Revenge Recap: Spin, Doctored

“Fake it ’til you make it” could’ve been the theme of this week’s Revenge, which found Daniel pretending he was on his mother’s side, Amanda pretending that she was a welcome addition to the Grayson clan and Emily pretending that she was an emotionless automaton (well, even more than she usually does). Let’s take a look at what went down in “Confidence.”

AIDEN AND ABETTIN’ | After a quick 2008 flashback to Takeda’s School for Those Who Look Really Good in Black and May Also Have Some Severe Attachment Issues – in which Aiden bested Emily in a challenge by playing on her feelings for him – we pick up right where last week’s episode ended. White Haired Man is now White Haired Dead Man, thanks to Aiden’s bullet, which also took out the would-be assassin’s cell phone. Em is not pleased that her old classmate saved her life, but as they deal with WHDM he points out that the search for her mom is distracting her from avenging her father’s murder. We learn WHDM’s name was Gordon Murphy and he was carrying, among other things: Victoria’s fake passport, some cash, a bottle of pills, a check and a gold pocketwatch. When Em’s back is turned, Aiden deftly steals a motel key he finds on Gordon’s person. But Emily’s got some subterfuge of her own: As Aiden stoops to pick up the body, she slams him over the head with a bottle of wine. (Side note: That’s why I prefer my wine to come out of boxes. It’s just safer.) Hottie McBumponthenoggin wakes up the next day in a Dumpster with a Sky Japan ticket pinned to his chest. (Ha!) The setback doesn’t stop him, though, from investigating Gordon’s motel. With its wood paneling and general sense of despair, the dead man’s room looks like somewhere Twin Peaks’ Bob would’ve awarded four stars on His curiosity piqued by a cheesy motel sign, Aiden rips open the air conditioning unit to find the flight recorder from Victoria’s doomed plane secreted away inside. (Side note: Are flight recorders actually labeled “flight recorder”? Also,  it’s a good thing that sign didn’t say “Pay Per View Movies,” or otherwise we might’ve been subjected to hours of him watching Skinemax’s finest selections – y’know, as research.) Outside, Aiden runs into the motel manager… and it’s Emily’s mom. He pretends to be a detective, she pretends not to know much about Gordon, and she commences freaking out exactly .001 seconds after he leaves. It’s unclear whether or not he has an inkling about her identity.

ON LOCKDOWN | At Grayson Manor, where the family is holed up as it gets its story straight about last episode’s kidnapping, Victoria is irked that Charlotte gifted Amanda and Jack with a $5,000 gift certificate to a posh baby boutique. When Char protests that Amanda is her sister, Victoria shoots back, “Half-sister… if that.” Hmm. What does Victoria know, and when is it going to come out? During this episode, I hoped those answers were going to be “everything” and “in the next scene,” but when Emily was summoned, it was only so Queen Victoria could tell her to stay away from the family – for her “safety,” of course. (Reason #453 I love Emily Thorne: She spends the rest of the episode making up reasons to be at Grayson Manor. Though most of them are in service of her greater mission, I know some of them are just to tick off her former-almost-mother-in-law.) Speaking of that, Emily visits Amanda at her home above the Stowaway and subtly threatens to tell Jack the baby isn’t his (even though we know it is) if she doesn’t deliver a fake David Clarke diary to Charlotte at the upcoming Grayson press conference. After Amanda agrees, Emily runs into Jack downstairs, and he tells her the paternity test results. “I know,” she says, eyebrows climbing up her forehead, into her hairline and down her back in feigned happiness. Aw, it’s too bad Sammy’s gone to that great dog park in the sky; this girl could use a sympathetic hand lick right now.

