In typical The Leftovers fashion, any answers that we may think we're getting closer to actually just lead to more questions. Now I've been a fan of Damon Lindelof's work since his Lost days so this is mostly expected, but it does seem as though we're getting a constant stream of open-ended story arcs. The Guilty Remnant, Holy Wayne, Kevin Garvey Sr.'s (and now Dean's) mysterious voices, a specific issue of National Geographic, etc all twist and turn in an endless spin cycle of exposition. "We'll get to all of these things in time," The Leftovers seems to say, "but loose ends don't need to be tied up in the middle of a season."
Kevin Garvey is now becoming explicitly aware of his 'blackouts' and this awareness may drive him further into either aggressive, self-defeating behavior or perhaps (and I'm hoping) into accepting the unknown - specifically what his father, Kevin Garvey Sr. has been pushing him towards. Or maybe those are both actually the same path and there is no way out for the Chief. In "Cairo", Kevin falls asleep in his bed only to wake up at an old cabin - apparently some place that Kevin used to frequent when he was younger - with Dean. He discovers Patti tied up inside and we learn shortly afterwards that (according to Dean) Kevin had gone out, gotten drunk, kidnapped Patti and brought her here.
The always conflicted Kevin Garvey tries to do what he feels is the right thing and let Patti go, but everything (and everyone) works against him. Patti maintains that she will report everything that happened if she is set free (which would certainly ruin his professional career and strain all of his relationships), and Dean physically restrains Kevin and tells him to go back to sleep so that the real Kevin (the one that supposedly spearheaded all of this craziness in the first place) might reappear. There is a lot of information to digest within these scenes at the cabin. First, the painting of the deer in the cabin closely resembles one that is actually in the National Geographic issue so prominently featured in the last episode. Second, Dean seems aware of the fact that Kevin doesn't fully grasp the situations that he continually finds himself in (to what extent, I'm not quite sure), and we also see Dean talking to "voices" at one point, much like Kevin Garvey Sr. One new question that presents itself here then is are those voices the same or are Kevin's father and Dean working on opposite "sides"? The way the show presents this information lends credibility to a few theories that I've heard about Dean being guided by "evil" and Kevin Garvey Sr. by "good". Or is it the other way around? Third, Kevin finds himself in the woods full of damning evidence that he has been here many times before - his shirts are bloody and dirty, hanging from the trees surrounding a well-used campfire. We also see quite a few dirty, used work boots - does this mean that Kevin may be leading a group of people, perhaps the same group that stoned Gladys earlier this season? That guy needs some sleep, for sure.
Something that I touched on in a previous review was that Patti and Gladys shared an "I'm ready" moment at the beginning of the "Gladys" episode earlier this year before she was stoned to death. In "Cairo", Patti eventually tells Kevin that Gladys had agreed to being martyred (presumably in that scene) for the cause and that she knew that her time was up as well. It makes you wonder if Gladys is somehow connected to what seems to be happening to Kevin as well as Dean and Kevin Garvey Sr. Certainly she knows more than she lets on. Going back to the stoning, something that bothers me is that Patti is talking when she is near death - begging her assailants to stop - perhaps this is just a natural reaction to being inches away from a cruel and violent demise, but one would think she would remain stoic if she had readily agreed. More than likely, then, she didn't agree so readily or there was more at stake. After entering the cabin to find Patti gasping for air under a plastic bag (Dean's doing), Kevin makes a decision to sacrifice his career and possibly a lot more by cutting Patti's bonds to set her free. Patti will have none of this, as it seems she has already set much of this in motion (including a larger Guilty Remnant plot to dress up Loved Ones versions of the departed in their stolen clothing for some kind of shocking demonstration), and kills herself with a shard of glass from Dean and Kevin's earlier physical confrontation.
Here are Patti's parting words from a William Yeats poem called He Bids His Beloved Be At Peace:
I HEAR the Shadowy Horses, their long manes a-shake,
Their hoofs heavy with tumult, their eyes glimmering white;
The North unfolds above them clinging, creeping night,
The East her hidden joy before the morning break,
The West weeps in pale dew and sighs passing away,
The South is pouring down roses of crimson fire:
O vanity of Sleep, Hope, Dream, endless Desire,
The Horses of Disaster plunge in the heavy clay:
Beloved, let your eyes half close, and your heart beat
Over my heart, and your hair fall over my breast,
Drowning love's lonely hour in deep twilight of rest,
And hiding their tossing manes and their tumultuous feet.
Yikes, Patti. Thanks for the parting poetry - this seems to be referring to the four horsemen of the apocalypse while also expressing a new awakening (via the sunrise). I suppose Patti is alluding to what is about to happen in Mapleton (and perhaps across all of the chapters of the Guilty Remnant). Whatever the Guilty Remnant actually does with the fabricated bodies of the departed, it will surely be the most impactful thing that they have accomplished and truly have a lasting effect. We are already seeing more and more distraught people joining up with the Guilty Remnant (including Jill, although I think her intentions may be different). They may need to buy some more real estate.
