F&S Deep Dive Into “Lovely Dark & Deep” Territory On THE PURGE

thepurge_castinfo_joe_desktop_2880x900Episode Six “Lovely Dark and Deep”
Written by Nick Betancourt & Krystal Houghton Ziv
Directed by Nicole Weyr

[All  images courtesy Patti Perret/USA Network]

For a full recap of episodes of The Purge on USA (and all his other cool recaps), check out Father Son Holy Gore!

Now, on to the All American Carnage of The Purge, Episode Seven – “Lovely Dark and Deep”!

WARNING! Converging Plot Threads (and Spoilers) Ahead!  

*Jenna (Hannah Anderson) & Rick Betancourt (Colin Woodell) Rick and Jenna bicker over raising the Sandin Security gate to save Lila (Lili Simmons). Neither of them sees a figure sneaking into the house before the gate shuts. The Rick-Jenna-Lila triangle continues inside Chez Betancourt, with Jenna expending all of her concern on Lila; from gently cleaning Lila’s wounds, to offering to let her stay as long as she needs, before giving Lila a goodnight kiss on the forehead. 

Lila repays the hospitality later in the evening when she brutally stabs the gun wielding home invader. The now deceased intruder? None other than the Betancourt’s passive-aggressive neighbor Ross (Joe Chrest). Turns out he’d had enough of Jenna and Rick chopping down his maple tree, parking in front of his house, AND (horrors) not inviting Ross and his wife over for dinner.

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Lots of Jenna/Lila/Rick angst this episode.

*Miguel (Gabriel Chavarra) & Penelope Guerrero (Jessica Garza) are the only characters who spend any time in the woods, which may be “dark and deep” but are not at all “lovely”. They spend their time fleeing from  Bygones, stealthily running  past some Fight Club wannabes, and bickering about the past before escaping from a Purge Night snare trap.

*Jane Barbour (Amanda Warren), tied up as an unwilling exhibit in the Most Sexist Party Room Ever, endures verbal, emotional and sexual harassment from David Ryker (William Baldwin) in the present.

Her past, in the form of flashbacks of her childhood, provide no respite. Lorraine Barbour (Deneen Tyler) loves her daughter and works tirelessly to provide for their family of two. But where Jane sees brains and hard work as the pathways to success, Lorraine believes her daughter must “play the game” and use her looks. Attractiveness is an asset Jane must use to “play their game” and win.   That’s why Jane asked a  nurse (several episodes back) to relay the message “I forgive you” to her hospitalized mother. As part of that game, Jane’s mother corralled her daughter  into a humiliating (if successful) run on the teenage beauty pageant circuit for the scholarship money.

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Kudos to The Purge for NOT making Jane’s mother a one-dimensional “bad mom”.

Back in the present, David doesn’t get to enjoy his lecherous activities for too long. The Joe the Sandwich Guy (Lee Tergesen) story joins Jane’s. He cuts the power, then bursts into the party room, shotgun blazing. He cuts the ropes binding Jane’s wrists and buys time for Jane to free the other imprisoned women. Surprisingly enough, Anya (Alyshia Ochse) follows Jane’s prompt to assist her. After they are all unbound, Jane shoots David in the head.

Earlier, Jane persuaded Anya to take her Matron Saints contact card. As Joe’s van drives away from the scene, the Matron Saints van pulls up to David Ryker’s house.

Notes on “Rise Up”

*Is Lila lying? She seems genuinely shell-shocked, but …

*I hope this is heading for a twist, because the Lila/Jenna/Rick triangle is the least compelling storyline on this show.

*All of Jenna’s concern and worry are directed towards Lila and her unborn baby. At this point I wouldn’t blame Rick if he separates from Jenna, works out a custody arrangement regarding their baby, and leaves Jenna and Lila to their own devices.

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Jane’s vision of her life is very different from her mother’s plans.

*There is a whole area of legal practice devoted to “Neighbor Law

*Did Ross know there are entire books to deal with issues like neighbors cutting down a tree on the property line, or finding out if you can do anything about people parking in front of your house on a public street.

