This week’s episode shows us dueling therapy sessions: Annalise with Isaac, and Isaac with his own doctor. Isaac’s therapist wants him to tell Annalise about Bonnie and her shady moves and she also thinks that Isaac should not continue seeing Annalise because of how much she is triggering him. He thinks that the opposite is true—that he’s the right person to help Annalise because of his past trauma. He’s clearly all kinds of worked up over the situation, and in his head he probably knows she’s right, but the heart wants what it wants and he wants to keep seeing Annalise.
And so Isaac ignores his doctor’s very good and medically ethical advice. Isaac seems like a good dude but he’s not a great therapist since the whole ethics and rules thing seems to be optional for him. That said, now I kind of hope that we get a Jimmy Smits/Viola Davis love scene because that would just be some delicious icing on the cake of his consummate unprofessionalism. Also, have I mentioned I love Jimmy Smits? I have? OK, moving on.
It’s obvious that Isaac cares deeply about Annalise—probably because he’s projecting—and feels very strongly that if he stops seeing her, she will start drinking again. In his session with Annalise, Isaac is trying to get her to open up about her grief—not about Wes but about the baby she lost, which he only knows about because of Bonnie. He gives her some “homework”: write a letter to Sam. He’s hoping that in writing out her feelings to/about her dead husband, the baby thing will come up organically and there will be no need to mention the whole Bonnie/Julie situation.
Speaking of Bonnie/Julie, later in the episode we learn that, despite the sketchy way she ended up seeing him, Isaac cares about Bonnie and thinks she made good progress. He shows up at her office and tells her that, while he can’t treat her, he wants to refer her to someone else and continue treatment. I have to say, given his record of literally not caring at all about ethical practices, I kind of thought he was going to suggest she keep seeing him. Regardless, she kicks him out of her office, which is some place that Annalise Keating’s court-ordered therapist should definitely not have been in the first place. In a show where everyone shows poor judgment and makes horrible choices pretty much constantly, Isaac fits right in.
Back at home, Annalise is greeted by Connor—the new Robin to her Batman—telling her that the D.A.’s office has reached a new low in their attempt to derail the class action suit. The D.A.’s office is trying to threaten Claudia—Annalise’s former cellmate/enemy and one of the few not to bail on the class action—by seizing her family’s home. This is, fucked up as it may be, completely legal since Claudia sold pot out of the house, but now it’s just her kids and their elderly grandma living there. It’s not a drug den; it’s a house that’s been in their family for generations and, without it, they will be homeless and the children likely placed in foster care.
Annalise isn’t about to let this happen and takes Connor with her to visit Claudia in prison. Also in attendance is Claudia’s 15-year-old son Tyrone, who has some choice words for Annalise (and I can’t blame him even one little bit for mouthing off, given the situation). Connor has done a total 180 on Annalise (and is good with moody teenagers) and he manages to convince Tyrone to chill and just let Annalise do her thing. He promises that she can and will fix it, and she tries her best to get a judge to file an injunction, but nobody really wants to touch this class action—or more accurately, nobody wants to be on Annalise’s side. The judge isn’t against the idea of the class action but he thinks that she’s the wrong person to spearhead it given her current standing in the legal community.
At the D.A.’s office, Denver has finally decided to stop openly hating Bonnie and, instead, gives her props in front of the entire office for her work (i.e. derailing the class action). She gets a round of applause from everyone, which is a level of recognition for her work that I’m fairly certain she never got with Annalise. If she wasn’t blackmailing Denver for the job and obsessed with fucking Annalise over I would say that A.D.A. Winterbottom is actually a good look for her.
It doesn’t last very long, though, because Annalise busts into the office (with Connor in tow) and gives one of her classic boss-bitch speeches. She lays into everyone and shames them for everything they have done, which amounts to hurting innocent poor people and making children homeless. Connor looks at her like she’s some sort of goddess of justice come down to earth, and even Nate can finally see that Annalise is actually trying to do the right thing.
