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Movies & TV

Four Things about ‘The Outsider’ – Episode 4

More plot, more context, and more suspense that makes everyone watching want to break into HBO HQ and air every episode now so we can binge the damn thing. Here are my four things for the week:

1. The killer’s pattern has been set

If it wasn’t obvious to viewers before, the plot of episode four confirmed some patterns in The Entity’s behavior. Murders children, requires meat and blood for sustenance, but it also leaves a path of destruction in its wake, the grief of a dead child consuming those around it. Now that the currently “infected” Jack Hoskins has been informed of Tamika’s baby’s party, where this path leads is clear. The only question is can our team of detectives stop the inevitable baby murder in time…

2. Okay, so who could beat up whom in this tiny Georgia town?

There have been a couple on-screen tussles in The Outsider so far, including one at the restaurant everyone in town goes to on the weekend. In this case, Glory’s lawyer Howard is easily shoved back by a large, rude, and threatening man, who is immediately subdued by Ralph, who’s at the restaurant with his wife (like I said, this restaurant is pretty popular). It reminded me of a question I had from last week: What are the fist fight power rankings in this town? I think it’s fairly simple…

    1. Ralph Anderson – Trained cop, filled with anger from son’s death, always threatening to destroy people.
    2. Jack Hoskins – Also a trained cop, bulkier than Ralph, but often a careless drunk (I don’t know if being “infected”/”possessed” makes him stronger or weaker).
    3. Big dude in the restaurant – Absolute unit who subdues Howard with a push.
    4. Alec Pelley – We haven’t talked about this guy yet. He’s the bulky PI Howard employs to prove Terry’s innocence. Probably a decent fighter. He might not live in the town, but will count him since he’s in the mix of the plot.
    5. Holly Gibney – We don’t know whether she’s trained in self-defense, but she takes pepper spray like a champ and she could probably blow someone up with her mind (more on that later…)
    6. Frankie Peterson’s Mom with a baseball bat – Yes she dies of a heart attack in the first episode, but while alive she looked like she could do some damage with a weapon.
    7. Probably 8-10 other people in the town
    8. Howard Salomon – Old, lawyer, gets immediately bodied the second he stands up in the restaurant to confront the big dude. Apologies to actor Bill Camp.

The Outsider Coco

3. No show has made Googling things look scarier

In the show’s final scene, shortly after we’re told the mythology of El Cuco/Baba Yaga/The Boogeyman, we find Holly doing research while in the tub, casually browsing Google Images of different depictions of our killer in question. You know, just like you would when you’re trying to relax with a bath. Between the close up camera angles, tense music, and editing, the show did a phenomenal job of taking something from everyday life and making it the most tense portion of the episode.

4. The episode cliffhanger takes us one step closer to the paranormal

For those not indoctrinated into the Church of Sci-Fi Theory, the end of the episode where Holly sinks into the tub may be perceived as an unimportant ending. I, however, see this to be a tell of where we’re going next, potentially a scene on the astral plane. We know that Holly has a unique mind from the childhood flashbacks we’re shown, and she’s open to understanding the unexplainable. Maybe that openness comes from having some unexplainable traits of her own? My thought is she has some sort of mental acuity tied to telepathy or other telekinetic abilities, and she can enhance them through sensory deprivation. This would be similar to how to Eleven can communicate between the human dimension and The Upside Down in Stranger Things. If we don’t get some further explanation early on in Episode 5, I’ll be quite disappointed my theory doesn’t follow through.

My own theories are slowly forming, and I’d love to hear yours (IF you haven’t read the book)! You can reach me on Twitter or Instagram at @AndrewMackens. Until next week, make sure to go to bed on time!

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