Revenge went back to basics last night, reverting to its procedural formula from the earliest days of Season 1: Introduce a villain, bring him down. Judge Whatshisface got told off by his wife, who revealed to a stunned audience that he had smeared her muscular arms with bluish paint AND mishandled David Clarke’s case.
It was probably the most direct takedown Emily has pulled off, as it publicly questioned David Clarke’s guilt and she didn’t slide through an air duct or rig up a camera to make it happen, she openly acted as Emily Thorne on Amanda and David’s behalf. Could this mean that by the end of the season David Clarke will be redeemed and Emily can put her Batman skills into straight-up exposing the Initiative? Or is that several seasons down the line?
I was also charmed by the athletic foreplay between her and Aidan. They aren’t just karate partners, they’re acting partners, as they staged a break-up for Daniel’s benefit. I don’t know if Aidan using the back door to conceal their relationship is going to make that much of a difference now that Emily and Daniel are back on, because last time I checked that means sex and how cool are spies with business sex? The episode promo suggested that Aidan was going to turn into a “Jealous Lover,” although I would describe objecting to your GF getting it on with another man to learn his business secrets as being more of a “Reasonable Person.”
On the other side of the tracks, the Porter boys and the Ryan brothZzzzz. Oh my God when will this plotline end?! Is Jack going to go to trial? Do bars really buy multiple fifty-pound bags of whole Columbian beans? I can only think of two mixed drinks that involve coffee and they both seem way too fancy for Red Lobster.
I actually love when everything goes well for the Porters, because Fauxmanda moving forward and not looking back and making the most of her new life is a better foil for Emily’s thirst for revenge when it provides a positive contrast. If Fauxmanda’s life is supposed to be a version of existence that Emily gave up to pursue her vengeance, then clearly Emily didn’t miss much. Poor Jack is just too damn dumb even to pull off a sting on his own bar, and he managed to full-on confess to smuggling drugs during a raid he had requested. “You had one job” doesn’t even cover it; like, all he had to do in this entire series was to run a bar and now he’s gotten himself arrested for drug smuggling and has a baby with a stripper-murderer whose true identity he still doesn’t know. What a Greek tragedy of a man.
Nolan, meanwhile, is turning his own sudden fortune into a series of electric one-liners, making cracks at his boss, Marco, quipping “Quelle surprise!” and wearing a king’s ransom of shirts. How many shirts was Nolan wearing last night?! My eyes have seen the glory. It was so many shirts. I like that Marco is back in play as a romantic rival to Padma, although both of those folks we have seen onscreen for a grand total of five minutes and neither of them particularly crackles with chemistry across from Nolan.
I am seriously enjoying that the face of the Initiative is this MILF-y cougar delight of a redhead. I love her machinations, I love that she’s always in a limo, I love that she got the drop on Aidan by having sixteen friends with laser pointers slither out of the woodwork. I don’t know how or why she would have Aidan’s sister, but I don’t doubt that Revenge will find a plausible explanation. This show's plot spackle is always temporary.
I also like Victoria’s implication to Daniel that he NEEDED her party-throwing skills to succeed. Deals are struck over cocktails and under ice sculptures! If Victoria is going to be her son’s party-planner going forward, and if Emily is going to be his girlfriend again, the writers have essentially reset the series, but with a lot of good stuff stirred in. (Although I miss Ashley terribly! What is she doing now? Is she in a Williamsburg flat printing out resumes?! What is she wearing?! I need to know!)
What did YOU think of this episode?
1. Is Emily going to lose Aidan pursuing Daniel?
2. Will David Clarke’s innocence be established by the end of this season or...?
3. Nolan’s romantic interests: any preference?
4. Are you sick of the Porter boys' current plotline or is it holding your interest?