The Afterparty: Zoe
February 17, 2022 7:10 PM - Season 1, Episode 6 - Subscribe

In a mostly animated episode, the two sides of Zoe speak out.
posted by jenfullmoon (15 comments total)
So what new facts did we learn. Zoe was the one who shot the arrow at Chelsea, and Jennifer 2 was the one sending Chelsea the threatening messages. Also, we finally meet the bear referenced in the opening credits. And there's a hidden panic room, but it's in the living room, so it's unlikely it opened during the party because everyone would have seen it.
posted by Stanczyk at 4:33 AM on February 18, 2022 [1 favorite]

I did find the whole "two-headed Zoe" concept to be interesting. Clearly something you can only do with the animation, at least.
posted by jenfullmoon at 11:09 AM on February 18, 2022 [1 favorite]

I definitely wondered what facts we learned here, as well. When Zoe's story ended with "see? any of us could have done it, or not done it!" I was a little mad, heh. I started feeling like this episode didn't really advance things, but I do feel like I must be wrong and that'll be proven out going forward.
posted by destructive cactus at 12:36 PM on February 18, 2022

Yeah, I'm curious what we'll find was, in retrospect, shown meaningfully in this episode. The crossbow arrow and Jennifer 2 are potentially significant, though obvious. Unsure what to think about the panic room, though — Jennifer 2 is still missing, so presumably that isn't where she was, right?

Starting to get the feeling that Xavier's death was an accident rather than a deliberate thing, especially since the introduction of psychoactive drugs into the equation seems like it could be pretty big. Particularly since, at this point, we probably know that we can essentially write off everything Aniq said in, oh, the second half of his testimony? (Flaming Jell-O shots!)
posted by DoctorFedora at 5:19 PM on February 18, 2022

There's a part of me that's really suspicious of Zoe's interview. She had some really valid reasons to hate Chelsea, but to dismiss the arrow as a mistake when playing with a prop, and blaming Jenn 2 for the texts, I'm not sure I buy it. Jenn 2's absence may be related to blaming her for the texts. She can't confirm or deny that she sent them if she's, I don't know, DEAD. This breezy and goofy telling of events that night feels like an intentional mislead. We can't imagine it's Zoe because she's a victim of Brett and Chelsea's infidelity, but what does that have to do with a motive to kill Xavier? Classic misdirect. And her telling of the helicopter ride was also breezy and fun, but is that true or another misdirect. I don't know, but the more I think about it, the more I have issues with its veracity. It's all just beans to me now.
posted by Stanczyk at 7:14 PM on February 18, 2022

Is Zoe the only one to claim to have seen Jen 2? I think so.
Also crossbows can't be left loaded like a gun (I've never used one so maybe there are fancy new ones, but I doubt it).

Just based on how quick Jen 1 is to notice and interrupt other people's actions, she feels like the most likely perpetrator to me. She is at least going to have an interesting perspective if we get to her turn.

I feel like detective Culp (really? Culp and Butler? Will there be someone named Didit?) will solve it. No reason, other than his knowledge of Xavier trivia.
posted by Acari at 8:06 AM on February 19, 2022 [1 favorite]

Here's someone's theory on whodunit. Read at your own risk.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:26 AM on February 19, 2022

Perhaps the one piece of foreshadowing information to come out of the panic room scene was that the room had its own set of security cameras. I would not be surprised if they recorded the murder and are used in the finale's reveal.
posted by Stanczyk at 10:14 AM on February 19, 2022 [2 favorites]

I just went back and looked at that scene and indeed one of the cameras is pointing at the balcony of Xavier's bedroom. Top right screen.
posted by Stanczyk at 10:17 AM on February 19, 2022 [3 favorites]

That whodunit theory is not convincing me. He doesn't even acknowledge that Jen 1 is a literal demon from the bad place, which is just sloppy.

I also wondered about those extra cameras. Mostly I was hoping that Jen 2 was in there watching everything, but I didn't think about secondary storage.

Is it bad to hope for a Clue ending?
posted by Acari at 1:09 PM on February 19, 2022 [3 favorites]

I'm definitely hoping Xavier walks out at the beginning of the last episode, turns out not to be dead, and narrates his own story (in the style of a Reality TV show). But I'm pretty sure they showed the body.
posted by mmoncur at 1:59 AM on February 20, 2022 [1 favorite]

The animated caricatures were designed by Lindsey Olivares, who was also the character designer for the Mitchells vs the Machines (another a Lord/Miller production). On Twitter she says:
The caricature of the actor is key but it needed to be a caricature of their afterparty character (through Zoe's POV) and not just the actor, or their other roles. I referenced videos from their other performances and the script to infuse them with the right character.
posted by simonw at 1:08 AM on February 21, 2022

By any rational account, Aniq should still be the prime suspect, POV character notwithstanding -- motive, opportunity, and the brains to carry it out. Though I'd like to think he and Zoe had some strangers-on-a-train thing where she did Xavier while he was passed out and he did ... Jennifer 2? Shapiro whom she hated based on some school shenanigans? The best and worst moment in a mystery is when, as Zoe points out, basically anyone could have done it.
posted by chortly at 11:30 PM on February 21, 2022 [1 favorite]

I'm definitely hoping Xavier walks out at the beginning of the last episode, turns out not to be dead, and narrates his own story (in the style of a Reality TV show). But I'm pretty sure they showed the body.

Being dead didn't keep Joe Gillis from telling his version of the story in Sunset Boulevard. And there are certainly enough cameras around the house for a reality-styled episode.
posted by thecaddy at 3:45 PM on February 22, 2022 [1 favorite]

Funny thing happened when I watched this episode.

It's the scene where Zoë and Xavier are talking in his bedroom.
Xavier said "Oh, it's happening!" and Zoë responded "What is?"
Suddenly the screen went blank except for an error message.

I reloaded and everything continued as normal, but for one uncanny moment it really felt like Xavier was warning me about the impending glitch.
posted by What is E. T. short for? at 4:43 PM on April 18, 2022 [3 favorites]

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