Did you see the latest episode of the Australian prison drama Wentworth? Televised in Australia on Tuesday, 18 June 2019, the Jonathan Brough directed “Karen” delivers a seriously blood-curdling closing scene.
Like a lot of television productions, the episode opens with a brief cap of the season thus far. The closing scene in the previous instalment, “Atonement,” sees Narelle Stang (Morgana O’Reilly) telling Rita Connors (Leah Purcell) she wants her to kill Kaz Proctor (Tammy Macintosh). Kaz, otherwise known as the Red Right Hand, is the principal person responsible for Narelle’s brother being paralysed. Consequently, Narelle is seeking revenge on Kaz. Because Narelle knows Rita was a police officer prior to being in prison, she is blackmailing Rita into doing her dirty work.
SPOILER ALERT: If you have yet to watch the latest episode, feel free to stop reading now. There are spoilers in this article.
The opening scene finds the women of Cell Block H-1 unable to sleep. One by one, beginning with Rita and Kaz, the women begin to gather in the common area. When Sue ‘Boomer’ Jenkins (Katrina Milosevic) shows up, she talks about her sexy dream featuring Dr Greg Miller (David de Lautour).
Even though the new psychiatrist is completely oblivious to the way Boomer sees him, there is no ambiguity to the way she talks about him. It’s obvious she is wanting a rooting.
In contrast to Boomer’s sexy dream, Narelle spoke about a nightmare revolving around the time an undercover cop shot her. From the way Ruby Mitchell (Rarriwuy Hick) looks at her sister, Rita, they both know which cop she is talking about.
The Next Morning…
Marie Winter (Susie Porter) is out of medical. The last time we saw Kaz near Marie, Kaz was tossing a bomb into Marie’s cell. Kaz had made the bomb from cleaning materials and garden fertiliser. To Acting Governor Will Jackson’s (Robbie Magasiva) surprise, Kaz had apparently told Marie “she had nothing to worry about.”
When the kitchen detail arrives to begin work on making breakfast, the women find prison officers Jake Stewart (Bernard Curry) and Sean Brody (Rick Donald) conduction a search of the recently delivered food supplies. Jake found a stash of drugs hidden within the delivery. Consequently, because Vicky Kosta (Artemis Ioannides) is in charge of the kitchen, he immediately wanted to slot her for having drugs brought into the prison. Both Sean and Will correctly observed Jake had no evidence to suspect Vicky of being responsible for the drug shipment. Jake pointed to the prisoner’s recent history as justification for slotting her, but Will would not hear it. Since there was no evidence pinning Vicky to the drugs, she was not getting thrown into solitary.
When the acting governor left the two prison officers to finish up their search, Jake tore into Sean for not backing him up in front of the women. Jake did not appreciate Sean pointing out there was no evidence supporting his claim Vicky was responsible for the drugs.
Narelle walks in like she owns the place. She is not happy with Rita not taking an easy opportunity to kill Kaz. Even though there was ample opportunity for Rita to take Kaz out, it would not have been the smart thing to do. Rita correctly observes “it’s a locked until.”
Ruby confronts her sister about Narelle. Rita didn’t tell Ruby about Narelle blackmailing her because she did not want to worry her little sister. Right now, only Narelle and Ruby know Rita was a cop. If Rita doesn’t do what Narelle wants, everyone will know the truth about Rita’s past.
Later, Rita comes clean to her sister about what it is Narelle wants from her. “She wants me to kill Kaz,” Rita told Ruby. Rita cannot bring herself to contemplate killing Kaz or Narelle.
Boomer and Allie Novak (Kate Jenkinson), with Acting Deputy Governor Linda Miles’s (Jacqueline Brennan) assistance, have arranged a conjugal visit for Liz Birdsworth (Celia Ireland). Liz blurts out she “can’t afford $500 for a shag.” It’s all good because the funding has been taken care of. All Liz must do is show up.
Marie tries to get Will to agree to Vicky moving to the laundry so that she has some muscle on her side if Kaz tries anything. The real reason Marie wants Vicky in the laundry is that it would be easier to get drug shipments into the prison via hotel services than it would with kitchen delivers. All Will says is that he will think about the transfer.
