How To Get Away With Murder: “We’re Not Friends” Review

Spoilers Ahead!!

Hate to break it to you guys, but How To Get Away With Murder was not on point this week. Honestly, the show is getting too predictable. Not in terms of plot or anything, but in stylistic form. Think about it. Open scene, back at the bonfire – present day (obviously). We still really have no clue what is going on, and each episode provides little information about that night. As a viewer, it’s getting frustrating.

“Let’s just get the hell out of here now,” whispers an emotionally distraught Connor, having just assisted in the murder of Samuel Keating. Flash back to six weeks prior. Annalise Keating confronts Sam about his affair with Lila Stanguard. Viola Davis killed this scene… duh. The passion in her voice made the scene interesting; the substance certainly wouldn’t have done so alone. In last week’s episode, Wes discovered a picture of a naked man on Lila’s phone (that he found in his apartment). Annalise immediately recognized it to be that of her husband’s, but did not tell Wes. And now, Sam admits to having an affair with his student – throughout the summer – and increases Annalise’s suspicion of his involvement in her murder.

Now I know what you’re wondering… what’s this week’s case? As usual, Annalise and her team work on a case. Basically every case so far is pretty high profile, and it’s getting a little too cliché. And yes in the beginning, oscillating between the real cases and the legal class was a very interesting cinematic technique. But now it’s lost my interest. Each week also puts one of the characters in the spotlight. Last week was Connor, the week before that was Michaela. So who is the lucky one this week? The seductively mysterious Laurel.

Case of the Week: Ryan, a boy who shot his police officer father. His father abused his mother and Ryan could not stand it anymore. He tells Annalise and her team that he is glad his father is dead. The media are painting Ryan as a sociopath, a boy who brutally killed an innocent man that devoted his life to protecting others. This week’s case is also slightly different than most. While most cases are won on evidence, this one has to tailor to the jury’s emotions. We learn about the process of selecting the right kind of jurors – ones that have problems with authority or are more emotional. 

Photo courtesy of ABC.

Photo courtesy of ABC.

And here is where Laurel shines. We all know that she is sneaky and incredibly intelligent. So, what does she do? She slips a juror some information on jury nullification, a process by which the jury can declare a defendant innocent even though the evidence proves him/her to be guilty. Of course, providing the jury with this information is illegal. Frank catches Laurel in the act. I love when Frank and Laurel interact. So much sexual tension – something this show uses maybe too often. Anyways, Frank informs Annalise that “someone” tampered with the jury, but does not pin it on Laurel (how romantic). 

Because of Laurel’s outstanding smarts, she knows that tampering with the jury will result in a mistrial and Ryan’s case will go to juvenile court. The worst punishment there is community service, counseling, etc. You go Laurel. So that’s the end of Ryan’s story.

Most exciting moment of the episode: Laurel and Frank hook up. She asks him why he did not turn her in. From there it’s about 30 seconds of make out, until Laurel storms out saying, “I have a boyfriend.”

Now, back to Lila Stanguard and Sam Keating. Annalise calls Rebecca in to talk with Sam, to see if Lila told Rebecca who her affair was with. All Rebecca knows is that Lila referred to her partner as “Mr. Darcy” because he was married. Rebecca thought it made her sound smart. However, Rebecca does not seem to recognize Sam. That is, until she sees the wallpaper in his office. It matches the one on the phone. Rebecca calls Wes in a panic upon her realization. Wes then immediately storms over to the Keating residence. Annalise is stunned by Wes’s demands. You lied to me. The wallpaper. The picture on Lila’s phone. It was taken here. Your husband is Mr. Darcy.

End scene.

Stray Observations:

– Shadows are used to symbolize mistrust and secrets. Nearly every scene with Annalise and Sam is dark and filled with shadows hiding their faces. This is because Annalise is slowly losing faith in her husband. 

– With few exceptions, none of the music has vocal tracks. They are all digital tracks. This is an interesting technique occasionally used in television to imply intensity, rigor, and excitement. It also highlights the events within the scene. When music has vocals, it distracts from it and normally makes it more of a sappy dramatic scene. 

Leave a Reply