Revenge: Collusion

Posted on January 23, 2013

Okay, Revenge-o-philes. You may all settle down now and stop leaving pouty comments or sending demanding emails. We finally got a chance to get caught up with the show. It’s not that we lost interest, which is what many of you seemed to assume. We got a new TV and DVR/cable box, and forgot to update the DVR to record the show. Now calm yourselves. To be honest, we were a bit surprised so many people asked about it, because we didn’t think the show was inspiring that kind of response anymore.

Anyway. Onwards.

Judging by reviews and online reaction, we think this season has not been as warmly received by the audience as last season was. The show, as many people noted right at the start of it, had an inherent problem. It was set up to tell only one story and it’s not the kind of story that necessarily lends itself to episodic series television. Sure, a revenge plot can be stretched out over years, if you set it up correctly, but Emily Thorne had a finite (and relatively small) number of people she needed to X out with her red Sharpie. Everyone wondered how the show was going to sustain itself once the red Xs started piling up. Well, now we know; a hidden secret group, controlling the strings from behind the stage. It’s not the worst idea in the world, but we groaned just a little at the cliche. Worse, the show moved away from the slight camp of Hamptons socializing and dug itself a trench in the world of big business. Again; not the worst idea in the world, but so much of this season has been taken up with rapid-fire, intense dialogue about things it seems most of the audience either can’t quite follow or isn’t quite interested in. After all this time, we still can’t tell you what the hell went on with Daniel’s ascension and the buyout of Nolan’s company. But – wonder of wonders – with this last episode, we finally have an understanding of the bigger picture. The Initiative bought Nolcorp because of some sort of disaster app called “Carrion,” which was developed by Nolan back in the day. They plan to cause some sort of disaster and, with the company they were all scrambling to buy out from that gorgeous black lady with the fabulous hair (sorry; too many new faces lately) rake in the bucks from the cleanup. This seems a little Lex Luthor for a show like this, but then again, we’re the ones who dubbed Emily “Hamptons Batman,” so we suppose we’re kind of excited that the show is transitioning from night-time soap camp fest to “save the world” campfest. This could actually be kind of fun.

And “fun” is appropriate to use here, because this episode was just plain that. There was a bit of a sparkle and crackle to the scenes, as if the writers have finally sloughed off all that business drama and can now get down to the ass-kickings. We’ll see on that front, but for the first time in a couple months, we’re hopeful about the direction of the show.

Random thoughts:

  • Nolan has the worst taste in partners, male or female.
  • Ashley’s back on top and being a bitch to Victoria. “Spoken like a woman that no one’s sleeping with.” LOVE. MORE, PLEASE.
  • Conrad came in, waved some money around, and essentially solved all of Jack’s problems, seemingly. If this holds, then we’re convinced the writers did a 180 after they realized what a nonstarter this plotline is. But Other Brother isn’t happy with the deal and suddenly Conrad’s interested in redeveloping the waterfront. Wasn’t he running for governor about 3 minutes ago? Wouldn’t slapping a bunch of casinos on the waterfront pretty much ruin his social standing in the Hamptons?
  • Victoria and Emily as allies, Emily saving Victoria’s life from Aiden. These are incredibly unlikely developments, but credit where it’s due,the writers are mostly making it work logically. We just love that Emily and Victoria are openly hateful toward each other now. “You selfish little girl!” MORE, PLEASE.
  • It’s interesting that Initiative Helen has absolutely no idea about Emily. The problem now is that Aiden isn’t exactly Emily’s staunchest ally at the moment, since he blames her for his sister’s death.
  • “Do it and I’ll buy you a house.” MORE, PLEASE.

 

  • MilaXX

    Eh’ I’m still watching, but the show feels awfully convoluted this season and not in a good way. There is nothing they could do to make Jack, Declan, the bar & the boat interesting. 

    Btw, will we get a wrap up post on Fringe?

    • Sobaika

      Cosigning the Fringe plea.

