nine eight seven six episode left on "How to Get Away with Murder," arguably the most intense and riveting show currently on television. We at HuffPost Entertainment are admittedly obsessed and, as we find ourselves playing detectives, we want to let you in on the fun.
The following is by no means corroborated by the series "How to Get Away with Murder," its creators or ABC. These are solely our own thoughts based on circumstantial evidence and, as Annalise Keating would say, they would never hold up in court. Check back as we update this post every Friday until the grand finale. We encourage you to join the conversation.
Spoilers ahead if you have not seen the episode titled "Freakin' Whack-a-Mole," which aired Oct. 30.
Okay, so we know who was murdered (Sam) and likely who murdered him (Laurel, Michaela, Connor, Wes and Rebecca), but do we really know why? We are led to believe Sam killed Lila and he is merely paying for his sins, and Annalise's students are the ones attempting to get away with his murder.
But what if we are being duped?
What if, Annalise knew about Sam and Lila, killed Lila herself in a fit of rage over her cheating husband's ways, and is using her students and her smarts to frame Sam? After all, she was Sam's mistress herself before becoming his wife, and it is implied that Bonnie had unsavory relations with the man of the house. Did she ask Nate to track down Sam's movements to and from Yale to check his whereabouts on the night of Lila's murder, or to set the police on Sam's trail, a wild goose chase of sorts?
Somewhere along the way (reminder: nine episodes left) something goes horribly wrong and her students not only believe her, they kill Sam for her. Perhaps when he attempts to tell them the truth about their revered professor? That's some mighty Kool-Aid.
Is Annalise brilliantly getting away with murder?
Do not read if you have not seen the episode titled "He Deserved to Die," which aired Nov. 6.
Conveniently, "HTGAWM" used the hashtag #WhoKilledSam tonight. Let's trace the four possibilities:
Rebecca did it. Yes, it's painfully obvious. Too obvious, some might say (and by some, I mean Twitter). But when you look at the evidence, why was she covered in blood when Wes took her to the shower? Why did Wes call her from the bodega on a burner cell to tell her they'll take care of it (it being Sam's body) and will protect her? Why did Nate approach her, saying he knows she didn't kill Lila but knows who did, implying -- thanks for the obvious juxtaposition, Shonda -- it was Sam. Rebecca killed Sam because he figured out she was cooperating with Nate on Lila's murder. He was coming for her, and she had to protect herself.
Wes did it. When Rebecca almost lost it in the motel room, saying she killed Sam and will go down for it before she lets Wes take the fall, it seemed entirely plausible that she did not kill Sam. Wes did. Wes has a soft spot for complicated women. From the sound of it, his mother certainly was one. He doesn't seem to care who killed Lila (he appears to be entirely convinced it wasn't Rebecca but cares very little who it actually was), all he cares about is protecting Rebecca from all evil. In this case, Sam is evil.
Bonnie did it. Did Bonnie sleep with Asher to ensure herself an alibi? Bonnie was always second fiddle at the house, but what if she knew Lila was pregnant? What if she couldn't bear the thought of being third in line to the throne, and jealousy got the best of her? She killed Lila in a delusional fit to get Sam (Rebecca would never wear red nail polish; Bonnie would), and then she killed Sam when she realized he will never be hers.
Annalise did it. Because, come on. For starters, there are all the nail references. The supposed puncture wounds on Lila's body, the red nail polish, Annalise tracing the scratch marks engraved deep into Wes' wall, the rubbing of her hands. Ants shmants. She strangled Lila because she knew Lila was pregnant. Not only was Sam cheating on her, she -- his wife -- wasn't able to bear his children. How dare his mistress get to have it all. Annalise then killed Sam when he slowly but finally realized what his high-powered wife had done. The phone call to Bonnie, all distressed and worried? Merely an alibi. Annalise killed Sam herself and had her students cover it up.
So, who's getting away with murder? The promos hint at a (dare we suggest, unsatisfying and incomplete) answer coming next week. Until then, we keep our money on Annalise.
Do not read if you have not seen the episode titled "He Has a Wife," which aired Nov. 13.
Liat Kornowski: Can I get an O to go with that M-G? Last night's episodes was nuts. Seriously, they could not have crammed more incriminating, yet at the same time confusing information into a one hour block. And can I just say, Sam is a shady, slimy man.
Lauren Weber: Bonnie said it best when she pointed out what a bad, bad man Annalise's husband is. But I think the real crazy twist of this episode is that it gives us enough evidence to incriminate Sam's killer: Annalise.
LK: Yeah... Does it though? I mean, yes, I was team Annalise all along (by which I mean -- team Annalise did it!) but now I think there's something way more sinister going on with Bonnie. Whose side is she on? It almost seemed like she's enamored with Annalise, not Sam. Like she would do anything for her. Like, kill Sam's mistress and then Sam for her, type thing.
