Defending Jacob Season 1, Episode 7 recap: Jacob’s trial gets underway

Defending Jacob Episode 7 officially sets Jacob’s trial into motion.

In Defending Jacob Episode 7, the trial begins, and the prosecution does not hold back. At first, it looks like the trial is moving along swimmingly like maybe the defense team will win. But then a witness goes missing, and Jacob’s fascination with the macabre, like “The Cut Up Room,” comes to light and threatens to ruin everything Andy and Joanna have prepared.

What happens in Defending Jacob Episode 7?

The primary focus of this episode is set in the courtroom as Neil and Joanna go head-to-head. At the beginning of the trial, Joanna gets the “murder gene” argument thrown out, Neil is unable to use it as his defense. Unfortunately for the Barber family, Neil doesn’t need it.

I like what The Cinemaholic said about the trial suiting the show’s slow pacing. We’ve spent so much time getting to know the ins and outs of this case (or at least we think we do) that it makes the trial an immersive experience for the audience. We know what is at stake and all the clues are laid out for us, now we get to see how these attorneys will duke it out in the courtroom. It makes for very tense viewing.

At the beginning of the trial, everything goes great for Jacob. Joanna is in her element, and she cleverly works each witness to her and Jacob’s advantage. From the detective who was on the scene when Ben’s body first turned up to a blood splatter analyst, Joanna swiftly conquers every argument the prosecution attempts.

Even better is Neil’s apparent dislike for Andy, which motivates him to act out in theatrical means, like when he brandishes a “potential” murder weapon. It comes across as Neil trying to mislead the jury and cause undue speculation. His actions almost result in a mistrial.

During a recess, Andy, Joanna, Laurie, and Jacob even seem to enjoy a lunch together, confident in the direction of the trial.

But when they return to the courtroom, that’s when things begin to go belly up.

First, Neil starts to question Duffy. She tries to do her best to help Andy. Still, she has to admit that a program called Disk Scraper was discovered on Jacob’s laptop — meaning there could have been incriminating evidence discovered, but it was wiped clean before police got their hands on the device.

She is also forced to confess that they did find violent pornography on Jacob’s laptop, although Joanna tries to counter by asking if the police have ever come across a computer that didn’t have porn on it somewhere.

Defending Jacob Episode 7

Defending Jacob Episode 7 – Courtesy of Apple TV+

The real ace in the hole for the prosecution is when they call Derek to the stand. He recalls Jacob showing off his knife, and then he reveals a horrible story Jacob wrote. Before the trial, the defense team had never seen or heard about the story, but the judge allows them to admit it into evidence.

Derek reads the story word-for-word on the witness stand to chilling effect. It details the murder from start to finish, although the names have been changed. It does not look like Jacob will be able to come back from the story leaking, especially as it even shakes Andy’s belief in his son.

Related Story: Defending Jacob recap: Does Jacob have the murder gene?

Andy point-blank asks Jacob if he killed Ben while they leave the courtroom, and later that night, Laurie and Andy get into a massive fight in the kitchen. Laurie is now convinced that Jacob is a murderer, but Andy continues to deny it. While he admits that Jacob might have something off about him, he thinks that he wrote that story as more of a  fantasy than a confession.

According to him and Joanna, everything in the story correlates with details that were reported by the police. If it contained a feature that was never disclosed, then that would be the final nail in the coffin, as it doesn’t, there is potential hope.

Defending Jacob Episode 7

Defending Jacob Episode 7 – Courtesy of Apple TV+

Laurie disagrees. Both she and Andy are forced to come to terms with the gravity of the situation in a way they weren’t before, with Andy even going so far as to imply their entire marriage and family has been built on lies and fairy tales.

The next plan of action will be to put Sarah on the stand. Jacob is reluctant. He does not want to get her involved, but as Andy says,  he lost the right to have a say in his trial after the story was released. They think if they can hammer home the obsession, Ben seemed to have with Sarah; they might be able to sway the jury to see another point-of-view.

Then again, they might not have to. The end of the episode shows a tearful Leonard Patz writing a confession on paper, saying that he killed Ben. Somehow, I  get the feeling that Leonard was being coached by that big burly guy that has been stalking the Barbers.

Early in the episode, we learn that he’s part of the mafia, he’s the “muscle,” you might call it. I have a feeling he works fro Billy Barber, who has become increasingly involved in his grandson’s case. Billy calls Andy and sounds legitimately distressed about the direction his case is going. He might be a  murderer, but he genuinely doesn’t want his grandson to wind up beyond bars.

Defending Jacob Episode 7

Defending Jacob Episode 7 – Courtesy of Apple TV+

So how far would Billy go to make sure that doesn’t happen? He learns Leonard’s name for sure in this episode and asks Andy whether or not he thinks he did it. So is Billy setting Leonard up to take the fall for Jacob? Or is Leonard seriously guilty and can’t stand hiding it any longer?

Another question, what happened to Matt?  The key witness in their case and the one person who could really make people look at  Leonard again mysteriously vanishes before he can be called to the stand.  Supposedly he ran off with a girl to Florida, but is that the truth?

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What did you think about Defending Jacob Episode 7? Do you believe Leonard Patz really killed Ben? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

The season finale of Defending Jacob will premiere on Apple TV+ next Friday.

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