FEELIN’ LOW | She heads home to meet Nolan, who arrives first and is greeted rather enthusiastically by Aidan, who puts him in a chokehold. Where are those boxing skills now, Noles? “Why does this keep happening to me?” the blonde one rasps out moments after Emily arrives and saves him. He surreptitiously gives her the SIM card he salvaged from Gordon’s phone before going upstairs to prep for his move. Aiden offers her a trade: the flight recorder for Gordon’s stuff. She agrees, quickly pocketing the timepiece – which has a photo of her mom inside its cover — before handing over the rest. Another flashback to Takeda’s School for Those Who Should’ve Just Given Up Their Grudges and Instead Created Pretty Babies Together shows us that Emily and Aiden were “lovers” – Takeda’s word, not mine – but he ditched her when he got a lead on his sister, who was in some kind of trouble. The British hottie even gives her a Last of the Mohicans-style “I will come back for you, I promise.” Sigh. Aiden leaves, and a dejected Emily mopes upstairs to where Nolan is pissily packing. She tells him that Gordon is dead and that she suspects the meds he was carrying – strong antipsychotics – belonged to her mother. You know the Revenger’s had a bad day when she softly tells her much-abused sidekick, “One day I will find a way to thank you.” After he leaves, Em wells up – her version of a full-out breakdown. (Seriously – mixed-martial arts fighters cry with greater frequency than she does.)

NO COMMENT | A whole bunch of crazy happens nearly simultaneously at Victoria’s press conference, so let’s just list it out:
• Amanda does her duty and delivers the fake diary to Charlotte. Charlie apparently took some speed reading lessons while locked up at Cliffside, because mere moments later, she busts into her mom’s sit-down interview with Vanity Fair to declare that Victoria had betrayed Charlotte’s real dad, David Clarke.
• Daniel receives Victoria’s “Veronica Clarke” passport with a note that lets him know that his mom faked her death.
• Emily shows up because… just because.
• Conrad gets a call from the Initiative, which is less than thrilled that Victoria is speaking publicly about Gordon. A woman’s voice informs him: “A course of action has been decided, and it requires your participation. We’ll be in touch.”
• Mistress of improv Victoria tells the gathered members of the press (including my favorite, an intrepid blonde sitting in the front row) that Charlotte is David Clarke’s daughter and that Amanda therefore is part of their family. As they’re all gathered on stage – even Daniel, who’s apparently taken Emily’s advice to beat his mother at her own game – Ashley marvels that the Graysons are “stronger than ever.”
• Conrad later promises the Vanity Fair reporter an exclusive on the upcoming wedding. Please let him not just be blowing smoke – might we actually get a huge spectacle of a Grayson re-marriage later this season? Because I would wholeheartedly Say Yes to That Mess.
• Amanda returns home, where Jack has seen TV footage of her at the press conference even though she told him she was going baby-furniture shopping. “I am committed to our child. I just don’t think I can commit to you,” he says. “Hallelujah! Now go find Em, because she needs a hug and perhaps a pint of Chubby Hubby,” I say.

I JUST CALLED TO SAY… | On her wraparound porch of wrapped-up exposition, Emily and Aiden make sure that we understand that he sent the passport to Daniel. He leaves, and she flashes back to the lesson Takeda wanted her to take away from Aiden’s departure: “Learn to close your heart,” he intones. Dude, I’d say she gets a gold star on that front. We do see a slight crack in her resolve, though, when our girl sits on the floor and listens to a voicemail Kara – Em’s mom — left for Gordon. It’s sweet and fearful, talking about how she is going to go ahead with their plan and shut things down if she doesn’t hear from him soon. As Emily stares at the watch, her mother closes by telling the dead man, “I love you.” In the what what?

Now it’s your turn. What’s your take on Gordon and Kara’s relationship? Would you like Aiden and Em to rekindle their affair, Takeda be damned? Did you love when Nolan introduced Em to Padma as “Emily, my… uh… Emily.” Did you catch the “it’s toast” joke? And we didn’t really get into this because it’s just so silly, but what is up with Declan going from holding jewelry for Trey in the last episode to breaking and entering with him in this one? Seriously! It was like the same day! Hit the comments and sound off!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Jake says:

    Finally revenge is back to jaw dropping fun. I just wish that the old daniel returned. Still don’t get the about shift in character after he had that closed door meeting with Conrad

  2. Gerald says:

    It was on okay episode, some good scenes here and there but mostly filler. So far, I’m not really liking the pacing and the tone of the show this season….

