The Third Day Part 2: Autumn Live Event Recap

The Third Day Part 2 Watery Last Supper

The Third Day Part 2, Autumn, was a 12 hour live streamed event that took place on October 3, 2020, on the real Osea Island, in between the original broadcast of Parts 1 and 2. The event was streamed and recorded as it happened, in one continuous take. Over the course of the long day, Jude Law’s Sam, who has spent the last several months living on the island, undergoes a ritual initiation as island Father.

The ritual takes place during the island’s annual Esus and the Sea festival. The producers had originally planned for the festival to be a musical concert event attended by a crowd of 10,000 people, but the COVID pandemic forced them to scrap those plans. The broadcast of The Third Day was moved from May to October and the concert festival became a religious ritual similar to the Easter tradition of reenacting Jesus’ walk through the Via Dolorosa, the Way of Suffering or Stations of the Cross, on the way to his execution on Good Friday. They limited the crowd to the villagers, with Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine, whose music was memorably used in Part 1, providing solo performances at a few key moments.

Continue reading “The Third Day Part 2: Autumn Live Event Recap”

The Third Day Part 1/ Summer: Season 1 Episode 3 Sunday- The Ghost Recap

The Third Day S1Ep3 Mrs Martin & Sam

Episode 3, The Ghost, answers many of the questions that the first two episodes set up, but it can be a difficult hour of television to watch. Sam starts the hour as a kidnap victim who’s still high on a hallucinogenic drug. What follows is somewhere between a prank-filled ramble through the Fairy Realm and a torturous scramble to escape the Island of the Dead before he’s killed by one of its insane residents. At least Sam is still wearing Mrs Martin’s magic shoes.

There are three competing mythological strands in Part 1 which are being pushed onto Sam by various factions of islanders. In some ways, Sam is on the classic Hero’s Journey, following in the footsteps of Odysseus and the legends of King Arthur. There are also elements of the Christian Stations of the Cross, based on Jesus last day before his crucifixion, in Sam’s weekend events, and those continue on Sunday. And the islanders have pushed Sam toward the heroic Threefold Death all weekend.

The Threefold Death is an ancient Indo-European rite which involves death by hanging (or strangulation or falling), drowning (or poisoning) and by wounding (or fire/burning). The death might involve all three injuries happening to one person or a different person experiencing each injury. Combined, the human sacrifices made to Esus (god of war/hanging), Teutatis (tribal protector/fire) and Taranis (god of thunder, sky, sun and wheel of the year/drowning) were Threefold Deaths. Some on the island want to kill Sam, either for real or symbolically. Other want him to do the killing, either for real or symbolically.

For two days, Sam refused to take the bait and also avoided capture by the more violent islanders. At the end of episode 2, the island’s main instigators seemed to have finally forced the issue, drugging/poisoning Sam, then leaving him alone in the woods like a child in a fairy tale. Are Mrs Martin and Jess acting as Sam’s Judases? Is Mrs Martin the island’s fairy queen, leading Jess and Epona to tempt this Odysseus into staying an extra year or 20? Or are the islanders preparing to act out the Osea version of The Wicker Man?

Continue reading “The Third Day Part 1/ Summer: Season 1 Episode 3 Sunday- The Ghost Recap”

The Third Day Part 1/Summer: Season 1 Episode 2 Saturday- The Son Recap

The Third Day S1Ep2 Jess & Sam

In episode 2, The Son, Sam and Jess spend another day and night together on Osea Island. We learn more about Jess’s situation with her daughters and the death of Sam’s son. Sam visits the island’s historian to learn more about local customs, then in the evening, he and Jess take part in a dry run of the upcoming festival.

It’s all perfectly normal and nothing strange happens at all.

Recap

The episode begins with Sam’s nightmare from episode 1, which could be a recurring dream. Sam is in a moonlit, open field. He’s not trapped or encumbered- maybe he wishes he still was. In the distance, he sees the boy through a rounded opening in a wall of forest branches and greenery. As Sam calls out for him, the boy runs away and disappears through the portal, into whatever realm is on the other side- purgatory, death, uncertainty, H*ll.

This is a living wall, instead of a wall of stone, suggesting that some part of Sam hasn’t accepted his son’s death. It’s also a reminder that the islanders inherited the Druids’ belief in reincarnation, with its fluid boundaries between life, death and rebirth. Death is not necessarily an impenetrable wall here.

