‘Only Murders in the Building’ Theory: Who Was the Body in Episode 1?
[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Only Murders in the Building Season 1.]
In the opening flash-forward scene of the pilot, several police officers are searching through the halls of the Arconia apartment building while Charles (Steve Martin) and Oliver (Martin Short) rush down the staircase to find Mabel (Selena Gomez). Upon entering the apartment, they see her kneeling above a corpse, covered in blood. Looking up, she tells them, “It’s not what you think.”
So, who could the victim be? Luckily, September 28’s Episode 7 gives us some hints as to who it is, what could have happened, and what it all means going forward.
The Dead Body Is Most Likely Oscar
Unfortunately, Oscar (Aaron Dominguez) might meet his end not long after getting out of jail for the death of his girlfriend, Zoe (Olivia Reis). The body is seen wearing Oscar’s same tie-dye hoodie from previous episodes. While that may seem like an obvious giveaway, why else would anyone take his hoodie and wear it? The series wouldn’t have made such a big deal over the identity of “Tie-dye Guy” if the hoodie wasn’t going to be significant later on.
Who Killed Him?
While viewers have known that Oscar was wrongfully accused in Zoe’s death, it was revealed in Episode 7 that Teddy’s (Nathan Lane) son Theo (James Caverly) is the culprit, having accidentally pushed her off the roof of The Arconia during a fight. There is a good chance the podcast gang will discover the truth, meaning Oscar will likely find out as well. Given that he spent several years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, he may choose to go after Theo or Teddy for revenge. On the other hand, Teddy and Theo could decide to take him out once the truth is revealed. Regardless, either Teddy or Theo will kill Oscar, intentionally or not. Whether Mabel is present for his murder is unclear, but one way or another, she will find Oscar’s body and get covered in his blood trying to help him.
While some viewers could speculate that Mabel is responsible, the pair’s longstanding friendship and romantic tension seem to indicate her innocence. After all, she tells Charles and Oliver the situation isn’t what it looks like. Though she withheld information from the men in the past, the group has learned to trust one another throughout the season, so there would be no reason they shouldn’t trust her then.
The Murder Will Become Cinda Canning’s New Podcast Topic
At the end of Episode 4, another flash-forward scene teases a new podcast from the group’s favorite “queen of murder podcasts,” Cinda Canning (Tina Fey). Quoting a line from Charles’ old television show Brazzos, she states, “What happens when your second chance becomes your last shot,” only to reveal that Charles, Oliver, and Mabel are the subjects of her newest podcast, Only Murderers in the Building.
This could easily tie into the theory of Oscar’s death. To start, the line could refer to the fact that Oscar was getting a second chance at life after prison, only to have it cut short. Given the podcast’s title, it will focus not on Tim Kono’s murderer but rather others in the building—probably whoever is responsible for Oscar’s death. But the podcast could also focus on Mabel.
In leaked set photos from earlier this year, the same Mabel covered in blood from Episode 1 is seen being arrested by Detective Williams (Da’Vine Joy Rudolph). Mabel will likely wrongfully be accused of murder, just as Oscar once was. So the plural “murderers” in the podcast’s title could be about the alleged and true murderer of Oscar, with Cinda attempting to prove Mabel’s innocence in the case.
With a few more episodes to go before the end of the season, fans won’t have to wait too much longer to uncover the truth of this mystery and that of Tim Kono’s demise.
Only Murders in the Building, New Episodes Tuesdays, Hulu