    • http://twitter.com/obscureobjects David Calder

      To make Jack, Declan, the bar & the boat interesting, they could always put Jack, Declan, & the bar on the boat before they sink it. Yes, the entire bar. All of it. That’s why it sinks. Too much dead weight. And I’m not even talking about the subplot.

      • http://twitter.com/SparklyCasanova UglyCasanova

        And perhaps introduce more assassins from Revenge Sensei.  

  • RussellH88

    I’m the just glad they’ve given a face to the Initiative, because it was kind of dull to just have them be this shadowy group that caused Victoria’s eyes to widen every time the phone rang.

    I read an interview with the creator as he said that he realizes that the Initiative needs to move a bit to the forefront and have their motives made a bit more clear, and I’m glad to see they seem to be making the steps to do that, especially since they’re shifting from the business buyouts and mergers stuff to a more diabolical, comic-book style plot.

    I would sacrifice a farm’s worth of animals to get a scene where Emily and Victoria break into an Initiative compound/warehouse/office in full on comic book garb. Madeline Stowe has a face built for a retro style-Eartha Kitt-Catwoman eye mask.

    • DeebaCee

      I’m just wondering when Helen of the Initiatives is going to come out of her car. Maybe I haven’t been paying close enough attention, but I swear that every scene she’s in, she rolls up in her chauffeured car, rolls down the window, threatens somebody, rolls up the window and drives off.

      • Qitkat

        She came to the party in Los Angeles, briefly, to meet with Aidan, met Emily and Daniel, and sailed on out rather quickly.

  • Sobaika

    This episode might have been a tiny uptick from the drudgery of corporate shenanigans, but I’m still not loving this season. I thought the best way to have the show evolve out of the Clear-Daddy’s-Name arc was to have the characters create their own isolated drama (like Tyler holding the dinner party hostage) not add layers to an existing story.

    My disappointment might be because I just got into Scandal, which handles the Fabulous Ladies Wearing Cute Clothes Doing Juicy Things Alongside Shadowy Government Corporate Figures story much better.

    • RussellH88

       Scandal is amazing and has really only gotten better as its gone on. Yeah, it’s soapy, but it’s well acted and well-written soap.

    • MilaXX

      Yes! Scandal rules my world this season. 

      I also checked out Kevin Bacon’s new show The Following and I fear it will fall into the same trap as Revenge. There is no way to sustain the premise.

      • annieanne

        I think the writers came up with a pretty good way around the short story arc problem. Kevin has an entire, unkown cult of Followers to chase around. That could go on for a number of seasons.

        • MilaXX

          I get that each week will be trying to stop the Follower of the week from doing something really bad, but I wonder. If that will be enough to sustain the show.

    • http://twitter.com/Goldielox73 Goldie

      I’ve been tempted to watch Scandal but political thrillers usually bore me to tears.  Also, the president killed Sam Wheat.

      • RussellH88

        The political thriller stuff really only starts happening in the second season. The first season is pretty short (6-7 episodes) and they’re pretty episodic with some overarching storylines and it really draws you in and does a greatjob of hooking you. The second season becomes a lot more serialized and plays out a lot more like Revenge in Politics as opposed to something like 24.

        • the_valkyrie

          The only parts I don’t like are the ones with Olivia and the President making googly eyes at each other. Jesus Christ they over-act. 
          Also Mellie and Cyrus FTW

      • Sobaika

        I held off because Shonda Rhimes shows and I never get along but it’s sooooo good, at least give it a try.
        If it helps any, the scandals are not so much Watergate as they are *ahem* blue dress. This isn’t The West Wing.

        • MilaXX

          I have a love/hate with Shonda. I love that she writes a world where people don’t look like they had to pass hollywood’s unspoken paper bag test and she is not afraid to cast folks with less than perfect bodies. 

          I’ll stick with Revenge as long as TLo recaps, but this season has been as uneven as one of Shonda’s low points of bad writing.