    • tvfan says:

      I still like the show, but you’re right that it seems different. I think that they want to show Emily is out of synch with Grayson family twists and turns. She needs a new plan, but she is hung up on finding her Mom, which seems to conflict with her basic revenge plan.

  3. Irishgirl says:

    Maybe it was just me, but I really wasn’t a fan of Emily in this episode. The only moment I felt sorry for her was when she was listening to her mom’s message. I just don’t see how or if she’s going to be able to redeem herself after all this mess is over. Considering Jack’s reaction to Fauxmanda, I can’t see him being a-ok with all the manipulation Emily’s pulled off over the years. And after her toying with Charlotte, I don’t see there being a relationship after all this. I don’t know.

  4. LJW says:

    I actually like Aiden. Much better for Emily than Daniel and Jack.

  5. Irishgirl says:

    Oh….and I forgot to add that the Declan stealing bit was sooooo lame.

  6. Maryam says:

    Aiden needs to go. How many love interest does Emily need? We already know which way the writers are headed with Emily’s love life. He serves no purpose.

  7. Michael says:

    Nolan remains the best part of the show; his crack about being strangled again and not knowing how to describe Em make him Revenge’s scene stealer supreme.

    The rest of the show is suffering from severe structural problems. Last year was BRILLIANTLY constructed what with Em always being one step ahead evne when twists and turns came down the pike.

    This season is about….what exactly? Is Victoria really the only person who can find Em’s mom? If she’s still so angry at the Grayson’s for killing her dad, why doesn’t she just KILL them?
    (I know, then the show would be over.)

    But this year isn’t holding a candle to last season.

    • KathyB says:

      Agree. This show is starting to remind me a lot of Prison Break, which started out as a great plot with a decent cast and started to lose it after the first season, once it had some success and the writers had to figure out how to create multiple seasons. The conspiracy plot just kept getting bigger and bigger, and the original idea (brother goes to jail to help his innocent brother escape) was lost. And another similarity – there are all these big plot twists but the characters basically end up right back in the same place at the end of the day (Amanda’s here! Amanda’s gone! Now she’s pregnant! Now she’s not!) And wasn’t it better for the Clarkes to have been a decent family that got torn apart by the Graysons, the whole revenge premise? Now, maybe the mom is crazy, or maybe she was involved with the Initiative all along, or maybe the dad was. It is getting to be too much…

  8. I think this episode was really fun. It kind of brought me back to season one with Emily sneaking and taking advantage of all the confusion. Of course I also jumped up and did a fist pump when Jack said he couldn’t commit to Fauxmanda. I seriously can’t stand to see the only kind, loving, honest and decent person in this show in a relationship with a lying, crazy murderer. Not that I’m saying he should be with Emily, just that he shouldn’t be with Fauxmanda. I know that Emily is also a liar, has killed people and is probably dancing on the knife edge of crazy but I also don’t think she’d ever start a relationship with Jack without first coming clean about who she was and everything else. Nolan is also a decent person but he isn’t really kind or honest. He is definitely loyal and I’m glad he is getting a love interest. The crestfallen look on Padma’s face as Nolan raced off to help Em was priceless. As for the Graysons, that is a great big pack of crazy. Conrad and Victoria are going to kill each other and I can’t wait to watch. Poor Charlotte is going to be driven to the nuthouse after this is all done.
    As for the whole Declan debacle. I think the writers have no idea what the hell to do with him at this point. He has no tie to the central story except being Jack’s brother. If they don’t want to devote screen time to him because he isn’t important, fine. That doesn’t mean they slap together an idiotic story about him being stupid enough to commit larceny and incompetent enough to drop ID. SERIOUSLY?
    In closing… Aiden is gorgeous and I could just sit and listen to him talk and be happy with that. I’m pretty sure he is just a red herring but that’s ok, because he is such a pretty red herring.

