This episode of How To Get Away With Murder was marked by a plethora of flashbacks to 11 years prior, when Annalise (Viola Davis) and her husband Sam Keating (Tom Verica) first met Frank (Charlie Weber) as a prison inmate who was in his early twenties.

‘How To Get Away With Murder’ Season 3, Episode 5 Recap

Frank had been incarcerated since the age of 13 for murdering his father by running him over with a car. Sam, a psychologist, is shown to have been determined to get Frank out of jail, knowing he has some good in him. However, Annalise — who is pregnant with the child whose death Frank would later cause via the car accident — is very reluctant to help him, claiming that Frank’s repeated offenses even during his time in jail (starting fights, stealing, etc.) are clear indications that he has no intention of getting out. Nevertheless, Annalise eventually takes the case after Sam begs her several times, and becomes Frank’s lawyer, successfully releasing him from prison.

The scene then returns to the present, where Annalise’s house has been engulfed in a fire and she has been arrested. Laurel (Karla Souza) is discovered to be unconscious and pregnant by Wes’ (Alfred Enoch) girlfriend Meggy (Corbin Reid), who works at the hospital treating the victims of the fire. Meggy tells Bonnie (Liza Weil) and Oliver (Conrad Ricamora) that Laurel’s health status remains uncertain, and that the doctors will do their best to help her.

In another flashbacks from few weeks earlier, Bonnie is shown visiting her recently deceased father at a funeral home, and asks that he be cremated, feeling no apparent sadness after seeing him in his casket. She receives a phone call from Laurel, who is still desperately searching for Frank. Bonnie tells her she has no idea where he is, but we immediately see this is a lie, as Frank is shown waiting for her just outside the funeral home. Bonnie and Frank embrace and go to a nearby motel, where Bonnie thanks him for killing her father.

Bonnie attempts to convince Frank that he and Annalise need to make up and forgive each other, although Frank needs to be the first to apologize for nearly killing Annalise’s unborn child. Frank still appears unwilling to do this, and after he and Bonnie have sex one night, Bonnie awakens the next morning to realized he has disappeared yet again. She is left heartbroken.

Meanwhile, Annalise continues heading into a downward spiral of heavy drinking, despite admitting in last week’s episode that she is an alcoholic and pledging to better herself. After drinking herself into oblivion one night, drunkenly dancing to music all alone in her house, she calls Wes, who comes to see her after a dinner with Meggy and her parents. Wes is shown to evidently be very concerned, and helps Annalise get to bed after she throws up in her toilet, crying like a hot mess of a college student.

Annalise only attends one AA meeting and runs into the university’s president, Soraya Hargrove (Lauren Velez), and the two spar. Hargrove is still outraged by Annalise’s unrelenting attempts to threaten and sue Middleton University’s board if they don’t re-institute her license or find the person behind the ‘killer’ fliers, and after Annalise reveals just how big a lawsuit she can file, Hargrove concedes and begins to make calls to get Annalise her license back.

The Keating Five are struggling to get through their classes without Annalise’s help, and after Michaela (Aja Naomi King) comes up with a plot to steal the laptop of Simon (Behzad Dabu)– perennial suck-up/nerd who is desperate to become first chair in all the cases and become Annalise’s new favorite pupil over the Keating Five– in order to get his outline for an exam, Oliver hacks into his computer and finds…a PDF of the flier with Annalise’s face and the word killer above it!!

The five students and Oliver show Simon’s laptop to Annalise, who tells them not to worry, as nothing bad has happened to any of them, and says she is not going to do anything about this until Simon actually threatens to physically harm any of them. Nevertheless, it comes as no surprise that Annalise is simply lying when she says this. She barges into Simon’s apartment one day with his laptop in her hand and confronts him by displaying the page with the flier on it. Simon makes a failed, cringe-worthy attempt to say he has no idea what that flier is doing on his computer, saying “someone planted that.” Annalise sees right through him, and threatens to expel him from the university, sue him for defamation and even throw him in jail if need be, in classic Annalise bad-ass, merciless-lawyer style.

We fast forward again to the scene of the fire and Laurel being taken to the hospital. Oliver desperately tries to call Conor (Jack Falahee) from the hospital but fails and Michaela picks up instead. Oliver tells Michaela that Laurel has been found in the basement of the burning house, and that she is unconscious and pregnant. The camera then pans and zooms in on a TV at the hospital, which shows a news reporter discussing the fire with a picture of the house and the headline ‘Unidentified male found inside burning house.’

How to Get Away With Murder airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

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