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‘The Affair’ Review: The New Fall Drama That Keeps You Wanting More

Mon, October 13, 2014 10:45am EDT by Emily Longeretta 1 Comment
The Affair Review
Courtesy of Showtime

An intriguing set up, a unique point of view, and excellent writing and acting. ‘The Affair’ has all the ingredients to make a successful show, so it’s no surprise it had me on the edge of my seat from the first scene to the last.

The Affair hit the silver screen with a bang — actually, with a lot of banging! The sensual drama takes a dive inside the lives of two couples. Noah (Dominic West) and Helen (Maura Tierney) are parents of four, who head to Montauk to spend the summer at Helen’s parents. There, we meet Alison (Ruth Wilson) and Cole (Joshua Jackson), a married couple with a dark history that’s slowly pulling them apart. And pulling Noah in her direction.

‘The Affair’ Review

All you need is love — or maybe not. For Noah and Helen, their life looks like the perfect family: four kids in a NYC brownstone, heading to Long Island to spend the summer on the beach in Montauk with Helen’s rich father. However, they’re far from perfect; immediately, Noah finds himself looking for more.

That’s where Alison comes in, a younger woman who works at the local diner. The Affair premiere took place over one day, split into two perspectives: how Noah saw it, versus how Alison saw it.

With voiceovers during both perspective, we quickly learn that Alison is struggling to get over the loss of her four-year-old son and reconnect with her husband, Cole, who is growing more and more frustrated. The two try to stay intimate to keep them close, but are quickly growing apart following the horrifying accident.

When Noah meets Alison, there is immediate spark between the two and they’re physically drawn together, regardless of their significant others. But he remembers their first night together much differently than she does.

‘The Affair’: So Much More Than Cheating

Creator Sarah Treem‘s view of infidelity is much more than cheating or sex. Her visions come across extremely strong on screen and through the extremely diverse writing and direction. It’s tough to pull off a two part show, the same day from two different perspectives, and keep the viewer’s attention.

However, this didn’t just keep my attention, but drew me in more and more.

While the story appeared to be told by the characters talking to a therapist, we learn at the end of the episode that both Noah and Alison are in an investigation room. And Alison needs to go pick up her child. However, through the emotional episode, we know her son has killed. The start-at-the-end premieres aren’t usually my style.

But I couldn’t be more intrigued.

She also knew what she was doing with casting: Ruth Wilson wows as Alison, conveying just how extremely heartbroken she is by the look on her face, with Josh proves that while his career has been full of comedic roles, he’s a serious, multi-layered actor. Dominic portrays a confused Noah, who does an amazing job of being caught with what he should want and what he does want, while Maura is an amazing mother, who I’m sure we’ll see a ton more of.

Tune in to Showtime’s The Affair every Sunday at 10PM.

— Emily Longeretta

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