“The Affair” Season 1 Episode 8 aired on Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. on Showtime. It’s been four months since the Soloways returned from their summer break in Montauk; four months since the affair was revealed. But Noah found himself back in Montauk with Alison again. Find out what happened in this recap below.
NOTE: As the series is told in two storylines, the recap will be divided into Noah’s Story and Alison’s Story.
His story opened in the middle of school season. Noah (Dominic West) was discussing “Romeo and Juliet” with his class and reminded them how the story was about star-crossed lovers who shared a love so pure that the imperfect world they lived in couldn’t possibly sustain it. Was he alluding to his own relationship with Alison (Ruth Wilson)?
After class, Noah met with his wife Helen (Maura Tierney) in a restaurant. She had great news: her store was going to be featured in the Styles section of the New York Times. Noah couldn’t be more proud of her, but he hoped she would be pleased he bought her a Tiffany & Co. necklace for “sticking it out” after revealing his affair. Helen could not accept the expensive necklace, and Noah felt rejected.
They returned home, and Noah headed to his son’s room to discuss his report card with him. Martin (Jake Richard Siciliano) was having trouble, especially in Algebra. He hinted that he would like to move to a private school next semester, but Noah talked him out of it. Why don’t Martin give it another semester? He wanted to go to Science and Tech, didn’t he? His skills would be far better there than in a private school fishbowl.
Helen called Noah from Martin’s room to check on Whitney (Julia Goldani Telles), who sounded like she was forcing herself to vomit in the bathroom. She suspected their daughter was bulimic, and she asked her outright, but the teenager just shrugged it off. In the privacy of their bedroom, Helen wondered if she was really at fault as to why Whitney was acting out. When Noah told her she may be overreacting, Helen lashed out on him about their once being a team.
The two were at therapy the next day. Helen brought up her concern of skipping their return to Montauk to attend an event for her father in favor of watching over Whitney. Noah volunteered to be with Bruce, as Helen’s mom was apparently boycotting the event. But Helen couldn’t trust her husband in Montauk alone. He might try to contact Alison. Noah realized that after four months, Helen has yet to forgive him for the affair, when all he really wanted was to move on from this unfortunate episode in their marriage.
Noah: I’ve never made a single f*cking mistake in my whole goddamn life. A person can’t live like that.
Helen: Well, congratulations, you did it.
Noah: Yeah, now I’m sorry. I’m so f*cking sorry. And it had nothing to do with her, it’s not about her. She could have been anyone.
Helen: You know, that doesn’t make me feel better.
Noah: Please, you have to forgive me. I love you. We’ve been coming here for four months. I’ve taken all your fury. I walk out of here every Friday with a f*cking underwear on my head. All I want is to move on.
The therapist seemed to side with Noah, though, and so in the next few scenes, Noah was back in the summer place again.
Bruce Butler (John Doman) was being awarded the Lifetime Achievement by a literary group, and Alison was working the party for him. Noah spotted her, and they had a brief and awkward encounter, which Bruce saw. He then coaxed his son-in-law to step outside so they could talk. He asked if she was the girl Noah was sleeping with, and Noah was shocked to learn that Helen discussed this with him. But Noah was mistaken; Bruce learned it from someone else. Bruce also noted that Alison was his muse and that when he stopped seeing her, he stopped writing his second book too. Bruce also learned that from someone else.
Bruce then went on to tell the story of a woman he had affair with when Helen was still young. But he ended this for the sake of his family. The book he wrote while having that affair, however, earned him his lone Pulitzer.
The party was done, and Bruce left ahead of Noah. He saw Alison talking on the phone, clearly upset, and so he approached her. Turned out, her grandmother was at the hospital, and she may soon lose her. Alison needed to get to her, but she had no car. Seeing the desperation on her face, Noah offered to drive her. When they got there, she asked him to come inside the hospital, but he refused.
Noah was back at the Butler house and saw how Bruce struggled with his limping leg. It was probably the first time he saw the old man being vulnerable, so he helped him get up. Before Bruce retired to his bedroom, Noah asked him if he ever thought about that woman he had an affair with, and Bruce responded that he did, every single day.
With that, Noah was back at the hospital with Alison and witnessed how she said her final goodbyes to her grandmother. Later, Noah drove to an empty parking lot and stayed there with Alison, who looked so peaceful sleeping in the passenger’s side. Noah was pensive and staring at her. What was going through his mind?
