Almost Human – Finale Recap: He Flipped a Van Once
Almost Human closed out its first season tonight with a finale that reopened the case that got John Kennex’s father killed. Meanwhile, Dorian’s performance was up for review.
Episode 13 of Season 1 of Almost Human, “Straw Man,” was the Season 1 Finale! When a copycat killer obsessed with the case that ended up getting Kennex’s (Karl Urban) father killed rears his ugly head, it’s John who must stop history from repeating itself. Dorian (Michael Ealy) spent his finale time juggling helping his partner with attempting to ace the assessment of his work on the force. Here is the Recap and Review of Season 1 Episode 13 of Almost Human, “Straw Man”! It was the Season 1 Finale!
Episode 13 opened with our introduction to the man we came to know as the copycat killer of the Straw Man, a murderer known for gutting his victims and stuffing them with straw. This copycat stayed true to the form of his hero, luring young drifters and homeless youth down dark alleys by tempting them with false promises of hot meals and safe beds. This copycat, Glen, was clearly ill, roaming the streets in a wheelchair while nursing strange wounds and rashes on his flesh. Still, his polite charm was enough to convince his first victim to trust him. Before long, she was incapacitated and hauled off in the back of a van. The next day, her straw-stuffed body was found dumped in another location just outside The Wall.
I don’t think I necessarily needed the visual of Kennex cutting through the girl’s stitches to reveal the stuffing to Dorian, but I guess the intended impact was made. John, who seemed more so frustrated than afraid, confided in Dorian that this case was a special one. The first man to commit such heinous crimes had been put away for life by his father. Now, it was his duty to do the same to this new psychopathic killer. Back at headquarters, Maldonado (Lili Taylor) and Valerie (Minka Kelly) added their brainpower to the mix and the group managed to piece together that whoever was acting as a copycat most likely visited his inspiration, a man named Michael Costa who sat rotting in a prison cube.
The trip to visit Michael Costa took a strange turn. The man, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia, was put on decent meds upon his incarceration, rendering him levelheaded and quite nice. This wasn’t the type of man to commit a terrible string of murders. He was simply sick and suffered from time lapses in his sanity. Could someone have planted DNA to make it look as though this innocent person with sanity issues had committed crimes he knew nothing about? According to Costa, the only one to believe his innocence was Kennex’s father, much to our surprise. John’s father admitted to helping to see the wrong man put behind bars and subsequently worked to have him freed. Unfortunately, he was seemingly snuffed out just a few weeks later. Even more suspicious was the fact that John’s dad’s case files were all locked up.
Thanks to some help from Maldonado, John’s father’s those same files were unlocked, and Kennex began sifting through the information privately almost immediately. Dorian, meanwhile, continued to analyze the victim’s corpse with Rudy (Mackenzie Crook). The two quickly realized that the girl had both a prick mark on her finger and surprisingly sterile nails for a homeless girl who’d been roughing it on the streets. Everybody has a little something under their nails, even the sterilized body of a murder victim. With some clues left behind by his father, Kennex knew that the key to connecting the victims lied in their feet, but why? Upon further investigation, the trio came to the conclusion that this latest victim was flatfooted.
It was Rudy who eventually pieced together the entire puzzle. Almost Human introduced a piece of technology here known as an “organic printer.” Basically, it’s a contraption that has the ability to rewrite organic data in order to replicate it. Older models, like one in Rudy’s lab, would scan every outside molecule of an object for duplication; however, it could never scan the bottom of anything due to the fact that this object would need to sit on the ground of the scanner. Meaning, an outdated organic printer would essentially never be able to duplicate the bottom of a human foot. Thus, we were looking at a phony, flatfooted faux corpse of a girl who could very well still be alive somewhere.
Another victim and another fake corpse came complete with another prick mark on her finger. Thus, the team was given another connection. Considering the background of both abducted girls, Kennex easily deduced that they were most likely plucked from shelters, places that offered custom tailored meds and food pills based off of a blood reading, hence the pricked finger tips. Obviously, this killer formerly thought to be a copycat wasn’t nearly as clever as he thought he was, though he did manage to peg his past crimes on poor Michael Costa for quite some time. Maldonado concocted a smart scheme to flush the criminal out of the shelters. Sending MXs to forty-three of the fort-five in the city, she’d leave only two options open for reaping. The Straw Man, of course, wouldn’t abduct someone in front of an MX who’d clearly be searching for him.
It must have been the spirit of the finale that drove Almost Human to give us our first endearing scene with Detective Paul (Michael Irby). Paul masqueraded as a homeless man outside of one of the remaining shelters, eventually trading playful jabs with a young man sporting some super flashy sunglasses at night. In the end, Paul gifted the boy a night in a nearby hotel room out of the goodness of his heart. This led me to believe that maybe Detective Paul has spent some time on the street himself. Unfortunately, his new young buddy never made it to that warm hotel room. Instead, Paul found his glasses lying with the trash. A van speeding away tipped him off for sure, prompting him to get the team onboard for street security reads. From headquarters, Valerie was easily able to peg Glen as the man who’d abducted Paul’s new friend, and Kennex and Dorian were sent directly to his lab and lair.
In Glen’s workspace, Dorian managed to find several victims locked away in pods through heat scans. Kennex, meanwhile, ended up duking it out with the man who previously ended up getting his father killed in the wake of his experiments. Of course, it was a glorious moment to witness Kennex putting down the criminal responsible for his father’s death. Now that was redemption! As it turned out, the Straw Man was a human cyborg in the making. Truly ill with a degenerative disease plaguing his nervous system, he fought to survive by creating cybernetic parts. These victims from over the years were his test subjects. Glen came up with a clever underhanded means of incriminating Kennex’s father by somehow sneaking stolen technology from the police’s evidence locker and selling it on the black market. Framing Kennex’s dad not only ruined his reputation, it rendered his word totally useless in court. Thus, Glen had a safeguard in case he managed to piece together the puzzle.
The Season Finale of Almost Human closed with a couple of awesome positive moments. As Maldonado put it, John had cleared his father’s good name and completed his final work. Dorian, meanwhile, passed his assessment with flying colors thanks to one especially glowing review from John. He’d spent the entirety of Episode 13 stressing, thanks in part to Rudy’s worrisome ways, but had his spot on the force renewed by the show’s close. As a thank you, Dorian surprised Kennex at a local noodle bar with a brand spankin’ new synthetic leg. In truth, Dorian was the entire reason why John decided to remain on the force.
What did you think of the Almost Human Season 1 Finale, “Straw Man”? Did Episode 13 satisfy you, or do you with we’d learned more about Insyndicate by now? Did you like the way the season ended with a nice moment between John and Dorian?
Thanks for reading my Recap and Review of the Almost Human Season 1 Finale, Episode 13, “Straw Man”!