Revenge S3.01 – Fear

This is basically just a play-by-play of my reactions to Revenge’s S3 opener, which I had high hopes for. David E. Kelley had a pretty lacklustre run in S2, but I’m backing him to return to form this season. Hey, sequels are hard.

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So we start with a flash-forward of Emily in a (?)wedding dress that would make Natalie Portman’s cuckoo ballerina swoon, saying “sorry” and getting shot. Which seems like something she’d do herself, so fair call. They haven’t left much wiggle room for her to come out unscathed – you see blood coming from bullet wounds in her abdomen and there sure isn’t room for much Kevlar in the bodice. So we zoom into Emily lying in the water in a weirdly Christ-on-the-cross pose, then merge and out into a ‘2 months previously’ of her and Daniel by the pool. I love how vaguely disgusted she always looks when she’s with Daniel but not making direct eye contact with him. Anyway, the engagement’s back on and we find out there’s been a 6-month jump since the end of S2, during which Daniel and Emily have been… canoodling? Also, he’s unemployed. I feel that, bro.

Moving along to Victoria and a mystery man, who is clearly her son, but EW why are the writers pretending he’s her lover? And are we srsly supposed to believe Victoria has been rusticating in equine simplicity for 6 months?! And they just confirmed he’s her son so, again, WHY all the awkward and icky Oedipal subtext in his intro? *And* why is Charlotte a stone cold bitch now? This could be interesting for her, but I feel like they’ll beige it out, as always happens with promising Charlotte storylines. Phaa. It’s like they think of something really cool for her (drugs! the death of her boyfriend! a fringe!) but then can’t be bothered actually committing to following it through. Anyway.

Emily meeting Nolan as he is released from jail, having done exactly zero on-screen jail time = happy feels!! Also love the glib ‘oh btw this is how I got out LOLZ’. They do this with Nolan, because he’s obvi smarter than anyone, including the writers, so his storylines never get as fully realised as they should. It’s all hand-waved at the end with ‘oh, because he’s a genius but has dreadful time management skills/taste in partners/whatever shhh’.

Hehe “arctic pools”. That is all. I’m over Conrad.

Ashley is trying to blackmail Emily. Huh, I wonder how that’ll go for her. Watching her trying to be hard-ass is kind of adorable, though. Like a kitten trying to roar. But I am probs more scared of the kitten than I am of her. Oooh and now it’s gonna be Emily and Victoria vs. Ashley. This will be the shortest battle ever. Also, I predict that Victoria’s piano interlude will turn out to have been foreshadowing the revelation that she was a musical wunderkind, cruelly exploited by a foster parent or aunt or something. Everything in her backstory is a freaking Dickensian melodrama. Speaking of which, ugh, so over the Conrad/Victoria ‘forced together but bickering’. Although I did love how in that scene Charlotte was right between them during the fight but only got one reaction shot. It’s like even the director forgot she was there.

Emily has bought Nolan a house, because she ‘owed him’ one. I don’t get that reference (something to do with NolCorp?), but I don’t care, because NolEm and gorgeous scenery. Seriously, these two always live in such fantastic places. She’s got rustic glam, like a super-Country Road, and his places are always so full of water, straight lines and blue. Does want. There should be a ten minute clip after each episode of him just walking around his various fabulous abodes being gorgeous.

Ok, back to the ep in hand. Charlotte has gone to find Patrick, because she thinks he’s her mother’s lover, because of course she does. He wanders out from the shower in a towel. Ew ew ew what is with this overly sexual brother?! Not ok. Put on some damn pants when you meet your sister!! I mean, sure she broke in, but excuse yourself! Awkward turtles all round. And the revalation was another Disappointing Charlotte. She just went “oh, that is SO LIKE MOM!” Yeah, ok mini-crazy.

To the Stowaway!! Has this place just been closed for 6 months? Why has everyone magically come back to town the same day? And how has Jack been living, if the bar’s closed? More importantly, why is Emily surprised that Jack is still pissed? Seriously, you could kind have guessed that. And wow, he is super harsh. The whole “I love you, haha no j/k”? Ouch. That shit was mean in kindy and it’s meaner now. Although it would have been a hella anticlimax after all the pussyfooting around and starcrossed soul-gazing of the past two seasons.

Right, so Patrick asks Victoria to swing by because rich people don’t own phones that can call, only text. Irrational side note, I hate it when women say “this is just something I threw together”. No, it’s a dress and some tastefully understated jewellery. Unless you whipped the frock up on your Bernina this morning, you didn’t throw anything together. You got dressed. Congrats. Maybe soon you can learn to use a fork.

Anyway. I am loving watch Vicky go all psycho-needy on the boy – I’m almost understanding his apparent boundary issues! Also, of course he’s an artist. Of course. Ugh. And why does he seem so well-adjusted? Only possible solution is that he’s an Emily plant. There’s no way that amount of crazy is not hereditary. In the space of a few hours Charlotte has released all her least-favourite-child pent up angst at him, and Victoria has told him that wanting to go back to the life he presumably had for 20-something years before dropping into her life six months ago, for a *visit*, is awful because he’s leaving FOREVER and it’s all because she abandoned him. Wow. Yeah, no, can’t imagine why he’d want to run far, far away.

