So, Mason Treadwell connected the dots between Emily and Amanda, right? Figured out that the two women then switched identities? No, of course not; that might have given the plot a hard shove forward in "Penance," and opened up all sorts of new story opportunities -- like Mason and Nolan teaming up on a P.I. blog.
What happened instead is rather lackluster. Mason thinks he knows the big secret: that Emily and Amanda met in juvie, yes, but that the "felonious Sapphic blondes," as he purple-prose-ishly calls them, had an affair, and now Emily's stalking Amanda. Emily parries Mason's allegations by hinting at a libel lawsuit and snarking that "you're up early…for a writer" (ha!), but she's spooked.
The greatest story never told
So is Amanda, who's done taking orders from Emily now that Jack has put a ring on it; Amanda wants to shut Mason up permanently. She's more than happy to let Mason keep believing Emily is stalking her, at least until she sees his Big Bulletin Board o' Conspiracy; then she decides he'd look a lot nattier with a crowbar in his skull. (Ever notice how often it's a crowbar in TV-land? How much prying open of crates do these people do?) Emily averts that catastrophe by inches, but after she sends Amanda away, she tells Mason he missed the real story: "She's not Amanda Clarke." Mason, about to soil himself at how huge that scoop is, breathes, "You are."
But he doesn't end up telling anyone, because Em realizes he's a loose cannon, and sets him up for Gordon's murder and the smithereening of Victoria's plane -- and the only thing that will free him is her confession. Incredibly, Mason agrees to take the fall for everything and believe that Emily will come through for him with a verdict-reversing admission while he beavers away on the Clarke-redeeming book he promised to write in the first place. Uh…huh.
At Castle Grayson, Conrad is nervously awaiting his marching orders from the Initiative; they're sending an "attaché" to his investors' luncheon. The Initiative rep, Helen, clearly expects Conrad and Victoria to produce Kara -- but Kara has bought a plane ticket to Colorado and plans to bail, until Mason bumblingly tips her to the fact that the Graysons probably set up both her husbands. At the luncheon, Daniel is organizing a palace coup at Grayson Global while Kara is disabling most of the security cameras and holding Conrad and Victoria at gunpoint. A torn photo proves, to Kara's horror, that Gordon was responsible for David's death; gunpoint, meanwhile, proves that Conrad still has feelings for his ex-ex-wife, babbling that he framed David because, among other things, "he was stealing my wife." Kara makes them put on blindfolds and kneel down. The Graysons hold hands and prepare to meet death…
The Foxy always rings twice
And of course Foxy Aiden bursts in and chloroforms Kara. They still make chloroform? How vintage! Kara comes to in Emily's car; they keep up the fiction that Aiden is Agent Mathis; give Kara's medication back to her, along with a car and some seed money; and tell her to stay clear of the Graysons for her own safety. Sad strings on the soundtrack as Kara tells Emily to tell Amanda she wishes she'd been a better mother, then leaves in slo-mo.
Foxy's saving butts all over the place -- visiting Nolan and asking him for the cancelled check from David that will 1) prove Grayson Global owns most of NolCorp and 2) thereby save Emily (…right? We know the whole GG-takeover plotline is a MacGuffin, but we wouldn't mind if it made more sense). It'll mean losing the company, basically, but Nolan reluctantly agrees, later telling Emily it's because the Clarkes were the only real family he had. Aw. (Even Emily is touched. It doesn't last long.) By getting the check, Foxy has also saved Daniel's takeover bid; he saves the Graysons from death, of course; and at the end of the episode, he saves Emily's night by waiting for her on her porch for a nice consoling make-out session, which is awesome. Have a drink on us, Foxy. Preferably shirtless.
Groundwork is also laid for a conspiracy to take over the whole waterfront on the part of Kenny the Homeowner and his brother, Nate, who has to warn Kenny not to get too attached to the Porters: "Don't forget what you're doing here." The writing is too coy for a storyline nobody cares about, which Declan wasn't even in (he got exactly no screen time this week, and neither did Charlotte).
Odds and ends
We know soap characters call each other by their first names far more than real people, but Amanda always calls the baby "little Carl," and it's weird. Is his given first name actually "Little"? (That would be amazing.)
Padma, mercifully onscreen for only a minute, promises Nolan she'll still like him if he's not the Nolan Ross. Too bad for her he's shown smooching a dude in the previews.
Josh Bowman's American accent has improved since the first season, but during his pitch to the GG investors, it went roguer than Kara Clarke. We think we heard a "guvnor" in there.
Next time: See above re: Nolan, plus a catfight, and Adrienne Barbeau as Victoria's mom. Cannot wait.
Watch the full episode of "Revenge" right here.
"Revenge" airs Sundays at 9 PM on ABC.