Nate seems to be back on Team Annalise, at least as far as her social justice work goes. He has even told the police department to move Bonnie’s requests to the bottom of what can only assume is a very large pile of stuff to look into. Bonnie is furious and busts in on Nate in the men’s room to chew him out but he’s not having any of her nonsense and tells her that she needs to chill because she’s not hurting Annalise; she’s hurting innocent people who deserve better than what the justice system has done to them. Nate’s words seem to have made an impression on Bonnie and she goes to Denver and tells him that the polling data in low-income districts is not looking good for him and he should stop the crusade against Annalise. Denver, predictably, doesn’t give a shit and just takes her off the case, citing the fact that she’s too emotional.
Back in the land of the Keating Five (I’m including Oliver now), Oliver and Michaela are totally freaking out about hacking Tegan’s Antares files when Tegan shows up and tells Michaela that the Antares people have showed up for an emergency meeting. The Antares squad includes Laurel’s dad, and Michaela is totally panicked and calls Laurel. Laurel is at the doctor getting an ultrasound and asking about getting a paternity test (and let me just say that I REALLY want it to be Frank’s baby). Just as soon as Michaela tells Laurel her dad is in town, Mr. Castillo calls her and asks her to dinner, which poses a problem since Laurel told him she got an abortion and she is now very visibly pregnant.
Meanwhile, Asher is having his own freak-out about the fact that Michaela has been lying to him. He goes to see Frank to ask for lady advice, which is an interesting choice considering Frank is great at getting laid but not so good at maintaining an actual long-term relationship. Frank tells Asher to just ask Michaela straight up so he decides to show up unannounced at Caplan and Gold to confront her. Not a great choice, and Michaela is embarrassed/pissed, but Asher manages to charm Tegan with his Asher-ness. Once Tegan leaves, Asher tells Michaela he knows she lied to him and Michaela decides to continue lying and say that she was with Laurel because she’s her birthing partner. It’s an odd choice of lie since that’s not something that one would really keep a secret, but it was the best she could come up with on the spot. It’s not like she could reveal their grand plan to take down Antares in the middle of the C&G offices, so I’ll give her a pass even though she’s a much smarter liar than that.
Laurel is Facetiming with Michaela and Oliver, preparing to meet her dad for dinner and going through a million outfits to try and find something that will disguise her baby bump. Oliver is still losing his shit over the security changes at C&G after the Antares meeting, which are going to make it basically impossible for them to get access to what they need. Laurel gets off the call and answers the door to find Asher there with a large teddy bear. He tells her that he is there for her for whatever he needs and it’s all very sweet, although we later find out that he’s got some ulterior motives for this visit.
Connor calls Oliver and tells him all about Annalise’s speech at the D.A.’s office. He even compares her to Wonder Woman. Connor is hardcore stanning for Annalise at this point, which is interesting because he’s wanted to kill her for like three seasons. Later, Annalise and Connor split a large tub of strawberry ice cream and talk about their feelings, which is maybe the biggest plot twist in HTGAWM history.
Michaela is at the office (since she basically lives there now) and brings her new mom/mentor a bottle of gin to celebrate. Turns out the Antares meeting was to announce that the company is going public, which will be great for Tegan’s career. They have a bit of a heart-to-heart about how the job affects sex and relationships and Tegan opens up to Michaela that she lost the love of her life to the job. Michaela has really come to respect Tegan, and vice-versa, so she’s very much struggling with the fact that she’s betraying her trust with the whole Antares thing and that, if Laurel’s plan succeeds, she will be responsible for tanking Tegan’s career.
Laurel, who has found a suitable outfit, is at dinner with her dad (having arrived early so she can be seated and hide the bump). Her dad suggests they have champagne to celebrate, which Laurel doesn’t want and reluctantly takes a tiny sip of during a toast to Antares going public. Laurel stands to make a gazillion dollars off this deal, making her even richer than she already is, and her dad tells her to sign some papers. She doesn’t want anything to do with any of his shady business deals but he assures her that it’s all been cleaned up/taken care of (which, in his case, probably means he killed a bunch of people who knew things).
