In the present, private investigator Kinsey Milhone is trying to process that she’s just shot and killed someone, then jumps back to three weeks earlier, when she was hired by a woman who had just gotten out of jail to find out who had really killed the woman’s husband. Kinsey goes to the cops for information, but they inform her that not only is the woman guilty, but they suspect she also killed another victim and never got caught.
Why Kinsey might be hard to identify with: She’s hard to identify for the same big reason that we…
- Her work is fairly mundane and her attitude toward it is rather bland, even this more-interesting-than-usual murder case. This is all just a job for her, no different from her other small jobs: “I had to go take some photographs of a crack in a sidewalk for an insurance claim” She’s not engaged, so we also find it hard to engage.
- Her terse, hardboiled voice gives her individuality. And she’s got some fun observations: Of the head cop: “He looks like he would smell of Thunderbird and hang out under bridges throwing up on his own shoes.”
- The case has lots of unique details, such as poisoning using oleander.
- What we compliment in others shows our values: She says of the cop: “his powers of concentration are profound and his memory clear and pitiless.”
- After the cops sends her to a side room to read about the case, she returns to his office: “I leaned on the doorframe, waiting. He took his sweet time ambling over.” Good capturing of how people communicate and express conflict just with body language. She sends a message by leaning, he sends one by ambling.
- She’s had to kill someone in the flashforward, and that’s roiled up her placid exterior. “The day before yesterday I killed someone and the fact weighs heavily on my mind… Killing someone feels odd to me and I haven’t quite sorted it through.”
- She has a hardscrabble background: “I’ve lived in trailers most of my life, but lately they’ve been getting too elaborate for my taste, so now I live in one room, a ‘bachelorette.’” She drives a dent-covered ’68 VW.
- She’s just killed someone, and the cops don’t seem to mind very much, so she’s badass.
- She can traverse different worlds, and she’s satisfyingly rebellious: “That’s why you didn’t like being a cop yourself, Kinsey. Working with a leash around your neck.”