Stalker (TV series)
|Created by||Kevin Williamson|
|Country of origin||United States|
|No. of seasons||1|
|No. of episodes||20 (list of episodes)|
|Running time||42 minutes|
|Distributor||Warner Bros. Television Distribution|
|Picture format||16:9 HDTV|
|Original release||October 1, 2014– May 18, 2015|
Stalker is an American police procedural drama television series about victims of stalking and the detectives of the LAPD's Threat Assessment Unit who investigate the crimes. The show ran for one season from October 1, 2014 to May 18, 2015, airing on Wednesdays for seventeen episodes and Monday for the last three on CBS as part of the 2014–15 fall television season.
On May 8, 2015, CBS canceled Stalker after one season, thereby ending the show on an unresolved cliffhanger.
Det. Jack Larsen (Dylan McDermott) is a recent transfer to the TAU from New York City’s homicide division, whose confidence, strong personality, and questionable behavior has landed him in trouble before—but whose past behavior may also prove valuable in his new job. His boss, Lt. Beth Davis (Maggie Q), is strong, focused and an expert in the field, driven by her traumatic personal experience as a victim. With the rest of their team, young but eager Det. Ben Caldwell (Victor Rasuk) and deceptively smart Det. Janice Lawrence (Mariana Klaveno), Larsen and Davis assess the threat level of cases and respond before the stalking and intimidation spirals out of control, all while trying to keep their personal obsessions at bay.
Cast and characters
- Dylan McDermott as Jack Larsen: an LAPD Detective II. He recently transferred to the Threat Assessment Unit from the NYPD Homicide Division in pursuit of his son. Hired because of his friends upstairs, Larsen had to earn the respect of Davis and her team, who thought there were more deserving candidates for his position.
- Maggie Q as Beth Davis: a victim of stalking. Born Michelle Webber, Davis changed her name following the stalking-related death of her family. She's now a Lieutenant II in the LAPD and the officer-in-charge of the Threat Assessment Unit (TAU). Introverted, Davis considers her team to be her surrogate family; and, when she's not investigating stalking cases, she's lecturing at university campuses on the subject.
- Mariana Klaveno as Janice Lawrence: a Detective II who is second-in-command of Davis' unit.
- Victor Rasuk as Ben Caldwell: a Detective I, and a rookie member of the TAU.
- Elisabeth Röhm as Amanda Taylor: the mother of Jack's son. Lovers in New York, Amanda left Jack to start a new life at the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office. She currently serves as the TAU's Deputy D.A.
- Tara Summers as Tracy Wright, Beth's best friend
- Erik Stocklin as Perry Whitley/"Brody"
- Gabriel Bateman as Ethan Taylor, Amanda and Jack's son
- Warren Kole as Trent Wilkes, LAPD detective and Amanda's former boyfriend
- Chelsea Harris as Belle, the TAU's receptionist and administrative assistant
- Eion Bailey as Ray, Beth's stalker who once set a fire that killed her family
- Mira Sorvino as Vicki Gregg, an FBI agent who replaces Beth as the interim commander of the TAU
Although the series had mostly negative reviews from critics, it has been well received by viewers. The premiere of the first season drew 9.05 million viewers. The series was ordered for a full first season after the first episodes managed to win top ratings in the series' Wednesday time slot.
Stalker received negative reviews from critics at the aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes. There, critic comments include, "[it is] chock full of perverted subjects and ugly storylines, making it hard to watch even for those who like to watch". Maureen Ryan of The Huffington Post called it "exploitative, misogynist trash". At Metacritic, the series premiere garnered a score of 17 out of 100, based on the opinions of 24 critics. The show also received negative reviews from Variety, USA Today, and The A.V. Club.
Stalker is rated R18 in New Zealand for sadistic violence, drug use, offensive language and sex scenes
Awards and nominations
|Time slot (ET)||No. of
|Wednesday 10:00 p.m.
(October 1, 2014 - February 18, 2015)
Monday 9:00 p.m.
