October 31, 2012 by Susan Miller
Okay! We’re finally getting somewhere! All the random fringe story lines started to come together and Emily’s getting her groove back. She’s also crying a lot, which I really hate, but at least she kicked Aiden off her couch. In addition to couch-kicking, Faux-Manda woke up from the most inconsequential coma in TV history, Declan and Charlotte split very little screen time, Jack smiled for the first time this season, Kara acted mysterious enough to seem interesting, Victoria wielded gardening shears, Daniel continued his streak as worst employee ever, the money trail is still unfathomable and Mason Treadwell is back! He is by far the smartest person on this show. If anyone can make sense of this season, it’s him. In Treadwell we trust.
Is David Clarke a good guy?
Susan: I think so. Just because Emily’s mom went from bad to good to sick to bad to good to questionable doesn’t mean that David is bad. It just means that Emily’s mom keeps saying that David was bad and that David would “change” Emily. But of course, we have to remember that Emily’s mom was married to the white-haired man, so she’s not exactly the most reliable narrator. Also, there’s that whole business of her being institutionalized. I suppose the story could go that David made her sick and she’s just been a pawn in this twisted Initiative/Grayson/Clarke revenge plot for her entire life. Surely that’s too far-fetched. This show has some boundaries, right?
Steven: I asked this question for two reasons. First of all, Kara Clarke is acting very strangely throughout her conversations with Victoria Grayson. They both seem to believe that David deceived them, though neither one elaborates (of course). Kara seems pretty emphatic about it when she’s out on that patio. Though she seems to drop it completely when discussing the Graysons with Emily. That means that either she is appeasing Victoria in the first scene and revealing her real plan only later, or she was also wronged by the Graysons, in addition to David locking her up unjustly. Or, she’s just crazy. My second thought: Victoria is not as evil as she appears to be. This theory requires a ton of circumstances to be revealed later on. David Clarke would have to be a bad dude, an actual terrorist, and the Graysons actions to put him away would have to turn out to have been warranted. Also, Kara would need to be completely crazy. Nolan would have to have been duped by David, meaning the man would’ve needed to outsmart a future visionary. Furthermore, David would need to have enough motive to keep him going through years of imprisonment. His own sense of revenge would have to be enough to keep him lying about what happened in his journals for years, and enough to send his own daughter after the Graysons. All that being said, I still think that it’s possible. I’m still rooting for Victoria.
Why do the writers want to take Jack’s bar away?
Susan: This is all just a long con to make us believe that the severed arm in the Amanda belongs to Jack, right? He’ll sell the bar and Declan will have money and he’ll finally be able to go to Haiti and then – boom – he gets blown up en route by Emily’s revenge plan. Right? I’m guessing that’s what we’re supposed to think, but it will actually be the weird guy who bought the bar and then Jack will be back, stuck, tied to stupid scrap plot lines with stupid Declan and his mopey hair. Also, what’s up with the weird guy? One episode he’s nice, the next he’s sneaky, the next he’s nice again. The Porters are a mess this season, and Nolan needs to come back stat to give them some sort of tie to Emily and the main plot again. Who knew that killing off wonder dog would remove him from so much of the action?
Steven: I have no idea why they want Jack to be unemployed. Cleaning the bar and being dissatisfied with his baby-mama is all they’ve given him to do this season. If they take his bar, what will he and Declan be doing in their scenes? Will they just stand there with their hands in their pockets, bar-less, looking dissatisfied with their lot in life? In writing classes, if you have a character who is just sitting on the couch, what do they tell you to do? Take away the couch! I feel like the writers here have had a similar epiphany. “All these guys seem to do is clean their bar… I know, let’s take away the bar!” I do hope it works. I sort of doubt that it will.
PIGI (Pretentious Inner Grad-student Interlude):
This week I was going to write about dopplegangers. You know, Emily/Faux-Manda. Will Emily sacrifice herself so that Faux-Manda can have a happy life? Do these two half-people (one cold and revengey, the other loyal and dim-witted) make one whole person? Etc. However, then this week I read an article about Hitchcock’s Vertigo, and completely changed my mind. (Yes, I know that the entire premise of that movie is also a doppleganger, but it gave me a completely different idea.) In that essay the author discusses suspense and surprise. Imagine there are two people at a table. Beneath the table there’s a time bomb. If the audience doesn’t know about it and the characters don’t know about it, when it goes off we’ll all be very surprised. Now imagine that we see the bomb but the people at the table do not. It ticks away and they go on talking about the weather. That’s suspense. The combination of the two drove Hitchcock at every turn. The writers have firmly developed the surprise part (do you know what’s going to happen next?), but perhaps not the suspense. For instance, what is everybody’s plan? I would settle for knowing anybody’s plan really. We used to know that Emily would stop at nothing to avenge her father’s imprisonment. Now she’s trying to figure out if she wants to forgive her mom and doing a whole lot of other non-revengey things… like cuddle and cry silently against a wall.
Can Kenny go away now? He’s actually budding up to Declan at this point. Declan. “You remind me of a young, terrible character like myself.” I don’t think that’s the direction he wants to go if he wants interesting plot-lines in his future.
Also, what’s up with Padma? She’s interested in Nolan’s books, she’s interested in Nolan, and now that he’s finally not abandoning her every scene for Emily she’s decided to investigate his relationship with David Clarke? Here I thought we were being introduced to a nice character, one who just wanted to be happy and travel around the world. Instead, it looks like she’s going to cause more trouble to Nolan than Daniel has caused to Conrad. For one, she actually knows how to read the documents she uncovers. (Is it just me or does Daniel look as befuddled as a five-year-old trying to read Dickens whenever he has a report in his hand?) Whatever she uncovers, I hope that they don’t turn into another Daniel/Ashley relationship. So pretty together. And yet so pointless.