Remember when The Affair spent half an episode where Maura Tierney’s character was on drugs? Yeah, this was nothing like that.
It’s almost shameful to even compare these two shows, but watching a drunk Annalise dancing, drinking and sharing another awkward, incestuous conversation with Wes reminded me of the characters on The Affair. Just like on Murder, we have very flawed characters on that show, but unlike Murder, we actually care about – and are rooting for – those people. While Viola Davis might still be knocking it out of the park for some (although that’s become questionable for me this season), there’s a point where you stop caring so much, you wouldn’t even care who was dying in three weeks.
Not only is It’s About Frank quite underwhelming in its drunk-Annalise subplot, but also it’s simply a very flawed hour of television. There isn’t even a real plot here, and while I usually hate the weekly cases, this one might have actually needed one. It’s like this show is either completely overstuffed or downright empty, and never consistent in either case.
With the absence of a client for the gang to help, the writers had to explore the show’s more serialized elements – only, those parts are reserved for the flashforwards. We’ve been promised that the stuff that happens in the future are much more exciting (even Bonnie’s Liza Weil said so herself in a recent interview), so we’re left with unentertaining filler at the moment. For example, the reveal that Simon, another awful university student, was the mastermind behind Annalise’s “killer” flyers was an incredibly weak twist that even the episode plays it as an afterthought.
Shockingly, I found that Frank and Bonnie were the highlight of the hour. For once, the show actually gave us two extremely vulnerable characters who, when put in an impossible situation, found comfort in each other’s arms. While I rolled my eyes when Laurel and Wes ended up spilling the beans to Annalise with Bonnie making a melodramatic entrance, I still found that this episode at least did something right and it lasted a whole minute.
– I also really wanted to talk about how this show is still the most negative thing I’ve seen on television, but Bonnie brought that message home better when she calmly asks to cremate her pedophilic father.
– Mary J Blige has a brief scene in the salon as Annalise’s hairdresser. It was nice but didn’t feel like it existed in the show’s world.
– All the Frank flashbacks weren’t very riveting, but we do see a pattern now: Frank has attempted to kill his dad, succeeded to murder Bonnie’s and even admitted to killing Wes’. Does that mean the Mahoney murder is solved?
– With that said, I actually miss Sam. Is that horrible?
– Soraya, the university president, is just a creep now. Is she stalking Annalise to Alcoholics Anonymous or was that a freaky coincidence?
– Loved the drums playing during the montage following Annalise cleaning up all the alcohol in her house. But the dramatic tension as she brought one bottle up to her lips before sucking on the whole thing? Atrocious. When do we expect the show to promote the bottle to series regular?
– Oddly, Michaela blowing up at Simon was satisfying. I hate that guy.
– Glad to see that the Annalise/Wes dynamic is still uncomfortable and gross.
– Michaela is alive in the flashforward! And her mother is…Brett Butler?
– ABC keeps promoting “who is #UnderTheSheet” like crazy, and the cliffhanger reveals it’s a male. What a lazy, uninspired twist. And please be Wes or Nate.
Frank: I can’t go back. Even if she says she’ll forgive me, she can’t. And maybe I don’t have to go back. Maybe neither of us do. Run away with me. You’re not happy in that house. Nobody ever is. But you, out of all, deserve to be. Find some boring town, get normal jobs, make a family. We’d have cute babies, no?
(Bonnie tears up)
Frank: I’m only teasing. You mind if I turn on the TV?
Laurel: Maybe this just means we’re finally free.
Wes: Free of what?
Michaela: (to Simon) Go anywhere near my bag or anyone else’s in this room and your laptop won’t be all you’re missing, you spineless, tiny-balled, whiny excuse of a man.
Let Go by Son Lux
A weak hour devoid of any substance, momentum or entertainment. Can we flash-forward three weeks and get to the good stuff already?