How to Get Away With Murder season 3 review

***Spoiler warning!

+ “Who is under the sheet” mystery: This creative premise hooked audiences into season 3 and provided a concrete reason to return each week up to the mid-season finale. The stakes were higher than ever with the life of an unknown core character on the line, keeping audiences guessing and frantically trying to put the pieces together.

Ultimately Wes was an excellent choice for the mystery’s reveal. Audiences were more emotionally invested in Wes than many of the main characters and all the surviving characters had strong, complicated emotional ties to Wes as well. This kept audiences hooked after the mid-season finale. I’m not sure any other characters would’ve provided the same emotional investment from both the audience and characters within the story. And no one had as complicated and emotional a relationship with Wes as Annalise, so his death opened up even more intriguing routes for her character development as the central figure of the story.

Wes was furthermore an excellent choice because his character development felt very complete up to this point. The only other character with as much development and backstory at this point was Annalise. We’d seen Wes as the naïve and innocent “puppy,” a hardworking and independent law student, a manipulator, the one manipulated, the one who takes a strong moral stand, as someone who acts desperately, as the victim and even as a murderer. Through these experiences we saw Wes pushed to his furthest limits. His story and character development felt very complete while many of the other characters still have a great deal of untapped potential. The choice to kill Wes was shocking, bold, and also deceptive due to the show manipulating the timeline behind the reveals of who survived the night of the fire. Above all it was a fitting choice that behooved the show.

– Too many unanswered questions about the night of the fire: While HTGAWM tends to leave cliffhangers, the show also has a tendency to leave with the questions surrounding the season’s primary mystery to be answered. Season 1 ended with the cliffhanger of why Frank killed Lila for Sam, but all questions about the night of Lila’s murder were answered. This season failed to do that as we are left with way too many unanswered questions about the night of the fire. Why did Annalise call the Keating 5 to the house? Who did Wes call in the taxi when he referred to himself as Cristophe? Did Wes go straight to the house after riding in the taxi and placing that mysterious phone call? Who was the anonymous source who helped frame Annalise? Hopefully all these questions will be answered. The problem is some of these questions feel more like plot holes than cliffhangers.

The reveal of who killed Wes: I have mixed feelings about the reveal that Laurel’s father was the engineer behind the death of Wes. I like the reveal because of the tantalizing prospects it creates for season 4. There is finally payoff for the frequent mentions of Laurel’s father, what a dangerous man he is, and his meeting with Laurel earlier in season 3. Also, the reveal was shocking to me. My main suspects were Nate and Bonnie. I never even considered Laurel’s father. There’s something satisfying about experiencing genuine shock about a work of fiction.

Yet, the shock is also one of the reasons I dislike the reveal. Despite frequent mentions Laurel’s father has barely been in the show. Thus, Laurel’s father being the engineer behind the death of Wes feels a little bit too much out of left field to the point that it’s the kind of shock that doesn’t totally make sense. The reveal felt more real when juxtaposed with Annalise’s palpable grief and raw honesty in the final scene of the season.

What to look forward to in season 4:

  • Discovering why Laurel’s father wanted Wes killed
  • How and when will Laurel discover that her father engineered the death of Wes? How will she react?
  • The same questions but regarding Annalise . . . And what is Annalise going to do with her life now?
  • What is Denver’s connection with Dominic and Laurel’s father?
  • Does Laurel’s father have any ties to the Mahoney family? What role if any does the Mahoney family still have to play?
  • Connor is one of the only core characters we don’t have much backstory for yet. It was hinted at in the season 3 finale, but will we finally receive more of Connor’s backstory?
  • The future of the Oliver-Connor and Michaela-Asher relationships

What did you think about season 3 of HTGAWM? What are you looking forward to most in season 4? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

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