If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.
Synopsis: Annalise and Nate try to get Nate’s dad a psych evaluation so they can have his murder case retried under an insanity plea; Michaela tries to convince Tegan to give her a chance to earn her trust back. (TV Guide)
Writer: Maisha Closson
Director: Cherie Nowlan
Running Time: 43mins
Airs: Thursdays at 10pm on ABC (United States)/Fridays at 9pm on CTV (Canada)
The lull continues on this week’s episode of How to Get Away With Murder but it looks to be over soon as this episode continued to deliver some revelations about some of the subplots of the season with some of those revelations setting the stage for the episodes to come. This season has been a slow burn so far so hopefully it will be all worth it.
The subplot that dominated the episode was that of Bonnie’s baby. Nate and Annalise knew it was alive but Bonnie had been kept in the dark. The dilemma was whether or not to tell her. Annalise was against telling her and Nate doesn’t give up easily so he dug even deeper. While it didn’t seem that this fazed Annalise at first, this weighed heavily on her. The episode started with her joining Tegan at a salsa club but instead of dancing, Bonnie was all she could think about.
The other big part of the episode was preparing for Nate Sr.’s retrial, more specifically getting the judge to accept an insanity defence. To do so, he would have to take a psych evaluation to prove insanity at the time of the murder he was found guilty for. The best case scenario for him would be being sent to a mental institution. Meanwhile, Oliver was curious as to why Frank would be looking into Gabriel so Frank told him about how he did background checks on all of Annalise’s students.
Spending some quality time with Christopher reminded Annalise of her troubled past with Bonnie. Nate found Bonnie’s sister Julie (Elizabeth Morton) along with a young drug addict. Annalise asked Bonnie out for lunch when Nate called her with the news. He believed that the young man may be her son. Despite this new news, Annalise kept her mouth shut and told Bonnie that she just wanted to have lunch when Bonnie rightfully asked if she wanted anything. In reality, she just needed a file from the DA’s office for Nate Sr.’s case. Before leaving Julie, Nate took the syringe that the young man was using to get tested against Bonnie’s DNA. All these tests were causing a rift with the technician for whom he was in a relationship with.
Oliver discovered that Gabriel smashed somebody’s face in. Pulling from experience with her mother, Laurel found evidence that could help Nate Sr.. An eavesdropping Gabriel shared that his mother also had mental problems. Gabriel continued to be curious when he picked up a file from the DA’s office and asked Bonnie why she was no longer working with Annalise to which she didn’t answer. Meanwhile, it was pretty clear cut as to why Annalise recruited the original Keating 5 in the first place but the question of why Connor weighed heavily on him. Connor found his file and did not like what he saw.
Nate Sr. was having trouble buying in to Annalise’s insanity defense but he inevitably bought in by the time of his psych evaluation. The judge ruled in their favor. Annalise named Connor second chair but he quickly lost to Gabriel after he confronted her with what he discovered in his file. He wanted answers, however, she did not want anything to do with his problems. Nate broke the news to his father that he would be placed in a mental facility that would be better than where he was.
Caplan & Gold were attempting to woe a fast food chain as a new corporate client. The company also happened to be clouded by controversy. Annalise single handedly put them in jeopardy when the CEO tried to touch her hair. Gabriel grandstanded against the fast food company for their treatment of minorities but the law firm needed their money. Michaela had another idea to try and impress Tegan and get the fast food chain which was to blackmail them with a class action lawsuit for their illegal labor practices. Tegan needed proof and put Michaela to work. Tegan had no intention of using Michaela’s research and only wanted to teach her a lesson. She made a much different pitch, recommending that the CEO step down and name her as the head of her legal team.
Gabriel did a web search on Bonnie and found information about Annalise’s trial. Annalise shared with Bonnie what she knew about her baby. The DNA test from the needle wasn’t a match. However, Bonnie seemed more upset that Nate didn’t destroy her file. Annalise vowed to be there for her regardless of what she decided to do.
In flashforward news, Oliver was still missing but Michaela needed to contact Nate who was unavailable while a distraught Annalise returned to her condo. Maybe she did or saw something?
Overall, this was a better episode that helped to set the season back in the right direction by causing a rift between Bonnie and Nate and Annalise and Oliver while continuing to set up Gabriel as a major disruptor. Viola Davis, Jack Falahee, and Liza Weil were all great here. The Caplan & Gold subplot was fun as was the work on the Nate Sr. case. However, the flashforward is still a mystery and this episode failed to shed any light on it. At the end of the day, it will be interested to see how some of these relationships will evolve over the upcoming episodes and as the story inevitably ramps up.