Friday, September 19, 2014

What I’m Watching: The Leftovers (Season Finale)

The Leftovers: Season 1, Episode 10 “The Prodigal Son Returns” (B+)

After such a devastating and terrific season, it’s hard to expect that the finale would be able to resolve everything in a satisfying way. Fortunately, this is still a compelling hour that resolves a few important plotlines and lays the groundwork for what’s sure to be an equally involving second season. Patti’s death haunted the episode, particularly in the stark dream that Kevin had where he ended up I the mental institution with his father. The way this show conveys loss of time and the effect it has on each person experiencing it is simply mesmerizing. Matt is a fascinating character, and his willingness to come help Kevin out of his situation was great. Kevin meeting Wayne in his final moments bleeding out in a bathroom was a terrific intersection of storylines, and their private conversation was haunting. The Guilty Remnant promised something big and that’s exactly what they gave their town, with Nora seen bearing the brunt of the pain when she came downstairs to find lifelike recreations of her husband and children sitting at the kitchen table. This show has done a marvelous job of demonizing all of its characters and none of them to the point that there are no sides, particularly with Kevin, Matt, and the Guilty Remnant. Kevin springing into action to help save the GR when they were being attacked was noble, and fortunately he managed to save Jill, who had decided that she should join their ranks at exactly the wrong time. Tom’s return home, Laurie’s renewed look at life, and Nora’s departure turned baby discovery suggest that season two will be very different but I have no doubt that it’s going to be fantastic. I can’t wait to see more of what to me has been the most impressive new show of the year.

Season grade: A
Season MVP: Ann Dowd as Patti

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