Midseason review: The debate over ‘Revenge’ season 2

RevengeFor the second edition of our Midseason Review series (take a look at “Once Upon a Time” here), we are putting the focus on a show that was really at one point known for being completely scandalous. What happened since that point? The only real answer that we can think of is that “Revenge” is not always as weet the second time around.

In between the new characters (in particular Barry Sloane’s Aiden) and the prospect of seeing whether or not Victoria Grayson would survive the plane crash, the second season of the ABC drama series had quite a bit of hype behind it. We also knew that Emily Thorne was going to be meeting her mother, and this had potential to be epic. So why are we feeling right now as though someone let the air out of the show’s tires? The answer seems relatively simple: for all of the movement, the various arrests, and the arrival and departures of Kara, it really did not feel like the show went anywhere surprising, and felt like more of the same except on a smaller scale.

While the Grayson family had many of the best moments of the show’s first season, the second go-around has struggled for the family almost in the same way as “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” (a far inferior show, mind you) has: there is so much constant fighting that after a while, it just seems normal. There needs to be some sort of calm in order for the storm to seem even remotely significant. The story with Jack and Amanda, while it has been slow-moving, has at least been great to watch from an emotional level in that it is a new reminder to Emily of the life that she could have, and the life that someone bearing her name is having. Amanda was not even around during all of season 1, but her presence has been huge for season 2 thus far.

The MVP of the show at the moment is clearly Gabriel Mann, whose Nolan is the most complex individual in this Hamptons universe. From one perspective, he is a fairly kind and generous man. At the same time, he is also as devious and power-hungry as anyone who is not afriad to make big moves in secret. The more Nolan we have, the better … and there were times when we wish that we had more of them.

The declining ratings for “Revenge” thus far should be no coincidence, as viewers are obviously looking for something more, that spark to get people talking again. The great news for the show is that Mike Kelley entered the season obviously looking to give people who liked the first 22 episodes more of the same; unfortunately, in doing this, though, the bad news is that the same is not nearly as buzzworthy as it once was.

Do you think “Revenge” season 2 has been great, or a great disappointment thus far? We want to hear from you, and you can also check out what Mann had to say about some dream casting for the show over at the link here.

Photo: ABC

Love TV? Be sure to like Matt & Jess on Facebook for more updates!