As the central characters on “Turn” move farther and farther from one another, the web of intrigue on AMC’s freshman Revolutionary War spy drama spins bigger and bigger.
In episode 6, the identity of “Mr. Culpeper” is born. General George Washington sees the significance of having Abe Woodhull as a spy — and of having Benjamin Tallmadge as the leader of the spy ring. The main issue with Ben is that General Scott is so against his ways, which gets remedied when Ben proves his worth to Washington and argues his case for both protecting his men and keeping the circle of trust strong between the intelligence agents.
Washington promotes Ben to major and has him replace Scott as the head of intelligence. But “Mr. Culpeper” proves that Ben is still very green when it comes to spying. He didn’t have Abe take on a fake identity, he let his agents transfer information in person and he didn’t have them code their messages. That’s where new character Nathaniel Sackett comes into play; he’s an expert on spying who likely will be working closely with Ben going forward.
Little do these men know that while they’re working on the logistics of their spy ring, the key component in it is close to being killed. On his solo journey to New York to sell hogs, Abe is overtaken by a patriot who had been living on his own in the woods for months and was separated from the rebel army. He had gone so crazy that he was trying to take Abe’s identity to masquerade his way into New York City, and threatened Abe with flaying if he didn’t comply.
Fortunately Abe is rescued before he loses his life. But his journey to New York is stalled, and he is sent back to Setauket. There he will reunite with Anna — but also with Simcoe, who John Andre sent back to Setauket after he infuriated him at dinner. Simcoe had been returned to the Royal army in an exchange between the two militaries, but it didn’t take long for his brutality to show through.
Sackett had been sending his own spies into the British army, but the Lieutenant Tarrance who audiences are introduced to in “Mr. Culpeper” proves that Sackett’s agents aren’t quite good enough. Andre realizes that Tarrance is a fraud when he eats with the wrong fork and knife etiquette for British citizens. But while Andre quickly comes up with a way to use Tarrance to his advantage, Simcoe also notices and kills the man at the dinner table.
If anyone needed any proof Simcoe is a psychotic monster, this is it. Even Andre is thrown off by the move, explaining that he planned to use Tarrance as a double agent. Simcoe is sent back to Setauket for Anna, which Abigail overhears and likely dreads for her former mistress. Fortunately, Andre seems to have a soft spot for Abigail, and that could be used to her advantage.
Her plan with Anna was for her to send back information about Andre to Setauket, and he gives her the perfect opportunity when he offers to send a birthday gift to her son. But will she turn to be an ally of Andre, or use this situation to her advantage as a spy? She could be the pivotal link in the chain Ben is creating.
Meanwhile, Robert Rodgers finds out a bit more information about Ben Tallmadge: His brother Samuel is in a prison ship. He also finds a potential asset in Jordan, the slave who has his eyes set on Abigail. He is training Jordan to be a raider, which is a recipe for disaster for both Abigail and the rebels in Setauket.