HTGAWM Recap: The Ohio Players

“Let’s go home. Ohio sucks.”

Oh, if only Annalise or Eve or Rose or even little Christophe had expressed that sentiment in How to Get Away With Murder‘s “10 Years Ago” flashbacks – maybe, just maybe, Wes and his fellow Keating Five cohorts wouldn’t all be worrying about lengthy prison sentences or seven-figure blackmail demands to go along with their crippling student-loan debt. (OK, OK, maybe Laurel thinks Sallie Mae is just a waitress at a diner on the wrong side of the tracks, but given that her dad makes Prof. Keating look as innocuous as Jessica Fletcher riding a bicycle through a coastal Maine village, let’s cut her some slack, too, right?)

But since life doesn’t in any way resemble the title of Cher’s 1989 classic, “Turn Back Time” — none of our central players are going to find ways to take back all those words (and stab wounds) (and gunshots) (and tire tracks) that hurt their friends and frenemies and rivals. So let’s break down what happened during the twisted, twisty and very likely misleading “It’s a Trap,” shall we?

GOING BACK TO OHIO | Laurel — reeling from Frank’s confession about murdering Lila — drops in on Wes and finds him reeling from the enigmatic case file on the decade-old Charles Mahoney case that Annalise left outside his door. They go through boxes of court transcripts and police files and medical examiner reports — and though it looks like everyone agrees it was a suicide, Wes believes his mom was murdered for failing to testify on Mahoney’s behalf, with the crime scene staged as self-inflicted. As we learn at the end of the hour, though, Laurel is holding on to a pilfered page from Cleveland P.D.’s investigation — and it names a prime suspect in Rose’s death: Her son Christophe (aka Wes)! Laurel comes raging back to Philly, interrupts a very important meeting and all but drags Annalise back to her office for a one-on-one. “Did Wes kill his mother?!” she demands to know. And while we know that nothing on HTGAWM is as straightforward as it seems, it’s a damn fine cliffhanger that ranks maybe a notch or two below “Why is your penis on a dead girl’s phone?” Oh, did I mention as Laurel cries about Frank being as bad a person as her father — and wonders if she’s as morally bankrupt as these men — Wes gets all, “You’re a good person”… and they smooch! Yes, we all saw it coming, but now that their lips have locked, I’m not sure if it was titillating or nauseating. I think I might like the duo as brother-sister types, y’know?

THEY’VE HAD THEIR PHIL | Connor comes to Annalise’s for guidance about what to do about the Shooting Night video sent to him at the end of last week’s show, and while she makes him squirm, his eventual use of the word “please” and information that he went back to her to try to prevent her from bleeding out makes her agree to pitch in. She gathers everyone involved in framing Philip and Catherine (aside from the MIA Wes and Laurel) and tells them to “let mama take care of it the way she always does.” And while the source of the video rattles them all with a “send $1 million or I go to the cops” email, in the end Annalise calls the blackmailer’s bluff (at Nate’s suggestion), not meeting his deadline. And the blackmailer (Philip? We still can’t be sure) responds with a video showing Annalise and Nate embracing in her kitchen the night prior. We’ve got a stalker on our hands, folks!

BACK IN THE DAY | We see that 10 years ago, the ambitious Annalise cajoled Rose into providing an alibi for Charles — but it turns out, the alibi was a false one, and Rose pulled out of her court appearance at the last possible minute. So maybe Charles did bludgeon to death his fiancée (who’d been working with the feds to expose Charles and his father’s Madoff-like schemes)? And maybe he put the knife in Rose’s throat for changing her mind? Either way, we get to meet Adam Arkin as Charles’ billionaire dad, and his withering, racially charged put-down of a pregnant Annalise — “don’t give your people a bad name” — makes me think that at some point, we’ll cheer when he meets a hideous fate. (Hey, a guy can hope!)

IN OTHER NEWS | Bonnie breaks it off with Asher (then cries in private). Michaela and Caleb hook up (though his visit to sister Catherine includes a disturbing interlude where she tries to make him think she’s the one who killed their parents). Annalise cooks dinner for Nate — then dumps it down the In-Sink-Erator when he questions her motives. She thinks maybe he’s playing along, but seeking revenge, but he’s pretty convincing when he holds her in his arms and tells her she’s already been forgiven. (Hmmm… could it be Eve that’s videotaping ’em?) Oh, and Connor is thinking about applying to Stanford — and hoping Oliver will move to Cali. with him! B-b-but doesn’t he care who ends up with the Scales of Justice trophy? (Yeah, yeah, that’s soooo Season 1… and it lost its luster once Sam’s grey matter wound up all over it… but I miss the little gal, y’know?)

OK, your turn. What did you think of this week’s HTGAWM? Is it possible Wes actually killed his mom? And do you like a Wes-Laurel romantic pairing or nah? Sound off below!

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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21 Comments
  1. Bandslee Lee says:

    My vote goes to the nauseating end on the Wes/Laurel thing. None of the Keating 5 should be hooking up with each other, IMO. It’s distracting and makes it hard to suspend my disbelief.

  2. Cheyenne says:

    Why on earth would Wes kill his mother?

