'How To Get Away With Murder' Season 6 Episode 14: Laurel is back, here's how her return impacts the finale

In the pre-finale episode, as Annalise's trial opens, we are shocked to see Laurel come back to testify and it makes us question how her presence in the current scenario will affect everything

                            'How To Get Away With Murder' Season 6 Episode 14: Laurel is back, here's how her return impacts the finale
Karla Souza as Laurel Castillo (IMDb)

ABC's hit primetime legal drama has a disturbing way of bringing people back from the dead (not always literally) and shaking the audience to their core with the plot twist.

Just before the season finale, we were thrown one more such twist, making our jaw drop and question everything that has been happening. Welcome back Laurel Castillo (Karla Souza).

This is how it happens — Annalise Keating's (Viola Davis) murder trial is on and the state prosecutor invites a witness to the stand to testify against Annalise. As the doors open and Laurel walks in, everyone stares in shock, as do we!

How and where did she come from? Laurel then takes the stand and tells the court about everything that we had known so far secondhand; how she escaped from her father and brother to save her newborn child, how Tegan Price (Amirah Vann) helped her stay incognito, how Wes Gibbins (Alfred Enoch) killed Sam Keating (Tom Verica) on Annalise’s coaxing, and so on.

Later, after Annalise and Frank Delfino (Charlie Weber) talk it out with her, Laurel redacts her statement and tells the court otherwise and defends Annalise. What does all this mean for the upcoming events that will mark the final chapter of this huge controversy and determine everyone’s fate?

Let’s break down the situation to simplify it. Laurel Castillo has been out of the game for a long, long time now. Ever since Season 6 of ‘HTGAWM’ started, we had not seen her in flesh and blood but only heard about her when Frank was desperately looking for her.

The only time, she made a sudden appearance was through a video chat with her friends, Michaela Pratt (Aja Naomi King), Connor Walsh (Jack Falahee) and Oliver Hampton (Conrad Ricamora), when she told them that she has been hiding away from her father and the FBI, along with her and Wes' baby and how Tegan helped her escape.

Beyond that, there was no trace of Laurel in the entire season whatsoever. Then why did she come back now?

First of all, Laurel was one of the pivotal characters of the story. She has been largely responsible for most of the events that disrupted the lives of her professor and her friends. For instance, it was because of her Wes got killed by her father.

To save Laurel and her child, Annalise ended up opposing her father. Had it not been for Laurel, Jorge Castillo (Esai Manuel Morales, Jr.) would have been at Annalise’s throat.

Laurel led on Frank for many years with their initial romantic and sexual chemistry and later left him for Wes. Their relationship has kept Frank disturbed to date, making him even risk his life to find her.

So, in a way, Frank's animosity with Laurel's brother and family dates back to a long time ago and him killing Xavier comes from a lot of past anger.

If we revisit the early days of Annalise and her Keating 5, when this series of murders and cover-ups started, we will find Laurel there too! She was equally responsible for covering up Sam’s murder, just like everyone else.

She was also the one who caused the shooting at Kaplan & Gold by bringing a gun and making Michaela use it on Simon Drake (Behzad Dabu). So, while she might look innocent at a glance, she has a big role to play in all the upheavals of Annalise's life and of her friends.

She might have been a victim of abused parenting, mental health issues and a terrible family life. She has also been very selfish and an opportunist. And now that she is back from her hiding, at a very crucial moment, it is obvious that she is not here without a reason.

Although Annalise managed to revise her testimony, it is not impossible to assume that her presence has something more to do with the final chapter, especially when Wes comes back, or so we have known from the flashforwards.

'How To Get Away With Murder' Season 6 finale will air on Thursday, May 14, at 10 pm/9 c on ABC.

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