With this second installment of Shondaland’s newest show, I think we get a lot more lay
of the land for characters and plot with suggestions of how this series will unravel. It is
now apparent that “How to Get Away with Murder” applies on multiple levels: Annalise
Keating practices this strategy daily as a defense attorney and a criminal law professor;
there’s the murder cover up that the five students are entangled in (that we find out is
initiated by Wes on account of his building-mate and possible love interest, Rebecca);
and there’s the suggestion that Annalise’s husband, Sam, is entangled in a high profile
murder of a student of Middleton.
This triple murder plotline keeps the episodes juicy, but I have to admit that the plot
offers very little surprise and given the predictability thus far, could backfire. The real
payoff (for me) in watching this show is the acting. To watch Viola Davis’ impeccable
timing is to see a master actor at work: the tear that rolls down her eye as she turns over
from making love to her (likely murderous) husband. The way that she can say a line and
communicate so much. The vulnerable manner that she displays towards Nate (her ex-boyfriend.) This is all great acting: a rare commodity for a network television show.
But I do have some questions.
What’s up with Wes Gibbon’s voice? He sounds like a prepubescent Disney channel
actor not a law student in this shark tank of a classroom.
Will we ever see Viola Davis as both vulnerable and sexy at the same time? The love
scene with her husband was robotic, perfunctory, at best. Even if we’re supposed to
believe that she’s not “in love” with him, shouldn’t she at least be able to fake it so
Sam thinks his wife likes to have sex with him? While we’re on the topic, the dynamics
between Sam and Annalise are confusing. Why would she marry a person like him? She
seems empowered enough to fly solo. Why are they an item? When will the writers give the black law student, Michaela, some real lines? I believe she was referred to as a prom queen during the review of the crime scene early on in the episode.
It’s only a matter of time before the cat gets out of the bag about the romantic affair
between Sam and Bonnie, one of Annalise’s law associates. What makes the acting so
good in this show is that so much is said via facial expressions.
In next week’s episode it appears Annalise’s firm is hired to defend the university in the
crime that entangles Sam (Annalise’s husband), and apparently the five law students who, out of friendship to Wes Gibbon, are all trying to protect Rebecca. Feels weird that we
already know what’s going down next week.
What did you all think about this episode?