TV critic Emily Barker reviews the long awaited revival of A Series of Unfortunate Events on NetflixWritten by Emily Barker on 7th February 2017
Treachery in the Hamptons!
There’s a strange shift in Revenge this week as the Hamptons inhabitants draw together, sensing the trouble ahead
Victoria has taken in the newly awakened Lydia, fresh from her coma and, luckily for Queen Vic, with a good chunk of memory missing. Conrad is moving into a hotel, but Daniel is determined to repair his relationship now that his father is facing a divorce. Tyler and Ashley are growing tired of being model employees and decide it’s time they stop playing nice. While the adults plot and scheme and act out their dramas Declan is preparing for a big date with Charlotte, but with a definite gloom hanging over the Hamptons, the chances of him pulling off a perfect evening out on the ocean are slim.
Nolan, however, has bigger problems. Emily has left him with a mysterious house guest to look after and she comes complete with bloodstains and a slightly deranged look. When Frank Stevens is found dead it doesn’t take long for the computer genius to figure out he has a murderer in his house, but Emily’s otherwise occupied. With Lydia awake, she can’t risk her remembering the old New Year’s Eve photograph before it’s been altered, and with news of Frank’s death about to reach the Hampton’s Emily needs to secure her alibi and get Nolan’s guest out of the country quickly. There’s so much to be done before the police turn up, something’s bound to slip through the net.
It was really good to see Jack and Nolan making amends in this episode, after their bust up over Nolan’s relationship advice. Gabriel Mann’s sulky and childish performance as Ross is slightly adorable and it was amusing to hear him point out Jack’s obviously flawed logic; taking relationship advice from a billionaire with a pool house full of unused bikinis.
The suspense in this episode was fantastic, particularly the delicious moment when Jack realises that he doesn’t know the name of the woman pouring him drinks across Nolan’s pool side bar. It’s a definite forget-to-breathe moment as you watch and wait to see whether she’ll say the words “Amanda Clarke.” The look on Nolan’s face when he realises he’s harbouring the real Emily Thorne is also, absolutely priceless. Real Emily or “Fauxmanda” is wonderfully played and well casted. Margarita Levieva manages to give of a strong independent vibe, whilst also appearing to be easily manipulated and overly-attached to Emily in a way that creates a serious sense of unease. The character’s remarkably well played, but comes across as being a big liability for Emily, and it will be interesting to see how she’s dealt with by our protagonist as the season continues.
Darker, darker and darker still, the members of the Hamptons’ community are circling the black hole of revenge, but who will be next to get dragged in?