(April 27, 2015 - May 18, 2015)
|20||October 1, 2014||9.05||May 18, 2015||6.79||2014–15||#43||2.3||10.13|
|No.||Title||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||U.S. viewers
|1||"Pilot"||Liz Friedlander||Kevin Williamson||October 1, 2014||9.05|
|Detective Jack Larsen, relocating from New York, arrives for his first day on the job working for Lieutenant Beth Davis with the elite TAU team in Los Angeles. The team tackles two cases: a stalker who has an unusual affinity for setting his victims on fire, and a college student who is charged with assault but later says he was defending himself from harassment by Perry, a former roommate he had thrown out. Elsewhere, Jack himself spies on a mother and her child, later revealed to be his ex-girlfriend, Deputy D.A. Amanda Taylor, and their son Ethan Taylor. In the end, Perry follows Beth home.|
|2||"Whatever Happened to Baby James?"||Liz Friedlander||Sanford Golden & Karen Wyscarver||October 8, 2014||8.17|
|Hannah (Sammi Hanratty) is babysitting her 7-year-old brother, Thomas, and appears to be the victim of a stalker. Early evidence leads the team to a man named Barnes, who is a registered sex offender. While Barnes has several photos of Hannah, it later becomes clear that he did nothing more. The TAU acts on further clues that lead them to the theory that Thomas was the intended target and not Hannah. They find a neighboring woman who lost a son about Thomas' age. Perry returns to confront Beth, who punched him in a parking lot in the previous episode. Janice invites Jack out for drinks to celebrate the collar in the Thomas case, but he politely refuses. Near the end of the episode, Amanda gives Jack a stern warning to leave L.A. within two weeks or she will reveal a damaging secret from his past. Perry is shown to have followed Beth and makes contact with a friend of hers.|
|3||"Manhunt"||Bronwen Hughes||Brett Mahoney||October 15, 2014||7.87|
|Jack wonders aloud why Beth seems to hate him. Cara, a bride-to-be, is just about to tie the knot with her lesbian partner when she is shot by a sniper. Cara's ex-husband Paul (Preston Jones) is immediately suspected, as he showed up at the ceremony two hours earlier and didn't take kindly to being dumped for a woman. But things take a twist when the team finds that Cara's father Jimmy (Louis Herthum), an L.A. cop, has enemies—including a special forces vet named Silas Martin (Michael Irby) whom Jimmy fired for being unstable. At the end of the episode, Jack learns he only got the TAU job because his former captain in New York was owed a favor by the L.A. captain, Trent, who is Beth's boss. Beth says there were 372 applicants and Jack wasn't even in the top 20, but she acknowledges, "you're lucky you don't suck". Amanda reminds Jack that the clock is ticking on his two-week timeline to leave L.A. Jack later spies on Amanda and Ethan again, and sees that Trent is Amanda's boyfriend.|
|4||"Phobia"||Roxann Dawson||Heather Zuhlke||October 22, 2014||7.37|
|The TAU team tackles the case of a stalker who plays on the phobias of various women. Upon further investigation, Jack offers a theory that the suspect wants to terrorize his victims, which is a turn-on, rather than kill them. This leads them to dating sites that connect the victims, and a past rape case in which the suspect, Chris Powell (David Chisum), was able to escape conviction. The rape victim reveals she moved to a top floor of a high-rise building because Powell has a fear of heights. After he and Beth locate the suspect in an abandoned office building, Jack uses Powell's fear to get him to reveal the location of his current victim. Elsewhere, Beth's friend Tracy talks about a much younger man that she is hooking up with, who is later revealed to be Perry. Perry gets Tracy to reveal some information about Beth, which he then uses to discover that "Beth Davis" did not exist until she enrolled in the police academy. It is also revealed that Perry has drawn several gruesome sketches of Beth and himself, including one in which he is choking her on a bed. At the end of the episode, Jack hooks up with Janice at his home, but not until he quickly tears his photos of Amanda and Ethan off the wall.|
|5||"The Haunting"||Brad Turner||Kevin Williamson||October 29, 2014||7.36|
