Tuesday, February 7, 2017

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

The OA: Season 1, Episode 8 “Invisible Self” (C+)

I’m not pleased. I stuck with this show for its entire run because I thought it was headed somewhere, and ending on a purposely ambiguous note that barely addresses anything that happened is far from satisfying. Starting with the sheriff arresting Hap but then returning to the basement to grab Prairie and Homer to cure his wife’s ALS was not an affirming or hopeful twist. Watching the two of them do their movements and then get her talking to them about the fifth movement was dramatic and intense, and then the hapless sheriff rushed in to hug his wife, leaving his gun behind for Hap to grab and then shoot and kill them both. Hap taking Prairie away and dumping her on the side of the road as punishment for thinking that she was important doesn’t track with how he had favored her earlier, and the worst part of it all is that the story ended there. Having her story interrupted by the arrival of a bunch of concerned parents was deeply disappointing, especially since we didn’t go back to any of it after that. Instead, it was made to seem that she made it all up, which still doesn’t explain any of what happened to her during all those years, and then the show ended with a disturbing school shooting which was prevented by everyone doing the movements. The concept is hokey enough, and I think that crossed a line since it represented something so unsettling so fantastically. To me, it’s just irritating because there were no answers, and there are still so many questions that don’t feel addressed by the use of the movements to stop a school shooting. I don’t usually ask for my money back after a movie, but this feels like the kind of situation where I would feel compelled to do so. I feel like I’ve wasted the past eight weeks, and that my time could have much better spent than on this intriguing but ultimately unfulfilling exercise.

Season grade: B-
Season MVP: Jason Isaacs as Hap

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