*Turns out Fight Clubs actually exist outside of movies and television.

*Snare traps aren’t usually set up for humans.

*Hmm. I didn’t see anyone eating pancakes at Pete the Cop’s hideout, but I bet that’s where Miguel and Penny end up.

*Ziplines can put you at risk for anything from broken bones caused by falls to flesh eating bacteria, but not being burned alive.

*Robert Frost’s 1922 poem,”Stopping by Woods On a Snowy Evening” is the source of this episode’s title.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,   
But I have promises to keep,   
And miles to go before I sleep,   
And miles to go before I sleep.

*Jane’s family hails from the island of Barbados.

*Her high school, named after the third President Thomas Jefferson, is one of many, many schools named after the oft-controversial Founding Father.

*”If this is about scholarships, why am I wearing a bikini?” Ironic that America under the NFFA features pageants with the swimsuit competition that both the Miss Teen USA and Miss America pageants eliminated in real life.

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Penny and Miguel pause for an argument in the woods.

*I loved the  contrast between Jane’s academic accomplishments (Captain of the Math team, VP of Student Counsel, Excelling  in science and calculus) read over the PA, and her refusal to smile on the runway.

*Did Lorraine Barbour have a part in Jane forgoing a science or math centered career path for a more lucrative job in finance?

*A plaque on the wall of Jane’s home reads “I can do things through Christ who strengthens me”. This quotes Paul’s letter to the Philippians, Chapter 4, verse 13.

*David Ryker was the Worst Boss Ever, but he knew his Renaissance artists (comparing the terror in Jane’s eyes to the work of Caravaggio).

Next Week:  Episode Eight “Giving Time Is Here” (which makes me think of the Peanuts Christmas song “Christmas Time Is Here“).

The Purge airs Tuesdays on USA at 10/9c.

More official images, information, and other goodies can be found here.

For more of my deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and Channel Zero, check here at F&S and at SciFi4Me.com.

Until next week citizens, “Just remember all the good The Purge does.”

F&S Deep Dive Starring Joe the Sandwich Guy, “The Forgotten” Man of THE PURGE!

thepurge_castinfo_joe_desktop_2880x900Episode Six “The Forgotten”
Written by Jeremy Robbins
Directed by Nina Lopez Corrado

[All  images courtesy Patti Perret/USA Network]

For a full recap of episodes of The Purge on USA (and all his other cool recaps), check out Father Son Holy Gore!

Now, on to the All American Carnage of The Purge, Episode Six – “The Forgotten”!

The Purge - Season 1
RIP, Boho Abusive Junkie Henry

Plot Threads – 

*Jenna (Hannah Anderson) & Rick Betancourt (Colin Woodell) Running for their lives from costumed, skateboard-riding Purgers, Rick and Jenna make it home alive. They proceed to bicker away the evening over – what else – Jenna’s fixation with Lila and (according to Jenna), Rick’s failure to reject the NFFA and everything they stand for.
Of course, their post-argument Moment of Bonding, discussing what their unborn daughter would like to eat (eggs over easy), is interrupted by the arrival of the bloody yet Indestructible Lila Stanton,  banging on the door and begging for her life.

*Miguel (Gabriel Chavarra) & Penelope Guerrero (Jessica Garza) Tied up to witch burning stakes, Miguel and Penny endure a seemingly endless round of taunts and threats from Henry (Dylan Arnold). Mr. Abusive Boho Junkie  gets so wrapped up in talking about how he’ll torture them to death that he fails to anticipate Miguel’s knockout headbutt.
Miguel chokes Henry to death, frees Penny, and the pair escape via a corpse laden cart carrying leaving the Carnival of Flesh.

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David Ryker is a bit too calm about Jane ordering his murder.