|A college sophomore is stalked in a costume shop by a clown that is suspected to be her obsessive ex-boyfriend. Ben finds evidence online that it was the ex-boyfriend's roommate, acting on his behalf. The girl and her roommate rent a house that is supposedly haunted, after a woman named Amy hung herself in the basement and her husband, Greg, committed suicide upon finding her. When the girl is stalked again at the house, her ex and his roommate have airtight alibis. Jack finds evidence in the basement, pointing the TAU team toward a professor of Paranormal and Occult studies at the college, but the professor winds up dead when the girls throw a Halloween party at the house. Ben and Janice research the house's former owners, and call Jack to tell him the legend is only half true. Amy committed suicide, but there is no record of Greg's death. Jack discovers a hidden room in the basement, and is attacked by Greg. Greg is quickly shot and neutralized by Beth. Elsewhere, Perry learns that Beth's real name is Michelle Webber. He reads an article that says Michelle had lost her family (father, mother, sister and family dog) in a house fire and she was the only survivor. A masked Perry later follows Beth around at the Halloween party, and she discovers it's him. He calls her Michelle in a low voice. At home, Beth calls a psychiatric institution, and confirms that a certain patient number 5679 is still confined there and asks if he'd had any visitors. Amanda gives Jack a final warning to leave L.A., and their heated conversation is witnessed by Janice. When Jack follows Amanda and Ethan during Halloween night, he makes contact with Ethan by helping him.|
|6||"Love is a Battlefield"||Omar Madha||Dewayne Jones||November 5, 2014||7.34|
|The home of Andrea Brown (Jessica Tuck) is invaded during a dinner party, though the culprit disappears before being seen. The home has been vandalized with graffiti about greed and evil. Andrea, the chair of an arts foundation, has a restraining order against her ex-husband, Kenneth (Alex Carter). Detective Janice Lawrence is her case manager. They confront Kenneth in his new home with his new girlfriend, Melissa (Caity Lotz). The two insist it is they who are being harassed by Andrea. Next, Andrea returns home and opens a package addressed to her. It contains the dead body of her dog with a passage from the Bible about greed. Because of the Bible passage, the TAU team considers Melissa a suspect due to her father being a pastor. Andrea is then brutally attacked in a parking garage. Later at a charity event, Jack notes the font on some posters is the same as that used in the graffiti. The team then considers the artist (Michael Roark) a suspect. The artist has been sleeping with Andrea and says Andrea paid him to attack her. After the interview, Andrea's story begins to unravel. Meanwhile, Ethan bumps into Jack while Jack is watching him leave for school. Amanda confronts Jack and insists his time is up. She mentions an incident in New York in which Jack slept with a witness, which she will report to Beth. Jack says if she does, Amanda will also be exposed for wrongdoing because she knew about the incident and did nothing. Jack tries to preempt any action by coming clean with Beth, who simply tells Jack to "fix it". He later meets Amanda and pleads for a second chance to stay in L.A., while promising to stay away from Ethan.|
|7||"Fanatic"||Kevin Bray||Tamara Jaron||November 12, 2014||7.01|
|Actress Nina Pressly (AnnaLynne McCord) is a popular star of a show called Savage Shore. While she is home, her home is invaded; music plays, candles burn, a dinner has been prepared and flower petals are spread on the bed, but she does not get a good look at the invader. She has had four stalkers in the past three years. The team first investigates Heather Miller (Bethany Orr), a delusional, potentially violent stalker who had been arrested in the past. But she does not appear to fit the profile of the crime scene. They also investigate paparazzo Edward Gaines (Scott Michael Campbell), who has a knack for knowing exactly where Nina will be. Gaines reveals he has an inside informant, which turns out to be Nina's sister and assistant, Emily (Heather Matarazzo). When Nina learns of this betrayal, she and Emily have a bad fight and Nina throws her out of the house. Outside the house, Emily is attacked in a manner reminiscent of a scene from Savage Shore. The team finds out the attacker is Robbie (Brendan Sexton III), who has a delusional disorder but has stopped taking his anti-psychotic medication. Robbie's domineering and overprotective mother, Nancy (Molly Hagan), is revealed to have acted on her son's behalf. Meanwhile, Tracy's boyfriend "Brody" (Perry) steals Beth's personal information from Tracy's phone. He later breaks into Beth's home and makes himself comfortable while she is not there. Beth receives a letter with a copy of the article on the fire and she thinks it is from "Ray" (patient number 5679), but the institution says there is no way the patient could have sent it.|
|8||"Skin"||Fred Toye||Corey Evett & Matt Partney||November 19, 2014||7.98|
|When menacing motorcyclists drive by his house during a neighborhood cook out, Mark Evans Richards (Marc Blucas) hurries his family indoors. Later that night while he is showering, his wife Christina (Christina Vidal) yells. He rushes outside to see a fire in the front yard. Without his shirt on, his tattoos reveal his Nazi sympathizing, white supremacist past to his neighbors. When the team questions him about his past to assess the threat to his family, he explains that he changed his ways after falling in love with his Hispanic wife. Later Mark receives a phone call in which his family is threatened. He tells the team he recognizes the voice as Chad Hewitt (Darri Ingolfsson), a former protege who currently runs a white separatist group that he claims is a non-violent political organization. After the team questions Chad in his home, a bomb nearly kills Mark's son in his backyard. Mark assaults Chad in revenge, but after the TAU team questions Chad, they realize he did not plant the bomb. Attention turns to Mark's neighbors, one of whom is an Asian American who was the victim of a racially-motivated hate crime in the past. Elsewhere, Trent correctly deduces that Ethan is Jack's son, and asks Amanda why she won't let Jack have contact with him. Amanda says, "it's complicated," while Ethan listens from behind a wall. In the last scene, Beth receives a package containing a Teddy bear. It is identical to an old one she has in storage that was damaged in the house fire.|
|9||"Crazy for You"||Liz Friedlander||Dawn DeNoon||November 26, 2014||8.26|
|Psychiatrist Adam Lewis (Jay Karnes) hears an intruder in his office, and later finds a gift box with a pair of women's panties. He consults the TAU and tells them of a woman suffering from auditory hallucinations named Claudia Burke (Madeline Brewer) who has stalked him in the past, even following him and his wife (Kate Norby) on a trip to Phoenix. Jack and Janice go to Claudia's home and find her attempting suicide in her garage. Claudia's alibi for the night of Lewis' office break-in checks out, leading the team to see if any other of the doctor's patients had issues with him. Ben finds negative reviews on a web site, and Lewis leads them to a former patient named Shelly Walker (Vedette Lim), an alcoholic whose posts blame Lewis for ruining her marriage. Jack and Ben go to Shelly's home, but find only her husband, Jason Walker (Wes Ramsey) there. Jason confirms Shelly ran out on him when he became sober and she could not. But an interview with Shelly reveals it is Jason who is still drinking, while she is the sober one. The team goes back to the house, and finds liquor bottles along with proof that Jason wrote the damning web reviews of Lewis, posing as his wife. They race to Lewis's office and find Jason there setting up what would appear to be the doctor's suicide. Elsewhere, Beth confronts Tracy and asks if it's possible anyone could have gotten information from her phone, but Tracy insists that Beth's personal information is password protected. At the end of the episode, Beth tails Tracy and sees her meet with Perry in a bar. Beth then breaks into Perry's apartment and sees his gruesome drawings.|
|10||"A Cry for Help"||Jeff T. Thomas||Heather Zuhlke||December 3, 2014||7.47|
|Henry White (Jeff Howard) is a bus driver who is beaten up at night in the bus yard. Henry reports to the threat assessment unit that he suspects Nora Garcia, a woman with whom he had a one night stand. But Nora has a solid alibi. Shortly after, Henry is brutally attacked by a woman, not Nora, in his home; his hands are nailed to the head of his bed. Later, Sophia (Chasty Ballesteros) is attacked by a client, "Danielle", after hours in her hair salon. The TAU makes a connection and identifies "Danielle" as Cory James (A Leslie Kies). Cory had been reported missing by her mother (Jennifer Parsons). Cory's mother explains her daughter changed drastically after the drug-overdose death of her best friend. The TAU find a yearbook in Cory's room with pictures of Henry and Sophia blacked out. From this connection, Cory's motivation for the attacks is revealed: Her friend and her were raped in highschool. Meanwhile, Beth explains to Tracy she has identified boyfriend "Brody" as Perry Whitley, a stalker she had previously arrested, and tells her about the photos found in Perry's apartment. The TAU team ask Beth what is wrong, but she rebuffs their offers for help until after Perry confronts her in the parking lot, telling her he knows about her old life, especially about Ray burning down the house and killing her family.|
|11||"Tell All"||David Rodriguez||Sean Hennen||December 10, 2014||7.25|
|Stella (Laurie Fortier), the ex-wife of professional hockey player Tom Wade (Jason Wiles) is stalked in her home. Suspicion falls on Tom, but he appears to have a solid alibi. The TAU team finds that Stella has written a tell-all book that has yet to be published, and they start investigating people who were shown in a negative light in the book. But when a few of these people wind up missing, they learn the publisher has been leaking drafts of the book to create a pre-release "buzz". The team finds that the missing people have disappeared in order of the book's chapters. When the next victim that disappears is out of order, Ben deduces that the real suspect has an earlier draft of the book, leading the team via a ghostwriter back to Tom. Elsewhere, Beth finally asks Janice to help her, and reveals the issues with Perry. Beth says Perry is very intelligent, and has not left behind clues that can get him arrested. So Janice provokes Perry until he explodes, after which he is arrested for attacking an officer. Ethan approaches Jack in the street, and Jack then goes to Amanda with suspicions that Ethan knows who he is. Amanda remembers the conversation with Trent, and realizes that Ethan must have overheard. She later lets Jack come over and spend some time with Ethan.|
|12||"Secrets and Lies"||David Straiton||Sanford Golden & Karen Wyscarver||January 14, 2015||7.87|
|The office of Mayor Will Hayes (Brett Cullen) receives a threatening package in the form of a scary clown. The threat assessment unit looks into previous threats, Alice (Angela Gulner)—an escort he has an association with, and Drew (Raphael Sbarge)—a possessive client of Alice. Given the mayor's relationship with the escort they also question his wife Elaine (Andrea Roth) and son Craig (Benjamin Papac). Meanwhile, Beth asked Amanda for help with Perry. Amanda offered Perry probation. Perry makes bail, then disappears. He is later shown visiting Ray in the mental facility, saying they have a common interest.|
|13||"The News"||Liz Friedlander||Dewayne Jones||January 21, 2015||8.07|
|John Bardo (Kerr Smith) is being stalked. His former stalker, despite being recently released on parole, is deemed not to be the culprit after he violates his parole after attacking John's new girlfriend, Lauren (Erin Daniels). Perry gets Ray released through a specialist's evaluation. John's girlfriend turns out to be a former stalker of Keith (David Julian Hirsh), John's rival at the station. She holds him hostage in the station's dressing room. John eventually disarms her while she is distracted while talking to Keith. Ray calls Beth, telling her she will see him soon. Ben is filled in on Beth's history with Ray as Michelle. The team comes over to Beth's place for a pizza and beer night to keep her company.|
|14||"My Hero"||Kevin Bray||Tamara Jaron||January 28, 2015||8.34|
|Dave Knox (Michael Rady) proposes to Nicole Clark (Phoebe Tonkin) on the pier and she happily accepts but the engagement ring is snatched. At the police, Dave and Nicole report this to the TAU because they thought it might be related to a red truck that seemed to be following them. They also explain neither of their exes took their relationship well. Dave's ex, Stephanie (Ashley Johnson), is not bitter and has moved on with a better boyfriend. Nicole's ex, Mike Harris (Sam Page) is her boss in her lifeguard position at the beach. He agrees he didn't take the break up well, but that he is happy for her. At a night time beach party, Dave leaves to get beer. In a tunnel, a hooded figure throws a lighter onto an accelerant which burns Dave to death. The TAU pursue another lead, the parents of a boy who died at the beach on Nicole's watch. Jaun (Hector Luis Bustamante), the boy's father denies that they would do anything to hurt anyone. Later, it is discovered that the red truck belongs to Isabelle (Andrea Savo), the boy's mother, though she explains away her presence. When it is discovered that Nicole rescued her friend and roommate Zoe Parsons (Nicholle Tom), a new motive emerges. Elsewhere, Amanda invites Jack to a dinner with her and Ethan, causing a break-up with Trent, while Perry and Ray hide out in a motel.|
|15||"Lost and Found"||Rob Seidenglanz||Corey Evett and Matt Partney||February 4, 2015||7.35|
