How to Get Away with Murder review: Red herrings everywhere


In a rushed episode of How to Get Away with Murder, plot points are picked up and discarded so quickly that they don’t seem to matter.

After last night’s episode, How to Get Away with Murder has one hour left to presumably wrap up what it can of this season’s storylines, attempt to tease season 6 (and thus betting on a renewal), and generally put together  a good plot. After “Make Me the Enemy,” that looks like it might be in doubt.

Tegan and Annalise are teaming up once again to expose Emmett’s possible betrayal — or at least, trying to figure out how to do it. As Tegan points out, Annalise and Emmett have chemistry … and in walks Annalise with a combination of leather and lace to talk to Emmett. It may be her best outfit the entire season, and that’s saying something.

Attempted seductions aside, she takes what information she gets about Emmett’s possible contacts to Nate, who uses some of the letters he got from Ophelia to (possibly) corroborate the story. He goes investigating, and needs more bribe money. The evidence Nate digs up isn’t convincing, though.

Emmett’s circling around other things, too, including burying Tegan’s “Jane Doe” email, taking a new job (running for DA), and more. “This whole situation is insane,” Tegan says, and frankly, it hangs a bigger lampshade on the entire season than any attempts at being knowing that the show actually tries in this episode.

More accurately, Annalise has Michaela on the case with Gabriel, essentially doing what she just did with Emmett, only with studying for midterms instead. The show tries to be wry in finally pointing out that the students are still students, but even studying is just a ploy at this point.

The show draws additional parallels between Michaela and Annalise, with both of them having a dinner that’s revealing. Gabriel makes Michaela a killer grilled cheese; Annalise orders Emmett double scotches. Both are meant to draw information from one party, but no one gets exactly what they want.

On one end, Michaela talks about her ethos based on what’s happened with her parents: “I am responsible for me.” However, Gabriel thinks she’s lying, and she heads out, only for Asher to walk in. Their relationship could be back on.

On the other, Annalise can’t get Emmett to open up on anything aside from some motivations he may or may not have for running for DA, but he pushes back on how he reads on her; she walks away without getting what she wants.

However, Emmett actually has some good insights on Annalise, even as he says that she’s hard to understand. (Try and make sense of that, because when you think about it without Timothy Hutton’s delivery, it doesn’t make sense.) As much as she projects a strength, that strength is ultimately quite brittle, and not always open to challenges.

Bonnie, meanwhile, visits the students’ house in order to start working on getting Oliver’s laptop from the feds, with Connor signing onto the case as Oliver’s husband. There’s one exception: Laurel, who goes to the FBI and learns about Annalise’s attempted deal-cutting. That bloodied blanket finally seems like it’s going to pay off after being looked at in lingering shots all season, but Bonnie stops this cold by apologizing for everything that’s happened to Christopher.

On one hand, it makes sense for Bonnie’s character, as she points out in the dialogue. However, the blanket failing to actually mean something to the plot once again is no less than frustrating. It’s fine to have red herrings, but this one has been so constantly dangled that it’s moved past a red herring and just into annoyance territory. The show expects viewers to keep so many things straight that replaying this sticks out sorely.

The final scene, though, brings everything to a head. Emmett bursts into Annalise’s apartment. If you thought that Hutton could act before, his command of the material here is good, even if it’s just two people yelling at each other.

Ultimately, “Make Me the Enemy” feels rushed, if only because this Emmett story about his possible involvement in Nate Sr.’s death popped up too late in the season, especially when it turns out to probably be false. The man they thought was Emmett visiting Nate Sr.? Yeah, it isn’t him (which seemed pretty obvious to this viewer from the jump, making Bonnie risking her job really unnecessary); it’s Laurel’s brother.

Speaking of Laurel’s family? What appears to be her mother’s scalp gets sent to her. Did you really think the Castillos and their particular brand of crime were gone from this show for good?

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More thoughts:

  • The scene where Oliver hacks the judge’s computer even as he and Connor do extremely married things like hand each other pills and fuss about passwords is well-done; he may not be a lawyer, but he actually gets the computer back.
  • Annalise’s coat game is also extremely on point this episode.
  • Asher’s imitation of Pam Walsh shouldn’t be as funny as it is, since it’s only four words long.