The fact that Antares is going public is a relief to Michaela and Oliver, who thought the meeting and subsequent bulked-up security was a result of the hack, but Laurel is more determined than ever to nail her dad. It’s all come together for her and she’s realized that the company going public is the reason that her dad had Wes killed. Wes was going to flip on Annalise, which would have opened up all of them—including Laurel—to charges related to the murders of Sam and Rebecca. So Laurel’s dad had Wes killed to protect Antares from blowback if Laurel was implicated. Oliver acknowledges that it makes too much sense not to be true and agrees to continue to help Laurel, who wants them to leak all the incriminating evidence before the company goes public.
At home, Annalise is trying and failing to complete her “homework” letter to Sam. She decides to just give up and instead bring the heartbreaking photograph of her and Sam with their dead son to show Isaac. She opens up to him about what happened with the baby and he also tells him that she tried to commit suicide after it happened. The only person who knew about it was Bonnie, who found her after she’d taken a bunch of sleeping pills and rushed her to the hospital to save her life.
This revelation triggers Isaac and sends him back to his therapist. She continues to insist that he stop seeing her because it’s obvious to her (and to anyone with eyes) that he’s starting to lose it. We soon learn the source of all of this: Isaac lost a child, too—his teenage daughter. And his therapist Jacqueline also happens to be his ex-wife and the mother of his deceased daughter. Jacqueline is also being triggered by all of this since she suffered the same loss as Isaac and talking about his Annalise situation is affecting her own mental health.
For once, Connor actually has a good idea. He comes up with a plan to have Tyrone write a letter to the newspaper about what the D.A.’s office is doing to him and his family. But Annalise decides a press conference is a better idea because the video will go viral. Tyrone does a great job making a plea to the governor and Annalise gives a statement as well, declaring her intention to file a class action suit and outing the D.A.’s office trying to derail her case. The whole thing is a success and the judge signs the injunction to save Tyrone’s family home. Claudia is grateful to her and agrees to stay on as part of the class action. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Connor saved the day.
Back at Laurel’s/Wes’s apartment, Oliver announces that he got the IT guy to show him the new tech and tell him how it all works. There will only be a few people with security to access the files, and this very select group includes Tegan. Michaela is having some serious doubts about the plan because her feelings for Tegan and her own ambitions for her career are getting in the way. Tegan had offered to hire Michaela once she starts her own practice, something she’ll only be able to do if the Antares deal goes through. Through all of this, the teddy bear Asher gave Laurel is sitting nearby and, turns out, it’s a nanny cam. Asher is watching the entire thing and he’s very distraught to learn that not only was Michaela lying to him again, but that everyone else seems to be in on it.
After everyone leaves, Frank shows up at Laurel’s house with some good news: he actually did well on his LSATs. I was convinced he was gonna tank the test so this was surprising. Less surprising is the fact that Frank is doing it all for Laurel. He’s convinced the baby is his but even if it isn’t, he wants to be a father to it. He tells Laurel that he loves her and he’ll wait for her. Despite Frank’s many MANY flaws, I’ve always been Team Flaurel so this was AMAZING.
Back at Michaela’s, Asher is dramatically packing all his things and confronts Michaela with the camera-bear evidence. He tells her he’s leaving if she doesn’t tell him the truth immediately and she finally spills the beans about the whole Laurel’s dad killed Wes/we’re trying to take down Antares thing. Even though she tells him the whole truth, he still leaves, which is kind of fucked up considering that, yes, she lied to him a lot, but it wasn’t really her secret to tell. Asher ends up at Bonnie’s house. He’s looking for Frank, because apparently they are besties now, but only Bonnie is there. They both end up crying in each others arms and it reminds me of how much I liked them as a couple.
The episode ends with Isaac crying watching home videos of his daughter and wife. At the same time, Jacqueline shows up at Annalise’s place and tells her she’s his ex-wife. Then we flash forward one week to Isaac on the phone saying, “Where are you? She’s awake,” which we’ve seen before. What we haven’t seen is Annalise’s whereabouts during all this and we discover at the very end that she’s catatonic in a shower somewhere, covered in blood.
While we’re still in the dark about what happened to Laurel’s baby and who exactly the victim is at C&G, we’re moving closer to getting some answers. But this is HTGAWM, so it’s safe to assume that the mid-season finale (just a few weeks away) will present us with an even larger mystery.
Tune in to How To Get Away With Murder on Thursdays at 10pm EST on ABC for more questions and (maybe) some answers.