Absentia Season 2 Episode 3 Review: Guilty

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Emily Byrne is a professional at compartamentalizing and that was on full display on Absentia Season 2 Episode 3.

She had just found out that her biological mother was still alive, only to lose her again after kicking the woman out of her home. 

That set of circumstances would have left most people curled up in the fetal position and in tears. 

Emily Visits the Morgue - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

But Emily Byrne is not most people. 

Undoubtedly, she will have to deal with the emotional fallout of this loss at some point.

She'd turned her back on her biological mother, didn't believe the woman's story, practically told her she was crazy, and then left her unprotected. 

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The guilt of those events must be overwhelming, but if she's feeling it at this moment, Emily's not about to let it show. 

Emily Looks For Information - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

Instead, she's channeling it into hunting down her mother's killer, and as I write that I'm having flashbacks to Stana Katic's previous role of Kate Beckett on Castle, but I digress. 

Lester: You find the bastard who did it.
Emily: They’ll pay, I promise.

I felt bad for Lester. No matter what you think of him, he loved Valerie and the moment he wasn't there to protect her she ended up dead. That must be a difficult loss to bear. 

But where Lester can take the time to mourn, Emily has thrown herself headlong into solving her mother's murder which took her back to the FBI.

The moment Tommy said that the Feds had taken over the case, I half expected Emily to ask him to leave. She's been using him for sex and information and even Tommy seemed to know that the investigation outweighed the sex for Emily.

Tommy Has Bad News - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

When she called him to the bar to tell him she'd gone back to the FBI, I'm not sure it was her intention to break up with him, but when Tommy said she no longer had any use for him, she didn't correct him either. 

It's clear the guy would do almost anything for Emily. He's run off-the-books investigations for her and made a low level autopsy a priority simply because she asked. 

Related: Absentia Season 2 Episode 2 Review: Madness

But Emily seems almost incapable of letting herself feel anything for anyone other than Flynn, and even that's a struggle sometimes. 

Unfortunately, Flynn has his own issues and they may be more serious than anyone expected.

Having a Tough Time - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

The poor kid completely lost it when he couldn't get out that door and I'm a little concerned that neither his parents nor his therapist realized how close he's been to the edge.

I was shocked that Alice didn't come down harder on Emily when she stumbled across her coming down from that cocaine high.

Whatever you do on your own time isn’t my business, but tomorrow and any time you’re around Flynn you better be sober.


Did Emily have to get high to gain that dealer's trust? Maybe not, and that's troublesome. Also, I'm still not sure if Emily gets high to escape her memories or in the hopes of bringing them back more vividly to help with her investigation. 

But at least my previous question was answered. Alice and Nick are not in a good place and Nick is more than happy to hide in his work to avoid it.

Alice: Are you even listening?
Nick: I just got a break in the case. I’ve got to go.
Alice: Of course you do. Well, thanks for punching in.
Nick: I’m doing my best. You know that right, or were you just playing the role of understanding wife in front of the shrink?

What's most disturbing is that Flynn is suffering while his father either doesn't notice or expects Alice to hold things together.

Alice Isn't Happy - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

Yes, Nick's job investigating a terrorist attack is incredibly important, but it couldn't have been lost on him that Tyler Brandon Mills' father wasn't around enough to notice his son had problems, nevermind was on the path to becoming a terrorist. 

But it doesn't bode well for the Durands that Alice couldn't get Nick to stick around for even a few minutes to talk about Flynn's treatment after he beat a kid in group therapy.

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Once again, Alice was left confiding in Jack because her husband wasn't around to listen.

Goodness knows Jack had his own issues.

Not The News He's Hoping To Hear - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

As hard as Jack has worked at remaining sober and getting his life back, it has only been six months. 

The fact that the hospital hired him as an EMT was a big step but expecting them to hire him back as a surgeon so soon might be expecting too much. 

That said, Jack was right to perform the surgical procedure in the ambulance, even if it was against the rules. He's a licensed doctor and it would have been morally wrong to let the man die when he had the skills to save him. 

Unfortunately, the hospital administrator is more concerned with covering the hospital from a possible lawsuit over saving a life. 

Finally, we get back to the terrorist attack on FEMA.

Tyler Gets Away - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

Nick did a great job of playing Colin, the head of the Patriot Guardians, in order to get him to give up Tyler.

Colin: I didn’t tell you a damn thing.
Nick: Yet that’s not what your fellow Guardians are going to think when I tell the press that you ID’d them all.
Colin: You think they’re going to believe a bunch of corrupt Feds?
Nick: Well, you know better than I do that a little confusion and a lot of fear goes a long way.

Like it or not, fear and ignorance are easily manipulated. 

But when Tyler's booby trap was tripped in the basement, I couldn't believe that Nick and Julianne just stood there! Tyler could have released more gas or had a bomb.

They're darn lucky he only had them on camera.

So what do you think TV Fanatics? How long can Emily hold onto that fake smile at the FBI?

Forcing a Smile - Absentia Season 2 Episode 3

Will Nick or one of the other agents figure out her connection to the case?

And is there any chance she'll tell Tommy she wants him for something more than information and sex?

Check back in for my review of Absentia Season 2 Episode 4, and until then, you can watch Absentia online here at TV Fanatic.

Guilty Review

Editor Rating: 4.4 / 5.0
  • 4.4 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 2.3 / 5.0 (22 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Absentia Season 2 Episode 3 Quotes

Drug dealer: That shit’s everywhere. You can buy it online. There ain’t no such thing as pure Fentanyl on the street.
Emily: You sure about that?

Emily: Can you get them to run a tox screen, please?
Tommy: That may take a while. She’s not exactly a priority.
Emily: Tom, she told me someone was after her. Someone killed her, I can feel it. Can you make it a fucking priority?
Tommy: Okay.