Revenge-Surrender-Josh Bowman and Emily VanCamp

On Revenge, Emily is closer than she’s ever been to taking down The Graysons. “Surrender” outlines the 48 hours before the wedding of the century, but not without a few surprises. Although things don’t quite go as planned for Emily, we’re left feeling a little bored.

The Players:

  • Director: Jennifer Getzinger
  • Writer: Joe Fazzio
  • Cast: Emily VanCamp, Madeleine Stowe, Henry Czerny, Josh Bowman, Nick Wechsler, Gabriel Mann, Christa B. Allen, Barry Sloane, Karine Vanasse, Annabelle Stephenson, Nazneen Contractor, Amber Valletta

Episode Title: “Surrender”

As Emily prepares for her final plan to unfold, her prey starts to slip from her grasp.

The Good:

  • That Old Feeling: Lydia’s return brought the hope that she might renew the spice Revenge had during her reign in season one. She immediately abandoned Margaux’s decree for secrecy in favor of sneaking into Grayson Manor to pilfer/destroy Victoria’s wardrobe, push Emily, and record a conversation with Conrad. Even though Conrad and Victoria’s separate rooms are akin to private islands, sharing Conrad’s slice of the house is quite bold. Victoria cares little for her husband, but it’s doubtful she’ll turn a blind eye to the new arrangement. None of this is as explosive as we hoped. Lydia’s last minute discovery of the old Grayson Global photo that incriminates Emily is sure to create some drama next week.
  • Rooting For The Other Guy: When Revenge began, Daniel was a young man who hated his family and everything they stood for. Emily’s scheme has dragged him through their dirty dealings, and although he dabbled in their evil for a time, he might not have without provocation. Still, he’s come out of it more honorable that his parents. Watching Daniel with Sarah makes us long for a time when they could properly rekindle their affection. Although the man is a means to an end, he deserves the happiness Sarah could bring him. As far as Emily is concerned, Daniel’s only crime is being born of the people who betrayed her father. Is it so wrong to hope for a little joy for him too?
  • Unspooling The Thread: We already know about the incriminating evidence on Charlotte’s computer, and now there’s a bracelet to boot. Lydia did Emily a favor by breaking into Victoria’s closet. Lifting the accessory Emily needed was easier when Victoria was distracted. Covering the wristlet with gunshot residue will help, along with the gun being shipped to Victoria’s address. How exactly Emily will trick Victoria into showing up for the reception is now the real question. It’s hard to frame someone for a murder when they aren’t even in attendance for the event. As the big day approaches it should be clear that while Emily’s plan could go right, more than likely she’ll be gunned down by someone else for an entirely different reason. Emily has done so much it would be asinine to try and guess who might shoot her (Charlotte? Daniel? Anyone?) but the real mystery is whether it will help or hurt her aims.

The So-So:

  •  Lies in Wait: Two of the women in Jack’s life ended the night crying uncle, but we’re going to have to call B.S. First, Charlotte conceded to Daniel’s next day wedding at the sight of her brother’s inner strife and Emily’s pregnancy news.  However, Charlotte has been able to read her sister like a book all season, sensing Emily’s ulterior motive and desiring to protect her brother from heartbreak. It’s hard to believe that one stressed out conversation and a baby has put her off the scent. Even more unbelievable was Margaux’s decision to let Conrad’s story go in favor of staying with Jack. They haven’t been together long enough for their bond to trump the coup this story could be for her magazine and her career.  Expect Margaux to renew her ambitions sooner than Jack anticipates.
  • Approval: Emily’s impending marriage to the Grayson heir isn’t the only one we’re hoping goes awry. At this point, it looks like the big secret Aiden roped Nolan into during “Secrecy” was his surprise proposal to Emily. The use of her real name, Amanda Clarke, really drove home the seriousness of the moment, which only made us more concerned. Aiden has long been impetuous, volatile, and uncontrollable. We’ve seen what he’s capable of when things don’t go his way—remember poor Takeda? As of late, Aiden’s been quite helpful to Emily’s plan but in the world of revenge, once someone betrays your trust it’s gone forever. Plus, even though Jack looks adorable with his French distraction, we’ll never stop hoping young Jack and Amanda’s childhood dreams come true.

The Quotable:

  • Aiden: “What do you think she wants this time?” Nolan: What every pretty blonde that comes to the Hamptons wants.  Revenge.”
  • “Really? You’re the one that let me get on that plane. I’d be dead if it wasn’t for your wife’s momentary lapse of evil.”—Lydia

Overall:

“Surrender” was the kind of placeholder episode that aggravates more than it excites. There were a couple noteworthy developments buried in humdrum revelations that were already assumed in the minds of viewers. As we’re on the precipice of the execution of another big plan, we can’t help but wish that Emily was ensnaring more than just Victoria in her web.  However, since the Ice Queen is the woman who betrayed the man she loved while pregnant with his child, she’s as good a place to start as any.

Rating: 7/10

Revenge airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on ABC.

Photo Gallery:

What did you think of this episode?