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Run: Season 1, Episode 4 (Chase) - Review

Run, Episode 4

Review by Rob Carnevale

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

THINGS really started to heat up in the fourth episode of Run, particularly as the mystery Fiona (Archie Panjabi, pictured) finally proved to be a real fly in the ointment.

With central couple Ruby and Billy (Merritt Wever and Domhnall Gleeson) finally have consummated their relationship, the two then departed Chicago and re-boarded the train that has provided the backdrop for so much of the action.

Sure, there was still a certain awkwardness, particularly as the insecurities inherent in both remain bubbling underneath the surface, just waiting to be uncovered.

But there was a general sense of happiness as they shared a cab back. Alas, happiness was short-lived.

Once back on the train, both got phone calls – or missed messages – heralding imminent personal turmoil. For Ruby, it was over 30 missed calls from her estranged husband. Panic quickly set in and she desperately tried to return the calls, only to keep finding voicemail.

Billy, meanwhile, found Fiona closing in fast. She wants more money. And she’s not afraid to resort to underhand tactics to get it. She also wants to keep Billy for herself. An early flashback to five years previously showed that the ‘run’ text Ruby had sent to Billy on her wedding day had been intercepted and deleted by Fiona.

Having met Ruby in a shop in Chicago last week, and posing as someone else, Fiona engineered another ‘meet’ on the train, playing up the coincidence but also acting as a confidante as Ruby – fraught with worry about those missed calls – decided to seek her advice.

Ruby thought her calls were being deliberately ignored. So, Fiona suggested using her phone to mask her identity. It still went to voicemail. But mission was accomplished as, moments later in the episode, Fiona was able to blackmail Ruby into handing over Billy’s money… otherwise she would send her husband an audio recording of Ruby and Billy having sex. She did, now, have Ruby’s husband’s phone number.

Ruby did as she was asked and handed over the cash. Billy, meanwhile, came clean. Mindful of Fiona’s impending presence, he confessed to Ruby that his decision to walk away from his career had seen him branded a ‘murderer’. But he was desperate to stay with Ruby now that he finally had her… this, despite the suggestion from Fiona that he would eventually tire of her and leave.

So, by episode’s end we had arrived at something of a major conundrum. How stable is Billy? And does he really love Ruby, or is it more the idea of her? Will he become bored?

And what of Ruby’s dilemma? She’s now torn between her family and Billy, mindful of letting down both. She was distraught when she finally got in touch with her husband, to discover that her son had been hospitalised after suffering a fall. But she still didn’t feel she could just up and leave Billy.

And while Fiona had her hands on the money, she was quickly hunted down by Billy and Ruby, prompting her to take the desperate decision to jump from the moving train. It was a breath-taking way to close the episode, leaving Billy and Ruby open-mouthed with horror.

Will they jump too?

The sustained brilliance of Run is the way it cleverly teases the viewer with every passing moment. Hence, answers are replaced with more questions surrounding each character’s motivations. That they remain likeable, despite their inherent flaws, is testament to the charisma of both Gleeson and Wever. They work so well together.

But there’s a darkness too. Both, as previously stated, are damaged people. They’re insecure to the point of being wreckless and, occasionally, selfish. But then were they always meant to be together anyway? And can their decision to run end happily for either of them?

They are compelling questions, which keep Run effortlessly enjoyable and entirely addictive. What’s more, they cram so much into the tight 30-minute running time that they always leave you thirsting for more.

The creators of Fleabag have so far delivered another gem of a TV show.

Read our verdict on the previous episode