Big Sky Season 1 Episode 8 Review: The End is Near

Now, what is going on here?

Everything is starting to go off the rails as the body count piles up, and Ronald slips further and further into madness.

And that’s to say nothing of that little reveal toward the end of Big Sky Season 1 Episode 8 which has Merilee (and us) wondering if the Big Rick isn’t as far gone as he’d like us to believe. What an hour!

Ronald has been slowly channeling his inner Norman Bates for a while now. And killing Helen seemed to have unleashed something sinister and dark inside him that was always hovering beneath the surface.

He went from never killing anyone to murdering his mother and a clergyman within a day.

And he kidnapped a child, who was getting closer to him than the police were.

Poor Erik was in way over his head, and of course, in retrospect, it’s easy to say he should have gone right to the police with his suspicions instead of trying to gather the proof himself. But he’s a child, and he thought he was doing the right thing.

He at least had the wherewithal to phone his mom, which helped the police (and Cassie and Jenny) to track him to Ronald so quickly.

Ronald is fully embracing his psycho now, and it’s terrifying. He’s always been unhinged, but there’s been a change as of late. Everything feels more personal now and more desperate. And that tracks, as he’s genuinely on the cusp of losing it all.

His face is plastered on every newspaper and the television and internet, and to be honest, he’s lucky no one has come knocking on his door yet. He and Helen live smack in the middle of nowhere, but Helen had a life outside of the home. People knew her, and thus by proxy, they would surely recognize a distinct face like Ronald’s.

Had the priest gotten his hands on the morning paper, he would have recognized Ronald right away.

It’s still a mystery why Ronald isn’t fleeing the area. He’s killing and doing whatever needs to be done to protect himself when he could be multiple states away at this point and not down the street from a town that wants his head on a stick.

As the walls continue to cave in on him, Ronald has decided to adopt a kill or be killed attitude, and he’s had the upper-hand thus far, but no way can last for much longer. His day of reckoning has to be on its way.


This show is dark, but Erik’s death would push it into a whole other stratosphere.

The one man who was very capable of leading the police to Ronald was Rick, but he’s still a shell of his former self. Or so it seems.

If I did what you say I did, what others are telling me that I did, then I most surely hope to die as well. Maybe I already have.


Cassie and Jenny were not convinced that Rick Legarski was a changed man, and can you blame them? It’s awfully convenient to be on the hook for a litany of abhorrent crimes and then conveniently have no recollection of anything that matters.

But Rick was shot in the head, and the brain is a tricky thing, so the ladies don’t exactly have a ton of options at this point. And they’ve got Penelope popping up everywhere they turn, making sure that she limits not only the information they receive but what Rick says to anyone besides her.

The ladies plan to trigger Rick’s memories wasn’t thought out well, and it didn’t do much. However, it allowed each lady to look into Rick’s eyes and come away with their own conclusion about his diagnosis.

Cassie walked away believing the Rick Legarski she knew, the condescending, ignorant toad she shot in the head, was gone. But Jenny was not nearly as convinced.

And if the look on Merilee’s face is anything to go by, she’s not sure her husband is all the way gone either.

Is it possible Rick is faking it?

Cassie: He’s not there, Jenny. The guy who shot Cody’s gone.
Jenny: He’s not gone. He can’t be. And shall he go free, I’ll kill him. Maybe that would be best.

Let’s look at this logically. If Rick is still in his right mind, then he’s a hell of an actor. His blank stares and calm demeanor are very convincing. He was in a room with Grace and barely batted an eyelash.

And being that close to Cassie and never wavering in his assertion that he’d never seen her before in his life was creepy, and you’d think hard to fake.

But then again, if he IS faking it, he has a firm hold on his emotions, which means he could very well fool a polygraph test if need be. Though, having a handle on your physiological indicators is a lot harder than keeping a straight face.

If he is fooling everyone, that means that even when faced with the choice to help save others from being terrorized by Ronald, including his wife, he still chose himself. Because, of course, he did.

Rick and Ronald are both men who look out for themselves, and we know they’re unwell. But man, it’s still crazy to think about a man like Rick Legarski putting on the uniform every single day and vowing to serve and protect when he’s helping facilitate sex trafficking.

And remaining mum even though his life is conceivably over when he could help save a boy’s life.

You can’t help but feel sorry for Merilee, who was merely a pawn in Ronald’s game and manipulated by a man living a double life. But, thanking Ronald for making you feel alive? It’s not only a sad commentary but also a pretty raw look at just how invisible and emotionally depleted Merilee must have felt in that marriage.

No clue where things go for her from here, but hopefully, she gets as far away from Rick (and Ronald) as she possibly can.

Odds and Ends

  • Is anyone else wanting to spend a little more time with Jerrie every week? She’s such a fascinating character, and we don’t get nearly enough time with her.

  • Denise was helpful this week, and perhaps I was wrong to be so suspicious? Time will tell with that one.

Alright, guys, a lot was going on during this hour, and I’m curious to know how you see things moving forward.

Are you surprised Ronald just keeps on killing?

Do you think Rick is faking it?

Are you also scared of Penelope?

Leave all your thoughts down below and come back to TV Fanatic to watch Big Sky online so you’re all caught up!

Whitney Evans is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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