Evil: October 31
October 24, 2019 8:25 PM - Season 1, Episode 5 - Subscribe

On Halloween night, Kristen and David are sent to assess an exorcism, but once the pair analyzes the situation, they are at odds while trying to determine whether it is a demonic possession or severe mental illness. Also, Ben goes on reality show "Demon Hunters" as a debunker; Sheryl has an interesting date; and the girls hear a ghost story.
posted by oh yeah! (14 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
It’s Halloween night and our investigation takes us to Jersey to one of the most haunted strip clubs in Jersey City.

[chef's kiss]
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:57 AM on October 25, 2019 [3 favorites]

Did everybody give up on this show? Wouldn't blame you...

I liked the previous one, episode 4. This one, not so much. My mind wandered. I kept thinking: I know she's your mother, but why would you leave your four (always) misbehaving, difficult to control girls alone with her? Four kids is a lot! Plus three neighbor kids? Oh no, you call off the party and deal with the complaints from your girls in the morning.

Babysitting 7 girls under 10 and you close your door and drink wine? I'd fire your ass! Yes I know it's her mother, doing a favor. Still -- poor choices all around.

And if an exorcism can't take my mind off mundane stuff like that (I am not even a Mom!) you know they are losing me.

I did enjoy the date/pickup situation. I know that will cause havoc but it made me laugh. Was it supposed to? I dunno.

I think I will go back to Netflix. Not a hard no, but it really has to get better.
posted by alwayson_slightlyoff at 9:38 PM on October 25, 2019

I did like that Michael Emerson got to actually do something this episode aside from just sit around and taunt David. I don't know if it's supposed to make the viewer laugh but at this point anything that entertains, I'll take.

I think the storyline with the little girl needed an entire episode because it's a pretty disturbing take. You have a little abused girl who becomes the emissary of evil. Not the parents, THE VICTIM. Who then reaches out to a group of a little girls who are under the care of a neglectful adult. And encourages them to embrace their rage/hatred of their mother who has left them with this person. Kristen's intent to help David contributes to putting her children at risk (AGAIN).

I'm not sure if that was the intent of the writers or if this is just an unintentional side effect of sloppy writing.
posted by miss-lapin at 10:17 PM on October 26, 2019

Not!Brenda was terrifying, especially because there was something so appealing about her. Of course you don't WANT to hear the rest of the story, go into the basement, talk about killing your mother, crawl into the hole, get buried in the grave, see under the mask. But...that's also what Halloween is for, right? Not!Brenda kept asking and asking, "do you want to see something REALLY scary?" and of course you should answer no -- but in the end you have to answer yes. You have to try and glimpse through that veil. Climb Everest and face that void. Human nature.

And I loved her chortle at the end.

You have a little abused girl who becomes the emissary of evil. Not the parents, THE VICTIM.

Her parents made her a monster, and then she came to embrace and even enjoy being one. A dark story but a reasonable one, I think.

Of course, it could just be lies anyhow.
posted by rue72 at 11:19 PM on October 26, 2019 [4 favorites]

"I'm not sure if that was the intent of the writers or if this is just an unintentional side effect of sloppy writing."

No, in this case I think it was deliberate.

I liked this episode almost as much as last week's. I don't know what it is what that TV Fanatic recapper just hating any of the girls' plots and finding them so annoying. They're four young girls! As I mentioned previously, I have five similarly-aged grand-step-niece siblings who are basically just as loud and unruly. My mother, who dotes on these adorable great-grandaughters of hers, sometimes gives their parents a little side-eye for not supervising each of them every moment ... but I think that's not possible. Their parents are pretty chill, which I think is probably the only way to stay sane. So I'm not too down on Kristen or her mother. The grandmother expects the older two girls to be pretty responsible for the younger two. I mean, yeah, she should be keeping a closer eye on them. On the other hand, she didn't exactly sign up for this. I'm pretty annoyed at the absent father.

It seemed like with the little girl they maybe went into the paranormal -- but I think it's still ambiguous and that Emerson's character could be orchestrating all of this. The girl who was asked to go into the grave was, I think, the one with the heart defect. And I find the fact that Emerson's character (I can't ever remember his name) appealed to the grandmother with the appeal of boundary violation and not being "nice" is very interesting given how "nice" Kristen is and how that's even an ethos she explicitly teaches her daughters.

I think I enjoy the show when it's both willing to be goofy (like the reality show stuff) but then switch into things like a little girl being coerced by peer pressure to climb down into an open grave.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 11:32 PM on October 26, 2019 [1 favorite]

His name is Leland Townsend.
posted by miss-lapin at 12:05 AM on October 27, 2019

I don't know what it is what that TV Fanatic recapper just hating any of the girls' plots and finding them so annoying.

Yeah, and I'm baffled by the TV Fanatic recapper's hate-on for episode 4 being so strong that they felt compelled to slam it again in this one, but I'm not seeing any other recap sites covering the show, so I figure it's still worth a link for the plot summary and screenshots even if their analysis is questionable.
posted by oh yeah! at 4:58 AM on October 27, 2019

As I watched the episode, I felt certain that "Brenda" was a demon -- not an abused child with a terrible backstory. Another "Rose" sent perhaps by Townsend to threaten Kristen's family, inject terror, maybe even hurt the girls?

And the way she skipped down the road, taking off her mask, happy to frighten those random boys, said "demon" to me as well. It never occurred to me to feel pity for her -- she was there to wreak havoc at another's behest. Just a player in the game.
posted by alwayson_slightlyoff at 6:28 PM on October 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

In the cemetery "Brenda" tells the story of a child whose face is terribly burned by her parents, so much so it terrifies others. So it may be a demon, but it seemed to me that she's simply telling her own story and it's confirmed by the trick or treaters being terrified of her face.

I tend to think a real story of abuse is far more frightening than a demon.
posted by miss-lapin at 6:50 PM on October 27, 2019

In a strange twist of fate, Evil is filming an episode of s 2 on my street.
posted by miss-lapin at 4:51 PM on November 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

I think I'm dropping out of this one. Not a bad show, but I'm more excited about some of the stuff starting to debut or return around now and I need to make room in my schedule.

I'm assuming the drop-off in posts means others feel the same.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 6:56 AM on November 15, 2019

I’m still watching - knowing it’s only a 13-episode season it doesn’t feel like too much of a time commitment. But I don’t know that I have anything to say about the latest episode(s?) that I haven’t said in a previous thread, and I tend not to want to post threads for shows without a recap link or two, and I don’t think anyone is covering Evil regularly anymore. I’ll no doubt post one for the season finale, though.
posted by oh yeah! at 8:49 AM on November 15, 2019 [1 favorite]

I'm still watching too.
posted by miss-lapin at 2:10 PM on November 19, 2019

For what it's worth, they seem to have eventually figured out whether they want to try to walk the line in an X-Files sort of way (is it supernatural? is it ordinary psychosis?) and it's definitely less frustrating now. Either that or they have enough internal backstory to work with that the audience is familiar with that they don't _need_ to constantly tiptoe around that line any more?

It seems to have settled down in the latter half of the season, anyway.
posted by Kyol at 8:18 AM on January 21, 2020

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