‘American Gigolo’ Episode 3: Recap And Ending, Explained – Old Wounds, Fresh Salt

At the end of Episode 2 of “American Gigolo,” Olga Desnain and Guy DuBois are found dead by detective Joan Sunday. Before getting killed, Guy had left a file on Lisa Beck with Julian Kaye. Meanwhile, Michelle Stratton’s son, Colin, has run away with his teacher, Elizabeth Shannonhouse. “American Gigolo” Episode 3 takes a stroll down Julian’s memory lane, exploring his time with Lisa Beck and Michelle Stratton. On the other hand, we have Michelle Stratton grieving for her missing son Colin and desperately trying to find him.


Spoilers Ahead

‘American Gigolo’ Episode 3: Recap Summary

In the past timeline, Olga Desnain and young Julian are in a car when suddenly Olga tells her driver to stop. She then tells Julian to drive the vehicle. He has never driven before. As he gets into the driver’s seat and begins to drive, with Olga’s encouraging words helping him, a smile appears on Julian’s face; the glee in his eyes is the first of many to come his way.


In the present, Julian, Isabelle, and Lorenzo pay their respects to Olga at her funeral. As Julian walks towards his car, he finds Sunday waiting for him. She asks him about his whereabouts the night Olga was killed. Julian answers that he was “walking around alone”. After telling him to answer whenever she calls, Sunday leaves. Julian gets in his car and has probably driven 100 meters or so when Isabelle stops him. She tries to get him into a conversation, but Julian isn’t in the mood. As she starts to walk away, Julian asks her about Lisa Beck. Apparently, both knew her, and it was clear that something bad had happened to her after young Julian brought her to Olga’s villa. However, Julian doesn’t tell Isabelle about the file he has found.

Later on, Julian pays a visit to his school to talk to one of his teachers, Mr. Banks, regarding Lisa Beck. This means that they both went to the same school. He asks Mr. Banks about any information regarding Lisa Beck. This is when it is revealed that Lisa took her own life. As he walks through the corridors filled with kids, he cannot help but think of the time he spent with Lisa, especially at the villa. It seems that he didn’t find much info on her other than what was already known.


Michelle Stratton receives a text from Elizabeth Shannonhouse’s husband, Chris, who wants to meet. At the meeting, he gives Michelle a record of Elizabeth’s latest transactions that shows that she has paid for a motel room. Michelle gives her word to Chris hat she will bring his wife back to him. Meanwhile, in the motel room, Colin looks at a picture of his mother (Michelle) kissing Julian Kaye and tells Elizabeth that he is angry. Clearly, he hates Julian and also his mother, perhaps. This is when Elizabeth tells him to get some food. Sometime after Colin leaves, Elizabeth hears a knock on the door. As she unlocks it, Panish, one of Richard Stratton’s men, forces his way into the room, calling out for Colin. Not finding him, Panish turns to Elizabeth, telling her to call him. Elizabeth straight away denies it and, in the skirmish that follows, dies as a result of a severe head injury. Panish is stupefied as he didn’t intend to kill her. Later, when Colin returns to the room, he finds Elizabeth lying dead. In shock, he immediately leaves the room and starts to run without knowing where to go. He finally breaks into another motel and hides in the pantry.

The next day, Lorenzo brings Julian some special suits so that he can return to work. He tries to convince Julian to join him and Isabelle that night at the villa. When Julian shows no interest at all, Lorenzo plays the do-it-for-Olga card and leaves. After Lorenzo leaves, Julian’s mind swings back and forth between the fateful night of his arrest and Lisa Beck.


Michelle tracks down the motel where Colin and Elizabeth are staying, using the latter’s transaction records. Upon entering the room, she is shaken to the core upon finding the dead body of Elizabeth. She wonders if Colin is responsible for the act. She begins to clean Colin’s things that are strewn all over the room (trying to remove any clues that could lead back to her son). She tells her husband, Richard, all this and wants him to call the police. Panish, who is also present, speaks against it, saying that Colin will become the primary suspect. Although what he says is true, it seems that he is more afraid of the truth coming out, i.e., that he was the one who has killed Elizabeth Shannonhouse.