    • Irishgirl says:

      Ok, I’m drawing a blank, so maybe I’m forgetting something. But when did Emily kill anyone? The only person she came close to killing was the WHM, and she didn’t kill him. Regarding the Jack and Fauxmanda scene, while I don’t like them together, I was disappointed that Jack was so quick to just dismiss her without allowing her to explain things. I mean, as far as Jack knows, this is the first lie she’s ever told him, so I while I liked the breakup, I thought it was out of character for Jack.

      • I can’t recall a specific instance of Emily offing someone but I’m pretty sure it’s out there. Our Revenge master has beaten the ever living crap out of people and I’m sure at some point she’s probably crossed the line and killed them. As for Fauxmanda, she has left Jack time and time again and hidden things from him. She lies to him every day and he feels it even if he doesn’t know it. He is always giving her strange looks and he was constantly worried about what she was hiding before she came back pregnant. I think her sneaking to see Charlotte brought all that uncertainty back for him and he’s just decided that he doesn’t want to be with someone he can’t trust.

    • Love Nolan of course. But why is no one else concerned about this Padma? Is she a plant to spy on Nolan or bring him down. Hope not but????

      • tripoli says:

        She does seem a tad suspicious doesn’t she? Not too sure what her role may be, other than a potential love interest for Nolan, which I’m not really feeling. She’s got some good spunk to her though. She could be rather interesting depending on the story line she gets.

  9. A says:

    Jack and Declan need to be written off the show.

  10. Esther says:

    Personal opinion? Declan’s storyline is dumb. I’m assuming that the guy he stole from is going to bring danger to the situation/bar. Really? Bringing ID to the robbery??? OK – not.

    Victoria is short-sighted. If she believes that telling Emily to “stay away” will work, she’s mistaken. And to think that Daniel forgives her moments after confronting her with the passport?! Um ok, not happening.

    I’m a little confused. If Aiden is back to HELP Emily, why is he hiding anything from her? And why not come clean about what he saw, where he went, and whatnot. I’m having a hard time believing that he didn’t know that he met Emily’s mother. After telling Takeda that he’s going to watch out for Emily (as she pursues the mother angle), one would think that he would become familiar with everything.

    Ok, just my opinion.

    PS – Ashley is still acting like the assistant – clearly she’s not Grayson material.

    • EricVDW says:

      I feel like maybe it will turn out that Declan’s friend planted his ID at the burglary. I mean, he’s not the smartest, but that is too dumb a move, even for him. Maybe the whole break-in was staged to get the Porters connected with that blond dude? I’m not sure why we should care, but that’s where I see that story going.

  11. Clau says:

    Declan is gonna be gay. #gaydaralert

  12. Jenny says:

    Love the addition of Aiden. I so do not see Emily with Jack. Idk why jack and Declan are even there. It seems the ONLY purpose they serve is that of childhood friend and brother of childhood friend. Declan’s story in particular is the worst. Waste of screen time. I feel like this season is all over the place. No real structure… It gets confusing at times piecing everything together. Hope the show finds its footing soon, cause the potential to be GREAT is huge.

    • Ratneck says:

      Agreed. Here, there, and yonder with the show so far this season. Hard for me to follow, altho I have ADHD. I DO enjoy seeing/hearing Aiden, Declan could be the body on the sunken boat for all I care. Sorry, JMO.

  13. nikkie says:

    I want some Victoria/Conrad angry sex. Those two are poison. They always make me laugh. I love this show.

  14. Kendra says:

    If Emily can listen to the white haired man’s voicemail, can’t she also leave an outgoing message for her mother to hear when she called again.

  15. Emily says:

    see this is why i ned to read the recaps, I thought the hotel manager looked familiar, but didn’t realise who, this makes so much more sense now!

  16. Emily says:

    also this has irked me for so long, but does teakda advertise his revenge school? like are they’re enough people in the world as commited/crazy as Emily to warrent takdea training people?

  17. Tj says:

    Love this show! I have no problem with Jack, Declan, Aiden , Fauxamanda any of it… the chaos, the craziness, things not quite seeming to make sense/fit, after what this show treated us to last year I’m willing to trust the show and just enjoy the WHOLE RIDE. ;)

  18. N says:

    Thanks for recapping, Michael! Loved this episode!

