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Revenge

Revenge Review: Forgive and Never Forget

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"Good for Revengey stuff. Sad for you." - Nolan.

The full, public introduction of Jennifer Jason Leigh as Kara Clarke tonight served as yet another Revenge game changer, altering the playing field and expectations, while raising even more questions than it answered.

Kara provides Madeleine Stowe's Victoria with a new type of adversary, a slightly unhinged one with skeletons and secrets galore, made even more delicious by the fact that her agenda isn't understood by anyone else.

Victoria Grayson, speechless, utterly baffled and legitimately unsure what to make of the situation? In that, Revenge has done the unthinkable. You half expected those pruning shears to end up in Kara's back.

The slow-motion hug. The empty expressions on both of their faces as they attempt to size up the other. The dueling motivations neither understands. Who says there isn't room for another sociopath on this show?

Kara and Victoria Hug

Safe to say this wasn't in Vicky's master plan. Under the impression that the white-haired man remains alive and that Kara is feeding him information, she and Conrad hatched a plan to remarry ... for legal reasons.

By tying the knot, they can't be forced to testify against each other if and when the Initiative (or the FBI) comes calling. After Conrad's romantic proposal, there couldn't have been a dry eye in the house. So touching.

The Wedding of the Century takes place on next week's episode, and with enemies both real and perceived trying to undermine the increasingly paranoid Graysons, it should be a memorable affair to say the least.

These Clarke girls really are a Thorne (sorry) in their side.

Kara also impacted Emily profoundly, but the wheels she set in motion with her daughter were emotional as well as tactical. When the memories came flooding back, our once-unflappable girl broke down in tears.

We learned a wealth of information about Kara tonight, through flashbacks and in the present day. She came back looking for WHM (her true love), but was forced to confront her past with David (her first love).

The mother who tried to drown her sought forgiveness in the lie she (and David) lived all of these years. These revelations would be difficult enough to stomach were it not for the FauxManda situation.

Imagine if your long-presumed-dead mother reappeared and you had to use the woman masquerading as you - who just had your own first love's baby, incidentally - to probe her for information? And then that information involved you dying, coming back to life, and fed a 20-year diet of lies? Then finding out mom is actually still alive?

Emily and Kara Photo

If all of those things combined don't register around Infinity times Infinity on the Freak-o-Meter, what does?! It's a lot to take in, and Emily VanCamp really sold her namesake's vulnerable, innocent side tonight.

The good news is that Emily came clean to Amanda about Carl and sought "Forgiveness" of her own. The question (which we'll address more in a second) is where the Emily-Amanda relationship goes next.

There were a bunch of additional, significant developments in what was another solid episode this week, each weaving into the plot separately and in conjunction with the overarching narrative of Season 2:

  1. Padma's request for information about David Clarke's contract. Deliberately or not, she tipped off Daniel to the fact that Grayson Global possibly OWNS HALF OF NOLCORP. Which ties in to ...
  2. Aiden teaming up with Emily to destabilize Grayson Global. Acting as Takeda's proxy, the smooth Mr. Mathis quickly won over Daniel (and Ashley) while keeping close tabs on the hedge fund. One still gets the feeling that there may be more to his connection with Ashley than meets the eye.
  3. That slime Mason Treadwell returning to sniff out the Kara story. No one has figured out the Emily-Amanda switcheroo yet, although Mason is hot on the trail after spotting her scar, or lack thereof.
  4. Kenny buying the Stowaway from Jack. It looks like his plan is coming together, and while it remains to be seen what his true motivation is, you can expect the consequences to be far-reaching.
  5. Nolan was the man. Pretty much goes without saying.

Which of these storylines do you find most significant, and how will they play out in the coming weeks? Before you weigh in with your predictions, theories and views, take a look at next week's promo:

What did you think of tonight's Revenge? Discuss in the comments below!

Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
  • 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (287 Votes)

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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Honestly, I loved the look Charlotte gave when Victoria introduced her to Kara. That was priceless!!!