    • Jennifer Coleman

      The other thing about Scandal is that most of the characters are not dumbasses. The amount of idiots on Revenge who such up plot time is taxing to the viewers. They also pull the smarter characters into their plodding storylines which dampens down the tension. If the Dumbass Brothers and the Slightly Less Dumbass but More Evil Dumbass Brothers were to get blown up on the Amanda, Revenge would improve. And while they are trying to elevate Daniel from plain stupid to pawn with some intelligence, I do wish he can also grow some consistant personality traits.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509434130 Michelle Le

      I’ve been watching Scandal too, and I don’t know…

      - Kerry Washington’s face, while gorgeous, tends to completely overact and move more muscles than required.
      - The President is just as stupid as the Stowaway brothers on Revenge.
      - They keep having to remind the audience that the President is the most powerful man in the world and that Olivia Pope is amazing – she does car commercials in Japan…Olivia Pope punched me in the face once and it was AWESOME.
      - I can’t get on board with a character named Cyrus Beene.
      - Meredith Grey’s parents fighting in the Oval Office is very confusing for me.

      On the other hand…Olivia Pope does wear some amazing coats and jackets, so there’s that.

      • Veronica Russek

        OMG, they ARE Meredith Grey’s parents!!!!! LOL

        Shonda shows can go from really good to really bad in a few episodes and never recover from it.

  • http://twitter.com/buyamerican159 buyamerican159

    This show really did seem to be floundering under the weight of its own bloated storylines, but within the first 10 minutes of this episode I could tell things were going to go somewhere. When the Initiative lady said “Kill Victoria Greyson,” I knew that after this episode the status quo would be different. Either victoria would be dead (fat chance), Aiden would be dead (unlikely), or his sister would be (called it). No matter the outcome, some shit was going to go down. Here’s hoping this change of pace is something the writers can keep up with.

    • Funkykatt

      Ok….I will watch again but I was getting annoyed with it too but since you’re all on, then I am too. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Clydette-Wantland/673315286 Clydette Wantland

    Thank you TLo! I needed that recap!!

  • Jennifer Coleman

    TLo, the Kittentariat was beseeching you for the recap because we are too ambivalent about the latest Initiative plottings and want you to give us the highlights before we forget completely about the episode (which is due to occur by 12 noon EST every Wednesday) so thank you for the update.

    • imsusie

       Hi Jennifer! Of course we’re both TLo fans. :)

      • Jennifer Coleman

        Of Course, Susanna!!

    • out for a walk

      Kittentariat!! excellent.

  • LuvLy01

    Will you begin blogging about Scandal?

    • Sobaika

      PLEASE!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/lenoradody Lenora Dody

    Yes, my demanding comment is about Fringe! What did you guys think of the finale?

  • Inspector_Gidget

    I sort of agree that a turn into supervillain insanity could make the show interesting again.  I do have a few questions of my own, though.  
    - Why would Nolan write an app for his company that wipes out the power grid?  Kind of hilarious to think that they developed it as one of many company projects, then shelved it because they couldn’t figure out how to monetize it.
    - How can Ms. Crowley (mwahaha) possibly not know about Emily?  Aiden brought her as date to Victoria’s very public wedding, and they were both at that press event along with Madame Initiative herself.  Not to mention he’s always traipsing in and out of her beach house (which always seems to be unlocked and with all the windows open), sometimes in his civvies.
    - Why did Conrad reinstate Ashley?  She leaves in disgrace, then comes back a few weeks later saying she has to stay because she didn’t find another job?  And they accept that?  Buh?
    - Why does no one EVER realize that Emily is at the center of every single crazy event that happens?

    Oh, who am I kidding?  Pretty fun episode.

  • juliamargaret

    I don’t watch this show and haven’t read this post. Just coming in to say that the man in the thumbnail for this post looks just like Clinton Kelly, holding some kind of assault weapon, and I was wondering when you starting blogging WNTW and whether Clinton had some kind of breakdown. 