    • K2 says:

      Hey, it was Kimberly Roots who recapped this episode. Give this girl her due. With quips like “On her wraparound porch of wrapped-up exposition..” she’s pretty funny!

  19. Alyssa says:

    Did anyone see the preview for next weeks episode? Didn’t it look like Nolan was being stabbed or is that just me?

  20. Katie says:

    Slight letdown this season for me. Emily and Victoria haven’t had a lot of scenes together this season so maybe that is it. As of yet, not all that interested in Emily’s mom and I think they are going to drag that out all season. The story line with Declan is so stupid. He is always looking for the easy score. Nolan is paying for his schooling and Jack has told him he could live on the boat. Best part of this episode for me was the scene where Emily was with Nolan sitting on the bed and she shared some things with him and stated she hoped she could do something for him one day and he quickly touched her arm in a show of support.

    • Irishgirl says:

      Your comment about Jack letting Declan live on the boat reminded me of a question from last night…….but why does Declan have to live on the boat? Jack, Declan, and their dad used to live above the bar. Are there not three bedrooms? I seem to recall they each had their own bedroom, so why does Declan have to move out to the boat??

  21. Andrea says:

    I just didn’t get into this episode for some reason. Nolan was still the best part. I guess I’m not sure what this season is about? Emily finding her mother? The structure of things leaves me confused.

  22. tim says:

    I’m finding it really confusing and it’s starting to make me not care.

  23. maltru says:

    Kimberly- you do get that the hotel sign was significant because it said “Central Air,” which meant there was no reason for a window unit to be in the room, right? Not just because it was a bright and shiny hotel sign?

  24. Me says:

    I kind of want Em to start schooling Daniel in the ways of revenge against his parents. I think he could make a powerful asset to her larger goal. Also Jack and Co. are getting really boring and slowing down the pacing of the show. Is it horrible that I hope that the Grayson’s are instrumental in causing his and his brother’s demise, thereby forcing Em to recommit to revenge on an even more epic scale?

  25. Elyse says:

    LOVED Revenge. but i still hate Jack/Emily. love Emily but hate Jack.

  26. Ahmed. says:

    I don’t know why everyone is being so damn negative of this matter, I think that the episode was better than the previous two episode from the season. I think the show is slowly finding it’s foot. I’m interested to see what’s next for Emily’s relationship with her mom and how Fauxmanda is going to cope being in the Grayson family.

    Things are heating up, for sure!!

  27. Jen says:

    Love this show! Just started watching this season and it really keeps me on the edge of my seat. The scenes with Emily and Victoria are fantastic. I love Nolan and loved his “she’s my…my…my…Emily.”

  28. GS says:

    I know I’m in the minority but I cannot stand Jack (Declan goes without saying)and really wish both would just sail away and get lost. Emily and Daniel should get back together eventually but Aiden would be good for now. Love Nolan having a love interest in Padma although he’s clueless. Emily isn’t as sympathetic this season so I hope they get back to showing us why we root for her. Victoria is getting a little too bitchy for my tastes but it makes for fun tv. But I do love this show!

  29. arianeb says:

    First of all, I called it correctly. The reason WHM did not blow Emily’s cover to the Grayson’s is a close connection to Emily’s mother. Was that Emily’s mother that called Conrad during the press conference?

    A lot of you seem to be missing the big picture with Emily this season. The first 3 episodes of this season have been losses for her. Takeda is right, she is distracted by her search for her mother, and the Graysons are slipping through her fingers and stacking up wins. She didn’t see Victoria faking her death and WHM helping her in ep 1, her plan to take Charlotte away from Victoria backfired in ep 2, attempt #2 to separate Charlotte and Victoria backfired in episode 3, with Victoria calling her bluff. Emily suddenly finds herself back to square 1, with only 3 junk cards left to play: Fauxmanda, the flight recorder, and the fact that WHM is dead.

    I think the season is coming along nicely.

