Note: If you’ve already watched the entire season, be sure to check out Chris’ in-depth episode reviews.
Last year, The Affair blew my mind with its unique psychological complexity and impeccable performances. But this was the season The Affair went from a really great show to an absolutely exceptional one.
In fact, season two of The Affair is probably one of my favourite television seasons of all time, and that’s primarily due to the fact that the show added two perspectives (Helen and Cole) to the mix. It’s no secret that I found Maura Teirney to be the show’s MVP last season, and she was simply masterful this year with all the added focus. Helen’s perspective supplied the show with a whole new level of intrigue and dimension, and subsequently transformed her into the most sympathetic character in Noah and Alison’s twisted world.
Speaking of our two “lovebirds”, this was the season Noah morphed into a completely despicable human being. His 30-minute long therapy session towards the end of the season (a stunningly realized scene itself) did wonders in making him somewhat likeable again, while uncovering the details of his troubled past. Still, it’s telling that I don’t root for the show’s core couple, and instead find myself waiting for the moment where it all shatters to pieces.
If I had any complaints, it’s that I could certainly do without the show’s flash-forwards. Sure there’s a gripping mystery at the center of the show (and the answer supplied by the finale was definitely unexpected), but I would be just as happy if The Affair simply focused on the convoluted relationship between its four central characters. The beauty of the show lies in the details and character moments, not the twisty plotting.
Also, that hurricane episode? There are no words.
One of the most captivating and powerful seasons of television I’ve ever watched. I just can’t recommend this show enough.