Sugar – S01E02 – These People, These Places | Transcript

Sugar suspects Melanie's not telling the full story. Meanwhile, he and Ruby may not be the only ones looking into the mysterious body in Olivia's trunk.

Original release date: April 5, 2024

Plot: Sugar suspects Melanie’s not telling the full story. Meanwhile, he and Ruby may not be the only ones looking into the mysterious body in Olivia’s trunk.

* * *

[John] We got off to a rough start.

It happens.

With cases like this.

Missing rich girl.

Dead guy in the trunk.

Then me, with all my, um… I don’t know… issues.

I’m not being modest.

I’m really good at what I do.

And a man like Jonathan Siegel wouldn’t have called me otherwise.

I just needed a moment to settle in.

Anyway, back to business.

Bernie Siegel, Olivia’s father and former husband to the late Rachel Kaye.

Also a movie producer, although not in his father’s class.

Please, call me Bernie. Hey, I love this place.

[John] His last big hit was about a surfing monkey.

It’s, uh, class.

When I’m in town, I won’t stay anywhere else.

Yeah, a man of discerning taste. I appreciate that.

[server] Yes, gentlemen. What would you like?

Two slices of white toast. Side of cottage cheese.

A pot of hot water with lemon.

Just coffee. Black.

[chuckles] What I really want is bacon and eggs, but I’m on what they call a bland diet.

Anyway, what can I do for you?

I’d like to talk about Olivia.

Yeah. I gotta tell you, Sugar.

[stammers] I think you’re wasting your time and my father’s money.

Olivia will come back any day now. Just like she always does.

Ready to go to rehab again.

If I was her father, I’d find that concerning.

You’re not, and I don’t.

Your father does.

[Bernie clicks tongue]

[server] And here we are.

[Bernie] I’ll tell you something.

I know Olivia better than anyone. Certainly better than my father.

[scoffs] And I know her a hell of a lot better than Melanie.

I’ll tell you that.

You had quite a time with her last night, didn’t you?

I’m a little upset about that. I have to say. I mean, she is my ex-wife.

Oh, you didn’t know that, did you, Mr. Private Investigator?

You and Melanie Matthews were married in Las Vegas, Nevada on New Year’s Eve 1999.

Three days later you were both arrested for malicious destruction of property, possession of narcotics, drunk and disorderly conduct, and discharge of a firearm. [chuckles]

Hmm. It was a hell of a honeymoon.

Please. Discreetly.

Where did you get this?

That type of Polaroid film was introduced in 1996.

You were married to Rachel Kaye then, weren’t you?

You know I was.

Did you take that photograph?

No, I did not.

Thank you for telling me the truth, Bernie. I appreciate it.

Mm-hmm. [smacks lips] Hmm.

Did you ever love someone? I mean, really love them?

Like if the grim reaper came to you and said, “I’m gonna take the life of this person that you love unless you give me your life.”

Well, I would have. For Rachel.

And Olivia’s all I got left of her.

And if you think that I don’t care about my daughter, you fuck, then fuck you and fuck off.

And I’m paying for your fucking coffee.

Thank you.

[John] He’s hiding something. Or at least I hit a nerve.

I mean, being told to fuck off is usually a sign of progress.

[metal clanks]

[John] Davy Siegel and Kenny, his guy Friday.

Let’s be quick, huh?

[Kenny] Yeah.

[David] You check in here?

Check the bedroom.

[David] Hey, uh, uh, uh, get the, uh, listening device going.

Copy that.

[John] Spying on the person hired to find his sister.

Why would he do that? What’s he afraid of?

[David] Hey, uh, uh, uh…

[Kenny] Find anything?

[David] Yeah, but… Just some weird magazines…


…or whatever. Noth…

There’s no wallet. There’s no…


[John] It helps when they’re stupid.

[David] Hold on. I got some letters.

[Kenny] Well, bring ’em here. Let me take some photos.

[John] It’s not always as much fun, but helps move things along.

[Kenny] Got ourselves a cinephile.

[John] Hey, Helen. It’s me.

[David] Yeah, we do.

Someone’s gonna call you.

They want to talk to my mom.

Obviously they think that’s you.

God bless paper trails.

They’re on their way. Uh-huh.

Just because I could see Davy coming doesn’t mean he isn’t dangerous.

I can’t have him digging into my past, for one thing.

No, that won’t do at all.

With Bernie being no help and Davy being something even less than that,

hopefully I can get some leads talking to Olivia’s friends.

