Friday, December 19, 2014

What I’m Watching: The Affair

The Affair: Season 1, Episode 9 (A-)

It’s impressive that this show has been able to deliver some of its finest episodes after the summer, recounting the aftermath of this affair and how much of a lingering impact it’s had on its perpetrators. I thought that this show had completely abandoned its format since I must have missed the title card for part one, but it’s still extremely effective for its storytelling, so I see no issue with keeping it even though interviews are, for the most part, over. We got some very important pieces of information in this hour, namely that Allison’s medical instincts may have led directly to her son’s death and that Noah’s daughter is pregnant – by Cole’s brother. That’s a incestual web that is just getting more complicated, but it almost doesn’t matter because of how suddenly and irreversibly certain things are happening. Allison learning from Cole’s mother that the ranch is worthless burst all her hopes for the future instantly, and Cole showing up as she was about to board the train for the city was bold and surprising. The fact that Noah was actually there in the frame but not seen for us until the episode’s closing moment was excellently prolonged, and it makes waiting for next week’s finale incredibly difficult. Noah’s attitude towards putting Allison in a bachelor pad that would never be big enough for two people was far too casual, but then he took a huge leap and, out of nowhere, confessed everything to Helen and told her that he wanted to start the process of separating. Helen didn’t even want to discuss it for a moment, and that means that it’s going to be very hard to come back from this moment of honesty. Where that leaves a second season of this show is a mystery to me, but I’m eager to find out.

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