Revenge, Season 2, Episode 19: “Identity”
Written by Joe Fazzio and Ted Sullivan
Directed by Charlie Stratton
Airs Sundays at 9pm (ET) on ABC
The second half of Revenge season has set right most of the mistakes made early in the season, with “Identity” proving itself to be one of the best episodes this shaky season has to offer.
The beginning of the episode finds all eyes turning to The Falcon. Watching Victoria scramble to hide her secret son from Conrad and the world while Emily and Nolan set about drawing the elusive hacker out into the open, using the Falcon’s own ego against them, is one of the best bits of the night.
Revenge has had a rough season but the biggest and most enjoyable surprise has been watching Nolan (Gabriel Mann) come into his own. His showdown with the Falcon, who turns out to be a woman named Edith, is so wonderfully bizarre and funny that only Nolan could pull it off. Only he could take down a world class hacker over an arcade game. Nolan ultimately getting a win and picking up the red Sharpie is awesome. After losing Padma, if anyone deserves to beat a villain it’s Nolan.
“Identity”’s juiciest moments are when the Grayson family and Emily sit down for a Nightline interview. Conrad’s mission to win political office puts him and his family in the spotlight, the last place a family like the Graysons should be, and Madeline Stowe’s face collapsing as her secret is revealed, a rare crack in her facade, reminds viewers that Victoria actually has a heart, even if it’s a very, very cold one.
The interview also leads Emily and Jack to finally come face to face, in a sense. Their storyline was one of the things that really worked for Revenge when it first started, lending some much needed heart and vulnerability to the show. Unfortunately this season their storyline has been pushed to the backburner with first Emily and Aidan getting together and then Emily trying to get Daniel back. Jack fully turning on Emily is sad though. Emily’s balancing act has always given the show great moments and now it almost seems like this relationship is over.
“Identity” does have some weak moments though, chief among them its highlighting of one of the show’s biggest recurring problems- what to do with increasingly unnecessary characters like Charlotte. Her return to her former bad girl ways is an obvious move and frankly, it’s boring. Maybe engaging in a lesbian kiss with one of her schoolmates in front of the paparazzi at a nightclub isn’t the exact route we were expecting her to take, but given her past attention hungry actions it isn’t all that shocking. It just smacks of desperation. But really, what is there for her to do at this point?
Despite some of its slip ups, “Identity” is a strong outing for Revenge. With the search for Victoria’s son Patrick heating up and Victoria going to Nolan for help, the final two episodes of the season should be an exciting ending.
Final thought on “Identity”: How cool is Nolan’s Driver– inspired scorpion jacket? As if Nolan couldn’t get any cooler.