Something happened to me. There's alien activity here, in Patience. I know it.Liv Baker to her husband John, "Alien Dinner Party"
Liv Baker is the sheriff's deputy of Mike Thompson in the village of Patience, Colorado. Something of a timid individual, she tends to be subsumed by Thompson's strong personality and has trouble speaking up for herself. Harry Vanderspeigle likens her to a pet rabbit that you yell at so much that its hair starts to fall out. Despite this, she can be powerful when she is able to actually stand up for herself and has a keen detective insight. She is well-liked for her sense of fairness and justice. Despite this, she still manages to get results because of the fact that people like her and therefore are willing to open up to her. Eventually, she resigns as a sheriff's deputy due to Thompson's continued ill treatment of her, despite her best efforts to help solve a murder case. Afterwards, Thompson comes to realize the error of his ways and apologizes to her in song, upon which she accepts his offer to resume her duties as deputy. Afterwards, the two begin working together more closely and he admits to her that her instincts are often on target, even going so far as to buy her a coffee-maker, though still claiming that it's for the whole office. As summer comes to Patience, the two continue to work together on a more comfortable basis, though Mike in some ways seems to revert back to his old behavior. Liv eventually confronts him about the matter and he reveals the truth of his past: that in Washington D.C., he lost his partner and long-time best friend, Jesse. To this day, he blames himself for the incident, revealing also his own fear that he will lose Baker as well. She assures him that no such thing will happen and that she is there for him.
A murder investigation
Baker accompanies Sheriff Thompson out to Harry Vanderspeigle's cabin to get Dr. Vanderspeigle to come into town with them, as the town doctor of Patience, Colorado, Sam Hodges, has been discovered murdered and he's the only other doctor in the area. Later, at the clinic, she reveals that she felt herself unable to handle the next-of-kin notification to the doctor's widow and just gave her Mayor Ben Hawthorne's number instead. Later, when she tries to play music while she and Thompson are staking out a crime scene, he turns it off, telling her he has her music and beatboxing while humming "Amazing Grace" at the same time.
When Asta Twelvetrees expresses suspicion of Hodge's widow, Baker informs her that they already investigated her and found her to have an alibi. Sheriff Thompson backs this up. As Baker watches the developing argument between Twelvetrees and Thompson with a worried expression on her face, Vanderspeigle likens her to a pet rabbit.
When a fisherman discovers a foot while trawling the local lake, Baker joins Thompson on a search of the lake, along with Mayor Hawthorne and his wife Kate searching in a separate vessel. When the mayor pleads seasickness, Baker suggests that they call off the search, saying that it's highly probable that the body has already washed up on shore and that they should search there. Thompson ignores her, resulting in the alien Harry Vanderspeigle finding the body, which is that of the human Vanderspeigle he killed and assumed the identity of. He is thus able to find the body and hide it in his freezer. When Thompson finally calls off the search, he and Baker are led to the alien's freezer by the police dog Cletus, but are thrown off by the alien's tactic of covering the body with packages labeled as meat products.
Thompson and Baker assess various pieces of potential evidence they dredged up from the lake. Baker is particularly interested by a doorknob and wants to log it as evidence. Thompson tells her off, stating that there are such things as houseboats and the doorknob could have been ripped off of one of those which sank. Baker is forced to ignore her hunch for the time being, despite the doorknob actually having originated from Vanderspeigle's cabin and being torn off by the alien. Later, she visits the local pub to try to drown her sorrows, telling the bartender D'Arcy Bloom that it's one of those days where you question whether your own existence is even worth anything. Bloom gives her a pep talk, telling her that she's the best cop that Patience has ever had. She continues, saying that she's the one cop that people are actually excited to see, because she treats everybody fairly and always does the right thing. She urges Baker to "stand up to that power trip." Back at the office, Baker again tries to direct Thompson's attention to the doorknob. He again brushes her off, but while his back is turned, she secretly logs the doorknob as evidence.