LW: Definitely agree with you that there's something weird going on with Bonnie's single-handed devotion to Annalise, and we are overdue for more of her backstory. But I think by the end of last night, Sam Keating was walking into a murderess trap laid by Annalise herself.
While it's easy to dismiss the Annalise side for sheer obviousness (she's the smartest character on the show and teaches a class titled "How to Get Away With Murder"), this whole season has been building us up to believe our favorite law students murdered Sam Keating. After all, they're the only ones we've seen at the scene of the crime directly after it happened, they're the ones that dispose of the body, they're the ones with blood splatter -- it's all red herrings, I'm telling you.
LK: Oh man... I see what you're saying and if Annalise ends up being Sam's murderer, you won't find my jaw on the floor. But I do think the last few episodes have led us to believe it is her, which only begs a mega twist come mid-season finale that will throw this whole sequence of events out the window.
So, we started believing the students killed him, then at some point we moved on to Rebecca -- still not ruling her out, with her pseudo-detective ways -- and Wes, who might do it to protect her, then we were led to believe it's manipulative, conniving, brilliant Annalise. But Bonnie is the one you least suspect, and thus to me, the real killer.
Just for the sake of throwing a curve ball though: can it be Michaela? She was the one holding the trophy last, after all. And she is definitely distraught after that conversation with her mother-in-law.
LW: The only way it's Michaela is if she swings that trophy out of fear in Annalise's house. But I'm more inclined to believe she's hysterical in those flash-forward scenes because she knows she was the last person holding it before the killer, and her fingerprints are obviously all over it -- thus the motivation to help cover up the murder itself.
As for Annalise, I disagree that the last few episodes indicated she could be the killer. When I first watched the conclusion of "Freakin' Whack-a-Mole", where Annalise calls Bonnie asking where Sam could be, I thought she was off the hook for good. But now, after watching Annalise manipulate Wes, possibly Nate, and definitely Rebecca into gunning for her husband, I think that was all an act. She's been biding her time on Sam, trying to decide what she was going to do, and the pregnancy news was the final straw.
The way I see it, this goes down two ways. Annalise kills Sam in a fit of rage or she could also be acting in self-defense, as it's been hinted that Sam can get violent in previous episodes. Either way, she then gives an all powerful Viola Davis speech that intimidates her students into thinking they will be the ones blamed if they relay the real series of events to the authorities. You've seen an Annalise Keating takedown -- I'd probably believe I killed someone myself after she was done yelling at me.
LK: Seriously! Can we get an Emmy over here?
But to our point, I see what you're saying and am intrigued by the prospect of self-defense following a violent outburst from Sam. But, and bare with me here, what if it's Annalise and Bonnie? What if Annalise "kicked" Bonnie out of the house, communicating to her with her eyes (in a non sci-fi sort of way) that this is going down, she needs an alibi (Bonnie is heading over to Asher's) and they both need a scapegoat. The "frantic" phone call from Annalise to Bonnie is going on record, which we know because all calls are always on the record -- thanks, Nate and Rebecca! -- but in reality, they both took out Sam because both of them are strong, striking women scorned by a man who never deserved the power he had over them.
So in essence what I am saying is, it's Annalise, yes. But also Bonnie. Bonnie and Annalise killed Sam!
LW: You know, the timeline on when Bonnie gets to Asher's would seem to support your theory. She's doesn't call Asher until Connor, Wes, Michaela, Laurel and Sam's body are en route to the woods -- where did she go in between getting fired and sleeping with Asher?
You could be on to something here... maybe Bonnie offered to cover for Annalise as some sort of redemption? Or to get her job, and mentor-figure, back? I guess we'll have to wait until next week to be sure!
Spoilers ahead if you have not seen the episode titled "Kill Me, Kill Me, Kill Me," which aired Nov. 20.
Well, ladies and gentlemen, we now know #WhoKilledSam. It was ... Wes. It was Wes. It wasn't, as we suspected, Annalise, but more on that later. It was definitely not Bonnie (who has some serious issues we can't wait to learn more about).
We have to say though... For a moment there, Shonda definitely had us. Leading us to believe Michaela killed Sam by throwing him over in a heated chase, in an attempt to protect Laurel. But no. It was Wes, knight in shining armor Wes, who saved his lady Rebecca from certain death.
— How To Get Away ABC (@HowToGetAwayABC) November 21, 2014
The kicker of the night, of course, is that Annalise does know Sam is dead, since we see her sitting at her desk when Wes returns for the murder weapon. She is obviously getting away with murder by covering it up, lying to everyone but Wes about it, crying and pretending to care about Sam's whereabouts.
Did Sam even kill Lila? Does it matter?
Join us as the series resumes in January.