The Affair Episode 2, Season 3 – With perspectives from Helen and Alison this week, and events happening one year earlier than last week’s episode, we find both women are broken. Helen is struggling with Noah, the kids and her odd relationship with Vik. Alison is returning to Montauk after an abrupt and mysterious departure, six months earlier.
Review and recap The Affair Episode 2, Season 3
Let me get this out of the way: If there is any possible way to get Furkat, Noah, and Bruce Butler in the same scene, writers of The Affair please, do it!
Helen has a new job in real estate, has Dr. Vik Ullah living in the basement with benefits, and, apparently much to Noah’s irritation has been visiting the prison without the children. Noah flat out tells Helen that unless she brings the kids by, he’s not at all interested in her solo visits.
Noah’s in rough shape, with a bruised and swollen eye. Helen mentions a past incident where his wrist was injured and suggests that it was Gunther (or “fatty over there” as Helen calls him), who is responsible for Noah’s injuries. I wonder if Gunther is a random psychopath, and/or a former resident of Montauk, and/or the father/brother/husband of a past Noah Solloway conquest. In other words, does he beat on Noah for the fun of it, or does he have another motive? Or is Noah being brutalized by another inmate?
If Alison’s perspective is to be trusted, Noah’s indifference to Helen is because he is still in love with Alison. There was evidence of his continuing feelings for Alison in episode one – he leaves her a voicemail message, and in a flashback to prison, we see her photograph taped to his wall. In this episode, when Alison goes to post office to pick up her mail, there are two stacks of letters from Noah.
The night of Scotty Lockhart’s death is still the cause for lies and secrets over two and a half years later: the Solloway children believe their Dad to be guilty of manslaughter; Helen believes that Noah went to jail to protect her and the kids; only Alison and Noah know that it was Alison who pushed Scotty into the path of the car (I’m pretty sure she just meant to push him away, not kill him).
Alison’s story is even more sad than Helen’s. She had a breakdown when Joannie’s 4th birthday (the age at which Gabe died) coincided with an illness and a fever that wouldn’t break. Alison brought Joannie to Cole and Luisa’s and then disappeared without a word. At first I thought her absence was a complete mystery. Luisa remains very calm while she points out how irresponsible Alison was and how traumatizing it was for Joannie to have her mother disappear. Had she told Cole and Luisa what her plans were, it would have been easier for them to handle Joannie’s questions. It seems they went to great lengths to try and track Alison down. But when Cole and Luisa talk about having legal custody and no one forcing Alison to sign the documents – it seems that maybe they were in contact after she left. Later when Alison is talking to Oscar, she mentions signing the custody papers at the institute.
Yes! We get an appearance from Oscar, who gives us exposition on what the trigger was for Alison. A trigger that is completely understandable though not enough to get her off the hook for going dark and leaving her child for six months.
The highlight of Episode 2 is Helen and Vik going to visit Whitney and her new boyfriend, the much older artist, Furcat – it was a smorgasbord of awkwardness, only slightly (and I mean just ever so slightly) lessened when it was determined that Whitney was not the subject of any of Furcat’s “art.” That Vik bought one of Furcat’s pieces…I just don’t know.
So look at the sad state of women of The Affair: Whitney is essentially dating her father; Alison has behaved like Athena; and Helen is juggling holding the torch for Noah while taking the next (sad) step in her relationship with Vik.
The Affair Episode 2, Season 3 odds and ends:
What’s with the comments about the found earrings from Mexico? Were the earrings a topic of conversation before (in a previous season)?
“Which Dad is worse dickhead banker or convicted felon?”
“They want orderly, they want sleek –everything their life isn’t.”
I don’t think I like any of the characters in The Affair, but I am fascinated by them. I find Cole and Luisa the most sympathetic of all the characters.
Furkat = “Youthful pretention – and then it stuck”
Whitney scores with the best line of the episode: “Honestly you’d have to bring your own waterboard to f*ck them up more than my Dad did.”
All things considered, Cole handles Alison’s return pretty well. Luisa seems to have been good for him. Luisa handles things very well too. She’s the one who gives us the timeline that Alison didn’t tell Cole Joannie was his until she was two years old.
“Did you join ISIS? Did you get kidnapped? Did you fall in love with a sailor?”
Could it be that this season might be about Alison having to make a choice between Noah and Joannie?
Other episodes of The Affair reviewed on TV Eskimo:
Characters and cast of The Affair Season 3 Episode 2 include:
Noah Solloway – Dominic West (300, The Wire, Chicago, John Carter, The Square, The Hour, Hannibal Rising, 28 Days)
Alison Bailey – Ruth Wilson (The Lone Ranger, Locke, Saving Mr. Banks, Luther, Jane Eyre)
Cole Lockhart – Joshua Jackson (D2: The Mighty Ducks, Dawson’s Creek, Fringe, The Skulls, Gossip)
Helen Solloway – Maura Tierney (ER, Liar Liar, NewsRadio, Insomnia, The Good Wife, Rescue Me, Primal Fear)
Luisa – Catalina Sandino Moreno (Maria Full of Grace, Che: Part Two, American Gothic, Falling Skies, A Most Violent Year, The Bridge, Fast Food Nation)
Dr. Vik Ullah – Omar Metwally (Munich, Non-Stop, Rendition, Mr. Robot, The Slap, Complete Unknown)
Whitney Solloway – Julia Golden Telles (Bunheads, Any Other Friday, Nurse Jackie)
Trevor Solloway – Jadon Sand (The Lego Movie, Frozen, Jake and the Never Land Pirates)
Martin Solloway – Jake Siciliano (Shame, The Taking of Pelham 123, Solitary Man)
Gunther – Brendan Fraser (The Mummy, Texas Rising, Bedazzled, The Quiet American)
Oscar Hodges – Darren Goldstein (The Girl on the Train, American Odyssey, Rubicon, Damages)
Furkat – Jonathan Cake (First Knight, Diamond Girl, Out of the Ashes, Doll & Em)