This third episode of “How to Get Away With Murder” saves the show from being a cinematic masturbation session starring Viola Davis. We already know she can act. Now let’s move on. Can the script hold its own without getting all soap opera-ish like other shows orbiting Shondaland?
We get more exposition in this episode about the students: Laurel (not to be confused with Laura) has some spunk not previously revealed. She isn’t all work and no play. She attends a Law Review party at a bar. She flirts with a hot balding Indian brother. (She makes Frank jealous.) Wes is still a crackerjack that still gives Professor Keating the hots. (She keeps giving him opportunities most would argue he doesn’t deserve.) Michaela is the quintessential B.A.P (Black American Princess): Ivy League-educated, ambitious, and far from virginal. Two words: surf board. We also meet her fiancé, Aiden, a cooing romantic who harbors a same-gender-loving secret that gives an extra two snaps to the episode.
When Connor learns that Aiden is Michaela’s fiancé, he outs him. I’m sure he’s broken some tacit rule about running his mouth about this sort of thing. Nevertheless, they did the nasty at boarding school. This sets off a good chunk of the episode with Michaela unraveling. Will her Jack and Jill wedding come tumbling down sugar hill? It’s almost obvious that if it’s in the script that Aiden is bisexual and Connor can’t keep his hands off of him, that this theme probably won’t go away. To the writers’ credit, we get to see a black male character shown as sexually complicated. Too often representations of sexuality are either straight or gay; but a man (or woman) can be both-and, rather than just either-or.
This week’s case is a favor for a friend of a friend. A soccer-mom-type was caught engaged in some kind of illicit sexual act on a park bench. Once released outside the courthouse, she’s apprehended by police and called by another name. She has two identities. The episode then unravels into a predictable reunion of two thrill-seeking, anti-capitalist radicals who subvert the legal system to make out on a bus…somewhere. The embarrassment Annalise Keating feels is palpable. Guess you can’t win them all.
There weren’t many memorable lines in this episode from Viola Davis except when she walks into the president’s office and unabashedly tells him she’ll think about taking the case. It’s a beautiful thing to see a woman in full control of her body and professional decisions. Strutting her fit physique over a chair, she says, “I’ll think about it.”
(Diva has just left the building.)
Later in the episode, we see Viola vulnerable, thirsty for her cop boy-toy, Nate. He does some side detective work on her husband, double-checking if he might have killed the student at Middleton. (Apparently, her husband, Sam, has a reputation for screwing his students.) There’s this dramatic sigh of relief when she finds out his alibi checks-out. Her hand travels Nate’s thigh.
“I miss you.”
“Go home to your husband.” He rebuffs.
I guess this means no more home calls from Nate while the hubby chases a job at Yale.
Next week, Annalise defends Rebecca. This will be interesting since Wes impersonated a legal aid defense lawyer. What hold does this Rebecca have over Wes? Did she give it up to him? Maybe it was the drugs?
Thoughts? What were your highlights and lowlights from this week’s episode?