Returning after a month’s break, the show hopefully offered up a glimpse of what to expect in the second half of the season, by getting back to its roots. Namely, Emily/Daniel, Victoria manipulation, Nolan-isms, and …. Red Sharpie!
The most terrifying thing you will ever see.
Victoria has a plan. She needs to find a way to get Daniel out of the clutches of The Initiative before it’s too late, and she knows that he will never listen to anything she says, so she intends to recruit a certain figure from Daniel’s past … someone with an ass for days with an unhealthy obsession for Daniel’s life. No, not Tyler, he’s dead! She plans to bring Emily back into the family fold, to try and talk some sense into her son.
She invites Emily over for lemonade (won in a hostile takeover of the lemonade stand down the street. Hey, Grayson Global has to rebuild somehow, and if those kids were stupid enough to trade shares for Beiber tickets, that’s their own fault), and they have a typically tense but fruitful meeting. She convinces Emily to give it another go with Daniel, in the hopes that she can help steer him away from the manipulation of The Initiative, and back to the manipulation of his family.
Emily agrees, knowing this is her way back into the family, and as luck would have it, a key figure in her father’s trial is staying with the Graysons for the weekend, and Red Sharpie is chomping at the bit to get some payback.
The Sharpie victim in question is Robert Barnes, who was the judge for David’s trial, and is a current nominee for the Supreme Court. Conrad asks (reasonably) why Barnes would want to come anywhere near their house, and Victoria explains that his wife Patricia heads a “wrongfully accused” charity, and Victoria has arranged a benefit for all those imprisoned unjustly, and because Conrad very nearly fell into that category, it would behoove them to use it as a chance to start rebuilding the Grayson image.
Meanwhile, Emily discusses the Judge Barnes situation with Aiden. She shows him a letter that she thinks was written by the trial court clerk James Palmer and sent to her father in prison. He confesses that he told Barnes the name of the one juror who was going to vote Not Guilty, and the judge used that info to replace the juror. Three days after the letter was sent, Palmer mysteriously died in a subway accident.
Emily sets the Operation: Reconciliation plan in motion, and she and Aiden have a very vocal breakup within earshot of Conrad and Daniel. When she arrives at Grayson manor for dinner with Daniel and the Barnes, everything is set, but an intriguing curve is thrown.
Emily brings up Palmer’s name at dinner, and it elicits the expected “He was a good man” response from Robert, but Patricia’s response is far more personal, as she says, ’His passion for justice was unparallelled.” As Emily watches in growing awareness, Robert grabs Patricia’s hand and squeezes. And squeezes. Emily brings up David’s trial and if the Liberty project has ever tried to investigate if he was wrongfully prosecuted, and Patricia says no, that none of her husband’s decisions have ever come under any scrutiny.
Realizing that something is fishy, Emily does some research and discovers that Patricia has had multiple injuries over the years, with all signs pointing toward spousal abuse, and what’s more, she discovers a photo of a young and radical Patricia at an apartheid protest … with James Palmer. What if it wasn’t James who wrote that fateful letter … what if it was Patricia?
Emily gets her proof at the big benefit, when she approaches Patricia with the letter and tells her that “Amanda” read it when she was incarcerated, and it saved her life. Now maybe, Patricia can use it to save her own life. Patricia takes her advice, and when she gets up to the podium, admits that it was she who wrote the letter, and that her husband helped taint the jury. He is seeking more power, but “the greater the power, the greater the potential for abuse,” and she takes off her coat to reveal her bruised and battered arms.
Robert walks out, knowing his chances of becoming the next Supreme Court Asshat just exploded.
And with that, Emily brings out our old pal and crosses off another target. Daniel stops by that night to ask her to become the Grayson charity head … or something, and she says she’ll think about, and as the two of them walk out on to the porch, Emily notices Victoria watching from her perch, and she manipulates Daniel into kissing her. Victoria is pleased, but Aiden, who’s watching from inside the house … is not.
Welcome back. We missed your geometric judgment
Nolan didn’t have a whole lot to do this episode, except for the usual tech espionage. He hacks into the Grayson Global computers (at Daniel’s insistence) to search for “rogue files,” and finds something interesting for Aiden. He was able to get a phone number from Helen From the Initiative’s phone, and when Aiden calls it, Helen answers and tells him to meet her. She tells Aiden that his sister is still alive, but if he wants to see her again, he’s going to have to do exactly what they say … when the time is right.
Nolan has some strange scenes with Marco, who apparently wants to rekindle their relationship. Nolan is having none of it, though, even when Marco pulls out the big gun … a Thanksgiving Sushi dinner, to make up for the dinner that was ruined all those years ago. Nolan rolls his eyes, but is shocked when Marco presents him with another peace offering – a super secret flash drive with technology that Nolan declares “cyber plutonium.” He refuses to use it, having abandoned the project years ago, but obviously this is going to be big in the future.
In one of the more intriguing cliffhangers, Helen contacts Daniel and tells him that Nolan left a trail of cyber breadcrumbs when he was hacking, and it leads to NolCorp secrets, one of which Daniel should find very interesting. Hmm …
“Wheres the London Fog? I thought you two were attached at the hip.”
“Prince Oedipus just granted me access the to the Grayson Gobal intranet to snoop.”
“B.T. Dubs, I was sorry to hear about your breakup with Remington Steele. Though there really wasn’t room in your sidecar for both of us.”
“Well, bros before hos only works if he’s not still in love with the ho, bro.”
In the Coffee wars, it’s always the innocent who suffer.
Jack and Declan wind up in a heap of trouble this week, as Declan discovers that Teen Wolf dad and Teen Wolf dad’s brother are smuggling drugs in giant bags of coffee beans they’re keeping in the Stowaway cellar.. Really? That’s the big reveal?
Unfortunately, Declan is a bumbling fool, and the TWD brothers discover that he’s found out their secret. Jack has a plan to to tell an old school pal who’s now a cop about the smuggling, but when the police raid the cellar, all they find is … coffee beans. However, when they do raid The Amanda, they find the drugs, and Declan is arrested for smuggling. Jack takes the blame, of course, and is hauled off to jail.
So … what.
An enjoyable episode, but not a whole lot happened to advance the story. Emily and Daniel are back together, but how long before Aiden’s green monster flares up? I’m not sure where the Nolan and And Marco relationship is going (and where was Padma?)
What do you think?