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How To Get Away With Murder - Make Me the Enemy - Review: "A Backward Step?

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How To Get Away With Murder has had a very solid run in 2019, but last night's episode was vital in determining whether its fifth season would end on a high, or whether it would end in a similar fashion to the way the first half of the season went, which was rather poor. I'm cautiously optimistic, though there's one aspect I'm not all that thrilled about. "Make Me the Enemy" was written by Erika Harrison and Matthew Cruz, and directed by Mike Smith.

This episode contained a noteworthy increase in intensity throughout the entire hour, and I was happy with this aspect because it wasn't overdone, and it used the storytelling to do it as opposed to character emotion and dialog. The key question to answer following last week's episode, which had the biggest twist the season has seen, was whether Emmett Crawford was to blame for the death of Nate Lahey Sr as alleged by Governor Birkhead, who, rather surprisingly, was absent this week despite dropping that bombshell.

We've seen Tegan and Annalise become a lot closer in the last couple of weeks, so it was Tegan Annalise turned to for advice on how to deal with the allegation against Emmett. When Annalise told Tegan they nearly kissed, Tegan immediately suggested she play the whore, and that's what Annalise did. There was friction at first, however eventually the pair went on a date. That date thankfully contained no chemistry whatsoever, but what happened later was more important because Emmett figured out that Annalise was playing him, and he vehemently denied any allegations or motives he had with regard to his involvement in Lahey Sr's murder.

In a conversation with Tegan earlier, Emmett revealed that he was planning to run for the currently vacant District Attorney's position. This was a surprising development, and it's what gave the women the ammunition to believe Emmett was involved in Lahey Sr's death. Whether he gets that role remains to be seen, however if the character is to remain a part of the series, the roadmap looks promising, and it would also have the flow-on effect of allowing Tegan to progress as well. This is likely a season six storyline, provided everyone stays out of jail.

I didn’t kill that man, Annalise.
For the first time in a while, all the students had some decent storyline material. For starters, Connor and Oliver tag teamed in court to get Oliver's laptop back from the custody of the FBI. It took two attempts, but they succeeded, with Oliver using his hacking skills to determine that the judge who signed the warrant may have been under the influence of alcohol at the time she signed it. This was enough for the judge to overturn her decision, and the laptop was back in safe hands.

Asher was involved here as well, and he was also briefly involved with what happened with Michaela, and her discussions with Gabriel. I rated this as the most fascinating and entertaining part of the hour for me. Early on, Gabriel came to Annalise asking for guidance on what he should do about the lies he's been telling his mother about where he is studying, and Annalise rightfully gave him nothing. She instead got Michaela to play a toned down version of a whore and study with Gabriel.

Things were going well, including Gabriel cooking tea for her, but he is smart, and openly admitted he doesn't believe Wes killed his father, Sam. Gabriel's reception to Michaela's recount of her own mother's death was very poor, and she ended up leaving then and there. Asher witnessed the very brief aftermath of this, but it will be interesting to see whether Gabriel drops Michaela as a romantic option, or whether he tries to make amends with the understanding that he forget about getting information on Sam from her. In any case, the brief moment Michaela and Asher shared toward the end of the episode where they both agreed they miss each other will no doubt add complexity.
I’m telling you to use the gift your mama gave you.
That leaves Laurel to cap off the students, and in my opinion her storyline dragged down this episode, and it will also very likely drag down next week's season finale.

Firstly, we know she's been receiving hang-up phone calls in the last few episodes. This week she finally took her concerns to Agent Telesco, who wasted no time offering immunity if she told her more about the unsolved crimes her and her fellow students and professor were suspected to have been involved in. Laurel was seriously contemplating this offer, perhaps spurred on by the need to protect her baby. However, the end of the episode reveals to us that it was Laurel's brother who was seen visiting Lahey Sr in prison, not Emmett, and further to that, a courier arrived with a parcel containing the hair and scalp presumably belonging to Laurel's mother, Sandrine.

The Castillo arc was the centerpiece of season 4, and I'm really not that keen on the return of Jorje and the other hangers-on that brings. Frank had a very quiet episode this week, with his only contribution besides playing with baby Christopher being his identification of Laurel's brother. This series has enough present-day storylines, and Laurel arguably has more character and family development than Wes did. The creative team need to wrap the Castillo family arc up permanently, not allow it to rule another season. With the Governor and the FBI deeply involved in this season, there's very little overhead for another bunch of antagonists.

Bonnie had a quiet episode as well, but her apology to Laurel for what happened to Christopher was genuine and sincere, and I think that will be critical to the relationship she has with Laurel going into next week. Bonnie also did some digging for Nate, and went to interview the warden of the prison his father was in. Playing him the recording of Warden Sykes and Miller talking about the Lahey Sr prison transfer was enough to convince him to hand over the security footage which enabled her, Nate and Frank to rule out Emmett, and confirm the presence of Laurel's brother. It's looking likely that the Castillo clan were involved in Lahey Sr's death, but their motive remains unknown. I'm ranting again here, but why bring the Castillos into something in which there's never been the slightest indication they might be involved? It's a big backward step.

The final point I'll touch on before closing is that everyone now knows the FBI are very very close to taking everyone down. Oliver had software on his laptop which took photos of anyone who attempted to use it. It caught Agent Telesco taking a look, but it's what was in the background that was more important: the murderboard she had put together, with a concerning number of puzzle pieces in the correct place. Next week's finale will hopefully confirm whether all her investigative work has been worth it.

So, a quick recap of the state of play heading into next week's season finale:

- Laurel's family are back in the picture. Her brother is back, her mother is likely dead, and she still has the evidence placing her baby at the scene of Miller's murder. Has met with Agent Telesco.
- Gabriel is still information on Sam's death, and he knows the students know more. Has met with Agent Telesco.
- Connor and Oliver have kept Oliver's laptop out of the hands of the FBI, but Connor's mother could still have implicated Nate in Miller's death by posting a photo of her and Asher at the wedding online.
- Emmett is looking to move into the DA's role, with Tegan a possibility for managing partner. Tegan got Telesco suspended. Emmett was suspected of killing Lahey Sr, but this was proven false.
- Nate is investigating his father's death and not letting anything get in his way. He still isn't a strong suspect in Miller's disappearance, but is implicated in the photo posted by Connor's mom.
- Bonnie and Frank are mostly under the radar, though Bonnie murdered Miller and Frank will be more closely involved with Laurel's brother than anyone else.
- Annalise remains at the center of Telesco's murderboard because she's the common denominator and legal mastermind behind many of the group's escapades and evasions from the law.

There's plenty of material for next week's finale to leverage to finish off the season in strong fashion. It's difficult to predict what will happen, but given the work the FBI have done I am cautiously optimistic there may be an arrest. Given Annalise has already spent time in prison I don't think it will be her, but the arrest of Bonnie could throw a spanner in the works given she's actually guilty of murder.

I'll bring to a stop my theory spinning because I want to hear from you! Head down to the comments below and tell me and your fellow readers your thoughts and theories as to what you think will happen and would like to see in next week's season finale. I'll hang round in the comments for some discussion too. Thanks for reading, and I'll see you all right back here next week for the season finale.

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