  30. Lynn Scott says:

    I’ll have to rewatch but I don’t recall Victoria mentioning the WHM during the press conference. Who she did mention was David Clark. I assumed that was the “agent transgression” the caller was referring to!

  31. Eliza says:

    1. So glad we get to see some new rooms in the Grayson mansion. For such a big house it was ridiculous that we only ever saw two or three rooms. It was beginning to feel claustrophobic.

    2. The whole Oedipal thing between Daniel and Victoria just keeps getting creepier.

    3. Why hasn’t Emily gone to check out the White Hair Man’s House of Clocks shown last season? Now that he’s dead, it seems the perfect place to check for more clues

    4. Poor Fauxmanda. All she wants is a family and to be loved. I really feel for her and kind of hate Jack for how he’s been treating her.

    5. I think that the “favor” Jack owes the mysterious rich guy will be the reason behind the Amanda sinking.

    6. Ashley’s comment and tone of resignation/disgust about them “being stronger than ever” intrigues me and makes me think we’ll finally begin to learn her story. I think she’s out for revenge against Daniel.

    7. Chemistry ratings: Emily + Jack = 0, Emily + Daniel = 4, Emily + Aiden = 8+

  32. Tom says:

    I’m calling it first: Nolan is the son of Emily’s mother and the White Haired Man (the white haired man doesn’t know it) which is why David Clarke took him under his wing because he was a compassionate man and knew that he was Amanda’s half-brother.

    I also think that (at least for me personally) a lot of people are having a problem seeing Declan with this guy who looks to be hitting on him because he played Serena’s brother Eric who was gay in Gossip Girl. Whenever I saw him with Charlotte, I couldn’t believe that he was straight and now that I see him with this new guy, I keep thinking they’re going to get together.

    • Lynn Scott says:

      Very interesting theory re: Nolan/Amanda. I was wondering how David Clark could have invested in Nolan’s company if Nolan is the same age as (real) Amanda. Afterall, he was arrested when Amanda was a child. How/when would he have given Nolan money for his start-up company.

      • I got the impression that Nolan was somewhere between 10 to 12 years older than Emily/Amanda. I think he said that he was 17 when David Clarke invested in his company.

        • Lynn says:

          Thanks Lauren. I do seem to remeber that from the pilot now that you mention it. But it still doesn’t seen plausible. He doesn’t seem that much older than her. But I guess that’s how it works in TV land.

          • AlanM says:

            The actor is actually 40, if you can believe it. He looks 10 years younger than that, for sure. SO maybe the character is also supposed to be young-looking?

  33. Elaine says:

    Gotta Agree. Declan becoming a thief with no explanation whatsoever (even with one) is just lame. Even Declan holding that jewellery for $500 was lame. Declan’s character is lame. They really should write something smart/good for him or get rid of him. Love Jack but even he has become boring and non-important. Hope that changes soon.

  34. EveatEden says:

    David Thorne? Don’t you mean Clark?

  35. Jen says:

    anyone else assume that we’ve only been introduced to this random theif friend of Declan’s because he’s going to be the dead body in the Amanda in a few episodes? I mean that’s basicaly why Tyler was introduced last season…and he seemed pointless until his demise as well. And if this guy is in cahoots with Declan, who is living on the Amanda, he would have an obvious reason to be aboard the boat.

  36. Grayson says:

    Can we please get rid of Declan? He’s more annoying than Dawn Summers was in seasons five and six of Buffy combined.

  37. Deion says:

    Thank you all. I freaked out thinking I had missed something with Declan, but it seems the writers just assaulted our sense of disbelief when one ep he won’t give this guy the time of day, and the next they are robbing houses together. Jack serves his purpose, he is supposed to be the lawful (maybe neutral) good in this show. Emily is the Chaotic Good The hope of his love keeps Emily from just blowing up Grayson Manor.. She has to have someone to aspire to.

  38. Meredith says:

    I’m confused about the baby situation. Is Amanda’s baby really Jack’s and did Emily lie, or is it not Jack’s?