Continue reading “The Third Day Part 1/Summer: Season 1 Episode 2 Saturday- The Son Recap”

The Third Day Season 1 Part 1/Summer: Episode 1 Friday- The Father Recap

cq5dam.web_.1200.675

This is a recap of Part 1, episode 1, The Father, which includes full details of the plot. My non-spoilery review of the season is HERE.

The Third Day takes place in a remote part of the UK, on an island that’s cut off from the mainland for most of the day. Osea Island is accessible by car for only a few hours a day at low tide by driving across an ancient Roman causeway that floods when the tide rises. It’s inhabited by a small community of year round residents who have their own traditions and beliefs which blend the old Celtic religion with Christianity.

Sam (Jude Law), a grieving father, stumbles into this community accidentally after saving the life of a young woman from Osea. He feels a connection to the community that he doesn’t understand, but also a sense of chaotic urgency as various obstacles prevent him from leaving the island and returning to his own troubled life.

Osea Island is a real island off the coast of Essex which takes on a life of its own in the story. The characters seem to travel over every inch of this tiny paradise as the show progresses through summer, autumn and winter. This allows viewers to get to know Osea’s tempestuous personality and beauty up close and to get a sense of how its natural elements affect the direction of the community.

Continue reading “The Third Day Season 1 Part 1/Summer: Episode 1 Friday- The Father Recap”

HBO’s The Third Day Review

100261303-6138707-the-third-day-s1-stv1-hbo

HBO’s The Third Day is a story of loss and isolation and how those experiences affect the mind, from simple grief to community wide torment twisted into ritual ordeal. The tale is timely in a way the creators probably couldn’t have imagined when they began working on it.

At the center of the series is Sam, a man who’s never recovered from the loss of a child or the shape his need for redemption takes. The series is also a psychological thriller and folk horror narrative which takes place on a remote British island accessible only by boat or an ancient Roman causeway that’s above water for just a few hours a day at low tide. The tiny community on Osea Island have developed their own traditions and beliefs, which combine ancient Celtic mythology with the unique history and location of the island. Visitors to the island are inevitably drawn into the community’s rituals, which are meant to restore balance to the world.

Continue reading “HBO’s The Third Day Review”

Helstrom Season 1 Episode 10: Hell Storm Recap

Helstrom S1Ep10 Daimon:Basar Lifts Crow

In episode 10, Sister Gabriella turns to the Church and The Blood to help her out of her rather large predicament. Victoria and Ana find that Daimon/Basar has been moved to a new part of the hospital. Henry stays with Louise during the aftermath of their battle with the demons. And Chris discovers that his duties as Keeper demon aren’t finished yet.

This episode is the season, and probably the series, finale. While the Helstrom family never quite manages to get the entire extended family together in one place for the reunion that The Blood has dreaded for 20 years, it does end with a cameo that teases how great the next set of episodes could be. This season was low budget and treated like Marvel’s red-headed stepchild, but I love it for its heart and story. Whether it gets a 2nd season or not, I hope more people discover how good it is.

Recap

We start with a flashback to 20 years ago. Young Daimon rides his bike out onto a very tall bridge over a river. He climbs over the guardrail and holds on, looking down at the water as he remembers the last argument his family had, when his dad was kidnapping Ana. This is the suicide attempt Basar told Ana about.

When Daimon’s done replaying the memory, he jumps. His fall is mysteriously broken a couple of feet above the water. He hovers there for a moment and hears his father’s voice say, “You’ll always be my son.” Then he drops the rest of the way into the river.

Continue reading “Helstrom Season 1 Episode 10: Hell Storm Recap”

Helstrom Season 1 Episode 9: Vessels Recap

Helstrom S1Ep9 Gabriella & Daimon Wake Up

In episode 9, the gang reunites to deal with some unusual circumstances. Basar’s demon mouth is still in Daimon, so he’s had a bit of a personality change. Ana, Louise and Victoria lock him up in Victoria’s old room while they work on a solution. Gabriella is held captive by Raum and Mother, with Mother is masquerading as Daimon. Chris and Derrick bond over painting a room blood red, but Keeper demon interrupts with an urgent message for Chris. Taker finally arrives in Portland and wants to whisk Louise away to Mexico. She’s busy coping with several demons and chemo.

