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THE LEFTOVERS Season 2 Episode 8 “International Assassin”

Purgatory as a hotel makes sense in The Leftovers because it’s a transient place where souls are coming and departing. Kevin is stuck in a Hilton version of Hotel California without the pink champagne and colitas but where water erases former identities prepping new tabula rasa souls for the next life to come. But it also serves as a recognizable plot device seen in other shows such as the “Sopranos,” “Mad Men,” and “Boardwalk Empire” to name a few, when characters need a reality check usually framed within some sort of alternate sphere. They inhabit another life role as a reflection of their current one. But faith versus empiricism or spirituality versus cognition continue to dual in The Leftovers, setting up Kevin (Justin Theroux) with an introspective nightmare—staged as a spiritual trial or psychological dream? Let’s just call it a perga-dream. But it still sets him up in a world where he still possesses free will. Read More

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THE LEFTOVERS Season 2 Episode 2 “A Matter of Geography” Review

Kevin Sr. (Scott Glenn) and Patti (Ann Dowd) return, in a sense, from a departure—Kevin Sr. from the psych ward, and Patti, though retrospectively, from the dead. Does this suggest that the departed will someday return? Did they even really leave to begin with? As Season 2 begins to explore the reason of the departure, we know at this point that Jarden isn’t a miracle after all. Perhaps this alludes to the thought that miracles don’t really exist, at least in the way we conceive of their divination. I’m enjoying the game The Leftovers is playing, and maybe I’m onto something. Read More