In Season 1 of Yellowjackets, Misty Quigley was the only citizen detective we needed to keep an eye on. True crime-obsessed, Misty proved a friend indeed when her friend in need, Shauna, needed help disposing of the body of her slain lover Adam. Season 2 begins with Misty grilling Shauna in a mock interrogation, just to cover their bases. But could Misty have met her match with a mysterious man online?
On the citizen detective message boards that Misty frequents as “AfricanGrey,” a potential rival has arisen. A user with the handle “PuttingtheSICKinForensics” has been focusing his amateur sleuthing on the missing person’s case of Adam Martin, which could be disastrous for Team Yellowjackets. So, who is this guy?
Let’s chase down the clues each week to uncover this Yellowjackets mystery.
Who is PuttingtheSICKinForensics?
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From the trailers for Season 2, we know Christina Ricci, who plays present-day Misty, shares scenes with fellow ’90s icon Elijah Wood. Plus, the Lord of the Rings star’s sprightly voice is easily identifiable in episode one, “Friends, Romans, Countrymen,” as the voiceover source of fellow online citizen detective PuttingtheSICKinForensics; Wood is also listed as Walter in the show’s credits(Opens in a new tab).
In this first ep, Misty is infuriated to find Adam Martin’s (Peter Gadiot) disappearance has become the focus of PuttingtheSICKinForensics. More worrisome, her fellow sleuthing fan is on the right track, posting a theory that Adam’s disappearance might be blamed on an unknown girlfriend. To save Shauna from suspicion, Misty uses her reputation as a well-reputed citizen detective to malign this theory. But could there be clues within Walter’s initial post?
Amid the tedious telegraph schtick, Walter notes that he’s gotten ahold of Adam’s bank statements, and from the charges has determined the missing man had a new love interest. Of course, he’s onto something. But how did Walter get ahold of Adam’s bank statements? Maybe he’s a savvy hacker. Maybe, like Natalie’s former sponsor, he works at a bank. Maybe he’s pulled a Misty, getting his hands dirty by going through Adam’s trash. By the end of episode 1, we have no way of knowing for sure.
What does episode 2 tell us about Walter?
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In Season 2 episode 2 (“Edible Complex”), Walter makes his first appearance on Yellowjackets while making an intriguing impression on Misty.
It begins with Misty reaching out on the f/BureauofCitizenDetectives message board for help hacking the motel security camera, so she might uncover what happened to Nat. Walter pipes up, offering, “I might have an idea, but only if you stop shitting all over my Adam Martin theories.”
Misty snarls and quickly accuses him of going on “wild goose chases.” But Walter’s not giving up.
Soon, Wood’s familiar voice is drifting through the old folks’ home where Misty works. Amid probing questions about air quality and staff background checks, Walter makes knowing eye contact with Misty. She then finds a note addressed to her in the staff fridge. It appears to be blank, but a flash of a UV light reveals that SICK has found her and is eager to help her in her quest to find Nat. He’s even set up an interview with a potential witness, masquerading as an FBI agent.
Asking if “Agent Quigley” would care to join is just about the most romantic thing Misty might hope for. But this guy is trying to expose her friend for murder. So, their love story has a rocky road ahead.
Shipping potential aside, who is Walter beyond a rival/love interest for Misty? Could there be a clue in Season 1?
Is Walter a friend of Adam’s?
Credit: Michael Courtney/SHOWTIME
Consider this: Misty’s current focus on the message boards is cracking the case of MIA Nat, a friend for which she’d do anything (including hard drugs). If Walter is Misty’s match, as he seems to be, could he be similarly motivated in Adam’s case?
When Adam died, Shauna knew frustratingly little about him. In Season 1 episode 8, “Flight of the Bumblebee,” Shauna confronts Adam over his lies about going to art school at Pratt. From there, Adam proposes a romantic get-to-know-him getaway. “Look, I’ve got this friend with a cabin in the woods in the Poconos,” Adam said, “Let’s go away for the weekend. I’ll be an open book.”
He doesn’t say, “Let’s get a hotel” or “Let’s take a trip.” Adam specifically mentions a friend with a cabin. Presumably, he’s already asked that friend if he could borrow the place for the weekend. And maybe he even floated why: time alone with a new girlfriend.
Could Walter be the friend with a cabin? Could it be that this is actually why he knows Adam had a girlfriend and that she might be the key to finding him? Of course, there was a bigger fear that Shauna had about Adam.
Is Walter a Yellowjackets fanboy?
Credit: Michael Courtney/SHOWTIME
As Season 1 episode 9 (“Doomcoming”) kicks off, Shauna is storming back to Adam’s apartment, armed with a handful of glitter and allegations that he’s the blackmailer who’s been harassing her fellow Yellowjackets. She’s convinced he figured out the code to her safe and stole her missing journals from the wilderness. “The code is the flight number,” she exclaims. “It’s so fucking dumb. Any fanboy could figure that out.”
