TV Review: 'Absentia' Season 2 Puts Stana Katic Thriller In Exciting New Territory

Absentia Angel Bonanni Tommy Gibbs Derek Crown Christopher Colquhoun Cal Isaac Matthew Le Nevez Jack Byrne Neil Jackson Emily Byrne Stana Katic Nick Durand Patrick Heusinger Julianne Gunnarsen Natasha Little Flynn Durand Patrick McAuley Alice Durand Cara Theobold
The second season of “Absentia” gets off to an unexpected start. Picking up in the haze of Season 1’s aftermath, Emily (Stana Katic) and company find themselves on an emotionally fraught rollercoaster. It is not the follow-up that this viewer expected. That said, Season 2 is what “Absentia” needs as a series.

As previously mentioned, “Absentia” comes out blazing with an entirely different feel. In many ways, Season 2 serves as a reboot of the entire Amazon series. One that does not lose its origin story and start from scratch. What is so impressive is that you can begin to palpably feel the momentum building around Episode 4. From there, it is all uphill.

“Absentia” builds off the emotional investment it cultivated in its freshman season. Bringing it to bear for a captivating sophomore effort that delivers unforeseen developments. Emily’s journey continues to be one of the most enthralling of television’s reigning heroines. Yes, heroine.

Related: TV Review: “Absentia” Season 3 Premiere Packs a Punch

While “Absentia” continues to allude to her flaws, it is tough to see Emily as anything other than a likable survivor. She is a compelling character that Stana Katic charges with a strong brand of believability. In Katic's hands, Emily is one of TV’s most convincingly formidable action heroes.

The hook of “Absentia” rests in the appeal that no matter the storm that Emily endures, you feel drawn to weather it with her. As the season continues, Emily begins to regroup and find her power. Something that as Season 2 gets underway, you start to wonder if she can.

“Absentia” takes on a very determined dynamic throughout its second season. There is a sense of it genuinely picking up steam, and it ends, leaving you wanting more. It has a verve of decisiveness that gives a proper nod to the groundwork laid by its founding season. The good news does not end there.

The supporting cast's relevance is maintained, and the new cast members are nicely woven into the series' narrative. One of those characters provides an especially intriguing counterpart to Emily. Meanwhile, Angel Bonnani's Tommy takes on deeper grooves as a character. All of which lead to him contributing in a pivotal way.

What originally got met with personal controversy, ends up leading to one of Season 2's most thrilling plots. Emily’s ex-husband’s procedural storyline ultimately pays off. It takes on necessary life in the first half of the season and branches out accordingly. That story also opens the door to something quite startling.

Emily's one-time grating ex, Nick (Patrick Heusinger), actually starts to recover as a character thanks to his solo storyline and its aftermath. Most importantly, his behavior towards Emily improves as his arrogance fades. While yours truly is far from a fan, Season 2 provides a road to recovery. A path this viewer never thought he could walk.

Miracles happen, and that is part of what makes the television medium so powerful. “Absentia” continues to prove that underestimating it is a mistake. With its second season, it announces its presence with an even more robust roar. This is the show that Stana Katic deserves. Hopefully, she will get to keep making it for a long time to come.

Rating: 8/10

Season 1 and 2 of “Absentia” are currently available to stream on Amazon Prime Video. Season 3 is reportedly on its way to being renewed, per Deadline. So, the hope that more secrets will be uncovered following that shocking ending is still alive.

[Featured Image by Amazon]