Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4 Review: Love Knocked Off

Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4 Review: Love Knocked Off
By: TV Fanatic Posted On: April 12, 2024 View: 26

If there is one thing viewers can count on when they tune in to Elsbeth, it's that the show wastes no time getting to the meat of the story.

Sadly, there is no meet-cute in Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4, despite the presence of a matchmaker.

First and foremost, audiences are treated to the uniquely hilarious presence of matchmaker Margo, played by comedian and actress Retta.

Elsbeth Horizontal Season 1 Episode 4

She brings her always perfectly timed comedic chops from Parks and Recreations and Good Girls right over to Elsbeth.

I will continue searching, but you've gotta understand finding a man who spends his free time protecting the coral reef, has good teeth, and flies private takes time.


The formulaic approach of Elsbeth to cast episodic murderers with well-known faces is becoming a staple of the show that I fully support. 

Right away, it's hard not to root for Margo despite her being a rather cold-hearted murderer. Although, if Lainey is the type of client she constantly finds herself at the service of, it's no wonder she's checked out emotionally.

Margo: Now you can divorce Lainey and skip town with a sizable amount of her money. Minus my sizable cut.
Gabriel: No, I can't do it.
Margo: What do you mean you can't do it? The stage has been set. You've been picking fights with her like we rehearsed, right?
Gabriel: Yeah, and I hated it. The thing is I love her.
Margo: How?!

Usually, the idea of a jaded matchmaker brings to mind the cliched approach of an early 2000s romcom. However, Margo is a great example of how fine a line there is between love and hate.

Lainey and Margo hunched over by the counter - Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4

As if this episode wasn't already love-struck with irony, using a cupid statuette as the murder weapon is a level of camp that has come to be expected and appreciated from a show where the lead character rocks pastels year-round.

Speaking of our titular character, just when it seems like there's nothing left to reveal about Elsbeth, she induces whiplash with some genuinely unexpected revelations about herself.

And lawyers always end up having sex on top of desks. You never see the stapler until it's too late.


One second, it feels like Elsbeth is so naive she makes you wonder how she manages her taxes, and a moment later, she says something that has you questioning her internet search history.

I have so many fond childhood memories sitting by a warm fire on a cozy rug. Or was that a movie? No, that was me.


Even with the lovable and charming portrayal of Elsbeth through Carrie Preston, there's no denying that Retta chews up every scene as Margo.

Very reminiscent of Donna Meagle.

Margo Shows a Paper - Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4

The way Margo manages to exude total confidence while being utterly oblivious to the fact that everything she does only solidifies her more and more as the obvious murderer.

When it comes to covering her tracks, she genuinely doesn't give a thought to any of it until Elsbeth lays it out in painful detail for her.

It's as if Margo has never seen any movie or show about murder, ever. Someone please get this woman a box set of "How to Get Away with Murder."

Where does she dump the victim? A large body of water. What does she use to dispose of the body? A one-of-a-kind and prominently displayed rug from her own home.

Margo Cannot Believe It - Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4

As someone who loves a perfectly chosen decorative rug, the only way mine is getting used to wrap a dead body is if it is my own corpse to be buried with.

Use my good rug to wrap up a body? In this economy? Absolutely not.

Just when you think living in the lap of luxury has made Margo blind to anything other than the finer things in life, it's made clear that she can't even tell the difference between bronze and brass when she tries to replace the murder weapon.

From the beginning of the episode to the very end, Margo is her own worst enemy. Every bad thing that happens is traced right back to her with bread crumbs big enough to choke a pigeon.

Elsbeth Gets Handsy Season 1 Episode 4

This was an open-and-shut case for Elsbeth and everyone at home watching.

There was even a moment during the episode when I found myself saying out loud, "Really? So, everyone is just gonna act like the woman who was last to see the dead conman that she herself found in jail isn't the prime suspect?"

This was an unprecedented occasion where the rich, obnoxious socialite was truly innocent. That in and of itself should show that Elsbeth perfectly toes the line between clever and over-the-top comedy.

There is so much to love about this show. I suspect every viewer has that one thing about it that makes them crave more.

You were right about the Hamptons. So pricey. But everyone here is super friendly. Until you talk to them for too long.


For me, it's Elsbeth's unique approach to confronting each murderer.

Margo Is In a Magazine - Elsbeth Season 1 Episode 4

Unlike other detectives who smoke from a pipe or dribble out exposition with the strongest of French accents, Elsbeth needs no audience other than the murderers themselves. She just lets the chips fall where they may.

To her credit though, the police are never more than a few minutes behind her.

Thankfully, the ride from beginning to end is so much fun, that reality is not just easily suspended but thrown out with the kitchen sink.

On a lighter note, it's safe to say the friendship between Kaya and Elsbeth is in full bloom. This makes things all the sweeter when Captain Wagner gives Officer Blanke the lead in this case. 

Kaya and Elsbeth dressed to the nines Season 1 Episode 4

Like Elsbeth, it's hard not to hope there has been an error somewhere about the Captain's possible corruption. He has only gotten more likable with each episode.

I have my theories about what might be happening but it's still too early in the season to know. Do you believe Captain Wagner is indeed corrupted?

And how will Officer Blanke feel when she learns the truth about what really brought Elsbeth to the Big Apple?

Drop a comment below if you have any theories or even if you just want to point out yet another hilarious part of this fun and campy episode!

Joshua Pleming is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. You can follow him on X.

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