Flesh and Blood: Turkey, pumpkin pie and murder

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— Courtesy of Hulu

Watch Your Ears, Sweetheart!

Flesh and Blood reminded me of the movie version The Shining in a few ways.

The home doesn’t have quite the baggage of the Overlook Hotel, but it is haunted by memories and talismans. The architecture doesn’t randomly shift, either. But Henry and Kimberly both physically create their own entrances and exits. One uses a bandsaw and a sledge hammer. The other uses their feet and fists. Hey, it’s all for the well being of the family.

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Henry is a Torrance boy, for sure. If I specified Jack or Danny, that would be a major spoiler. So, I’ll say he’s both Jack and Danny and explain myself.

Dermot Mulroney breathes life into Henry. There’s a physicality in everything he says. There are deep breaths that power his every word. Yet, Henry doesn’t bellow from his diaphragm. He takes all this built up power and speaks from the back of his throat. He has control, but the force of it all makes his voice quiver a bit. It’s like there’s a force raging inside of him. And that’s Jack Torrance in a nutshell. He has his family to worry about, a house to fix, and other things to attend too.

Henry is also cursed with this knowledge of how the world works and corrupts good people. It’s a burden that gets in the way of properly cooked turkey and the superior flavor of the last pumpkin pie in town. Knowledge is power. Henry is just afraid to use it in his own home. What would he unleash if he did? And that’s Danny Torrance in a nutshell.

Mulroney really adds texture to this character. You hate him when you should like him. You laugh with him when you should be afraid of him.

Kimberly is Wendy Torrance. She is hyper aware that she is trapped in a bad situation. There’s a maze of emotions and crawl spaces for her to navigate. This is one of Diana Silvers first big roles. She embodies a character that you can empathize with and root for at the same time. It’s quite a performance.

Kimberly is not a shrieking damsel in distress. But, if you look at Silvers’ eyes for a lot of the episode, you can see Kimberly wants to shriek because she is in distress. Silvers layers this with physical choices. When she sits, she’s often in a ball. When she moves, Kimberly freezes and walks slowly. Then she’ll suddenly put her head down and move with authority.

I felt the tension building. It felt claustrophobic.

Also, there are title cards for changes in time just like The Shining. We see THANKSGIVING. And BLACK FRIDAY. That was a nice touch.

You’re My Flesh and Blood

I’m not a parent. I like to think that I know how I’d feel if I was a daddy. The concept of “I’d do anything for my kiddo” is almost a given.

Henry has some ultra specific views on how to properly keep his daughter safe. We see a lot of TV parents shelter their kids. Henry is on board with the sheltering. But, he doesn’t want to keep Kimberly sheltered forever. After all, she’s his little girl. She’s perfect. First, he must adjust the environment for Kimberly in some permanent, shocking ways.

There will be one obvious way to consider this character when you watch Flesh and Blood. But for Henry, he’s just living up to the portrait of a good father that he’s painted for himself in his soul. There a lot of moments where I sympathized with him. That enhanced the creep level when you learn his true motivations.

Give Thanks

I’ve talked about all of these layers and textures and didn’t even get into the murder mystery!

I highly recommend Flesh and Blood. It makes you think about things in odd ways. There’s genuine suffering and triumph. Sure. There’s a little gore and this is a Thanksgiving movie. I dug it. But hey, I watch American Psycho every Thanksgiving. What can I say? I’m a horror fan. Oh. You are too? Well then you should totally stream Flesh and Blood.

Next. History of Horror: Eli Roth and The Demons Inside. dark

Are you excited for Flesh and Blood? Will you check it out this Friday? After two episodes, are you enjoying Into the Dark? Let’s discuss in the comments!