“Betrayal” (1.4) recap: That’s Not What Ships are Built For

 
 

If you’re just tuning in to ABC’s new hit drama Betrayal, you may not have heard what went down in the previous three episodes. We’re particularly interested in last week’s explosive ep, in which Jules (Sofia Black D’Elia), a sassy IT girl who works for Karsten family in-house attorney Jack McAllister (Stuart Townsend) meets his daughter Valerie (Elizabeth McLaughlin) and sparks fly.

Of course, there’s still the adult-drama to contend to—where Sara (Hannah Ware) is even more wrapped up in the web of lies she’s spun with her new boy toy Jack, who just so happens to be caught in his own web with her husband, Drew Stafford (Chris Johnson)—Assistant State’s Attorney and opposing side in a murder case taking up the front page of the Chicago Times with TJ Karsten at the stake.

However, problems have popped up, and the star-witness for Drew’s team (the dead man’s wife) has fled to an unknown location and Thatcher Karsten (James Cromwell) is using his power and whoring himself out to the Judge Monica Westbourne who is hearing the case and setting bail the same day. Good thing it isn’t beneath her to sex it up, posting bail at a cool $1 million in trade for son’s guaranteed admission to a college law school. Yuck, though.

In the meantime, a super cute moment goes down back at the Jack McAllister compound when Jules gives Jack the lowdown on her asking Valerie on a date. (Gasp!) As the two actresses have already told us, the romance between Jules and Valerie is not just going to be a teenage coming-out story. Though there will be a momentary hiatus for the next few episodes, we can expect to see these two coming together again soon. In fact, their sexuality is the least of the focus—and Jack agrees. He also eventually caves and waves the OK for the two girls to go out. Phew!

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Jack: You asked Val on a date?

Jules: She likes girls. I thought you knew.

Jack: I do know. Girls aren’t the problem—you’re the problem. You work here and you’re too old.

Jules: I’m not old.

Jack: Compared to Val?  (Pauses) A date.

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As quickly as Jack can green light the date, he’s in a cab with Sarah for a quick groping session and asks her to go away with him for the night. She agrees to meet him at the marina where his boat is docked. And suddenly, the moment we’ve all been waiting for in a show like this (because if not, this betrayal wouldn’t be getting a lot of drama points) happens: An anonymous camera snaps the secret lovebirds kissing. Uh oh! One can only assume where this will lead. Could a Karsten be involved?

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Speaking of the devil, over at yet another ritzy, mahogany-walled Thatcher Karsten hang-spot, the real estate mogul is trying desperately to get his regular partners in crime on his side, but he should probably get used to hearing the words, “Things are changing.” As if shacking up in a hotel with the woman and her gavel wasn’t enough, it seems like this business conversation is painting a real-life portrait of Chicago politics and their history with corruption. Men like Drew Stafford might just change the city and all its scandal for good—eliminating monsters like Thatcher. Or will he?

More importantly, Jules and Valerie have been having a little fun while Dad McAllister was away, too. When Jack gets home after his maiden voyage, he walks in to hear some sexy music playing and Jules lounging on his living room couch—having seemingly slept over the night before.  Jules admits, “Well, if I’m being honest, there really wasn’t a lot of sleep.” Heyo!

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Jack is super pissed, but mostly at the fact that she’s drinking straight out of the OJ carton, and tells her she needs to leave. Poor Jules offers up that  nothing’s happened and he shouldn’t be upset. But Jack, who’s still trying to get his legs back on land, is clearly at odds with his own deceit. Headed out the door, totally pajama-clad, Jules tells Jack, “I really like her you know.” Aw! Jack nods, ‘cause, duh—he knows how unstoppable liking someone can be. OK Jules, you’re forgiven.

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After Valerie’s parents give her a speech about not sneaking around, Jack’s wife Elaine reminds him that they used to be that way together when they were teenagers—sneaking and lying, which I think turns Elaine on because she’s always bringing up their young love (something Jack still knows quite a bit about). But I particularly love Val’s eye-roll and her willingness to be upfront that that she and Jules did not have sex. That’s right, even lezzies can keep their pants on and just marathon movies all night. Sounds pretty damn healthy with all the other mischief going on.

So where’s their so-called date? With just 15 minutes left of the episode, I was waiting with bated breath for Jules and Val to kick this into high gear and check out a new indie film or see some classic Chicago comedy improv, but nada. We’re waiting…

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As the final act of the episode reaches its boiling point, a man who crosses Thatcher is nailed to cement. The P.I. with the camera turns out to be a man working for Thatcher himself who’s trying to dig up dirt on Sara as leverage against Drew. And TJ’s hooker friend Brandy plants a bug in Thatcher’s office for Drew’s people to listen in on. Not even the nasty sunburn left over from Sara’s Lake Michigan sexcapade is safe from the truth. It seems it’s only a matter of time before Thatcher slips and says something, Sara’s infidelity is exposed, and, of course, Jules and Val make that date a reality.

 
 

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