Frankly, after the new Westworld Season 3 trailer dropped in the middle of last week, I can confidently say I’m more hyped for that than I ever was for The Outsider, even after the two-episode premier. As I mentioned last week, this story will be an open-and-shut limited series, so we can focus our attention elsewhere very soon. At least this series’ 8th episode gave us a little something more to chew on (pun intended 😊).
1. Ralph and Holly are building some much needed rapport
We had a nice moment when our team of detectives were driving to Tennessee and Ralph tells a story about his late mother that seems to have supernatural ties, and Holly without question chalks it up to coincidence. It’s a bit of a disarming moment for Ralph in particular, who is constantly questioning Holly’s investigative theories/methods; he was not expecting her to respond with such simplicity and rationality. The bonds they built along this road trip will hopefully go a long way in their ability to cooperate while catching the Boogeyman.
2. Would it make more sense for the Boogeyman to transform into dogs in order to feed?
Thanks to ESPN writer Mine Kimes, we have prime Twitter content of what a Boogeydog could look like, but would this actually be a more effective transition for the Entity? Dog teeth would be better for tearing flesh, and you could easily lure in humans with your cuteness. However, it might be hard to transform from dog to dog pending the breed, plus if we assume the Boogeyman is at least “Human-like,” then he’s probably needs to transform into other humans. Feeding off grief is easier when dealing with Humans as well, as I assume most dogs are happy 95% of the time.
3. Seeing and hearing more of the Boogeyman is not a big enough payoff this far into the series…
…and it will be difficult for the payoff to really be worth the investment when we most likely won’t see the Boogeyman’s true form until the final episode for no more than a few minutes. I’ve been getting Cloverfield vibes from the monster reveal for a bit now, and it sucks because the anticipation vs. payoff formula is off.
In the 2008 monster movie Cloverfield, the audience is given small glimpses of the monster throughout, but we don’t get a true look at the “villain” of the film until the final few minutes. It makes sense in the context of the movie, (everything is presented as being filmed from a single camcorder/perspective) but for an audience member you get two minutes of, “Oh, that’s the monster. Cool,” before the story is over. It’s my worry that The Outsider follows a similar formula, and we’ll be wanting more Boogeyman monster footage by the end of the series.
4. Will we get a giant fight scene with the Boogeyman?
If we’re going to get some series finale payoff of what the Boogeyman looks like, it better involve a knock-down, drag-out fight between the monster and half the town. The preview for the next episode made it look like 25-50 men were starting to get involved with the Boogey-manhunt. We need some on-camera evidence of this monster’s strength to raise the stakes going into the series finale. If we’re just chasing down a wounded animal, what’s the point?
I’ll be reluctantly glued to the screen the next two weeks to see how HBO and the showrunners wrap this up. Can they redeem the pacing and lack of comprehensive character development? Only time will tell…