Virgin River season 2, episode 2 recap – what happened in “Taken by Surprise”?

By Daniel Hart
Published: November 27, 2020 (Last updated: December 5, 2023)
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Netflix series Virgin River season 2, episode 2 - Taken by Surprise


“Taken by Surprise” is proving that this is a worthy continuation as the episode increases the drama three-fold and hones in on some dangerous situations for our characters.

This recap of Netflix’s Virgin River season 2, episode 2, “Taken by Surprise” contains significant spoilers.

We recapped every episode — check out the archive. 

The opening 

“Taken by Surprise” opens up with a desperate man asking Mel for help in her home; he’s asking for oxy, and he seems hurt. As Mel tries to back off, he approaches her with a knife. Luckily, Jack was outside lurking and charges to her rescue, smashing through the front door like the Hulk. At this point, the man has Mel held at knifepoint, but Jack is an ex-veteran, so of course, he disarms the man who quickly escapes. Afterward, Mel and Jack realize they are in each other’s presence, but Jack has to help her as she’s a little injured. The more Jack helps her, the more the sexual tension between them grows. 

Paige is not in a good place 

Paige looks beaten up; Wes asks her why she hasn’t packed yet. There’s fear in her voice as he gets closer. This man is clearly a psychopath; he strokes her hair and tries to kiss her. Paige is in a perilous situation in “Taken by Surprise”, which changes the course of her story, forever. 

Jack and Charmaine reluctantly agree to Hope’s place 

The next day, Jack asks Doc if the Sheriff has any leads on Mel’s attacker. Charmaine apologizes to Mel for her attitude the day before. Mel then brings up finding a space in Hope’s house. Jack and Charmaine are not on board at first, but Doc helps to persuade them, so they agree to the accommodation. When Mel confirms that Charmaine has agreed with Jack’s consent, she tells her to not communicate with Jack and that she will handle the communication. 

But of course, Hope does not like her tethered friendship with Jack and apologizes to him. Jack tells her he forgives but he doesn’t want her involved in his life. Mel believes that Jack is harsh, but he reminds her that harsh is “walking out on someone without explanation”. Oh, snap, Jack — he’s really playing the game here with Mel. 

Wes reminds Paige that he’s a cop and she’s a fugitive 

Paige tells Wes that they are not leaving. Wes reminds her that he’s a cop and she is a fugitive and that a judge is not going to believe her. He tells her she isn’t in the position to call the shots before grabbing her by the neck. Paige pushes Wes off her, and he falls down the stairs, which kills him. Panicked, Paige rings Preacher.

Preacher wanted to be there for her — be careful what you wish for, eh.

Muriel makes her move on Doc 

Muriel finds Doc at the bar after Hope gives her the go-ahead to date him — the pair make small talk, and it leads to Muriel asking Doc if he’d join her for a meal at her house. She’s very flirtatious, and Doc has no choice but to agree, considering Hope told him to. Later on, Hope is jealous already but tells him to proceed. 

Mel checks up on Charmaine 

Mel checks up on Charmaine and gives her some supplies. Jack enters the room, and there is an awkward tension between them. Charmaine is curious about why there’s awkwardness between them; she presses Jack about it as he seems upset. But what Charmaine doesn’t understand, is that Jack is waiting for Mel to talk to him about her silent departure. 

A panicked Paige asks Preacher for serious help 

Paige shows Preacher her ex-husband Wes, who is dead — now that’s a nice way to introduce someone. She is worried that the police will not believe her that it was an accident; she asks Preacher to take her son Christopher. Preacher believes they can convince the Sheriff, but Paige reminds him that there is a warrant for her arrest and she doesn’t have any family that can take her son. She begs Preacher to help, but he seems unsure. But then he escalates the situation even more and goes into savior mode, referencing the code he lives by as an ex-marine; he tells her to leave Virgin River and that he will deal with the body; Preacher wants her to disappear completely so she can have a good life. Preacher is demonstrating his kindness and bravery here; he can see that Paige is someone that needs protecting. 

Let it all out in the open 

And finally, Jack gets exactly what he wants in “Taken by Surprise”.

Mel confronts Jack; she wants him to stop being angry with her so they can “clear the air”. The pair drink a shot of alcohol each. Mel apologizes for leaving and returning without telling him. Jack accepts her apology but will not be friends with her until she’s honest with herself; he believes she should give herself a chance and open herself up to someone. Mel brings up how she’s buried a spouse and he wouldn’t understand, which is not the best thing to say to an ex-veteran as he reminds her that he has buried people he loves. Jack tells Mel she has a chance to move on. However, Mel expresses that she is scared of loving someone she’s going to lose again. 

The ending 

As reach the end of the dramatic “Taken by Surprise”, Jack brings up a “leap of faith”, but Mel doesn’t feel strong enough, believing that he belongs with someone else before walking out. When she walks out and enters her car, the engine will not start, and she screams at the wheel and smashes it with her fists. During this moment, I believe it struck her that regardless of her intentions not to fall for Jack, she knows it is already too late — her screams are an outlet for her frustrations; she didn’t want to let anyone else in, but Jack has caught her off guard. Jack comes outside and opens her car door; he offers her a hand, and predictably, it starts raining, and they hug. 

When Jack takes Mel to her house front door, she grabs his hand as he is about to walk off and gives him “the look”. They kiss, and they sleep together for the first time, and steamy scenes follow.

“Taken by Surprise” is proving that this is a worthy continuation as Virgin River season 2, episode 2 increases the drama three-fold and hones in on some dangerous situations for our characters.

The Virgin River Diaries
  • Jack rings narcotics cop Mike about the man who attacked Mel; he wants him to investigate to see if it’s going to get worse. 
  • Paige doesn’t believe it will be the same between her and Jack. Doc reminds her that time heals wounds.
  • Doc heads to Muriel’s home for their date. Muriel looks super horny while Doc seems very uncomfortable. They agree to play backgammon, drink wine, and eat. 

Thanks for reading our recap of Virgin River season 2, episode 2.

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