Tuesday, October 01, 2013

My Review of Revenge's 3x01: "Fear"

Written by Sunil Nayar
Directed by Kenneth Fink

Nolan: “What are you gonna do?”
Emily: “Have the wedding of the century. Take Victoria down, once and for all.”

This show might have had something of a patchy second season in parts but it’s finale certainly promised a lot and the opening episode to the third season certainly delivered. If you call erasing nearly every plot from the last season a delivery that is.

Within the forty five minutes of this episode, Charlotte was no longer pregnant (a miscarriage while in Europe), Nolan was no longer in prison, the Initiative was gone and Conrad’s term as governor came to an abrupt end. Anyone would think that perhaps new show runner Sunil Nayar was almost a little too determined to pretend the last season didn’t happen but I actually think it will work in the show’s favour in the long run.

Of course the big thing about this episode was the setting up the mystery. We’ve already done murders at engagement parties and at sea, so this time Emily getting shot on her wedding night and diving into the ocean was a nice way of opening things up. The obvious question now has to be who shot her and why? There are some suspects here alright.

One of the first ones could easily be Ashley, who managed to get the red sharpie treatment in this episode by trying to blackmail Emily. Ashley has proven time and time again that she’s hopelessly out of her depth playing with the big leagues and forcing Emily and Victoria to team up with each other proved to be her undoing. While the character’s exit certainly came across as a tad rushed, it has provided her with an excellent motive for wanting to shoot Emily. I certainly think she’s a good candidate for being the shooter

Another candidate though could be Charlotte. I know on the surface both Charlotte and Emily have a civilised relationship but the former’s certainly come back a lot bitchier than before (mostly towards Victoria and newly discovered brother, Patrick) and apparently later episodes do see her becoming suspicious of Emily’s treatment of Daniel, so she’s another character that I think could be the shooter.

The third and other likely candidate could be Patrick himself. I know both him and Emily have not interacted with each other but in this episode he did seem very close to Victoria almost too quickly (in spite of the time jump here) and even by this show’s standards it wouldn’t be too far fetched to think that he could do it.

Last but not least – there’s both Victoria and Aiden themselves. Having Aiden show up at the last moment offering to take down Emily was unexpected. I do want to assume that he’s a trick but what if it’s not? What if Emily really did burn her bridges with Aiden like she seems to have with Jack and possibly Daniel in the near future too? Perhaps Emily’s shooter really is one of her three signature love interests after all.

Moving away from the shooter plot for the time being, this episode did feel like the series of old to be honest. I liked that both Emily and Nolan used their wits together in order to send Ashley back to Croydon and even get Conrad to believe that he has Huntington’s disease. It was a pretty cold thing for Emily to do but it certainly delivered on the producers promises that the character’s quest for revenge would be renewed. If they can keep this standard up all season we could be for some interesting times in the Hamptons.

Also in “Fear”

Nolan had something in Carrion that allowed him to be exonerated. The fact that Emily didn’t want to mention the Initiative again felt like intentional fan service.

Emily: “I’m not a Grayson yet, Daniel.”
Daniel: “Why don’t we finally set a date to make you one?”

Daniel seems to be unemployed but less hostile towards Conrad than he was last season. I’m not sure what to make of his French friend, Margaux just yet either.

Emily: “If memory serves, I still owe you a house.”
Nolan: “I guess sometimes payback’s not a bitch.”

Ashley: “Knowledge is power, Emily.”
Emily: “I thought you had power, Ashley.”

While Jack has a right to be mad with Emily, I did think he was a massive dick for both kissing her, rejecting her and then trying to get her to leave town in this episode.

Charlotte: “Who the hell do you think you are?”
Patrick: “I’m your brother.”

Victoria: “Trust me, I have very little of interest to say.”
Emily: “Doesn’t look like Ashley has that problem.”

I did find Conrad’s reaction to his painting rather amusing but I’m surprised we didn’t get either him or Daniel interacting with Patrick in this one.

Margaux: “And what do you do besides throwing lovely parties?”
Emily: “Well, I work in a lot of different charities. Making sure people get what they deserve.”

Emily (re the Graysons): “I am not killing anybody, Jack but I will make them suffer. These are terrible people doing terrible things. This is what they deserve.”

Standout music: “Hey Now” by London Grammar during the beach scene with Emily and Nolan. I liked that she bought him a house.

Ashley (re Emily/Victoria): “You two are evil.”
Victoria: “What we are, like it or not is family.”

Chronology: August 8th at the start of the episode and then June again for the majority of the episode. Six months has passed since “Truth”.

“Fear” was a pretty confident opening episode for the new season. An excellent way (if quick in some parts) of getting rid of the plotlines that didn’t work last season and setting up more interesting ones in their place. A great start to the new season.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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