The Luminaries Episode 4 recap: Did [SPOILER] just kill themself?

The Luminaries Season 1, Episode 4 - Courtesy of Kristy Griffin/Starz
The Luminaries Season 1, Episode 4 - Courtesy of Kristy Griffin/Starz /

In The Luminaries Episode 4, “The Other Half,” Emery and Anna finally reunite, but their reunion isn’t the happy one you might expect. In 1866, Anna begins to lose hope and is forced to take matters into her own hands.

Caution: The following article contains spoilers for The Luminaries Episode 4.

After all the miscommunications and powers that be striving to keep Emery and Anna apart, they end up in the same place at the same time by pure chance. Emery visits Dick Mannering’s bordello and gets one of three “lucky” glasses, granting him an opportunity to win a night with one of Dick’s girls for free.

Emery and two other men are taken to the stage blindfolded, where two drag queens and Anna bounce from lap to lap in a horny game of musical chairs until the music stops. Anna and Emery are shocked to see each other, although Emery doesn’t win the game. As Anna is escorted away to spend the night with the winner, Emery chases after her with Dick forcing him away. He wants to know what she meant by her letter in the newspaper, but Dick tells him that Anna is illiterate.

Emery is consistently barred from seeing Anna by the innkeeper who looks after the girls. He eventually tells Emery to consider the possibility that Anna sold him out, hence why Francis was waiting for him that night at the hotel bar.

While all of this is happening, Anna is in an opium den across town with Mr. Sook in Chinatown. Mr. Quee (Gary Young) helps take care of Anna when she’s in a laudanum haze and happens to notice a small tear in her dress. He finds the gold embedded in the seam and steals it.

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Later, when Anna returns to town, it coincides with a physical confrontation between Emery and Francis. Having chatted with Dick Mannering, Emery now knows that Francis is a convict and firmly believes that he was waiting for him that first night as part of a set-up — and we know that to be true, as it was part of Francis and Lydia’s scheme. Francis, on the other hand, viciously attacks Emery to discover Crosbie’s whereabouts. When Emery refuses, Francis sets his sights on Anna, who has just returned to the inn.

Inside, things turn ugly fast, with Francis violently accosting Anna as Emery tries his best to protect her. The fighting culminates with Francis accidentally shoving her too hard through the window, where she tumbles off the roof and hits the ground. The force of the fall causes Anna to miscarry, and Emery is devastated on her behalf.

The Luminaries Episode 4
The Luminaries Episode 4 – Courtesy of Starz /

Emery does know where Crosbie is staying; as you’ll recall that the two men met in the previous episode alongside Tauwhare. Emery warns him that Francis knows where he is; when he saw Francis shoving Anna’s head in the water basin, he panicked and told him. Crosbie is understanding, as he cares for Anna, too. The two men know they’ll have to proceed carefully if they want to ensure she isn’t tried as an accomplice in theft and the damage to Francis’s face.

Emery’s newfound rage against Francis causes him to stake Aurora’s claim in a tailing pile, which will never make any money since it’s nothing more than a pile of gravel and rubble. Well, then Mr. Quee takes all the money he found in Anna’s dress to the bank. The teller is immediately suspicious. As a Chinese man, the racist infrastructures of the era relegate Mr. Quee to panning tailing piles, and there is no conceivable way he could have gotten all that gold from one.

Luckily, Emery intervenes, and they pretend that the gold came from the Aurora claim, but Emery is hesitant to log it in a book. Whatever he earns money-wise, half will go to Francis, and Emery doesn’t want Francis to get a single pound. That’s the whole reason he claimed a tailing pile in the first place! Angry, Emery flings all the gold Mr. Quee took across the Aurora tailing pile. “Half of nothing is nothing. Do you see? He pleases me. I please him back. That’s the point. It’s my claim. It’s my gold. It stays in the ground.”

Undeterred, Mr. Quee hangs around and picks up all the gold and then gets it shaped into the gold bars with Aurora stamped on it, but Emery implores him to understand that he can’t take it to the bank because Francis is his partner, not Mr. Quee. He would get half.

Bitter and resentful, Emery takes refuge with Crosbie and says he’s at the point where he’s willing to break his contract with Francis and go to jail if need be. He doesn’t want that man to get any money. He’d rather give Francis’s half to Anna. Crosbie tells him to put his money where his mouth is and writes an official new contract, signing his own name as the witness. But before Emery can sign it, he passes out at the table. When he wakes up, Crosbie is gone.

The Luminaries Episode 4
The Luminaries Episode 4 – Courtesy of Starz /

The Luminaries Episode 4 recap: Anna hits rock bottom and tries to kill herself

In 1866, Dick adamantly questions Anna about what happened the night Crosbie died. She stands by her story that she doesn’t know. She is still desperate to find Emery, who has vanished and could be the only person to make sense of what happened that night.

With Crosbie dead, Lydia wastes no time arriving in Hokitika to play the role of grieving widow so she can claim his gold. The bank teller informs her that she can’t because Crosbie’s gold might not actually be his. The gold bars are stamped with Emery’s claim, Aurora, and Emery hasn’t been seen since the night Crosbie died.

Another important reunion happens in The Luminaries Episode 4, between Lydia and Anna in the wake of Crosbie’s death. Things are tense as ever between them. I think this show is at its best when Hewson and Green get to play off one another. Both women are dressed in black in mourning for Crosbie. “It suits you, the color. I assume you’re wearing it for Crosbie, but of course, you have so many things to mourn,” Lydia purrs.

Interestingly, the innkeeper has no problem granting Lydia access to Anna’s bedroom when she’s not there, whereas he refused Emery the same courtesy. Lydia immediately ransacks Anna’s wardrobe and is furious to discover all the seam gold is missing.

Assuming Anna is responsible for the missing gold, Lydia confronts her in the street and threatens to have her hanged. Having watched the whole encounter, Mannering questions Anna as to what’s going on. Fed up, she quits on the spot.

Lydia makes good on her word. She uses Anna’s old change purse with an empty vial of laudanum and a departure ticket to stash at the scene of the crime before guiding Shepherd, the jailer, to find it, framing Anna for Crosbie’s murder.

The news spreads like wildfire through the town. When Anna returns, she sees damning headlines smearing her name. Couple that with the fact she’s now going to be charged rent with money she doesn’t have (since she quit), Emery still missing and Anna feels abandoned and as if she’s hit rock bottom.

The final straw that breaks the camel’s back comes when she enters her bedroom and finds her drug dealer waiting for her. He’s pissed that Anna’s vial was found because it came from his lab and implicates him. He doesn’t believe she was framed or that she’s sober, so he starts tearing apart her room in search of a secret stockpile of laudanum. Anna pulls her gun on him and demands he stop but can’t bring herself to shoot him. Instead, she aims the gun at her heart and pulls the trigger! Is this it for Anna Wetherell?

The Luminaries Episode 4
The Luminaries Episode 4 – Courtesy of Starz /

The Luminaries Episode 4 recap: What is Alistair Lauderback’s involvement?

Alistair makes an error while giving a speech to the town. When questioned on the murder and Crosbie’s widow Lydia, he calls her by her maiden name, despite claiming to have never met Crosbie. Shepherd calls him for questioning, and Alistair claims he went to find Crosbie that fateful night to apologize for his previous affair with Lydia.

He swears on a Bible that it was the first and only time he ever legitimately met Crosbie, and by the time he got there, Emergy was gone, Crosbie was dead, and Anna was unconscious — hence why he brought her body back to town.

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What did you think about The Luminaries Episode 4? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

New episodes of The Luminaries Season 1 air Sunday nights at 9:30 p.m. ET on Starz.