    • TropiCarla

      LOL @ this comment. My 2 girlfriends and I are about to have a WNTW marathon this evening after work. It would be hysterically awesome to see Clinton attempting some nonsense gimmick involving a rifle.  

  • http://twitter.com/Goldielox73 Goldie

    Padma being a bad guy ticked me off (why they gotta be so mean to Nolan?) but I’m glad Nolan has figured it out.  Although I think we’ll find out Padma’s situation is similar to Aiden’s in that they have a member of her family.

    I feel like Aiden has always been a wild card, now he has the potential to blow Emily out of the water.

    Dylan Walsh was wasted.  It’s not the Jack storyline that bores me, it’s anything having to do with Daniel running the company. 

    • Sobaika

      Maybe they’ll bring him back? Now there’s another person who has it in for Victoria. I like him and thought they were bringing him in for something bigger (and sexier). That being said, I thought the same for Elder Evil Brother, and he’s just the werewolf hunter on Teen Wolf so…

      Please don’t judge my terrible TV habits.

      • Soren Lundi

        He was also the witch hunter on the (already cancelled) Secret Circle.

  • http://www.tomandlorenzo.com/ Tom and Lorenzo

    We suppose it’s flattering that people want to hear our thoughts on other shows, but from where we’re sitting, it’s a bit rude to comment in a recap thread only to demand a different recap of a different show.

    • http://www.facebook.com/lenoradody Lenora Dody

       I’m sorry it was rude; I’ve been wanting to ask but I didn’t want to bother you with an email. I’ll do better next time.

  • VestigialMe

    I’m still loving this show. Maybe because I watch it with a group of people and can laugh at the camp of it all, but there’s something about Revenge that I just inherently enjoy. I’m also enjoying Helen Crowley as the supervillain who lives in a clock, who hangs up on people not by ending the call, but by rolling up her definitely not suspicious in any way black car’s tinted window. Yes, the Jack plotline is awful, but I’ve read that writers realize that season 2 hasn’t been working and are openly trying to fix that. I think that anyone not entirely enjoying the season should wait until it’s over and watch it all at once. They clearly have a long-term plan and I think it’ll be much more enjoyable that way. 

    Anyway, thanks as always for the recap! I felt like I should post since I’m one of the people who eagerly awaits your Revenge recaps, but rarely comments on them. I really enjoy them because it’s less about analyzing the show and more about having fun with it. It’s really refreshing. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Emily-Smith/12431153 Emily Smith

    huzzah, revenge recap!  i still love this show.  it amuses me.  the do it and i’ll buy you a house thing was glorious.

    • the_valkyrie

      Best line this season…

  • TAT93

    I’m still not convinced that Aiden’s sister is actually dead,because if so, how is the Initiative going to control Aiden going forward? Random thought, maybe his sister had dead years ago, they just recorded the footage to be safe in case Aiden returns??

    But writers please please let Nolan get everything back, he deserves so much better than all the people around him trying to manipulate the crap out of him.

    • DeebaCee

      I thought of both of those things. If I were Aiden, I would have required a time stamp on those videos. Or real-time face-timing or something. Who know when those videos could have been recorded.

      Also, just because someone looks passed out after they’d just taken some drugs doesn’t mean they’re necessarily dead. They could just be… passed out

      • TAT93

        Absolutely, if Aiden just turn against Emily because of that, then he is much too stupid to assist her revenge plan to begin with. Hopefully he’s better than this…..

    • annieanne

      Great minds!! If Aiden is such a well trained Takeda Batman, why is he just buying their story about his sister? He could at least insist they showing her holding today’s NYT so he can be sure the video wasn’t shot 4 years ago. And how does the final picture proves she’s dead? She could’ve been unconscious or even asleep.

  • SassieCassy

    this show smh

    so what was the point of “REVEALING” that nolans gf was shady last week if nolan was going to figure it out so soon. people go on about declan and the waterfront stories but i think pretty much all of the plots are sort of boring right now. this show can do better.

