"Low Winter Sun" Pilot (TV Episode 2013) - Plot Summary Poster

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  • Frank Agnew and Joe Geddes kill Joe's now former partner Brendan McCann. Internal Affairs looks into the department for a corrupt cop. A crew of criminals looks into McCann's disappearance. Frank suspects Joe knows more about the Internal Affairs appearance than he lets on.

  • Detroit police detectives Frank Andrew and Joe Geddes kill fellow policeman Brendan McCann, Geddes' partner, in retaliation for him having killed Frank's girlfriend Katia. They put McCann in his car and dump it into the river. They both show up for work the next morning to find that Lt. Simon Boyd of Internal Affairs is in the squad room investigating Brendan McCann for corruption. McCann's car is soon found but McCann's isn't the only corpse they find in the car. Frank begins to question if Joe has been straight with him. After McCann fails to show up, police steal cocaine from a house and kill the occupant.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Detroit police officer Frank Agnew meets with fellow detective Joe Geddes in the kitchen of an empty restaurant. Joe explains that Brendan McCann, Joe's former partner, had murdered a woman and then allegedly cut off her hands and head. Joe urges Frank to take revenge on Brendan. After downing much of a bottle of liquor, Frank agrees.

    Inside the restaurant they find Brendan passed out drunk. Assuring the manager that they will lock up the place they wake Brendan up and tell him that they're there to take him home. Brendan is initially combative and insists that tomorrow will be a "big day" but eventually calms down. Joe and Frank take him into the kitchen and force Brendan's head into a water filled utility sink, holding him there until he drowns. Afterwards they drive Brendan to an empty lot by the river and put him in his car. Intending to make it look like a suicide, Frank handcuffs Brendan to the car's steering wheel, something that "determined suicides" sometimes do to prevent themselves from backing out. When all is ready they send the car racing into the river where it sinks.

    The next morning at work, Detective Dani Khalil notices that Joe is wearing the same suit as yesterday. Joe informs her that he and Frank had to take Brendan home and that he's "done" with Brendan. Before the work day can get started Internal Affairs detectives Boyd and Walker arrive and have a meeting with Lieutenant George Torrance, the boss of the unit. Torrance quickly emerges and asks his secretary to find Brendan McCann. Frank arrives at work a short time later and is surprised to find IA investigating Brendan. Frank confronts Joe and accuses him of manipulating Frank. Joe claims not to have known of the investigation and urges Frank to remain silent lest they both be implicated.

    Meanwhile petty crook Damon Callis and his friends wait outside a "stash house" for McCann. Damon has been cultivating McCann for months with payoffs. McCann had been supposed to organize a police raid of the stash house, arresting those inside. Afterwards Damon and his friends would swoop in and take the drugs. With McCann missing, Damon decides to go through with the heist himself after learning there is only one person in the house. They successfully force their way inside and recover a large stash of drugs, but Damon kills the guard after the man admits recognizing them. Afterwards Damon meets with his wife Maya, a bar owner, and tells her that the drugs belong to the criminal boss known as "The Old Man". She assures Damon that she will back whatever play he tries to make.

    At the police station, Boyd questions Joe, who says that he and Frank took Brendan home the previous night but that he's unaware of any corrupt activity Brendan may have been involved in. Frank helps Detective Walker take Brendan's computer to an interrogation room where Walker can search it for evidence. Torrance calls for two detectives to go by McCann's home but Boyd tells him not to bother. McCann had surveillance cameras all around his house and Boyd has a DVD containing the last twelve hours of footage.

    Frank reviews the video with Boyd, telling him that it shows him arriving in his car with McCann who then stumbles into his house. Shortly afterward, Joe arrives and then runs over to Frank's car and the two leave. In reality, flashbacks show that Frank had pretended to be McCann and Joe had transferred to the drivers seat of Franks car and driven off. Boyd shows Frank that two hours after Joe leaves "Brendan" gets in his car and drives off. Frank feigns shock but before he can be questioned anymore Walker interrupts them and takes Boyd into the other room. Using the unit's closed circuit TV, Frank monitors the interrogation room as Walker explains to Boyd that someone has done an extremely thorough wipe of Brendan's computer and that there's nothing left to recover.

    Meanwhile, Dani gets a call that the marine unit has fished Brendan's car out of the river. The unit rushes down there, desperate to see if Brendan is inside. As the car is pulled from the water the marine unit informs them that the occupant is handcuffed to the steering wheel. Joe questions whether this means he was murdered, but Boyd suggests that it is evidence of a "determined suicide" just like Frank had suggested. When Frank arrives, Joe privately congratulates him on carrying out the perfect murder. But Frank is angry with Joe. He notes that Brendan could barely turn on his computer, much less carry out a sophisticated data removal. Instead he suggests that Joe did it for his own ends and that Joe manipulated him into killing Frank. Dani sees the two arguing and becomes suspicious.

    Torrance calls Frank in to be the lead detective on Brendan's death. Frank identifies the body as Brendan's. As the detectives walk away from the car speculating about the next of kin, the forensics team open the trunk and discover another body, its head and hands cut off. Frank, believing it to be the body of his dead girlfriend, declines to look at it, saying "I don't think I can see this." The other detectives go over and Joe identifies it as a man's body. Dani asks Frank why he hesitated to view the body but he rebuffs her. Torrance then assigns Frank to head the investigation, telling him that the department can't get caught protecting a cop as crooked as McCann. The episode ends with Frank suspicious of Joe's motive for the killing and Dani suspicious about Frank's odd behavior

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