In the Hospital…
Governor Vera Bennett (Kate Atkinson) switched shifts with Linda so she could go to the hospital for an ultrasound appointment. While the Wentworth governor thought she was having a boy, Vera is apprehensively nervous when she discovers she is having a girl.
When Jake asks Vera about her hospital visit, she seems angry. He only wants to know if everything is fine with the baby. He is the father, after all. Despite, Jake being the father, Vera is determined to raise her daughter without Jake’s assistance.
Moving to the Laundry…
Vicky tells Kaz the acting governor is moving her to the laundry. When she gets there, according to Kaz, she will be taking over the steam press. Kaz is not remotely amused by Vicky’s comments.
Kaz correctly observes Marie is playing Will like a fiddle. Will is too blinded by the possibility of Kaz going after Marie to realise it’s all about the drugs. When the acting governor asks Kaz what she means, she reveals she knows he is “f***ing” Marie. This revelation comes as a shock to Will. Consequently, he feels obligated to tell Marie Kav knows of their sexual intimacy.
Will is concerned there will be an investigation if people discover he is having an affair with Marie. Kaz is “Top Dog.” She has significant sway with both the prisoners and Vera. While Will is troubled by what Kaz knows, Marie doesn’t seem that bothered by it. Could Marie know something the acting governor is unaware of?
As for Vicky, instead of relocating from the kitchen to the laundry, she will be in janitorial. Because of plans to bring drugs in via hotel services, Will’s decision will not go down well with Vicky.
In the Staff Break Room…
Vera and Greg talk about the baby. While the governor apologies for unloading her problems on the prison psychiatrist, Greg is fine with it. Greg intimates “he will send [Vera] the bill later.” This, of course, makes Vera smile. Consequently, the governor is a tad more relaxed. Because Vera was not close to her mother, having a daughter raises significant issues for the prison governor. “She was difficult,” Vera tells Greg. Vera has justifiable concerns. What if Vera ends up being just as bad a mother as her mother was? What id Vera’s daughter is just like her? It is history in a never-ending loop.
“Parenting isn’t genetic,” Greg said. “It’s learned behaviour.” Since Vera knows from her mother what not to do, there is a good chance the governor will not emulate the mistakes that were made.
In the Exercise Yard…
Marie and Kaz finally confront each other about Will. Even though Marie tells Kaz she is done with Will, there is something about Kaz’ facial expression which indicates she does not believe a word she is hearing from Marie. Kaz does not just want an end to Marie’s relationship with Will, she wants her to tell Allie everything. From a distance, Allie is watching the two women conversing. She is unaware of what they are talking about.
Later, when Allie asks Marie about what she and Kaz were talking about in the exercise yard, Marie lies. She brushes Allie off with some lame response about Kaz apologising. From the way Allie reacts to Marie’s lie, it looks like she bought into it. There is the possibility she is faking it for the sake of Marie, but then, she could also be blinded by her love.
In the Locker Room…
Jake speaks to Greg about Vera. The prison officer, because Vera is carrying his baby, is increasingly jealous of the growing friendship between the governor and Greg. Accidentally, Greg lets it slip Vera is having a girl. Jake was not aware of what the child’s gender is.
Jake is incensed by Vera telling Greg the gender of their baby before telling him. Consequently, he confronts the prison governor. Jake wants to be involved in the baby’s life. He is “trying his hardest to keep the prison safe” for Vera because she will not allow him to do anything else.
As a result of Jake storming into Vera’s office, the governor takes a moment to visit Greg. She is not happy he told Jake the baby is a girl. That is something she should have been able to tell Jake herself. In Greg’s defence, he was completely unaware Jake did not know the baby’s gender when he was speaking to Jake in the locker room.
Eventually, Vera gives Jake a photograph of their unborn baby daughter.
Liz’s Conjugal Visit…
It’s been a while since Liz has been with a man. Consequently, when she meets Vince Spencer (Steve Nation), Liz is a little bit nervous.
