The Book of Kevin
Written by Damon Lindelof & Patrick Somerville
Directed by Mimi Leder
In an earlier time, members of an Australian church community place ladders on the side of their homes. A family distributes its possessions and, dressed all in white, climbs the ladder to their rooftop; other followers do the same at their homes. Looking to the sky, they wait: Nothing happens. Seasons change and the family returns to the roof again and again, to no avail. The number of believers dwindle, but the mother of the family continues the ritual even as her husband and son turn away. She heads to the small, now dilapidated church, and huddles on the floor with the remaining believers, everyone in white.
Evie Murphy wakes up on the floor of the Jarden Visitor's Center and approaches Meg Abbott. While the rest of the Guilty Remnant sleep, the two women notice a small "snake camera" working its way through a hole in the wall. Evie rushes outside to find the area being evacuated. A plane flying overhead drops something straight at her.
Three years later, a crater remains in the place of the Visitor's Center. It is two weeks before the seventh anniversary of the Departure, and Kevin Garvey, Chief of Police, saddles up on a white horse to lead tourists into Miracle. In the town center, Kevin finds Tommy, now a cop himself, arguing over a Gary Busey float with some visitors. Kevin handles the situation and reminds Tom about dinner that night -- Tom asks if anyone remembers it's his birthday.
During a packed service, Matt Jamison makes a point of drawing attention to his wife Mary, walking and talking, and holding their son Noah. Kevin heads to the chapel's back office; at the sight of him, Michael quickly shuts his laptop. When Matt arrives, Kevin asks him to tone it down and is surprised when his brother-in-law agrees without argument. After Kevin leaves, Matt checks with Michael, who assures him Kevin saw nothing.
Kevin briefs the Miracle police to prepare them for the upcoming anniversary. Nora arrives to remind the cops to contact her if anyone says "Departure" during investigations. Happily embracing, the couple jokes about the cast Nora has on her arm.
Once in his office, Kevin is shocked to find Dean, his dog-shooting companion from Mapleton, waiting to speak with him. Dean is convinced dogs are now taking human form, and urges him to test the saliva on a senator's sandwich for dog DNA.
A man places his painted palm onto a blank sheet of paper. John Murphy hangs the paper, and gives the man a reading about his dead father. Kevin walks into the Murphy home and knowingly heads upstairs, where Laurie is feeding John names and answers through the use of social media and an unseen earpiece. Kevin tells his ex-wife about Dean. Laurie reminds him it is better not to tell someone they are in the middle of a breakdown -- exactly what Kevin has done. John comes in and shreds the cash the man paid him for the "reading." He leans over and kisses Laurie, now his wife.
That evening Tommy walks in to a "surprise" party; Jill shows up holding balloons. After cake, the men sit around, remembering where they were at 25. Kevin describes a minor car accident involving a woman with a 2-year-old son, revealing it was how he met Laurie and Tom. He calls it "destiny," prompting Matt and Michael to exchange a significant look. Kevin glances over at Nora rocking Noah back and forth.
Saying goodbye before her return to school, Jill jokes she won't see her father again. More seriously, she asks if Nora has spoken about Lily, and a concerned Kevin wonders if he should try to get her to.
The next morning after Nora heads out for the day, Kevin grabs a plastic bag and a roll of duct tape. Placing the plastic over his head and taping it tightly around his neck, Kevin sits on his bed, inhaling deeply.
Kevin leaves the house and answers a radio call from Tommy, directing him to the Miracle Water Hole. A group of teens, wearing shirts with Evie's face on them, is claiming to have poisoned the "holy" water, preventing Matt's baptisms. The leader of the protest reminds the crowd a military drone targeted the unarmed GR and vaporized them three years ago. The police try to handle the angry crowd but it turns violent quickly when the parishioners throw rocks at the demonstrators. Kevin surprises everyone by jumping into the water to prove it's not poisoned. Michael walks in after him and baptizes Kevin, who later whispers, "That didn't count."
Driving away from the site, Tommy asks about the protestors' claims. Kevin repeats the story given to the town: A gas leak blew up the Visitor's Center, incinerating the people inside. Tommy calls bull, but the conversation is interrupted when Dean shoots at the car, causing it to crash. Dean aims at Kevin, but Tommy kills Dean first. Kevin urges his son to talk to someone about what happened, cryptically describing the time he shot Patti while working as an assassin. A dog walks up to Dean's body and snatches the peanut butter sandwich from his pocket.
Nora tells Kevin Mary is leaving Matt and returning to Mapleton with Noah. Mary explains Matt won't let her leave the city for fear she'll slip back into her coma. She reveals Matt is writing a book about Kevin: "He thinks the New Testament is getting old."
Kevin returns to the church to confront Matt, and realizes Michael and John are also involved. The men recall the times Kevin cheated death -- including Kevin's experience in the hotel. They believe he can't die while in Miracle. Matt hands Kevin a leather-bound book. Outside, Kevin holds the book over a fire, but doesn't throw it in. Overhead a plane spells out: 13 DAYS TO GO.
Elsewhere, a gray-haired woman collects messages from a flock of homing pigeons, and cycles down an empty dirt road to a stone church. A nun greets her, remarking they don't usually get so many birds so close together. "Love is in the air," she says. She pays the woman, then pauses to ask, "Sarah, does the name 'Kevin' mean anything to you?"
Nora, aged several years and now answering to "Sarah," says, "No."