You know, just like in the movies.

[Olivia’s friend] The first time we got high was, like, sixth grade.

Sixth grade? How old?

[friend scoffs] Like, 11.


[friend chuckles]

But we haven’t hung out with her

in almost a year.

Because she was sober?

Why do you think she was getting sober?

Was she using more than anyone else or drinking more?

Yeah. I think she started to get a little out of control.

Are you sure?

You should have seen her in her heyday.

She did some shit that would have landed most kids in jail.

Like what?

A lot of drugs, dude. [chuckles]

[chuckles] Okay.

But I think she had, like, a life-changing moment

that just kind of freaked her out.

[John] Do you know anything about her romantic life? Boyfriends?


You’re not lying to me, are you, sunshine?

[John] You remember her being with him?

No, not that I could recall.

Nothing regular? No guy she saw?

Not the way we were partying.

Oh, yeah?

It was a different guy all the time. You know how it goes.

I would have no idea, but I… I trust what you say.

Hey. John Sugar.

[friend 2] Hey.

Did you ever see her with this guy?

Never saw him.

You sure?

Positive. She only buys from me. She hasn’t bought in a long time.

Like months, weeks? What’s a long time?

I don’t know. At least a year, man.

What about you guys? You still doing drugs? What’s going on?

[chuckles] I’m finishing my degree.

I’m gonna… I’ve gotten it together.

You are?


No comment.

I thought so.

[friend laughs]

Okay. Well, if you think of anything else, call this number. Thank you.

Thanks for taking the time. All right.

[friend 3] Yeah. Of course.

[John] Sounds like Olivia really had moved on from her old life.

That’s the good news.

The bad news is her new life,

well, it somehow seems to have gotten her into even worse trouble.

It’s time to update Jonathan Siegel. I got some questions for him too.

The Boy in the Corner was a massive hit. It was a phenomenon.

The Man in the Corner is gonna be one too.

This is David’s big comeback, and nothing’s gonna change that.

If this story comes out, no studio is gonna release this movie,

and you’ll be out 60 million bucks.

You broke the cardinal rule of producing, Bernie.

You used your own money.

The story’s not gonna come out, right?

No. We have signed ironclad NDAs from seven of the eight victims.

Don’t use the word “victim.”

But what worries me is accuser number eight.

[Bernie] Oh, she’s a pain in the ass, but we’ll get there. Trust me.

One way or the other, she’ll come around.

Well, the other seven certainly feel you’ve been generous.

[scoffs] Hold on a second. Bernie, are you saying that Davy is guilty?

Did I say that, sweetheart?

He did not say that.

And it’s David.

What if we don’t get there with number eight?

If we don’t, then it’s he said, she said, and we’ll see her in court.

We’ll get there.

[Bernie’s wife] Do not use the word “victim.”

No one is to use the word “victim.”

[Ruby] Well, what are you thinking, John?

[John] I don’t know.

I mean, this Siegel family is something else.

Hmm. Okay. Why?

You want a drink?

Uh, no, thanks.

I went back to see Jonathan again.

[Ruby] Oh, wow. So?

[John] Since you and I last spoke, I met a few of your family members.

Oh, I’m sorry about that. Let me guess. Bernie.

Yeah. He doesn’t share your concern

about Olivia’s disappearance.

[Jonathan] Of course, he doesn’t.

[Ruby] Oh, really?


Yeah, he sent his son Davy and his bodyguard

to snoop around my hotel room

while we were having breakfast.

[Ruby] Oh, God.

Olivia is a screwup. She always will be.

That’s a narrative that suits Bernie the best.

Lets him focus on making bad movies and his idiot son.

Oh. [sighs] I shouldn’t have said that, should I?

Um, not all Bernie’s pictures are bad.



David is, uh, Bernie’s son by Margit Sorensen?

[Jonathan] Have you met her yet?


[scoffs] Another paradigm of clawing self-interest. Horrible woman.

I’m sensing yours is not the closest of families.


[swallows] …we have our reasons.

[Ruby] John, do you mind giving me a hand?


Well, we seem to have covered everything under the sun except for my granddaughter.

Thank you for your patience.


This is a record of the GPS

from Olivia’s car.


[Ruby] Oh, come on.

[John chuckles]

[Ruby] John, sit.

Um, I found that the week before she disappeared,

she made repeat trips to a location that caused me concern.

A woman who lived at this address, Carmen Vasquez,

was raped and murdered recently.

Olivia’s car was there the night that Miss Vasquez was killed.

And this may have something to do with the death

of the man who killed Miss Vasquez.

Why would you think that?

[John] Because his body is in the trunk of Olivia’s car right now.


[John] Clifford Carter.

Arrests for assault, rape and human trafficking.

[Ruby] John.

[John] Now lying dead in the car of missing Hollywood royalty.

Sit. [sighs]


[John] I’m obligated to report to the police

the discovery of any homicide victim, Mr. Siegel.

You haven’t though, have you?

I’m gonna pretend like I never opened the trunk of that car.

I’d appreciate it.

But still, I feel that her life could be in danger.

Jesus. God.


[Ruby] John.

There’s a lot going on. It’s… These people, you know, these places.

I-I should be narrowing things down by now…

[Ruby] Sit.

…but the case just keeps growing.

To me the question is

there a connection between Olivia’s disappearance

and whatever else is going on with this…

[Ruby] Okay. [sighs] That’s what I mean.


Nothing. Missed you, Sugar.

I missed you too.

Yeah. Which is why I thought it would be nice

for us to enjoy one another’s company.

Ah. The case. Okay. Okay.

Can we do that? Can we just enjoy

each other’s company…


…and eat together?

Sure. Let’s…

Let’s give it a shot, shall we?


[chewing] This was a great idea.


Lunch. [chuckles]


How’ve you been?

Good. Busy.

Look at you.


I bet chef extraordinaire.

More than 15 of us you manage now?


Even though there was no cooking involved.


Wow, 19, huh? Hmm.

Bye, Mirembe.


[John] Just, before I forget, I already called Charlie,

you know, to help with surveillance.

Wow. Without consulting me?

I was being proactive.

Ah, proactive. Okay. Well, remember, you have to keep a low profile.

I know. I know.

Okay. How often does that happen?

[grunts] It’s good.

Have you called Dr. Vickers?

I’ve thought about it.


I’ll see him at the meeting tomorrow. I’ll talk to him then. Okay?

No, not okay. Call him today.

[engine starts]

It’s good. Thanks for lunch.

[John] Ruby likes to worry, and I love her for it.

But I’ve got work to do.

Right now the best link I have to finding Olivia is Melanie Matthews,

which is convenient because she called and said she’d like to meet.

[Melanie] Hi, I’m Melanie.

[group] Hi, Melanie.

I’m an alcoholic.

I haven’t been to a meeting in a long time.

And I mean a long time. I was 23 years sober.

But as of two weeks ago, I started drinking like a fish.

But that all ended last… [breathes shakily] …night.

‘Cause last night I brought a total stranger into my house,

and that’s something I haven’t done since I was in my 20s.

But because I was fucked-up, I brought a stranger into my home.

I think the reason we get fucked-up is simple.

[John] They’re lonely.

We’re lonely.

[Melanie] And we’re afraid.

And here we live in a world with millions of people

all with the capacity to love and be loved, and somehow…

[breathes shakily] …we just can’t get our shit together.

And I think it’s because we’re afraid.

We’ve been hurt in the past, and we don’t want to be hurt again.

So… we get fucked-up,

make bad choices

and settle for any kind of connection we can find.

But you know what happened last night?

The guy didn’t hurt me. He didn’t steal from me.

He didn’t even fuck me, even though at the time I told him I wanted him to.

No. You know what he did?

He took care of me.

He tucked me in… [inhales sharply] …and then he left.

[John] I was technically working. Still am.

[Melanie] And, um… And this morning when I woke up,

I was struck by the possibility

that this man might have been sent to me by my Higher Power.

Or he’s just a decent guy.

Or he’s gay.


[Melanie] Ha ha. [chuckles]

But, you know, it-it doesn’t matter what he was or is.

What matters is how he made me feel,

and he made me feel like I deserve a second chance.

So, thanks.

[group applauding]

[Melanie] Thanks for coming.

Thanks for asking me.

You want to talk about Olivia?

I do.

[clicks tongue] Ah. I’m still hungover. You wanna get some food?


Can I get a ride?



When I woke up, I dumped all the booze, so sparkling water is all you get.

That’s fine.

Yeah… [sighs] …I know.

You can’t get drunk.

You remembered.

Yeah, that I will never forget.

So, yesterday, were you following me, John Sugar…

No. No, complete coincidence.

…private investigator? No? Mmm.

I was just following another lead.

