Ringer: Andrew the Murdering Family Man

Ringer S01E17: "What We Have Is Worth the Pain"

Last week in my review of Ringer, I pointed out how hard it is to take the show's characters seriously when they’re so absurdly inconsistent. Little did I know last night’s episode, "What We Have Is Worth the Pain," was going to play ping pong with Andrew Martin: He went from evil, soulless monster to loving husband and back again. We’re past the point where I care about the outcome of Ringer’s disparate mysteries. Right now, all I want to know is, what the hell are they thinking?

“You conniving little bitch,” Andrew told Siobhan in a flashback. “I’ll kill you. I mean it, Siobhan. I’ll see you dead.” No mincing words there—somehow we’re supposed to reconcile this Andrew with the Andrew we’ve gotten to know over the course of Ringer's first season. I don’t care that he fell in love with Bridget, or that he was softened by her influence: In six months, you don’t go from threatening to murder your wife to renewing your vows. A person with that much anger and the ability to make such a realistic threat is not to be trusted. The moment we saw Andrew say that, I lost any respect I had for him. So what if he had a change of heart? Your husband threatens to kill you, you run.

And yet, Ringer wants us to believe that Andrew is misunderstood, that Siobhan’s—what, bitchiness?—is partially to blame for his aggressive behavior. Both of these people are awful, but the series can’t show us Andrew’s homicidal side and then ask us to believe that he’s come around. Whether or not Andrew killed Tyler or even sent the hit man after Siobhan, he’s a frightening, dangerous man. The power of love or whatever doesn’t trump someone saying, “I’ll see you dead.”

Ringer wants to present us with the idea that people are complicated, with ambiguous motivation and a sense of morality that changes depending on circumstance. I’m inclined to agree, but this series has cut corners to such a ridiculous extent that I don’t buy any of these characters. I believe that good people can do bad things, and that bad people have moments of conscience—but that is not what Ringer shows us. Instead, the show presents characters who are evil one week and pure the next, or sometimes both in the same episode. That’s not moral ambiguity: it’s bad storytelling.

Andrew isn’t the only problem. "What We Have Is Worth the Pain" also attempted to flesh out Siobhan. I’ll admit, I’ve been curious to find out why she would turn on her twin sister and plan this elaborate scheme to exact revenge on Andrew, but the explanation she provided was just as head-scratching as everything else Ringer has thrown at us.

“Bridget killed my son,” Siobhan explained to Henry. Except, uh, no she didn’t. Look, I buy that Siobhan blames Bridget for what happened to Sean, but when presented with the facts of the accident, I don’t see how she could come up with such a severe and misguided interpretation of the events. What’s worse, Siobhan told this story with tears in her eyes—are we suddenly supposed to give a crap about her? She’s a villain, and her motivation is laughable. “In order to prove my husband is willing to kill me, I have to make sure he kills my twin sister, who totally deserves it anyway.” That, if you’ll pardon my bluntness, is a whole new level of stupid.

And at the end of the episode, Andrew was shot saving Bridget. Cue the tears, because—don’t forget!—we like him again now. There was a way to tell this story and to make it compelling. I’m fine with the twists and the logical leaps, because Ringer is a trashy late-night soap and these things happen. But when nothing makes sense, from the plot to the backstory to the characters themselves, there’s no reason for me to care. And judging by the show’s dreadful ratings, I’m sure I’m not the only viewer who feels that way

Comments (19)
Submit
Sort: Latest | Popular
my best friend's ex-wife earned $12164 the previous month. she works on the internet and moved in a $437900 condo. All she did was get fortunate and put to work the tips revealed on this site NuttyRich . c0m
Reply
Flag
Honestly, do any of you people making snide comments -this includes the truly hateful author of these weekly reviews- actually WATCH the show? Honestly? Because based on everything I've read, most of you don't. You don't understand why Siobhan says Bridget killed her son? Remember the episode where Siobhan forbade the dead-beat father of her child from having any contact with his kid, and Bridget fell for his greasy charms and it ended up getting the kid killed? In courts, they put people in jail for shit like that.



