The pieces are slowly falling into place and the episode benefits from the Iceland trip.
- A more cohesive Megan storyline
- Shane and Cassie's dynamic
- The parallels between Cassie and Annie's relationship blip
- Cassie's alcoholism isn't something to be solved quickly
- There is still an element of trying to do too much
NOTE: This post contains spoilers for The Flight Attendant season 2 episode 3 "The Reykjavík Ice Sculpture Festival is Lovely This Time of Year.” Read our previous The Flight Attendant season 2 episode recaps right here.
Cassie (Kaley Cuoco) has found herself embroiled in serval conspiracies that stretch from the US to Europe, but she is also dealing with unchartered relationship waters on The Flight Attendant. Boyfriend Marco (Santiago Cabrera) floated the idea of moving in together and Cassie’s response is to jump on the next flight to Iceland to avoid this conversation. This isn't a destination picked at random, rather, a well-time message from former flight-attendant-on-the-run Megan (Rosie Perez) gives an out that makes no sense to anyone but Cassie.
Decoding Megan’s emoji message reveals the purpose of the puffin keychain that Cassie was sent in the mail and she determines that her ex-colleague has sent a cry for help from Reykjavík. One issue though, she has been grounded by Dot (Cheryl Hines) at the CIA and this off-book mission is not one she can discuss with her handler. Megan is not exactly the flavor of the month with the US government after her act of treason or the dangerous North Korean agents she is hiding from.
Cassie, using her Imperial Atlantic job perks, jumps on a flight to Iceland at a moment’s notice, but first, she has to persuade Blackmarket Carol (Alanna Ubach) to give up the prized spot on this particular plane. Cassie reveals that everyone knows Carol is making a quick buck off the airline selling Buddy Passes — hence, the Blackmarket part of her name — and she will spill her secret if she can’t have her seat. This plan works, but she didn’t count on Shane (Griffin Matthews) being on the flight. Shane is an actual CIA agent and not just a civilian asset and his presence is surely not a coincidence.
Instead of owning up to what she is doing, Cassie pretends the Reykjavík Ice Sculpture Festival prompted this spontaneous trip. Cassie might be good at convincing hotel employees to let her in a room, but Shane is not so easily fooled.
After a mini-game of cat and mouse, Shane reveals he is also hot on Megan’s trail and wants to close the case before a North Korean agent by the name of Hawk arrives. Shane shows Cassie a photo of a dead body to highlight the severity of this situation and the threat posed to her life if she gets in the way of the North Korean agents hunting Megan.
Of course, Cassie continues to deny everything, keeping up with the "trying to be a better person" reasoning of why she is on this trip. Cassie is beginning to spiral though and she almost succumbs to the contents of her hotel room minibar.
The weight of this trip and ignoring Marco are not the only pressing concerns. The blonde imposter uses her credit card to purchase items in a hardware store that look suspiciously like a body disposal kit and everything is becoming too much.
Cassie finds an AA meeting to quiet the dueling voices in her mind palace and it's here she gets a lead on Megan’s location. However, Cassie doesn’t get the welcome she was expecting as Megan straight up tells her, "I don’t need your help." So why would she send that emoji message?
The Megan storyline is stronger in this episode as it is connected to the main plot, while Shane’s presence is a boost to this narrative. Even though it is under strained circumstances, it is a dynamic that is still somewhat playful. Cassie should learn to trust Shane as she is out on her own and her choices aren’t exactly well thought through, which is a running theme.
"I’m a mess of a human being," is a line that sounds like Cassie but is said by Annie (Zosia Mamet). The Los Angeles trip is an accumulation of some big life changes for Cassie's bestie, which includes a job interview and meeting Max’s (Deniz Akdeniz) parents for the first time. Considering how defensively she responded when anyone mentioned the ring on her engagement finger, it isn’t surprising this introduction doesn’t go well either.
It gets off to a bad start when Annie removes the ring before entering his parents’ house and it doesn’t help that the dinner conversation swings between wedding plans and having kids. Annie fully loses it at this point and exclaims she never wants children. Suffice to say the couple is on shaky ground by the time they return back to Cassie's place.
Similar to how Cassie is using the Megan problem to distract from her commitment issues, Annie goes all-in on solving the View-Master clues. She finds out that one is a German license plate, which seems to link back to the Berlin bombing. Unfortunately for Annie and Max, they are unprepared for the danger of the unfolding situation.
After their huge blowout fight, they are knocked unconscious by their not-so friendly imposter neighbors, Esteban (Joseph Julian Soria) and Gabrielle (Callie Hernandez), who have the real owners tied up in a closet. Esteban and Gabrielle have both dyed their hair blonde, but it feels too obvious that Gabrielle is impersonating Cassie. Of course, there are many dangling threads and they are clearly part of one scheme.
Before Annie is caught unawares, she has rejected Cassie’s phone call. Earlier she talked her friend down from a "full-blown existential tailspin" but it's understandable why she wants a break from the drama.
Cassie is also dodging calls. Her handler Benjamin (Mo McRae) is on the "do not answer" list, but she gives her brother a few minutes of her time when he tells her about the podcast Jenny (Jessie Ennis) wants her to do — something she immediately dismisses.
All the pieces are moving into place and while there is still an overstuffed element, the third episode benefits from Shane’s bigger role in the story and the discovery of Megan’s hideout.
The Flight Attendant releases new episodes Thursdays on HBO Max.
Emma Fraser spends most of her time writing about TV, fashion, and costume design; Dana Scully is the reason she loves a pantsuit. Words can also be found at Vulture, Elle, Primetimer, Collider, Little White Lies, Observer, and Girls on Tops. Emma has a Master’s in Film and Television, started a (defunct) blog that mainly focused on Mad Men in 2010, and has been getting paid to write about TV since 2015. It goes back way further as she got her big start making observations in her diary about My So-Called Life’s Angela Chase (and her style) at 14.
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