Revenge came to a bittersweet end on Sunday, but we’re not done with it yet! Without further ado, we present our fist and last Revenge Awards—ABC’s best and worst of the faux Hamptons.
In many ways, this foppish computer whiz represents the heart and soul of Revenge. In addition to humanizing a cast of often cold-as-ice characters, Nolan’s sense of humor, endless loyalty and infectious personality was a bright spot in a very dark show. He never got the romance he deserved, but actor Gabriel Mann sold even the most boring scripts.
Charlotte Clarke (formerly Grayson)
A poorly defined supporting player from the start, Charlotte went from spoiled rich girl to smart young woman to spoiled rich girl to bitchy brat to psychotic and back again. While Christa B. Allen tried to give Charlotte a sense of consistency, the haphazard handling of the character only seemed to escalate until she was shipped off to rehab for most of the final season.
Murder at the Fire and Ice Ball
The show’s very first mystery kept us guessing until the middle of Season 1, when Tyler Barrol’s body was discovered facedown on the beach at Emily and Daniel’s engagement party. It was a powerful turning point for the season and marked the beginning of Daniel’s descent into darkness, and the moment Emily’s tight grip on the situation began to loosen.
In a story so ill-conceived, the writers didn’t even know how to resolve it, this shadowy organization dominated much of Season 2 and sent the show’s ratings into steady decline. With murky logic and incomprehensible explanations, the only thing to do was to turn it into a punchline from Emily: “Let’s never say the words Carrion or Initiative again.”
BEST RECURRING CHARACTER
Snarky, colorful and slimy, we couldn’t get enough of Mason. Anyone who likens themselves to Oscar Wilde and keeps martini glasses and olives in his mobile home fridge is OK in our book.
A self-proclaimed prolific writer that nobody ever seemed to respect, Mason is a character we wish became a regular. Emily took great pleasure in torching his life’s work and the we loved his continued attempts at getting back at her and the Graysons. Mason also has the distinction of being taken down more than once: He got the red Sharpie treatment in Season 1 and in Season 2, when he was framed for the White Haired Man’s murder.
Emily and Daniel
Emily and Jack were endgame, sure, but her most complicated and interesting romance was with Daniel. We were never quite sure what Emily’s intentions were with him, and the crazy dysfunction that led to Daniel shooting her on their wedding night was must-see TV. And his death scene? Brilliant. (Read about it below)
Nolan and Padma
What do you do when you have a fabulous character that’s a hit with the LGBT crowd and is portrayed by an actor who has chemistry with everyone? Apparently you pair him with a milquetoast woman in a dull story about finances and hope for the best. Of all the interesting directions Nolan could have gone in Season 2, having him fall for a plain Jane with no personality was definitely not the best.
BEST DEATH SCENE
Daniel’s final story arc came to a poignant and cathartic end when the young heir—who had finally decided to distance himself from his crazy family and take responsibility for his life—took a bullet meant for Emily. As he died in her arms, Emily tearfully admitted that she did in fact care for him. “I know,” he said peacefully. It was a beautiful moment and one that brought Josh Bowman’s character full circle.
WORST DEATH SCENE
Padma was built up as Nolan’s great love for half of Season 2 before she became Initiative cannon fodder. After Padma disappeared for weeks, Aiden finally found her body in a darkened room (in the Initiative offices? It was never made clear) and murdered the Initiative henchman Fisk in retaliation. Don’t remember? Don’t care? Likewise.
Sammy dies in Jack and Emily’s arms
A dog dies of old age in the arms of the two people that he loved the most. ’Nuff said.
MOST SHOCKING TWIST
Emily might have Victoria’s heart
Emily got her happy ending, but was startled by a nightmare in which Charlotte signed off on having her receive Victoria’s heart in a life-saving transplant. Of course, it was heavily hinted that this was no dream and actually happened, which gave us one more wicked, devilish twist as Emily and Jack live (sort of) happily ever after.
MOST OBVIOUS TWIST
Victoria’s fakes her death in the fire
Maybe it’s because faked deaths are a soap trope, or maybe it’s because of the deliberate way the scenes were presented, but we were pretty sure Victoria didn’t really die when she blew up Grayson Manor. But while we knew the writers wouldn’t kill one of the show’s two leading ladies off before Revenge concluded, it did provide us with a great story for the final episodes.
Nolan tells Emily her mother’s alive
A cool, unexpected final reveal in a season finale full of shockers, Emily discovering that her long-thought-dead mom was still alive left us on the edge of our seats. Unfortunately, the follow-up didn’t quite deliver.
BIGGEST WASTE OF POTENTIAL
Kara Clarke comes to the Hamptons
Emily mother was the buzziest story leading into Season 2: Who would play her? What had she been doing all this time? Was she good or evil? Unfortunately, all of those answers proved disappointing. The talented Jennifer Jason Leigh played Kara as an ambiguous, disaffected woman on mood stabilizers. She never learned the truth about Emily, she never revealed any shocking secrets and, after a rushed exit, she was never heard from again.
Before we go, we have a few more lesser, but well-deserved awards. Think of them as those Oscars the Academy hands out during commercial breaks.
Best Wardrobe: Nolan Ross
Scariest Smile: Victoria Grayson
Best Silent Acting: Carl Porter
Best Arms: Jack Porter
Best Sensei: Takeda
Worst Beard: David Clarke
Biggest Pregnant Belly: Fauxmanda
Best Narration: Emily Thorne
Most Horrific by Firelight: Aiden
Most Intimidating Hair: Margaux LeMarchal
Best Episode Title: “Revolution”
Best Bod (in general): Jack Porter
Most Unlucky: Lydia Davis
Biggest WTF Moment: Waterboarding as therapy
Best Faux-Hamptons Show Ever: Revenge
This wraps up our coverage of Revenge, folks! It’s been a pleasure recapping and discussing our favorite primetime soap these past two seasons. Stay tuned to DansPapers.com in the future when we cover Season 2 of Showtime’s The Affair, as well as the upcoming Netflix series Montauk in 2016. Have a great summer!