|Baker (Andrew W. Walker), a young and handsome high school coach, receives threatening text messages and is nearly killed under the basketball court's bleachers. Suspecting a student named Jenny Klein (Cole Bernstein) whom he believes is romantically interested in him, he reports this to the TAU. Jenny and her adoptive mother (Lauren Bowles) confirm she has a rocky relationship with a boyfriend Emmet (Peter Coventry Smith), but insist she is not threatening Coach Baker. This brings the team into a morass of high school antics with Jenny's best friend Alexis (Caitlin Carver), Dierdre (Sofia Vassilieva) who is trying to steal Emmet, Tripp (Austin Lyon) the gossip, and Ian (Sterling Beaumon) the instigator. The TAU team is baffled until discovering that Alexis is actually 21 years old and that Jenny's adoptive mom is Alexis' birth mother. Meanwhile, Perry gets to know Ray, and Ray hatches a plan to make contact with Beth.|
|16||"Salvation"||Liz Friedlander||Danny Tolli||February 11, 2015||7.64|
|After being threatened by a man (Craig Gellis) outside her apartment, Isabelle (Sara Paxton) tells the TAU about a boyfriend, Oscar (J. D. Pardo), against whom she has a restraining order. After a threat from a group of people surrounding Isabelle's car, the TAU investigate a "Celestial" cult whose leader is a charismatic man named Abraham (Michael Landes). It turns out Isabelle's friend and neighbor Lucy (Samaire Armstrong) is a member of the cult. Meanwhile, Perry and Ray discuss plans for isolating Beth by removing members of her "family" (the TAU personnel), but Perry wants some ground rules. Ray's first victim is Amanda, as he slams her head against her car.|
|17||"Fun and Games"||Jeff T. Thomas||Kevin Williamson||February 18, 2015||6.74|
|As Amanda recovers in the hospital, Ray kidnaps Tracy, escalating tension between himself and Perry. When the investigator hired by Perry's father tracks Perry to the hotel room hideout, Ray kills him. Meanwhile, Beth is relieved of her command by experienced stalker expert Vicki Gregg (Mira Sorvino), as the team focuses on saving Tracy. Ray leaves a trail of clues for the investigators, hoping to lure Beth to an auto junkyard where he is keeping Tracy. Perry tries to stop Ray and helps Tracy escape, only to have Ray beat him to death. The team finds Tracy alive, but the distraction gives Ray the opportunity he wanted—to attack Beth in her home. After apparently overcoming an officer stationed outside the home, Ray shoots Ben and kidnaps Beth. As the TAU team tries to save Ben's life, Beth is shown waking up in the trunk of a car, next to Perry's dead body.|
|18||"The Woods"||Fred Toye||Sean Hennen||April 27, 2015||5.70|
|While Ben is in critical condition in the hospital, Beth desperately fights for her life after her Ray drags her to a remote cabin in the woods. Agent Gregg tells the TAU that the FBI has taken over the case, given the strong possibility that Ray has taken Beth across state lines, most likely back to Washington. Jack and Janice work on their own, digging into Ray's profile and history to frantically search for clues to their location. After determining that Ray and Beth are in Ojai, California, they defy Agent Gregg and rush out to try and save Beth before it's too late. At the end of the episode, Ben finally wakes up in his hospital bed.|
|19||"Love Hurts"||Hanelle Culpepper||Sanford Golden & Karen Wyscarver||May 11, 2015||6.37|
|Beth faces a tough decision about her future, Vicki Gregg reveals her real reasons for returning to the TAU, and an unrelated incident in a stalking case leads Janice to suspect a serial killer may be on the loose.|
|20||"Love Kills"||Liz Friedlander||Kevin Williamson & Dewayne Jones||May 18, 2015||6.79|
|Beth, Jack, Vicky and the rest of the TAU team continue their search for a serial killer, and Vicky learns some startling information about her ex-husband.|
Stalker has been picked up by several broadcasters outside the United States. The Belgian station Vier airs Stalker as well every Sunday night as a part of their crime night. In South Africa, the series premiered on October 22, 2014, and airs on M-Net Edge on Wednesdays. It premiered in the UK and Ireland on November 10, 2014, on Sky Living and airs on Mondays. In Romania, it airs every Wednesday on Diva. In New Zealand the series premiered on TVNZ on January 12, 2015. The series premiered in Australia on April 12, 2015. The show also airs in France, on TF1. In Japan, Stalker is shown on cable / satellite channel AXN.
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