Cut to the present day with the detective who was dropping in on Noah’s book event for “The Descent.” It apparently became a monumental hit, with a movie deal to boot. The detective watched and listened as Noah read a passage from his book about a blue boat, and the detective checked his phone for a picture of that boat, which was next to the sign of The End, the club Noah earlier denied knowing about to the detective.
Her story opened at the Lockhart ranch. Alison was preparing dinner with her mother-in-law, and it looked like whatever she learned about Alison’s indiscretion was a thing of the past. They were happy, animated and talking about secret Santa, and the Lockhart son who was brought to the hospital (in Episode 7 air date: Nov. 23, 2014) had recovered pretty well.
The other Lockhart boys were moving boxes; they were preparing to sell the place. Scotty (Colin Donnell) brought down a box that belonged to Gabriel, which made Alison tensed for a few minutes, but her mother-in-law insisted she will keep this box.
At dinner, the Lockharts discussed what they were going to do with the money they will get for selling the house, but Cole (Joshua Jackson) reminded his mother and brothers that they will still have to get an appraisal and interview real estate agents. They also needed to fix the house a little bit, and just as Cole brought this up, they noticed water coming from the ceiling. His mother forgot that she was running a bath on the tub.
Back in their house, Cole discussed with Alison that his mother may be going senile and that he would like to have her tested for early onset of Alzheimer’s. Alison, however, thought that Cole’s mother was only trying to slow down selling the house so she has been doing these things. They got into bed and proceeded to talk about what they would do with the money.
Cole: I’m gonna burn it for fuel.
Alison: I want you to buy something you’ve always wanted.
Cole: I have everything I’ve always wanted.
The two proceeded to get intimate. The next day, Alison took a pregnancy test, and it was negative. While having breakfast with her husband, she received a call from Athena (Deirdre O'Connell), her mother. Her grandma was at the hospital. Alison went there alone as she insisted Cole stay to talk to the appraiser.
At the hospital, Alison and her mother had another argument about having her sign the Do Not Resuscitate order. It was a situation they could never see eye-to-eye on. Seeing that her grandmother was stable, Alison went back to the ranch, where she found Cole talking to the appraiser. He briefly asked her about her grandmother, but they went on with their day as usual. Alison needed Cole to drive her to a catering job, though.
When she got there, Alison realized that the party was for Bruce Butler, and immediately, she wanted to bail from work. She told her boss she wasn't feeling well, but the truth was, she only wanted to avoid seeing the Soloways and Noah. Her boss assigned her to work at the coat check instead. But she was still spotted by Noah.
The two shared a smoke during her break, and as he remarked that she looked beautiful, she told him how she’s trying to get pregnant again with Cole. Noah was about to step back in, when Alison received another call from her cell phone about her grandmother. So Noah drove her to the hospital, and in this version, he offered to come in with her, but she said no.
She saw that her grandmother was only alive because of all the tubes stuck inside her, and once again, Alison fought with her mother about this. Alison wanted to keep her as long as possible; Athena thought it was time to let nature take its course. She turned to Noah for answers, him having gone through a similar situation with his own mother.
Noah: Letting go can be the most compassionate thing you can do.
And so, her grandmother was gone. Not a few minutes after, Athena told her she was leaving town right away. She was not even staying for the funeral, and this made Alison mad at her even more.
Later, Noah drove Alison back to the ranch. But she didn’t leave his car right away. They stayed there for a few minutes in silence. And then, without touching nor kissing, they said their I love you's to each other. She carefully got out of the car and walked back to the Lockhart house where she heard everyone in the dining room. Alison skipped going to them and instead headed to his mother-in-law’s room to sift through Gabriel’s old box for comfort.
Cut to the present and the detective was at Scottie Lockhart’s funeral, which apparently took a while to happen. The detective spotted Alison sitting far at the back. Why was she not with her family?
Later, the detective returned to The End to have the desk clerk check some details again, and there, he got confirmation that Noah did have a reservation but canceled it last minute. He also asked the desk clerk for a referral for someone who can fix his fender bender.
The detective was on to something, and there are only two more episodes left to the series before the truth came out.
— The Affair (@SHO_TheAffair) December 8, 2014
So that’s the recap for “The Affair” Season 1 Episode 8, which aired on Dec. 7, 2014, at 10:00 p.m. on Showtime. Check out some highlights to the episode in these videos below.
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Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons/Gage Skidmore