Last night’s episode of The Leftovers was easily the best of the season. I would even go so far as to say it’s the best of the series thus far, because of the brutal honesty and some pretty intriguing questions posed by both Erika and Nora.
No more beating around the bush for Erika, who finally speaks up about the ludicrous goings-on in Miracle when she snaps at the fundraiser meant to support the search for Evie and friends. But that’s a good thing for Erika to get it off her chest in front of everyone; she believes what they’re all too scared to admit: the girls departed. There’s no shame in calling out the lady who just so happened to be trying on her wedding dress the day of the Departure years ago, and now she wears it every single day under the impression that she saved her town. The guy who slaughters goats really pushed her to speak up, and thankfully, Erika manages to save at least one more innocent goat.
All along Nora’s been getting strange phone calls from blocked numbers and a visit from a scientist sent there for research. It just so happens a worker from the Department of Sudden Departures is also in town to question the families of the missing girls. Nora meets this guy and learns of a new theory being investigated to possibly explain the departures. “Lensing” makes sense in the context of this series with the mysterious disappearances but there’s so many more questions to be asked if it’s true. Okay, let’s say Nora did touch her husband and children the day 2% of the world’s population vanished. She would account for a mere theee people in the grand scheme of things. What makes her special, and how many more lenses are out there? If she’s truly responsible for Evie, then how do you explain Evie’s friends too? Hopefully, we get to see more of those scientists and their very intriguing findings. Call me crazy but I’m pretty sure the voice on the phone calling Nora was Sonya Walger, the actress best known as Penny from Lost.
Everything in this episode boiled down to the questionnaire scene between Nora and Erika. These women have a lot in common, which is more and more evident after Erika stormed out of the fundraiser. Now Nora feels she can be more honest with her neighbor because she finally admitted to believing her daughter departed. Once Erika turned the tables on Nora and flat out asked if her children departed or died, I wanted to just hug both of them. Oh my gosh, that was so tense but so real. Everyone tiptoes around the Sudden Departure day like it was special, but maybe it wasn’t! People have been dying for as long as there’s been life on this earth, so why do we need to label this mysterious worldwide phenomenon as anything more significant than death? The grieving process remains the same for those left behind. It was just crazy to see a character finally calling it like she sees it. It shouldn’t be suspicious of any government bureau or scientist to question why someone couldn’t remember the last thing a loved one said to you the last time you saw them alive because that’s just life. No one expects their lives to be cut short unexpectedly, so it’s impossible to embrace every little interaction as if it could be your last.
In between the Nora and Erika scenes that could have been an episode all their own, we also got to witness Kevin’s insanity from Nora’s point of view. She overheard him cursing at himself, then he evidently got so distracted by Patti that he forgot the baby outside the house. All these little things are adding up, and he feels he needs to come clean to Nora about what’s been going on. As Patti tells him, it’s a mistake in revealing all this to Nora, but it looks like it’ll make for another wild episode next week.
What did you think of “Lens”?
[Photo credit: Ryan Green/HBO]