The Affair Season 5 Episode 3 Review: Do All Roads Lead to Montauk?

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If you hate Noah, then there's a good chance The Affair Season 5 Episode 3 was right up your alley. 

It's almost like we're supposed to feel sorry for him during The Affair Season 5. Are we to care that he's being redeemed? 

It sure seems that way!

Joanie's Business Trip - The Affair

Bringing the two distinctly different versions of events back was the best foot forward. The Affair works best when we're questioning which of the characters at the wheel are telling fibs or just overreacting. 

Given that months have passed since The Affair Season 5 Episode 2, it made sense that the characters would be in different places in life. 

Helen Contemplates Her Future - The Affair Season 5 Episode 3

Helen was getting closer to Sasha, and Noah was trying to wrap his head around the fact that Helen was already starting the process of moving on with Sasha. 

It's not easy to see why Noah would be mad, but he needs to remember that Helen is under no obligation to tell him who she's dating or anything. 

Related: Enjoy UNLIMITED access to thousands of Movies and TV shows with Amazon Prime Video. WATCH ANYWHERE. CANCEL ANYTIME!

That being said, it was fun to witness Noah's reaction to the way Helen was acting in his version of events. 

There's no question about whether Sasha is causing problems here. It's easy to blame everything on Noah, but Sasha knows what he's doing and wants to get closer to Helen. 

Noah is Stunned - The Affair Season 5 Episode 3

It's not a crime, by any means, but it shows that he's more like Noah than he would like us to believe. 

Noah would sell out his first-born if it meant he had success. That's not an exaggeration, but merely an observation. 

Reporter: The early reviews are really good.
Noah: So I hear, I try not to pay attention to those things.
Reporter: I have to admit, I wasn't such a fan of Descent, although clearly the book didn't suffer from lack of fans, but the autobiography of Jack Hunter really moved me. It's a much more vulnerable, mature piece of writing.
Noah: Thanks. I mean, I wrote it in prison, partly, I wish it all was gratifying, but I...
Reporter: You were in prison for killing your brother in law, right?
Noah: Uhh, my ex-wife's brother in law, yeah, but there's plenty of stuff out there about it. I really don't want to make this...
Reporter: No, no, no. It's just that years ago, you were a public school teacher living in Brooklyn. Then, one summer, you wrote a novel that was an overnight sensation, you left your wife and family, you married your mistress, you became suddenly famous. I don't know, let's say you drank a little bit of your own kool-aid? You became increasingly arrogant, self-absorbed, reckless, until one fateful night on the dark roads of Montauk, you hit someone, you fled the scene. I'm going somewhere with this.
Noah: I hope so.
Reporter: A fall from grace. You went to prison, you served time, you lost everything. Now, you're out, you've gone back to teaching underprivileged kids, you have moved to be closer to your family, you seem to be living a quiet life now, you've come full circle, so would you say that the redemption of Noah Solloway is complete?

Noah is starting to lose the movie as a result of things that are going on around the set and his actions. 

Whether he will be able to find a way to worm his way back in is up for debate, but barging into a closed set to yell at Sasha was not the best of moves. 

Helen Wonders About Sasha - The Affair Season 5 Episode 3

Noah must have felt like his world was crashing down around him. It wouldn't have been surprising if he woke up at the end and the entire episode was a dream. 

He had Helen having sex in Sasha's trailer, Janelle telling him she was back with Carl, among other things. 

Related: The Affair Season 5 Episode 2 Review: Say Goodbye to Montauk

The moment Noah told the reporter he was not in a relationship, it felt like he was back up to his old tricks because we were not privy to the information nugget that he had not seen Janelle in months. 

Janelle returning to Carl was quite the surprise (if it's even true) because of the way they were yelling at each other on The Affair Season 5 Episode 2. 

A Surprising Development - The Affair Season 5 Episode 2

However, it was obvious they still shared a strong bond because Janelle turned to him when she felt like giving up the fight for her career. 

In essence, Janelle felt like she was being silenced by the board of directors, and that could be what gave her the nudge to take on a political role. 

