Looks like somebody on the Revenge staff reads this blog because, this week, all my questions were answered. Ok, maybe not all my questions, but it’s a lot more information than we’ve previously had. So now I will pose a few more, just in case they check back again.
First, we got an almost explanation for The Initiative’s goals; and its all wrapped up in carrion. The mysterious abandoned project is a particularly harsh piece of programming with the ability to wipe New York off the grid. The Initiative’s obsessive need for the program paired with its equally obsessive need to own Safe Haven, a disaster relief company, points to a plan to wipe out the power and then sweep and rehabilitate. Why? I have no idea. I also have no idea how crashing a plane once figured into this master plan either, so like I said, not all questions were answered. But it is a concrete plan for a beginning to become concrete evil entity, so I’ll take it.
And The Initiative certainly has evil covered. While their ultimate endgame has yet to be revealed, we do know that it must be pretty important. The lengths everyone (Graysons and Intuitive) went through to cover up the plane crash were understandable. It was hardly necessary to know why the plane had been downed in the first place. The sole focus was the cover-up. But with The Initiative moving into the forefront this season and their planning of a new catastrophe causes us to question just what could be this important. This group is kidnapping people, blackmailing people, and killing people and we still have no idea why. Week after week their despicableness is one upped, and yet we never get the motive behind all the actions.
Last season it was easy to accept the Graysons and their many accomplices as the villains because we understood what they had done wrong and more importantly the reasons behind them. I think it is universally accepted that this second season is less spectacular than the first, and if I were to pinpoint the reason why, this would be my answer. By widening the scope of the show they have attempted to create a giant, overarching villain, but the vagueness of motives and of purpose weakens it, no matter the size. Revenge is better when its smaller, when its Victoria and Emily trading barbs, Emily simply taking down a nemesis, Nolan quipping his way through a cocktail party, and the exploration of the detrimental effects vengeance can have on a happy life.
The best moments of this week’s episode were Victoria up to her old tricks, Nolan proving he’s still the smartest person in the room, and Emily being forced to see her hand in the pain of someone she truly loves. These characters (and their flaws and their pain and their growth) are what makes the show so enjoyable, but too often they are being overshadowed by the overcomplicated plots and the gaping holes that are ignored in favor of more mystery.
The show has become overloaded and too complicated for its own good, but it still has those characters and those moments that give me hope for future seasons. My hope is that this Initiative business gets wrapped up within this season and next season Emily can set her sights back on the Graysons and the people who wronged her in the past.
– Devin Mainville