Fellow Liberal Dead-heads, this is Ryne from The Moon is a Dead World. I’ve signed on to do a sort of recap/review of each week’s horror hits, so welcome to DEADtime TV. Again, Kevin Lovell helps out with reviews of The Following, and Shawn Savage will be picking up the remainder of From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series. And a big thanks to Doc Terror, who created a new banner for the series!
Resurrection: “Home” – Sunday, April 13 at 9 PM
Resurrection has used up most of its premise, I’m afraid. “Home” is another episode that introduces nothing new to the show, and instead utilizes whatever methods and ideas of previous episodes make sense to further the plot. Now we know that Caleb has gone back to the other side, and Rachael is pregnant, so the show deals with both of these elements in exactly the same style as other developments.
For the Caleb plot, everyone is seriously concerned that the other returned people might go back to wherever they came from as well. Jacob’s parents are afraid to let him out of their sight, and agent Bellamy also has a similar concern. So they call in an “expert” from the government to help them figure out what’s going on. He wants to run some tests and bring Jacob back to a lab – the exact same thing Bellamy tried to avoid in the first couple episodes of the season – and “Home” spends a lot of time contemplating ethical decisions and wondering if Jacob will just be a guinea pig.
On the other side of the equation, Rachael has become a big nuisance for just about everyone in town because she’s pregnant. Pastor Tom has been harboring her, but his wife finds out and tells the town gossip that she’s returned and pregnant. That sparks a controversy with everyone, leading to a bunch of guys kidnapping her and driving her out to the middle of nowhere.
But the ostracization of returned people has been done before, and we’ve certainly contemplated about the philosophical implications. It just doesn’t seem like Resurrection has anything left in the tank, and there’s nothing here that tells me things will begin to change. It also feels like the show is very unsure about what kind of story it wants to tell, and if it will ever let the viewer know why these people returned. Ultimately, “Home” is just another filler episode that has Resurrection stalling, trying to figure out where the insubstantial plot goes from here.
The Following: “The Reaping” – Monday, April 14 at 9 PM
The Following: Season Two, Episode Thirteen – ‘The Reaping’
This week’s new episode of ‘The Following’ marks the thirteenth episode in the second season of the series and is titled ‘The Reaping’. The episode begins at the same moment the previous episode ended, with Joe’s followers arriving back with Preston Tanner in tow as a hostage. While their mission was a success for the most part, they are unaware that Ryan followed them back to their camp. Unable to call for backup after dumping his phone to avoid being tracked, he takes down a cult member and dons his attire in order to blend in with the group and decipher a better understanding of just what Joe is up to here and what he may have planned.
The episode also focuses on the FBI who has located Lily’s current hideout and goes to try and take her down before she and her boys have the opportunity to escape. Naturally they are too late, but unsurprisingly, Lily is also going to find Joe having successfully tracked his location from their recent conversation (which Emma properly warned him about) and all sides begin making their way to one location for an inevitable confrontation of all sides.
While the intensity and full out insanity of this episode felt like season finale material to me when compared with most shows, believe it or not two episodes still remain in the sophomore season of ‘The Following’. I for one can say with absolute certainty at this point that I feel this season tops the first overall and continues to make me appreciate this show more and more each week. Those who have been following my coverage of this season on DEADtime throughout its run know that I was a huge fan of the first season which itself earned ‘The Following’ a slot as one of my favorite current running shows, therefore the fact I find this season such a significant improvement is quite a statement.
Don’t miss the final two new episodes of ‘The Following’s’ Second Season the next two Monday’ at 9/8c on Fox.
Bates Motel: “Presumed Innocent” – Monday, April 14 at 10 PM
“Presumed Innocent” can accurately describe many of the characters within Bates Motel, and the writers know this; there’s a feeling that Norma and Norman are treading on dangerous ground throughout the episode. Multiple deaths/murders generally don’t follow innocent people, but the Bates’ just seem to have bad luck falling in with multiple evildoers, and now that Norman has also killed Cody’s father, things aren’t going so well for the teenager.
