Friday, December 6, 2019

REVIEW: 'Reprisal' - Doris Spots a Potential Crew to Help Her While the Brawlers and Ghouls Face Off in 'A Flintlock & A Hound'

Hulu's Reprisal - Episode 1.02 "A Flintlock & A Hound"

Ethan learns about The Brawlers' place when they face off against a rival gang. Doris navigates the obstacles of finding a crew. Joel tries to figure out why the Ghouls went to such lengths. Meredith's secret enterprise has an unexpected result.

In 2018, there were 495 scripted shows airing amongst the linear channels and streaming services. The way people are consuming content now is so different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, there is less necessity to provide ample coverage of each specific episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site is making the move to shorter episodic reviews in order to cover as many shows as possible. With all of that being said, here are my thoughts on the next episode of Hulu's Reprisal.

"A Flintlock & A Hound" was written by Josh Corbin and directed by Jonathan Van Tulleken

This show is conditioning the audience into believing that nothing is ever what it appears to be. There is always something more going on. A secret motivation that helps explain who a person truly is. This is seen literally when Doris and Witt meet a potential gun for hire at a local bowling alley only for it to be revealed as running an illegal gambling operation in the backroom. It's a little bit more complicated when it comes to the individual characters though. Everyone assumes that Doris married Thomas for the money she would get after he died. And yet, she rejects that notion and claims that she genuinely loved him. He offered her peace and stability during a time when she needed to reinvent herself. She may even believe some of the things she says in order to lure the world into going along with her plans. She may be delusional in that way. She confirms to Molly that she doesn't really feel anything after killing Colin. She has crafted this whole narrative that may eventually see Big Graham go on trial for murder. That's unlikely though because he knows he's being framed and can track down these fugitives targeting him for some reason. Doris may have a genuine connection to the restaurant. However, she may be more passionate about her quest for revenge against her brother Burt. He is the man who betrayed her. She will hurt as many people along the way in order to achieve this goal. When she is inspired by danger, she walks right into it hoping to cultivate it for her own purposes. She's not scared when the bowling alley is being robbed. She instead believes she has found her crew to pull off this job. Sure, Witt knows exactly what she's hoping to achieve with this mission. It's not simply trying to rob one of the most notorious gangs in the south. It's actually about killing its leaders and everyone who has wronged her. She believes she has put a plan into motion that will help her in the long run. However, Ethan is completely confused and terrified by his circumstances. He certainly has an inner rage that he let out when he felt protective over someone. He feels indebted to Doris in a way. And yet, she is controlling him to advance her own goals. She projects having a man on the inside even though that may not be helpful. He can provide information to her. She values that. She also just has a lot going on. Some of it may pay off. Some of it may just be useless complications to ensure that this journey towards revenge doesn't go according to plan for her. She doesn't trust easily. She may not even have a person she can be her genuine self with. That's tragic and unfortunate. It's an engaging character story though. One that Abigail Spencer plays beautiful. She is a woman who has to remain in control even though she may not think things through in the most meaningful and strategic way. It's simply convenient to bring Molly on the road with her. She could end up as a collateral damage in the end. Doris may be fine with that. She may hold the same view towards Ethan. This episode starts with two gangs facing off expecting a truce to be revoked and war to start once more. That doesn't happen. The episode eventually ends on a gunfight. That's what excites Doris. However, the Banished Brawlers are shifting into a new era of existence. One in which Burt is the omnipresent figure often talked about but rarely involved with the operations. Bash believes he no longer has purpose in the same way that was obvious when a war was being fought. That is a relatable impulse. He still flexes his strength every once in awhile in order to intimidate. He is effective at that. His allies just may not have the conviction to follow through on those threats. If people are aware of that, then they can exploit the situation to their benefit. This is a changing environment and one that may see power changes if those on top aren't too careful. But again, everyone needs to have some personal awareness of the damage their actions may cause. Otherwise, the action would just be Meredith contributing to a man's death for no good reason whatsoever.