Who Killed the Husband In 'How to Get Away With Murder'? This Mystery Is Likely More Complex Than It Seems
Like the show or not, you can't claim Shonda Rhimes' new series How to Get Away With Murder isn't staying true to its name. Literally in the first few minutes of last week's premiere episode (SPOILER ALERT) we opened on a group of college students freaking out about covering up a murder — a group who we later find out to be attending Professor Annalise Keating's law course, which is colloquially referred to as the "how to get away with murder class." And that's not all: It isn't until the ending of the episode that we discover who the victim is — Professor Keating's husband, Sam Keating, a psychology professor at the university — but, as the screen went black, we were still left with the burning question of who the actual murderer is. Update: We finally know who killed Sam and it was more obvious than you'd think.
This isn't even the only mystery that HTGAWM presented in its first episode, because it wouldn't be a Shonda Rhimes show without multiple scandals going on within its first hour: We're also introduced to the murder of a college student named Lila who was, coincidentally, a student in Professor Sam Keating's class. Though it seems like the show is pointing toward Sam being the killer, we haven't been given many clues about that case yet — and a Shonda Rhimes show wouldn't present such an obvious outcome, anyway.
But, whether or not Sam killed Lila doesn't help us answer the question of who killed Sam. Much like Lila's case, it would seem that the group of students from Professor Keating's class who are trying to cover up the murder would be way too obvious as the killers — so it seems more likely that someone else did the deed.
Who, then? We're only one episode into the series, but let's take a look at some theories from facts we've already gathered:
Though I don't think Professor Keating is the murderer, it would be one hell of a plot twist: The lead of the show, a respected professor and lawyer, being the murderer of her own husband. Also, it would explain why her students were hiding Sam's body — they're the same group that Professor Keating chose to intern in her law offices, and the murder weapon is a statue that she personally gave student Connor Walsh as a prize for getting some information on a case she was working on.
She does have motive, too: If Sam killed Lila and Professor Keating found out, perhaps he turned on her, and she acted in self-defense. She's also been cheating on him with a police detective (and, possibly in the future, a student), so there's always the possibility of that factoring.
After all: Nothing is out of the realm of possibility. This is a Shonda Rhimes show.
Yes, he's one of the students working on hiding the body, so it seems unlikely that he was the murderer as well. But, he did have possession of the murder weapon before Sam's death, and he's been known to use...less-than-legal methods if they work to his advantage.
There doesn't seem to be motive, though — at least, yet. All I can think of is that Connor perhaps went off the deep end and murdered Sam to prove to Professor Keating that he's capable of, well, getting away with murder. After all, he was acting awfully crazy in the car while the group was getting supplies to dispose of Sam's body, so it's not totally unrealistic.
Of course, this could also have been because he was on his way to dispose of a body, so maybe it's a moot point.
Now, this would be a twist for the ages. Wes Gibbins, introduced as the gullible, determined, idealistic law school newbie turning into a cold, hard killer. Possible? Actually, yes. Though Wes, like Connor, was also included in the group of students who were transporting Sam's body, he's the unlikeliest suspect of all — and I think there may be something in that.
Wes has already demonstrated his ability to think outside of the box: This wasn't more clear than when he came up with a theory for the case that the class was working on alongside Professor Keating on the spot that was not only creative, but crafty as hell. Even Professor Keating was impressed.
Is he a killer right now? Definitely not. But that doesn't mean that Wes couldn't turn into one by the end of the season if given the proper motive.
How insane would it be if Bonnie was the killer, though, really? I don't know about you guys, but personally, I still see Paris Geller of Gilmore Girls when I look at her, and as crazy as Paris was sometimes, she could never be a murderer. But Bonnie? It might actually be possible.
Bonnie is presented as the kinder of Professor Keating's two employees: Frank is headstrong and rough around the edges, but a moment between him and Laurel proved that deep down he does care for what's right. Bonnie, though, didn't get a moment like that; Instead, she got a moment where she practically ran to Sam when he showed up at the law offices for Professor Keating, and she couldn't stop looking at him while he was speaking. Could this, possibly, simply be a case of a scorned lover turned murderer? It would certainly fit with the theme of Shonda Rhimes shows (where, y'know, lovers are often scorned when they engage in illicit affairs), so I could totally see this happening.
Of course, these are only theories — things change in Shonda Rhimes shows at the blink of an eye, so I'm sure we'll see more development with each passing episode. HTGAWM airs on ABC every Thursday at 10 pm.
Images: ABC (4)