Picking up where the last episode left us, at the Kaczynski’s household, Ted’s brother David and his wife. Debating whether or not the manifesto they read in the paper was actually his brother based off of the letters that he had sent to them both over the years, after some tumultuous moments. Understandably being incredibly cautious, they don’t simply send in his letters and their assumption about him, they go through a lawyer who sends it in, and he will make it clear that this is not for distribution, even within the UTF [Unabomb Task Force]. This appeases them and they move forward. Receiving a call shortly afterwards telling them that their letter had been cleared, that “it wasn’t the right typewriter, it’s not him, your brother’s in the clear.” Interesting cinematic tool here, luring them into a false sense of security with the audience knowing that it is in fact him.
Tammy sees an envelope of the “do not distribute” letter sent in from David Kaczynski and immediately recognizes the ideas and the language within it. Knowing this will end in trouble as the UTF have their hands tied in regard to anyone else reading that letter. We jump to Fitz who’s at a cinema trip with his kids, after receiving Tammy’s call he rushes to his work, telling his kids he’ll be back before the films over. This episode is where we see the end product of his obsession and tunnel-vision behaviour, to the detriment of his children’s well-being and safety. Through montage we witness hours pass by where Fitz is reading the letter Tammy has sent page by page.
We then witness the crescendo of the episode. When Fitz drives through the night to make it to James Kaczynski’s house, the address for which was unearthed through highly unethical and illegal methods.. After some verbal altercations Fitz eventually talks David around. And upon entering his house, wee witness the dissolving of one of the biggest most spectacular failures that the FBI had made to date. The police sketch of the Unabomber. One of the most famous and circulated police sketches in America’s history. Fitz informs us,
“The woman at Rentech, the only person to ever have seen the Unabomber. The day after the Rentech bombing she described the Unabomber to a local sketch artist. The sketch was published and was so close that the Unabomber went into hiding for six years. But that isn’t the sketch. In 1994, 10 years after that bombing, the head of the Task Force decides he wants a new sketch, so he send a new sketch artist to the eye witness. And this time, what the eyewitness describes is that sketch. And it is iconic. It is the most famous police sketch in history. But it’s not the Unabomber. The second time around the eyewitness was describing the original sketch artist. Some crazy thing in the human memory, she was remembering the Unabomber. And she had spent three seconds looking at the Unabomber, but she spent the whole afternoon with him [the original sketch artist]. And over time, the faces blend together. – With this information at hand, we see the original sketch laid out beside a photo of Ted.
After acknowledging this fact, result in having to go to David’s mother to tell her that her son is the Unabomber. During this interaction, we hear the first whispers of what was long ignored and covered up [in real-life]. When mama Kaczynski says “But he was such a happy boy… Where did I go wrong? What happened? Did something go wrong at Harvard? I always felt like something changed inside him there.”
Aaaand the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Fitz arrives back at the Unabomb Task Force after three months and barges into the office with Ackerman. And presents The Unabomber.
Meet Ted Kaczynski. He was born in 1942 outside Chicago, makes him 53. He’s got an IQ of 167 he’s a bona fide genius. He attended Harvard on a full scholarship at age 16. Got a PhD in mathematics at the University of Michigan in ’68, which correlates with the formatting of the manifesto.
His dissertation was brilliant, it won prizes, got published, just it was so advances that only four or five mathematicians in the world could understand it. This plays into his need to be listened to and acknowledged as a profound genius thinker. He taught at Berkeley for two years before he withdrew into the woods in Lincoln, Montana. He’s living the life that he describes in the manifesto, free from technology, completely alone. He fits the profile. It fits the timeline. The language is a match. I got him. Ted Kaczynski is the Unabomber.