*Jane Barbour (Amanda Warren) Jane’s boss David Ryker (William Baldwin) reacts with remarkable nonchalance to the news that she targeted him for murder. He congratulates Jane on her out of the box thinking, offering her a drink and a guided tour of his home.
Said tour includes a lecture on the restored building’s history, a viewing of his expensive art collection – and the sight of a shot in the forehead Bracka (AzMarie Livingston) laying dead in Ryker’s oh-so-expensive bathtub.
Jane’s tour concludes in a Party Room. Filled with women tied up in lit alcoves, fondled by David’s all-male guest list. Ryker explains it’s all ok because the men  “look and touch but nothing more. Everything happens over the clothes … if the women behave and keep quiet, they get to go home in the morning” before two of his hired goons drag Jane away.

*Joe the Sandwich Guy (Lee Tergesen) Joe gets the flashbacks this week. In November 2018, Joe loses his job at Saticoy Supply Company due to the endless quest for corporate profits; Saticoy is making money, just not enough to avoid getting shutdown without warning or severance. In the present, Joe easily dispatches the three thugs beating a man to death. The man credits Joe as “a lifesaver” while the Purge radio voiceover urges citizens to “become the person tonight you want to be tomorrow.”

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Penelope discovers a reason to live at death’s door.

Notes on “Rise Up”

*Is Jenna projecting on to Rick, or just unable to see her own faults? Rick may want to do business with the NFFA, but she’s the one committing adultery with the daughter of one of the most powerful families in the NFFA power structure.

*The gruff male voice telling Jenna “She’s dead” reminded me of the ending of the classic of the short story/radio drama/movie Sorry, Wrong Number. This 1943 radio play by Lucille Fletcher was adapted by her for 1948 movie starring Barbara Stanwyk and directed by Anatole Litvak. The story of a husband desperately trying to prevent the murder of his wife after he changes his mind about arranging her death also echoes in Jane’s storyline.

*Jenna does show some practicality in ditching her high heels to run for her life (I’m looking at you, Jurassic World), but she continues The Purge TV tradition of RUNNING FOR YOUR LIFE DOWN THE MIDDLE OF A WELL-LIT STREET.

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Jane realizes she’s caught in a trap set by her boss.

*Do Pixar movies exitst in The Purge Universe? Boho Junkie Henry fell into the trap of monologuing, made famous in The Incredibles (2004) villain Syndrome’s taunt to Mr. Incredible, “Oh-ho-ho-ho, you sly dog! You got me monologuing!

*Henry also worked the classic Bond villain cliché “We’re not that different, you and me into his busy night of talking instead of getting down to business.

*MedlinePlus.gov didn’t have  “almost being beaten to death” in their list of  “Causes of Corneal Injury”.

*Penny, who longed for death, undergoes a rebirth of sorts escaping in a cart full of death bodies.

* “Please exit the Witch tent now.” Hands down, this is funniest line of the series so far.

*I couldn’t find any record of a artist named Le Mercier – the French painter of the Dali-esque work David Ryker paid $600,000 for.

*Sandin Security gets another mention as the security system installed by David Ryker.

*According to this episode’s security cam, it is 1:03 am on March 22nd.

*Jane reenacts the “flee from the obvious danger only to wind up in a worse situation” horror trope when she avoids getting in the elevator with David – only to find Bracka’s body in the bathtub.

The Purge - Season 1
The most interesting character on The Purge series, ladies and gentlemen!

*David’s disgust for women who “run to the Times” with allegations of sexual misconduct echo real life event in the MeToo era.

*To David, Jane’s humanity – calling off the hit on him – only reveals her weakness.

*Now, let us examine the lunch of the Forgotten Man himself –

Sandwich consisting of Oscar Mayer Bologna on White Bread (probably Wonder Bread brand), with French’s Yellow Mustard. (Extra points for artistically dabbing in on the knife beforehand) Along with (probably) Sargento sliced cheese ( it doesn’t look like the classic Kraft Singles package). Add in a  Coca-Cola, a package of Lays Potato Chips and some Lifesavers for dessert and you have yourself a meal.

*Saticoy Supply Co. derives it’s name from a community in California, and the language of the Chumash Native American tribe of that region.

*The Saticoy calendar is open to November 2018. Joe watches a People’s Court type program that refers to a 2015 dispute.