    • Angela says:

      He has shown violent tendencies already, what with being involved in Sam’s death and shooting Annalise. If he did kill her, maybe he doesn’t need a reason/motive. Maybe he’s just always been naturally messed up.
      .
      But ooh, damn, what a cliffhanger. I agree that it can’t possibly be that straightforward an explanation, but knowing Wes’ history, I wouldn’t exactly be surprised all the same if he’d done it.

      • I think that Wes only “technically” killed his mother. He heard a ruckus (one of Snazzy Britches’ favorite words) and found his mother on the floor with a knife in her neck. As a child not trained in paramedic work, he pulled the knife out, causing his mother to bleed out. How this prompted “Ana-eve” to say, “What have we done?” still is a mystery to me.

  3. laurelnev says:

    Is NOBODY else wondering what happened with Ana’s pregnancy? And if maybe someone else killed Wes’s Mom, and the “What have we done?” line implied “What were we thinking in framing a 12 year old for murder?” I mean, I’ve seen kids throw tantrums when they’re promised TV and then sent to bed…but stabbing Mom instead? I’m thinking there has to be some guilt-related miscarriage or something ahead, which might explain Ana’s relationship with Wes. Maybe in her own mind, she “sacrificed” her own baby to “save” Christophe in some way?

    • JoMarch says:

      Yes, we are, but I just think all will be revealed (as it always is.

    • Jbj says:

      I am fairly certain that she lost the baby. I vaguely remember it coming up in S1 during the fight when she confronts him about the affair…like it was a major turning point in their marriage.

  4. Matt C. says:

    I’m pretty sure Annalise/Eve set it up to make Wes believe he killed his own mother, hence the “What have we done?” line. It would be a little far-fetched if Wes was behind YET another murder/shooting on this show. But other than that, I loved this episode!

  5. soumyajeet98 says:

    Maybe “What have we done?” signifies, them killing Wes’s mom. But what’s the motive, maybe charles mom or dad killed Wes’s mom and framed Wes, and Ann and Eve witnessed it but did nothing out of fear. It’s a long shot but…………..

  6. Ian says:

    Ugh to Wes and Laurel. *Eyeroll* So predictable and boring.

    It’s like HTGAWM has gotten as bad as Scandal in just a season and a half.

  7. Nika says:

    Plizz Laurel and Frank should be together not Laurel and Wes!! Yikes!!!!

  8. Leo says:

    So, Laurel knew Wes is a suspect in his mother’s murder yet continue to smooch him after sharing a story about her father and Frank? Girl, you got issue!
    Is next week the finale? Or penultimate? Man, I don’t want this show to ever end.

    • Ann says:

      The kiss happened the night before she found out that he was a suspect.

      • Angela says:

        True, but then again, she knows he shot Annalise and still kissed him, so…
        .
        As for the Wes/Laurel thing…I dunno, it looks like I’m in the minority of people who kinda like the idea of them together? That kiss wasn’t the most electrifying thing after that sort of buildup, no, but at the same time it kind of fit with the awkwardness of the overall situation.
        .
        But whether they get more intimate or not, I did very much enjoy their scenes together and hope they get more of them. I do think Laurel would be a good, and desperately needed, stable influence for Wes. Though given what she said about Frank and her dad, I certainly wouldn’t blame her for distancing herself from Wes after all this, either.

  9. Jax&Juice's Girl says:

    Okay, that kiss BTW Wes and Laurel was weird!!!!!!!!! I kind of LMAO w/ that this storyline with that Philip guy is getting crazy they better find that SOB…….that’s all I have to say about this ep. plus I don’t think Wes killed his mom if so then why?

  10. JoMarch says:

    I didn’t get the impression that Annalise had pressured Rose into giving a false alibi (as stated in the recap). In every scene Annalise looks as if she was trying to dissuade Rose from giving the testimony, even questioning if Rose had been put up to it. As I was watching it, I found it strange Annalise was trying to discredit the alibi since she was the defense attorney.

  11. Anna says:

    How the hell do multiple stab wounds to the chest get ruled as a suicide? Were the police even working that day?

    • JoMarch says:

      I didn’t get it was multiple stab wounds, but even if it were it could still be suicide. There was a recent suicide in our area where the man stabbed himself multiple times. One stab wound, except to the heart or major artery, wouldn’t kill someone, so multiple stab wounds would be possible. (A high pain threshold coupled with a strong commitment to death would be necessary, I imagine).

      • Angela says:

        Exactly. It’s a very tough thing to pull off, certainly, and not a common method of suicide by any stretch, but I have heard a couple stories about people somehow managing to make it work. I can’t imagine WHY someone would choose such an incredibly dramatic and prolonged way to kill themselves, mind, but I’ve also never been in that frame of mind, so…

  12. Mrsw08 says:

    Calling it now – the racist dad killed the fiancée because they were having an affair/he forced himself on her. He’s setting up his son to take the fall (because, ya know, he’s already Daddy of the Year). So he kills Rose (or has her killed). Definitely don’t think Wes killed her.

    • SURI says:

      I agree with Mrsw08. Wes did not kill her. He found her. Annalise felt bad at the time for contributing to Wes becoming an orphan – that is what she and Famke regretted.