Sharp Objects: Falling
August 21, 2018 11:46 AM - Season 1, Episode 7 - Subscribe

Camille crosses a line in her investigation of the prime suspect; Richard coaxes Jackie to offer up info about Marian Crellin's death; Adora takes pains to keep an ailing Amma under her roof and in her care.

‘Sharp Objects’ is “Falling” Toward an Inevitable Conclusion (Meredith Borders for slashfilm)
In the penultimate episode of HBO’s Sharp Objects, it feels like we’ve learned everything we need to learn about Wind Gap’s murders and Camille Preaker’s tragic history. The show has telegraphed Adora’s toxic relationship with the girls in her life, and reminded us every week that we shouldn’t count out any of Wind Gap’s vicious women when making our lists of Ann and Natalie’s potential killers. But we still have an episode to go, and confrontations still need to be made. “She did it again, and I need to take care of it,” Camille sobs to Curry at the end of “Falling” – because Camille always was the only person who could stand up to Adora Crellin.
All of the Hidden Words You Missed in Sharp Objects (Kathryn VanArendonk for Vulture, with one last set of screencaps left!)

Episode soundtrack on Tunefind; but all you need to know is it ends with "Down in the Willow Garden," a traditional Appalachian murder ballad.
posted by filthy light thief (6 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I skipped the extended review round-up, because I just wanted to say ... fook.

Yeah, it should have been obvious, but I'm often happy to float along with a show, even when it's a grim one like this.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:47 AM on August 21, 2018

I was a little let down by this episode, as I'd already considered the Munchausen's premise. That said, JFC who can do that? To their own children?!

And it also felt a little out of left field WRT Amma - we've had little indication she was anything other than a healthy wild child whose only physical harm was self-inflicted. But perhaps we were in a a long "remission" from Adora's disease. (Ugh, and recall that the feeding tube might've been a conduit for Adora to pour poison directly in. Ugh.)

Patricia Clarkson swaying to music as she mixed the Munchause cocktail runs a chill up my neck just remembering it.

So, as of this episode we feel really sorry for Amma, although a little voice asks me - was she exaggerating her illness? Maybe she didnt even swallow all the med? And what is up with those images from the finale preview? Another damn chilling sight.

What did you think of Amma's casual glance at the crime scene photos? Did you notice the significant looks by the girls in her posse as they skated by The Alley? (BTW that never made sense to me. How was that body there in the middle of the day, and no one saw it until the woman who screamed?)

Adora bit baby Amma. Dead Natalie had her teeth yanked out. Ashley has an ear bite, and told Camille to: "Ask your mother about it."

Did the sheriff's "Sick" line at the end mean he was just connecting the dots about Adora and Amma. Or did he know about Adora longtime?

Camille relates to (broken) teens - Amma, Alice (was that the girl in rehab?), now John Keene. Everyone's MMV on her hooking up with John. But Amy's "You're reading me" and the verbal attack by Richard later were both devastating bits of acting.

I've speculated about 97 other theories, but I would luv it to be some twist even I haven't conjured. I'll be most disappointed if this is some "it's all an hallucintion Camille is having." But -

1. Something feels off about that editor and his companion. (E.g. are they really her therapists trying to reach through a psychic break?)
2. A couple internet comments elsewhere point out that Amma is an anagram for mama. Hmn.

If it's not that, my money is on the other two girls' murder being something like each was murdered by a different person(s) for separate reasons.
posted by NorthernLite at 11:37 AM on August 22, 2018

The Lazy Trope of the Unethical Female Journalist -- With Camille Preaker, Zoe Barnes, and Rory Gilmore, Hollywood’s depictions of women reporters have never been further from reality. (Sophie Gilbert for The Atlantic, Aug. 20, 2018)

‘The Music Is All About Surviving’: Inside the Sonic World of Sharp Objects -- Susan Jacobs, the music supervisor of the HBO series, explains why Led Zeppelin became the protagonist’s voice of escape. (Spencer Kornhaber for The Atlantic, Aug. 13, 2018)
posted by filthy light thief at 2:54 PM on August 22, 2018 [1 favorite]

So the hook up with John, the thing that really bothered me was the way it was edited. As soon as they get to the room, there's a cut to the police vehicles and the dispatch saying that he'd been spotted at the motel. Then the cut to the sex scene, so the whole time I'm so tense waiting for the police to show up but no...they have time to complete the act and even fall asleep for a little bit. It was unnecessary tension added to a scene that was powerful enough on its own.

As for the sex itself, while I'm disappointed in Camille for crossing some ethical boundaries, I'm more disappointed that she didn't just own that she was a bad person when talking about it with the city cop guy. She has no problem telling anyone who thinks otherwise that she's a not a good person in every other context, whether or not its actually true. I wished she would have just owned it in that moment. I can't tell whats more logical for her character though, to own it or to deny it when it comes to actual bad deeds.
posted by LizBoBiz at 4:55 AM on August 23, 2018 [1 favorite]

Did the sheriff's "Sick" line at the end mean he was just connecting the dots about Adora and Amma. Or did he know about Adora longtime?

I think he had suspicions, but not enough to act, particularly given that she's the matriarch of the major industry in town. Just like the nurses and doctors who welcomed Adora and her baked goods, and rejected inquiries into Marian's sicknesses, and the the coroner allowing a quick cremation.

An interesting mirror or two: the "coziness" of the sheriff and Adora, and Kansas City with Camille; and Adora with "the lost girls. The ones everybody else gave up on. She just kept coming back for more," similar in ways to Camille with John Keene in this episode, pushing him to really open up.

And it was John's comments that made me think Adora is behind the murders, at least in part. Between the rest of that quote about Adora ("Natalie fought her and fought her like physically." - Camille: "Did she win?" - John "Yeah.
She had to get stitches one time. That was from Ann, though, not from Natalie but she, uh she never gave up. Yeah, like she was gonna solve them."), and "Her fingernails were painted When they found her, someone someone painted her fingernails. Natalie would never do that." And then there's his earlier "story" about the murders -- "Pull the pig teeth out so they can't bite you."

So my theory is that Adora was trying to "fix" the "lost girls," make them proper and pretty, probably dosing them, either when they were "sick," or to simply sedate them so she could clean and dress them like pretty little dolls. Or maybe Amma convinced them that getting drunk was fine because "You know what my favorite part about getting wasted is? Mama takes care of me after."

Except Ann Nash was "found last August, strangled with a clothes line and dumped in Falls Creek." Maybe Adora tried to control Ann, she fought back again, Adora flipped out over her lost control, and acted rashly. But pulling teeth is a slow process, which is means it's not a rash decision.

OK, I'm not so sure now... we'll see in a few days.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:04 PM on August 23, 2018

Sophie Gilbert seems to have missed out on the story of Ali Watkins.
I think this series has dragged out the episodes, while the book was far more concise and compelling.
posted by Ideefixe at 10:46 PM on August 23, 2018

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