*Joe’s unseen narrator state that the Statue of Liberty “hands you a torch. Now come and take it.”

*Given the stark us vs them economic message of the episode, “The Forgotten” probably refers to FDR’s use of the phrase in 1932  “… the forgotten man at the bottom of the economic pyramid.”

“We’re dinosaurs and meteor’s coming” – John Owens (Steve Coulter)

*I watched the episode twice and had no idea that Joe and his co-worker John Owens were related as in father and son related. At least that gives us a last name for Joe.

???When Joe was searching for work, did he find a new calling rescuing people? Who provided the GPS and ID of people to save? This is the most interesting thread on the show right now.

Next Week: The Purge heads for “Lovely Dark and Deep” territory in Episode Seven.

The Purge airs Tuesdays on USA at 10/9c.

More official images, information, and other goodies can be found here.

For more of my deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and Channel Zero, check here at F&S and at SciFi4Me.com.

Until next week citizens, “Just remember all the good The Purge does.”

F & S Deep Dive – THE PURGE Urges Citizens to “Take What’s Yours”

 

thepurge_castinfo_joe_desktop_2880x900

Episode Two “Take What’s Yours”
Written by Thomas Kelly
Directed by Anthony Hemingway
[All images courtesy Patti Perret/USA Network. The Purge: Anarchy image courtesy The Purge Facebook page ]

After taking deep dives into Bates Motel, The Exorcist, and most recently Channel Zero (here at F&S and at SciFi4Me.com), I’m plunging into a weekly look at the symbolism, clues, and connective tissues of The Purge series on USA Network. The first chapter of this ten episode “TV event series” premieres September 4 on USA, with the first and last episodes simulcast on Syfy.

Now, on to the All American Carnage of Episode Two, “Take What’s Yours”.

The Purge - Season 1
Oh Alison, what did you see?

Plot Threads

*Miguel (Gabriel Chavarra) & Penelope Guerrero (Jessica Garza) – Miguel interrupts his search for his sister Penelope and the Blue Bus of Death to help a history teacher and insurance adjuster treat a gunshot victim at a minivan triage station. In return for his battlefield wound-finding expertise, the pair direct him to  “Pete the Flop Cop”. If anyone knows about the Blue Bus of Death, it’s him. Enroute to Pete’s, Miguel is trapped into competing in “Otis’s Autorama Annual Gauntlet” (bad thing), but survives the Worst Escape Room Ever and wins a sweet muscle car (good thing). He hits the road again in search of Penny, finding Pete the Flop Cop (Dominic Fumusa), but no answers about the Blue Bus of Death.

On said BBoD, Penny tries and fails to calm her fellow cultist Melissa (Emmanuelle Nadeau) before Good Leader Tavis (Fiona Dourif) selects Melissa as the next “volunteer”. This sends the poor girl into total meltdown mode. Penny asks to take Sister Melissa’s place, but can only watch in horror as two masked mend drag her friend, begging for her life, into the darkness.

The Purge - Season 1
Sure, she looks serene now, but Penny is in for a surprise.

* Jenna (Hannah Anderson) & Rick Betancourt (Colin Woodell) – Both try and fail to avoid awkward small talk with Lila (Lili Simmons). In separate encounters, Lila presents a comforting (“My dad will take care of you.”) and seductive face to Jenna (initiating a make out session by the pool), and a veiled blackmail threat to Rick (“My dad doesn’t know anything about you.”). Plot threads begin to intertwine – Miguel’s winning Gauntlet run is broadcast on TV screens in the Stanton’s ballroom.

*Jane Barbour (Amanda Warren) – On the 38th floor of Ryker Moore Equity, Alison snoops in Jane’s office and sees something on Jane’s laptop that freaks her out. Later, she not so-subtly asks Jane who’s on her “Purge List”. Jane snoops in her boss’s office in-between flashbacks of David Ryker’s  (Billy Baldwin) hiring her, harassing her, then passing Jane over for promotion in favor of Anya (Alyshia Ochse). She also recalls hiring Braka (AzMarie Livingston) for a Purge Night hit on somebody who is probably named David Ryker.

