The 2nd episode of The Affair’s 3rd Season starts one year earlier. Helen (Maura Tierney) and Dr. Vic (Omar Metwally) have intercourse, before heading upstairs. Five minutes later, Helen speaks to her children in the kitchen. Stacey (Abigail Dylan Harrison) complains to her mother that is not allowed to walk to school alone. Trevor (Jason Sand) speaks about an upcoming play. Helen refuses to allow her daughter to walk to school alone, while insulting a neighbor and her parenting skills. After a dig at Donald Trump, Martin (Jake Siciliano) enters and admits he hasn’t studied for his test. Moments later, the kids head out the door. The doctor joins Helen upstairs. Before he leaves for work, he is reminded that they’re having dinner with Whitney (Julia Goldani Telles) later that night.
Later, Helen meets up with a young couple that is interested in selling their property. Helen and her partner, Trish (Anastasia Barzee), try to convince the couple that they can sell well above asking price. Once Trish leaves the room, Helen feeds the couple a few half-baked lies to make them feel bad for Trish. The lies work and the couple agrees to use their services. Afterwards, the pair enjoys themselves on the balcony. Trish tries to convince Helen to allow Vic to move upstairs to her room. Helen quickly shuts down the idea and insists it will never happen. She admits their current setup is perfect. Next, Helen heads to the prison to visit Noah (Dominic West). She discovers that he has been beaten. During their conversation, Helen promises to get Noah moved to another prison.
Gunther (Brendan Fraser) nudges Noah as he walks by. Noah tells Helen he doesn’t want help. He is adamant that he’ll be able to survive his last 9 months. Helen explains why she hasn’t brought the children along and this prompts Noah to tell Helen to stop visiting as well. At the end of the visitation, Helen attempts to give Noah something Stacey made. Gunther checks it out and hands it over. Nonetheless, Noah leaves it on the desk and leaves. Next, Vic and Helen visit Whitney for dinner. They find that Whitney’s dwelling is covered in pornographic imagery. Vic seems to like it, but Helen doesn’t in the least.
They’re also introduced to Whitney’s new boyfriend, Furkat (Jonathan Cake). The guy is a photographer and that explains the nudie pictures. Helen quickly learns that Whitney has stopped going to school in order to work as Furkat’s assistant. She lets Whitney and Furkat know exactly how she feels, but Whitney insists her behavior is just as bad. Eventually, Whitney refers to her father as a murderer. The argument intensifies and Helen reveals she saw Noah earlier. This upsets Vic. Helen attempts to convince her daughter that she doesn’t know everything about the night of the murder. Helen makes up a lie and pretends she could’ve stopped Noah from driving drunk, but didn’t.
Helen complains about having a headache, before making her exit. Vic purchases one of the vagina pictures. The couple travels back home with the vagina between them. Outside of the house, Helen inquires about Vic’s earlier date. She learns it was a young girl, who wanted a residency. Helen becomes jealous and they begin to argue. The argument continues upstairs, where Helen explains she complains that their current arrangement isn’t normal. Vic admits he was never asked what he wanted and only took cues from Helen. Eventually, Vic storms out and returns with his belongings. He jumps in bed beside Helen, before we jump to Alison (Ruth Wilson). Alison rides a train back into Montauk. She takes a cab to her new house. Sean (Deema Aitken) shows her around and gives her a coupon for the Lobster Roll.
After Sean exits, Alison prepares her daughter’s room. She heads to the school and watches as Cole (Joshua Jackson) picks up his daughter. She leaves without saying anything. Alison calls a friend for advice. She is given encouragement and is told she has a right to see her daughter. With that, Alison heads to Lockhart’s Lobster Roll and speaks with Cole in private. Alison explains that she wants to see Joannie (Stella Tapis), but Cole is hesitant. He wonders why Alison disappeared for so longer without contacting them. Cole invites her over and agrees to let her see her daughter later. In the meantime, Alison heads to the post office and speaks with Linda (Jo Twiss). They quickly get caught up, before Alison obtains two stacks of letters with many of them being from Noah.
Next, Alison visits the Lockhart home. She is allowed inside before being ambushed by Luisa (Catalina Sandino Moreno). Luisa completely takes over the conversation and makes it clear Alison will not be allowed to see Joannie. Alison leaves angrily and disappointed. She runs into Oscar (Darren Goldstein) and agrees to share a drink with him to celebrate his wife being pregnant. Oscar explains he was worried about Alison, after she disappeared. She makes a cheesy joke about her joining ISIS, before asking if it has anything to do with her daughter turning four. Alison confirms it did, before leaving Cole told everyone she had lost her mind. Oscar learns about the custody squabble and that Alison signed custody over to Cole. Nonetheless, Oscar insists she can fix that problem with help from a good lawyer.
Alison also explains that her daughter became sick and she pawned her off on Cole, because she thought it was the only way to save her. Later, Alison paints her walls yellow. She takes a shower and begins to read Noah’s letters. She is interrupted by a visitor at the door. Surprisingly, it turns out to be Cole, who has brought along their daughter. Alison thanks Cole, but he insists he is doing it for his daughter. He tells Alison she has 1 hour, before the episode ends.
The Affair Review
Unfortunately, this episode was very difficult to like. We started off with Helen and Vic. I can’t get excited about Vic. It is fairly obvious that relationship will likely end very quickly and Omar Metwally is simply stale. He reminds me of Titus Welliver. They both show very little emotion and deliver flat performances. Helen also became very unlikeable. She completely overlooks her own flaws, while ridiculing her neighbor’s parenting skills. It would almost be laughable, if it wasn’t so realistic.
And of course, this episode made Alison look like a complete fool. You know something has gone awry when the dumbest guy in the show, Oscar, becomes the smartest. Alison didn’t need Oscar to tell her to get a lawyer. And finally, the political references were cheesy. The Trump and ISIS references were unnecessary and ill placed. The campus rape protests from the previous episode actually fit into the narrative. This political rhetoric really served no purpose and felt like a shameless attempt for Showtime and the writers to wave their liberal flags.
Get back to the point and stop going off the rails. Sadly, this was a bad, bad episode. A 5.5 out of 10 is deserved. Catch up with previous recaps of The Affair right now!