Saturday, November 04, 2017

My Review of How To Get Away With Murder's 4x06: "Stay Strong, Mama"

Written by Morenike Balogun
Directed by Cherie Nowlan

Isaac (to Annalise): "Where the hell are you? She's awake. Answer the damn phone."

Well, it's certainly hotting up with this episode. In the space of 45 minutes, we got a better look into why Isaac is so fixated with Annalise while Laurel's mission to avenge Wes might also have contributed to Michaela and Asher breaking up among other things. This was certainly a busy one alright.

Isaac has seemed a little off and overly involved in Annalise since we've first met him and his attempts of getting her to open up about Sam and the baby she lost certainly make more sense now that we know he's lost a child of his own. I should've realised that the scenes with his own therapist Jackie would reveal that but by the end, it did come across as a genuine surprise.

Also surprising is the fact that not only is Jackie Isaac's therapist but also his ex-wife and the mother of the child they lost together. It was a nice twist moment as the episode made some uncomfortable parallels between Isaac and Annalise, which is why the latter seems so fixated on her when he wasn't also trying to get Bonnie to get professional help as well.

Keeping with the mystery angle though, we can now cross Annalise off the list as the last moment revealed that she was in the shower washing blood but with two episodes til the mid series finale, there's also Connor and Laurel's baby that has still yet to be counted for.

Speaking of Connor, I think this was his best episode so far this season. No moping or being nasty to people, just him and Annalise working together over the class action suit, helping Claudia's family keep her mother's house, shaming Denver's office and eating and confiding in each other. Given that they're my two favourite characters, every scene with them was a joy to watch this week. And we got a nice lap dance scene with Oliver in the mix too.

As for the rest of the episode, Laurel is overly pushing everyone this week and when it turned out that her father was making some deal public, it didn't stop Laurel from asking even more of Oliver and Michaela than she's done this season. I can see why Michaela given her growing closeness to Tegan doesn't want to ruin her life or career and even Oliver has plenty to lose himself.

However, Laurel's actions are already causing damage. You can tell whatever arrangement Frank and Bonnie have will end when she become privy of Frank sniffing after Laurel and this week Asher and Michaela broke up when he realised what his girlfriend and Oliver were up with Laurel and he went to comfort Bonnie, who was also in her own mess this week. Out of everyone, Connor had the least amount of angst this week.

- Tegan is gay and I have a feeling we're going to see either her seduce Michaela (or vice versa) within the next two episode.
- The teddy bear spy cam - really, Asher? That threw me a little. Laurel is still hiding her pregnancy from her father and Frank passed his test.
- Standout music: Veko's Zola Jesus at the end of this episode.
- Chronology: A week until the mid-season finale in the show's timeline.

Stay Strong, Mama builds up nicely with it's main plots bubbling away. Isaac and Tegan have been two great new additions to the series that their scenes have enhanced both Annalise and Michaela's characters along with adding to the general mystery as well. As for where Connor and Laurel's baby are, we're not long off from knowing now.

Rating: 8 out of 10

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