This episode of UnREAL launched several new dynamics into the series as many plot twists were introduced. With all of this action occurring in the third episode of the series, it is interesting in seeing just where this will take the series. After all, the tables have flipped on Quinn and Rachel as both are slipping into dangerous territory.
Picking up after last week’s episode, Quinn is still sleeping with contestant August. She calls it off fairly quickly, which is the most sensible thing she has done in a while, but it isn’t without a battle scar. It seems Quinn got a UTI from sleeping with August which makes her even more agitated than usual.
Quinn sleeping with a contestant is career ending, as brought up by Rachel, but what makes it even worse is that Serena is now falling for August after he charmed her on a one-on-one date. Meanwhile August is head over heels for Quinn. It is a PR disaster waiting to happen, with dire consequences.
Quinn also followed up on the pitch meeting with Jay, who was not impressed with his pitch on a television show on underground gay trap music nightclubs. It isn’t until Alexi, the Russian ballet dance, kisses Jay (I love gay characters on shows, but this is the third time in three seasons this has been done) and he approaches Quinn about having the show be about nightclubs all over the world with Alexi hosting it.
Meanwhile Rachel has officially rolled back her essential honesty policy and, in an amazingly edited montage, manipulated Owen and Jasper into keeping a secret from Serena. For Jasper signed up for the show on a $400,000 bet that he would be the first one to bed Serena (which he has already lost to Norman the Jockey so Jasper better pay up).
Being back to lying sends Rachel spinning and she confides in Doctor Simon about how she manipulated Jeremy into killing Yael and Cole last season. Of course, she didn’t think it would end in murder but she knew deep inside that it was a possibility. Maybe for Rachel, keeping the darkness locked inside is healthier than letting it out. Her word vomit is born of guilt and it isn’t healthy to keep it inside, but the amount of trouble that she can get not only herself in, but everyone else is astounding. The guilt also sends her stalking a man on Facebook. The man who no doubt raped her as a child.
In the midst of all this is Chet, who is still desperately trying his best to win an Emmy for Everlasting. Before all of Rachel’s breakdowns occur, she goes rogue against Quinn’s orders and helps Chet film some B-roll asking the boys about how they view women and if they are feminists. With how Chet adapted so comfortably to asking probing questions to him coming to Quinn saying that there’s a real story there to be told, it is possible that this man will be one of the biggest pillars to save Everlasting. If not, then he has footage that can be spun into a short documentary exposing the behind-the-scenes reality of the show and the contestants on it, which is disastrous for Quinn.
If it wasn’t clear from the first two episodes, UnREAL is certainly back to form. It is witty and manipulative, which is what we all signed up for in the first place. There are a lot of avenues for the story to go this season and it is riveting learning more about these characters and what they will do to produce reality television.
UnREAL is available to stream on Stan every Tuesday.