Part One: Alison
A very pregnant Alison is navigating through a crowded party, thrown by Harry, while the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade takes place outside the building's windows. Don't get me started on that parade.
The buzz in the room for Noah's book seems to be very positive, and Alison sidles up next to him while he meets and greets. When asked what she thinks of his book, Noah answers for Alison, before she jumps in with "he has enough critics."
I don't think he has enough, quite frankly.
While Noah is pulled away to continue glad-handing, Alison unwittingly makes conversation with a gossip columnist. We learn that on the book's jacket, it says that Noah lives in Brooklyn with his wife and four children.
"No, that's a mistake... It's being corrected in the next printing," Alison says.
A publicist for Noah's publisher pulls Alison away from the woman, but not before she's spilled lots of information. "Please don't talk with anyone else before clearing it with me first," the publicist scolds Alison. Alison pulls off her high heels and sits in the kitchen with the staff working the party.
Alison tries to pull Noah away from the party, but the publicist, Eden, has his ear and his arm. Noah is set to go on a book tour, but complications have arisen and Noah has to fly out that evening. "I hate her," Alison tells Noah, unhappy that he's now flying out on Thanksgiving night.
She tries to get him to leave so that they can prepare for guests that they're hosting for the holiday, but Noah insists on staying at the party to continue pressing the flesh. He promises to join her shortly, so she heads back to their new apartment alone.
When she arrives, her mother is waiting for her in the lobby. They head up to the swanky living quarters, and Alison gives her mother a tour. We see the living room, and the bedrooms for the kids, one for the boys, one for the girls. Alison says that she knows Whitney will never stay there, "...but Noah doesn't," so they've prepared a space for her anyway.
Her mom asks to see the nursery, and Alison shows her to Noah's office. He's just using it until the baby gets there, she assures her mom. The symbolism here is that Noah wasn't prepared for the baby and isn't ready to accept that he'll be a father again, of course.
"Stop talking. Start cooking," Alison tells Athena, and they begin preparing for the Thanksgiving meal. Noah is supposed to be bringing the turkey home.
I have my doubts about that.
Athena can't help but be nosy, and starts asking Alison how much the apartment costs, how much Noah made from his book and whether or not Alison is contributing anything to all of this. Alison tells her mom that she is, and that she's selling her house.
"I'm done living there. I'm living here now," she says.
"That house is your inheritance. It is the only thing you have in the world of any value," Athena counters.
"No, it's not. I have him" Alison says.
Athena tells Alison that the only reason she has the house at all is because Athena made her mother bypass her in her will. She tells her that she knew it was the only thing of worth that she'd ever be able to give Alison, so she did.
"Let Noah worry about how to pay for this. He's the one who wanted this, not you," she says.
She tells her to keep the house, so that if it doesn't work out with Noah, she'll have a place to go with her child. Alison insists that the house is in escrow, and that the decision has already been made.
Later, we see Alison's friend, Jane, arrive for dinner. They haven't seen each other in a year, so they sit down and start catching up. Alison tells her that Noah's best friend is the one that set them up in the apartment.
Max has been invited for dinner as well, and it seems that Alison has designs on setting him up with Jane. She warns her about Max, though.
"He's kind of obnoxious," she says.
"If he's not racist or Republican, I'll be okay," Jane says.
Max doesn't appear to be either, as we see that he and Jane hit it off quite well. The two appear to be quite drunk and quite smitten with each other while Alison and Athena fret over Noah, who still hasn't arrived with the stupid turkey.
Athena pulls Alison and Jane into another room and pulls out a stethoscope. Athena and Jane take turns listening to the Alison's stomach, and hear the baby's heartbeat. Alison struggles to hear when it's her turn, but she finally relaxes and hears her child's heart beating. "Remember, there are two of you now," Athena tells her.
Noah finally enters, and he has Eden with him, much to Alison's chagrin. "Where's the turkey?" Alison asks. "Oh, f---," Noah says.
I knew it, I knew it, I f----ng knew it.
"They close at 6. You had plenty of time," Alison says. It's later than that, now. "This is totally my fault," Eden says.
She's a Jezebel, in the words of the great Jim Ross.
Athena asks Noah to listen to his baby's heartbeat. He agrees, and crouches down in front of Alison. "Gets me every time," he casually says.
As the motley crew sits down to dinner, Noah calls Helen to talk to his kids, and learns that Whitney lied to both of them and her Thanksgiving whereabouts are unknown. As he returns to the table, Max and Athena toast Noah, while Eden, with her giant phone constantly in her hand, tells Noah that they need to leave by 9 to make their flight.
Eden also tells the table that Alison's conversation with the gossip columnist has become a news story. An article about Noah stepping out with his pregnant fiance while he's still married has gone live, and is generating a lot of Internet buzz. Alison apologizes, but Eden tells her that this is a good thing.
Eden tells Noah that he needs to publicly align himself with the story of his book, and how the story of how he and Alison met, and Alison's abusive husband, mirrors his own life. "Noah, you're not really considering this, are you?" Alison asks.
Predictably, this spineless dude is.
"You said the book is fiction," Alison says, pressing the issue. Alison reveals that in fact, she did read the entire book, and isn't happy about it. She tells Noah that he's insane if he wants to present the book's narrative as a mirror of his own life, and even more so for wanting to use it as a promotional tool. "Nothing is sacred to you," she says, and berates him for presenting it as though she threw herself at him. "And then you killed me. You killed me at the end of your book. Did that happen, Noah?"