Oh, this one.

Yeah, that’s the one.


Well, if you wanted to talk about Olivia, you could have just asked.

I’m not sure I would have believed everything you said last night.

I hate to break it to you. Drunk, I’m an open book.

Sober, I’m cagey as hell.

You feel the need to be cagey when it comes to Olivia?

I didn’t say that.

Can I ask you a question?

Why was she here almost every night the week before she disappeared?

What makes you think she was here?

I know she was here.

How do you know?

GPS system in her car keeps a record.


[chuckles] How do you know she was driving?

How do you know a friend didn’t take her car? [laughs]

Is that what happened?

I guess this is what you call being cagey, huh?



Well, I’ve been through most of Olivia’s social media posts

over the past six months.

And it’s mostly pretty normal stuff,

but it changed when you two started spending more time together.

You know, her focus, it shifted.

It turned to women’s rights issues.

What… What’s wrong with that?

No, not a… not a thing.

[stammers] I think she finally found something she was passionate about.

But two weeks ago, when she disappeared, well,

her online presence disappeared also, and that’s concerning.

Well, when you’re talking about an addict, there’s a reason for a shift in behavior.

She’s probably using again. [sighs] Look, i-it…

She’s probably gonna walk in here any day now,

just hungover and strung out and ready to get back to rehab.

That’s funny.

Your ex-husband told me the same thing this morning,

using almost exactly the same words.

[John] Of course, he did. Circling the wagons.

Yeah, well, he called me after you had breakfast with him.

Bernie was a terrible husband, but he’s always been a great friend.

Is that right?


[John] That hair touch, that’s her tell.

Look at this.

I need you to tell me if you’ve ever seen this man.

Melanie, if you’re in trouble or if you know Olivia’s in trouble,

I can help. Just tell me what happened.

I’ve never seen that man before in my life.

Why are you doing this?

Doing what?

This. Your little act. I…

I know you’re lying. I just can’t figure out why.

Maybe you’re hiding something.

[chuckles] Like what?

Like where she is.

Or where her body can be found.

Get out of my house.

I know you think you’re helping her, but you’re doing her more harm than good.

Okay, get out of my house.

Let me make this clear.

I will find Olivia.

It’s what I do.

I’m very good at it.

[Melanie chuckles]


[John] Hey, Charlie.

I think she knows where the girl is, and she’ll take us there tomorrow.

Let’s get the van ready, yeah?

I’ll see you in the morning. All right. Bye.

You know, I think that movies are a conspiracy.

I mean it.

They are actually a conspiracy because they set you up, Florence.

They set you up from the time you’re a little kid.

They set you up to believe in everything.

In ideals and strength and good guys and, of course, love.

[chuckles] But there’s no Charles Boyer in my life, Florence.

I never met Clark Gable. I never met Humphrey Bogart.

I never… I never met any of them.

You know who I mean.

[Florence stammers]

[actress] I mean, they don’t exist, Florence. That’s the truth.

[John] That car again.

Someone keeping an eye on me.

On and off, keeping their distance.

[chuckles] They’re pretty good, but I see ’em.

[car horn honking]

[person] Hey! Hey! Hey!

[John] Carl?


Hey, anyone seen Carl?

Tall guy. Blond hair. A-Anyone? Carl.


[clicks tongue] Carl!

[person] Get the hell out of here, man.

[line ringing]

[line beeps]

[automated voice] We’re sorry.

You have reached a number…


…that has been disconnected.

Come here. Come here.

In you go. Come on. Attaboy. Attaboy.

[John] I know. I know.

What do I care?

What business is this of mine?

Yeah. I often ask myself the same question.

[grunts] All right.


[Wiley panting]

Goddamn it, Carl.

[toilet flushes]

Who the fuck are you?

What did you give him?

What did you give him?

Fuck off.

[both grunting]




[grunts, coughs]

[John] I don’t like hurting people.

[drug dealer coughing]

[John] I really don’t.

[drug dealer grunting, coughing]


I was never here.

But this is what I mean. [stammers]

A drug overdose. Happens every day.

Why do I care?

[sighs] Why do I feel angry? Why do I feel anything at all?


[Wiley whines]



[John] Hey.


You’re interrupting my bridge club.

Ah, right. Tuesday night bridge. Fun.

[chuckles] All right. Good night, John.

[John] Can I come in?

Is there something urgent regarding the Siegel case?

No. No, not really. No. I-I, um…


He needs a place to stay.



