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The Cry: the big questions we have after episode 3

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Kayleigh Dray
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The Cry: we have a lot of questions after episode 3

Warning: this article contains spoilers for episode three of The Cry

Episode three of The Cry, starring Jenna Coleman and Ewan Leslie, aired at 9pm on 7 October. And, much like the first two episodes – which dealt with the staged disappearance of Alister (Leslie) and Joanna (Coleman)’s baby son, Noah – it left us with a lot of questions.

Here, Stylist’s digital editor Kayleigh Dray does her best to unravel them all. Because she wants answers, ASAP.

Who really killed baby Noah?

We now know that baby Noah died at some point during Alistair and Joanna’s journey, either on the long plane ride from Scotland or on the road from Melbourne to Wilde Bay. But how?

Well, based on what we have seen so far, it seems incredibly likely that Noah died after being given the wrong medicine on the plane – despite the fact that Jo remembers tasting the liquid inside both unlabelled bottles to make sure she gave her son the right one.

“You can’t trust your memory,” Alister informs Jo, when she explains this to him. “You were exhausted and stressed on the plane, you were out of your head with fatigue… [but] I don’t blame you.”

We later see Alister burn little Noah’s yellow bib – as in, yes, the very same bib that a shell-shocked Jo has been clutching to for comfort almost every night since Noah’s “disappearance”. But why?

Twitter conspiracy theorists reckon that the bib must have evidence of the medicine on it – and that, when Alister finally looked after Noah on the plane as Jo got some much-needed sleep, he was the one who gave the fatal dose.

It makes a lot of sense, if you think about it – especially as, when speaking about his character previously, Leslie said that Alister is “someone who likes to be in control” and slowly starts to unravel throughout the series.

“He is a tricky character,” the Top of the Lake actor continued. “I imagine he will be a tricky character for the audience.

“He’s a tricky character to play because he’s not very sympathetic.”

Where is Noah’s body?

Noah may be dead, but we have no idea where his body is. As noted previously, the couple still had him with them when they arrived at their rented cottage in Australia (a visibly distressed Jo was clutching his body in his arms when she threw up over the balcony) and Alister took the body away in a sports bag.

But where did he go?

Well, we have three theories…

  1. Alister woke up in a building site the morning after his midnight burial, so there’s every chance that he dumped his baby son’s body in the rubble there.
  2. He could have taken Noah back to the same roadside location where they discovered he had died (we were shown the scene in darkness, after all, and we know they realised Noah was dead when it was still daylight).
  3. He could have buried the body somewhere on his ex-wife’s property, to ensure that the finger of blame is pointed squarely at her.

Did Alex help Alister dispose of his son’s body?

Again, we’re drawn back to the fact that Alex (Asher Keddie) had a spade in the boot of her car – and that she had muddied fingers on the night of Noah’s “disappearance”. We know that Alister was very controlling, and that he bullied both of his partners into submissive roles, so perhaps he was able to do so once again?

Did Jo really kill her husband?

Surprise! Jo isn’t on trial for baby Noah’s murder, but for the murder of her slime-ball husband.

“I was betrayed,” she tells a court psychologist, but doesn’t reveal who betrays her, or about what. Presumably, she means Alister: we know that he’s been steadily gaslighting his wife for months on end – and that he was keen for her to believe that she, and only she, was responsible for Noah’s death. Perhaps, as the shock gave way to grief, Jo found the evidence that proved Alister had murdered their son – and decided to punish him.

However, we still have one episode to go, and we imagine there will be plenty more twists and turns along the way. With this in mind, could it be that Jo didn’t actually kill Alister herself? After all, there are plenty of other people who might want to see him dead: Alex, for example, or his daughter Chloe (Markella Kavenagh).

Even Alister’s own mum looks sickened enough by his behaviour to have bumped him off. And that’s saying something.

Could Alex and Jo have joined forces to rid the world of Alister?

We have seen both Jo and Alex manipulated and belittled by Alister – but, in this episode, we saw them both find the courage to stand up to him.

“You’re the world’s best liar,” Alex told him bluntly. Elsewhere, Jo also stood her ground and threw her husband out of their hotel room when he told her she was poisonous.

Perhaps, much like Agatha Christie’s Murder On The Orient Express, there is no “one” murderer in this story: maybe these women joined forces to rid the world of an abusive asshole?

Has Jo already been tried for Noah’s murder?

We’re yet to discover if this is a trial where she faces multiple charges, or if she has already been tried for killing her son. Judging by the atmosphere in the courtroom, though, we suspect that there is more to this trial than meets the eye…

Is The Cry based on a true story?

The Cry’s executive producer, Claire Mundell, was recently asked about the parallels between the story of the show and the disappearance of Madeleine McCann in 2007.

However, she was quick to deny that the series was based upon this tragic true-life event.

Mundell said: “There are umpteen sadly different high profile cases which have occurred over the years and there was no specific case that we were drawn upon.

“The show is an adaptation of a novel, and what interested me about the novel when I first read it was that it spoke about a very contemporary sort of crime.

“It spoke about things that are important in our contemporary world and the way we are quick to judge and the media are quick to stoke that judgment as well, but it’s based on Helen’s book.”

The final episode of The Cry will air Sunday 21 October, 9pm on BBC One. You can watch the first, second and third episodes here.

Image: BBC One

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Kayleigh Dray

Kayleigh Dray is editor of Stylist.co.uk, where she chases after rogue apostrophes and specialises in films, comic books, feminism and television. On a weekend, you can usually find her drinking copious amounts of tea and playing boardgames with her friends. 

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