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‘The Diplomat’ Season 1: Story Recap And Ending, Explained

“The Diplomat,” the new series streaming on Alibi, revolves around the lives of British Consul Laura Simmonds and her colleague, Deputy Alba Ortiz, who use their skills to help distressed British nationals after they find themselves in trouble in the city.

Spoilers Ahead


A Man Is Murdered

The episode begins by showing us the local police officer interrogating a witness. A dead body has washed up on a beach in Catalonia. It is that of a young man named Jay Sutherland. The witness, a mournful young girl by the name of Amy Callaghan, tells Inspector Castells the details of the last time she saw Jay. They both were working a night shift at a party on a yacht owned by a company called ‘El Faro’. Jay was the bartender, and Amy had the job of serving drinks. She confesses that she and Jay had dabbled in narcotics on that day, and Jay had a couple of drinks as well. She further adds that Jay had asked her to come on a jet ski to enjoy the sea. She declined, but unfortunately for Jay, the outing proved fatal as he drowned.

Next, we are introduced to British Consul Laura Simmonds and her deputy, Alba Ortiz. A new consul general has been appointed, and he might visit the office soon, but Laura and Alba rush to the airport, as Jay was a British national, and his father, Colin, had arrived to identify the body and bid his son a final goodbye. He is first escorted to the police station to meet Inspector Castells. He is shown Jay’s belongings, but Colin brings up the case of the missing watch he gifted Jay on his 18th birthday. Castells offers a few probable explanations and tells Colin about the drugs present in Jay’s body, but a disbelieving and unconvinced Colin decides to identify Jay’s body, having made up his mind to explore the matter himself.

The new consul general, Sam Henderson, arrives back at the office as a replacement for the previous general, Mulgarry. A suave and dapper Sam, with a thick Irish accent, is hinted to be involved in something covert. He is seen getting into bed with a Barcelonian woman named Mariona, whose motives for being involved with Sam seem unclear. They both discuss the case of Jay’s death. Mariona calms Sam down and tells her about the witness who gave an apparently believable account of what happened. They plan a meeting later at the El Faro to discuss a “wedding” planned for the near future.

Sam arrives back at the office, where he is finally greeted by Laura and Alba. Laura briefs him about the rise in “knife crimes,” which adversely affect the tourists, but their biggest case remains that of Jay’s death. Sam asks Laura to speed up the process of sending Colin back home. Laura tells him about Colin’s apprehensions regarding a missing watch and the toxicology report. The El Faro’s owner Fabian Hartmann’s name pops up, as he was the owner of the yacht Jay worked on on the day of his death. Sam diverts everybody’s attention to having a small party themselves on the occasion of his first day as consul general, and they all agree.

Laura takes Colin to meet Castells again, this time to show him the jet ski Jay rode. Castells informs the doubtful Colin about the witness who confirmed Jay drinking alcohol and snorting cocaine on the day of his death. Colin inquires about the girl and is reminded by Castells not to interfere with the witness. Colin and Laura leave, but Castells has a doubt he keeps hidden from everybody else: the master key of the jet ski is missing, without which it couldn’t even have started, let alone been taken out to sea.

Colin shows up at El Faro at the same time Sam sets up his meeting with Mariona. Mariona is disturbed by the restaurant’s manager and is asked to meet Colin, who has come to El Faro looking for Jay’s missing watch. He finally bursts out in anger at his son’s tragic and mysterious death, and a scuffle ensues. Sam witnesses this from afar and later informs Laura about it and asks her to get him back home. Laura senses something off about Sam. The consuls have a small get-together while Castells informs Laura about the master key and requests that she keep quiet about it while he investigates the matter further.

El Faro owner Fabian Hartmann finally arrives in the picture and is briefed by Mariona, who is revealed to be his legal representative. Through their conversation, we find out that Amy’s testimony is a fabrication that she was forced to say in front of Castells. In reality, on the day of Jay’s death, he got into an altercation with some pretty evil men after he protested against Amy’s mistreatment by them. Castells arrives at the El Faro, looking for Amy, unaware of the fact that she has already left the city, taking with her a key possession: Jay’s Missing Watch.

