Episode 2.19 : 5 Quarts

  • Life
    • Episode Premiere : March 25, 2009
    • Distributor : NBC
    • Genre : Drama
    • Seasons : 2
    • Show Period : 2007 - 2009
    • Production Company: NBC
    • Official Site :

Cast and Crew

The Story

Crews and Agent Bodner meet and decide they're done shooting each other. Crews asks Bodner if he would find out what the actual task force is that Reese is working with, and who is heading it.

Crews and Seever investigate the homicide of Jonah Grant, an assistant coroner killed in the crypt at the L.A. Coroner's Office. Aside from a circular impact wound to the head, Crews notes his paler-than-usual pallor and a marking on his neck. Tom Santos, assistant coroner, says the mark is a shunt used to extract fluids from the body. Santos says from the looks of it, the blow to the head killed him, and then his blood was drained right after.

They talk to Dr. Quo, who, like Crews, wonders why someone took Grant's blood. Because Grant was dead, she says they would have had to pump it out. As she's explaining their budget woes and hiring freeze, Crews finds wax on one of the slabs. Quo says it's from candles on a birthday cake. When asked about cameras, she says they can only have cameras in designated rooms to protect the dead's privacy, adding that she's had to fire people for taking cell phone shots. She says Grant liked the dead more than the living, and that she was sleeping at the time of the murder.

In the crypt, Seever compares different coroners tools against the impact wound on Grant's body and comes up empty. Tidwell enters and immediately becomes queasy at the smell. He has to exit the room to tell them that they're arranging an autopsy through another office. They can't use this coroner's office because all the employees are suspects.

Crews sees court-ordered community service workers doing lawn work and talks to Fiera Schwartz, arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct outside a Goth club. She's not forthcoming to Crews and says she was asleep during the murder. Fiera didn't like Grant because he yelled at her once. She tells Crews that if he finds the guy who killed Grant, thank him for her.

At the office, Tidwell is stressed because he just had to tell his detectives that all cases that went through the coroner may be thrown into doubt. Crews and Seever tell Tidwell that their questioning of coroner employees and the community service workers out on the lawn didn't yield anything. Sine the murder happened pre-dawn, most people were asleep. Crews wonders if Grant was working on a case that someone might have wanted thrown out of court.

Dr. Quo tells them that Grant was working on the case of celebrity chef Errol Brand, who was shot in the back of the head. The autopsy recovered no bullet, even though he was shot with a small caliber weapon. There was no exit wound. Crews wonders if the killer dug it out. Still at the coroner's office, Crews calls Reese to get an update on her FBI assignment. Reese didn't make the cut with the FBI task force and asks if Crews still has room for her in the car. "Right behind the wheel," Crews says. After the call, Crews spots a pack of condoms on the stairs.

At the FBI, Agent Ray mentions that Crews got close to Reese's father who disappeared, then to Rayborn who disappeared. When Reese assures her that Crews trusts her, Ray asks her to get the truth from him. Once again, Ray assures Reese that she's doing the right thing. Seever learns that Brand worked with an investor named Jimmy Ellison, who's also the biggest bookie in the county. At his restaurant, Jimmy, clad in a bloody apron, says he didn't kill Brand and to leave him alone. Crews and Reese say they're here about his coroner. When they ask what he has behind his back, he reveals a huge butcher knife.

Hector, Jimmy's employee, says that since Brand's death, all Jimmy does is drink wine, listen to opera and cut meat in the kitchen. Sometimes, he cries. Crews and Seever ask Jimmy why he's cutting all that meat. Jimmy says he just can't do it like Brand used to. Citing that Brand was shot in the freezer before staggering to the kitchen to die, they ask Jimmy where the bullet is. Harboring a clear hostility toward cops, he kicks them out.

When briefing Tidwell, Crews notices a discrepancy in the photo taken by the police and one in a tabloid. The tabloid shot isn't in the police file and it shows a puddle of clear liquid by Brand's hand that the police photo doesn't have.

They trace the origin of the photo to Kathy White, who confirms it's hers. When asked if she found out about the death via police scanner, Kathy says she did, but has always had a weird ability to know when people are going to die. Crews asks if he's going to die. She says not him, but someone very close to him will die soon. When they look at her original photo, Crews asks why she takes them at ground level. Kathy says it's all where we end up when we're dead. They zoom up to the clear liquid by Brand's hand and wonder what it is.

