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Revenge’s Emily Thorne or is it Amanda Clarke? – Character Clack

This week's Character Clack takes a look at 'Revenge's' Emily Thorne. In the finale, Emily was hit with the end of her engagement, a thwarted love connection, and with a non-dead mother. Join us as we analyze Emily's actions and what she will do next.

Revenge was one of the most intense new shows of last season. With deaths, revenge plots, and revealed secrets, the show kept the audience engaged and never quite knowing what was coming next. For this week’s Character Clack, we take a look at Revenge’s main character Emily Thorne f.k.a. Amanda Clarke (Emily VanCamp).

After spending much of her youth in a detention, Emily found out that her father was killed in prison. His decision to let her in on the truth set her on a path for revenge. Along the way, she has targeted people involved in her father’s wrongful conviction. Emily Thorne is no longer the sweet, innocent Amanda that played on the beach with Sammy and Jack.

Emily is such a complicated character that instead of asking one general question, I posed a few for the participants to consider. This week’s Character Clack participants include: Clackers Deb, Rachel, Christina and special guest Melissa Girimonte from The Televixen.

Is Emily out of control? Or, did her reluctance to kill the white-haired man show she has maintained some boundaries?

Deb: I think there are aspects of Emily that are out of control — namely, her whole quest for revenge. That alone shows us that she doesn’t have a handle on her feelings, hasn’t grieved properly, hasn’t been able to let go and move on. I’m not saying whether she should or not; frankly, she’s doing quite well for what she’s endured and the emotional surprises she continues to experience. And there’d be no show if she was self-actualized, so bring on the unbalance!

Melissa: I wouldn’t say she was out of control, but perhaps she was blinded by rage and things finally started to come into focus, hence the reluctance to kill the white-haired man. I think that at her heart, she believes in what is good and just, and that justice is what has carved this path out for her.

Christina: I think Emily was out of control at one time in the season, but has since regained it. Realizing that her father would not want her killing on his behalf helped with that. By no means do I think she’s backing off though; there is just a line she now knows she won’t cross.

Rachel: I think that Emily is not “out of control;” if anything, she has designed and executed her whole scheme of revenge under the utmost control. Is she crazy? Maybe. What we consider erratic, impulsive, volatile behavior is simply prescribed in Emily’s eyes, because it’s deserved. We do see moments when Emily’s emotions creep into her actions, but she tries her best to cast those aside. I think that her leading a double life and getting involved with Daniel (and remaining in constant contact with Jack) is bound to cast some doubts on her plan, because she begins to hurt actual people now, not just ideas or photos from her father’s box. I think that this is bothering her, and that Takeda’s warning keeps making more and more sense.

Carla: I agree with all of you that she isn’t necessarily out of control now. She definitely had moments when she lost control, which caused her problems. The confrontation with the white-haired man and her desire to kill him made her take a look at herself and what she was doing. Now that more secrets have been revealed and she was prevented from giving into her feelings for Jack, it will be interesting to see if she can hold it together.

Did Emily ever love Daniel?

Deb: Yes, I think there was a point that she loved Daniel and Jack at the same time. I think she thought (like I did) that he wasn’t just a chip off the old block and he could break out from his family’s “curse.” As soon as he backed Conrad and perpetuated the lies, though, Emily fell out of love very quickly.

Melissa: I think that she actually did grow to care for him deeply, but I don’t think she ever loved him.

Christina: I think Emily had feelings for Daniel that may have turned into love if he hadn’t turned into what his father wanted him to be. Her nostalgic love for Jack would always trump that, though, because now that Sammy is dead, he is the only positive connection to her life as Amanda.

Rachel: I don’t really think she ever loved Daniel in a truly romantic way, but she has grown close to him in a way that has affected her. He has become a comfort in her stressful life, even if she was never able to truly open up to him. She probably got used to not feeling lonely at night.

Carla: I think Emily did fall for Daniel, but as Deb mentioned, she quickly dismissed those feelings when he abandoned his honorable moral code.

Is there anyone that Emily trusts unconditionally? And, should she?

