Revenge "Engagement" Review: Doesn't Anyone on This Show Use Condoms?

By Drusilla Moorhouse

May 06, 2013

Revenge S02E20: "Engagement"

Murder! Betrayal! Baby on board! The penultimate episode of Revenge's second season was positively electrifying—unless you happen to live in Emily Thorne's New York.

The biggest jaw-dropper was that Charlotte Grayson finally has an interesting storyline, because the misunderstood party girl is preggers! Those poor Porter boys generally don't have much to brag about, but their sperm sure are strong swimmers. So unless Charlotte hooked up with Emily's fo-bro, Declan is on track to be the Stowaway's latest baby daddy.

Oh, the irony. The world has only just learned about Victoria's secret firstborn son, and now she could be a meemaw. Even worse, her only "legitimate" child, Daniel, is re-engaged to Emily Thorne—and they're moving to Paris. Ooh-la-la!

"How repetitious," Vicky said drolly when our favorite mama grizzly heard about the nuptials. (At this point, she was unaware of her own daughter repeating her history.)  

Unlike his wife, Conrad was happy about his son's tidings, which would definitely boost his struggling gubernatorial campaign.

But not if Uncle Jack had anything to say about it: When Ashley downplayed his incriminating picture of Conrad meeting with his opponent's wife, Alison Stoddard, he shared it with Victoria. She returned the favor by telling him that Jack's kiss with Emily was the reason she called it quits with Daniel the first time.

So Jack swooped up Emily, they sailed off into the sunset together, and nothing else matters. Jamanda 4Evah, the end!  

No? Okay, maybe it didn't quite go down that way. Jack confronted Emily on her porch (where so much went down on the night of her re-engagement party), and she told him Amanda's baby bump spoiled their moment. Instead of softening, he stormed off because all these lies really made him mad. Grrr!

Aiden was mad, too—fightin' mad. Sword-fightin' mad, to be exact (the blackout wasn't the only thing this swashbuckling episode had in common with Revolution). And when Takeda challenged him to a duel, the student became the master: Aiden slayed his (and Emily's) mentor.

His method was apt, as Nolan observed before the duel: "It's a subzero world when your own sensei stabs you in the back."

But it was only figuratively speaking in Takeda's case: He told Daniel that Aiden's father was the baggage handler who put the bomb on Flight 197, and Danny Boy promptly fired him. But that wasn't the only line item on the revenge master's Big Apple to-do list: He'd learned that the Initiative was planning to strike again and vowed to take them down himself. (Oops.) Another factoid we learned before he fell on Aiden's sword: Takeda had other plans for Emily, and—unlike Aiden—she had no idea what his "true objective" was. Hmmm.

Aiden's objective, however, was to drain the Amanda Clarke Foundation account and bankrupt the Graysons—ASAP, because the now-former treasurer was about to lose his access. One hiccup: He needed the account info from the Falcon, so he persuaded Nolan to visit her in prison.

Edith didn't seem to mind her orange jumpsuit, because she was confident she'd be back in her hoodies and manga tees in no time. Carrion, she told Nolan, couldn't operate without her "magic touch," and the Initiative would surely find a way to free her if her nemesis didn't. She was clearly in a sharing mood, because she told Nolan that when Victoria's young son tried to find his birth mother, Victoria paid him $5 million to disappear. Edith also got her Gollum on, posing a riddle whose answer would lead to the Foundation account. (Her Street Fighter high score, obvi.)   

Emily, to her fury, arrived at Nolcorp too late to stop Aiden from transferring the money. Not only would the Graysons know he was responsible, but that he jumped the gun on her scheme to take them down.

No one was scheming harder than Victoria, though. She confronted Alison Stoddard and discovered that Alison was helping Conrad sabotage her own husband's campaign, because he had a heart condition that would prove fatal if he served another term. Then the first lady almost guaranteed a victory for Conrad by publicly revealing Governor Stoddard's health issues. So Jack played his second card for Victoria: the recording of Conrad basically ordering Amanda's hit.

Then: Boom boom, out went the lights! No one's playing Street Fighter now, because its top scorer, Nolan Leslie Ross, wrote a software program powerful enough to take down New York's entire power grid. Carrion worked!    

"Engagement" had more twists and turns than a roller-coaster... so why did it feel like the Jungle Cruise at Disneyland? Because no1curr about most of these characters. Aiden could die next week (and most people seem to be predicting that he will) and few would miss him. Jack Porter's sorry "scheming" took center stage, but animatronic hippos have more spirit than this sad sack. Charlotte? It's never been easy to sympathize with the poor little rich girl, even after she found out David Clarke was her father. The arrival of the Falcon has meant more screen time for Nolan, always a good thing, but it's hard to get excited about Edith when we just met her last week.