The chef's hand was swabbed and nothing was found, so they figure the liquid is water. They go back to the kitchen's freezer and re-enact Brand's last steps. Crews reaches for something in a shelf just like Brand had, and notices icicles on the bottom of the shelves. Crews uses a melon to test his theory that Brand impaled himself on one of the icicles. When the icicle easily pierces the melon, they realize that Brand died from a kitchen accident, not murder. The water by Brand's hand was from the melted icicle, which he had pulled out. They tell Jimmy, who sobs over the impaled melon.

At the mansion, Ted and his estranged daughter Anne try again with the video interview. Ted notices her eyes are red and asks if she's been crying. Anne denies it, but under his insistence she blurts out that the baby keeps her awake. Ted is stunned to learn he's a grandfather, and then asks if her husband helps her with the baby. At that, Anne bursts into tears. He learns that her husband left her for a dog walker and becomes more enraged when she says he doesn't want to see her or the baby. When Ted learns the baby's name is Ted, he starts crying as well.

After learning that Santos filed 27 complaints against Grant, they ask him about it. Santos didn't like Grant's practical jokes, putting fingers in his coffee mug, cranial cap saucers, finding his pen in an esophagus. Santos, who has a superiority complex and contempt for the LAPD, says Dr. Quo did nothing because they're all buddies. When asked, Santos says his bone mallet has been missing. They find the bloody mallet in his locker. When confronted with it, Santos denies killing Grant and says if they convict him, 200 murderers he's helped to convict will go free.

Bodner tells Crews that there's no organized crime task force, nor is there current cooperation between the FBI and LAPD. And, there's no record that Reese is there officially. Dr. Quo tells them she didn't think much about Santos' complaints. Crews notices new equipment in the office and asks her how they afforded it if they didn't have the budget. Quo says it was Grant's job. When they search Grant's files, they find no record of any money coming in or out to purchase new equipment. Off a postcard, Crews tests a theory by re-staging the way that Kathy took Brand's death shot.

They look at Kathy's photos and see all are taken at inartistically low angles. Much like a coroner would do it. When they ask Kathy if she bought the photos, at first she denies it until they threaten to look at her financials. She then admits paying Grant to take them for her. When asked where she was, she says she was asleep. And, why would she kill Grant? He needed the money, she needed the photos.

After putting together that the coroner's office must be selling something to pay for the new equipment, they make a surprise visit and find a Goth party in full swing. Also there is Fiera the Goth. Fiera says the coroner's office allowed parties, because the $250 cover earned them a lot of money. Fiera, who makes a cut, says everyone knew about it, even Santos. When told the one rule was no smoking, they ask why candles were allowed. Fiera doesn't know. Meanwhile, Ted pays his own surprise visit to Shane Banks, Anne's straying husband. "I'm the grandpops you didn't want to meet."

Crews and Seever consider the no smoking rule along with Quo's ravenous appetite, and wonder if she's pregnant. Quo admits it's true, and Grant was the father. However, when asked about Kathy, Quo denies taking money from any photographers. Kathy's financials reveal no records of her giving money to Grant, but they learn she has two apartments in that building. They get the key from the manager and find a museum of death inside it. Included in the collection are shunts and five quarts of blood.

Kathy finds them and, knowing she's busted, turns off the lights and locks them inside with her. As they ask her about Grant dumping her for Quo, she plays a game of cat and mouse with them, blinding them with the flash from her camera as they chase her. Angry that Grant chose life over her and death, she killed him and took his blood. She puts her camera on a shelf and sets the timer to trick Crews. When it flashes, Crews looks toward the camera, but Seever sees Kathy attacking and shoots her. Before she dies, Kathy asks Crews to take her picture.

Crews studies his conspiracy wall and tears Reese out of the picture with Rayborn. At the FBI office, Reese has made her decision as well. She tells Agent Ray that she won't spy on Crews for them. If she goes back to the LAPD, it's not for the FBI. Agent Ray says she understands, even appearing impressed by Reese's loyalty. Ray tells her there's an operation in San Diego at the U.S. border and asks if she wants in. Reese accepts. However, when she gets into the van to go to her assignment, it becomes clear that she was fooled. As she sits between two intimidating agents, the van takes her to an unknown location.






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