Entering Absentia episode 8, it was not altogether tough to call it a dramatic episode of television. After all, Alice Durand and Flynn were seemingly kidnapped, Emily was awakened to the dark history of the orphanage, and Jack found himself arrested for his role in the bad attempt to save Emily Byrne.
Not too long after the fact, we learned that Emily (seemingly) was not the kidnapper. She was alone on the street and it was through the media that she actually learned for the first time that Alice and Flynn were gone. Ironically, it was also through the media that Jack found himself out on bail. A reporter wanted to use him to tell Emily’s story and was hoping that this gesture was enough to push things in her desired direction. That didn’t happen, at least for now, since Jack had other things to do. Take, for example, trying to find a way to track down the person who was really responsible for Flynn and Alice’s kidnapping.
Eventually, we do need to get to Charles Avallone. He is a man who grew up at the orphanage alongside Emily, and he seemed to be one of the other young people who was tortured by its maniacal Dr. Lu-Fang Shen. Emily had found her way into an insane asylum in hopes of trying to track him down, knowing that he was essential to locating her son and his stepmother. Meanwhile, Nick and the FBI started to move forward in that direction, as well. While it may have taken a lot of disbelief, a public press conference, and an angry confrontation with Jack, we hoped that at around the midway point of this episode Nick started to have some tangible doubt surrounding Emily’s guilt. (Well, those hopes weren’t exactly proven true at the end of the episode.) We should also point out that scene with Nick and Emily’s father, who (as we’ve said many times over) is probably our favorite person on the show.
Emily’s dad told Nick that she was always going to be a step ahead, and it just so turns out that he was right. Right when Nick was getting permission to enter the asylum, Emily found herself finding herself into what was effectively Charles’ domain. Effectively, he blamed her in part for some of Lu-Fang Shen’s treatment — or at least he seemed to. He wasn’t all there, but this confrontation for Emily to start moving towards a showdown with Subject B. This could be the person holding Flynn and Alice; unfortunately, Nick got in the way.
Out of everything that we anticipated seeing on Absentia, we cannot say that Nick getting shot by Emily was high on the list. She didn’t want to do it. Yet, Emily felt like she didn’t have much of a choice. Nick was keeping her from being able to finish some of her work, since (contrary to our hope) he didn’t believe her anymore.
Note that we don’t think Emily killed Nick; yet, she did still use his own unwillingness to shoot her against him. She shot him in the shoulder and made her escape. Time is ticking, and with Nick shot it’s now that much harder for her to prove her innocence unless she finds the subject, Flynn, and Alice in time.
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It’s fair to say, once again, that Absentia delivered a super-intense episode here that sets the stage for one of the biggest, craziest final stretches that we’ve seen in some time. We’re hoping for a big conclusion; more than that, we’re hoping that there could be some sort of path forward for Emily Byrne. It’s just hard to see now that she’s shot Nick and that gunfire is as clear as day.
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