The Verdict: An attorney reviews ‘How to Get Away with Murder’ (Ep. 9)

Celebrity, Crime

We’re on to episode nine of my coverage and legal analysis of ABC’s “How to Get Away with Murder.”

SPOILER ALERT! If you are interested in watching the show, I suggest you watch it before reading the following blog post, as I reveal endings and surprises that occur in each episode.

Episode 9 recap

Episode nine was a compilation of all of the flash-forwards we saw throughout the season. The episode starts with Annalise and Sam fighting and hurling insults. Annalise finally admits to having an affair, and Sam admits he didn’t ever love Annalise. Annalise leaves and is seen sitting outside the police station, waiting for Nate.

Meanwhile, back at the house, Sam catches Michaela returning the trophy. He tells her to leave, but she insists on waiting for Annalise. He turns to find Rebecca trying to creep up the stairs. She takes off running, locks herself in the bedroom, and then locks herself in the bathroom with Sam’s computer. She’s trying to download Sam’s cell phone information for Nate. Michaela calls Wes, and Wes, Connor and Laurel show up at the house. Wes convinces Rebecca to come out of the bathroom. They start to leave, but then Sam attacks Rebecca. In the scuffle, Sam falls over the banister and lands on the entryway floor. He isn’t moving.

No one really knows what to do. They just killed a man. While they are sitting there trying to figure out what to do, they turn to see Sam on top of Rebecca, strangling her. They didn’t kill him after all. No one seems able to move or do anything to restrain him and then BAM! Blood spurts onto Rebecca, and as the camera pans around to everyone in the room, it lands on Wes holding the bloody statue.

We are then taken through the students’ disposal of Sam’s body and the close calls they experience, like when Asher comes to the house. Asher is successfully distracted when Bonnie calls him to hook up. He can’t believe his luck! Meanwhile, Annalise is with Nate, telling him about Sam killing Lila. Nate surprisingly initiates a very hot and steamy encounter, but afterwards, Annalise leaves without waking him. She heads home to find it empty and leaves Sam an apologetic voicemail, telling him she loves him and will stick with him.

The next morning, the students are told to report to the office, where Annalise meets them in her bathrobe with no makeup. She tells them the police need to talk to them about her husband. She believes he has fled. The episode ends with one final flashback. Wes is at the house and apologizes to Sam’s body. Shockingly, we hear a voice say, “Don’t be.” Wes looks up, and Annalise is sitting in her desk chair.

Attorney analysis on the law in HTGAWM

The main legal issues that came up in this episode are, not surprisingly, murder, accessory to murder and any other charges that may lie ahead for Annalise and her students.

I don’t think Annalise killed Sam; it was definitely Wes. But I do think that Annalise instructed Wes on how to destroy evidence to get away with the murder and that Wes is carrying out her plans in the flash-forwards we have seen this season.

And speaking of destroying evidence, I can’t help but continue to think there is no way they’re going to pull this off. Cleaning up blood doesn’t mean the police can’t find traces of it. At one point, Connor throws up in a sink; I would guarantee there would be trace evidence of the vomit left in the sink. Unless Annalise is completely free of police suspicion, these things will be found.

But, as we know, spouses are usually the first suspects in disappearance or murder cases. Annalise’s affair with Nate will likely come to light and be seen as a motive. She is playing the grieving wife very well right now, and I’m curious to see how long that will last.

One last question that remains: Why is Annalise protecting Wes? For that answer, we’ll have to wait to find out until the season picks back up in the New Year.

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