By sheer coincidence, the past two recaps we’ve done have ended with the word “devastated.” Will this week buck the trend? Read on to find out.
And now… Revenge Season 4, Episode 16: “Retaliation.”
Victoria and Lyman storm out of the courthouse, having been told Edward’s will is not going to be declared fraudulent. Vicky isn’t happy with the southern lawyer. She calls Lyman a “neutered pit bull” and kicks him to the curb. Natalie approaches (looking fabulous in purple) and rubs salt in Victoria’s wounds by inviting her to the annual Grayson July 4 bash.
Emily approaches David on the dock and scolds him for accepting the boat as a gift from a Grayson. David promises Ems he’s not looking for trouble and that Natalie seems perfectly nice. Things get awkward when Jack emerges from the boat and David gives them some private time. Jack isn’t friendly.
Louise and Nolan enjoy massages. They chat about the recent goings-on and Louise isn’t surprised that Lyman is working for Victoria. “He’s always been drawn to strong women,” Louise sighs, adding that she believes he’s good at heart. The newlyweds then start gossiping about Emily and Ben, and Louise can tell Noles doesn’t like Emily’s current paramour, because Emily should be with Jack (obviously). We then learn that Jack took a bartending gig at “McGinty’s.”
Hamptons Authenticity Alert: There’s no McGinty’s. No bar. No restaurant. But East Hampton did have a Town Supervisor called William McGintee from 2006–2009.
Ben and Margaux negotiate in her office. She proves that she has information on his ex-wife April by producing video of her waiting tables. Ben reluctantly produces what Margaux asked for—Emily’s birth certificate as Amanda Clarke! Uttering the first smart words he’s ever said, Ben reminds Margaux that most of the “important” people know the truth about Emily/Amanda. But Margaux is confident that when the greater public finds out, she’ll be crucified. “Nice work, Officer Hunter,” she says. Indeed…
But to the surprise of nobody, it was a ruse! Emily and Nolan gave Ben a fake certificate.
Back at the manse, Ben comes in as Nolan and Em rush to locate April. The show finally veers into total sci-fi territory as Nolan is able to bring up a hologram of a bottle of wine with a label from an Upstate New York winery. This, of course, means that April works at a diner upstate and they magically know exactly which one—they have a hologram of a wine bottle, after all. Next, Noles and Ems look up the guy who’s after her, one Wes Perkins—April’s abusive boyfriend following the divorce. Ben thanks them and heads out to get to April before Margaux figures out he gave her a fake certificate. Nolan thinks Emily needs to follow and make sure things go well.
Margaux and Victoria talk about Natalie. Margaux dug up some dirt and found out that Nat bought property in Malibu.
Jack shows up at daycare to pick up Carl but is paged to go to work at McGinty’s. As he walks off, baby Carl starts screaming and crying.
Lyman arrives at Nolan and Louise’s doorstep, looking to make amends. I smell a scam.
Natalie divas out at the staff of the beach club—yelling at them as they prepare for the big party. She notices Victoria at the bar and then starts in with her. Natalie suggests she apply for a job serving hackleback (a witty throwback to a few weeks ago). After Natalie gloats about dating David, she walks out.
Ben drives along and is surprised to see Emily standing in the middle of the road, waiting for him. She convinces him that she’s better at this kind of thing than he is and Ben agrees to bring her along. Later that night, as they drive, Emily asks Ben why he broke up with April. He says it wasn’t true love, blah, blah—typical stuff. The show continues trying to make us think they have a real connection.
At the beach house, Natalie thanks David for dinner. He admits he can’t cook very well and tries to reject her invitation to the big July 4 party, but Natalie insists he come. After she leaves, Victoria knocks on the back door. Victoria warns David that Natalie is up to no good, but he’s not feeling very civil and kills her. Just kidding. No, he just gets angry and tells her to back off.
Ben and Emily are parked in a lot outside the only diner in Upstate New York (how else could they have found it so easily?). Emily’s asleep. Ben sees April get out of her car and walk inside. Ben follows, and is greeted by his ex-wife with a hard slap to the face. Emily walks in and grins at the two of them, amused.
Back in Southampton, Louise plays with Carl as Nolan and Jack have brunch. Nolan offers Jack a job bartending at the club, but Jack says he doesn’t want a handout. Louise then comes up with a fantastic idea—they’ll open a daycare center at the club. Baby Carl would be right nearby whenever Jack is behind the bar! After the two insist, Jack takes the job and offers to work the big party tonight.
Emily plays conflict mediator as Ben and April argue. April—who now goes by Kim—tells the part of the story Ben left out. She apparently came to Ben for advice when she was dating Wes (after their divorce) because he was stealing stuff from a factory in Queens. Ben called in the authorities and Wes got very, very angry, causing April to go into hiding. Emily tells them both she’ll make it better.
