How to Get Away with Murder just finished its second season, and so far it is not at all impressive. What started as a ground-breaking and provocative television series is rapidly becoming mundane and vapid. This was expected, however, seeing as Shonda Rhimes is the executive producer of the show. Though Rhimes is deserving of respect and admiration for her creativity, she tends to go off tangent with her TV series as seen in shows like Scandal and /Grey’s Anatomy/. Hence, it is of little to no surprise that How to Get Away with Murder has taken a similar turn.
Despite the lacklustre season viewers had to endure for the past few months, people shouldn’t be too quick to condemn the show. It is worth noting that How to Get Away with Murder’s popularity stems from its successful first season which had an intricate yet riveting twist to it. During the first season, the plot was narrated in a non-linear fashion and heavily relied on flashbacks to make sense of the situation at hand. Featuring a reputable criminal defence attorney and law professor, Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) teaches a course on “How to Get Away with Murder” from which she selects five of her most competent students—Wes (Alfred Enoch), Michaela (Aja Naomi King), Connor (Jack Falahee), Asher (Matt McGorry), and Laurel (Karla Souza)—to come intern at her private firm. Every week, the interns work with one of Annalise’s clients and are usually given the tedious task of researching and carrying out important inquiries under the supervision of Annalise’s assistants, Bonnie (Liza Weil) and Frank (Charlie Weber). While the interns work on petty legal cases, the focus quickly shifts when Annalise gets mired in a criminal investigation when she finds out that her husband, Sam (Tom Verica), had an affair with one of his students whom they found dead. As a result, Annalise and her interns increasingly grow suspicious of Sam which ultimately leads to the involuntary manslaughter of the former by Annalise’s interns—making things all the more complicated. From that point onwards, the looming question seems to be: Will they get away with murder?
The concept of the show is brilliant, and had Rhimes delivered the second season like she did with the first, the show could have easily been topped among other phenomenal TV series such as House of Cards and Game of Thrones The underlying problem with season two of How to Get Away with Murder is its lack of structure. Unlike the first season, which had its events flow logically, the second seems to be all over the place and overwhelms the viewer with too much information. Moreover, the show introduced many forgettable characters this past season that detracted from the main plot of the show. Frankly, the season could have done without all the extras. Finally, it appears that Rhimes was more concerned about its characters’ love lives than the advancement of the plot itself. The multiple scenes of heated foreplay may have added an edge and enticed some viewers, but it was by no means necessary.
However, the upcoming season could still be good. The show can redeem itself and probably negate this review by coming back with the force with which it first started with back in season one. That being said, make sure not to set your expectations too high so as to avoid any kind of disappointment—a mistake that gets repeated when watching any one of Rhimes’ shows.