11.22.63: Soldier Boy
March 30, 2016 2:35 AM - Season 1, Episode 7 - Subscribe

The end is near, and Jake is not up to the task. Sadie scrambles to pick up the pieces, but no one knows the mission as well as Jake. Kennedy and the assassin are on a collision path - but has Jake changed things enough in the past to alter the course of events? The days are counting down as 11.22.63 draws near.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich (6 comments total)
It's been interesting watching 11.22.63 in parallel with Better Call Saul. Not because the shows have anything in common, but because BCS sharply highlights how differently a show can feel when its writing is constrained by having to get from point A to point B... in this case, being adapted from an existing novel which itself is derived from an actual historical event . There are so many places in this series where the writing is driven by "We need to include these things that happened in the book but we can't use internal monologue and we've only got 8 episodes so how can we strip it down and fit it into the narrative" and not so much "What would these people realistically do in this scenario?" The A.V. Club's recap of this episode is pretty good.
posted by usonian at 7:37 AM on March 30, 2016

I am annoyed by the side plots so much because the premise of the show and novel are so good unto themselves and Jake's getting mixed up with other people just dilutes that. Plus I think that Sadie and Bill were pretty poorly-acted and one-dimensional. I am a Southerner though.

Speaking of accents, what is the DEAL with Lee Harvey's accent? I have tried looking for a historical reference for this — his mother's character has a pretty standard Southern/Texan accent. Am I supposed to believe that his time in Russia affected his voice that much? Did the real Lee Harvey speak like that? If so, why?
posted by Brittanie at 8:49 AM on March 30, 2016 [2 favorites]

Just read the AV Club recap and it's spot on. I also noticed that all the cars they're were running past were green.
posted by Brittanie at 8:56 AM on March 30, 2016

Did the real Lee Harvey speak like that?

Here's a short TV interview he did a few months before the assassination. There's also an extended radio interview from around the same time. I wouldn't say the actor is perfectly mimicking Oswald's speech, but there is something in the way he deliberately enunciates each word that captures some of the essence of his odd personality. The performance has really grown on me.

I thought this episode was a bit of a slog, especially as it's ostensibly setting the table for the finale. The yellow card man's monologue was a very effective scene, even though much of what he said was somewhat impenetrable to my ears. Looking forward to seeing how they wrap this up.
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:09 AM on March 30, 2016 [1 favorite]

I've been enjoying the show. I read the book and I felt it dragged alot. I think the show moves the story along a bit better. And goodness me, James Franco is a dream. I could stare at his sad I-love-you face for forever.

I feel like in the show, Sadie is less of an active participant. Maybe I'm remembering wrong, but in the book, didn't she take a bit more of an active role once Jake told her he was from the future?

Poor Bill! I know he was a character made up for the show but Jake just totally destroyed his life. Even if he wouldn't have killed himself, he was never going to be ok again. I wish I could have seen Jake struggle with that a bit more. Even if it is the past, Bill is still a person who deserved better. Jake seems to have no awareness of what he was asking from Bill and then had him committed when he stopped following orders.
posted by LizBoBiz at 6:04 AM on May 2, 2017

Also, what happens if Sadie does go to the future? Then she's stuck, right? She cannot go back to 1963 to replace herself there and she already exists in 1960. Jake can go back and forth because it's possible for him to actually go back to where he belongs, but she can't.
posted by LizBoBiz at 10:59 AM on May 2, 2017

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