Why Should I Watch "The Affair"
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Why 'The Affair' Is So Captivating

Watch the affair for its realness and complexity. Read at your own risk, there are spoilers!

Why 'The Affair' Is So Captivating

"The Affair" on Showtime originally premiered in October of 2014. Now, in the fourth season Noah Solloway and Alison Bailey have come a long way. I really like the show because it's cleverly structured in the way that it flips between characters and their perspectives. Every episode shows how there are overlaps and differences in each person's point of views.

At first, I was confused by this setup, but as the show continued I began to understand the purpose. In an affair, and any situation for that matter, there are two people involved. Each person has their own idea of what happened or how events transpired. One might believe the other seduced them, while the supposed "seducer" doesn't even believe they were doing so. This is the case with Noah and Alison. You really begin to question the truth of what actually happened. It makes you realize that no matter what, no two people can ever be in agreement of a situation that transpired. This is incredibly realistic and makes the show absolutely amazing.

The show also removes the idea that any one person is truly a villain. Yes, Noah and Alison cheat on their spouses, but they do things later that make up for it. For example, it is revealed at the end of the second season that Noah goes to prison for three years for his ex-wife Helen. Helen was driving because Noah was drunk. In the process of getting home, she commits the hit-and-run murder of Scott Lockhart. Noah makes the decision to plead guilty to the crime to prevent Helen and Alison from paying the price. Alison was also involved as the one who pushed Scott Lockhart into the road, causing his death.

One episode in the fourth season really makes you think about the dynamic between mistress and cheated-on wife. Alison and Helen, Noah's ex-wife, have a truly interesting relationship. Helen does not hate Alison for the damage inflicted upon her family. She realizes that her now ex-husband Noah was just as much a part of the decision to have an affair as Alison was. However, they share the same title as the ex-wife of Noah Solloway by the third season. In one episode they discuss at a bar the characteristics they believed Noah exemplified. Alison views him in a much more masculine way, and it shows how an affair really brings out parts of a personality that aren't active in a marriage. It shows that Noah might have wanted to be that person through all those years with Helen.

It's really interesting to see the difference between these two women he loved. Whether or not the love with Alison was real, there was enough there for him to leave his first wife. Helen, a strong, rich, mother to his four children, is displaced by a woman whose life seems to be in shambles from the loss of her four-year-old son and works as a waitress. The dual perspective of the show is furthered by the dichotomy of both women. It really makes you wonder who the real Noah Solloway is.

The results of an affair are shown so realistically, and the way the children think of their father is clearly depicted. There is no picture-perfect result of Noah and Alison's actions. Families get dragged along for the ride whether or not they want to be. In addition, we see how marrying a mistress never turns out the way people think it will.

All in all, I think that there is a nice realness to the series. We see good and bad of both sides, and we are forced to confront the reality that neither is a good option. It makes you wonder if everything is really as it seems, or if we're all fooling ourselves in our own relationships. I am so excited to see the next episodes following the death of Alison (Episode 408) and what comes for the rest of the characters.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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