Friday, May 10, 2013

My Review of Revenge's 2x20: "Engagement"

Written by Ellie Triedman And Sallie Patrick
Directed by John Terlesky

Victoria: “I know what a woman in love looks like and that’s not you. Not one year ago and not today.”
Emily: “I understand why you’re on edge, Victoria, especially here tonight.”

It’s nice that both Emily and Victoria really aren’t holding back on their mutual distaste for each other. Okay, Victoria’s never been shy in vocalising her dislike for Emily but the latter has tried to play it cool and has now opted for actually needling Victoria and it’s delightful to watch.

I loved that Emily managed to get in some sly comments about Patrick as well as flaunting her engagement to Daniel in Victoria’s face. However, what I really enjoyed was seeing Emily throw in Victoria’s betrayal of Amanda and David directly into her face. It might not have been subtle but it was certainly satisfying to watch nonetheless.

As a character, Victoria is an engaging one but make no mistake – she deserves to be taken down several notches for the lives she’s destroyed and even though Emily’s making her vendetta towards Victoria specifically more public, it’s still enjoyable to watch. This is a plot that works while the Initiative hasn’t been.

It’s taken a while for the writers to figure out that the Initiative just didn’t engage as an ongoing threat and this episode really went to town on hinting that their downfall was pretty imminent. They’ve taken themselves out of Grayson Global, who in return have actually given Nolan back his own company and the fate of activating Carrion pretty much relies on Edith/Falcon getting sprung from jail and doing it for them.

I assume the two part finale (and hope too) will completely take them out of the equation as this episode managed to take Takeda out of it too. I’m not entirely shocked that Takeda was using both Emily and Aiden as a means to his own end. When you think about it, it was kind of obvious really and unlike some people, I wasn’t too saddened when Aiden ended up killing him either.

I’m also not that annoyed that both Aiden and Nolan have decided to go behind Emily back and wipe the Amanda Clarke fund from the Graysons either. Aiden’s learned the hard way that getting revenge won’t give a peace of mind and Nolan’s always wanted Emily to step away from her pursuit of the Graysons as well. Unfortunately both of them managed to cause a blackout instead but what a way of ending the episode on a cliff-hanger, eh?

As for the engagement side of things – Daniel is deliriously stupid into thinking that Emily really loves him and Victoria knows that’s she not. Jack on the other hand continues to be self righteous about it and Emily herself seemed conflicted when Nolan commented on Daniel having some decency as well. Plus there’s Aiden’s barely concealed jealousy which probably intensified when Daniel took too great a pleasure in firing him after finding out about his father being baggage carrier on Flight 197.

Daniel’s douche like moments were a little tempered in this episode. He might act like a jerk but his love for Emily is sincere and he was certainly great in coming through for Charlotte in this one as well. Speaking of Charlotte – just no! The last thing the show needs right about now is another pregnancy storyline. When are shows like this going to realise that these plots need to be done more sparingly? On the plus side, it was rather amusing seeing both Declan and Regina competing for Charlotte’s affections though.

Last but not least – I liked the Allison Stoddard reveal. The fact that she was sabotaging her husband’s campaign because she feared for his health was a brilliant. Also brilliant was the fact that Victoria (presumably) used their conversation to ensure that Conrad will become a governor after all. Of course, Victoria’s worries for her husband’s health are a lot different to Allison’s but interesting nonetheless.

Also in “Engagement”

Nice view of New York at the start of the episode with Emily getting tickets to Paris for her and Daniel to move to.

Emily (to herself): “Engagement can be a commitment of love or a declaration of war.”

It seems that Ashley really is on Jack’s side in this episode. Then again, we’ll probably have to wait for the last two episodes to see if she remains on his side.

Daniel: “Emily and I are re-engaged.”
Conrad: “Allow me to offer our congratulations.”

Emily: “Oh, why thank you, Conrad.”
Victoria: “Yes, how repetitious.”

Ashley (re drink): “Jack, I’m working.”
Jack: “Actually, that was mine.”

It seems that Victoria paid off a teenage Patrick five million dollars when he tried to contact her originally. We also had about 34 different people in letter form pretending to be the long lost son.

Nolan: “You realise you can’t protect Jack, don’t you?”
Emily: “I made a promise to Amanda and I’m gonna keep it.”

Ashley (re Emily): “She always seems to get what she wants. People like them always do.”
Jack (re Conrad): “Not him. Not this time.”

Jack was a total numpty in this episode. Why the hell would he allow Victoria access to evidence about Conrad ordering a hit on Amanda?

Emily: “I wish I could explain it to you and someday I will.”
Jack: “Emily, I’m so tired of all the secrets and the half truths. It’s always someday with you.”

Victoria (re Conrad): “I’ve been married to that scoundrel for twenty six years and I have innumerable reasons for wanting to see him fail but what I don’t know is why do you?”
Jack: “He ordered my wife’s murder.”

Chronology: Is it winter in the Hamptons or have we skipped several weeks already? Last episode had some snow but this one didn’t.

“Engagement” was a solid episode, full of fun, snarky banter and a real sense of wrapping certain plotlines up. I know this season hasn’t been as well constructed as the previous one but the last few episodes have had a noticeable turn of improvement and to be honest, I think it bodes well for the finale.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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