The US has shown the last episode of S1 a few days ago, while the UK has just aired the pilot. While it’s not the hottest thing on TV, this series gets decent ratings. That is as it should be. To dislike it because Lost had its serious flaws is just moronic – Leftovers is its own thing. With only one true stinker (episode 4), things seem to look up now.
This is a complex and mostly worthwhile ensemble episode. It’s heavy on plot, but doesn’t fall apart. The editing is a maze, but the people in the cutting room knew what they were doing. It took me a second to understand the beginning: Someone is plastering the walls of Mapleton with Gladys posters featuring the slogan “Save Them.” Which seems to mean “kill them”. Disgusting. Are those the same guys who killed Gladys?
There is a fridge in the woods in which a certain Paul Glouski departed during a prank. Now Jill and Aimee and their gang use it as a dare: whoever can stay in there the longest wins. Jill breaks the record and almost faints, but is saved from suffocation by her grandfather, Kevin Garvey Sr, who must have escaped the psych ward. Turns out he checked in there after burning down the town library. Now he seems to be harder to find than the B.J.
Aah, Scott Glenn. Remember him as Jack Crawford in The Silence of the Lambs? Or as the priest in The Virgin Suicides? He makes even crap like Vertical Limit shine.
Tommy has to take care of a feverish, pregnant Christine. She mutters something about a bridge, which is either too ominous or not ominous enough, I don’t know which. That scene is greatly improved by Wayne’s phone call, but the great cult leader has no great plan, no revelation. Wayne just needs money. And he is still convinced that great things are afoot. Maybe they will involve a bridge.
Nora and Garvey are on their fourth date and are finally ready to fornicate, but find Megan and another GR in front of Nora’s house. Garvey threatens them verbally, but Nora has a better idea. I like the rapport they have with each other: “I don’t know how to talk to you yet.” Amidst all this crazyness of lost ones and wild dogs and cults, they approach each other carefully, timidly.
Back home, Garvey answers Jill’s questions about Grandpa and lets slip that she has seen him, and now his son has to catch him. First port of call is the Mayor, who has dumped the crazy old geezer. Then we see Garvey segue into a dream, and again, Dean wants Garvey to kill a dog – this time, the animal is trapped in a mailbox, and there is a dead Laurie in the back of Dean’s truck. Garvey just cannot shoot the dog this time. He wakes with a bite wound on his hand and a ferocious dog in the backyard. Aimee seems to know what has happened during the night even if Garvey doesn’t. Spooky stuff.
Garvey has to investigate the library his dad broke into – again. He beat up a deputy, used the library computer and wanted to borrow 200 dollars to get something for his son. Pop quiz: who do you think is more sane at this point – Garvey Sr or Garvey Jr?
Tommy delivers the money to a designated mailbox, but waits to see who will pick it up. Meanwhile, Grandpa turns up at the Garveys’, but only Jill is home. Ske asks why he knew that she was trapped in a fridge in the woods. He says he didn’t know. He wants to borrow 200 dollars and asks for tranquilizers for the dog, but Garvey, alerted by Jill, comes home. The scene where he handcuffs himself with that old routine is strangely touching because it’s right and wrong at the same time.
In the police car, the Garveys run into a silent GR protest against the killing of Gladys, and Grandpa gets out of the car and escapes. Garvey knocks down some protesters during his pursuit, Patti among them, and is stared down by her and Meg and, of course, Laurie.
Meanwhile, Tommy sees a stranger take the 3’000 dollars and follows him, and he discovers another very young, very pregnant woman of Asian background called Liane and her protector. How many unique special pregnant girls does an abusive cult leader need? What is his plan?
Back at the Garveys’, Aimee wants to talk about what Kevin remembers about the night they got the dog. He refuses to discuss this and goes to the backyard to feed the dog only to find out that someone has dug up the jar with the money. Remember that jar? Father Jamison dug it up, and now we get to see that it is empty except for a leaflet about a corrupt judge and a note from Grandpa that Jamison deserves that money. Which prompts Garvey to see the holy man.
There are people at Matt’s, printing posters of Gladys. So it’s them, and their plea to save the GR has a spiritual background, not a cynical one. Matt isn’t there, but Garvey finds out that he is out there somewhere with Garvey Sr.
Liane’s minder tries to bond with Tommy over a coupla lines of coke and reminiscing about the night of the raid, when Liane charges into the room with a gun, trying to make Tommy lead her to Christine, then she breaks down and tells Tommy that Wayne is some kind of bridge.
Then there is a meeting in a diner of father and son. Senior brings him a National Gegraphic mag from May 1972 which is supposed to be crucial, some kind of message. This, Dad says, is Kevin’s invitation, his purpose, his mission. Junior dismisses it all as humbug because of his daddy issues. Well – if your dad hears voices, how would you react? And thus ends Grandpa’s day out.
A disillusioned Garvey goes and does what any man would do in order to anchor his life in the here and now: he goes and has wonderful sex with Nora. That doesn’t seem to faze Laurie too much, and for once, chief Garvey is cheerful in the morning – until he sees the National Geographic on his kitchen counter.
Meanwhile and somewhere else, Tommy gets another phone call from Wayne the Bridge, but decides to smash the phone. That is very sane and very dangerous. Back at their hideout, Christine has given birth on her own. It’s a girl. But of course.