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Below the Line Recap

Night on the ocean, and diver Dan Murphy prepares to go down off an Pollard Oceanic Center boat. Director Henry Pollard checks on Dan's condition, and Dan assures him that he can handle a night dive. Dan puts on the high-tech diving equipment and then drops down into the ocean. Henry talks to Dan over the intercom and Dan assures him that the equipment is holding up. The director triggers a switch and the PSI in the suit goes up until it finally bursts, shooting Dan's helmet out of the water and into the sky.

Annie Murphy is teaching elementary school, and after class Ray comes in. He explains that she called him and asks how he can help her, and they go for a walk. Annie says that the center won't return her calls and the police don't care. She figures that something happened to Dan and figures that it doesn't involve another woman. Annie notes that it was their son Eric's birthday and Dan wouldn't have missed it no matter what. She confirms that Dan got an apartment near the center because of the commute distance, and the center claims that Dan never started working there and they never heard of him. Ray says that he needs Dan's address and phone number, and describes his favor-bartering system.

Ellen is filming a toothpaste commercial on the beach when Ray visits her. He has her use a boyfriend in the armed forces to set him up with a past. Soon, Ray presents his new credentials as a Navy diver to Henry and claims he has an attitude problem. Henry shows him around the center and presents a model of an underwater power station they're working on. There's a large filtration tank nearby, and Henry shows Ray two of the dolphins they're training as messengers. Karen Marshall comes in from the tank and Henry introduces her to Ray. Henry explains that they're working on motivational factors for the dolphins, and tells Karen that his invitation is always open. Karen quickly excuses herself, and the end-of-day bell goes off. As they go back out, Ray notes all of the security systems and Henry tells him that he's protecting his investment. Henry tells Ray to see Frank Gallagher the next morning to get set up.

Later, Ray goes to Dan's rental home and finds the front door unlocked. Karen is inside packing up her things, and Ray finds a photo of her and Dan together. Ray figures that it didn't work out between Karen and Dan, and claims that Dan is a friend of his. He says that Henry claimed he didn't know Dan, and as he walks past a stereo system, it gives out a burst of static. Ray realizes that his badge is bugged, and Karen says that she last saw Dan five days ago when they made a date and then he broke it. He tells Karen that Dan is married, and Karen laments picking the wrong guys to get involved with. Ray wonders what Henry is hiding, and Karen says that Henry is a snake. Karen explains that she has to put up with Henry to keep her job, and figures something bad happened to Dan. She says that Dan was working on a high-security team and she can't get close to them. Ray hopes Dan gets a chance to tell Karen about Annie and Eric, and helps her pack.

Henry meets with Frank, who goes over Ray's fake credentials and says that he'll run it. The owner tells him to keep Ray busy with the underwater station program.

Ray breaks into the center after hours and uses a skeleton electric card to get past the key card scanner. Security picks up Ray's badge on the surveillance system and monitor his movements, identifying the badge number. The alarms go off and Ray enters the steam tunnels beneath the center. The guards follow him, following the directions from surveillance. According to the monitors, Ray eventually stops in a room. The guards go in and find Ray's badge hanging from a chain.

The next day, the security guards take away a man at the gate, and Ray goes in. The employee tells Frank and Henry that he lost his card the night before, and Henry orders him out. Frank says that he hasn't heard anything back on Ray yet, and Henry figures that Ray was involved with the break-in.

Ray tests a deep-dive suit in a tank. Henry comes in and orders the technicians out, then questions Ray about his Naval resume and turns up the PSI Ray answers correctly and Henry turns down the pressure, congratulating Ray on passing.

That night, Ray meets with Karen on the beach and says that Dan got himself involved in something dangerous. He describes how Henry tortured him and asks what Henry is doing, figuring that Dan got involved in it. Ray points out the tunnels with all of the water pipes, and Karen kisses him. When she talks about how there's more to her than leg and thigh, and Ray kisses her back. Karen admits that if she's going to screw up again, she wants to do it well and kisses Ray.

The next day in the center, Ray secretly drops his badge into a woman's purse while making small talk with her. Once she leaves for the night, the security system shows that Ray's badge is no longer in the building and the guards lock up the place for the night. Ray traces the water pipes and hears liquid running through them. He emerges through a manhole cover and finds himself at a site where workers are pumping oil into tankers.

The next day, Frank tells Henry that according to the national database, Ray is who he says... but he died on Iwo Jima in 1945. Henry wants to blow the rig, and Frank warns that doing so will cover the coastline in oil and kill over a hundred men. Despite Frank's objections, Henry figures that it's us or them and that no will pick them up in the confusion of the explosion.

Ray goes out on a boat with Karen and prepares to dive, tracing the pipes to see where the oil is coming from. Karen is nervous, and Ray assures her that he won't let anything happen to her. She wonders what happens afterward, and Ray refuses to make promises he doesn't know he can keep. Ray dives down to the tap pipe and traces it to where it links up to a pipe running off of an offshore oil rig.

When Ray returns to the ship, he tells Karen what he found out. Henry and Frank step out, guns drawn, and Ray realizes that Karen has betrayed him just like she betrayed Dan. Henry strokes Karen's hair and then sends her inside, and they take Ray back to the Center and put him in a decompression chamber. Ray figures he'll go up in the explosion at the oil rig, and Henry tells him that they have complete telemetry and can increase the pressure inside the chamber. If Ray tries to escape after they raise the pressure, he'll die.

Once Henry and his guards leave, a single technician monitors Ray. Henry goes to the secret dive chamber, gets a suit, and Frank explains the explosive charge. Meanwhile, Ray lowers his heart rate to the point where it appears he's dead. When the technician lowers the pressure so he can go in safely and checks on Ray, Ray revives and knocks the man out. After he leaves, Frank comes in and finds the unconscious technician.

The guards search the center, and Ray evades them and ducks into a room. Karen comes in and tells Ray that he'll never get out, and offers to get Ray out. She says that she's good at her work and it was always clear until Ray made it complicated. Ray isn't impressed but agrees. However, Ray says that he's going out to the rig and stop the explosion, and Karen gives in.

Henry departs with his team, taking the charges with him.

Ray finds a suit and puts it on, then goes after Henry as he and the others plant charges on the rig supports. Ray takes one of them out and shuts down the charge, then attacks another man and pulls out his respirator. The man swims to the surface, and Henry shoots a spear gun at Ray as he defuses the charge. Henry misses, and Ray puts the charge on his air tank. As Henry gets clear of the rig, the charge explodes, killing him.

Karen is leaving the center with her things when Ray approaches her and asks if she's going somewhere. Ray says that he can't let her go because of Danny, and finds it troubling that she wonders why Ray cares when he didn't know Dan. Karen takes Ray's hand, and Ray says that she doesn't get to walk away as the police arrive. When she gets in her car to drive away, Ray reveals that he took the car keys and leaves.

Later, Ray goes to the Murray house and has a meal with Annie. He tells her that a lot of men are alive if hadn't been for Dan, and someone will pick up where Henry left off with the power station. Annie wonders what she's going to say to Eric, and says that she's picked up on Ray looking down when he tells a lie. She asks Ray if Dan was having an affair, and Ray looks straight at her and says that he wasn't. Annie goes over to introduce Eric to Ray, but Ray has already gone and left the power station model for the boy. She hears Ray's car start up and tells Eric that nothing is wrong.

Written by Gadfly on Dec 8, 2019

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