|“||Do as you're told. The Professor will be watching.||”|
— The Professor to the Perfectionists
The Professor is the anonymous person responsible for confronting, pushing, and ultimately murdering Nolan Hotchkiss on the roof of Thorne Hall. They began sending the perfectionists threats shortly after Nolan's death. Their most notable message was forcing the rat within the group to expose themselves.
In "Lost and Found", he dressed up in a contorted pig costume to scare Ava and Dylan in the sewer drains beneath Beacon Heights. It was only after this incident that Dylan and Ava gave him the temporary nickname, "pigman".
He revealed his alias in "Enter the Professor" when he made his first power move against the group.
Late one night, Nolan requested that an unknown person meet him on on the roof of Thorne Hall. When the person arrived, Nolan assured them that the roof was the safest place to meet. He then apologized for his past actions toward them. He explained that time that was running out and it wasn't just about him anymore. He confessed that his sister, Taylor Hotchkiss, was alive and that they both needed the person's help. The figure seemingly rushed toward him, which caused Nolan to look surprised and fearful. Nolan was subsequently pushed off as a result and impaled by the spiked gates below. His body was discovered later in the evening by campus security.
Ava joined Caitlin and Dylan at Nolan's memorial that night. Dylan informed Ava that he and Caitlin were unable to retrieve Nolan's stash of secrets because someone else already secured them. As they talked about Nolan potentially having something on Ava, a low, hostile whisper was heard saying, "it's just like you imagined it". The voice was only heard by the Perfectionists.
The Professor sent an anonymous photo to Caitlin of her mother having an affair with another man.
Alison reveals to Taylor that she was supposed to meet Nolan on the roof of Thorne Hall. Taylor reveals that whoever killed Nolan might be the same person who tried to kill her. The Professor later ran Caitlin over with a car.
Ava and Dylan were on the darkened streets of Beacon Heights searching for the sewer entrance that would lead them to Mason's now-lost phone. Dylan spotted a pink balloon floating next to the sewer and was distracted by the weirdness of it. In the meantime, Ava leaned over in an attempt to see the phone and fell into the drains. She let out a scream that alerted Dylan to her danger.
Dylan went into the sewer after her armed with a flashlight. Upon locating her, she warned him that there was something down there with them. Dylan asked if it was something or someone, to which Ava replied that she wasn't sure. From the shadows behind her emerged a large figure dressed in a pig costume. A terrified Dylan yelled out in fear which was followed by Ava's screams. They ran off through the sewers as the silhouette of the figure loomed behind them.
The duo didn't stop running until they were clear of the sewers. They tried to figure out what it was, to which Dylan commented that it was a man dressed as a pig. The costume had a distorted face paired with bulging eyes, which he mentioned would haunt his dreams forever.
At the hospital that night, Ava called them "The Pigman", which Dylan stated didn't sound nearly as frightening as it was. He then deduced that the person tormenting them with their secrets wasn't Nolan's killer. Instead, it was someone who thought that the Perfs killed Nolan and wanted to punish them for it. They agreed that Dana Booker seemed like the most plausible suspect since Mason Gregory's name was previously cleared.
The Perfectionists, joined by Mona and Alison, each received letters inviting them to join the Crimson Society. They gathered in a seemingly abandoned area, where chairs and other paraphernalia were set up. The flat-screen television buzzed on and spoke to them in a robotic voice. It told them to please take their seats, and the group realized that there were two empty chairs. The screen began to play footage of Jeremy's shooting that incriminated each of them, as they all pretended that Jeremy attacked Taylor. The television shows static again and the group scrambled to figure out where the footage came from, and if it was part of Beacon Guard. The camera above the TV turns on and shows live footage of the group on the television. It welcomes them to phase two of the experiment and revealed their motives and reasoning. When questioned, it reveals themselves as "the professor" and the true killer of Nolan Hotchkiss. While Jeremy may have been guilty of stalking Nolan, he wasn't a killer. Jeremy was also a member of Phase One of the experiment. Jeremy watched the group under the Professor's instruction to protect Caitlin. However, Jeremy served his purpose and he had to be removed the equation, which makes Caitlin upset as she doesn't know what he means. Ignoring Caitlin's question, the Professor warns them to do as their told because he will be watching. The TV shuts off, and Mona deducts that Phase One was surveilling the group and they promptly leave.
The group retreats to Taylor's RV as discuss her discovering that someone hijacked Beacon Guard to spy on people. They theorize about the professor's experiment and what he wants from them. As they are walking, Mona notices Taylor's RV light is on, making them think that Taylor returned from River-Well early. As they advance toward the RV, it explodes into flames with chunks of RV flying everywhere. Soon after, their phones ring with the caller ID saying it's themselves calling. They answer and the Professor tells them to do as they're told or face immediate incarceration.
The group returns to Alison's house to discuss their newest predicament. Ava, Caitlin, and Dylan agree to join Mona and Alison until they can unmask the Professor. They later realized that anything with a phone or laptop wasn't safe from the Professor. Their phones rang again and this time, only Dylan answered, promptly putting him on speaker. The professor's request was for each of them to reveal their worst fears. Mona realized that the next step would be forcing those fears to come true. Alison planned on exposing the Professors fears by designing her experiment and promptly switched her major to Psychology.
That night, each member of the group admitted their fears to a camera around campus. At the Crimson Cafe, a mysterious gloved figure sat at their computer watching the group admit their secrets. Zach Fortson, a server at the cafe, approached them and asked if they wanted more coffee, hinting they are employed at BHU.
|Suspect||Possible Motive(s) And Notes|
The Professor: It's just like you imagined it.
Scoreboard hacked by the Professor: I see a rat.
The Professor: Participation in the experiment is mandatory. Failure to follow instructions will result in your immediate incarceration.
The Professor: Welcome to phase two of the experiment. I've been watching you. And it's been informative. But now that you have given me proof that you are guilty of attempted murder, and conspiring to cover up the crime, I can take my experiment to the next level. Follow instructions if you wish to remain free.
- "The Professor" doesn't exist in the book series, and was created solely for the television adaptation.
- They are the first character to have their alias or name featured in an episode title.
- Nolan died the same way the Perfectionists discussed at their meeting in the woods - thrown off the roof of Thorne Hall and impaled on the gates. The Perfectionists heard what could have been someone rustling around near them, which spooked them. They left shortly after. It's possible the Professor was watching them, and that Mason Gregory, who they thought was spying on them, wasn't in the woods.
- Despite Nolan's past behavior to the perpetrator, Nolan seemed to trust them, especially with the information that Taylor was alive. This made the Professor killer the only other person that knew she was alive and was in hiding.
- Nolan's killer is very tech-savvy, as they were able to hack Alison's phone with a fake text from Nolan asking for her help. They are smart to a point where Mona says they can pin the murder on anyone of their choosing.
- This skill is perhaps one of the reasons Nolan sought their help into the investigation on Hotchkiss Technologies.
- In "Lost and Found" Dylan mentioned that the figure was wearing a distorted pig costume that had bulging eyes.
|Characters (The Perfectionists)|