Thompson later discovers that Baker has created her own "murder board" regarding the Sam Hodges case, hidden in a closet of the sheriff's office. She explains to him her theory that she developed after they learned that Sam Hodges was diabetic: that Hodges could have been poisoned using his insulin injection, which would mean that the killer didn't need to be present at the time of his death. Although she believes that he will dismiss it as a stupid theory, he tells her that it's not stupid and told her "Good job." Glowing with pride, she celebrates together with Asta Twelvetrees, D'Arcy Bloom and Judy Cooper. She later joins Thompson in confronting a suspect at Patience's school, Richard Ferguson, going by the alias "The Pharmacist." When Ferguson bolts, Thompson pursues him in a foot chase, only for Baker to calculate his route and waylay him with a push-broom. Although Thompson seems impressed at first, he then reverts to his old behavior, chastising Baker for using a contraction when trying to read him his Miranda rights. When he calls her out the next day for a supposed lack of respect, it is the final straw for her and she resigns in irritation, pounding a burger that was intended to be a treat for the dog Cletus.
Baker later returns to collect certain personal belongings, but has Mayor Hawthorne do it so that she doesn't have to engage with Thompson directly. Thompson tells Hawthorne to tell her that he could see her, and she replies through Hawthorne to mind his business, as she is busy enjoying life. He replies that he's enjoying life even more, so much that he has little cartoon birds flying around his head. She replies that "cartoon birds" usually means that you're unconscious. Later, after receiving a tip-off from Dan Twelvetrees about his daughter Asta being missing, and learning that D'Arcy Bloom is also missing, Thompson visits an upscale local restaurant where he discovers Baker having lunch with John of the town's avalanche-control team. Both are shocked to learn about the two women being missing, given the storm that is approaching the town.
Following this incident, Sheriff Thompson visits Joe's Diner one morning and finds Deputy Baker having lunch with his father, Lewis. She asks if he has anything he wants to say to her, but when he turns the question back on her, she simply bids him a good day and leaves. The Sheriff then chews out his father for having lunch with her, saying that he was probably trash-talking him, but he replies that in fact she was mostly listening. He tells him that his relationship with Baker reminds him a lot of his own relationship with the Sheriff's deceased mother - that she would always challenge him and when he messed up, she wouldn't let him off the hook until he took steps to fix it. He then rises from the table, telling his son to order him a burger and that he will be right back. As he struggles to rise, Sheriff Thompson tells him it is okay to ask for help and he replies pointedly "Look who's talking."
Taking his father's words to heart, Sheriff Thompson returns to his office, where he considers the murder board he has made, then goes to the closet and pulls out Deputy Baker's much more complicated board. He begins to see certain connections and finally comes to a conclusion, arresting the widow Abigail Hodges for the murder. That evening, at The 59, Baker performs the song "Wind Beneath My Wings" during karaoke hour. To everyone's surprise, Sheriff Thompson enters the bar and begins singing along with her, the song becoming a duet. He gets down on his knees and holds out her deputy's badge. To everyone's delight, she takes it, declaring that she's a deputy again.
An improved relationship
Baker returns to work for Sheriff Thompson, but the two are now truly working together for the first time. She accompanies the sheriff in a visit to Harry Vanderspeigle's cabin, on a tip from D'Arcy Bloom of having sneaked into the cabin only to discover Vanderspeigle's dead body in the freezer. Bloom's tip, however, is undercut by the appearance of the live Harry Vanderspeigle. Baker accompanies Bloom down to the freezer where, sure enough, there is no dead body. Unknown to either of them, the body in question is actually that of the human Harry Vanderspeigle and the alien Vanderspeigle has moved it to a new location. Convinced that everyone is trying to gaslight her, Bloom puts up a fight, and Baker leaves it Thompson to wrestle her into the sheriff's car, not being good at physical confrontation. As he does so, she discovers a boot washed up on the edge of the lake and collects it as evidence. She later takes the boot to the Patience Health Clinic and asks Asta Twelvetrees to show her the foot that she had previously discovered to see if it's a match. Twelvetrees does so and in the process, seeing a mole on the foot, realizes that the alien Harry Vanderspeigle killed the human.