This episode focuses mostly on Norman and Norma trying to get through the initial police investigation after Sheriff Romero takes Norman in for questioning. While Norman is pretty calm about the whole thing – almost in a state of shock as a female officer takes his fingernail clippings and DNA swabs – Norma is freaking out. She knows that Cody knows that Norman blacks out, and she’s worried that Cody might tell the police. From there, it’s only a matter of time before he’s brought to a psychiatrist and labeled psychotic.
So Bates Motel goes about this by getting characters together who don’t normally speak to one another. Norman talks with Sheriff Romero, and there’s a certain sense of nonchalance from Romero about the investigation that indicates he feels an allegiance to the Bates family. Norma and Cody find time to talk in the bathroom, where Norma pleads with her not to say anything. And Emma seeks out Dylan, letting him know Norman’s been arrested and accusing him of being a shitty person for not wanting to be there for him.
All of these elements work rather well to create a tense episode; things look okay for Norman, but the audience knows there are other elements that could land him in trouble, and these underlying ironies are what make “Presumed Innocent” so suspenseful. Dylan’s drug trade is a prominent part of the episode as well, with Zane letting Dylan know that he’s in on the secret between Dylan and his sister. That drug set-up has become clearer now that Norma is in cahoots with Nick Ford, and also Zane is wanting revenge against the same man, but it’s still somewhat on the outskirts of the main plot. How it works in will be an important element this season.
Bates Motel drops a bombshell in its final moments; one, that Norman is no longer as trusting of his mother as he once was when he finds out Norma’s been keeping secrets from him; and two, that Norman’s DNA matches semen found in Miss Watson. Romero in particular takes this pretty heavily, and that’s how “Presumed Innocent” chooses to end; the onus is on him to figure out what to do about Norman. Norman’s also got a choice to make as well – does he trust in Norma, or does he seek solace someplace else, now that Cody is gone? Interesting elements are afoot, and we’re nearly to the end of this season.
From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series: “Place of Dead Roads” – Tuesday, April 15 at 9 PM
I knew it would happen, all along. Finally, From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series has found its groove. Also, TITTIES! It makes absolutely zero sense to me, that they’ve toned down the language for the entire first part of the show, only to end up having four or five sets of naked, bouncing titties in last night’s episode. But, I will never argue with titties. Granted, I viewed the episode the next day VIA Canadian Netflix, and I have heard rumblings that the US airing of the episode included no titties at all. Episode five ended with the group finally arriving at The Titty Twister. Episode six begins the journey within. As you probably already expected, the characters played by Cheech and Danny Trejo in the film, have been recast, as has the role of Sex Machine. Most of the casting choices remain nonsensical, but the last several episodes have been so much better than those that preceded them, that it is wholly forgivable.
This episode plays out pretty much how one would expect, being the first exposure to the interior of The Titty Twister, if you’ve seen the movie, anyway. The only real shocker here, is that Jake Busey is playing Sex Machine, and if you happen to have caught it on Netflix, TITTIES ARE ABOUND! As much as I love titties, it does add a level of imbalance, seeing as the only really course curse words have been spoken in Spanish, unsubbed, no less. But, apparently it’s okay to have big boobies, nipples in full-view, flopping around for all to see. In every other aspect, a show like Justified on FX is ten times as “risque” as From Dusk Till Dawn. It makes no sense to get everybody pumped up for the show which appears to be the entire reason the network was launched, bombard us with nonstop uncensored movies between launch, and the premiere date, and then give us an unquestionably watered down final product. Some say it will be uncensored on Blu-ray, and I’m sure it will. However, unless they force some post-recorded F-Bombs into the final product, I don’t even see any places where it could have been censored. And, if they’re already putting the uncut episodes out VIA Netflix, I’ve watched three of the six episodes, and beyond the titties, I’ve noticed nothing else that could have been censored for broadcast.
