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'How to Get Away With Murder' recap: 'It's About Frank'

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ABC/Richard Cartwright

How to Get Away With Murder

type:
TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
tvpgr:
TV-14
seasons:
2
run date:
09/25/14
performer:
Viola Davis, Alfred Enoch
broadcaster:
ABC
genre:
Crime, Drama, Mystery

Betrayal, a surprise (and steamy!) hookup, and lots of Annalise drunk dancing: Tonight’s episode of HTGAWM had everything a fan could want and more. Plus, we learned how Frank first came into the Keating’s lives and that Michaela (and maybe Connor?) are not under the sheet. Let’s dive in to the aptly titled “It’s About Frank.”

We pick up where we left off last week, in the hospital with Meggie, Bonnie, Oliver, and a pregnant and seriously injured Laurel on the operating table. Meggie is sharing what information she has about the situation, but it’s not much.

Totally Shipping Brank (Fronnie?)

Three weeks earlier, Bonnie traveled to Coalport to take care of her father’s funeral arrangements. This turns out to be a one-and-done thing when she tells the funeral home to cremate him before walking out. The even bigger reason she’s in Coalport, though, is to meet with Frank. Bonnie has shared this plan with Laurel, but definitely not Annalise. Bonnie sees Frank outside the funeral home and immediately hugs him with her thanks.

Frank looks like a tired (but clean-shaven) mess as he and Bonnie spend time together in his motel room. They review the last few months and discuss why he killed Mahoney. Bonnie tries to convince Frank he should come back to Philadelphia, that he and Annalise just need to forgive each other for everything. She insists Annalise doesn’t really want him dead, but ultimately he doesn’t believe her.

Later, Bonnie sleeps in the room’s bed while Frank sleeps on the floor. From where he lies, he tells Bonnie he simply can’t go back, even if Annalise would forgive him. He instead suggests he and Bonnie run away together, to a small town somewhere where they can live normal lives and have a family. “We’d have cute babies, no?” he says, but quickly adds that he’s only teasing.

Bonnie and Frank are especially comfortable in each other’s company up until this point, perhaps a symptom of them both craving some type of human intimacy. However, things reach a new level when Bonnie heads down to sleep with Frank on the floor. He’s having a bad dream and she tries to relax him…which leads to them kissing and having sex(!). (Was this the first time? Has there actually been something between them all along?)

The next morning, Bonnie goes out to bring back a delicious Coalport breakfast. When she returns, Frank is gone again.

Annalise Goes to AA

Annalise is suspended from her job at the university and her license remains under review. She takes this time off to get her hair done, catch up with friends like Mary J. Blige (not literally, unfortunately), and have some fun in the dancery some call a beauty parlor.

Bonnie left Annalise a list of AA meetings she could attend, and she actually goes to one. While introducing herself, she notices President Hargrove is also in attendance. While Hargrove tries to calmly talk to Annalise after the meeting and congratulate her for taking this positive step, Annalise comes at her full-throttle and tries to start an argument about her suspension.

Later that evening, Annalise boxes up all of her alcohol and throws it out. She can’t sleep, though, tossing and turning as memories of Sam and their issues trying to conceive swirl in her head. Eventually she gives in, grabs a bottle from the trash, and takes a big swig.

We spend much of the episode’s watching Viola Davis gun for her next Emmy as she delivers a perfect rendition of Annalise drunk dancing, singing, and dialing Nate. At some point, Wes shows up and insists on taking care of her.

The following day, Annalise visits President Hargrove at her office to show her the $50 million lawsuit she planned to file against the school in light of her suspension and the administration’s recent actions. Hargrove gives in and lifts the suspension, but tells Annalise “You can’t get better alone… Believe me, I’ve tried and failed enough times to know.” Annalise pretends to ignore her.

It Really Is All About Frank

All of the story lines mentioned so far are related to this week’s biggest takeaway: Frank’s backstory. We learn Frank came into Annalise’s life when Sam visited him in prison 11 years earlier. He was sentenced for injuring his father when he was 13, but he was up for parole and Sam wanted Annalise to represent him. It seemed Frank hadn’t quite yet learned his lesson, though, as he had exhibited many violent and stupid tendencies while in prison — and seemingly borrowed a page from the Annalise Keating Book of Stubbornness.

Annalise is furious Sam wants her to take this pro bono case with a difficult (and self-proclaimed sociopathic) young man, but ultimately she agrees.

NEXT: “Is it like a hillbilly or Deliverance-type accent?”

[pagebreak]

Other Big Takeaways

  • Drake made those “Killer” signs: Michaela and Oliver conspired to steal Drake’s laptop. Inexplicably, Drake had left open his Photoshop file of Annalise with “Killer” scrawled in red under her face — the one seen all over campus — for anyone to see. They show this to Annalise, who’s less mad and more relieved. She’s happy the culprit was a whiney student and not someone who actually knew anything. Later, Annalise barges into Drake’s apartment and throws around words like “slander” and “defamation” to terrify him.
  • Michaela has a Southern accent: While yelling at Drake to back off about who stole his laptop, Michaela slipped into a bit of a Southern twang the rest of the Keating Five hadn’t noticed before. This leads to lots of jokes at her expense.
  • Wes confesses to Laurel: That he might love her. (Or am I the only one inferring that?) Wes tells Laurel he thinks he needs to break up with Meggie because he feels like he’s lying to her — presumably about his feelings for Laurel, though this goes mostly unsaid. (Why did he jump into a relationship with Meggie in the first place, then?) Wes mentions that Frank is gone now, but Laurel knows this isn’t true.
  • Laurel makes her own confession: She tells Wes that Frank isn’t gone. Rather, he’s currently in Coalport with Bonnie. Wes, especially loyal to Annalise nowadays, insists they go over and tell her. Laurel doesn’t want to say what she knows — she swore to Bonnie she wouldn’t — but as she shares info on Frank’s real whereabouts, Bonnie walks in to Annalise’s house behind them.

#NOTunderthesheet

In the last scene of the episode, we’re once again back in present day and at the hospital post-fire. Bonnie’s on the phone, explaining to someone that Laurel was pregnant. Oliver is trying desperately to reach Connor when a woman answers his phone with a Southern accent. It’s Trishelle Pratt, Michaela’s adoptive mother, and Connor has apparently left his phone in the cushions of her daughter’s couch. Just then, Michaela walks in to answer Oliver’s call.

Does this mean Michaela and Connor might be safe? Where did Frank go now? And will Mary J. Blige return? Tune in next week, and let us know in the comments what you thought of tonight’s outing!

Honorable Mentions

  • “Your husband’s kind of vanilla. You’re the opposite.” —A younger Frank upon meeting Annalise for the first time
  • “I’ve always been kind of a moron.” —Younger Frank (again)
  • “That’s not true. You protected me. I want to do the same for you.” —Wes as Annalise pukes her guts out
  • “My husband likes you for some reason, and I tend to think he has good taste… He picked me, after all.” —Annalise to Younger Frank when he’s still in jail

Episode grade: B+

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