Later on, Liv Baker joins Sheriff Thompson in responding to a call from Mayor Hawthorne, reporting a break-in at his home. Upon arrival, however, the two discover that the mayor and his wife, Kate, have already fought off the intruders, keeping them from hurting their son Max and his friend, Sahar. The two are then disturbed when, in the aftermath, the husband and wife demonstrate vividly their affection for each other. Baker and Thompson regroup at the sheriff's office, where Thompson tells Baker that while he likes the mayhem that has been happening recently, he simply doesn't get how it all connects. He asks if it could possibly all be coincidence. She replies that she doesn't believe in them and he agrees that he doesn't either. He points out how the foot, the boot and doorknob all came from the same place, admitting that it definitely did not come from a houseboat and saying that they should go visit Dr. Vanderspeigle the next day and see if he has anything to add to what he's already told them.
Baker then spots something sitting on Thompson's desk, a Nespresso machine. Having expressed a desire for a coffee machine in the office before, she asks if it's for her. He claims to have picked up on sale and states that it's for the whole office. She, however, squeals in delight, hugging him and saying that he got it for her, that he agrees with her "doorknob instincts." He admits that she has decent doorknob instincts, but continues claim meekly that the coffee-maker is for the whole office, even as she insists repeatedly that he got it for her.
The dead-foot killer
Baker and Thompson turn their attention to Harry Vanderspeigle, realizing that the wrong person may have been arrested. They pay a visit to Vanderspeigle's cabin and come up with a scenario that is surprisingly close to what actually happened, though not realizing that the dead foot they're investigating actually belongs to the real Harry Vanderspeigle. When Baker asks Thompson if they should talk with Vanderspeigle, he tells her that he first wants to do a deep dive and try to figure out what makes him tick. Baker later discovers Thompson with two cups of coffee and wonders if one is for her, not realizing that he actually bought it in honor of his dead partner. However, Thompson makes things up afterwards by buying a coffee for her.
The two later return to Vanderspeigle's cabin, where they discover him with a wheelbarrow full of dirt. Sheriff Mike later gains the unexpected opportunity to get close to Vanderspeigle when Vanderspeigle joins the weekly poker game. Baker works outside, monitoring undercover on a wire. During the poker game, Thompson picks up the interesting tip that it's rumored that Vanderspeigle lost all of his money six years ago. He then tried to sell his cabin to the uncle of Nurse Ellen, but later unexpectedly backed out of the deal. Baker does some digging and discovers the realtor who was handling the transaction. She and Thompson go undercover and learn that Vanderspeigle had put the cabin on the market, only to unexpectedly turn around and pay off his debt in cash, half a million, one week later. Thompson finds this extremely shady, noting he himself only has $90,000 in the bank for emergencies. Baker, however, cannot sympathize, as she doesn't even have enough money for a new starter for her car.
The two continue their investigation and Baker receives a call from a contact at St. Helen's Hospital. The contact reveals that Dr. Vanderspeigle was disciplined for being found in a lab he wasn't supposed to be in and stored within the lab was Botulinum toxin. Based upon this, Thompson decides it's time to go talk with Dr. Vanderspeigle. Baker agrees, but not before first stopping to drop off a dress for dry cleaning. The two eventually proceed to Vanderspeigle's cabin, where they find Asta Twelvetrees and Vanderspeigle inside. They demand to be let in and are eventually admitted by Twelvetrees, but Vanderspeigle is nowhere to be seen. Twelvetrees suggests that maybe they come back later, but Thompson tells her that he'll arrest her if necessary. He steps forward, only to trip a loose floorboard and discover a cooler with Botulinum toxin. He and Baker then proceed to the basement, drawing their guns, only to discover, to their confusion, another Asta Twelvetrees. Upstairs, the alien Harry Vanderspeigle morphs out of Twelvetrees's form.
