Tonight’s CSI begins with a crazy woman at the police department dressed head-to-toe in aluminum foil, spewing her theory of time and space. She’s actually more entertaining than a lot of string theorists that I know, and as an former physicist, I know plenty. She says, “The invasion is tonight.” Apparently, she’s a regular at the station, surfacing nearly every night to file random complaints.
Next some other officers examine a dead deer. It seems that a very drunk man (like, BAC-of-2.8-drunk) shot the deer with a crossbow. The police interrogate him, but he tries to make a break for. He runs out into the hallway, crashing through a window, and the officers follow him into the room where Foil Lady is. The man bumps into Foil Lady, just as a cop sprays him with pepper spray and shoots him with a stun gun. The only thing is, as soon as he does, the guy bursts into flames and dies. Foil Lady says, “Now do you believe me?” It’s getting curiouser and curiouser.
The CSI team investigates the scene at the police station. They speculate that his clothes might have been covered in alcohol since he was so drunk, which is why he burst into flames. Warrick (Gary Dourdan) looks through the stuff the dead guy left behind in his truck, and finds a bottle of moonshine, which is 95 percent alcohol. He and the rest of the team try to simulate the bursting into flames to no avail.
Thinking that Foil Lady’s foil outfit may have transferred some volatile substance onto him, the CSIs go out to look for her. Unfortunately, she’s dead. They find her face-down in the road, where a truck driver, temporarily blinded by a bright flash, struck and killed her. The CSIs find a cracked butane lighter and 200 hundred bucks in cash on her. And oh yeah, her face is bleeding green blood.
A couple of blocks away, another victim, this time a man, is found with green blood. He has ear plugs in his ears and three pairs of sunglasses on, and looks to have been killed by blunt force trauma to the head.
Back at the CSI lab, the investigators explain that sulfur-containing compounds could turn normal blood green. According to the GC-Mass spec, there indeed is a lot of sulfur in all of the blood.
There’s new footage of the Spontaneous Combustion Guy. The CSIs learn that the officer used a different kind of pepper spray, one containing butane which is highly volatile. Sure enough, when they test out the butane-spray plus stun gun combo, the dummy bursts into flames.
The CSIs find a lead pipe near the second green-blooded victim (named Wayne Connor) that has Wayne’s blood on one end, and on the other end, green blood from an unknown donor. They also find that both Foil Lady and Wayne both had extremely high levels of a migraine drug called thiocyte, which has enough sulfur in it to turn human blood green.
Willows (Marg Helgenberger) and the team get called out to a nearby home in which a couple in their late 60s, the Martins, were found dead in their sleep. There isn’t any evidence that it was a suicide or an accidental drug overdose or anything. Suspicious. The backyard is riddled with holes from ground squirrels, and also a tombstone for the Martins’ family cat, Schrodinger. Geddit? Geddit? Schrodinger’s cat. I wonder if this will be connected to Foil Lady’s string theory.
The print from the lead pipe leads to a man named David Bohr. Oh golly, the physics references are dropping like anvils. Bohr is in a dark, cluttered basement, clearly distressed by the light from the CSIs flashlights. He claims not to have killed Wayne Connor. But the really curious thing is that as soon as Bohr is exposed to sunlight, he starts seizing. His head begins to rupture, and he bleeds green blood. The investigators find huge quantities of thiocyte, literature on migraines and work orders for rodent removal. So the victims with green blood are connected to the Martins! What are the odds?
Bohr’s autopsy reveals that all of his organs are varying shades of green, from avocado to seafoam. He also had a humungus brain tumor, which explains the migraines and the brain ruptures.
A disturbing autopsy of the dead squirrels from the Martins’ backyard reveals cyanide crystals in the squirrels’ stomachs, and a tox screen of the Martins shows that they died of cyanide poisoning. Cyanide is easily procured by jewelry-makers, just like the Martins’ next-door-neighbor!
Sure enough, she confesses to using potassium cyanide to kill the ground squirrels and possibly Schrodinger the cat. Curiously, she also says that the deer hunter, Spontaneous Combustion Guy, was her ex-boyfriend. A quick check of the Martins’ bedroom reveals evidence of combustion. The fire started in the older rug underneath the newer one. Some old rugs contain polyvinyl chloride as a flame retardant, so when the fire started, the chemical produced hydrogen cyanide gas, which is what killed the Martins. A-ha!
But what started the fire? Willows makes Hodges (Wallace Langham) crawl underneath the house. and he sees a dead ground squirrel that chewed on some electrical wiring. Everything was a coincidence!
So, the jewelry-maker used cyanide to kill the squirrels in her backyard, which also killed her neighbors’ cat. One of her poisoned squirrels chewed on wire which caused a fire, which created some hydrogen cyanide gas, which killed the neighbors. The man hired by the neighbors to humanely deal with their rodent problem had a tumor, for which he was incorrectly self-medicating with thiocyte, and selling tons of it to Foil Lady and Wayne Connor, turning all of their blood green. Bohr probably killed Connor because he was supposed to get 200 bucks from Foil Lady, who couldn’t give it to him because she had just been hit by a truck. Foil Lady was the last person that Spontaneous Combustion Guy touched before he burst to flames. And he burst to flames because he killed a deer and ran away from the police while being interrogated for it. And maybe he killed the deer because he was upset about breaking up with the jewelry-maker, and the circle is complete. Actually, that’s not all. As Gil Grissom (William Petersen) teaches us, everything is all connected to physics too. He gives a mini lesson on string theory, the theory of everything, to explain why coincidences like these are not so unusual.
-Debbie Chang, BuddyTV Staff Writer
(Image courtesy of CBS)