In their giant bathroom, Nolan and Louise have their first marital fight over Lyman staying with them. Louise says that Lyman is her baggage. Nolan asks what his baggage is, and she reminds him that he keeps taking his wedding ring off. When she asks him why, he buckles.
David waits for Natalie as she gets ready. When she asks him to fish a mirror out of her bag, he sees a fancy watch and grows quietly suspicious.
At the big partay, Nolan vents to Jack at the bar. Jack is wearing a tight shirt that shows off his muscles. Oh, sorry! Plot first, locker room swanky bar later. Jack asks Nolan if he’s at all attracted to Louise, but Noles admits that he takes his wedding ring off so he’ll get noticed by people he actually wants to sleep with.
Natalie and David enter the party to lots of fanfare. David walks off while Natalie permits a quick interview. When the reporter asks her if David is disturbed by what he endured, and if affects their “relationship,” Natalie says he occasionally seems to drift off, but always comes back to reality. Afterward, Victoria, who heard the exchange, asks Nat if there’s trouble in paradise.
Lyman apologizes to Louise for causing trouble in her marriage. She shrugs. It’s not your fault, she says. She’s just glad to have her brother back in her life.
Wes breaks into the diner to attack April, but finds Emily instead. She punches him and Ben grabs him as he stumbles back.
Margaux and Lyman have a clandestine meeting and we learn that Lyman is Margaux’s spy, and he moved in with Louise to get intel on Nolan!
The local sheriff carts Wes off after taking April/Kim’s statement. She thanks Emily and Ben and awkwardly hugs him.
Natalie brings David to a private room to make some “private fireworks” of their own. They kiss…and Natalie rips the shoulder of her gown. David asks her what she’s doing, and she starts to cry rape! He realizes she set him up. But David’s two steps ahead of her, producing the watch…which was a gift to her from Conrad! That’s right, folks. “Natalie”—whose real name is Bunny—was one of the many secretaries Conrad slept with over the years. David recognized the watch because Lydia had an identical one.
Convinced that Conrad wanted her to have the Grayson fortune after his death, Bunny starved Edward to get him to sign over the estate, even though he wanted to give everything to Victoria. Bunny tells David that taking him down was Conrad’s greatest accomplishment, and that she’s going to finish the job and there’s nothing he can do…except Victoria heard the whole diatribe and recorded it on her phone. Victoria tells Bunny they can go public with this, or just give Vic the entire estate. Now.
Louise walks in on Lyman stealing the information from Nolan’s computer. She is livid and grabs the USB drive. As she storms out of the house, Lyman grabs her, telling his sis that these people are bad news. Louise goes to throw the USB stick into the water, but Lyman violently grabs her. After they struggle, Lyman gets the drive—but falls off the cliff onto the rocks below!
As the party watches the fireworks, David thanks Victoria for helping him. He notes that this is kind of her party now. “Not with this decor,” Victoria grins. The two are officially friends again.
Jack and Carl happily drive to watch the fireworks, but he gets pulled over. The cops want him to take a sobriety test, but he says he hasn’t had a drink all night. Uh oh.
Nolan comes home to find Louise upset by the fire. Louise attempts to tell Nolan about Lyman, but Nolan apologizes to her, saying that Lyman can stay with them. Louise lies and thanks Nolan, saying that Lyman’s passed out in the guest room. Nolan sees something is wrong, but lets it go. As he walks off, Louise looks into the fireplace, clearly traumatized.
Margaux’s henchman approaches and tells her the April thingy didn’t work out, but that the Jack situation is taken care of. Uh-oh…
As Emily and Ben drive home, Emily is impressed with Margaux’s revenging. On the subject of first loves, Ben asks Emily about hers. “Jack!” she cries. “JACK?!” Ben asks. But then he realizes what’s going on as they drive past Jack being arrested for drunk driving—with a ridiculously high BAC level. Ben and Emily rush to see what’s going on as baby Carl screams and cries. Jack freaks out that Carl is being taken away from him (it’s the cops, dude, relax) and is shoved up against his car. Emily and Ben look on, horrified.
Closing Thoughts: Well, that was quite an episode! Margaux appears to have crossed the line into pure evil, but for the most part her plans haven’t worked. This is clearly going to snowball out of control in the next few episodes, and I’m officially enjoying the story again. But I am disappointed that the Natalie story wrapped up so quickly. Gina Torres was a breath of fresh air and will be missed! Now we’ll have to wait until next week’s episode for Jack and Louise’s troubles to be quickly wrapped up and solved.
Also, if you haven’t already heard, Courtney Love is guest starring in a few episodes soon, so keep an eye out for her character “White Gold” and the chaos she’ll surely bring.
Takedowns of the Week: Wes Perkins, Natalie Waters/Bunny, Jack Porter
Performer of the Week: Carl, obviously.