzy that she will ruin her life…or whatever it is mean teenage girls say.
What looks like a sweet moment between sisters sours immediately as Izzy tearfully says she hates Hilde and feels like she ruins her life.
Then, Izzy says the worst thing a TV character can say to their sibling or loved one: “I wish you would disappear.”
Izzy’s comment all but guarantees something bad is going to happen to Hilde that will riddle her with guilt over the last words spoken to her sister. And with Sam’s escape coinciding with Hilde’s disappearance, it couldn’t be happening at a worse time.
By the time Matt and Bridget find Izzy in tears by the lockers (where is Ethan? He seems to ditch Izzy at the worst moments), she still believes Hilde should go away forever, and she might get her wish granted.
Odds & Ends
- Trip calls Bridget while she’s at the dance to tell her that even though records of Sam’s van were expunged, she did manage to find the original sales receipt which proves that Sam’s van was different than the model seen on the video. Let’s hope she keeps that from the sheriff so he doesn’t dispose of even more evidence.
- Kim and Bridget are great together, I love their budding friendship.
- Sheriff Frank Sr. slaps Bridget with a misdemeanor fine of $1,000 for burying Penny’s remains in the town square. Lovely guy, that Frank, isn’t he? Bridget takes the fall for Kim.
- A few other points worth noting: Kim and Frank are sleeping together! Bridget thinks Matt should write his book about the Richie saga. Bridget is having nightmares about her daughters getting kidnapped.
The first season of Home Before Dark is now streaming on Apple TV+.