Alison leaves the table, and sits in Noah's office, thinking. He tries to talk to her, but she wants none of it. "Go away," she says. "Harry made me write that ending," he says, attempting to explain his problems away. He offers to cancel the book tour, and not to discuss his life in interviews, if that's what Alison wants.
"Do you even want this baby?" she asks. "Really? You want to be a family, the three of us? You don't want to run me over with a car so you can make this all go away?" she continues. "This is real. This is my real life," he insists.
Just then, the doorbell rings.
Alison is being deposed by Jon in his office. He asks her about when she left the wedding on the night in question, and whether or not she was on good terms with Scotty at the time. She says that she was, even though that there was strife between he and Cole at the time.
When asked, Jon tells her that as long as what she told him matches what she told the police, that will be the extent of her testimony in the trial, unless he needs her as a character witness for Noah.
Part Two: Cole
Cole is in bed with Luisa, and in the throes of passion, she appears to whisper "I love you." This throws Cole off, and he steps outside to collect his thoughts.
Later, Luisa brings him coffee and he wishes her a happy Thanksgiving. Luisa invites him to come to Queens with her to spend the day with her family. Cole declines and says that he's going to spend the holiday with is mom and his family. Luisa expresses surprise that he's back in touch with his mother. "Well, you don't know everything about me, do you?" he says.
Luisa doesn't want to let anything fester, and asks if he wants to talk about what happened in bed. "Do you want muffins?" Cole replies, then runs off to the store to avoid the discussion.
At the store, Cole runs into Scotty. Scotty asks about Alison selling the house, and tells him that he still wants to open a nightclub with him. He tells him to put aside his differences with is mother, and to surprise her by showing up for dinner.
Cole declines, and tells Scotty that he's going to Queens with Luisa. Scotty tells Cole not to let Luisa use him to get a green card, because that's what she tried to do to him.
While the brothers chat, Oscar rolls up and tells them that they really need to read Noah's book, because all three of them are all over it. "Drugs, the moonshine, even put in the stuff about the feud between our families," he offers. Oscar leaves, but not before he threatens Scotty for trying to buy the Lobster Roll out from under him.
Cole gets back to his place, and looks to pick a fight with Luisa. She asks him again to come to Queens with her, and tells him that she doesn't believe that he's going to have dinner with his family. He accuses her of stealing a money clip that he left out on the table, which she denies, before telling him off, and leaving.
Cole goes into town and picks up a copy of Noah's book. He returns home and sits down with beer and a pen, to highlight passages of interest. He stops, grabs some moonshine, and decides to head to dinner with his family, after all.
After some awkward small talk with one of his brothers and his sister-in-law, the family passes around the moonshine and offer up toasts for things that they're thankful for. "To Noah Solloway, for writing his book about Alison, and me, and all of you," Cole says, sarcastically.
Against his family's protests, Cole pulls out the book and starts reading passages from it. "...they were delusional. There was no nobility in their blood. These common boys were, and always would be, like their murderous grandfather, bootleggers," he reads.
"I have tried to understand this man, and even tried to forgive him lately, but he is a parasite, he's a leech. He knows exactly what this family has been through, and he took our story and twisted it into something grotesque," he says of Noah.
Scotty and their mother exchange glances, and Cole asks them to explain themselves. And so, their mom lays out that everything that Noah wrote was true. The boys' grandfather killed one of the Hodges' children, which set off their family feud. She explains that their father never told them any of this to protect them.
"This family is cursed," she says. "First, your sweet Gabriel, then Scotty's baby with the Solloway girl, now it's Hal and Mary Kate. Don't you see what's happening?" she says to Cole. She goes on, telling him that he's no better than his father was. "The last time I saw a man as bad off as you, he hung himself," she says.
Cole takes that as his exit cue, and leaves. Scotty goes after him, and begs him to stay. He tells him that he needs to rejoin the family, so that they can use his money to invest in something that will help them move forward. "You are the only one that has the ability to change anything. What the f--- are you waiting for?" he says.
While the brothers talk, Whitney pulls up in a cab. She demands to talk to Scotty, but he turns tail and runs off, leaving Whitney pounding on Cole's chest, while she screams for Scotty to talk to her. With Scotty gone, Cole offers to give Whitney a ride back to the city.
"Do you remember that time you tried to kill me?" Whitney asks, on the way. They argue about when Cole pointed a gun at Noah, with Whitney insisting that he pointed it at her, too. Cole apologizes, then tells Whitney that she needs to leave Scotty alone. "He got me pregnant. I really care about him," she says. Cole tells her that the Scotty doesn't feel the same way, and that she needs to move on.
Whitney asks Cole about the book, and tells him that he's in it, but she isn't. Cole theorizes that maybe that was Noah's way of trying to protect her. "Or maybe I'm not as important to him as I thought I was," she counters.
Cole takes Whitney to her dad's place. He opens the door, and is shocked to see the two of them there together. Cole tells him that she came after Scotty. "She thinks she's in love," he says.
Noah invites Cole in for a drink, but he declines, and heads to Luisa's family's place. "I may not be good for much, but I am good for my word," he says, as he apologizes to her for hurting her, and promises not to do it again. "Okay," she says.
Cole tells her that he loves her, and she invites him in to meet her family.
Jon watches security footage of Scotty and Alison, apparently having an argument at Lockhart's Lobster Roll. Jon says that he'd give anything to know what they were saying. Oscar, sitting a few feet away, says that he heard the argument and can tell him all about it. "That's going to cost you extra," Oscar says. Jon refuses to give in, and threatens to have Oscar subpoenaed, so Oscar folds.
"That's our baby," he says. "That's our baby. Heard it as plain as day."
"That's our baby."
WHAT? This show is bonkers.