The Watchful Eye Season 1 Episode 1 Recap and Review

Mariel Molino and Warren Christie in season 1 (Freeform/Kailey Schwerman)

The Watchful Eye finally aired yesterday with the first two episodes. It’s been a long wait, but from the looks of it, it’s been worth it. Lets take a look at the first episode, titled, Hen in the Fox House, and see how it all played out.

The episode begins at the Greybourne, an upper-class, elite apartment building in New York. From inital inspection, the Greybourne is giving Arconia vibes from Only Murders in the Building. A woman, later revelaed to be Alice Ward, sits alone in her room late at night, she stares at the window before momentarily jumping from the window to her death.

Six months later, Elena Santos arrives at the Greybourne to meet her new employer, Matthew Ward. She introduces herself and the two talk about Jasper Ward, Matthew’s son, and also the son of Alice, the woman who was seen to jump to her death six months earlier. Matthew explains that he is looking for someone to look after Jasper whilst he is working. The two are momentarily interrupted by Tory Ayres, Matthew’s sister-in-law.

She reviews Elena’s CV, and the three begin talking about Elena and her history. Tory is shocked that Elena lacks proper ‘nanny history’, but Elena rebukes this, citing that she has experience and is available for the live-in position given that she is single. Tory is not impressed with Elena and her CV, and cites that they have 10 other interviews that day, and there is no time for Elena to meet Jasper; they’ll be in touch, however, if she is suitable for the position. Tory comes off kind of rude in this moment, and it’s not the first time she’s rude throughout the episode either. I definitely have my doubts about her—there definitely is something off about her and how she conducts herself.

After the interview, Elena returns to the room she is staying in and talks with her boyfriend, Scott. She explains that if she does get the job, she’ll have to be wary of Tory, but that she feels sorry for Jasper given he lost his mother when he was young. The two kind of relate in that instance. Scott tells her that she shouldn’t feel sorry for them, and makes a joke about Matthew simply being able to purchase a new mother for Jasper if he wanted to. Scott tells her that she should focus on finding the Ruby, and that when she does, it will set them up for live. Moments later, Elena recieves a call from Tory telling her that she was successful and has gotten the job.

At this moment, it quickly becomes clear that Elena has ulterior motives for becoming the Ward’s new nanny. She and Scott are seeking a rare ruby that is presumably hidden somewhere throughout the Greybourne or is in the possession of one of the residents. Who could it be?

The following day, Elena arrives at the Greybourne to get settled in. On the way, she meets Mrs. Ivey, the Greybourne’s “resident dictator”, and an extremely wealthy woman who orders that Elena take the freight elevator up to the nanny’s sleeping quarters. It’s kind of ridiculous, but Elena does stand out like a sore thumb at the Greybourne given her social status.

Getting settled in, she meets Elliott Schwartz later that night. Elliott tells her that the Greybourne is a mysterious building, and some have seen freaky things in the basement of the Greybourne, including the ghost of Alistair Greybourne. Elliott also tells Elena of many mysterious deaths that happened at the Greybourne, and that she should be careful when exploring. Oh, Elliott also seems to like smoking marijuana, and is quite a quirky kid. He and Elena hit it off straight away and become sort-of friends in this episode.

The morning after, Elena begins her work as Jasper’s new nanny. She immediately comes to odds with Tory when making Jasper food that morning, with Tory asking how she knew that Jasper doesn’t have a nut allergy; Elena rebukes her, citing that she presumed she would’ve been told first thing if Jasper had any allergies. Moments later, Elena finally meets Jasper for the first time, but finds he is shy and as a result, she has a hard time bonding with him initially. This is short lived, however, and once Elena suggests that they go to the park, Jasper quickly opens up to her and the two go to the park to play. At the park, Elena meets two other nannys, who ask her about her new role and how she likes Matthew. Elena is quickly pulled away, however, when Jasper asks her to play with him. The two girls question whether they “should tell her”, but they eventually decide against it.

Elena returns to the Greybourne later that night with Jasper Ward|Jasper and the two build skyscraper models. Matthew arrives shortly after and asks Jasper to get ready for bed. Matthew and Elena talk about Matthew’s work, including that sometimes he designs schools as well as high-end buildings. The two eventually begin talking about Elena and her education and it becomes clear to Matthew that Elena lied about ever attending Boston College.

