We get yet another teasing explanation of Janice’s location from Jefferson at the start of Inside Man episode 4. He explains it all to Beth over the phone, sans the location of the course, and Dylan keenly listens on.
Jeff instructs Morag to take Beth to a safe house. She goes out to pick veggies and reveals that the house is actually someone else’s. She is a housebreaker and leaves Beth inside. Jefferson has a meeting with an important criminal, his ticket out of execution. Gordon, Jeff’s father-in-law, is perhaps the only one who can stop the inevitable from happening to Jeff. He has got long arms and deep connections within the bureaucracy.
Gordon wants to know the location of the head, but Jeff is less than forthcoming. Unbeknownst to both, the Warden is recording their entire conversation – both audio and video. There is something he is anticipating because the guards on duty are also not at the doors. As the conversation proceeds, Gordon gets antsier. He looks at Jeff with bloody eyes and starts beating him mercilessly. The prisoner’s hands are tied, and he just sits there and takes it. The Warden stops any intervention but looks on with a smile on his face.
Harry too is getting anxious, waiting around for the heater’s emissions to take effect. The way he plans to kill Janice is through carbon monoxide poisoning. The internet says it takes approximately two hours for the person to experience fatal symptoms and he sets a timer for the same. Janice lies in the cellar and watches Ben hit the door with a hammer in a bid to get out. Her mind wanders and goes back to the first meeting she had with the couple and Ben. He was a smart kid who didn’t want to work hard. Probably, he could ace the tests by studying at the last minute but Janice wanted him to take the shortcut by doing the work beforehand. In the exchanges, we see how Janice was indeed a stout woman. She wasn’t easily influenced and hardly let Harry get anything over her. If she wanted tea and Harry had made coffee, she would almost order him to make on.
Janice wasn’t too polite to make herself uncomfortable. Another interesting thing we glean from them is the friendship between Janice and Ben. The former tries to convince the latter that he must spend time away from the screen, as she does, and try not to think about how others see him. In the present, she tries to convince Ben that Harry did all the damage to her. It is an unusual mix of care and connivance in her eyes. She seems conflicted about Ben because she does care for him but can’t decide which way to go. The Warden shows Jeff the evidence he has gathered in his support, and he is quite happy to see that.
When Ben’s phone rings, Janice asks him not to answer it. The phone is running low on battery and his trust in her is fading. She asks him to phone and police and then makes phony promises that she will protect him. Ben knows even if the police believe his story, his father will go to jail and is hesitant to comply.
He increases the heating on the heater as he begins to suffer the effects of the gas. Gordon sees the video and The Warden threatens to release it to the FBI. He asks the criminal to follow Jeff’s directions and then get his execution cancelled. Mary is finally able to get through to Harry and explains her theory to him. She is right about how Janice tricked them both. They decide to place the laptop back in Janice’s house.
Harry gives her purse and the laptop through the window, denying her entry into the house. They have a heart-to-heart conversation, where Harry reaffirms his devotion to Ben. He will not back down, and Mary understands. She desperately wants to go to the bathroom, but Harry doesn’t allow her in. Ben receives the voicemail that Harry sends him and is even more worried. Part of his annoyance also comes from the heater. He calls his father from down there but does not tell him he is in the house. Instead, he repeatedly asks about Janice and the flash drive. He asks again and again if Harry is telling the truth and is heartbroken when his father doesn’t accept the lie.
Mary makes her way outside Janice’s apartment. Beth is on the phone with Jefferson who makes the shocking revelation that she is in fact sitting inside Janice’s apartment. Because she was never there before, she doesn’t recognize it. Mary decides going against into the restaurant next to the apartment to relieve herself and finds Beth sitting on the pot in the bathroom. Both are equally shocked to see each other. They confront one another with a nervous energy that is almost comical. Mary even picks up a butter knife to wade off Beth, who laughs at her until she gets a cut with it. Mary gets a distressing call from Ben, who reveals he is in the basement and asks her to tell him the truth about Janice. Mary panics and rushes toward her home when Harry doesn’t pick up. She backs up towards the road as she screams at Beth and gets hit by an oncoming vehicle. She dies on the spot.
When the timer on Harry’s clock buzzes again, he opens the door to the cellar. He finds a bloody Ben holding a knife and Janice, lying on the ground motionless. Ben became too crazed due to the fumes that he just wanted Janice to stop talking after she threw a hammer at his leg to switch off the heater. Harry puts Ben upstairs, opens the doors and windows, and says that he will tell the police Harry killed Janice. Beth, who had picked up Mary’s phone from the pavement, rushes toward the house with Morag. Ben runs outside in disgust as Beth arrives at the house. Morag chases after Ben, while Beth goes inside to Janice.
Harry phones the police and confesses that he killed Janice. Suddenly, Janice starts moving: she isn’t dead, yet. Harry sees this yet reports her death as he is afraid, she might rat out Ben and Mary. As he is about to finish her off, Beth intervenes. Harry lets out a frustrating rant about how he has done nothing wrong and yet is taking the blame for everything when he sees contempt and fear in Beth’s eyes. The police shortly arrive, and he is taken in.
Sometime later, he and Jeff have a chat. Jeff, who gave the wrong location to Gordon, is about to be executed in two weeks’ time. He is the one who has called Harry and explains that because he didn’t file a missing person’s report, Jeff knew Janice was at his house because he would have been the last person to see her alive. And then he says how he and Harry are alike. They’re the “inside men”, forced to confront the terrifying person that lies beneath us all. All we need is a bad day and anyone is a murderer.
For those who wondered where the title of the show came from, the season’s finale has an emphatic, shattering answer. Episode 4 concluded shockingly. The utter change in tone, tenor, and shape made it almost unrecognizable as part of the same Inside Man in episodes 1 & 2.
The writers definitely had something perverse up their sleeves for us all this while. We all were hoping somewhere deep inside for the inevitable to happen: Harry not going to jail. Despite keeping a woman against her will in his cellar, he was the perfect anti-hero, wasn’t he? A man prepared to sacrifice everything for his son and still devoted to the cause of his one true master.
Inside Man is perhaps a rarity in how every character in it is likable. One among them was a murderer who killed his wife and severed her head. There were several moments in the finale where things seemed to be in control. The rollicking last fifteen minutes changed the complexion of the season completely