Unfortunately, Vince is not listed in the cast list on the IMDb episode page. Considering how IMDb pages frequently do not reference all characters in a given episode, Vince’s absence from the page is not completely unexpected.
Vince takes a Viagra pill. When Liz is not looking, he takes a second one. This second pill could be a bad idea.
Liz did exactly what she told the women she would do. She “f***ed his brains out. Vince’s heart must have given out because he is as dead as a doornail. Not surprisingly, Liz is seriously stressed out. Liz immediately gets Linda to look at Vince. Linda initially thinks they are pranking her but when the acting deputy governor checks for a pulse, she is every bit as freaked out as Liz. Before Liz can close the door, Sean walks in on Linda, Liz and the now dead Vince. Vince taking two Viagra pills was a mistake, clearly.
“What the f*** happened? Sean asks. Linda faked the paperwork. Vince was a sex worker. While Sean clearly finds this hilarious, the same cannot be said for either Liz or Linda. Linda could find herself unemployed.
Sean kind of saves the day for both Liz and Linda. While Liz goes back to H-1, Linda shreds the paperwork showing Vince was in the building. Sean tells the acting deputy governor to go to the CCTV ROOM and turn the cameras off in the loading dock. When Linda asks Sean where he is going to take Vince, the new prison officer simply responds, “out of the prison.”
Back in the Locker Room…
Linda is still stressed out about Vince’s untimely death. Sean has Vince’s body in the boot of his car. Remember, this is an Australian television series. Like the British, the Australian’s call the truck of the car the boot. Why do they do this? I don’t know. I don’t know why Americans call it the truck. It is what it is.
Sean placed the body in the boot of his care because it would not fit the staff room fridge. Linda was not amused by her new colleague’s off-hand humour. Obviously, Sean would not want to dump the body in broad daylight. Doing such a thing would be seriously stupid.
The Visiting Room…
Marie has incriminating evidence on someone of significance within the community. She wants herself and Allie out of prison. This individual Marie is seemingly blackmailing can make this happen. If he doesn’t, the evidence will be leaked to the media. His life as he knows it will be over. Who is it? Marie and her lawyer do not state his name.
This conversation does not go unnoticed by Kaz. Kaz is watching Marie and her lawyer from across the room. Is Marie still working on an appeal or is she doing something else?
In Liz’s Cell…
Liz has a mental break from reality. None of the women understands what’s going on that could have caused Liz to have a complete mental breakdown.
The women get Greg. “It was a psychotic episode,” Greg said. “She seemed fine. I don’t know what brought it on.”
Vera asks if it could be a reaction to the medications Greg has Liz on, but no one has reacted to it in that way previously. As a precaution, Greg agrees to lover the dosage. Vera clears it with Will for Kaz to stay with Liz overnight in medical.
Rita tries to take Narelle out…
From the way this scene is set up, it initially looks like Rita is following Kaz to the shower block. Because Kaz is told Marie might be in the shower block, she heads in that direction. Both Kat and Narelle have their hoodies pulled up over their heads.
As Rita pulls a wine-bottle type spike from her jacket pocket, Kaz appears almost out of nowhere and stops her from doing anything foolish.
Back in Kaz’s cell, Kaz gets Rita to tell her what Narelle has on her. Rita reveals her background as a cop. Because Rita mentions certain files, Kaz remembers what she saw in the visitor room. Kaz leaves the cell.
Marie finds Kaz going through the documents she is using to get herself and Allie out of prison. Because of her relationship with Allie, Marie is in a difficult position.
Blood on the Floor…
The attack was quick. It was impossible for Kaz to have seen it coming. Within seconds, a knife was at her throat and it was slicing through her skin. It is remarkable the attacker could have gotten away from Kaz without getting a drop of blood on herself.
Earlier in the episode, Marie tells Will, “short of cutting [Kaz’s] throat, there are no guarantees [she will keep quiet].” Is Marie responsible for Kaz’s death? What of Narelle?
Kaz did write the letter M with her own blood on the floor before dying.
Narelle wanted Rita to kill Kaz. It is possible the attacker could have been Ruby. With Rita having protected Ruby for years, Ruby might have seen her opportunity to return the favour.