[Wiley barks]

This is Mirembe’s house.


[Mirembe hisses]

And Mirembe only has one rule.

No dogs.



Oh, uh… [stammers] …gray Volkswagen.

[stammers] What?

Today I was being tailed by a gray VW. You got any idea who that might be?

Do you think it could be the Siegels, like, keeping tabs on you?

No, I… I think it was someone else.

Did you take care of our friend in the trunk?

Do it.

[Mirembe meows]


[John] Come on, Wiley.

Big mistake. They could have been friends.

[Wiley barking]

He just left. He said he was being tailed. No, obviously they are watching him.

[beeping, chimes]

I’ll be a son of a bitch.

[John] So much for body disposal.

Someone beat me to it.

[Bernie] What am I looking at?

[David] Magazines about movies. Movies I never heard of.

Movies nobody’s ever heard of.

[Bernie] Mm-hmm.

What are these?

Letters from his mother, sir.

[David] Yeah, here. [chuckles]

You took this?

What? He already read it.

[Bernie sighs] Next time, Davy…


Next time, David, let Kenny take his pictures, okay?

All right. What the hell is this?

[David] Uh, an invitation.

Yeah. [stammers] I can see that, but to what?

I don’t know. I… [stammers] I googled it. I… I couldn’t find anything.

[stammers] It doesn’t even have a location, Mr. Siegel.

Just a date and time. Tomorrow night.

What about the bug?

Nothing. He must have found it.

[sighs, stammers] Listen to me and learn something.

I think of my life as an ecosystem.

You know what that is?

Yes, I know what an ecosystem is.

[Bernie] Good, then pay attention. Because in my ecosystem,

there’s me, there’s my wife, there’s my children,

and there’s my production company.

All I care about is my ecosystem.

So when a foreign body comes into it, I go on fucking high alert

and I wonder, “Is this a positive or a negative force?”

And the only way I can truly answer that is to truly understand the foreign body.

The last thing we need is him looking beyond Olivia to anyone else,

like you, David.

So, find out everything you can about this Mr. John Sugar.

Fuck yeah.

I want a report by tomorrow evening.

[David] You got it, Dad.

[John] Clifford Carter and Carmen Vasquez.

What’s the connection to Olivia? Why can’t I see it?

I’m not supposed to get this involved.

Just observe and report.

Write it down.

That’s the real mission.

That’s the idea anyways.

[glass thuds]

That’s what Ruby keeps telling us…

but I can’t help it.

I can’t stop.

I’m involved.

She reminds me of Djen.

I hope this case has a different ending. But, yeah…

she reminds me of my sister.

[family singing in Spanish]

[John] I’m gonna find her.

She’s out there somewhere.

[all singing in Spanish]

[singing in Spanish, chuckling]

[parent singing in Spanish, laughing]

[gasps, screams]

[speaks Spanish]

[burglar 1] No.

No, no, no. Back in the apartment.

[burglar 2] Buenas noches.

[whispering in Spanish]

Teresa, right?

So, she’s gonna take the kids into the bedroom…

[both speak Spanish]

…to watch some television.

Or I will give them to him.

[burglar 3] Come on. Let’s go watch a movie.

Ándele. Okay? [speaks Spanish]

[burglar 2] So, Teresa, uh, I’m looking for my friend. [sighs]

Clifford Carter. He was fucking your sister.

I don’t know him.

[burglar 2] Don’t lie to me, Teresa.

All right, I’ll give you one of those.

But if you lie to me again, I’m gonna punch you really hard in the face.

Deal? [inhales sharply]

Hey, Clifford’s my main man.

You know, he knows things about me and my clients I don’t want anybody else knowing.

And he stored all this shit… my shit… on his phone.

But now I haven’t seen or heard from Clifford in over two weeks.

Makes me nervous.

Can you understand that?


[burglar 2] This was the last text he sent before he disappeared.

It’s your sister Carmen, right?


[burglar 2 chuckles]

Took me two weeks to figure out who this bitch was.

So, obviously, in a perfect world we’d be talking to Carmen

about what the hell happened to our main man.

But it’s not a perfect world because she’s dead.

But we can talk to you, right, Teresa?



So, this is the text he sent after that.

You have any idea who this is?

[Teresa cries]

Thank you.

Thank you. Thank you.

She… She knows.

[sighs deeply]

We’ll talk to her next.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Read More

Weekly Magazine

Get the best articles once a week directly to your inbox!