It took all season, but Clarice finally put together the pieces of her fractured psyche.
The former FBI agent even managed to find herself participating in ending Nils Hagen’s nefarious activities on Clarice Season 1 Episode 13.
As many times as Clarice has been taken captive, it’s a good thing that she’s able to use her big brain to think her way out of dangerous situations.
Unfortunately, Clarice had a soft spot for Tyson, so she barely hesitated before buzzing him up. After all, they belonged to the same support group for messed-up people with daddy issues.
She blurted out her revelation about her father’s real character, not the idealized version upon which she had built her life. Sadly, Tyson hadn’t had a similar epiphany yet.
Clarice also had a blind spot where Tyson was concerned. So by the time she checked her page from ViCAP, her fate had been sealed. She held her own against Hagen’s goons, but she was out of her depth.
But Clarice is a scrapper. Just like in the past, when she got captured, she began plotting an escape for herself and the other women held at the animal-testing facility as soon as she discovered the flimsy locks.
Granted, that went nowhere, and the women weren’t freed until ViCAP raided the place. But it was the thought that counted.
Clarice had the bad luck to have been brought to the facility at the same time that Hagen arbitrarily decided to make his evil experiment disappear.
Hagen was full of himself and liked to talk about his life and his actions. So Clarice played on his vanity to enlighten Tyson.
Tyson was already involved in sex trafficking and was an accessory to serial rape and murder to please his father. So why she thought that would reach Tyson was hard to say.
Fortunately, Clarice had help coming that she didn’t know about in the form of ViCAP and Ardelia.
As soon as ViCAP stumbled on the possibility of Tyson being complicit in Hagen’s experiments, they tried to warn Clarice. Why did she ignore the page since ViCAP wouldn’t have contacted her as a former agent unless it was urgent?
Wouldn’t cell phones have been handy back then? A pager message just isn’t the same as a text.
At least Ardelia recognized that Clarice’s special necklace being left behind was a sign that she was in trouble.
It was enjoyable watching Esquivel going into action to save his favorite teammate. That scene of him taking down a fellow Ranger showed how dangerous he could be when he’s not keeping himself under control.
It was a totally illegal way to extract intel from a source. That’s why Esquivel reported himself later, especially since there was no case to prosecute anymore.
Most importantly, like in the military, he got the target he needed for ViCAP to attack.
And once again, Ruth eventually didn’t buckle under political pressure, despite the presence of a sleazy politician in Alastor’s pocket listening in on the conversation.
Don’t expect Ruth to remain Attorney General long, especially after she appointed a special prosecutor to look into which politicians were obstructing the investigation of Alastor.
But she won’t be the only tainted politician going down. And she can just go home to Tennessee and take care of Catherine.
The alarm raised by the raid created an opening for Clarice, who escaped after Hagen coldly executed one of his bodyguards for rushing him.
Clarice, unfortunately, had the bad luck to run into the lab that housed Hagen’s “children,” a chamber of horrors with shelves lined with defective embryos.
That when was Clarice did her best profiling, piecing together that Tyson’s mother was another of Hagen’s victims who escaped him. Hagen, in turn, had tracked down his miracle baby, killed Tyson’s mother, and swept his heir off his feet.
This drove Tyson to shoot and kill Hagen, then eventually himself. So Clarice cleaned up the Alastor mess largely by herself when she technically wasn’t even an active agent.
I thought Krendler was a goner when he got shot. When a show is struggling ratings-wise as Clarice has been, one way to cut costs is to shrink the cast, and Michael Cudlitz was arguably the biggest name in the cast.
Fortunately, Krendler survived because ViCAP just wouldn’t be the same without his leadership. We got a glimpse of what having Clarke in charge would look like.
It was appropriate that Clarice’s biggest breakthrough came when she was visiting Catherine at the institution.
Catherine’s offhand remark about Ruth protecting her sparked a realization in Clarice that her mother sent her away to protect her from her father.
It was sweet that Ardelia fixed and added a bead to Clarice’s necklace, giving it a special new meaning instead of the old negative one.
Clarice, at peace, hugged Ardelia goodbye then headed back to West Virginia for a much-needed reunion with her mother.
Now about Clarice’s future. It doesn’t seem to have one. It would appear a good candidate to move to Paramount+, but apparently, its production company, MGM, wanted too much per episode for that to happen.
So we say farewell to Clarice, an enjoyable updating of “The Silence of the Lambs” that not enough viewers discovered.
To binge one more time, watch Clarice online.
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Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.