The Undoing episode 2 recap: how many lies has Jonathan told?

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The second instalment of Sky’s new crime drama The Undoing is here, and it was a rollercoaster ride to say the least. Warning: this article contains spoilers for episode two of The Undoing.

The second episode of The Undoing was nothing short of a rollercoaster ride. For a series which started off slowly, things sure did heat up in episode two – if you looked away from the screen for a second, you might have missed another unexpected twist in this rollercoaster ride of an episode.

The episode started off where episode one left off – with Grace (Nicole Kidman) calling hotels in Cleveland in an attempt to track down her missing husband, Jonathan (Hugh Grant).

Grace is (understandably) confused by what’s going on – besides the fact that Jonathan left his phone at home and hasn’t tried to reach her by other means, there’s also the fact that Elena (a mother at Grace and Jonathan’s son’s school) has been murdered. Coincidence? The police don’t seem to think so.

During dinner at her dad’s (Donald Sutherland) rather fancy apartment, two police officers arrive and ask her to come with them to the police station, where they reveal a number of life-shattering truths in quick succession; not only does Jonathan no longer work at the hospital, but he was fired after a disciplinary hearing. The reason? Inappropriate contact with a patient’s family member. That patient? Elena’s son.

Basically, things get real, quick – and Grace is left to grapple with the possibility that Jonathan had something to do with Elena’s murder.

But these aren’t the only revelations which Grace has to deal with. Later on in the episode, she learns that Jonathan hired her best friend, Sylvia, to provide him with legal advice for his disciplinary hearing. And elsewhere, the police tell Grace there’s a chance that Elena’s baby is actually Jonathan’s. Phew. 

Next, in an attempt to escape the media frenzy unfurling outside the family’s apartment and Henry’s school, Grace takes herself and her son to their beach house outside the city.

However, just when Grace is beginning to wrap her head around all the revelations which have been thrown her way, Jonathan makes a reappearance and tries to convince Grace he wasn’t involved in Elena’s murder. He admits the pair did have an affair – and that he saw her on the night she was murdered – but that he’d stormed out after the pair had had an argument about her obsession with Grace and Henry, only to return to find her bludgeoned to death.  

Despite Jonathan’s insistence that he’s innocent, the episode comes to a close as Grace breaks down and calls the police, pleading them to come and arrest her husband. Talk about a rollercoaster, right?

If the second episode of The Undoing has left you with more questions than answers (including “how does Nicole Kidman’s hair look so good?”), you’re not alone. But don’t fear – Stylist’s junior digital writer Lauren Geall is here to try and unpick it all.  

Why is there so much secrecy surrounding Jonathan’s dismissal?

When Grace goes to the hospital to ask Jonathan’s colleague, Stuart, whether he has heard from him, things get pretty weird. Sure, we learn later on that Jonathan has been fired from the hospital, but it would have been pretty easy for Stuart to shake Grace off and tell her he hadn’t heard anything.

Instead, he gets all cryptic with Grace, and tells her he can’t speak to her about Jonathan because of “strict terms”. It’s clear he signed some sort of non-disclosure agreement when it came to Jonathan’s dismissal – but why is there so much hush-hush about the whole thing?

We know Jonathan wanted to keep things secret from Grace – but why go to the extreme of making all your colleagues sign a non-disclosure agreement? Could there be more to Jonathan’s dismissal than the police are letting on? 

Sylvia in The Undoing
The Undoing episode two: why did Jonathan lie to Sylvia?

Why did Jonathan tell Sylvia the disciplinary hearing was over when it wasn’t?

Seeking legal help is a good idea when you’re faced with accusations as serious as the ones Jonathan was facing – so why did he dismiss his lawyer halfway through the hearing?

It’s not as if Sylvia was able to tell Grace anything – there’s such a thing as client-attorney privilege after all – and even if she did, she already knew everything she needed to know about Jonathan’s case.

Is it possible that the hospital uncovered more evidence Jonathan didn’t want Sylvia to know about?

Is Elena’s baby actually Jonathan’s?

There were some things we saw coming in this episode (hello, Jonathan as the murder suspect), but this certainly wasn’t one of them.

However, now we know a bit more about what’s been going on with Jonathan, it seems likely that this is the case – and could explain why Elena was being so intense with her baby when Grace first met her. 

The policeman in The Undoing
The Undoing episode two: the police seem convinced that Grace isn't telling the truth.

Why are the policemen being so aggressive towards Grace?

Even if the police do have reason to suspect that Grace knows about her husband’s whereabouts, why are they being so shady and aggressive about it?

Nicole Kidman’s performance as Grace really makes this point extra heart breaking – her utter disbelief and shock at what the policemen are telling her makes their harsh approach even more despicable.

Why is Elena’s perfume in Jonathan’s office?

When Grace returns to the family’s apartment after her interview with the police, she discovers Elena’s perfume buried underneath a pile of Jonathan’s things.

However, when Grace sniffs the perfume, she recalls the scent of Elena at the fundraiser. My question is this: how is Elena’s perfume in Jonathan’s office if she wore that perfume to the fundraiser the night she was murdered? Did Jonathan and Elena meet at the house while Grace was still out? If not, how did her belongings make their way to Grace and Jonathan’s home?

So many questions, and so little answers. 

What was Elena upset about on the night of the fundraiser?

If Jonathan is telling the truth and he wasn’t involved in Elena’s murder, it seems likely that her death has something to do with whatever she was upset about on the night of the fundraiser.

We know it isn’t Jonathan – besides the fact that he says the pair argued after the fundraiser, we know that Jonathan travelled to the event with Grace and he didn’t leave her side throughout the event.

So, what was Elena upset about? And could it have something to do with the men who were following her around at the event? 

Nicole Kidman in The Undoing
The Undoing episode two: it's clear that Jonathan has left Grace in the dark on more than one occasion.

Is that body really Elena?

I may be getting a little bit dramatic but stay with me a second.

Elena’s body has been horrifically beaten – in most of the close-up shots, all we can see is the shiny reflection of blood. It’s not like you can even see any of her identifying features.

My question is this: is there a chance that the woman lying in Elena’s art studio isn’t actually her? That she orchestrated her murder to watch Jonathan’s life fall apart? That she could have been the person watching Grace on the beach, not Jonathan?

It might be a long shot, but it would make for a pretty dramatic conclusion. 

Episode two of The Undoing airs tonight on Sky Atlantic at 9pm. It is also available to watch on NOW TV. 

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Images: Sky

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