The two return upstairs, with Twelvetrees, where they discover Vanderspeigle. They try to place him under arrest only for him to climb up the walls and evade Thompson's gunfire. Thompson shouts that he's a werewolf, but Twelvetrees reveals that he is, in fact, an alien. Baker then comments that she always knew they existed. Vanderspeigle then returns to the ground, where he places his hands over Thompson and Bakers' heads and uses his powers to replace their visit there with a memory of meeting an Agent Fisher of the FBI who told them that the FBI was taking over the case and that Vanderspeigle wasn't the killer.
The next morning, Baker and Thompson greet Vanderspeigle and Twelvetrees cheerfully when they show up for breakfast at Joe's Diner. Harry's altered memories seem to have taken as they have no memory of investigating Vanderspeigle as the killer. Following this, Baker is invited to a "GN59," an alcohol fueled girls' night at the local watering hole, the 59. Following this, they head outside to an area they call the "yacht spot." When Baker's car breaks down while playing music, she tells them she has a battery charger in the car, but they mock her for having such a junk vehicle. When they point out that they now make new ones, she explains that her husband John has money set aside for a new riding mower. She says it's fair, since he makes more than she does. D'Arcy Bloom wonders how this can be so given that he does the same thing as her, which is tend bar. When they ask her when the last time is that she got a raise, she admits that she never has. They then raid town hall and discover the town budget, uncovering a pay gap between men and women, and confront Mayor Ben Hawthorne with this.
Following this, Baker is in the office one day when Sheriff Thompson arrives, bringing brings back her dress back from the dry-cleaners. She, however, has no memory of having dropped it off. When she asked if he brought it in for her, he tells her that he's not in the habit of carrying around women's clothing. She tells him that Judy Cooper has come to see him and when she plays off his attempts to flirt with him, Liv suggests that it might be fun for him to go out with her. She notes that all he does is work and take care of his father, asking him when the last time he had a date was. He tells her that he has people he can call.
Later, Baker comes with D'Arcy Bloom to a birthday dinner for Bloom's father. Bloom hopes that Baker will serve as a distraction for her controlling parents. The plan works at first, but falls apart when Baker observes Sheriff Thompson, who abandons the date he is having at the same restaurant. She goes out to try to comfort him, but he gets into his car and pulls away before she can say anything. Afterwards, she sits in her own car, listening to a recording which suggests that her memory loss is due to having been abducted by aliens.
Deputy Liv begins researching the missing day on her own, to the point of keeping a personal notebook trying to reconstruct the events of the day. When Sheriff Thompson asks her about it, she says that he has to admit that it's weird that the whole day's a blank. She asks if he remembers it and he admits that he doesn't, but points out that he can't even remember what he had for breakfast that morning. Later, she visits the grave-site of her Aunt Catherine, telling her that she was the only one she ever told about the UFO she saw as a child except for her husband, John, who thinks that she's crazy, but loves her anyway. She asks Catherine to give her a sign. Just then, Mayor Hawthorne and his son Max show up. She asks Max about the sketch that she had him make of the alien, but he tells her that he made all of it up and that aliens aren't real.
Convinced that something happened to her, Baker continues to do investigations into alien activity in Patience. This annoys Sheriff Thompson, who tells her to conduct such investigations on her own time. Things come to a head when he confronts Baker after she arrests a suspect that had been trying to assault him, even though he had told her to stay back. He tells her that this is how people get killed, but she is convinced that there is more going on. That evening, she calls Thompson out to a meeting on a bench in a local park. He asks if she's upset with him for what earlier in the day. He tries to justify his actions, but to his shock, she handcuffs him to the bench. She tells him it's not about him yelling, but about why he's yelling and how he's been acting weird all summer. She tells him that they're not leaving until he tells her what's going on. When he refuses to open up, she leaves, saying that it's a nice night for a frozen yogurt.
