Monday, November 12, 2012

Revenge "Penance" Review

Some quick thoughts about last night's Revenge, the seventh episode of the season:

-Emily was back in the center of the action, making sure her plan goes accordingly. Emily's been on the sidelines too much in season two. As Emily goes, so does Revenge. The Graysons are horrible characters even when Emily has them in the palm of her hand. The Graysons storylines sans Emily were dreadful to watch, on par with the James Purefoy mistake of latter season one. Mason Treadwell needed to be removed from high society reporting but without being murdered or threatened into exile on a plush tropical island, with a bank account the size of a MLB bench. Fake Amanda tried to murder Mason, but she failed when Emily arrived in the nick of time to prevent a crowbar from penetrating Mason's skull.

Mason Treadwell's one of my least favorite characters in what is actually a long list of least favorite Revenge characters. The wardrobe is ridiculous, and the acting is outrageous. The previews promised Mason figuring out the identity swap all by his lonesome, which seemed bold for Revenge. Revenge is comfortable in writing the illusion of a major turn in the story. How many season 1 episodes were about Emily being found out until she wasn't, and what we thought would happened turned out to be something else superfluous entirely? Many episodes is the answer to the question. Revenge won't advance the story in a significant way until Emily reveals she's Amanda Clarke to the world, which will happen at some unknown date.

Mason thought Amanda and Emily were lovers in prison, which is a theory stolen from yours truly here in The Foot. I wrote 2-3 paragraphs about the sexual tension between Margarita Levieva and Emily Vancamp last winter. Mason's red thread and puzzle piece board led him to a dead-end. The genius author who hits no.1 on the NYT Best Sellers List noticed the absent tattoo, connected the young women through their time in juvenile prison, and shrugged his shoulders, settling on the 'they're lesbians!' theory. Emily looked as amazed as me sitting on the couch when Mason made his grand statement about Emily's connection to Amanda. Emily said, "No, I'm Amanda Clarke," and then she made him his bitch.

Mason will take the fall for the silver-haired man's death and spend an extended period of time in prison writing the story about the real Amanda Clarke's quest to exact vengeance of the Graysons and any other bastard who helped frame her father, which led to his eventual death in prison. Credit should be given to the writers' room for consistently writing themselves out of explosive situations. Anytime the show's about to becoming exciting and unpredictable, someone must speak up and remind his or her colleagues that the show's about to become exciting and unpredictable. Mason's put down. The wild card role is intercepted by Jennifer Jason Leigh's crazy Kara character.

Emily may plot out her plans like meticulously, but someone will pull a Mason Treadwell and disrupt the best laid ones by informing a mentally unbalanced woman of the Graysons role in David Clarke's downfall. Kara holds Conrad and Victoria at gun-point. The near-death incident brings Conrad and Victoria closer together. Accent Guy takes Kara before she shoots both Graysons in the back of the head. Later, she'll explain her intent to scare the truth out of them. Victoria won't tell Conrad about Daniel's plan to assume control of Grayson Global, not even after they nearly died side by side, because Conrad's tired and not in the mood anything involving his children. I love those plot contrivances: "No, I am tired and need a bath. It'll wait til morning." The other character, who of course desperately wants to tell the one intent on bathing, sits like a statue.

The whole of the Mason story concludes with Emily and Accent Guy kissing because that's what the audience wanted at the end of a potentially seismic episode.

-Daniel's going to assume control of Grayson Global in the next episode, pending drama from Conrad and nonsense from the writers. Daniel's all over the place as a character. I'm waiting for Ashley to raise her middle finger at every Grayson and reveal a massive plot that blows everyone away. Ashley just distracts people. She's literally a pawn, a plot piece; the last significant character moment for her was in a conversation with Emily about the status quo of the Graysons. I thought it'd lead to her doing something about it. She just plans on marrying a Grayson and getting very rich.

-The Initiative element is a bore and unnecessary addition to the show. Bit by bit the Graysons look less guilty in the David Clarke framing. Conrad bluntly stated his reasons for transferring blame to David when the plane crash happened: he was jealous of his wife's affair with him. As The Initiative's role increases, what little quality the show has will decrease. No fictional organization named The Initiative is very good; not even Buffy had a cool Initiative.

-Robin’s boyfriend from How I Met Your Mother was introduced as the bearded man’s brother. I cannot remember the specifics of any Jack content in “Penance.” Jack’s way too happy with the bearded guy for the bar to work out in his favor. It’s just a matter of time until the Porters are screwed by wealthy, and the Amanda sinks. Fake Amanda’s a fire-cracker, though, so the evil brothers might not live to enjoy the fruits of their con.

-#GiftofRevenge aired through the hour. I didn’t bother watching it. I noticed a story developed throughout. The Porter brothers and their girlfriends attended a concert in expensive jackets. I thought about watching the nonsense after the episode as TV With The Foot tries to leave no stone unturned; however, once the concert began, I knew I didn’t miss a thing.

-Revenge will air a new episode in 2 weeks. The American Music Awards are on next Sunday.


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About The Foot

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Originally, I titled the blog Jacob's Foot after the giant foot that Jacob inhabited in LOST. That ended. It became TV With The Foot in 2010. I wrote about a lot of TV.