So, as has been mentioned, The Geckos and the Fullers venture inside of the vampire-infested PG-13’ish titty bar, and all goes pretty much as expected. Beyond the stuff recreated from the movie, there’s tension between Seth and Carlos, and Seth feels the El Rey deal he has struck for he and his brother may be slipping away. Ranger Gonzalez has gone rogue, thrown his Ranger star down, and crossed the Mexican border illegally, on his hunt for vengeance, and to bring the Gecko Brothers to justice for what they did to Earl. Unfortunately for Ranger Gonzalez, he is apprehended, tortured, and exposed to the fact that what we are dealing with here, are fucking vampires. Again, as to his first couple of exposures to the supernatural, he remains unsurprised for whatever reason. It’s a minor complaint, but I’ve seen several people other than myself mentioning it, so I thought it was worth bringing up. Also featured in this episode, is Santanico Pandemonium, and Richie’s realization that it is the woman he has been seeing in his morbid visions that have been guiding him both on his travels, and in his acts of violence. Thankfully, this week’s episode continues the trend of stronger-than-average quality. It could definitely be better, especially if they abandoned the mentality that we need watered down dialog, but, it is a vast improvement over the second and third episodes, that’s for damn sure.
Hannibal: “Su-zakana” – Friday, April 18 at 10 PM
Hannibal heads back to its old MO with an episode that’s mostly centered around a crime of the week, with guest star Jeremy Davies as part of its murder investigation. Since Will’s release from the mental hospital, he’s gone back to Hannibal for guidance; it is, in his eyes, a way to get close to his enemy while also making Hannibal think that Will’s still under his discretion. As Will remarks in the opening scene with Jack Crawford, “I’m a good fisherman.”
While it’s clear that Will is not buying any of Hannibal’s mumbo-jumbo, their encounters with each other are still extremely interesting. In season one, Will was under the complete guidance of Hannibal, strung along by his words alone. This time, their sessions are a tug-of-war between the two, with Will outwitting Hannibal now and then. Hannibal’s facade has begun to crack, and that’s evident in the way that Fuller has chosen to depict Will – well-kempt instead of messy – and also the extremes Hannibal has been taking.
In “Su-zakana,” Crawford calls in both Will and Hannibal to investigate a murder where a dead horse has been stuffed with a dead woman. Both Hannibal and Will see the murder as a metaphor for rebirth, but Will is able to see past the murder into something more particular about the suspect Peter Bernardone (Davies, who has kept his Justified haircut): he is being led along by someone who is pulling the strings. It’s fitting that Will notices this nuance – in fact, he has been in much the same situation. “Su-zakana” explicitly tells the viewer this, however, and it loses some of the impact, but the sentiment still exists; Will is able to see the sad story of Peter beneath his actions of re-impregnating a horse and stuffing a bird in a woman’s chest cavity, and there’s a beauty within that moment. It also helps that Davies plays his role with a deftness that the character requires.
The episode also features a new character that Hannibal begins to with at his office. She isn’t named, but we get flashbacks of tear martinis and a lot of coercive manipulation from Hannibal; this is all sort of dropped on the viewer, but it’s clear Hannibal will be working with this character more towards the end of the season and perhaps into season 3. It is, however, the weakest part of the episode because of its odd placement within the series so far.
“Su-zakana” has a beautifully depressing plot, though, and it’s an episode that hearkens back to season one’s procedural territory while also changing the relationship between the two primary characters. As Will investigates and Hannibal, and vice versa, their reactions to each other get more and more entertaining. This season is going to end with a bang, but getting there is simply fascinating material.
Next week, Salem joins the ranks of coverage on DEADtime TV! Plus, we’re moving into the final episodes of most of the shows being covered right now! Tune in, and don’t miss any horror TV.