Before Laura could advance further with Jay’s case, a completely new problem arose for her. A nanny arrives at the Miller household, comprising Seth, the husband, Izzy, the wife, and their two kids, and finds the husband’s head bashed in while the wife is found later in a delirious state at a church. The case is high-profile, so it becomes an immediate priority for Laura. The husband is taken to a hospital, and Castells interrogates the wife, Izzy. She admits the intake of narcotics but refutes the allegation of hitting her husband and, on the contrary, lists all the problems he has caused her. Castells interrogates Seth, but Seth hides behind the fact that he remembers nothing.

Laura takes extra pains and finds the nanny who reported the crime. After enquiring about the Miller household, Laura asks Alba to contact social services and find the Millers’ listing in their database. She figures out that Izzy and Seth are in a mutually destructive relationship, and Seth is hiding the fact that it was Izzy who hit her. The toxicity in the household is proving harmful for their young and impressionable kids.

Before she can tidy up this new case, a new autopsy report sheds some light on Jay’s death. Castells informs Colin about a possible wound on Jay’s wrist that couldn’t have been caused by the water or the buoy.

Laura sets up a meeting with Izzy and her father, Sir Gerald. Laura, filled with a sense of moral and professional responsibility, lays out the truth to Izzy and calls her out as Seth’s assailant, even though there is no proof. She suggests Izzy let her children stay with her father while she seeks professional help for her addiction issues. Laura goes out on a limb against the powerful Gerald, who could ruin her career, but after listening to her proposal, he sides with her.

After she wraps up the Miller case, she escorts Colin to witness Castells’s inspection of Hartmann’s yacht, where he searches for the jet ski’s missing master key. Laura breathes a temporary sigh of relief, having dispensed with her duties, but she receives a notice for a surprise vetting review.

A surprise call from Fabian Hartmann comes Laura’s way. He requests Laura go speak to a girl named Lola, who might know something about Jay’s death. While she goes to find new information, Alba handles the case of a British woman who gets robbed by a man after their one-night stand and is now being extorted in exchange for taking down her sex tape from pornographic sites he recorded on his mobile.

Lola tells Laura that her ex-boyfriend Dante might have killed Jay. Buying this story, Laura informs the police, and they arrest Dante, who confesses to killing Jay accidentally in an altercation. A watch is found in Dante’s apartment, and the police take it to be Jay’s missing watch, making it a credible confession. Colin has his doubts, but the case is done for the time being.

Meanwhile, Laura and Alba work together to catch Mateo, a serial extortionist who preys on the shame of middle-aged women. Laura works tirelessly, but her life seems out of balance. She thinks that Jay’s case has been resolved, but she still harbors a growing sense of melancholy in her life. She cancels her plan to go visit her boyfriend, Tom, citing the vetting review as her reason. Shackled by a sense of getting too rigid and bound by her work, she tries to break free and ends up getting involved with Fabian.

Sam meets Mariona and discusses a mysterious plan revolving around a man named Mckinley, whose success rests upon Mariona keeping Fabian in Barcelona for the upcoming “wedding.” Mariona asks Sam to relax as Jay’s murder investigation is dealt with. Mariona reveals that it was her plan to fabricate the story with Lola and her boyfriend lest the police poke their noses into Fabian’s affairs. She proceeds to inform Sam of the growing fondness between Laura and Fabian.

Laura finds herself even more distressed after Tom comes to stay on a surprise visit. She tries to hide her affair with Fabian, but things grow trickier as Tom starts to get himself acquainted with Laura’s colleagues at the consulate. Laura tries to gain distance by getting involved in a new case of a missing child. Meanwhile, Tom asks her to move with him to New York and start a new life there, stressing Laura even more.

Laura and Alba visit the anxious mother of the missing child and help locate her son. It turns out that the son was abducted by none other than his biological father, Nathan, who was caught while trying to flee at the airport. Laura speaks with Nathan and, after listening to his desire to be with his son, tries to help start a procedure for getting his son’s custody.


The Murder Case Reopens

Castells, noticing Laura’s tendency to help distressed fathers, offers her Jay’s watch (one found at Dante’s apartment) to be given to Colin as part of Jay’s belongings. Laura hands the watch over to Colin, but as expected, he immediately identifies it as a fake.

Colin and Laura visit Castells, and he agrees to re-interrogate Dante, Lola’s ex-boyfriend. Laura tells Sam about the reopening of Jay’s murder case. Sam, as expected, is taken aback and calls Mariona to sort things out. Mariona now figures that Castells will grow certain after his re-interrogation that someone tried to cover up Jay’s murder and tells Sam to make sure Laura no longer interacts with Castells as they make up for a deadly combination.

