‘Roswell, New Mexico’ Season 1 Episode 3 Recap: “Tearin’ Up My Heart”

Roswell, New Mexico Season 1 Episode 3
Jeanine Mason as Liz and Nathan Dean Parsons as Max in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 1 episode 3 (Photo: John Golden Britt © 2019 The CW Network)

The CW’s Roswell, New Mexico season one episode two concluded with Liz believing Max likely killed her sister, Rosa. Episode two airing on January 29, 2019 opens with Liz (Jeanine Mason) approaching the investigation of her sister’s death from a scientific point of view. She’s determined to follow the evidence wherever it leads her, but Max is number one on her list of suspects.

Liz pays a visit to Max (Nathan Parsons) on the pretext she wants to help him get over feeling sick since he healed her. His heart races as she examines him and while she stares at his lips, she doesn’t move in for a kiss. Neither does Max.

Elsewhere, Kyle (Michael Trevino) is out for a run/secret meeting with Master Sergeant Jesse Manes (Trevor St. John). Kyle believes that since Liz is still alive, aliens might not be the enemy. Kyle’s not really into this whole top-secret operation to expose the aliens among them and won’t disclose where he saw the alien handprint.

Liz has Max hooked up to a monitor and sits behind her trusty microscope assessing his healing capabilities. She begins asking a series of questions and Max shuts her down, fully aware of what an interrogation looks like. Liz explains she’s just trying to figure out his ability to release electricity and why they leave handprints, as Max grows increasingly uncomfortable. His heart rate speeds up as Liz continues to probe his alien powers. She knows he can heal with electricity but asks if he can harm with it. Instead of answering, he accidentally injures her arm as the monitor goes up in a puff of smoke.

Before they can put away the equipment, Isobel (Lily Cowles) barges in and discovers what her brother’s been up to. After Liz leaves, she lays into him about playing alien autopsy after she told him she would help him figure out what’s happening.

Isobel punishes her brother with the news that Liz and Kyle hooked up the day after he saved her life. “Your handprint was still on her chest,” says Isobel in a taunting voice. Max becomes angry and the siblings argue over relationships and lies. He even throws in her face the fact her husband doesn’t even know they’re aliens.

Isobel reminds him why Liz is gathering data.

Kyle bandages Liz’s arm and they try and figure out their next step. Is Max capable of murder? Liz reminds Kyle she had to provoke an angry reaction from Max in order for him to use his power. She wonders what Rosa might have done that caused Max to become angry enough to kill her.

Spotting one of Rosa’s books with a heart symbol, Liz opens it to find a baggie of drugs. It’s not a clue and Liz is frustrated. She wants a motive for her sister’s murder before she makes Max’s secret public.

Meanwhile, Michael (Michael Vlamis) and Alex Manes (Tyler Blackburn) are spending a little time in bed. They’re interrupted by Isobel who arrives at Michael’s trailer with bagels. Alex doesn’t want to be seen in Michael’s place and Michael leaves, upset.

Isobel reveals Liz is examining Max, and Michael realizes that Liz – a biomedical engineer – is going to be able to dismantle him. Isobel thinks it’s important they get Liz away from Max.

Liz continues her investigation by visiting Maria (Heather Hemmens) at the bar. She shows her the weed she found in her sister’s book and asks if there are any other little secrets of Rosa’s that Maria knows about. Maria points out the ‘no hunting’ sign and suggests Liz look behind it. Sure enough, there’s a CD sleeve with a series of ‘90s song titles.

Liz, who obviously should have been a detective, quickly figures out the song titles are actually clues to other hiding places. Maria already knew that but didn’t want to invade Rosa’s privacy. Liz is fine with doing just that, and Maria goes along for the ride. Next stop: the bridge.

Over at the sheriff’s office, it’s not all about police work. Cam (Riley Voelkel) drops a book on Max’s desk and it’s a first edition. He gets all flirty and asks her out on a date, which totally shocks Cam as she thought they were basically just on booty call terms. She agrees to a date at the drive-in, flirting back.

Kyle visits his mom, a sheriff, and steals a key from her keychain.

Liz and Maria make it to the bridge and Liz finds a loose rock. Behind it is a lunch box with a spray can and a note that reads:

“Dear Rosa,

You will never be alone.


