Numb3rs: Devil Girl

Wednesday 7 April 2010 at 11.00pm on Five

Continuing this week is the sixth series of the intriguing crime drama. In this episode, the FBI attempts to track down a murderer targeting men who solicit prostitutes. Initially the agents assume that their culprit fits the typical serial-killer mould, but some surprising DNA evidence forces them to reassess their theories. Meanwhile, Colby and Nikki are involved in a serious car crash.

At an upmarket LA hotel, a man’s body is found, dressed in women’s underwear and make-up. The agents quickly establish that the death of their victim, Edward Zurlanski, appears to be the fifth at the hands of a serial killer murdering men who frequent prostitutes.

The agents pull in Siouxsie Dark, the call girl seen with Zurlanski before he died. Siouxsie tells David that she saw only one person on her way to Zurlanski’s hotel room, but all she can describe are his cheap, brown loafers. “OK, a nondescript guy who’s basically invisible to women,” says an exasperated Charlie. “Sounds like every other serial killer in history besides Ted Bundy,” Colby replies.

The team’s next move is to speak to Jack Steves, a social worker who runs an organisation providing advocacy and health advice to prostitutes. The agents are suspicious when he cannot provide an alibi. Steves tells Colby that he spends most of his evenings on the move, dishing out advice to the girls. “Prostitutes are like rabbits dodging hawks – I know, I used to be one,” he explains to the agent.

Steves has a number of clear motives for killing and humiliating the men, but the agents are forced to change the angle of their investigation when forensic evidence from Zurlanski’s body indicates that a female was involved in the murder. Aware that few women could single-handedly overpower the male victims, the agents suspect that they should be hunting a pair of killers.

Just as another victim is discovered, Charlie’s colleague Professor Lazlo (Tony Hale, ‘Arrested Development’) makes a breakthrough with the female killer’s DNA, establishing that she is a haemophiliac. While there is no perfect match on the FBI database, there is a close family match to Jenny Bailey, a prostitute who was murdered seven months ago – exactly the same time as a bulk order of the underwear used to dress the dead men was placed.

At the home of Jenny’s sister Melanie, Colby and Nikki find a shrine to the dead woman. Tracing her car to a nearby hotel, the agents suspect that Melanie is about to strike again. They locate her in the hotel bar, but she remains unrepentant and refuses to reveal the identity of her accomplice. “We have DNA evidence – it’s all over,” David tells her. “No, it’s not over,” says an amused Melanie, glancing at the clock. “It’s happening right now…”

Elsewhere this week, Colby and Nikki are involved in a horrifying high-speed car crash. Colby drags an unconscious Nikki from the wreckage seconds before the vehicle explodes, but as soon as she comes round, Nikki is determined to get back to work. “We were in striking distance of a serial killer last night – and I want him,” she says from her hospital bed. “I can’t be sidelined by some bruised ribs.” Meanwhile, Colby attempts to shrug off the flashbacks he has suffered since the incident.


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