Finally we get to the big party that everyone’s been talking about all episode. If this is actually what the rich and famous do all day, it kind of sounds awful. They need to take a lesson from Lady Sybil. But for all her fashion-forward-ness, even the great Sybil would have to agree that Ashley’s dress is hilarious. It’s like her nipples are staging a violent exit. I feel like I should be enraged on behalf of womankind that the price for silence was basically ‘pimp me to your rich contacts’, but I can’t take her seriously enough to have any real emotions. The dresses are nice, and I like how Emily manages a very subtle LOOK AT ME by wearing cream and red to an all-white do. Scandal.

Nolan onna hanglider!!!! +50 points. Ahem.

Poisoning Conrad? Ballsy but I feel it lacks Emily’s usual finesse. I just thought she was gonna make him drunk and douchey. Let his inner jerk fly. But, no, to Hospital!! Eep, why is the Doctor trying to terrify the  family with all the medicobabble? Terrible bedside manner. But if Emily’s faked the Huntingdon’s, this is the *best* revenge yet!!!

Oooh back home and Jack is laying it all on the line and giving deadlines – this is the tension Ashley could never hope to generate, not with 50 blackmailable secrets and 500 questionably-executed garments. Speaking of whom, the Verbal Destruction of Ashley is amazing. Especially the Croyden dig. Ouch. Bye bye pretty lady!

Ok, the wedding’s on. What’s the significance of August 8? Ooooh 8/8 – double infinity. Of course.

Haha red marker!! And she DID fake the Huntingdons! Using Nolan tech-wizardry!! This is always the best bit. Emily being evil and Nolan being supportive and quietly fantastic. And spelling out the symbology. Bless. Hmm, but the fake-Huntingdons will only persist as a problem until they re-test Conrad (do they do that? It seems like a thing you should do. Monitor things and suchlike.) and then it will become *very* obvious that some major, above-Ashley-level shenanigans have been perpetrated. Maybe with the sped-up timeline, she just doesn’t care?

Oh, another scene which I thought was a dream sequence but WHUT?! Aidan?? No. Leave, Aidan. No-one wants you here. Bad Aidan!

So, an uneven but generally good return to form for one of the most ridonkulous shows I watch. Red pen and NolEm chicanery = very good. Long periods of Victoria hate-grimacing at Emily, Conrad and Victoria doing angry verbal foreplay and Charlotte and Aidan continuing to exist = bad.

Over to you Miz!

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6 thoughts on “Revenge S3.01 – Fear

  1. Good work JJ!! So. much. detail 😛 My general thoughts is that this episode was such a mish mosh of ideas and stories… I’m not really sure whether this season is going to redeem itself after an awful season 2 – aka BRING BACK THE RED CROSSES ON THE PHOTO OF REVENGE. No more Carrion or the Initiative, but sadly Aiden made a return. Let the grumbling begin!

    Miz responds in kind:

    1) Wedding dress was neat but who kills Emily here? Is this how season 3 will die, or is it all a set up for Emily to die and Amanda to start a new life? [Miz roots for Emily/Amanda and Jack] JJ – Didn’t Amanda die in this way? Foreshadowing or simply a dream?

    2) EWW step away from your SON Victoria. Nasty woman. So we found out that she left Conrad – does this mean she’s nice again? Ugg, is it bad that I’m dreading the “poor me” Victoria storyline already?! Also, incredibly weird dynamic between Victoria and Patrick that bordered on intimate. DOUBLE UGG.

    3) The writers seem to have dropped Charlotte’s pregnancy story. Good. It was an awful story. Though I feel sorry that there will be no little Declen’s running around to join Baby Amanda (does Baby Jack Amanda have a name? Did I literally block out a really painful memory of the last season. Oh that’s right, Baby Kyle right?).

    4) Emily did need to give penniless Nolan a house. JJ, there was a conversation about this some part last season. Basically this friendship is ruining Nolan / has ruined him. So there has to be something more than pure “sibling” friendship. [Also, JJ, Nolan is still 40 years old in real life… Blows my mind!]

    5) Ashley is a bitch. She’s now going after Emily. Ugh. I hope she disappears – she’s a social climber with absolutely no skills. Except for being able to wear sky-high heels. ARGH. RAGE. She got Emily-ised though!

    6) Victoria plays piano? Ugh, writers trying to bring out her softer side. They will have a long way to go before I believe her turn of events! Ooo JJ good point about being musical genius. Good prediction!!

    7) Victoria’s son Patrick … He’s Emily’s plant right? I mean she followed Victoria to the nunnery place. Surely! He’ll be back. Like Emily’s black foster brother. Totally will be back. Unless he died. I can’t recall.

    8) I missed Kyle from Roswell. Glad Jack is back. His angst is my favourite character though he totes lies about not feeling anything. Jack and Emily/Amanda have to work everything out, but then he’s super mad – totally within his right!! – so there is a lot of storyline development here.