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Wonder if David Ryker is actually in the building on Purge Night?

*Sandwich Guy (Lee Tergesen) – He may be credited as “Joe” (I think), but to me this masked man is now and always Sandwich Guy. Is he on a Purge Night to hurt or help? After preparing an all American white bread & bologna with French’s mustard sandwich, this masked man hits the streets. But en route to an address, he sees two men breaking into a house and stops. Is he going to prevent a crime, or participate in it?  Is he going to kill someone, or save them?

Notes on “Take What’s Yours”

*Lila’s Lizzie Borden mask may be a clue to her plans for Purge Night. Non-participation waiver or not, it would be interesting if she plans to deal with Mom and Dad as Lizzie allegedly handled hers.

*Lila, slithering around the Purge Party in her green sequined dress, reminds me of a snake sliding through the grass. Green is the color of envy – does she covet control over the Stanton fortune?

The Purge - Season 1
I can’t read the slogan below Otis’s Autorama sign on the right, & it bugs me.

*As the episode begins, the clock display is counting down from 11:54; looks like The Purge commenced five minutes earlier.

*Miguel’s commentary while he’s driving through the streets – and the audience watching the simulcast of his run through the Most Lethal Escape Room Ever – feel very “first person shooter-video gamey”, at least to me.

*At first I wondered if the mobile recue unit referring to Ray as a “Flop Cop” meant that he was, well, an actual cop. But this is a poker reference, not anything law enforcement related.

*The female member of the triage unit Miguel encounters says that they are protected on Purge Night because of “unwritten Purge law” and claims that human nature tends towards order. In the words of Henry Adams, “Chaos was the law of nature; Order was the dream of man.”

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Braka has no time for Jane’s pre-Purge Pity Party monologue.

*This week in Purge Product Placement – Alison uses an HP laptop.

*David Ryker reference to the “promise of America – opportunity for all” could be a tell that he buys into the idea of America as the “Land of Opportunity”. This concept is one of the founding ideals of America – although there’s debate as to it’s validity.

*This week at the Stanton party, Jenna tries a delectable NFFA-themed Parfait.

*Could Jenna be dealing with alcohol dependency issues (or possible expecting?) – she is sticking to seltzer water, and again mentions her upset stomach.

*Miguel’s prize for surviving the Gauntlet?  Looks like a  classic American Muscle car – a mint condition Chevy Chevelle.

*Miguel’s winning run through Otis’s Autorama “Otis’s Annual Purge Night Gauntlet” (7th annual) clocked in at about five minutes –  5:06:02.

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Again, a shocking waste of prime Purge Night sponsor opportunities.

*Does Janes flashback occur before the NFFA comes to power? I can’t see how the America of the New Founding Fathers would consider saying “Merry Christmas” as a taboo. No more “War on Christmas” under their rule, I’m sure.

*I would be pleasantly surprised if Jane’s target wasn’t her boss David. The show could surprise us an make Janes target her rival Anya. But I’m probably wrong.

*Pete the Flop Cop must be a Marvel comics fan – the password to his lair is “Excelsior“.

*LOVED Braka telling Jane to  “save it for your shrink” in response to Jane’s self-pitying justifications for her decision. I was getting irritated with Jane’s “woe is me” justification story just before Braka said that.

*Melissa’s attackers wear the faces of our 37th and 42nd Presidents – Richard M. Nixon and Bill Clinton. They aren’t the first icons of American history featured in The Purge series (see below).

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Presidents Lincoln and Washington – along with Uncle Sam and Lady Liberty – appeared in The Purge: Anarchy (2014).

*Otis (Lance E. Nichols) has his Purge Night racket – what about Good Leader Tavis (Fiona Dourif) ? Does she pay for those periwinkle blue robes & lovely flowers with “donations” that pay for  delivery of Purge Night victims?

Next week, Episode Three addresses the “The Urge to Purge”.

Until then citizens,  “Just remember all the good The Purge does.”

The Purge airs Tuesdays on USA at 10/9c.

More official images, information, and other goodies can be found here.