Lara Solanki/ HBOMax

Spoilers ahead.

The Flight Attendant’s problematic heroine, Cassie Bowden (Kaley Cuoco) has been teetering on a “tightrope” of sobriety, as she called it. After sabotaging at the end of the last episode by sleeping with her CIA handler Benjamin, Cassie wakes up in episode 5 praising herself for fighting the urge to drink, even though her guilt for cheating on Marco is overwhelming.

Spotting a file with her name on it, Cassie snaps a few photos of the contents on her phone. It includes an image of her glove at the scene of the explosion, and a made-up psych-evaluation. Cassie runs out of the office, but not without running into Dot Karlson, Benjamin’s boss.

Lara Solanki/HBOMax

Giving up the idea that she can handle this on her own, Cassie finally calls her friend and CIA agent, Shane, and tells him everything about her dangerous doppelgänger. After spilling the beans about the clue-ridden view-master, he asks her to bring it to him so that he can check for any remaining trace evidence, while also reminding Cassie of their mandatory flight attendant training session with Imperial Atlantic.

Cassie runs home and asks Annie and Max for the view master when they tell her the psychotic bounty-hunter couple stole it when they were held hostage. Cassie runs out in a panic to attend her work meeting when she runs into Marco, who wants to know why she’s been avoiding him and ignoring his calls. After her vague excuses fail to get her out of the conversation, Cassie blurts out that she slept with someone else.

At her training, Cassie is clearly distraught, dodging call after call from her sponsor Brenda (who is supposed to be hosting/harboring “Hildegard” a.k.a. Megan, played by Rosie Perez). Placed in a team with Shane and “Black Market Carol,” Carol’s combative behavior is getting on Cassie’s last nerve.

Lara Solanki/HBO Max

Flipping out at Carol in the middle of the training, Cassie’s demeanor becomes so erratic, Shane asks if she’s drunk. She leaves the meeting and runs to her new friend Grace’s house (who doesn’t know Cassie has one year of sobriety under her belt) and who proceeds to make margaritas for them. After declining, Cassie receives an influx of texts from her well-meaning brother Davey (Grey’s Anatomy‘s T.R. Knight) reminding her to write the letter to their late father for AA, and to prepare for their upcoming trip. Feeling overwhelmed, Cassie cracks and indulges in a drink. Which turns into many.

Lara Solanki/HBOMax

Megan ditches the shelter of Brenda’s home to track down her lockbox containing blackmail against the Korean government. Running to the strip club where she left it, Megan comes to find that a woman who was squatting, and subsequently got kicked out, had stolen the box. After tracking her down, Megan finds the woman is not exactly willing to help. Drugging her with the remainder of her mushroom powder, Megan is finally reunited with her evidence against those hunting her down.

Meanwhile, Annie and Max decide to look for the bounty hunter couple to retrieve the view master, Annie’s engagement ring, and their laptop. Annie and Max discover the bounty hunters hacked into Max’s computer, downloading all the evidence of his illegal hacking help from when Annie worked at the law firm. Backtracking to locate the couple’s server from the bugs they left to listen in on Cassie’s apartment, Max and Annie find their house. Sneaking into their home, Max steals the items back.

Cassie, on the other hand, continues to spiral. Retreating back into her mind’s hall of mirrors, Cassie’s internal selves remind her that she’s been living a lie. Flashing back to a secret relapse she had six months ago in New York, it’s revealed that Cassie’s move to L.A. was an attempt to runaway from her problems. Bumping into fellow AA attendee Jenny at the liquor store, an intoxicated Cassie convinces her to leave without purchasing alcohol. Drunk driving to the beach to drunkenly lay and cry in the sand, Cassie is eventually found by her sponsor Brenda who brings her back to reality. Holding her accountable for her lies and relapse, Cassie finds comfort in her honesty.

thoughts?