Shortly after, Elena asks Tory if she can help out with her dinner and, whilst Tory is initially skeptical about the idea, she agrees to allow Elena to waitress and bartend at the event. At the event, Elena meets Elliott once more and asks him questions about the guests at the party. Particularly, Elena focuses on Mrs. Ivey—who it is revealed has lived in the same apartment her entire life—and Tory’s husband. During the brief conversation between Elena and Mr. Ayres, it becomes clear that he has an alcoholic problem.

Things become tricky for Elena when Matthew arrives at the party and pulls her to one side wishing to talk about her education. He tells her that it is pretty easy nowadays to find out where someone went to college and he knows that she didn’t attend Boston. She tells him that she is sorry that she lied, but the agency only accepts those who went to college. Besides, she got accepted to Boston, just didn’t attend in the end. Matthew tells her that it is fine, just not to lie to him again in the future.

After the party is over, Elena offers to stay behind and tidy up for Tory. But of course, Elena isn’t doing this out of candor, shes seeking the ruby and has suspicions that Tory could, have it. When Tory has gone to bed, Elena begins snooping around for the ruby, but is interrupted by Mr. Ayres. She tells him that he doesn’t want to mess with her, but he doesn’t bite at this remark. He is shortly pulled away by his daughter when she arrives and tells him its time to retire for the night. At this moment, I kind of got the air that Elena isn’t someone to be messed with, upon feeling threatened, she immediately went to grab a pair of scissors, and it seems she isn’t afraid of using violence when she feels threatened or her motives are about to be unearthed.

The following day, Elena meets with Scott and the two talk about the ruby. She tells him that she hasn’t had any luck finding it at the minute, but shows him the blueprints of the Greybourne. He asks when she will be able to get into the catacombs below to look for the ruby, but she tells him that she isn’t sure they should be stealing from such nice people; he simply remarks that they stole it first.

Elena takes Jasper out for the day, but tensions rise between the two when he remarks that he wants to get ice cream and Elena tells him no. This causes him to bolt out into the street into oncoming traffic whilst Elena is busy texting on her phone. Elena is forced to run into the traffic to push Jasper safetly out of the way. Upon finding out about this, Tory immediately tells her that she is fired, but Mrs. Ivey arrives momentarily, sticking up for Elena and remarking that she witnessed the whole thing from her kitchen window.

Elena pays Mrs. Ivey a visit shortly after, bringing her a basket of pastires and other delicacies. Ironically, Mrs. Ivey is diabetic and makes a sarcastic joke; I kind of like her already.

Mrs. Ivey invites her into her apartment and tells her that she knows she isn’t who she says she is, but questions what it is worth to keep that a secret. Elena asks what she wants, and she reveals that she doesn’t believe that her neice fell from the window, but was either mentally or physically pushed. She remarks that people will do despicable things for a fortune and only one person came into an eight-figure sum as a result of her death. Mrs. Ivey wants Elena to be her eyes and ears around the Greybourne, particularly she wishes her to keep her eye on Matthew.

Later that night, Elena decides to explore the basement of the Greybourne. She finds a dusty room with eccentric wallpaper and a painting of Alistair Greybourne, the presumed architect of the building. She also finds a safe laid into the mantlepiece, but has difficulty opening this without the key. When the door shuts behind Elena, she is startled and finds a different way out only to come across the dead body of one of the porters. She calls it in, but the police tell her that it is likely he fell down the stairs.

Overall, the episode was a solid start for The Watchful Eye and I’m definitely enaged enough to carry on with this one. I’ve got a few questions, primarily about who could have the ruby, but also what is in the safe in the basement of the Greybourne? Is it the ruby? Also, if so, who has the key? I’ll definitely be tuning in next week for more!

Don’t forget you can check out our comprehensive resource for everything related to the series over at the The Watchful Eye Wiki.

Written by Luke Rigby

Luke has been writing television and movie recaps for years. He enjoys writing about CW shows in particular and media released on demand rather than on live TV. He is from the UK, so coverage is iffy.

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