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Revenge recap: 'Madness'

Malcolm Black, this season’s Big Bad, makes his presence known in the Hamptons, and Emily helps Nolan with a takedown.

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Danny Feld/ABC


TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
run date:
Emily VanCamp, Madeleine Stowe

From Louise’s crazy family drama to Margaux’s health scare, tonight’s Revenge was all about the craziness that comes with families. Tonight, the Revenge crew found out the hard way that Malcolm Black’s in town, while Emily goes on what she thinks is her last takedown. Let’s take a look, shall we?

David Clarke vs. Malcolm Black:

Tonight’s hour opens up with a flashback to 2003 that shows the events of David’s “death.” Quick recap for those who forgot: During a prison riot, former CTU Director Bill Buchanan, on Conrad Grayson’s orders, stabbed David Clarke. However, unbeknownst to everyone, Malcolm Black, who somehow knew of Conrad’s plan to assassinate David, had his men whisk the prisoner away in an ambulance and save his life.

Back in the present, David has recommitted himself to killing Victoria. Under the pretense of discussing their relationship in light of her confession, David invites her to join him at a lighthouse—their old rendezvous spot from back in the day—where he plans on making her death look like a suicide. However, Victoria should thank her stars, because Emily is able to talk her dad out of this plan. From Emily’s point of view, death would be too merciful. The ultimate punishment, Emily says, would be to make Victoria live with the pain of having lost everything. (But, what about Charlotte?! She’s just chilling in rehab waiting for the writers to need her again.) Furthermore, Emily convinces her dad that maybe it’s time to get out of the Hamptons.

Unfortunately for the Clarkes, their exodus is slightly delayed when Malcolm makes his presence known. Early in the episode, Malcolm pays Jack a visit to question him about his daughter’s whereabouts. Jack, being a terrible liar, is unable to persuade Malcolm that he knows nothing about Kate’s disappearance, which leads to Malcolm making a thinly veiled threat to Jack’s family. Obviously, Jack’s first call is to David, who springs into action.

After instructing Jack to act normal and to stay away from Emily for fear of Malcolm finding out Amanda is alive, David begins to set a trap for Malcolm. He tells Malcolm that his daughter is alive and the only way to see her again will be to come to a location of David’s choosing. Except, when Malcolm shows up, he won’t find his daughter (she’s dead) but instead will find David waiting to kill him.

After four seasons, Jack still has faith in the criminal justice system. After hearing of David’s plan, Jack tries to talk him out of it and says that they should turn the evidence David has on Malcolm over to the police. But, David cannot be swayed from the path because, as he tells Jack: “Conrad ruined my life, but Malcolm, he damned my soul to hell.” In another flashback we find out just what David means by this: Early on in his time as Malcolm’s captive, David asked one of Malcolm’s nicer security guards to deliver a letter to Amanda. Unfortunately, Malcolm found out and gave David a choice: either kill the security guard or Malcolm would kill Amanda. Naturally, David chose the former—a decision that has haunted him ever since.

Taking matters into his own hands, Jack steals the evidence and hands it over to the police, and thus foils David’s plan. The police arrest Malcolm and his crew before they make it to David. Because this is Revenge, where everything is awful, so we quickly find out that Jack chose poorly. After being arrested, Hampton PD turned Malcolm over to the Feds, who claim insufficient evidence and let him go.

NEXT: Secrets are revealed!