She eventually returns. She says that he told she could trust her gut when she's off duty and she's off duty right now and thinks that there's something going on with him. He finally opens up, telling her six years ago he lost his partner, Jesse, in Washington D.C. The man was more than just his partner, he was his childhood friend, but he made a decision that sent him to his death. He tells her that each year the anniversary comes around, it messes with his head. He tells her that he doesn't understand grief, that it just makes no sense to him and that he can't get past the emptiness. Baker tells him she's there for him, but he says that he can't do it, that he can't lose her, have something happen to her like it did to Jesse. She tells him that nothing will happen to her and that nothing will happen to him because she won't let it.
With their relationship repaired, Deputy Baker and Sheriff Thompson head out on a call to Asta Hodges's household. They discover that the man who called them there is upset that Asta is holding a yard sale, calling it a "murder sale." Sheriff Thompson sends the man on his way, angry at him for wasting police time and pointing out that Abigail is innocent until proven guilty. He then goes over to Abigail, offering to buy a cowboy hat, but Abigail is unwilling to part with it due to it reminding her of Sam. Thompson ultimately leaves with a set of mystery novels that Abigail gives to him for free. He asks Deputy Baker if Abigail looked to her like a guilty woman and Baker agrees that she seems more like a grieving widow.
That evening, Baker's husband John discovers her working late at the office. She reveals to him that she posted details about a UFO sighting in Patience to the Internet, only for people to mock it by turning it into an image of a donut, not even knowing that the person who posted it is a cop. Just then, she gets a summons from Sheriff Thompson and tells him that it's going to be a bit longer. She and Thompson then head to Sam Hodges's office. Sheriff Thompson explains that he's been reading the mystery novels and in them the protagonist would hide clues in the backings of paintings. He and Baker search the paintings and eventually discover what they're looking for: a list of names with the heading "Galvan/Powell Group."
Following this, Baker and Thompson attend a surprise party for Harry Vanderspeigle. Baker proves a hit at the party with her deviled eggs recipe that she stole from a grandmother, though it makes the guests gassy. She chats with Asta Twelvetrees, telling her that she a UFO during a camping trip that they took when they were kids. She asks Twelvetrees if she doesn't want to believe that there's something more out there. Twelvetress agrees, but says that there's no way that there could be alien activity in Patience given that they only just got a pizza place, deftly hiding the fact that she knows that the Harry Vanderspeigle they all know is an alien. Later, while sitting and talking with her husband, Deputy Baker experiences a vague vision of Vanderspeigle erasing her memory. She tells her husband that she knows there's alien activity in Patience and that she's going to contact the alien tracker.
- Liv Baker's actress Elizabeth Bowen was credited as a guest star in the first season of Resident Alien, but as of the second season is starring cast.
"Hey, I know the sheriff can seem kind of mean sometimes, but he's just a big teddy bear... with severe anger and control issues." - to Max Hawthorne regarding Sheriff Mike Thompson, "Homesick"
"Respect is not an entitlement. You can’t get it just by standing there asking for it. You earn it through your actions, Deputy, and quite frankly, I can tell you right now, punching burgers, that shit there ain't gonna cut it."
"Okay, well, how about this for an action? I quit. Does that cut it? I'll eat this tonight because it's not right to waste food!"
- Sheriff Mike Thompson and Deputy Liv Baker, resigning as a sheriff's deputy, "The Green Glow"
"You got me a coffee pod machine!"
"Oh, what are you doing? I got that for the whole office. What are you doing? Nope."
"You got it for me, and you agree with my doorknob instincts."
"You got decent doorknob instincts, all right? But this whole thing is for everybody. It ain't just for you."
- Sheriff Mike Thompson and Deputy Liv Baker, "Heroes of Patience"
"I knew they existed."
- Liv Baker upon Asta Twelvetrees telling her that Harry Vanderspeigle is an alien, "Girls' Night"
"Everyone loves you too."
"Yes, but it's only because I'm nice."
"You gave me a ticket once for locking my bike to a stop sign. You're not that nice."
- Asta Twelvetrees and Liv Baker, "Girls' Night"
"Nothing is gonna happen to me, okay? And nothing is going to happen to you because I won't let it."
- Liv Baker to Sheriff Mike Thompson, "An Alien in New York"