‘Motive’ Review: ‘The Glass House’

It’s a family affair on this week’s ‘Motive’, in which Angie and Vega investigate the murder of a paranoid parent while Angie continues to dig deeper into Neville Montgomery’s business.

When Peter Glass gets chopped into pieces, the team is on the hunt for Wayne Hobbs – former Unforgettable star Dylan Walsh, on the other side of the story this time – a contractor with a big secret.

You can easily sympathize with Wayne, as Peter (John Cassini) is portrayed as an overbearing jerk who’s so paranoid that he won’t let his daughter have a cell phone, yet gets angry when she doesn’t call to say that she’ll be home late. His wife won’t stand up to him, his co-workers don’t like him and his daughter Sophie (Jodelle Ferland, Dark Matter) is horrified that he ran a background check on her now ex-boyfriend.

In contrast, Peter seems to be sweet and genuinely interested in the family. That’s because he’s convinced that Sophie is his own daughter Cassidy, who was abducted when she was three and whom he’s spent years obsessively searching for.

When Sophie escapes from home with Wayne, she quickly realizes that he’s not going to let her go. The murder case turns into an abduction case that ends with a hostage situation at the local planetarium. It comes out that Peter and his wife snatched Cassidy, who is tearfully reunited with her birth mother after Wayne surrenders.

It’s an interesting story with the twist that the best episodes of Motive usually throw in, and there are a number of entertaining moments, like Lucas oblivious to the fact that he’s being hit on by the neighbor until Cross spells it out for him. All the guest stars fill their parts well and it all comes together to make for a solid 42 minutes.

Kristin Lehman shows why she’s the lead of this series when Angie tries to talk Wayne down, able to hold his attention and that of the audience simultaneously. It’s also still a relief to see Warren Christie out from behind the desk, and nice to have a scene in which Cross and Boyd address the fact that Cross wants to be back in the field.

Most importantly Angie and Vega (Louis Ferreira) are repairing their relationship, even as Angie shows Vega a recording of a conversation between Neville Montgomery (Victor Garber) and his lawyer allegedly arranging the murder of Derek Castor. The season-long subplot still hasn’t quite clicked, but Motive really rests less on the plot and more on the chemistry of the actors involved, so it doesn’t matter as much as it might elsewhere. We’re just glad to have the band back together.

One interesting note: starting next week, USA is shifting Motive from Fridays at 10/9c to Sundays at 10/9c. Let’s hope that’s not a reaction to bad ratings, because we have this season and then a whole Season 4 to get to. Especially after already having been chopped from ABC this series deserves an American broadcaster that’ll stick by it, moreso now that we know Season 4 – which is currently airing north of the border on CTV – will be the last. Fingers crossed that Angie and her team won’t get a bad break again.

Motive returns Sunday, May 1 at 10/9c on USA.