Deb: I’d say she likely trusts two people: Jack and Takeda. With Jack, she would have trusted him unconditionally; she was going to tell him everything, but pregnant Amanda ruined that. I’m not sure she should trust Takeda as much as she does, because although he’ll protect Emily, he doesn’t care about hurting the ones she loves.

Melissa: I don’t think so. I think the one living creature that she trusted implicitly was Sammy. But I do think that Jack could possibly be someone she trusts if she could tell him the truth.

Christina: Emily comes closest to trusting Nolan, but I don’t think she trusts him completely. I don’t think it’s in her nature anymore. She clearly doesn’t trust Jack (maybe he’s too nice) since she hasn’t told him her secrets. If she trusts anyone or anything, it’s the memory of her dead father. Nolan, being the closest link to that, gets the most trust, but she knows he’s not willing to go as far as she is.

Rachel: I think the only person who Emily trusts unconditionally is her father and the path he set forth for her. However, the fact that her mother is still alive and she never knew about it just might break that trust. What else could he have been hiding from her? To a lesser extent, she trusts Nolan to help her. I love Nolan as a character and think that she should trust him because he has never really let her down or been dishonest with her. Even though he often questions what she is doing, and occasionally threatens not to help her out, he always comes through for her in the end. And she does for him as well.

Carla: I find it interesting that Emily’s father is mentioned. I never gave him much thought for this answer. If she did trust him, then why didn’t she honor his request to let it go? Instead, she did the exact opposite and started her quest for revenge. I don’t think she trusts anyone entirely, but the closest would be Nolan. She may have trust Takeda, but he betrayed her the night of the engagement party. Then, there is Jack. He probably the person she should trust, but that would mean revealing herself to him. And, she’s not willing to do that.

Which situation do you think will be more difficult for Emily to handle: her love for Jack now that Amanda is back and pregnant? Or, dealing with her now not-dead mother?

Deb: As annoying as Amanda’s pregnant presence is, I don’t think that will throw Emily for long. She can handle that. But knowing that her mother is alive redefines her entire existence from childhood. That’s going to be a lot harder to come to grips with.

Melissa: Dealing with the now not-dead mom will probably be most difficult. She must feel a sense of betrayal over it. Really curious to see how that all plays out. Re: Jack – personally, I don’t think that Amanda’s baby belongs to him, so hopefully that storyline ends pretty quickly.

Christina: Emily will have a hard time with both situations, but in terms of Jack and Amanda, I think she can deal. She is used to not getting what she wants. On the other hand, her mother being alive is something that will completely change her view of the world and the facts of her life as she knows them. She may have to completely readjust what her goals are in light of that revelation.

Rachel: While dealing with the Jack/pregnant Amanda issue may hurt and confuse Emily, I think finding out about her mother will be the fuel to keep her revenge going even stronger. It will hurt and confuse her on a deeper level. Although much of this season’s goal was to be with Jack and confide in him, now she has a deeper purpose, and the romance will have to wait.

Carla: There seems to be consensus on this one. I think that  initially in the short term, Emily will have to deal with Amanda and her pregnancy. Like Melissa, I don’t think that Jack is the father. Instead, it was a plan concocted by Takeda to keep Emily away from Jack. A plan that I hope ultimately fails and blows up in his and Amanda’s faces. Emily’s non-dead mother is going to have far-reaching consequences for Emily and her plan.

Do you agree with our thoughts? Or, have we missed something? Share your thoughts on Emily Thorne in the comments!

Photo Credit: ABC

Categories: | Character Clack | Columns | General | Revenge | TV Shows |

2 Responses to “Revenge’s Emily Thorne or is it Amanda Clarke? – Character Clack”

June 28, 2012 at 12:30 AM

Perhaps Emily-nee-Amanda’s pregnancy will bring out her best instincts and thereby inspire Amanda-nee-Emily to reconsider her destructive vendetta? On second thought, this is a soap opera, not Homeland. Eventually, they will both revert to nature.

June 29, 2012 at 4:51 PM

I also agree with Melissa about Amanda’s baby probably not being Jack’s. It’s just a deterrent right now, but eventually, things will work themselves out. Only, will it then be too late for Emily to tell everything to Jack? In other words, was this her moment to come clean, and now it’s passed?

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