Guest Review The Affair

The Affair 1×07 – Episode 7

“Sometimes I wonder if it’s him…that this is his way of telling us that if he can’t be here, then we can’t either.”

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There’s really nothing like The Affair on TV right now. Sometimes I feel like the full 60 minutes per episode we get isn’t even enough, and that’s amazing considering how a 40-minute network show can sometimes be a drag to finish.

I’m shocked the writers ended the affair so soon. I’m even more shocked that Helen and Cole found out about it, and while one can argue the reveal wasn’t this bombshell we were expecting, it did lead to some outstanding performances by everyone involved. Dominic West and Maura Tierney’s scenes at the hospital and in the bedroom were terrific. I am loving the psychological effects of this short-lived affair on Noah and Alison’s marriages because it really looks like their marriages are more intriguing than the affair itself.

Alison’s side was so compelling to watch, I felt like it was a movie. I can’t believe this show is now taking place in New York too; is this not the most risk-taking, game-changing TV show ever? Because I wouldn’t have possibly imagined loving Alison in New York, but the look on her face as she arrived and the smile she gave felt so natural. As was her truly heart-breaking scene with Cole on the streets. Cole has always come off as a bit cold, so it was fascinating to watch him finally break down like that and not have it all together for once. It was a really tough scene to watch, especially when he talks about the pain of losing their son.

As always, the two versions of this story colliding is captivating to watch. It sometimes feels like a game of Spot The Differences, the main one here being Helen and how different she looks in each of the two perspectives (I’m digging the nerdy glasses and hilarious overalls, by the way). I still can’t tell if Alison is really happy now with Cole after he’s decided to sell the ranch (take that, mother) and have a baby again or if she still thinks Noah is the man she needs in her life. Either way, the show is not making us want Noah and Alison be together especially during Helen and Noah’s fight when she told him he’s the one who puts all this pressure on himself. This woman is really as perfect as her daughter said.

Sadly, the only parts that felt completely out of place were the flash-forward scenes involving the detective. Usually, the show is clever in adding these bits but this time they were dropped into the episode at complete random moments where they meant no sense at all. It wasn’t Noah or Alison’s version in any of them; these were just events that were happening to remind us that we should care a bit about who killed Scotty. My guess: Whitney.

The show has been moving very quickly these past two episodes, and this speed has been in favor of this show. Really, I can’t stress enough how beautifully engaging The Affair is at this point. What a remarkable masterpiece.

Unfaithful Flings & Bits

– The detective isn’t very smart, is he? I was expecting he wouldn’t find any records on Noah staying at The End. I might be mistaken, but they might have stayed under Alison’s name in a previous episode.

– Cole’s mother, Cherry, is amazing. Except when she’s encouraging her sons to be drug-dealers, of course, or confronting her daughter-in-law about her affair.

– Who is this Leon person Helen “almost” had an affair with? And am I the only one who thinks she and Max really had a thing on the side?

– We all need a friend as good as Max, willing to write a check for ten thousand dollars so quickly. Again, is it because he feels guilty for possibly sleeping with Helen?

– Whatever happened to texting? Why leave a note, Noah? Why?

– Loving the different locations on this show. It’s so much better than being locked to one single place.

– More Spot The Differences: Noah just smiling when Cole says Martin needs attention as opposed to Alison’s version of Noah getting offensive and telling Cole “you get back to me when you have a teenage son”. Says so much about how Alison idolizes Noah as this great father. Or moody, angry person.

– Brilliant touch: Alison’s story starting with her painting the porch and Cole telling her that painting it only makes it look painted rather than better, so the whole thing needs to be replaced. It felt more like that porch railing resembles their marriage rather than it just being a porch.

Adulterous Sayings

Helen: Maybe your age is catching up to your legendary hard-on.

Noah: Maybe it just made me feel better to be seen as someone, something successful. You just see me as potential unfulfilled. You’re waiting for the guy you married to happen.
Helen: Only because you are.

Noah: She was in a very dark place and she came after me pretty hard.
Helen: Oh my god, this is disgusting.

Cole: I’d wake up in the middle of the night, and I’d be sweating, and I’d just feel that darkness bearing down on me and I’d try counting, but this time it just wouldn’t work because it’s too dark and I’d forget the numbers, and I’d forget what order they’re supposed to come in, and the only thing that made it better for me, made it so I could just breathe, just for a second, was you.

Conclusion
Breathtaking, incredible and gripping in every aspect. Same as last week, same as the week before.

Chris Rating
A

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