"How to Get Away with Murder" finally revealed who died in the fire that engulfed Annalise Keating's (Viola Davis) house. While it seemed like the Keating Five was in the clear, the writers did what they do best: completely mind-trick us all. It turns out the Keating Five is now the Keating Four, since Wes (Alfred Enoch) was under the sheet.
Wes has been the staple of the show since the first season, as Annalise considers him a surrogate son due to her past with his mother. He also had a huge role in the previous season's mysteries. In Season 1, he killed Sam Keating (Tom Verica), Annalise's husband, when he tried to murder Wes's girlfriend Rebecca (Katie Findlay). In Season 2, he shot Annalise after she goaded him by revealing that Rebecca was dead, not just missing like she had led him to believe. But even with their troubled history, Annalise always found a way to protect Wes from danger. However, the finale revealed that the district attorney's office offered Wes immunity in return for information about Annalise, which he seemingly agreed to before leaving the office. What exactly happened between him leaving the police station to his body being identified in the coroner's office is still unknown.
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At the end of the episode, Nate (Billy Brown) visits Annalise, who's in jail on charges of first-degree murder and arson. He quietly tells her that Wes was dead before the fire started. We saw that Nate entered the house – Annalise accidentally left it unlocked before she drunkenly left, but it is unclear what time entered, and when he left the house (note to future viewers: time is always the essence and importance on "HTGAWM"). Annalise requested that Laurel (Karla Souza), Michaela (Aja Naomi King), Connor (Jack Falahee), Asher (Matt McGorry) and Wes show up to the house – obviously Wes did. We saw Laurel enter the house but it exploded not long after. While Laurel is still alive and revealed to be pregnant, it can be assumed that she found Wes before the explosion because she asked the nurses about him.
Long story short: who killed Wes and blew up the house? And why? In the first two seasons' mid-season finales, the flash-forwards were finally pieced together and everything made sense. But in this season, there's still a whole other mystery to what we originally thought was the central one. It turns out that it's not really about who was under the sheet, but how they got into that position.
One of the biggest shortcomings of Season 2 was that the immediate aftermath of Annalise getting shot wasn't shown. Instead, the show fast-forwarded to Annalise returning home two weeks later. How the main and secondary characters handled her shooting was somewhat ignored. When season three returns from its midseason break, each character's response to Wes's shocking death should be delved into. The loss of Wes will have a huge impact on the show, its characters, and direction, and I hope to see him in flashbacks when the show returns.
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It will be interesting to see how Annalise handles this madness. She's already in a plethora of trouble: she's on probation with the legal disciplinary board and is holding onto her law license by the skin of her teeth, has broken her sobriety (which was a condition of her regaining her license), and has a shaky relationship with Middleton University. Her arrest, the charges against her, and the investigation against her by the DA's office may lead to her undoing. Annalise is an incredibly strong woman, but it's obvious to see that this is breaking her down. Losing Wes, someone she holds so dear to her, will also be incredibly tough.
Was this recap a whirlwind? Watching "HTGAWM" is often like that; all the flash-forwards, flashback sequences, plot twists, and cliffhangers lead to a wild ride that one couldn't get off of even if they tried. Although fans of "HTGAWM" will most likely be in mourning over one of the Keating 5 dying, especially since Wes has been so vital, the show will be going in a new direction. And I'm excited to see where it goes.
"How to Get Away with Murder" returns on Jan. 19, 2017.
Reach staff writer Adrianne Ramsey here.