Abby is Dead and the Donovans Are Falling Apart In Season 5 of ‘Ray Donovan’

While all was well in the Donovan household at the close of season four of Showtime’s “Ray Donovan,” the premiere of season five reveals just how much has changed. A time jump between seasons actually leaves viewers with tough questions of what really happened in what are now considered the most mysterious moments of the series to date, as well as what’s to come in future episodes.

The Donovan clan in season five is certainly not the same family fans last saw in season four. It’s almost difficult to keep up with all of the sudden changes. But considering the amount of dramatic flashbacks in the season premiere, it’s safe to say viewers will get answers to most of their questions this season. It’s just a matter of when. Still, there’s a consensus that a shakeup like this is just what the series needed as it enters its fifth season.

The biggest shock surrounds the title of the season five premiere episode, “Abby.” It doesn’t take long for the show to reveal Abby Donovan’s (Paula Malcomson) unfortunate death between seasons. The question that immediately follows is how? A flashback during the premiere episode teases that it could have been a car accident with Ray (Liev Schreiber) but Abby ends up walking away from that incident without a scratch.

It’s also hinted that Abby passed away from cancer. This is a more realistic possibility considering in previous seasons she refused to get treatment. Still, with the vast chunk of missing time, it’s certainly a possibility that she changed her mind. While Connor (Devon Bagby) is away at a military school called VMA pursuing a wrestling career on the varsity team, Bridget (Kerris Dorsey) gets close to a guy named Smitty in New York. The foundation of their deep connection will most likely be unveiled later this season. Aside from the two getting high together after meeting in a cancer ward, Bridget  calls Ray and informs him that she “met the kid,” talking about Smitty. It also appears that Bridget wants answers when it comes to what happened to Abby. In another flashback, she is seen crying outside of Ray’s bedroom which leads to an ugly interaction between the two. This suggests that something much uglier than cancer could have been the cause of Abby’s death.

Even though her death is a mystery, Ray does everything he can to keep her legacy alive this season. He opens a new bar (something he and Abby wanted to do together) and names it after her. Now, he is determined to keep it going despite losing $20,000 a month. As he recovers and copes with Abby’s passing, he tries to stay busy as he signs on to help a troubled Hollywood star, Samantha Winslow (Susan Sarandon). This could be just one of many distractions to get him through the tragedy.

But Abby’s fate isn’t the only thing looming over the heads of viewers in the fifth season. The family that left on positive terms now appears to be upside down and losing hold of the once close bond. A major fight apparently broke out during the time jump, and while the details of that are also not clear, whatever happened might have changed the family for good and could be too major for them to bounce back from this time. Meanwhile, Terry (Eddie Marsan) is engaged to Maureen (Tara Buck) but viewers shouldn’t be on the lookout for a dream wedding. But he is making a transition as it was revealed he received a pacemaker in his brain to monitor his struggle with Parkinson’s during the time lapse. As for Daryll (Pooch Hall), he’s determined to bring in big name clients for Ray.

Ray Donovan” season 5 premieres on Showtime Aug. 6 and airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET/PT.