Hulu 'Candy' Episode 5 Ending Explained: Why was Candy Montgomery acquitted in murder of Betty Gore?

Hulu 'Candy' Episode 5 Ending Explained: Why was Candy Montgomery acquitted in murder of Betty Gore?
Jessica Biel as Candace Montgomery in 'Candy' (Hulu)

Episode 5 titled 'The Fight' marked the end of Hulu's 'Candy', a five-episode miniseries that followed the trial of Texas woman Candace Montgomery (played by Jessica Biel) who was charged with the killing a woman named Betty Gore (Melanie Lynskey) on June 13, 1980. The finale offers the viewers a chance to listen to the story from Candy's perspective. Prior to the trial, Justin Timberlake's Sheriff Steve Deffibaugh walks the authorities through the murder, with a version that more or less coincides with the version Candy provides a rather bloody detail of.

Deffibaugh decides the cause of bruises on Candy's legs is a result of the ax coming down hard and hitting her legs. She also took a shower post the murder and made rather a shabby attempt to clean up the gory mess. She walked out even as the baby cried for 13 hours. Add to this the evidence in the form of her hair, fingerprint, and blood, she was as guilty as it could get. The officers hoped she would plead self-defense since she couldn't win.


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Melanie Lynskey as Betty Gore in 'Candy' (Hulu)

Hulu's 'Candy' Ending Explained: Why was Candy acquitted in the murder of Betty Gore?

The trial starts with Candy's act garnering divided responses from the townsfolk. Sherry (Jessie Mueller) strongly believes that Candy would never commit the heinous act and watches as her friend is greeted by jeers and remarks when she arrives at the courtroom. The judge later adds to the drama by slapping Don Crowder, Candy's attorney, fines and jail time— a plotline that forms a rather interesting part of the finale. Providing a more intriguing twist is Allan Gore's (Pablo Schreiber) comments on the stand. It appeared that he actually supported Candy over Betty and that perhaps may have worked in the defendant's favor.

There's also the subtle hint that Allan had moved on when he quietly kisses Elaine (Jamie Anne Allman) as shown at the start of the episode. This pretty much suggests less water in the case. His comments included his description of his current relationship with Candy as "friendly" leaving Betty's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Bob Pomeroy (Rick Espaillat and Annie Cook) disgusted. As the trial gets deeper, Crowder questions Deffibaugh and comes to a conclusion that there was no physical evidence of Betty picking the ax first to attack Candy.

Hypnosis is looked at to further add meat to the case when the doctors use it on Candy to determine the events on June 13. Crowder finally reveals that Candy indeed murdered Betty, and it was more of a dissociative reaction — one that actually stemmed from her being suppressed and controlled since her childhood. Candy relives the time her mother would 'shush' her even when she was in distress. The family and Crowder convince her to take the stand, and she does so by narrating the events of the fateful day.

June 13, 1980 | 10 am: Candy arrives at Betty's house to pick up Christina's swimsuit and some peppermints. A rather annoyed and flummoxed Betty just follows her around the house as Candy explains her new business venture with Sherry and also plays with Chito, the Gores' dog. When they do eventually come into the living room, Bety confronts Candy about her affair with Allan, and gets the response that it was "a long time ago". Betty then walked into the utility room and came back, with an ax threatening Candy never to see her husband again. 

Jessica Biel as Candy Montgomery in 'Candy' (Hulu)


Soon after, Candy went to pick up the swimsuit from the washer while Betty brought in the mints and the towel. Looking at how upset she was, Candy pats her arm and offers an apology, only to be pushed into the utility room and told “I’ve got to kill you.” A fight ensues and the baby's cries are heard, at which Betty shushes Candy. The trigger reaction sees Candy grab hold of the ax and butcher Betty to death. 

The twists don't end there as Candy was asked if she had any offers before or after Allan, and she admits she was with another man briefly in 1970 and refuses to divulge the name of the person. It does flummox her husband Pat (Timothy Simon) and it is revealed that in the aftermath of the case, she and Pat divorced after four years. Allan married Elaine shortly after, and six years after the trial, Crowder ran for governor of Texas. Meanwhile, Candy relocated, changed her name, and began a career as a mental health counselor.

Quite simply, the series tells the story from Candy's perspective, meaning the only thing that goes out for Betty is sympathy. Per a story on Grunge, Alice Doherty Rowley, one of the jurors, told The Dallas Morning News that the jury was not preoccupied with the alleged number of times Betty was wounded. "We determined it never had a bearing on the verdict at all — whether it was one gunshot or 1,000 whacks," she said. It is evident the jurors took her dissociative reaction into account

Clearly, the fact that Candy had marriage issues was distinctly seen and the lesson was learned the hard way, Infidelity comes at a cost. 'Candy' does well to provide a quick moral science lesson while also dishing out one of the more intriguing pieces of content in 2022.

'Candy' is available for streaming on Hulu.

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