There’s some knife play and sparks and an exorcism or two. Plus a fierce competition for cutest couple.

Recap

Gabriella wakes up half naked in a strange bed with Daimon. On the surface, it’s not the worst thing that could happen to her. Unfortunately, she doesn’t remember anything that’s happened since she got that terrible headache after kissing him. Thankfully, he’s not the type to roofie her before he got in the shower.

The really bad news is, they’re both suffering from demon possession hangovers and they were both demon raped last night.

Continue reading “Helstrom Season 1 Episode 9: Vessels Recap”

Helstrom Season 1 Episode 8: Underneath Recap

Helstrom S1Ep8 Daimon & Gabriella Shiny Happy People

In episode 8, Daimon and Gabriella visit the Helstrom family home to find the missing piece of the knife. While there, Daimon relives old memories and The Blood make a nuisance of themselves. Ana and Louise have a heart to heart, then decide to do a little demon hunting together. Mother organizes her plans to relocate herself and Basar into new hosts.

Both Daimon and Ana confront their childhood trauma as they confront their enemies and come out stronger afterward. Unfortunately, their enemies are growing stronger as well.

Recap

As Daimon and Gabriella arrive home after the attack by The Blood, he calls Ana to warn her she’s in danger. Gabriella wants Daimon to go to the police, but he doesn’t think they’d take his side in the dispute. Once they’re inside, she insists on examining the bullet wound in his shoulder, which is already healing.

Gabriella assures Daimon that he acted on reflex, so what happened wasn’t his fault. Daimon thinks he still deserves to be punished, maybe put down, for losing control. Gabriella argues he acted in self defense after The Blood shot him and attacked him, so what he did was justified.

Continue reading “Helstrom Season 1 Episode 8: Underneath Recap”

Helstrom Season 1 Episode 7: Scars Recap

Helstrom S1Ep6 Daimon & Louise in Office

In episode 7, Daimon and Ana deal with the realization that they sacrificed their mother to get rid of Spivey, but he wasn’t their father. As they fall into old patterns of blame and withdrawal, Ana returns to San Francisco with Chris, while Daimon sinks further into depression and isolation. Both Helstroms lash out at those closest to them. Gabriella, Chris and Louise try to talk them down. Taker is held hostage by the Blood, who blame him and the Helstroms for the attack on their hotel.

The Blood share Daimon’s talent for having terrible instincts.

Recap

Twenty years ago, Ana had just come back from her time on the run with her father. She sits in an observation room, fiddling with her butterfly bracelet, while Louise and Henry discuss her future as they watch her from behind a one-way mirror. Louise reports that a psychologist observed Ana exhibited “low affect, limited empathic response and sometimes a manner that’s just plain unnerving.”

Henry notes that what she’s been through would mess anyone up. Louise says that Daimon had night terrors for two months. She’s afraid that too much exposure to Ana would cause him to regress. And, Ana did something to one of the nurses that made her faint and feel like she was dying. Henry recognizes that Ana has a supernatural power. Louise sees it as evil.

Daimon must not have revealed his own evil powers to her yet.

Continue reading “Helstrom Season 1 Episode 7: Scars Recap”

Helstrom Season 1 Episode 6: Leviathan Recap

Helstrom S1Ep6 Chris & Ana Snack in Hospital

In episode 6, Ana spends time with Victoria and Chris at the hospital while Daimon and Gabriella make their way back to St Teresa’s. The horror hotel demons make life difficult for everyone. Spivey visits his human host’s home and family.

Recap

Mrs Spivey locks her children in a room so they’re safe and don’t witness whatever is about to happen between her and her husband. Former Nurse, now Demon Spivey has returned home for the first time since his possession and his wife is frightened and confused. While he’s been gone, she’s been questioned by the authorities and didn’t know what to tell them. As he searches in a desk for something, she begs him to explain what’s going on with him.

He doesn’t answer her questions. He finds his St Teresa’s hospital security badge and attaches it to the scrubs he’s wearing, then strides toward his wife. Roughly, he pulls her toward him as if he’s going to kiss her. Instead, he bites her lip, hard, while she screams.

This is the 3rd demon who’s bitten someone. I stand by my theory that biting can be used to mark someone for possession the way a slash can.

Continue reading “Helstrom Season 1 Episode 6: Leviathan Recap”