It has been no secret that the team behind Revenge has been trying to recapture the feel of the first season which it has been doing a fairly good job of through two episodes in Season 3. But what I really liked about this past Sunday’s episode “Sin” is it took a classic formula seen throughout the series, but turned it on its head a bit to shine a different light on the show’s lead.
“Sin” finds Emily going in for another takedown. Whereas last week we saw the return of the red marker, this week she even whips out the old Grayson Global company photo to pinpoint her next target, Paul Whitley. Apparently Whitley helped to turn people against Emily’s father back in his days under Conrad’s employ which is reason a plenty for Ems to take a run at him. But Whitley has left the corporate world and is now supposedly reformed and a priest. And this is where Revenge takes this in a different direction. They easily could have made it so Father Paul was still a sleazebag worthy of being put in his place, but he has genuinely changed his life. Unfortunately Emily realizes too late when her plan has already taken place and due to some racy photos she set up, Whitley loses his position. It’s not that the show has never alluded to Emily going too far with her revenge plans, but the way it is done here is just handled in a way where it really lands, not just on us the viewers, but Emily as well. Emily realizes the error of her ways and by the end wants to make it right. And while her motivations for fixing her mistake might still be a little self-motivated (she thinks Whitley can help Conrad to admit to his misdeeds), it will be interesting to see her crafty plans be used in a different manner.
It’s also worth noting that this may end up being a microcosm of the season. With Jack’s feelings about Emily this year and this episode showing some welcome but luckily short-lived friction between Emily and Nolan, I think this season will really play Emily’s grand revenging scheme against the obvious consequences she will face to pull it all off. Again it’s not something the show hasn’t done before, but as things go forward I think we might see it become a bigger focus and it will add an extra layer of depth to the show’s usual lighter more soapy fun.
Emily’s main storyline was certainly the core of this episode and why it worked so well, but there were some other plots that she had her hand in less as well. On the good side of these storylines was the uncomfortable dinner where Victoria introduced her long-lost son to her current family. It resulted in some funny moments like everyone’s reactions to Patrick and some great lines from Conrad like this barb about Patrick: “Freelancing is not a profession, dear, it’s a hobby one has between bartending shifts.” Conrad and Victoria exchanges continue to be worth the price of admission and this dinner helped give Patrick a better picture of the Victoria we have come to know over the first couple seasons. Working less well was Daniel’s plot with Margaux. I mentioned last week how she was obviously a device to cause friction between Emily and Daniel and yet it was too early for anyone to buy him going for her now. Maybe with that idea being out of the way, this storyline will go in a more interesting direction. I’m still not sure what to make about Aiden and Victoria’s budding partnership either, but I think I need to see where they go with that.
A few more things worth noting:
- The black hoodie made a comeback which is always welcome. I will try and not let the fact that she knocked out a priest in it dampen my enjoyment.
- I like how those blueberry muffins made their way back to Nolan.
- Jack made the best of his brief appearances by hanging out with puppies and crossing stuff off his menu with his own red marker!
- Something is still happening with Charlotte, but I’m still not sure I care. I like how she went from defending her father as a good guy to hating him by the end though. That was a plus.
- Sorry for the late review this week. This episode deserved better, but I will hopefully be doing Monday night reviews from now on.
I walked away extremely impressed with what they did with this latest episode of Revenge. While it is easy to get behind Emily’s quest for revenge (hey it’s fun), it is good for the show to examine the consequences of her actions and “Sin” featured a really interesting way for them to do just that. I’m still unsure about some of the new storylines this season, but more time is needed to see how they will pan out. Regardless it has been a really strong start for the season and I’m hoping it means a return to form after such a bumpy sophomore outing.