The Mist’s eighth episode is mainly Christmas together with your aged kin, in that there’s a lot to unpack right here and completely none of it’s good. “The Legislation of Nature” is all fitness center socks and sweaters, people. Showrunner Christian Torpe (who co-wrote the episode) didn’t even embody the reward receipt, so we will’t even commerce this in for one thing we really need (like a model new Mercedes). Perhaps much more so than the characters themselves we’re caught inside this mist, going nowhere anytime quickly, and assist is seemingly not on the way in which.
The place to start? With Mom Nature ordering Nathalie Raven to homicide a church full of individuals, Bryan Hunt and Mia Lambert’s spontaneous backseat tryst, or Gus Bradley murdering Shelley DeWitt to maintain his hidden snack pantry protected? No, proper upfront, we have to focus on the revelation that Adrien not solely raped Alex at that celebration, however did so as a result of he’s batshit bananas out of his thoughts. Not in a refined approach—or, you realize, a approach that’s been hinted in any form or type through the earlier seven episodes—however cartoonishly loopy; he’s a horror, dangerously obsessive about Alex (“I wasn’t going to let her select somebody like Jay”), apparently such a monster in his private life that his father was afraid of him and his mom wanted high-strength sedatives (the identical present in Alex’s physique) simply to dwell below the identical roof.
It’s the worst type of twist as a result of it’s not a twist, it’s only a lie. You confirmed us one factor after which, in a single scene of exposition, revealed it was one thing completely different the entire time. When you took a left flip so jarringly sudden in a automotive you’d flip the factor over. And that’s precisely the place we’re, in a present turned morally the wrong way up. As a result of you realize Adrien’s father, the abusive, close-minded bigot? The Mist is asking us to facet with him. The one clues—for those who may name them clues—that pointed to Adrien’s deranged state are that he wears eyeliner, or that he’s not sure about his sexuality, or that he’s unpopular at school. This present is taking a poisonous, all too actual social stigma—that being homosexual, or bi, and even simply completely different by some means is the same as being dangerously, mentally unstable—and calling it character growth.
In an alternate universe the place rape as a plot gadget doesn’t should be dealt with with an type of delicacy, this story may, may have labored if it gave Alex something—something in any respect—to do. As a substitute, she simply type of exists whereas the characters circling round her provide their judgement. Eve—who at one level appeared to be the bedrock of this shaky present—has been relegated to seething about her daughter from the shadows. Right here, she locks Jay—who, once more, is harmless and I suppose one thing of a Good Man—in a closet, however is considerate sufficient to go away him a number of magazines.
Elsewhere, the remainder of the townsfolk trapped within the mall graduate from “scared and stressed” to “alarmingly cult-like.” Rations are dwindling, and the assembled are prepared to consider something, together with Shelley’s assertion that Alex is part of the mist. She doesn’t consider it, however she asserts it. Or, she did, up till the purpose she discovers Gus’ meals stash saved hidden in his unlocked workplace. Gus brains Shelley over the pinnacle, chokes her to loss of life, after which—as a result of not a single character on this present will not be a horrible human being when push involves shove—he blames the homicide on Alex.
Who’re we alleged to root for in the midst of all this? Characters don’t have to be likable, however they do need to be one thing. The Mist is barely aptly named as a result of its characters are all vaguely discernible outlines, operating by the fog from one horrible factor to the subsequent. After eight episodes there not solely is not any discernible finish aim in sight—simply “surviving” will not be compelling sufficient when many of the essential forged walks by the mist unhurt—however no purpose for us to hope anybody makes it there in any respect. At this level, if this sequence went for the ballsy finale of the 2014 movie, I’d contemplate it a contented ending. That’s harsh, however there may be merely no persona to seize onto throughout the board, a lot much less root for.
Properly, that’s really not true. There’s one small second of saving grace right here. It comes after Nathalie pontificates advert nauseum on miracles, and Black Springs, and Nature herself.
“That is bullshit,” responds an unnamed bearded man—my new hero—earlier than shifting to go away the room. If solely I may comply with him.
- It’s a disgrace how shortly the writers turned Nathalie Raven from intriguingly creepy to the identical stage of homicidal as everybody else, as a result of Frances Conroy continues to exist on one other stage altogether from her castmates, acting-wise.
- It’s additionally a disgrace that, as Adrien, Russell Posner really does put in a fairly nice unhinged efficiency. However the context is simply…unforgivable.
- I’m not totally positive that for those who eliminated Bryan and Mia from this present altogether, something would change. Their solo exploits have principally been superfluous, their hallucinations and flashbacks appear extra necessary to a hypothetical second season, and their romantic pairing reads like Spike TV realizing if it desires to get into the status TV sport, there must be at the very least a bit of intercourse.
- Many individuals each within the feedback and on-line identified how apparent Adrien’s guilt was. However till it was confirmed, I feel I used to be holding out hope that there was extra to it. Anything, actually.
- I’ll say, this episode did embody one among my favourite horror tropes: Somebody stopping in the midst of horrific terror and bloodshed to spray paint ominous graffiti.