Maria knows Ophiuchus is the 13th sign of the Zodiac, but that designation is controversial. Liz ties some clues together and realizes “a fraudulent zodiac” Rosa had written on her hand when she died might actually refer to Ophiuchus. Liz figures out Maria’s hiding something and she admits she saw Rosa sneaking out of the house to meet someone the week she died. But, Maria doesn’t know who she was seeing.

The next song title – “A Small Town Saturday Night” – leads them to the drive-in.

Coincidentally, the drive-in is hosting a fundraiser for veterans and screening Mars Attacks. Isobel and Michael are there, and apparently Isobel’s plan to get Liz away from her brother is to “mind warp” her. Michael had already suggested doing that but now Isobel’s ready to carry out the plan.

Isobel’s husband, Noah (Karan Oberoi), arrives at the drive-in and Isobel switches into loving wife mode. Michael prepares to leave after fixing the projector, but Alex convinces him to hang around for the movie. Michael agrees even though he hates how the film ends. (Spoiler alert: the aliens die.)

Kyle’s on a mission of his own. He enters the sheriff’s office and uses the key to open a drawer containing drawings and letters. After snapping photos, he locks the drawer and leaves. Max is right outside the building and grabs Kyle by the collar, demanding to know why he was sneaking around the file room. Kyle claims he was just stopping by to visit his mom, but Max is still angry. When Kyle brings up the Wild Pony parking lot (referencing his hook-up with Liz), a light on the side of the building sparks and fizzles. Kyle stares at it and then Max asks if he wants to be punched. Before the action can escalate, Cam shows up for her date.

Max pushes past Kyle, deliberately shouldering him as he takes off with Cam.

Over at the drive-in, it’s finally dark but the movie’s still not on. Instead, the veterans and their families are having a good time drinking, eating, and relaxing. Alex and his dad, the master sergeant, have a brief but tense discussion about his sexual preferences just as Isobel takes the stage and welcomes everyone to the third annual fundraiser for the town’s veterans.

Isobel notices Liz and Maria have arrived and doesn’t seem pleased with their presence.

Maria wonders why they’re at the drive-in and Liz says she’s spying on Max and his date. “Tall blondes are totally not his type,” says Liz. Maria laughs and wants junk food, if they’re going to continue stalking Max.

Suddenly, Isobel makes her move. The drive-in falls silent and people appear frozen in place. She tells Liz she needs her to do something, but as Liz turns toward her, she’s shocked to see Rosa rather than Liz staring at her.

Rosa asks, “Why are you being like this? I thought we were friends.” It’s once again Liz standing in front of her and Isobel tells her it’s time to leave town permanently. Liz says she can’t leave, and Isobel demands to know why. Liz replies, “Max.”

The scene unfreezes and Isobel is obviously disturbed by what just happened.

Maria returns with her corn dog and with a new idea about what Rosa could have meant by “Small Town Saturday Night.” It’s not the drive-in.

Roswell, New Mexico Season 1 Episode 3 Recap
Michael Vlamis as Michael in ‘Roswell, New Mexico’ season 1 episode 3 (Photo: Cathy Kanavy © 2019 The CW Network)

Michael catches Isobel vomiting and she admits she underestimated Liz. She confesses she kept having flashes of Rosa even though Liz was in front of her. She could feel what Liz was feeling, and she didn’t expect the connection between Liz and Max to run so deep.

Speak of the devil, Max walks up as Isobel is explaining what she felt. Michael leaves his brother and sister to have it out, and Max admits that maybe he and Liz aren’t meant to be. He thinks maybe he’ll see what evolves between him and Cam.

Liz and Maria make it to the roof of the Crash Down Café. Maria reveals she and Rosa used to sneak up there on Saturday night’s after Liz fell asleep. They kick back, smoke some weed, and relax the way Rosa used to on the weekends. They catch up on what Liz missed while she was getting her biomed engineering degree. Then Liz tells Maria she left her fiancé three weeks ago because she couldn’t connect with him.

They stargaze and talk about Rosa’s sign – Pisces – and how they used to look for it in the stars. Liz stargazes for a minute and then spots an electrical box. Inside is a love letter.

