This episode had a good, swift pace, some workmanlike investigation (with some solid contributions from Falacci, who other times has come off as loud and confrontational rather than substantive), a nasty, colorful character in the Ukranian's abusive husband, and the makings of a good blackmail premise and clever, premeditating villain motivated by a colorfully described career slide. Unfortunately, characters and plot details were sketchy and undeveloped, and they smacked of empty sensationalism. The episode had no clear, serious point to make about its apparent theme of lonely people. And the regulars acted as if they were just going through the motions.
The story wound through various characters and situations that were interesting for a while. But then it rushed toward the solution, without ever clearly explaining the relationship between the ringleader, the child-like mistress, and the Ukranian young woman, or the exact workings of the blackmail operation, which seemed implausible, haphazard, and ad hoc. The resort to murder was convoluted and made little sense (it took a huge risk simply to create a way to blackmail the writer). All of this undercut the supposedly cool, calculating profile of the ringleader and the understandability and fun of watching the characters in action. And the writer and the mistress ended up being annoyingly drab, simple characters.