At the police station, Sunday finds out about Elizabeth Shannonhouse’s death. One of the pieces of evidence recovered from the scene was a photograph of a man, whom she identifies as Julian, kissing an anonymous woman [Michelle]. Police arrive at the motel while its manager is discreetly approached by Panish, who bribes him with money in return for his silence and all the CCTV footage. Panish also meets Chris Channonhouse and bribes him with money as well and warns him against speaking to the police, something that would also bring to light the fact that his wife “was a pedophile.” Panish’s use of the word “was” while addressing Elizabeth might have gone unnoticed by Chris, but we didn’t fail to notice it. And it is clearly understood that both the manager of the motel and Chris Shannonhouse have only one option, i.e., agreement.


‘American Gigolo’ Episode 3 Ending: Is Elizabeth’s Death Another Warrant for Julian Kaye?

When Sunday arrives at the Shannonhouse residence, Richard is away. She shows Michelle the picture that was recovered from the crime scene. Michelle hadn’t noticed it when she was at the motel. At first, she denies knowing the man she is kissing in the picture but then gives in slowly, telling Sunday that the man was a prostitute and she “used him a couple of times.” She denies any involvement with him, although her eyes speak otherwise. Michelle then opens the door, a sign for Sunday to leave. She tells Michelle that she’ll be in touch and leaves.

Back in his rented room, Julian is going through his stuff and comes across a shirt that Michelle had gifted him. He also finds two photos of him kissing Michelle. It seems that he kept a couple of the pics and Michelle kept another couple, both of which now were bringing the two people close to each other in the most bizarre manner. The same night, Julian receives a call from Sunday, who tells him about Elizabeth’s death and the photograph of him with a woman named Michelle Stratton that was recovered from the scene. While he denies knowing Michelle, Sunday tells him that Michelle has revealed how she used Julian “a couple of times.” This hits Julian hard, who then excuses himself to Sunday and disconnects the line. That he has been hurt is visible on his face. He used to love her, and so did she. As it is, they haven’t met for more than 15 years. And for him to now hear from Sunday that Michelle said how she just used him, makes his pain even worse.


Staring at himself in the mirror, Julian Kaye realizes that it is time to let go of his past. He cleans himself up, settles his hair the way he used to 15 years ago, snorts what appears to be cocaine or something of the sort, puts on a new pair of suits and trousers that Lorenzo had brought for him, and sets out in his vintage car. In short, the “American Gigolo” is back. But a couple of eyes are following him too; those of Richard Stratton’s most dangerous man, McGregor.

Another week of waiting is needed before we can find out more about Olga’s death. Furthermore, McGregor’s tracking of Julian proves that Richard knows about Michelle’s relationship with him. That is why he sent his “best man” to keep an eye on him. Or it could also be that McGregor figured it all out on his own, demonstrating how shrewd the guy is. Colin is still in the pantry with nowhere else to go. Michelle spends sleepless nights, firstly due to her son who has gone missing and secondly due to her past with Julian catching up to her. Richard is also worried about his son. With Sunday bent upon Julian and his involvement, although apparently inadvertent, in the recent deaths, Julian will have to protect himself not just from the law but from threats as well. And where does Lisa Beck fit in the middle of all this chaos? “American Gigolo” Episode 4 has a lot to answer for.


See more: ‘American Gigolo’ Episode 2: Recap And Ending, Explained – Julian Kaye Gets a New Life

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Shubhabrata Dutta
Shubhabrata Dutta
Shubhabrata’s greatest regret is the fact that he won’t be able to watch every movie and show ever made. And when he isn’t watching a movie or a show, he is busy thinking about them and how they are made; all while taking care of his hobbies. These include the usual suspects i.e. songs, long walks, books and PC games.

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