As for Kevin, how can he do the noble thing now? Even with the best of intentions, he is obviously leading some kind of double life and exposing all of that (or even part of it) to everyone would only result in punishment for him. From the very beginning we see that Kevin is a good force in this town, and one of the only people who seem to have their head on straight (besides what happens when he falls asleep and/or blacks out, obviously), so is it better for him to plunge straight into chaos or give himself up to be locked away like his old man? The events of the next episode leading up to the season finale will no doubt be filled with fire and brimstone, and personally I dig it. Although obviously about the struggle between good and evil, The Leftovers exists in a time and place where morality itself is skewed, so who knows and who is to say which is which?
So after last week surprised us with a crazy ending (both Patti stabbing herself with a shard of glass in an attempt to implicate Kevin and Jill turning up at the Guilty Remnant), I would expect nothing less of The Leftovers than to avoid the cliffhanger and throw us back into the past. It's really more of a move from Damon Lindelof's Lost, but certainly welcome here as it serves to build tension before the season finale which airs in two weeks. Anyway, on to the good stuff..
Laurie has been a bit of a mystery to us since she was introduced as Kevin Garvey's wife and one of the Guilty Remnant. Bits and pieces of information have been floating around though which you might have picked up. It is revealed in "The Garveys at Their Best" that Laurie was a psychologist before the Sudden Departure (I'm just assuming that's capitalized in this world) and, in fact, one of her patients was Patti who went on to become the head of the Mapleton chapter of the Guilty Remnant. Hearkening back (or forward, rather) to "Gladys", we gain a greater understanding of what was in the brown paper bag that Patti left on the doorstep of her [presumably] ex-husband's house. Shit. In addition, we see all of the build-up that caused Laurie to join the Guilty Remnant and leave her life in the first place. Not only was her and Kevin's relationship tumultuous to say the least, but she was pregnant with a baby that no one else knew about and who disappeared in the Sudden Departure along with the others. Not that the Sudden Departure wasn't bad enough already, but the thought of women at various stages of pregnancy suddenly losing their unborn children is a startling one.
Elsewhere in Mapleton, we see a surprisingly lighthearted Jill (with braces, no less) who is as far as she could possibly be from the older, more jaded version of the same girl that we know now. We also learn that Tommy apparently gets loaded and heads over to his biological father's house quite often. Kevin spends the episode chasing an "unstable" deer throughout the city and trying to capture it alive, though it ends up dead at the very end of the show (and that series of events also leads Kevin to infidelity). The way that Kevin Garvey's past was portrayed in The Leftovers previously had led me to believe that he (and his family) were happy.. but it appears as though Kevin has never quite been happy, never found his true calling or reason for being. Foreshadowing all of the crazy events with Dean and Kevin Garvey Sr., at one point Kevin is on a run and sees a car with four women in it drive up to him. "Are you ready?" they ask him. When Kevin looks confused they seem to laugh and drive off only to have a sewer grate nearby blow off the street and into the air with a visible eruption of flames. This seems like the moment that the top comes off the bottle, so to speak, for Kevin. Whether the women in that car have anything to do with the more recent developments in the show or are even real at all remains to be seen.
Does the deer in this episode symbolize Kevin's sanity or how he thinks of himself? Is Laurie's baby really gone, and if so were Patti's words in the therapy session, "there's something wrong inside you" somehow related or just referring to the unsettling feelings that many characters seemed to have? When and why does Kevin Garvey Sr. go all nutty bar? Why would Laurie follow someone like Patti whom she knows is not completely well or mentally stable? Lots of questions posed here like usual.. thanks The Leftovers, I'll be not so patiently waiting until the season finale in two weeks!
We're joined by fantasy football veteran and former drinkfive.com contributor Vince Foss as we discuss the very best plays moving forward into championship week. We'll analyze the matchups and go over recent NFL news and updates that can impact the production of your players.
For Fantasy Football team managers, playing in week 15 is all about making the right starts to get to the championship. Whether you fought hard to get into the playoffs from the bottom of the league or coasted into a bye spot early on, everyone is on an even playing field and (in most cases) only has one shot.
We'll be paying special attention to the players that you should and shouldn't start in week 15 and what matchups to keep in mind should you make the championship game in Week 16. We're joined by regular guest and drinkfive.com contributor Mike Mocerino.
Welcome back! We're joined this week by fantasy football veteran Matt Ellis to discuss the best starts moving forward into Week 13. This is the last week of the regular season of most fantasy football leagues, so put your best foot forward!