The Sinner, USA Network, Pilot

(Courtesy of Brownie Harris/USA Network)

USA Network aired the highly anticipated premiere of the pilot, Episode 1, of their gripping crime drama, The Sinner, starring Jessica Biel. In the limited miniseries event, audiences are introduced to a murder mystery that doesn’t ask the “who” or the “what” — but the “why.”

At the warehouse, Cora Tannetti (Biel) handles all the numbers and deliveries for her father-in-law’s business. Her husband, Mason Tannetti (Christopher Abbott) is too chicken to ask his father/his boss for the night out. Cora’s mother-in-law babysits their son while the two are working.

During the night, Cora is nervous about being intimate with her husband. After taking her pills, Cora zones out during her husband’s love-making. She dreams of a wall and a blonde in red before waking up in the morning. After cleaning the kitchen and folding the clothes, Cora and Mason take their son to the beach. 

At the beach, Cora takes a swim past the ropes and sinks her head into the water. Mason is looking for his missing wife while holding onto his crying son. Cora finally comes out of water and has lunch with her family.

While peeling the fruit with a knife, Cora starts to zone out as she stares at a nearby couple, Frankie Belmont (Eric Todd) and Maddie (Meredith Holzman). Maddie reminds Cora of the blonde in red and something is triggered inside her to attack. She ends stabbing Frankie repeatedly with the knife before Mason takes her down.

After being arrested, Cora goes through the police process step-by-step in her bloody clothes. Mason sits in the house by himself and refuses to pick up the ringing phone. At the beach, detective  Harry Ambrose (Bill Pullman) examines Frankie’s dead body before interrogating his suspect.

Harry interrogates Cora as she confesses to the murder but doesn’t know why she did it. Even though they have a confession, Harry doesn’t have a motive. Cora doesn’t fit the profile, which leads Harry to suspect their is more to the case.

Afterwards, Harry decides to interrogate Mason, who is being hounded by the press. Mason reveals what happened after Cora stabbed Frankie. She told Maddie, “You’re safe now.”

In her cell, Cora is haunted by the murder. She cannot get the song out of her head. Cora then remembers her mother holding her deathly ill baby sister. In the morning, Cora’s conversation with her husband causes Mason to walk out on her.

After having an affair with his dominatrix, Harry interrogates Frankie’s friend. In the flashback, just before the moment of his death, Frankie looks at Cora as if he recognized her. This is why Frankie didn’t fight back after he was being stabbed.

Harry races to the courthouse as Cora is about to plead guilty.

The Sinner airs Wednesdays at 10pm on USA Network.

– By Jorge Solis

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