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The Returned - Tony and Adam - Review

The Returned, “Tony and Adam,” was directed by Jennifer Getzinger with the teleplay by Graham Roland. Gertzinger’s credits include Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Mad Men, and Masters of Sex. Roland’s name should be familiar from Almost Human, Fringe, and Lost. It’s another tightly written episode that is brilliantly shot and well-acted. There is one particularly gorgeous shot just at the end of the opening scene. Once again, we start in the past with the death of the title character, but the focus of the episode encompasses all of the returned.

We begin seven years in the past. Ma Darrow (Nicola Cavendish) comes across as a brow-beating shrew as she blames Tony (Aaron Douglas) for letting Adam (Rhys Ward) get out. Tony hedges that Adam is just hunting, but Ma says, “Hunting what?” We quickly realize that she actually does love both her boys, but they are keeping Adam locked up because he’s “sick.” They’ve come to the point where they can’t fool themselves anymore, so she tells Tony to take care of his brother – there’s nothing they can do to make him better. We quickly find out that Adam is the one behind the murders – his “sickness.” Suddenly, things start to fall into place. Tony coming after Adam is the only reason that Julie (Sandrine Holt) is alive, and Adam returning explains the attack on Lucy (Leah Gibson).

Tony killing his brother is very Cain/Abel but is made even more horrific because he’s actually burying Adam alive. Adam wakes up and pleads for mercy before Tony has to hit him with the shovel again. Let’s hope this time he was actually dead. The final shot in the past is of Tony silhouetted against a tree, clearly already consumed with guilt. In the present, Tony seems determined to simply keep Adam hidden at home. Adam doesn’t seem to remember his death until Tony comes home to find Adam covered in blood. We’ve seen him really enjoying having his hands shoved inside a deer gutting it. Adam tells Tony it’s just a deer he’s killed. Adam remembers Tony killing him, and Tony is still consumed with guilt over it – to the point that he clearly wants Adam to kill him. Adam, of course, doesn’t.

Rowan (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and Tommy (Kevin Alejandro) try to work through the fallout from the last episode. Once again, I was really impressed with Alejandro’s performance. Tommy is so in love with Rowan that he’s willing to overlook what happened with Simon (Mat Vairo) and just move past it. Rowan can’t move past Tommy’s betrayal quite so easily, even if he was spying on her to protect her. He continues to try to protect her, pointing out that Simon’s return isn’t natural and that “whatever he is now is dangerous.” Finally, someone starting to see that there’s a problem here – beyond simply tearing his world apart.

Simon has gone back to Caldwell Community Center, but after Victor (Dylan Kingwell) confronts Peter (Jeremy Sisto) about killing him and runs away, Peter tells Simon it’s not safe for him to stay there as the police will be coming out. Peter takes Simon to Claire’s (Tandi Wright), which makes sense in light of Camille (India Ennenga). I’m really enjoying the spin all of the returned actors are putting on their characters. Simon seems harmless, but Victor seems quite threatening. Camille is hard to get a read on – is she slightly threatening or is it just the usual teenage angst?

Camille asks Simon if his parents know, and we learn that he never knew them. Simon doesn’t remember getting hit, but he does remember feeling happy and afraid that he was both getting marrieds and having a baby. He remembers thinking that maybe he didn’t deserve it, but none of that feels like he committed suicide. Remember, however, that we did see Victor play a huge part in Camille’s death – was he present at Simon’s as well?

Camille’s takeaway is that love is stronger than death and that’s what’s brought Simon back. Camille like many teenage girls before her seems obsessed with love. Later in the episode as “Alice” she lies to her new friends about being in a relationship with Simon – who is in a band. She also seems determined to pick up where she left off with Ben (Keenan Tracey) – or at least have what Lena (Sophie Lowe) had with him. In the furtherance of love, Camille delivers a message to Rowan to meet Simon at the train station with Chloe (Dakota Guppy) ready to run away.

Rowan goes through her things, finding a CD that Simon had made for her “Forever.” After listening to it, she makes her decision and throws it and all of Simon’s things away. When Tommy comes home, he’s half expecting an empty house, but instead, Rowan is now ready to move forward with their lives together. Alejandro’s reaction in the scene is once again terrific. He doesn’t ask questions, he simply accepts that they are moving forward together toward the wedding.

Helen (Michelle Forbes) continues to be creepy and fairly obviously angry. She’s sitting in the dark after Victor runs away and later tells Peter not to worry, that the boy will find Peter when he’s ready. She doesn’t call him Victor because she knows his real name is Henry. It’s interesting that Victor seems to be the cause of the power fluctuations. He may be the youngest returned, but he’s also the oldest in a way too.

Helen goes for a walk and walks right into the river. As she’s standing there, an entire herd of dead deer float by. The Coronor (Garry Chalk) later says he thinks it looks like they all committed suicide by drowning. Helen looks mildly surprised to see them, so I doubt she had anything to do with it. She continues into town where she encounters the mural erected to commemorate the deaths of the 84 citizens who died on April 3, 1986 when the dam burst. I loved the look on Forbes’ face as she looks at it – too little too late? Bad likeness? Clearly, she’s not impressed.

As she moves away from the mural, she sees Victor and says, “Henry? Do you remember me?” He doesn’t, but she says she knew his mother and that she was a good woman and what happened to them was awful. She takes him to the diner for lunch – both are voraciously hungry again. She tells him she believes everything happens for a reason, but they aren’t the problem, it’s Caldwell. She thing that only in an un-Godly place could they survive and that the dam bursting was like Noah and the flood. She says, “Somebody needs to do something about it.” It’s easy to see that she’s going to decide that that somebody should be her. We learn that she knew Henry’s mother from having protested together before the flood.

Lena is still in the hospital with Jack (Mark Pellegrino) watching over her, but he steps out to have a drink. Meanwhile, Lena is woken up by her connection with Camille kicking in. Just as Camille felt Lena losing her virginity to Ben, Lena feels Camille as she kisses Ben in the bar. Lena knows immediately what’s happening and staggers out of the hospital and to the Dog Star. She finds “Alice” having fun with all of her friends – trying to steal Lena’s life. Lena exposes her as her sister not her cousin. But of course, it’s the most unbelievable story! It seems likely that they will believe “Alice” who is blaming it on Lena’s medication and sickness. Lena then storms back out of the bar only to collapse in the forest. Camille at least has the decency to go after her, but the last shot is of Adam looming over an unconscious Lena.

What did you think of the episode? Are you starting to form an opinion yet about why these people have returned? Do you think they are there for good or evil? Is it a case by case basis? Is Victor/Henry the cause of it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

About the Author - Lisa Macklem
I do interviews and write articles for the site in addition to reviewing a number of shows, including Supernatural, Arrow, Agents of Shield, The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Forever, Defiance, Bitten, Glee, and a few others! Highlights of this past year include covering San Diego Comic Con as press and a set visit to Bitten. When I'm not writing about television shows, I'm often writing about entertainment and media law in my capacity as a legal scholar. I also work in theatre when the opportunity arises. I'm an avid runner and rider, currently training in dressage.