‘Mindhunter’ recap: Where each character was at the end of Season 1 and what to expect in the Season 2

‘Mindhunter’ recap: Where each character was at the end of Season 1 and what to expect in the Season 2

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Set in 1977, ‘Mindhunter’ puts the early days of criminal psychology and criminal profiling at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) into focus. FBI agents Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff) and Bill Tench (Holt McCallany) team up with psychologist Wendy Carr (Anna Torv) to burrow deep into criminal minds.

At Quantico, Virginia, the three set out to interview imprisoned serial killers and decipher their reasoning with the hope of applying it to solve ongoing cases. The special agents work hard to answer the burning question: “Are criminals born or are they formed?” Season one ends with a tricky climax, which shows how Holden visits Edmund Kemper and later collapses in the hospital due to an anxiety attack. 

Before season two premieres on Netflix, here’s a recap of each character, where they were at the end of season one and where the new plot may take them. 

Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff)

What happened?

Based on the celebrated retired FBI agent and serial killer “whisperer”, John E Douglas, Ford breaks stereotypes at the FBI with his interviewing skills. He blurs the line between serial offenders and sticks to his ground despite being reprimanded. It is difficult to ignore that despite his “low-key sociopath” traits, he is the one making the most progress.

What to expect

As the cases get more grueling, will he be able to handle all the pressure? Season two will also shed light on his complex connection with Ed Kemper. Moreover, how will he set boundaries with criminals and streamline his personal relationships?

A still from ‘Mindhunter’


Bill Tench (Holt McCallany)

What happened?

Bill Tench gets its inspiration from Douglas’s partner Robert Ressler. In episode two, he convinces the FBI to let them interview Edmund Kemper with his winning line: “How do we get ahead of crazy if we don’t know how crazy thinks?” Bill comes off as a highly observant and methodical investigator with a no-nonsense attitude. However, he too has personal life conflicts that need to be addressed.

What to expect

Tench’s relationship with the serial killers he interviewed should also come into the picture in the upcoming seasons. As the agents explore having a “missing father” as a major childhood issue for serial killers, it could also transpire in his personal life. Hopefully, the new season will address the problem and Tench may be able to take some time off for his family or perhaps, see his son enter the dark side.

A still from ‘Mindhunter’ season two. (Netflix)


Dr. Wendy Carr (Anna Torv)

What happened?

Wendy’s support for Holden and Bill is a great boost. Thanks to her, they manage to get a large sum of grant money for their research. In many ways, Torv’s character makes a major breakthrough — not only as a strong-headed woman in a man’s world but also as a homosexual woman who embraces her sexual freedom.

What to expect?

In the upcoming season, it will be interesting to see whether Wendy stands by Holden’s approach of conducting interviews or distances herself. Moreover, will she be back with her lesbian partner or find someone else. Another important facet of season two might be the mystery of missing cat.

Anna Torv as Dr. Wendy Carr in ‘Mindhunter’. (IMDb)


Edmund Kemper (Cameron Britton)

What happened?

With just the right gestures and hollow look, Ed Kemper comes across as a witty and intelligent man, one that neither Ford nor the viewers had imagined. The serial killer opens up to the FBI agents like no one else did and actually helped them with a couple of cases. No wonder Ford is impressed with his antics!

What to expect?

In the trailer, Ed Kemper is back. He advises the two: “One more thing, Manson is small, like, really small — try not to stare.” Moreover, what is the connection between him and Agent Ford? Will he attempt to strangle him again?

Cameron Britton as Edmund Kemper, a serial killer interviewed by Ford and Tench in ‘Mindhunter’. (Twitter)


Debbie Mitford (Hannah Gross)

What happened?

Debbie comes into Holden’s life when they meet at a bar. A smart psychology student, she is good at listening to his stories and helps him delve deeper into human minds with her concepts. However, she seems to be quite uninterested in the latter half and the two break up by the end of season one.

What to expect?

With Holden’s formal suits and extra-indulgence in the lives of serial killers, Debbie does have her set of problems in the relationship. Will they get back together or it is over for the two? “Then there is still time,” as principal Roger Wade’s wife warns her in a scene from the show.

Debbie Mitford in a still from ‘Mindhunter’. (IMDb)


ADT Serviceman

What happened?

Throughout the 10 episodes, a mystery man (ADT Serviceman) was seen and his character seems to be etched around serial killer Dennis Lynn Rader. In his many letters to the media, Rader gave himself the name BTK Killer, which stands for “bind, torture and kill.”

What to expect

The final shot features Rader and it is a huge clue that he will be seen in a pivotal part in season two. In fact, if you remember clearly, the first episode saw Bill and Holden come across knotted bodies in a case but they couldn’t take it up due to certain reasons. Will Holden figure out Rader’s mind before he goes on to commit the heinous crimes? 

Who is the ADT serviceman in ‘Mindhunter’? (IMDb)


There is also much suspense around a few other characters’ lives. Will Unit Chief Shepard be less strict and more understanding now? What will happen to principal Roger Wade who was let off due to Holden? Will Nancy Tench finally get the support from her husband for their son? And is newly hired Gregg Smith right for the high-profile mission? As season two premieres on August 16, it will hopefully tie up all the loose ends from season one. 

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