The third episode of Aquarius sees things starting to boil-over for a few of the characters, in “Never Say Never to Always.”
The Times, They are Changing

In the premiere, I wasn’t sure if I liked Charmain as a character, but the more we learn about her, the more I like her. She’s had enough of basically being the precinct’s secretary and decides that she’d rather have sex with a creep, so they can find Charlie. In this case, it’s easy to see why choosing to perform sexual acts is actually a step up from being a maid in a uniform. 

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The best part is that Charmain proves to be a talented undercover officer. The story she told Charlie was inspired, as was the howling she threw in for emphasis. Mouthing off to Ed about his ball-hugging pants proved she has some balls of her own, too.

Charmain: “I’m serious about being a cop. As serious as you are.”

Hook-ups and Break-ups

Thanks to Charmain and Brian’s help, Sam gets the location of Charlie’s house but when he and Grace go there, they don’t find Emma. Instead, Grace discovers a lot of young girls under his power and none of them seem to want to leave. It’s then that Grace understands that getting Emma home isn’t going to be as simple as showing up. She realizes that she may have lost her little girl in more ways than one, which Sam sympathizes with as he too has lost his son in a way he never expected.

Understandably, the two end up falling into each others’ arms. But while Sam’s relationship with Grace blossoms, his partnership falls apart. Looking for his son, Sam finds out that his partner Ed, has been sleeping with his ex-wife and it’s not something he’s willing to overlook. He’s less interested in his ex and more interested in the man he works with lying to him.

Sam: “I don’t work with liars. It’s not a moral thing, it’s a safety issue.”

Beginning of the End

When Emma sees her father driving away from Charlie’s house, it’s hard to guess what she could be thinking. Charlie fabricates another lie and tells her that her father was only there to sell her off like some piece of furniture and being impressionable as she is, she buys the whole thing. It’s that moment that makes it easier to understand why she chooses to stay with Charlie, even after he slaps her around and pawns her off to another man in exchange for a job well done.

I’m still waiting for this odd, but not overly frightening Charlie, to become the Charles Manson I’ve always heard about. But we saw more echoes of that future in this episode. One thing’s for certain, he is a master manipulator. 

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A Musical Interlude

Music plays an interesting role in the episode. There are some beautifully sweet moments, such as the girls singing “The Shadow of Your Smile” together. When Charlie announces that he has gotten the money to record a song, the mood turns joyous as they all sing together. The song makes for a nice background as Grace and Sam re-discover their feelings for each other.

In the end though, music becomes a method of punishment as Charlie forces Grace and Ken to hear the haunting sound of their daughter singing joyfully. It’s almost torturous as they hear the happiness in her voice and yet they can’t be part of it.

Aquarius airs Thursday nights at 9pm on NBC.

(Image courtesy of NBC)

Michelle Carlbert

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV