Let's get the important stuff out of the way: Jill Ohanneson, Revenge's costume designer, has really stepped up her game this season. Let's take a little stroll through Nolan's wardrobe this week.
First there was this:
And then there was this moment:
And then THIS happened:
And thanks to Shanshantastic for pointing out to me that ABC is selling several different versions of that shirt, so now you too can walk around wearing Nolan's mug shot on your body. Granted, it won't have the same effect as Nolan wearing Nolan, but it'll get the job done.
But really, the best Nolan Wear this week was the getup he chose for his housewarming party:
Guys, seriously, who cares about Emily's revenge plot when Nolan's throwing fancy parties dressed like that? J/K (sorta). "Confession" piggy-backed on last week's takedown of Paul Whitley as Emily was determined to track him down so Conrad could confess his part in framing David Clarke. But then something strange happened; Emily outed herself to Father Paul as he confessed his own sins.
Emily told Whitley that Amanda Clarke had been a friend of hers, and that she was willing to forgive Whitley for the part he played in framing Amanda's father, but he had to earn her forgiveness by persuading Conrad to confess to the world that he was behind everything, not David Clarke. This brings up a very interesting question: Why would Emily out herself in that way? It seems careless that she would trust him enough to reveal her real (fake) identity—and thus her plan to take down the Graysons—to him, even with the knowledge of the guilt he carries for his role in the scandal. She obviously felt guilty about the part she played in ruining his life last week, and maybe she thought that by revealing her true intentions that he would be more likely to acquiesce to her request, but revealing her identity this early in the season is the equivalent of a flashing neon warning sign that whatever followed would not be pleasant. It also meant that her plan was going to go up in flames. In this case, those flames were literal.
Father Paul was dead by the end of the episode, his lifeless body having been thrown from Conrad's burning wreck of a car. This, of course, happened right after Paul told Emily that he would confess if Conrad wouldn't, which meant Emily then had a Plan A and a Plan B. But she didn't account for Plan C, which included what would happen if Conrad suffered another episode while driving and crashed the car he was driving with Paul as a passenger. Emily found the wreck, found Paul's lifeless body and a disoriented Conrad, and her entire plan was D.O.A. as a result of her own meddling.
You see, Emily had been paying visits to Conrad's bedside this week and playing off as a concerned future daughter-in-law visiting a dying man, but in reality she was pushing her own confession agenda while switching out his real Huntington's medications for whatever drugs recreate the symptoms of Huntington's. She has no one to blame but herself for her plan going up in flames. Unfortunately, I don't actually believe Emily can feel human emotions anymore, and so this will probably just be labeled as a minor setback in Emily's revenge diary.
"Confession" is only the third episode of the season so any belief that Conrad would confess this early is ridiculous, and at first I was a bit annoyed the writers would even go that route considering how unbelievable it is, but then I remember this isn't at all about what we think or what we want or perceive. This is Emily's story and the plots must exist in her world as they exist in ours, and so Conrad meant to confess his sins, but Emily meddled and now Father Paul is dead. Everything Emily touches, every person who's found about out her plan to hurt the Graysons, either ends up hating her like Jack, or they get hurt in some way, like Nolan has on more than one occasion. The body count that follows in Emily Thorne's wake continues to grow even when she doesn't outright orchestrate the deaths in question. The girl is bad news, and everyone would be smart if they just stayed out of her path.
As I stated last week, I really enjoy this idea that Conrad wants to confess his sins as he's being crushed under the weight of his own mortality, but after "Confession," I'm concerned about whether or not this storyline has died along with Father Paul. It was a welcome twist to the revenge saga, and I sincerely hope it continues even after Paul's passing. Conrad definitely seemed hell bent on making things right, of showing his family that he's capable of pain and dying without any regrets. But Victoria was not cool with his new plan to save his soul from eternal damnation or whatever. Her apprehension is understandable, because that would throw her image into a bad light as well, but as she is wont to do, Victoria used her children as an excuse. HAHAHAHA, good one, V. If you cared at all about your children the way you say you do, you'd stop trying to ruin Daniel's life (even if you're 100 percent right about Emily).
This episode felt very much like the second half of a two-parter even though it wasn't played that way. It concluded a mini-arc, but didn't move the story forward all that much. It wasn't quite filler because Father Paul died and Aiden's true motives were revealed, but I wasn't moved by it, nor was I offended by it. It felt kind of boring and predictable, to be honest? Did you like it? Am I missing something? Was I just distracted by Nolan's fabulous fashion sense this week?
– As many of you suspected, Aiden's return was at Emily's request, and everything he's been doing with Victoria up to this point has been a way to bring them down from the inside. None of that, however, changes the fact that I find Aiden's storyline to be completely boring.
– We found out that Daniel shot Aiden at the end of Season 2, but he never told Emily about it because he thought Aiden got the picture and skedaddled. At this point, I'm really just waiting for Daniel to find out the truth, upper-cut Emily, and then run off into the sunset, because he deserves better than the life he's been given. (I know a lot of you don't care for Daniel, but look at that face! It's such a good face!)
– Nolan and Patrick: I think I ship it? Their scenes were filled with some tension, but not necessarily the kind that permeates Emily and Victoria's scenes. More, please!
– Emily outed the fact that the Graysons have no money in the middle of Nolan's party. Bitch move, or completely awesome?
— "I'm not asking you to build SeaWorld, just an enclosure on the beach with, I don't know, five or six dolphins for people to swim with." Nolan FTW!