Well Revenge fans…this time, the season is really over. It seems hard to believe, after all of the hiatuses we were forced to endure (for shame, ABC) to get our fix of Emily and her quest for vengeance. And who could blame us? Last night’s season finale was full of shocks and surprises, with more than enough cliffhangers to leave us all breathless from the suspense. After the jump, I’ll go over some key points in the finale and discuss my predictions for Season 2.
Where we left off…
Emily goes up against the White-Haired Man…and doesn’t kill him.
Honestly, I’m not too surprised by this twist. If Nolan has been right about one thing (and he’s been right about several), it’s that Emily is not a killer. I loved the showcase of her black belt bad-assery, but for her to have made the kill shot when she so clearly had the advantage would have destroyed her base of moral superiority, and also would have killed a lot of the goodwill she has with the audience.
Also, as it became clear toward the end of the episode, WHM has much more of a role to play as we learn more about Americon Initiative and what they’ve done. His continued presence made for one of the best cliffhangers I’ve seen in quite a long time. Speaking of…
In case it wasn’t completely clear by the ominous, edgy music playing as the federal contingent boarded their charter flight for Washington, a brief glimpse of WHM lurking entirely too close to the plane must have been a dead giveaway (see what I did there?) that the plane wouldn’t make it to its destination. When you consider Conrad’s easy acceptance of Lydia’s betrayal and his burning the picture of the two women in his life…well, things don’t look too good.
And let’s discuss Lydia for a moment. As my friend Carrie put it, “Lydia is like a cockroach, she fell off a building and survived.” I don’t think she’s so lucky this time, though, and it was quite a fitting Revenge end for her: she meets her end while sacrificing the man she’s loved for more than a decade in order to do the right thing, which she was coerced to do by her former best friend/lover’s ex-wife. Regardless of the threat looming over Conrad, I’m sure he viewed it as his own small bit of revenge to be free of both women who have betrayed him. So long, lovely Lydia…
Charlotte finally goes too far, in more ways than one.
Poor Charlotte (and I mean that sincerely). I have more than a fair bit of sympathy for Charlotte – often overlooked, used as a pawn in her parents’ schemes and then revealed to be the offspring of her mother’s affair with a dead, convicted conspirator with terrorists, life truly hasn’t been kind to her. Her mid-season spiral hits a low, and she reveals herself to have a bit of Victoria in her, when she publicly humiliates Declan’s economics partner and drives him away – perhaps for good. When Charlotte sees the news report of her mother’s plane crash she immediately calls Declan, for him to scream and hang up the phone. Our last glimpse of Charlotte is of Conrad trying to revive her after she apparently overdosed on pills…
Emily gives back the ring…
Scheming Ashley “reluctantly” tells Daniel about last week’s encounter (okay, snog-fest) between Emily and Jack; when Daniel confronts Emily about it, she readily admits that they kissed and calls him out for becoming what he said he never wanted to be (paraphrased). Daniel is nonplussed, but not terribly argumentative, when Emily takes off her engagement ring and gives it back. Ashley comes to the poolhouse to commiserate (right?), but the appearance of his unlucky bottle of Scotch tells me that this story may not quite be over…
…and goes to Jack…
…where Faux-manda is waiting – with her hugely pregnant belly. What. The. Hell.
Could Emily’s mom be alive?
Once again, Nolan Ross proves that he is the absolute best friend that anybody – especially Emily – could have. Before delivering Conrad’s evidence to the feds, he manages to get past the encryption and back up all of the files to his own system; then, as Emily is mourning the loss of her chance to exonerate her father, he shows up and gives her the biggest OMG moment of all. In the video he plays, Victoria hints that Emily’s mother did not actually die in 1990 as she was raised to believe. The episode ends with Emily telling Nolan, “Let it play.”
So, what does this all mean for Season 2?
Emily getting married?
Okay – first, it’s been widely reported that Season 2 will premiere with Emily’s wedding to an as-yet-unidentified groom. Is she marrying Daniel, Jack, or a new face in the Hamptons? Could it be Nolan? (Okay, not really Nolan…) One of two equally plausible scenarios could play out:
- Jack and Faux-manda may be expecting a baby, but I sense trouble on the horizon for this happy terminally troubled couple. When she inevitably exits stage left (again), and/or if it comes out that the baby isn’t Jack’s, perhaps Jack may realize where his heart truly lies.
- If Daniel thought things were intense this season, news of his mother’s possible death and increasing pressure from his father and the mysterious Americon Initiative may drive Daniel to seek comfort and support where he’s found it so far. Likewise, Emily may find that remaining in the Grayson fold gives her the best possible position from which to find out the truth about her mother.
While my heart is begging for an Emily-Jack marriage, I’m coming down on the side of Emily and Daniel reconciling. Faux-manda may yet prove to be a formidable adversary, particularly where her child is concerned. There’s a lot we don’t know about Faux-manda’s last couple of months, but if we assume she’s been ensconced with Takeda there’s not much likelihood that the baby belongs to anybody else. Most importantly, Emily’s most consistent trait is her pragmatic streak – she’s proven many times over that fulfilling her overarching goal is more important to her than her own happiness.
My brief projection:
- Lydia Davis – dead. As discussed above, Lydia has served her purpose as a character. For her to survive the explosion would take a clean, closed story arc and make it all kinds of messy.
- Queen Victoria – very much alive. Victoria Grayson is no fool, and Conrad’s warnings could hardly have escaped her attention. However, I think the writers will leave us hanging on this one at least through the season premiere. I see Victoria making a rather triumphant entrance at the very end of S1 E1, to the surprise and chagrin of more than one man in her life.
- Charlotte – alive. Charlotte’s overdose was the expected conclusion of her story arc during the last half of the season, but there is so much more the writers can do with her, especially now that Faux-manda is back in the picture: will Charlotte try to build a relationship with the girl she thinks is her sister? How will her relationship with the girl who is her sister play out? Charlotte also has unfinished business with her mother and with Declan, and I would love to see where she goes in the coming season.
The Americon Initiative
I expect this particular plot point to develop verrrrrry slowly, probably stretching into Season 3 – especially since, like my other favorite show Dollhouse, the storytelling has moved from “revenge-y act of the week” to “digging deep to find the truth about the Clarkes and Graysons”. At the very least, WHM will make more than a few appearances, probably kill a couple more people, and hopefully we’ll learn his name (and why he’s obsessed with clocks)… While Victoria hinted at a government connection, there are many good ways this story can go (as well as many bad, so fingers crossed!)
The Mysterious Mrs. Clarke
Who is Emily’s mother? Why did she disappear in 1990, and who did the disappearing? What is her connection to the Americon Initiative?
I am almost positive that we will meet Mrs. Clarke, but it will likely not be until midway through the season (at Emily’s wedding, perhaps) or after. I hardly expect their meeting to be tear-filled and joyous, but it will be interesting to see how Emily reacts to having someone else she presumably loves enter the picture, and how it will affect everything going on around her.
Other things of which I am certain:
- Nolan will continue to look and be fabulous.
- Ashley will get her comeuppance, but not before wreaking her own brand of havoc at Grayson Global and in Daniel’s personal life.
- Emily will continue to impress all of us with both her skills and her flaws.
Season 2 starts on a Sunday in September; until then, you can catch Season 1 episodes on Hulu and pick up the DVD set, available August 21 (or, like me, you can http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=taking-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&asins=B005LAJ212&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&fc1=000000&IS2=1<1=_blank&m=amazon&lc1=0000FF&bc1=000000&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr ” target=”_blank”>preorder on Amazon).
- Crystal Bell: ‘Revenge’ Finale Recap: The Most Shocking Death Ever (huffingtonpost.com)
- Revenge Finale Recap: What a Blowout! (tvline.com)