Revenge is back!  Well, Revenge is almost back.  After several weeks off the powers that be compiled a clip show –a crash course on the finer plot points so far.  While it was less entertaining than a truly new episode “Revenge: From the Beginning” was a great opportunity to remind yourself just how far Emily has come in her quest for vengeance.  Just in case you didn’t use the time off from the show to catch up on all the bombshells from the most recent episodes, you have been warned—there are major spoilers ahead. 

The Players:

  • Cast:  Emily VanCamp, Madeleine Stowe, Gabriel Mann, Henry Czerny, Nick Wechsler, Joshua Bowman, Connor Paolo, Ashley Madekwe, Christa B. Allen, James Tupper, Ashton Holmes, Margarita Levieva, Hiroyuki Sanada

Episode Title: “Revenge: From the Beginning”

Amanda Clarke spent her adolescent and teen years being fed a steady diet of lies about her father, David Clarke.  Upon her release from a juvenile detention center, Amanda learns what she knew in her heart as a child: her father wasn’t a terrorist, merely set up to take the fall by the Grayson’s, and the very woman he was in love with, Victoria.  Once she learned the truth, Amada changed her name to Emily Thorne, and set about training and educating herself for the long road of revenge ahead.

Once sufficiently trained Emily (formerly Amanda) set up shop in the Hamptons and set about delving out justice to anyone involved in the conspiracy to frame her father.  Emily was careful to find avenues into the Grayson’s inner circle; first through a friendship with Victoria’s assistant Ashley and then through her relationship with Victoria’s son, Daniel.  Frustrations arise when Daniel’s conniving friend Tyler shows up and things get even more complicated when Emily’s former cellmate Amanda visits the Hamptons.  As the frustrations cause additional problems for the plotting protagonist, Emily’s feelings for her childhood love Jack make life even more complicated.

As Emily systematically destroys the Grayson’s cohorts and closest allies she simultaneously strengthens her ties with the Grayson clan by accepting Daniel Grayson’s marriage proposal.  As life gets even drearier for Victoria and the rest of the Grayson’s, Emily is poised to exact the next devastating part of her revenge.

The Good:

  • Time makes the heart grow fonder and the memory a little foggy:  Though the show was greatly missed, a little refresher on the major plot points wouldn’t hurt.  Emily and Daniel are engaged.  Charlotte’s biological father is David Clarke, making her Emily’s half sister.  Charlotte has also developed a propensity for pill popping thanks to the genetic revelation.  Tyler’s dead; he was shot once in the chest by Daniel in self defense and twice in the back by Satoshi Takeda.  Daniel is in Rikers and charged with Tyler’s murder.  Conrad and Victoria are divorced, but living together to present a united front for Daniel’s impending trial.

The So-So:

  • Jack’s Future:  As the show’s resident punching bag Jack always gets the short end of the stick.  However, the clip show made it clear that sooner rather than later, Jack will be the fall guy for Tyler’s murder.  It’s logical; he was spotted at the scene of the crime, and no matter how innocent he is, that’s pretty suspicious.  Yes, he has to be arrested, but you don’t have to like it.

The Bad:

  • Clip Crazy:  2012 is the year of DVR, Hulu, and streaming episodes on network websites.  The need for a recap episode is few and far between.  And hey, if you’re going to trick everyone’s DVR into recording a “new” episode, the least you could do is give them a sneak peek at the rest of the season, instead of the usual thirty second preview.

Overall:

A clip show is completely pointless, but listening to Emily’s measured monotone evoked cravings for Victoria’s withering glare.  It’s safe to say, everyone’s ready for the show to return.

Rating: 6/10

Revenge airs Wednesday nights at 10pm on ABC.

What did you think of the episode?