Cam and Rebound Max are making out in his car at the drive-in when Liz appears out of nowhere. She pounds on the hood and demands to talk to Max. Max looks apologetically at Cam before following Liz.

Liz hands him the love letter and reveals she knows he was sleeping with Rosa. The letter’s signed by Max.

Liz angrily reads portions of the letter, upset Max slept with her sister. Max explains her wrote the letter for her, not Rosa. Liz points out that he wrote “you touched my lips and I stopped breathing for a week” but they never kissed in high school. Max reminds her that he had hot sauce on his lips for three hours and no one told him. She touched his lips with her thumb to wipe it off. (Max, could you be any more adorable?)

Max thinks Rosa must have found the letter, but now Liz is no longer worried about it. She admits she knows he saw Rosa the night she died. He lied about it and she knows her sister was murdered by an alien. “Was it you, Max?” asks Liz. Max is momentarily rendered speechless.

Liz lets it all out, saying everything about Rosa and the death of the two girls was a lie. Max confirms he did see Rosa on the night she died. That night when he and Liz returned from the desert, he dropped her off, sat in the gazebo and wrote the love letter. He then slipped it under the windshield wiper of her car. Rosa saw him and was drunk, high, and angry. She shoved him and told him to stay away from Liz.

He didn’t kill her. He drove away but he knew she was messed up. He blames himself for not going to the diner and stopping her or getting her dad. He didn’t tell Liz he saw Rosa that night because he knows she has enough painful memories. “After everything that we have been through, do you truly believe that I am capable of killing someone you love? Liz, I have loved you my entire life, including every single day that you were gone in the last decade,” confesses Max. (This is absolutely heartbreaking and Nathan Parsons is laying all the raw emotions on the line in this scene.)

Max again says he didn’t kill Rosa and asks Liz to leave the past in the past. He walks away as Liz clutches the love letter.

Meanwhile, Kyle’s searching the drive-in for Liz when his mom confronts him. She demands the keys he stole, and he lies and says he did it because he’s in a love triangle with Max. He was just looking for dirt on his rival. Kyle’s mom admits she doesn’t like Liz’s family because they entered the country illegally while her own family had to struggle to legally stay in America. Kyle thinks his mom is a bigot, but she reminds him Rosa killed those girls and it tore the town apart. That almost cost Kyle’s dad the election because the town wanted to vote for a white man instead.

In another part of the drive-in parking lot, Alex is breaking up with Michael. He doesn’t want to be with a criminal, but Michael thinks Alex is just looking for an excuse to walk away.

Isobel makes it home and she’s happy to see her husband but seems conflicted. He wants to know how her night went and Isobel becomes emotional. She’s on the verge of tears as she talks about Max, who is pretty much the center of her universe. Noah understands that relationship and is sympathetic when she says Max is in love and the woman loves him back. He also knows she doesn’t want her brother to be unhappy. Isobel admits Max might have been unhappy for quite a while now and she didn’t realize it. She blames herself, saying it was her fault.

Noah asks her to stop worrying about how unhappy Max is and instead let him worry about how happy she is. He’s set up a romantic dinner complete with The Land Before Time which is apparently her favorite movie. Max clued him in she might need a little extra picking up that night.

Noah proves he’s in the running for Best Husband Ever by telling her she’s his person and always has been.

Over at the Wild Pony, Maria and Liz drink and discuss the night’s events. Liz fills her in on the fact Rosa took the letter to keep her away from Max. Maria wonders why since Max is “harmless,” and Liz responds by admitting Max says he loves her. Still, she doesn’t trust him.

Manes summons Kyle, but Kyle’s done being Manes’ lapdog. Kyle knows Manes lied about how close he was with his dead father, and that Manes never even bothered to visit him in the hospital when he was sick. Kyle believes in the American dream and in law and order, including that people are innocent until proven guilty. He refuses to turn over the name of the person who had the handprint, but he does give Manes the copies of the letters his dad wrote about his alien investigation while he was dying. They’re now even and Kyle’s out of this alien conspiracy madness.

The episode ends with a highly emotional Max unable to get Isobel to pick up the phone. He leaves a message for Michael to come to his place and then heads outside. He pounds his fists into the dirt, sending ripples toward the town. As they reach the town, the power goes out in Roswell.

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