"Friend or Faux" did one thing extremely well. It allowed Audrey, for the first time, to express her feelings about — and expose her understanding of — her rather unique situation: the fact that she has memories that are not actually her's. The issue was elegantly handled in a episode that had very little else to recommend.
The story involved (one at a time) copies of a man, so it implied a memory split, but allowed the copy to retain the original's memories. This was smoothly used by the writers to segue into Audrey's own memory condition and craft a beautiful conversation between the copy and herself. The best line was Audrey's "My best friend Brenda used to say I think too hard, in the sixth grade. Except for that she wasn't really my best friend, cause I never met her. She was someone else's friend. Not mine." Watching her say it, actually watching her throughout the scene, shows how good Emily Rose is at portraying a down to earth, no-nonsense woman, who gives the impression she cannot fully embrace any emotion.
For continuity, it was nice to have the boyfriend mentioned this time around. It didn't require much and was enough for the viewers to feel they were watching a story that flows in the right direction. A story that involves characters that just don't pop up and disappear without warning.
One way to get a gripping plot is to leave the viewer at the end of each scene wondering what will happen next. However, the goal of creating that effect repeatedly should not put the focus on the individual scenes so much so that the resulting plot is affected, which is exactly what happened here. There were a lot a killings. Some were done right, like the suicide with the protruding stick from the pillar, but most were just there to have us wonder for a second before another copy pops up. Just like the copy impersonating the original and then Cornell Stameron suddenly revealing himself as a cold murderer seemed staged for effect.
I couldn't even buy into the copy's change of heart, even considering it was introduced by Audrey's interesting remark suggesting he wasn't responsible for Cornell's crimes. From his speech, the copy obviously knew killing the original was his own death sentence, but what we had seen from him until then didn't prepare us for such a 180-degree turn. Audrey's arguments rang true, but the copy had not shown any sign in their previous discussion allowing us to expect such a sacrifice, and that assuming the new copy had the memories of the previous one. Plus that silver coin appearing with each of them stuck out like a sore thumb.
About Duke and young Henry, it was nice to have him call the teenager's father. By going against his own experience when he discovered Henry had not been entirely truthful, by going against what he considered at first as the best decision of his life, the character showed some depth. Jumping to Henry's help also showed his ongoing transformation (not that we needed that to like him) from selfish bad boy to, well, bad boy with a heart. Now, there is a difference between being a bad boy and being a mean-tempered person, and here, resident bad boy pulled out several guns out of nowhere and started shooting at just about anything, including his own restaurant. Defending a runaway teenager because you had been one yourself is too easy an explanation for me. During a season and a half, we have seen a lot of Duke and this attitude was new and, to me, there seemed to be not enough justification for it.
Because this was the episode for half-hearted efforts, Nathan had to get his share. The burgeoning drama about his position as chief of police was tepid. It even had a soap feel to it, with the selection board member getting into Nathan's office and taking files away. One tiny pleasing consequence of this subplot is the fact that Evi might now be on her way out...
This was obviously not the best episode of the season, but it ended with something else from Audrey that fitted right into what the episode did best. Something she said that spoke to her as well as to the copy: "He needed to move pass his memories so that he would learn what he was capable of." Let's hope she will be as successful as he was.