Yellowjackets fanboys have been mentioned in passing, always disdainfully by the survivors. While Adam is bewildered by these accusations (we later learn Jeff was the blackmailer and borrowed the journals), Shauna discovers that Adam has been hiding a copy of the loathed true crime tell-all Skin in the Game: The Unofficial Story of Flight 2525.
From there, Adam says he googled her after they met. “I saw you were in that plane crash and I was curious,” he insists. She doesn’t believe him. She fears they didn’t meet by a chance car collision but that he’s a stalker obsessed with the tragic girls of 25 years ago. Adam claims he didn’t know her at all before the accident, but he dies before Shauna learns what his deal really is.
Whether or not they met by happenstance, was Adam a Yellowjackets fanboy? The old book might have been bought easily and recently on eBay, but behind it sits a ragged issue of a gossip magazine, which presumably would be trickier to find. Could it be something he scored from a Yellowjackets message board? Or maybe Adam got it from a friend who has an obsession with crime, conspiracies, and cover-ups.
Perhaps Walter had previously owned that trashy true crime book and/or gossip magazine. At the very least, he’d be the right person to turn to for information when Adam started asking questions about Flight 2525.
After all, the Yellowjackets girls have been largely living outside the spotlight, but Walter somehow connected AfricanGrey to Misty Quigley’s name and workplace. Presumably, he also knows Misty is a Flight 2525 survivor, as that would rank far higher on her search results than her job. So, could he have a fanboy ulterior motive in proposing a meetup? Does he suspect Misty is Adam’s secret girlfriend?
Misty’s typically pretty good at sniffing out bullshit. Could her desperate hunger for love blind her when it comes to this cute true crime buff?
What does episode 3 tell us about Walter?
Credit: Kailey Schwerman/SHOWTIME
Finally, Misty and Walter Tattersall (she uncovered his full name) get some quality time together while playing detective aboard his boat. “Nautical life calls to me,” he says, “Plus, I hate bureaucratic red tape. You never know when you might need to leave the country sans passport.”
While that sketchy reply might be a red flag for most of us, Misty is more focused on the interrogation of the witness from the motel from which Nat went missing. Her plan to lead the questioning is scuttled when the witness turns out to be her oafish former classmate Randy Walsh (Jeff Holman). So, she and Walter pull a Cyrano with a slap of good cop/bad cop. But thrilling theatrics aside, what does all this tell us about Misty’s mysterious new ally?
First off, he’s hiding something. Walter admits as much when he and Misty squabble in the head. She declares Randy is hiding something, and Walter counters, “Everybody’s hiding something.” In Misty’s case, she’s hiding the real reason she’s been downvoting his Adam Martin speculations online. When he asks her directly why she’s ruining his “impeccable reputation,” she says she’s a friend of Adam’s mother, and that the missing man is an addict who likely died by misadventure or suicide.
In this exchange, Walter teases that he has “certain skills,” which Misty assumes to mean hacking. But she’s overlooking how Walter is a great liar and master manipulator. She seems impressed when he reveals that the old woman he brought to her workplace wasn’t actually his mother but an elderly acquaintance who was getting evicted. “It was a two-birds, one-nursing-home situation,” he says, adding, “I have the cash.”
Nursing homes aren’t cheap. So, what kind of wealth is Walter working with, and how did he get it? If he’s passively wealthy, maybe he’s prone to taking up odd fixations, like missing person cases…or tracking down the elusive Yellowjackets.
The most tantalizing clue hints at how he might be playing Misty: validating her with compliments. “I jumped at the chance to get out in the field with the incomparable AfricanGrey,” he proclaims when she arrives at his boat, “I’ve been watching you on the boards. Your nose for analyzing evidence is unparalleled. It is an honor to meet you, Misty Quigley.”
When she asks why he went through so much subterfuge to meet her, he responds with a smile, “Maybe I’m just a bored Moriarty looking for his Sherlock.”
Mind you, not a Watson that might aid the master detective, which is how Walter claims to view Misty, but a Moriarty, Sherlock’s main antagonist. He aspires to be the fearsome foe who can potentially outwit her. As sharp as Misty is, we know her reasoning can be clouded by her ravenous hunger for external validation. (Let us never forget that smashed-to-pieces black box!) So, when Walter proposes a road trip to track down the people in purple who might have snatched Natalie, Misty jumps at the chance to rescue her friend. But what will it cost her?
Stay tuned. We’ll update as new eps air.
Yellowjackets Season 2 is streaming on Showtime, with new episodes streaming weekly on Fridays(Opens in a new tab). Episodes also air every Sunday on Showtime at 9 p.m. ET.
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