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(continued)
and I was SO glad to see her do the right thing. I think she can honor her father and still be revengey :) I don't think Padma is up to evil. I think that's a red herring. Nolan believed Ems. He's just being strategic. Padma doesn't know he's on to her, so he can get more info that way. Next week shows Daniel asking Ems about what it would have been like if they'd stuck it out. Maybe Ems will be the one to prevent a takeover of Nolcorp (btw the 49% from her could be controlling if they have already invested other %ages to total more than 51%).

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Emily is going to have Aiden's HEAD for basically handing Nolcorp over on a silver platter (FYI even if the stocks were sold, it was probably SO much $ she can live off of the interest). I don't think Aiden is up to evil though, I think it is long game. AND, I bet he is betting on Daniel to be manipulat-able, which I think he is. Maybe Daniel will do a different thing that Aiden suggests - owning the company was just the carrot. Heartbreaking talk in the car "I can't believe she didn't recognize me." Ems: "I can't imagine.". :( I can't help but think Kara knows it's her. But then again, people can change a LOT over time so who knows. I didn't think Fauxmanda would forgive until she realized her own failings - I seduced him even when you loved him (she knew he was her lifelong childhood love) and it was unfair all around. And Ems' motives, while not selfless, were understandable and a little sad. I think they have a neat potential here, and I was SO glad to see her do the right thing. I think she can honor her father and still be revengey :) I don't think Padma is up to evil. I think that's a red herring.

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Victoria and Grayson: I love their games. I'll love it even more when it will come bite them in the ass :p Kara: she can hold her own against Victoria, that alone is enough to love her. Can't wait to see what relationship she'll have with Emily, and when she'll know the truth.

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Emily - Amanda : I love to see how their relationship changed from when Fauxmanda was first introduced. I'm really looking forward to how their friendship will evolve after their talk. Mason: one of the things I wanted to see this season was someone investigating one of the girl's identity. And since it's Mason, it's possible that he won't be killed off the minute he discovers the switch. Maybe even help Emily in her revenge for a little while. Padma: I still don't feel her romance with Nolan, it still feels forced. Maybe that's why I'm a bit paranoid about her and her intentions. Aiden: still don't know what to think about him. Still feel like set up episodes, can't wait untill the sh*t hits the fan at NolCorp or Grayson Global. I'd love to see Emily come to Nolan's help against Aiden. She doesn't act often like a friend, so I hope she'll be given the opportunity to show her true loyalties. Victoria and Grayson: I love their games. I'll love it even more when it will come bite them in the ass :p Kara: she can hold her own against Victoria, that alone is enough to love her. Can't wait to see what relationship she'll have with Emily, and when she'll know the truth.

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Nolan looked so suave tonight! He is so wonderful. And Emily seems to look more beautiful each week... fauxmanda was glowing too! I wonder what the man trying to by Jack's bar is after... It does seem weird that mother doesn't recognise daughter... they are alot more similar looking then fauxManda. I can't wait for the scene where Mason gets properly taken down! Going to be awesome! A bit of a tumble to Ashley wouldn't hurt either... I LOVE every scene with Victoria and Conrad, they have this razor sharp wit, and this awesome chemistry... they are so fun to watch!

Danielle50

I swear Aiden and Daniel bet not mess with Nolan. Then they do not own half because. Emily was only had 49% of Nolcorps. Watching Nolan and Emily last night made me miss them and why wouldn't Nolan listen to Emily about Padma because I do not think she is innocent.

Marisa1983

I was happy at the end that Emily came clean with Amanda, but mostly when Amanda admitted that she knew Emily had feelings for Jack and she seduced him anyway. I always hated her for that, but tonight I sympathized with her, for all she's been through, even though she was responsible for it. I remember last year Emily was trying to protect her and send her away, but she played with fire and was careless and wanted to annoy Emily. But this season she seems to be redeeming herself.

Marisa1983

@Shana, it disturbed me too that she didn't recognize Emily as her daughter. Don't they say a mother always recognize her child? I know she grew up but still...

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by the way, i love emily's smile in the promo. so "revengy" haha