Could you imagine walking into a mall on Black Friday and finding a dead body waiting for you? That’s exactly what Crews and Reese faced on this week’s episode of Life. On top of that, they had all the Thanksgiving drama that comes with having a family, or an ex-wife.
The guy at the mall, Mitchell, is definitely dead. He’s lying with a snapped neck by the Christmas tree surrounded by brightly wrapped fake presents. Only, the security guard can’t close the entire mall on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving and the biggest shopping day of the year) so at precisely 6 a.m. the doors open and a mob of people bust in and mess up the crime scene. To brighten Crews’ and Reese’s day, the mob made a miracle happen: A dead man got up and walked away. Well, either that or some one moved him. Huh. I wonder which is more likely.
Should be easy enough to find a missing body, though. Or so you would think. What’s not so easy is getting any information on Mitchell. He doesn’t have any family. Doesn’t have any friends to think of and everyone that Reese and Crews investigate have a solid alibi for the time Mitchell was killed. It was Thanksgiving after all. The only person ever even seen with Mitchell is a girl who works at the hat kiosk. But she’s way too young to be hanging out with Mitchell. And according to her, and her kiosk neighbor, neither of them really knew Mitchell but they know that his body is missing. Funnier still is that even claim not to know the guy who runs the kiosk directly next to them, Zack.
What’s so odd about Zack, you ask? Oh nothing. Unless you consider that he’s closed on the busiest shopping day of the year. There is a phone number to call, though. When Crews calls it, he and Reese hear mall music in the background so they know the guy is close. They continue to call him until they hear a phone ring at exactly the same time. The guy, who is actually a teenage kid, ignores the call and Crews’ phone hangs up. They follow him through a few “Do Not Enter” doors, finally stopping at one door. This must be where he hid the body.
No body but it is obvious from the cots and clothes that he lives there. When they pull back a curtain to another room, they find his younger sister sitting on the bed. What the? Relax, it’s not that kind of crime. At least not on Zack’s end. His father died of cancer a few years ago and his mother followed shortly in a car accident. Family Services was going to split up the kids so they ran. Now, of course, Tidwell is going to call Family Services but Reese talks him out of it. They just need to find a relative who’ll take them in. Meanwhile, Zack said he didn’t hear anything the night of the murder, but there is something about him that says he knows a little more.
Zack isn’t talking so they turn their attention back to the other two kiosk kids. Especially since Crews found out that the girl and Mitchell were seen quite a lot together in a lingerie store. Gross. She looks about 17 and he was definitely not 17. When Crews and Reese find them at the mall, they’ve started working at the wrapping booth. The girl takes the item and hands it to the guy who then goes behind a curtain to wrap the present. Um, yeah, who lets some one take their $300 X-box behind a curtain to wrap it. Apparently, a lot of people are too trusting because when they catch the kids (who had been swapping out the real presents with fruit cake), they have an entire apartment full of merchandise. Such loving children they are.
Crews and Reese interrogate them again, separately, but both not only insist that they didn’t kill Mitchell but that Mitchell isn’t even dead. He was pronounced dead so why won’t believe that he is. Finally, the girl admits that Dave the security guard told them Mitchell isn’t dead. This way they would keep running their scams and not open their mouths. Guess they don’t love Dave the way they loved Mitchell. Which is more than a little strange, no? Reese can tell just by looking at the girl that something had been going on between her and Mitchell for a long time and that’s exactly what the girl said. She was a runaway and Mitchell looked out for her in exchange for some sexual favors. It had gone on so long she actually loved him. Sick, yes, but it also means she really didn’t murder him.
According to her, Dave wouldn’t have killed him either. That really only leaves one person, Zack. I bet you can guess why, too. Only, they still don’t have a body to prove this guy is dead. But if you were going to hide a body in a mall and you didn’t have much time, what would you do? Hide him in a store, of course. A quick call back to headquarters told Crews and Reese the entire mall had been covered by cadaver dogs except for the pet store. Seems there were too many odors for the dogs to distinguish. And guess where they find the body. Yup. The owner certainly didn’t know the guy was there and the only other person with a key was….Dave. So now we know who hid him and I think we all know who killed him.
It’s a good thing the kids were finally turned over to Family Services so Crews and Reese know where to find them. Only, they jumped out of the car at a stop light. The little girl did keep saying she just wanted to go home to Reese. Which means we’re back to the mall. They find the kids in their makeshift home and when Crews talks to Zack, he finds out he did indeed push him off the balcony to stop him from molesting his sister. He really shouldn’t have to go to jail for that, not after everything they’ve gone through. Crews agrees because he lets the kid go. In the meantime, Tidwell has actually tracked down their aunt, who has been searching for them, and she wants to take them in. All’s happy in lala land. Except for Tidwell and Reese. She’s pissed he called Family Services and walks out on their dinner. Boo.
As far as Crews ongoing mystery of who set him up. He found out that one of the former cops from the picture is now an extremely wealthy real estate mogul. How do you start that kind of business on a cop’s pay? Exactly. He also meets with an FBI agent he knows who told him to back off of the guy. But can this guy be trusted? After all, he chews fruit punch gum. (I have to admit I have no idea if that’s pertinent but it seemed like it was).We’ll have to see how that all plays out but it seems Crews is on the right track.
P.S. – Crews and his ex totally had sex, multiple times, at a hotel they used to meet at when they started dating years ago. Don’t be too hard on her. I mean, she’s married but it’s not like she ever stopped loving Crews.