'The Affair' Recap: Cole's Perspective Is a Real Game Changer

the affair season 2 episode 2Whether we Affair fans like it or not, last week's premiere delivered not only Noah Solloway's perspective but also his ex-wife Helen's. This week, we get Alison and her beleaguered ex Cole's take on the very same days.

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Unsurprisingly, Alison still seems to be a bit lost; she even admits as much to Noah's friends who have offered up not only the house they're residing in but now also a personal assistant gig to Alison. It's definitely less intense, but she's clearly still running from the same grief that haunted her in Montauk. We can't help but tear up for her as she watches a group of young boys play soccer in town, heartbroken as she thinks about her late son. 

Most of Cole's story line also felt pretty predictable. He's driving for the local cab company now that the Lockhart ranch has gone under, freezing out his family, snorting coke to stay awake through extra shifts behind the wheel, and generally looking like a total freakin' train wreck since Alison moved upstate.

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Both recall Cole's driving up to the house in Cold Springs to hand-deliver several of Alison possessions, but that basic fact is where the similarities between their memories ends.

Alison's memory paints Cole as an intruder whom she catches reading Noah's manuscript. Snake-like, he comes at her with biting words and scoffs at how Noah can't even do a little basic plumbing to fix the broken bathroom before proceeding to do it himself. Finally, on his way out, drops a bomb on Alison: coolly handing off the brightly painted trunk that holds all of their deceased son's possessions. No wonder she's left flustered and beside herself. Ugh.

But our sympathy quickly flips to confusion when Cole's version of the same meeting paints him as subdued and heartbroken. Even more jaw-droppingly, in his memory, he and Alison had tea and polite conversation and she made him eggs when she noticed he was hungry, and mused about a romantic day they spent together around New Year's before she was pregnant. Although she tells him she doesn't think she's "ever coming home," she runs after him as he heads back to his cab to pull him into a warm embrace. What the ...?!

Now, how was that for a reminder that all of our narrators on this journey are thoroughly unreliable? And it continues to be as frustrating as it is fascinating.

Also intriguing: Cole's POV on the courtroom scene, in which Noah is charged. His gaze is directed at Noah's being handcuffed and taken away -- then oh-so-dramatically shifts to Alison and her baby with Noah. There is something so eerily self-satisfied about that prolonged moment. We can only wonder: What does he know that no one does ... yet?

Maybe he killed his own brother and somehow managed to pin it on Noah? Is it a twisted attempt to get Alison back? It's not all that far-fetched a theory, right? At the very least, the possibility makes us want to see what else Cole knows. And we're guaranteed that, now that his vantage point has been added to the mix.

 

Image via Showtime

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