Just ask any kid who was in on a robbery where someone was killed. They may not have pulled the trigger but they still do the time for murder. You don't understand why someone like Andrew can be "complicated"? Everyone else can, but on this show, they can't? Juliet is the biggest proof that people can be complicated. She went from annoying bitch, to conniving bitch to probably one of the most sympathetic characters on the show. She was spoiled rotten, used to getting her way with no consequences. And when reality finally caught up with her, she schemed to get her way and quickly saw how her actions can be detrimental to everyone around her and how people you think love you can betray you for their own selfish reasons. It's a nice little mirror to the main arc if you actually take the time to think about it. And for the idiot who thought it was "SO convenient" for Juliet to figure out the truth about what her mother had done...



HELLO! The kid Catherine hired to beat up Tessa specifically sought out Juliet because he got stiffed on the cash he was promised and anyone with half a brain could put two and two together about his story of punching his "boss's" wall and the hole in Catherine's hotel room wall. Use your brain, people! It's that lump three feet above your ass.



As for Andrew... Well that is a complicated story. Any person faced with being caught in a crime is desperate, especially when faced with betrayal by a spouse. But Andrew saw a change in Siobhan and believed that that change could affect him. Juliet had it right, Siobhan was good for them and they needed her. Bridget helped Juliet and Andrew realize how their own machinations were doing harm, both in the short and long term and it made them not want to be a part of that anymore, at least in mind if not in deed. And the real Siobhan telling Henry the truth about her son with tears in her eyes... To even ask the question of "are we supposed to feel for her?" is a sickeningly heartless one. OF COURSE we're supposed to feel for her! She lost her CHILD. If anything, that's the one thing we can say is NOT a lie about her. Siobhan grieves the loss of her child and scorns her sister for it. OF COURSE she thinks revenge by placing her sister in harm's way is the just thing to do! Kill two birds with one stone! Avenge her son, reveal Andrew to be a monster and get away scot-free to live her life in happiness with the person she loves. And if she has to be a foul backstabbing bitch to get her way, she sees it as poetic justice.



But it turns out people are, in fact, complicated, and the more they ruin Siobhan's plans, the more her mask starts to shatter, the more she sees herself as righteous. Two truly scary things in any person with means, motive and opportunity. It's good writing and good plotting, lost in a trashy soap opera setting with some bad pacing and too many fake twists. But it makes for good guilty pleasure viewing and is actually much better than anyone gives it credit for.
More+
Reply
Flag
Maybe Andrew himself hasn't figured out who or what he's supposed to be yet? After all, it IS television ...
Reply
Flag
This show is insane but after saying I would not watch it anymore.... here I am... I can't help it.... Like a guilty pleasure but times ten or something...
Reply
Flag
Yeah, they do seem to be flip-flopping with Andrew's character.
Reply
Flag
first I'd like to say how come no one's watching and most reviews are so negative????

the show isn't that bad and if you consider it trash, pls, GO DO STG ELSE!!!

I understand why Siobhan considers Bridget killed her son. She strictly forbade her to let him see his dad, and not only she let them meet but the kid died in the process. Don't you get the anger in can cause??? Don't you have kids???

I don't have kids, but I have 2 nieces and if anyone hurt them after strict rules were broken and even if it wasn't totally their fault, Id' probably become mental. And Ringer is a TV SHOW so yeah Siobhan might seem over dramatic but I GET that even if she's wrong!!! When your kid is involved you definitely lose any sense of perspective whatsoever, don't you????
Reply
Flag
This show is crazy crazy crazy and I keep watching just to see how much crazy it gets. It's unbelievable. Never seen anything like it. Truly unique show on TV.
Reply
Flag
I totally agree.... I like Ringer, most of the time I'm expecting the next episode to come. But seriously??? Andrew going from a supposedly killer to the one who makes a declaration of love to her wife, after "she" said that she doesn't love him?????