Dante is attacked overnight in his cell and sent into a coma right before his re-interrogation by Castells. Suspecting a leak, Castells visits Laura and asks if she told anybody about the fake watch. Meanwhile, Lola Alvarez makes a scene at Mariona’s office after receiving Dante’s news. The police arrive and take Mariona into custody, suspecting her of being the mastermind behind the cover-up.

Colin is pissed off at the state of affairs regarding his son’s death and begins following Fabian in hopes of uncovering some new information. Suspecting Laura will see him and Mariona connected in the cover-up, Fabian reaches out to her to clear his name. He tells her he had nothing to do with what happened to Dante and that he didn’t know about Lola lying to her about her boyfriend being Jay’s murderer. He sincerely begins to explain that Mariona did the cover-up herself because she apparently had to protect some of her dad’s friends who killed Jay on the yacht.

Two men get hold of Amy Callaghan, the only real witness in Jay’s case. Fabian had employed men of his own to locate her, but the two who reach her first turn out to be Castells’s officers. They bring her back to Barcelona. This news reaches Fabian, who realizes he is in a lot of trouble. More than him, we see Mariona harrowed by this news after getting released from custody. She calls Sam to meet in private. It is only here that we begin to understand the depth of Sam’s operations in Barcelona. It becomes clear he is on a mission to catch a terrorist by the name of Mckinley, who escaped Ireland and is expected to come to the “wedding” in Barcelona. Mariona becomes sick of being a mere instrument to help Sam with his covert assignment. Sam guarantees her security, but she threatens Sam, telling him she will go tell Laura the whole truth and get out of the hell of her dual existence.

Alba, Laura, and Carl help an elderly British couple in a new case. Meanwhile, Laura receives a message from Mariona instructing her to come to meet her later in the evening. She finishes her work and goes to meet Mariona, but Mariona is run over by a car before the two can meet at the rendezvous. She tragically dies on the spot. A shocked Laura visits Castells the following day, who gives her another upsetting news: Sam has used her powers as British Consul General and stopped the local police from interrogating her for the time being. Laura suspects Sam to be involved in something fishy.

A new case involving an influencer and her boyfriend pops up, but before Laura can look into that, she is confronted by Colin, who saw her with Fabian. Laura tries to explain the bad optics and reassures Colin that she is on his side, no matter how it looks. Sam comes back to the consulate after meeting his superior in Madrid and is immediately confronted by Laura as to why Amy has been kept completely underground, away from even the other officers such as Alba or even Carl. Sam refuses to answer her but later visits her apartment with a plan.

Sam offers to let Laura have Amy in exchange for making Fabian stay in Barcelona until Sam’s operation to catch McKinley is completed. Amy meets Colin and tells him what she saw on the night Jay lost his life. Meanwhile, Alba deals with the influencer and her pestering boyfriend but ends up getting stabbed by him. Laura goes on a mission of her own: to keep Fabian interested in her and not let him leave Barcelona, keeping her end of the deal made with Sam.

Fabian asks Laura what Amy told Castells. She confirms Fabian’s theory about Mariona’s father’s friends being involved in Jay’s murder. With suspicion finally off Fabian’s mind, he plans a meeting with a man named Peter Van Der Meer. Sam waits patiently for McKinley to arrive at this “wedding.” Yes! The wedding was the codename for the meeting involving the Dutch and Irish terrorists, with Fabian acting as a broker at a neutral venue in Barcelona. When Mckinley finally arrives, the police arrest both Peter and Mckinley on the spot.


‘The Diplomat’ Season 1: Ending

Amy is finally able to tell the truth. She tells Colin that Peter Van Der Meer was the man who tried to sexually assault her, to which Jay objected. A bruised Jay came into her cabin and told her that Fabian had tricked him and let Peter and his gang corner him. He went out of Amy’s cabin after hearing Peter come down. Amy secretly saw Fabian and Peter together after taking Jay away. Fabian did it to please Peter so as not to endanger the deal at the “wedding.” So, in all likelihood, Fabian betrayed Jay’s trust, who worked loyally under him, and it was Peter who delivered the fatal blow. Justice is served when Castells finally arrests Peter on the charge of murdering Jay. Sam’s operation is concluded when McKinley is nabbed. Amy gives Jay’s watch to Colin, and after having received closure, he forgives Amy, thanks Laura, and heads back home. Laura visits Alba in the hospital and hopes for her speedy recovery.