Sunday, December 13, 2020

REVIEW: 'The Wilds' - Dot's Actions in Pursuit of Shelter Reveal Exhaustion and Potential Duplicity in 'Day Three'

Amazon's The Wilds - Episode 1.03 "Day Three"

Leah, Rachel and Nora swim out to the plane wreckage and return with a crucial find. Fellow Texans Dot and Shelby search for a cave that might provide better shelter, but their contentious relationship makes matters difficult. Flashbacks reveal heart-wrenching secrets about Dot's home life.

In 2019, the television industry aired 532 scripted shows across numerous outlets. The way people consume content now is different than it used to be. It happens according to one's own schedule. As such, it's less necessary to provide ample coverage of each episode in any given season from a show. Moreover, it is simply impossible to watch everything. As such, this site provides 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 Amazon's The Wilds.

"Day Three" was written by Daniel Paige and directed by John Polson

Is Dot the secret mole operating amongst the castaways? The final moment would suggest so. It was previously stated that Jeanette wasn't the only person on the island reporting back to Gretchen's team. Someone else should be looked at with suspicion. Revealing who that is in the third episode seems a tad early. However, it may simply be one character detail to note just how torn Dot is in her life. Her father wanted her to experience the world. He didn't want her tied to him for the foreseeable future. He didn't want to be the reason she was stuck in their small Texas town. He suggested this retreat not because of some psychological condition that needed to be addressed. He simply saw the benefit of her getting some rest and relaxation in Hawaii. It was an incredible deal. One that she is skeptical of accepting when Gretchen presents it to her. She still got on the plane and has landed on the island though. In her private moments, it's clear that she is fighting for her freedom. However, Shelby helps her experience the beauty of the world while they are still trapped on the island. It's a simple moment. She gets to see the majestic beauty of the sunset. She never had the time to do that because she was always so worried about taking care of her father. She did whatever it took to provide him the best care. In the end, it wasn't enough. She still faces an uncertain future. She did everything for him. He was embarrassed about that. He didn't want to rob her of the life she deserved living. She didn't have much personal agency outside of that responsibility though. She was invisible at school. That's how she wanted it to be. She provided a service. It was beneficial to her. It wasn't fulfilling. She tried giving her father everything to keep living. He didn't want to suffer any longer though. This retreat presented as a blessing for her. It was a fresh start. A new way to experience life. It has these strings attached to it. She sees that clearly. However, she also recognizes that she has been tired for so long. Dr. Faber and Agent Young see that through the context of what the girls had to endure on the island. In reality, Dot was fighting for her survival long before this event happened. She gave all of her energy to her father. That relationship was important to her. She only gets brief moments of proper mourning as well. The sunset helps in that regard. As such, it's a blessing that Shelby has given to her. The bonds between the girls are growing more genuine. And yet, tensions still exist among them. This is all seen as some twisted psychological experiment that Gretchen is running to prove her radical methods are justified. She was apparently admonished for suggesting such precarious forms of treatment. She wants to prove her colleagues wrong. Their sympathy is not appreciated. It's all an ego driven thing for her. She has the resources to make this happen. It doesn't matter that she no longer has the support of an organization that once wanted her. She still has influence. That just means these young girls are forced to endure all of this suffering. The future shows just how tragic this experience will be for many of them. Dot finds a way to have some fun in the aftermath. It was still a grueling emotional experience for her. She saves Shelby when she is attacked by a rattlesnake. They grow closer. But these bonds are incredibly fragile as well. Rachel has learned to lean on her sister once more. And yet, she is frustrated and essentially attacks Leah when she is no longer capable of exerting herself at the same pace. It's horrifying. Leah is terrified of what Rachel is willing to do to succeed in her goals. It's a tense moment out in the water. It's still a success though. They retrieve the black box. That shares a version of their story where the plane goes down and they are all lucky to still be alive. That's a fabrication though. Gretchen is happy with the progress they are making. She admires their strength and resilience. She can't project how all of them will react though. That places them in even more danger. No one can truly be in control. They succeed in finding shelter. That's something they absolutely needed to do. And yet, it's just as vital to see the backstories of these girls to understand the lives they've come from and how that carries through their actions as they try to survive. Their rescue doesn't fix everything. The time on the island may not make them stronger. It's just more chaos. That is a crushing weight to bear. And now, Dot may have some more responsibility as she met with Gretchen before all of this happened.