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Trigger warning: This story discusses sexual assault and also suicide. It also has spoilers for "Amerideserve to Crime."

When this week"s episode of "Amerihave the right to Crime" finiburned, my jaw dropped to the floor. It was that type of week. With Taylor Blaine back at Thurgood Marshall High School (wbelow his girlfriend Evy also attends), tright here is an added focus on the emerging storylines about that institution pertaining to race and politics, yet the major concentration remains on figuring out what happened at the Captains" Party.

You are watching: American crime season 2 episode 4

And we finally obtain some answers.

Sort of. OK, not really, however we learn some important context.

To explain, let"s go ago to Eric Tanner. The huge reveal this week are the text messages between Taylor and also Eric that proved intent for consensual sex. To be clear, that does not intend that Taylor couldn"t have actually been raped sindicate bereason he planned to sleep/hookup with Eric. What is important about these messperiods is less about what they mean for the dynamic at the party, and even more around the truth that Eric and Taylor are not right.

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Early in the episode, the Leyland also School basketsphere Coach Dan Sullivan confronts his team around them lying to him, sharing the information about the brand-new DNA proof found by police. Eric automatically starts to panic once Coach tells them that the police will certainly be collecting DNA proof from each of them. He continues to be quiet, yet it is clear that Eric is freaking out.

Eric then starts to go down a dangerous spiral. He overhears his parents talking about their incapacity to get a lawyer. He has actually a minute with his brvarious other as soon as he fantasizes around obtaining out of Indianapolis, leaving all the hard stuff behind, and also taking off to Miami for easier times filled through hot girls and also booze. Eric smirks as his brother shares these things, however it is clear that he is likewise confronting his interior denial about his sexuality. He responds bitterly, "I can not." Then, Eric grabs a beer, goes to the bathroom, stares at himself in the mirror, then attempts to overdose on prescription drugs.

To see how Eric discovered himself in front of that mirror, it is necessary to understand also just how he sees himself and his sexuality. He is deeply afrassist, and that fear is largely about loss.

In each conversation between Eric and his brvarious other, his brvarious other expresses envy and also desire to go to the Leyland School. That envy is shown through basketround. "At leastern you have actually basketsphere," his brother says. Eric, but, seems to think that playing basketsphere and being gay are mutually exclusive. And without basketsphere, he sees his brother as the looking glass into the life he would have.

When Coach Sullivan asks Eric why he didn"t reach out for assist, Eric says, "Then everyone would understand I"m gay." He feels ashamed, scared and stuck.

Eric has actually eexceptionally factor to be scared. Being gay in Indiana is challenging, also for fictional personalities. In real life, it"s also tougher. Indiana is a state that lost an estimated $60 million in tourism last year due to the debacle of the Repair of Religious Freedom Act -- a regulation that many witnessed as being a license to discriminate against LGBT civilization. That same state legislature started hearing testimony January 27 on 3 brand-new bills, all of which pro-LGBT proponents say are damaging to their neighborhoods.

I flourished up in Indiana, and also I delayed coming out to my parental fees for months, also though they gave me no indication that they would ever before disapprove me because of my sexuality. They worked tough to stamp out the homophobic language I picked up on the playground from years of playing "smear the queer" with the boys. I came home saying "that"s so gay" and "f-g," not knowledge the definition of those words, and also earning an earful from my father.

I internalized that homophobia to my own detriment in an setting in which my paleas consistently attempted to be welcoming, so I deserve to just imagine what Eric had actually gone via via his homophobia and also misogyny having actually been affirmed throughout his life.


When I created around Eric for Episode 2, I noted that he perdevelops masculinity, and I think this episode just emphasizes that. Eric"s internalized are afraid has made him angry, which we watch as he chokes his brother in a panicked attempt to recoup his phone via the message messeras on them. He appears to have a quick fusage that deserve to be ignited by fear, which I think will be hugely important relocating forward.

We still do not know what happened in between Eric and Taylor; we just have even more conmessage. When Taylor"s mommy, Anne, asks him if he saw the party to sleep via Eric, Taylor claims, "I didn"t ask to be attacked," and also we can not forgain that.

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Lines That Haunt Me

"He wanted it." -- Eric Tanner

"This is the truth world have to believe" -- Leslie Graham

Record brand-new episodes of "Amerideserve to Crime" on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

Katie Barnes is a digital media associate at jiyuushikan.org. Follow them on Twitter at Katie_Barnes3.