Warning: Do not read until you have watched Season 4 Episode 8.
Last night viewers of The Affair were witness to one of the show’s most unique episodes.
With a perspective of Cole (Joshua Jackson) comprising almost the entire episode, it packed a punch.
Joined by Noah (Dominic West) and Anton (Christopher Meyer) on a roadtrip in search of Alison (Ruth Wilson), it included he surprise death of the leading lady -all of which took place off camera (question: will we see it play out in an upcoming episode?).
Killing off Alison, who together with Noah has been the centre of the show’s universe across 4 seasons, was a very big move.
Co-creator and Showrunner Sarah Treem has answered questions by the Hollywood Reporter.
To be clear, Alison is dead? That is Alison’s body Noah saw in the morgue?
Was this always the plan for Alison from the very beginning?
ST: No. It was always a possibility for Alison. When I was coming up with Alison, I was thinking of this character we were going to meet right after her child died. As any parent would ask themselves in that terrible situation — even hypothetically as you do sometimes — would you be able to survive it? So that was always a question that I had for the Alison character as a kind of an existential question. How does a parent survive it? And would this character ultimately be able to? That is a question that she was asking herself when we first met her, before she met Noah. And in so many ways the impetus for the affair from Alison’s perspective was trying to outrun that pain. It was always a possibility for Alison somewhere in my mind that she wouldn’t ultimately survive.
At what point did you decide Alison would die this season? And why at this point in the story?
ST: Ruth wanted to leave the show. That was a request, so that was decided basically before we started writing. It wasn’t a discovery of any kind. That was very deliberate. And actually, we shot all of her work first. Her whole storyline was shot before we shot anything else.
There are two more episodes left in the fourth season. A final fifth season will air next year.