‘Revenge’: Two Relationships Bite the Dust

Emily VanCamp in "Revenge" (ABC)

Revenge” took a welcome trip to Los Angeles, where the show actually films, allowing the director and set designer to stop attempting to make Manhattan Beach look like the Hamptons in this week’s episode, “Collusion.” Even better, significant things actually happen, with two relationships biting the dust. Let’s get right to the highlights.

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Emanda and Aiden Are Never, Ever Getting Back Together (Except That They Probably Will): At the beginning of the episode, Emanda (Emily VanCamp) is pretending that she is dating Daniel (Josh Bowman) while sneaking around with Aiden (Barry Sloane), if meeting on a public beach constitutes sneaking around. Maybe they should have worn the black masks from last week. The secret lovers with the same sensei are soon at cross purposes. Daniel surprises Emanda by taking her on a “lunch date” to Los Angeles to help him close the deal for Stonehaven, the evil disaster preparedness company. Of course, Emanda’s sectret frenemy Victoria (Madeline Stowe) wants Emanda to prevent Daniel from purchasing the company so that the Initiative will have less power over him. Helen of the Initiative show Aiden video footage of his sister Colleen, without offering much proof that it is current and she is still alive, She gives him an assignment: kill Victoria within 24 hours. If he succeeds, Colleen lives, Otherwise, the sister he has believed was dead for years will actually be dead. This would be a lot more interesting if we actually cared about Colleen or thought there was a chance Victoria would die, but Aiden has no qualms about offing Victoria or keeping his mission secret from Emanda. That gives him some needed character development.

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Aiden’s initial attempt to shoot Victoria is complicated by his inability to get a clean shot because she busy seducing Jason (Dylan Walsh) so that he will buy Stonehaven. Daniel, believing that his mother is attempting to undermine his Big Boy Business Deal out of spite, gets Nolan to instantly dig up dirt proving that Jason was in collusion (note the episode title name) with other companies to raise energy prices after September 11. The CEO is appalled and decides to sell to Grayson, a company which has been embroiled in numerous scandals. The show attempts to claim that she is persuaded by Daniel’s insistence that he is changing Grayson, but it’s not a logical story point. Emanda eventually comes clean to Daniel about dating him at Victoria’s request. He claims he already knee, but was willing to go with it because he liked spending time with Emanda.

Aiden is finally about to shoot Victoria, using a high powered rifle so she won’t know who hit her, when Emanda stops him at the last second, having been tipped off by Nolan who hacked Aiden’s phone and saw the video of Colleen. She persuades him that Helen will be satisfied that Aiden helped Daniel acquire Stonehaven. Instead, the Initiative send him footage of Colleen seemingly dying of a drug overdose. He blames Emanda, saying that if his sister is really dead, than it is her fault. He is so over her. I am still not that invested in their romance, since the entire first season of the show was spent developing Emanda’s relationships with Daniel, Nolan and her supposed true love Jack (Nick Wechsler). So I’d much rather see her reconnect with them and let Aiden be a lone angry assassin who is in the Initiative’s pocket. But I’m sure he’ll soon forgive Emanda when Noaln examines the video and determines it’s fake or Colleen shows up in the Hamptons.

Nolan is On to Padma: Padma finds Nolan  (Gabriel Mann) a dream house, which has a secret passage, Nolan mentions that he wants to showcase it by throwing a Murder Mystery Party, That better be a future episode. Nolan is the only person on this show who enjoys life. When Padma slips and refers to Carrion and a computer program, not a person named Carrie Ann (which the show had been unclear about until now), he realizes that she is working for the Initiative,. Hooray for Nolan being smart! At Emanda’s suggestion, he decides to keep his enemy close, and pretends that he is still lovey dovey. He sets her up to  find a faux Carrion flashdrive, which she eagerly plugs into her flashdrive. You think she’d figure out it’s a fake by by the video game style titles for this super secret program. Nolan films her treachery her via Swan Cam. We also learn that the final section of Carrion exists only in Nolan’s giant brain and that the program can”make the lights go out.” whether this is metaphorical or whether the Iniative wants to create a giant blackout is unclear. But one “Revolution” is enough.

Charlotte Actually Does Something Worth Mentioning: The rest of the Graysons more or less ignore Charlotte’s (Christa B. Allen) eighteenth birthday. It’s hard to blame the since she is so annoying. So she pays them back by legally changing her last name to Clarke, I will probably never say this again: well played Charlotte.

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The Porter-Ryan Storyline Refuses to Die: For a brief shining moment it looks like well finally be free of the Ryan brothers. Alas, the show seems oblivious to how much the audience dislikes this storyline. At least Conrad (Henry Czerny) is involved now so it isn’t as isolated. Jack persuades Matt Duncan, the actual killer of the Ryan brothers’ father to write a confession. Conrad  (Henry Czerny) hands it to them talong with 50 grand. He asks them to leave town. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, guys! Unfortunately, Kenny tells Conrad that if he owns the Stowaway he can get the Waterfront and have Roulette wheels spinning in months. Why Conrad, who is now co-owner of the Stowaway, wouldn’t just throw money at the rest of the Waterfront property owners to accomplish the goal of turning the Hamptons into a mini-Vegas instead of working with Kenny is not explained. Someone needs to kill Kenny now.

Best Quotes:

“My son floats through life on crests of women unable to make his own decisions.” – Victoria explains Daniel to Emanda

“Don’t you know that politicians tend to keep their concubines in the closet.”- Victoria to Conrad about Ashley’s return to work

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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