    9) Memorial Day part-tay. Emily’s dress is amazing. French girl annoyed me. Charlotte looked like she was getting married. Nolan ROCKS haha. SO SO SMOOTH!!

    10) Daniel’s not drinking again?! GOOD. This should have happened all of last SEASON. It’s like the writers remembered that Daniel shouldn’t be drinking after he almost killed his high-school girlfriend. Huge continuity issues happening for me here. But what the hell is the French girl doing? Ugg, another love affair for Daniel? Also, Daniel has no job but keeps spending up large. Silly billionaires from money.

    11) Poisoning? Totally not complicated enough. Having been to a first-aid course today, Miz totally could have helped in this situation. *smug* Huntington’s is a curved ball though and will be bound to throw a spanner in the works. Well played Emily and Nolan. Wonder if the doctor is a plant… Possibly not.
    [Also, Huntington’s is a hugely serious disease. This show was light on it but I want to reiterate that this is serious!! It’s really going to annoy me on a personal level if the writers play light with this medical issue. UGG.]

    12) Double infinity date is pretty awesome. Big fan.

    13) GO AWAY AIDEN!!!! I thought that was all dealt with last season. Ugg, so a three way love square (?) – Emily vs Jack, Daniel, or Aiden. Also, is he still Team Emily or is Victoria’s team going to get a lot better looking? 😛

  2. I agree – although this kind of series can’t really have a new ‘big bad’ every season (they kind of tried in S2 with the Initiative and that was a hot mess of awful) it does feel like we’re losing focus a bit, and just having loads of little bitsy storylines.

    1) Oooh you make an excellent point re: death-faking, although it seemed a bit domestic for her to be staging her own death, unless people are watching from another boat/level type deal. And yeah Amanda did die that way, though much messier and less Jesus-y. But the Jesus thing also points to resurrection, so… I like this theory.

    3) Haha, Carl, after Jack’s papa, but yeah, they thankfully didn’t wanna do a teenage pregnancy thing with Charlotte. Although if she’s had a baby girl and called her Carlotta (after Declan’s dad and sort of her name) that would have been hilarious.

    4) Ah, good. I felt like that was a weird throwaway comment and I’d probably just missed something. And yes, Gabriel Mann has clearly been borrowing the One Ring from Elijah Wood (who is still the same age as when he shot LotR). And I think he genuinely doesn’t care about money, plus feels that since Emily’s dad is the reason he’s ever had money, that it’s ok to lose it all helping avenge him. What a dude.

    7) Hmm, I think the foster brother has been neutralised; surely he realises now Emily’s way too dangerous for him to mess with? But I assume that, if Patrick *is* Emily’s plant (which I am fairly sure of), he will at some point attempt to double-cross her and she will have to Red X His Ass. His not being the real babychild of Victoria could also explain the weird sexual undertones to all his ‘familial’ interactions.

    8) Ahaha so glad I’m not the only Roswell fan! I loved that show, even when it went totally guano-bananas. Yeah, I think dark, lying, secretly-in-love Jack is way more interesting than duped, simple, confused-in-love Jack.

    9/10) I think the French girl annoys me because she’s obviously out to tempt Daniel who, despite seeming to be faithful in relationships (for which big gold star), nevertheless has the general moral character of a sponge. His cheating on Emily would not matter at *all* to us or her, as it pales in comparison to his other offences, but it would lead, I fear, to a lot of ‘oh poor *me* I’m so *confused* oh *dear*’ blah blah from Himself. Which, frankly, I care not a whit for. And he is still drinking (see: French girl’s first scene, in a bar where they have a truly bizarre chat) but just not to excess. I agree though, he should be teetotal. But that would imply backbone, so… And I also wanna know where the money’s coming from. I assume he’s living off Emily’s money? Classy. Not that men have to be the alpha-earners, but he could at least put up a profile on Seek or Monster or something!

    13) If Aidan and Victoria join forces I will be deeply, darkly disappointed. I want him to go away now and joining with Victoria would strengthen his position. And I don’t want Victoria to find out the truth about Emily from anyone other than Emily.

    Harrumph!!

  3. 3) Carlotta?! Where do you come up with these things?! Your brain is hilarious!!

    8) I recently tried to rewatch Roswell. It was hilarious. I recommend you watch a couple of random episodes and laugh at the two main character and Max’s (?) brooding darkness. Hilarious! Kyle and Izzie were my favourites – also, note that I refer to actors by their character names. SORRY FANDOMS.

    13) Team Aiden and Victoria CANNOT HAPPEN. How do we sabotage this??

    • 3) I sleep very little atm.

      8) Ha must do that. But I fear I would fall into a hole of binge-watching whole seasons. And then Tess would show up and I’d lose the will to live because WHY?! Liz is super beige, sure, but Max is so whiny, so they’re kind of perfect! And the tragedy of Kyle and Izzy?! Oh wow I’m getting teenage-emotional just remembering it. I might have to wait till I’m in my 60s to rewatch… And fandoms are all about actor/character confabulation! For funsies!

      13) I suggest Araldite. Or Semtex. One or the other.

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