You can't see yourself, Noah, and that's why you never get what you want.

Sasha

It's hard to imagine her returning to the narrative because it certainly felt like her part of the story was over. Janelle came into the story as a result of her association with Noah. 

Sanaa Lathan is not one of the main characters, so as much as it would be great to catch up with her, it felt like her story run its course. 

Margaret Stuns Her Daughter - The Affair Season 5 Episode 3

After the way Helen's perspective played out, it seems the characters will be returning to Montauk before the end of the series, and there's something full circle about that. 

Taking the story back to where it all began would be great -- especially because of what we know about Montauk in the future. 

Related: The Affair Ending After Five Seasons

Margaret is proving to be tenacious in her efforts to get Helen and the kids back there as a result of Bruce's condition. 

Helen is living her best life in Los Angeles, and it's going to come crashing down. When it does, expect her to rush back to Montauk with the kids. 

Power Breakfast - The Affair Season 5 Episode 1

Noah seemed up for it after witnessing the way Sasha was with Helen. But, could he, Helen, and the kids realistically live with Margaret and Bruce? 

It's hard to imagine them all under the same roof, but stranger things have happened. Noah wants to make a move for selfish reasons, but it seems he and Helen are poised to get back together. 

Related: The Affair Adds Anna Paquin

The positive about a potential move back to where the story kicked off is that it's possible they will show up in the future storyline -- if only to give Joanie something else to do. 

It's frustrating when the storyline you most want to see is shunned to the final four minutes, but that's exactly what happened with Joanie's future-set perspective. 

Joanie Searches for Meaning - The Affair

On top of that, the character was having sex for half of that time. It's ridiculous that the showrunners feel the need to have Anna Paquin naked for her turn on the show. 

I get it: Sex on TV -- especially a premium cabler -- is nothing new. But after the overly-long scene on The Affair Season 5 Episode 1, this one just felt like a slap in the face. 

Related: Showtime Sets Premiere Dates for Ray Donovan and Shameless

Joanie deserves more time on the screen. Helen and Noah get over 20 minutes each per episode, so it shouldn't be too much to ask for Joanie to have some more time. 

There's something alluring about this global warming-ravaged Montauk. It's a complete 180 to the paradise it's been portrayed as during the current timeline. 

That's all I got, The Affair Fanatics. 

What are your thoughts on the differences between Helen and Noah's perspective? Which parts do you think were real?

Hit the comments below. 

Remember you can watch The Affair online right here via TV Fanatic. 

5.03 Review

Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 3.0 / 5.0 (7 Votes)

Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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The Affair Season 5 Episode 3 Quotes

Reporter: The early reviews are really good.
Noah: So I hear, I try not to pay attention to those things.
Reporter: I have to admit, I wasn't such a fan of Descent, although clearly the book didn't suffer from lack of fans, but the autobiography of Jack Hunter really moved me. It's a much more vulnerable, mature piece of writing.
Noah: Thanks. I mean, I wrote it in prison, partly, I wish it all was gratifying, but I...
Reporter: You were in prison for killing your brother in law, right?
Noah: Uhh, my ex-wife's brother in law, yeah, but there's plenty of stuff out there about it. I really don't want to make this...
Reporter: No, no, no. It's just that years ago, you were a public school teacher living in Brooklyn. Then, one summer, you wrote a novel that was an overnight sensation, you left your wife and family, you married your mistress, you became suddenly famous. I don't know, let's say you drank a little bit of your own kool-aid? You became increasingly arrogant, self-absorbed, reckless, until one fateful night on the dark roads of Montauk, you hit someone, you fled the scene. I'm going somewhere with this.
Noah: I hope so.
Reporter: A fall from grace. You went to prison, you served time, you lost everything. Now, you're out, you've gone back to teaching underprivileged kids, you have moved to be closer to your family, you seem to be living a quiet life now, you've come full circle, so would you say that the redemption of Noah Solloway is complete?

You can't see yourself, Noah, and that's why you never get what you want.

Sasha