I think that the only caracter who is ambiguos is Andrew, Henry is a blind man, Machado continues with is quest to nail Bodaway , Shioban is, as we think, the true vilain, Briget is the nice girl and Juliet, weel she's just a teen. The only caracter who I have no idea if he's bad or good is the driver Solomon.

Oliva is just bad news as long as Catherine ( I think she is behind more things that we know, who knows if she was't the one who want to kill Shioban???).

I'm hopping that the writters return to the right path and once and for all let us know what the hell is going on, and give us strong caracters!!
Reply
Flag
I liked the episode and I think viewers and reviewers are actually missing a lot because they have preconceived notions in their minds.

The writing style of this show doesn't allow the viewer to know everything, and I like that, I like being surprised and seeing how duplicitous people can be. This is the type of stuff that really happens in the echelons of the 1% as well as in relationships the 99% can relate to as well.

I think most are missing the obvious clues that Olivia is the truly dark one, not Andrew, and so there wasn't as much flip flopping for his character as the review claims and others comment about. Granted in the past with his real threat, I still think Olivia is behind more than we know.

Siobhan is a little crazy or didn't you people pick up on that yet? I think there is so much more to the show, if viewers would pick up on the subtleties in each episode.

I love the show so far and enjoy it for what it is, which is way better than most other tv programs for sure!
Reply
Flag
there's that game when someone starts writing a paragraph and next person gets the last few words and continue writing it without knowing what has been said before... maybe that's what happens to this show ^.~
Reply
Flag
I'm in this show now and will finish watching it but when it doesn't come back for a season 2 I certainly won't be mourning it.
Reply
Flag
Let's just kill off the real badies.

Andrew, his partner, Malcolm and the real Siobhan



Then have Bridgette cleared and get all the money.

End of this stupid series.
Reply
Flag
I liked the coincidence of Juliet just happening to meet the guy who beat up her friend and then going to see her mom and saw the hole in the wall and figured out the master plan. It was totally believable that could happen.
Reply
Flag
I thought the series was off to a good start but these last couple of episodes are truly embarassing. Feels like the writers of The Event went here, it's without a doubt the most stupid stuff on TV. The writers have no idea where they're going, they just think from week to week. Part of that can be blamed on numbers, they struggle and try everything they can to surprise. But not only don't they get new viewers that way, they get rid of the few fans they have.
Reply
Flag
I kept trying to like Ringer, week after week, cause I think SMG is a great actress. There were some good episodes,, but enough is enough,, I ll keep watching the show,, hope it does well,, even though I doubt it. This is probably its last season and I think it deserves to be cancelled
Reply
Flag
Siobhan seriously still thinks she in the right here. Ah no! Bridget didn't kill her son, yes I understand hating her but Bridget wasn't the one who was driving the car that hit them that night. Yeah I kind of scratch my head on that one too. Oh Henry's dumba**, I used to feel sorry for him, but man I can't wait to see what happens when the knowledge that Siobhan had something to do with Gemma's kidnapping and eventual death. See if you would love her then. Oh and not just that she might not be having her his babies either. Siobhan is just plain evil, she'll get her come-up-ins though.
Reply
Flag
As for her "motivation," I have to agree with the reviewer. I can understand hating a person for what happened, but try explaining those facts to an unbiased person and they'd probably call the looney bin. "Umm, she and my baby-daddy decided to go to an event my son really wanted to see. And a driver blew through a red light and crashed into them, killing him. She, like, TOTALLY killed my son."



Umm, no.

Reply
Flag
I didn't see the whole episode, but it's possible someone could be such a BAD person that it could cause you to angrily YELL that in an argument.



Then again, it looks like he tried following through at one point... or at least seriously considered it with his partner in crime. So if that's true, then yeh... I don't see how one can seriously consider murdering her and then a month later renew his vows.



Reply
Flag
Stopped watching 3 eps ago.
Reply
Flag

Like TV.com on Facebook

Most Commented Posts

  • 20 hours ago
    3