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How To Get Away With Murder - It’s Her Kid - Review: "Jittery"

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Last night's episode of How To Get Away With Murder was an intriguing one to say the least. With no weekly case, everyone's energies were devoted to the ongoing class action case with some good progress made, but it was elsewhere that the more interesting developments came about. "It’s Her Kid" was written by first-timer Maisha Closson and directed by Cherie Nowlan.

This episode really was all over the place at times, which was in stark contrast to last week's hour which was almost perfectly paced and structured. Perhaps this disjointed feel was deliberate because that's certainly how I read the characters. There was friction everywhere you looked, especially between the students both at home and at Caplan & Gold.

Everyone was jittery about something. In Oliver's case, Frank had a few stern words to him about why he felt he was entitled to look into the backgrounds of Annalise's students not once but twice. The findings Oliver came across put Connor on edge because he didn't know why he was in Annalise's class if he was vetted. A loud exchange between him and Annalise on this issue blew his chances to second chair the Lahey trial. Michaela was still trying to salvage her reputation in the eyes of Tegan while also battling internally about Asher. Asher confessed to Bonnie he felt lonely and missed their relationship, and lastly, Laurel, for the second week running, had to deal with Gabriel's courting.

At least the baby essentially an afterthought for a change.

Returning for the first time this season was Nate Lahey Sr, Nate's father, and the first of the class action prisoners to be retried. Nate and Annalise worked to prepare him for his psychological evaluation which unveiled more about the circumstances of the murder he allegedly committed. Long story short, Nate Sr provided enough evidence to suggest he didn't know what he was doing was wrong at the time of the murder so his trial could proceed.

The only right answer is to say you didn't.
This is one of Nate's more important storylines over the course of the series, but his investigations into what became of Bonnie's child picked up more steam than I imagined they would in this hour. After Annalise told him that the woman in the surveillance imagery was Bonnie's sister, Nate successfully tracked down Julie Winterbottom, a drug user who was living rough. The whereabouts of the baby still isn't known despite Nate uplifting a syringe used by a man Julie was seen with for a DNA test. Unfortunately for Nate, his under the table lab tests might no longer be possible as his obliging girlfriend broke up with him over this latest one.
Its a chance for Bonnie to get back what she lost.
Bonnie was in tears when Annalise broke the news on Nate's detective work into her baby. It wasn't the news she wanted or expected, especially when she thought Nate had destroyed the file Denver had on her. While the storyline is progressing well, I find it very difficult to invest in Bonnie's character on an emotional level despite all the bad things that have happened to her. I don't think anything will convince me to back Bonnie at any time, so hopefully the resolution to this storyline isn't too large or important because it may become a drag.

One area that is in more pressing need of development is why Frank is looking so deeply into Gabriel, and who may be pulling his strings. Again last night we saw another phone call between Frank and his mystery man. His progress wasn't revealed because that was overshadowed by Oliver's antics. Hopefully this gains some more traction next week,

As I expected, following Miller's big win over Annalise and Caplan & Gold last week, the man is now the permanent interim DA. He's not the DA just yet, but that's edging closer and could likely be a midseason or season ending moment. I'm beginning to think he may be around for the long term because a third DA in five or six seasons would be a bit weird from a creative standpoint. Think of that what you may, but in the meantime Miller is keen to go public with his relationship with Bonnie, and literally proposed she sign a HR form. Bonnie had in fact signed it but got the news from Annalise about her lost child so that may have to wait a little bit.

The hour's most bizarre moment was its beginning. Instead of a flash forward, we had Annalise entering a night club and meeting Tegan there. Fortunately the remainder of the Caplan & Gold related stuff was fairly decent. C&G needed a new client and source of funding for the class action case, and a fast food baroness was the perfect answer. Michaela had even worked for one of the franchises. Their ethics were questionable, which led Michaela to look for blackmail options and Gabriel to test Annalise on her reasoning for representing a company with exploitation at its core. Perhaps more importantly, Annalise pieced together the cloud of suspicion surrounding Emmett, putting it to him that he couldn't be alone with a client stemming from misconduct issues. He's going to return to London so things may be in for a bumpy ride in his absence. Fortunately, money won't be an issue as the fast food company CEO agreed to sign with C&G while also resigning and putting Tegan as its new legal face as the company turns its fortunes around.

As mentioned before, this episode didn't open with a flash forward, but it did end with one. It continued the trend of being sequential, picking up where last week's ones left off. This week, after Oliver didn't come to the stage when asked, Michaela, Connor and Laurel met and decided to call Oliver. Michaela called Nate instead, and her call went to voicemail. Across the room Bonnie reached into her purse and pulled out a phone that was ringing. The call was coming from Michaela, meaning Bonnie, for some reason, has Nate's phone.

But that's not all. For the first time this season, a second segment of the flash forward takes place in a second location - most likely Annalise's home. She comes through the door and breaks down in tears on the floor. Surely she could only be grieving in that way for Nate? It's not at all like the How To Get Away With Murder showrunners to give away the next victim so early on so I guess we will have to wait and see whether this is a giant red herring, or whether the showrunners have found another way to change things up a gear in this fifth season.

There's not really anything else left to say about this episode. It was OK for the most part, and served its function without too much of a fuss. The writing and directing weren't spectacular, and none of the cast showed what they could really do if given the right material. Things are building reasonably well. Something tells me next week's episode might be a better spectacle so I'm looking forward to that. Its title is certainly ominous.

Until then, thanks as always for reading. Make sure you share your own thoughts and theories on this episode in the comments below and I'll see you right back here next week.

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