Alison’s side! She pulled a Kelly on 90210 and she chose HERSELF. She’s been spending the last four months in a yoga retreat with her hippie mother and the new boyfriend. But she has to leave. It’s almost summer. She wants to sell her house. Alison goes back to Montauk, starting by having a reunion with her friend Phoebe. She tells Phoebe that when Noah fingerbanged her (a scene that we only saw in Noah’s “memory,” FYI), he really looked at her, and nobody else ever really looked at her. They’re trying to get back to that moment.
Her reminiscing is interrupted by Mary-Kate, fellow Lockhart-in-law. Mary-Kate is cold. The Lockharts lost the ranch last week, and Alison just dropped the family cold. She gives Alison a ride back to her place.
Cole’s there, waiting. He’s fixed up the house and he’s ready to try again. Alison, though, she’s in a different place. She offers to give him the gorgeous beach house shack. They’re not going to reunite, though. They have an awful fight. Alison blames Cole for not looking close enough at dead Gabriel that fateful day when he was swimming. He strikes back with why didn’t we go to the hospital. Then Alison says something mean and cold. She tells Cole, sweet Cole, that the reason she can’t be with him is because every time she looks at him, she sees Gabriel. She wants to forget about Cole. It was awful. Mary-Kate interrupts — Whitney Solloway is at the ranch. They should go.
[Detective Framing Device has outmaneuvered Noah! The AAA guy was bugged, and now he has some proof that Noah has something to hide. What a day for Detective Framing Device! Also an urgent call from “Steve” who is a “babe” proves that this “family man” is gay! Tricking Noah and Alison! What fun! The best day!]
At the ranch, Whitney and Alison drink cokes together. Whitney, genius, does tell Alison that her husband is so hot and she is an idiot for sleeping with her father. Which is the truth. Noah and Helen show up at the ranch, and Cole bursts in with a gun and some showboating. He’s unhinged, pointing the gun at the Solloways, himself, Alison. He’s ranting and raving about how he lost his wife to Noah. He offers to shoot himself in front of Alison, “so you have this image burned into your head for the rest of your life.” Joshua Jackson is doing a good job here. It’s very emotional. But Alison talks him down, taking the gun from him. Cole leaves. Helen and Whitney leave. Noah, dammit, stays, hugging Alison instead of comforting his traumatized wife and daughter. Eighteen years carries no weight with the guy. No wonder your daughter seeks succor in the flesh of men entirely too old for her, Noah. What a dick.
The last scene. Are there answers here? We are in a fancy New York apartment. Alison with a bob (i.e., “present day”) is cuddling next to Noah on a couch, as a baby gurgles. Are they together? Are they hiding something about Scotty’s death? Has time passed enough for a baby? Is Noah entirely too successful for a literary author? (Probably.) Well, even though your questions are ostensibly answered, dear audience, the episode has to end with some kind of twist, right? There’s a knock on the door. It’s the police, there to arrest Noah. Alison looks on with horror and wonder, a look with all the mystery in the world — leading us into the next season.
Will our questions ever be answered? Will Detective Framing Device ever really be good at his job? I guess we’re going to have to wait until 2015! But until then, don’t forget the gifts that The Affair left us with: namely, Joshua Jackson shirtless, Joshua Jackson holding a gun, Joshua Jackson in some sexy sex scenes, and best of all, Joshua Jackson riding a horse.