“But He stands alone, and who can oppose Him? He does whatever He pleases. He carries out His decree against me, and many such plans He still has in store. That is why I am terrified before Him; when I think of all this, I fear Him. God has made my heart faint; the Almighty has terrified me. Yet I am not silenced by the darkness, by the thick darkness that covers my face.” —Job 23, as read by Kevin Garvey Jr.
“Man said to the universe: ‘Sir, I exist.’ ‘However,’ the universe replied, ‘the fact does not create in me a sense of obligation.’” —”A Man Said to the Universe” by Stephen Crane, as read by Kevin Garvey Jr.
With only two episodes remaining in its first season, The Leftovers decides to keep viewers hanging after last week’s cliffhanger of sorts found Jill showing up at the GR house to see (stay with?) her mother. No, this week we get a flashback to the time immediately before everyone disappeared—and some explanations.
“You’re just going to have to batten down the hatches and finish what you started here, my friend.” —Patti, to Kevin
“You should know, though… I’m a f—in’ mess.” —Kevin
“In your opinion, do you believe the Departed is in a better place?” —Nora
“They weren’t going to leave us alone, right? It was only a matter of time.” —Meg
It’s probably a blessing that The Leftovers is a summer show rather than a fall or winter series because if tonight’s Christmas episode aired in late December, there might be some real public outrage. “B.J and the A.C”—presumably “Baby Jesus and the Anti-Christ”?—depicted the devastating spiritual nadir of the Leftovers, with the town’s Nativity-scene Baby Jesus doll subjected to repeated abuse, even from characters we previously thought sympathetic.
You know the parable, the one about the man in the flood who turns down the help of neighbors while the waters rise and clings to the steadfast belief that God will save him? Then he drowns and so afterwards, he asks God, “Why didn’t you save me?” And God responds, “I sent you two boats and a helicopter—what more were you looking for?”
“Am I awake?” asked police chief Kevin Garvey in the series premiere, as he watched a pack of wild dogs tear apart a noble buck. “You are now, aren’t you?” replied the Mystery Man, who likes to shoot dogs.
My screener for the series premiere of The Leftovers didn’t include an opening-credits sequence. Maybe Peter Berg’s post-Rapture drama is the kind of show that forgoes such convention, and if so, just cue up REM’s “Everybody Hurts” to get in the mood properly.
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