Question: What exactly is going on between Danny and his mother?
Karen Desai is a very intriguing character. She vacillates wildly between being cool, calm and in control and seeming like she’s barely keeping a handle on things. One of the most interesting aspects of her character however, is her relationship with Danny, which is strained to say the least.
Danny and Karen have an extremely interesting relationship, one that’s hard to completely understand at this point in the show. Just the way he says the word ‘mother’ sounds pointed and he’s definitely not very open with her (for instance, he’s much more communicative to Jo, even though his mother seems to be trying very hard to support him). When she tells him she was only trying to protect him, he yelled at her that he doesn’t need protection. He keeps pushing her away. When she asked about the photographs, he said not now and walked off, while whenever Jo demands answers he stays and tries to talk things through with her.
Danny has implied in the past Karen was more concerned with appearances and status then what’s best for him. So the strain in their relationship could just be chalked up to that and the fact that Danny’s been away for five years and living with his parent at this point is hard and he doesn’t exactly know how to act around her. After all, he is sometimes fairly nice to her and is polite as long as the conversation stays general.
But there are a couple of things that raises questions. The way in which he calls her ‘mother’, which can be compared to his calling her ‘mom’ in a much more natural voice in this week’s episode when he was trying to plead with her. I have read one theory in which someone suggested Karen might not be his real mother. This is a possibility since we don’t know exactly how long Danny’s family has lived in Green Grove, they could have moved there after he was born. Someone has also suggested that Tara was his real mother (the result of his Dad having an affair with Tara), which is a possibility though Tara was his father’s sister….which definitely would provide a pretty dark motive for murder and explain why the lie about Karen being his mother…however I’m not sure it’s a motive an eleven year old would really understand and so if that is the motive I don’t see Danny actually being guilty.
Which does lead to the cover-up possibility. Maybe Karen and Vikram both encouraged Danny to take the fall for one of them. Maybe Danny partially blames Karen’s need for good appearances for this, after all he certainly seems resentful of her past fondness for status.
On the couple of occasions Karen and Danny have talked about Tara, it’s seemed just a little off. For example it seems perfectly natural and understandable, that Danny would want to get rid of any photos of the woman he murdered. And yet Karen seemed to find it so bizarre that he had removed them all. And while he has talked about ‘his fault’ for what happened and ‘what he’s done’, he has yet to say point blank to her that he killed or murdered Tara.
Whatever is going on however, I get the strong impression that there’s at least some secret that Danny and his mother share. And I wouldn’t be surprised if the importance she used to place in appearances and status likely escalated events and contributed to what happened to the aunt (whether it was her turning a blind eye or hiding the truth).
What do you think?