  • EEKstl

    Hmmm…maybe I will start watching “Revenge” again.  I actually had it DVRd but it was sacrificed to other Sunday night shows which I deemed more important, thinking I could always catch it On Demand…but I’d never bothered, because frankly the show lost interest for me this season.  But the TLo stamp of approval is enough to pique my interest a bit once more…

  • http://twitter.com/DarrenNesbitt Darren Nesbitt

    Emily and Victoria seem much closer. They argue more like family rather than two women who wouldn’t mind seeing each other dead. Emily is losing her edge. 

  • http://twitter.com/ndpndntfilm Susan Velazquez

    I just thought of an idea if Revenge writers get desperate. Emily hires herself out to people who seek revenge but are unable to dish it out themselves. I miss her crossing out people in pictures with red Xes.

    • http://twitter.com/Goldielox73 Goldie

      Or she could be like The Pretender.  She finds out about wrongs and sets out to fix them.

  • TropiCarla

    Enjoying the show, but LOVING your recaps. The “Random thoughts” section was pitch perfect. :-)

  • Zippypie

    This ep was a great improvement for all the reasons you state and hopefully it’ll stay on the right track.  Seeing the previews for the next ep with the boat hopefully means it will be – the less of the Stowaway & Co., the better unless it feeds right back into the main revenge plot.  And Aidan is acting pretty stupid for a sensei-trained superstud.

    I’m not convinced Helen doesn’t know about Emily.  She hinted she knew that associates of Aidan’s were behind the “kidnapping.”  We shall see.

  • Veronica Russek

    All I want to see at this point is who is on the sunken boat…

    I do wish Revenge went back a little to its original campyness, which it did seem to do in this episode!

  • nancymae

    Random POI: The beautiful black lady is Sherri Saum and her hair has been amazing for years.  She used to be on One Life to Live and now she pops up on random shows like Law & Order: CI, In Treatment and the like.  I have coveted her locks since grade school.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_5EB3A4Y6C5QYV5VWQJVKTBXPJA Mark

    Great post..thank you, missed the Revenge posts. Your comments always make the show better.

  • GTrain

    I can’t cheer Ashley in Ashley vs. Victoria. She’s still a lightweight to me and odd that the “Spoken like a woman no one’s sleeping with” line shut Victoria down, when she could have shredded her about being thrown out on her butt over the men she was sleeping with. 

  • Qitkat

    More Nolan and Emily colluding please. 

  • olsonam

    Your “MORE PLEASE” lines were the ones that I enjoyed too. 

    To me, it looked like the sister death video was from the same day as the sister getting high video.  Nothing was dated so I was surprised when Aiden assumed that the second video was taken at a later time, after he failed to kill Victoria.  I was expecting him to be upset that she was probably dead all along.  But I think the show wanted to break up Aiden and Emily so that she could have a more genuine relationship with Daniel again.  I personally like her better with no one and Nolan as a sidekick.  More Batman.

    I’ve watch the last three episodes with the closed captioning on and everything made so much more sense! Everyone talks fast.

  • turtleemily

    It bugged me when Amily was trying to appeal to Jack about not wanting Carl to lose his father with Jack going to jail without ever saying, “Like what happened to me losing my father.” But then she forgets that 18 is when David Clarke died, so I’m wondering if it was intentional that her disguise is slipping and will come into play later.

  • lindsey tam

    I’m glad you’re caught up on Revenge, and that you enjoyed this episode. With Nolan’s romantic problems and Victoria’s almost assassination, I thought it was great. I missed it when it first aired because I was working late at DISH, but I loved it when I saw it on my DVR a few days ago. My DISH Hopper was set to auto-record this episode of Revenge along with the other primetime shows on the four major networks using PrimeTime Anytime, so it was easy for me to watch the episode even though I forgot to set a timer for it.