‘The Affair’ Recap: Wife Meets Mistress, Book Excerpts From ‘Descent’ Revealed

The Showtime series known as The Affair has captivated fans for more than one year now, with its unique storytelling. Each episode of The Affair shows the happenings from at least two different viewpoints of main characters on the show, and oftentimes those viewpoints can differ wildly, leaving the audience to wonder what’s exactly truth and what isn’t.

Warning: Spoilers ahead if you haven’t watched the series.

The Affair airs on Showtime every Sunday night at 10 p.m. ET/PT, and already, sites like the New York Times have spoiler alerts and episode recaps of the most recently aired Sunday night episode of The Affair. Each episode begins with a haunting opening song, sung by Fiona Apple, as the lyrics speak of a woman screaming into the canyon at the hour of her death, and how the echo she made lasted longer than her last breath. The song speaks of the echo making an avalanche that killed a man — and it’s a song that warns viewers of The Affair how actions can move forward into dangerous places if people aren’t careful in their lives and marriages.

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When The Affair first began, it featured Noah Solloway as one of the main characters. Noah was an attractive, married man who enjoyed a family of kids with his wife and a seemingly healthy sex life. On a trip to Montauk, Noah became enraptured by a troubled and emotionally broken waitress named Alison Bailey, and their affair set them on a path that had viewers salivating for the second season of the show to begin. The affair between the two characters, as finally consummated during Noah and Alison’s daytrip to Block Island, proved to be no one-night (or one-afternoon) stand.

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The tone of the show caused #TheAffair to trend on Twitter when new season sneak peek videos were revealed. The Affair also showed that it wouldn’t be easy for Noah to simply get a divorce and move on to the land of happily-ever-after with Alison. There’s a nagging death that looms, along with a trial, as well as Noah’s book. According to the New York Times, that book finally moves to the forefront as Alison gets a taste of the lusty offerings Noah has written about their affair, and the sexual intensity it contained.

“Alison’s perusal of ‘Descent’ — left out on Yvonne’s work desk — was the dramatic high point of the episode’s first chapter, which was devoted to her point of view. Reading the book enraged her, because it brought home to her how powerless she was. She’d just been fired as Yvonne’s assistant, with a strong hint that it was because of Yvonne’s jealousy, fed both by Noah’s book and by how close Yvonne’s husband, Robert, was getting to Alison. Now she saw herself exploited by Noah, depicted as an East End siren with an insatiable sex drive. As she told her ex after she fled back to Montauk, ‘People don’t see me, Cole.'”

In this latest episode, Alison’s internal life was explored.

“Most of the first half-hour of the episode was devoted to Alison’s feeling bad about herself and getting fired, after which she went to Brooklyn and, for some reason, went to Helen’s house to ask for Noah.”

The final half displayed Alison’s ex-husband, Cole, and his realizations that Alison was back in his life once more.

“The other half of the episode was devoted to Cole. Cole, meanwhile, spent the night flirting with Luisa at her bartending job, then went home only to find Alison asleep in the house, having run away from her problems with Noah.”

With wife and mistress finally meeting face-to-face, this is surely an affair to remember.

[Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images]