Can this season be saved? We'll find out in next week's "nail-biting, gut-wrenching, heart-stopping" two-hour season finale: Jack walks into a trap, someone exits in an ambulance, Charlotte cries, and Emily confesses… something, to someone!


– What is Takeda's "true objective"?

– Who's that ambulance for?

– Is Emily going to Amandize herself for Jack?

– Will Conrad win the election?

– Carrion happened. Now what?

– Why doesn't anyone in the Hamptons use birth control?

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  • o_ades Jul 22, 2013

    p.s. i heart aiden

  • o_ades Jul 22, 2013

    1) SWORDFIGHT?? 2) PREGNANCY?? 3) WHAT IS GOING ON?? i hate typing in full caps but omg. i hadn't watched revenge in so long because i've been putting it off due to waay too much focus - by which i mean any focus at all - on jack, declan and charlotte. if they killed all three off, i would be the happiest person on the planet. everytime jack appears on screen, i want to tear his, not my, hair out. anyway, if the finale isn't absolutely amazing, this might just be the last episode of revenge i watch. on to the next one!

  • Tadaia May 11, 2013

    Emily's tortured poor Jack long enough. He's had to deal with the loss of his babymama, deception and intimidating rich folk. He wants revenge and she wants revenge. Just tell him the truth, make love and pull him into the fold. They've dragged this out long enough. I think that Aiden would accept Emily leaving him for Jack before he would that moron Daniel.

  • KlementineOse May 07, 2013

    Sword fight was already kind of foolish, but when the lights went out... I just thought it was much too much. I mean, really? The city went black just like that? Revenge lost the element of believability (not that it is very much like real life)

  • Milaneh May 07, 2013

    It was a fun, mediocre episode (just like the entire season 2 was) but I was lost the moment Aidan and Takeda engaged into a samurai sword battle. It was a big what the friggin hell moment for me. Sword fight? Really?

  • fmpic May 07, 2013

    My first thought when the lights went out was "So the Graysons were paying the bills, eh?"

  • LiviaJones May 07, 2013

    Pretty sure Declan is gonna get killed next week. Charlotte and Jack crying, it makes sense. Can't say I'll miss that character.

    Really wish Aiden had been the one to die fighting Takeda. He's annoying, although I haven't liked Takeda since he turned into a different actor. (Could they not have found someone who looks a LITTLE like the first guy? Were they all "it's the Hamptons so one non-white guy is interchangable with another?")

  • QMargo May 07, 2013

    Speak for yourself....I will miss Aiden if he dies because his relationship with Emily is the only real thing aside from Ems and Nolan's relationship....But the spoilers said that the person who dies is someone who has been on the show since day 1 so sorry, sexy Aiden is sticking around.

  • heartzkidnapper May 07, 2013

    Man , this season was so freakin disappointing ! No clever revenge plots like season one. Boring new characters , Padma , charlotte's new friend and hell if they bring back that book writer again !!!
    A lot of lame moments : Amanda getting off balcony or whatever early this season and Aiden cutting the sword into half ...WTF is happening ?!!!
    Ok , I still have faith in the show , the whole city is off now , plzz bring some Awesome plots and end this season with a BANG!

  • katikool May 07, 2013

    So maybe I'm stating the obvious here or else I'm completely crazy, but Nolan accidentally activated Carrion with Falcon's Street Fighter high score, right? Her little smirk in prison was a little too smirky, if you ask me.

    And HEY! *I* will miss Aiden if he dies. I was very nearly concerned during the sword fight. I wish the Takeda-as-enemy thing had been drawn out a little longer (or, ya know, at all), but I enjoyed the plot while it lasted. And OMG DUH Takeda has been using Emily and Aiden for his own nefarious purposes! We've been predicting that junk since season 1. Too bad he died before Emily could confront him.

    Although the Porters are generally dull, I actually appreciated them a titch this episode. Sometimes you just need a character scrounging for bus fare to really ground a show set in the Hamptons, you know? And Declan actually acted like a very decent friend instead of a jilted teenage girl and it was very refreshing. It was also cool seeing Jack going toe to toe with Victoria. Of course, it was like watching a tee ball kiddie face off against the Yankees (sports metaphors!), but I enjoyed it.

    Guys, I'm worried Patrick is going to be boring. The storyline got a big yawn from me during this episode and since he's evidently not one of the dudes we already know, I no longer really care. Sigh.

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