Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Salem, Season 3, Episode 9: Saturday Mourning

It’s time for everything to go horribly wrong, for me to be immensely annoyed by several characters and for me to generally yell 2nooooo, nooooooo, nooooooooooooooooooo!” over and over again.

Mary Sibley isn’t dead despite the whole blood Marburg curse thing and she is plagued by her baby devil’s voice. Upon hearing his voice tempting her, she crawls to the doorway to hell, draws a knife and is ready to stab ANYONE who comes near her or the door. They will open it over her dead body. Because she is Mary and she is not standing down.

Mary I made of iron

Unfortunately everyone else is made of stupid. Great big chunks of stupid welded together. They’re also made of EXCELLENT moral lessons being made by the WORST PEOPLE in the world

So, Cotton wakes up in the brothel, wanders around a bit, still drunk, pops in on John (more on him later) and runs into Glorianna. Who doesn’t remember him. Or, well, anyone but does remember being helped by the oh-so-nice Anne.

Cotton loses his temper and goes to confront Anne, being very physical and intimidating. She tries to lie her way about it over and over again. And it doesn’t work, except to get Cotton to break all morality by declaring lying worse than murder. He rambles on about how he thought she was a pure, wonderful innocent angel but now she’s just an evil ugly hag

She snaps. She has an epic, awesome rant about his hypocrisy. How he regularly got drunk, visited prostitutes then lived the lie of climbing up on the pulpit to praise god and be righteous. She calls out the whole horrendous Maddonna/Whore Innocent/witch, beauty/hag dichotomy he has going and generally just awesomely calls out the whole double standard and misogyny of the time and the people here.

And I would be cheering but this whole speech is being made by a woman literally trying to justify kidnapping, womb raiding and lobotomising another woman. Nothing she said is wrong by my gods, in the context can we not?! She is waving the flag of misogyny as some kind of excuse for why she viciously abused another, even more vulnerable and powerless woman?! Why couldn’t you have made this speech 3 episodes ago, Anne?!

She’s all set to kill Cotton but Sebastian intervenes and imprisons him instead at the behest of mummy dearest. Baroness Marburg has decided that the cure for her poor, heartbroken children (remember Anne is her daughter too) is incest. Both kids agree so it’s incest time with lots of incest kissing and we totally needed this storyline and I’m sure there’s a thought process that has Anne going “cotton has broken my heart so I’m going to make out with my brother” but I’m totally totally fine with Salem not walking me through this ‘kay thanks

In addition because her heart is all broken she’s going to help end the world because this is a sensible, mature way to deal with heart ache. Someone really needs to introduce Anne to a pint of icecream. We know this because she explains it to Mary – there’s a whole tag team going on of people explaining their motives to Mary for why they want to end the world

Sebastian is also in because A) mummy dearest and b) waaaaah you love John Alden not me. Seriously guys this is not a healthy way to deal with rejection

The third is Tituba. Yes, she’s put Baby Devil back together and why? Well she has an excellent speech about oppression and murder and theft and when Mary tries to agree – yes the Puritans are terrible – she ferociously objects. You can’t divide the colonists between “good” and “bad”. You can’t pretend the Puritans are the only problem. All white Europeans/English/colonisers are, arriving, taking land, enslaving and slaughtering. And then on top of that Mary pretends she UNDERSTANDS Tituba and share shares her oppression? Oh hell no

Again it’s an epic speech and, like Anne, not a false word is said. The constant attempt to say the Puritans are wrong to Tituba when all colonists are equally guilty is galling. And it’s epic that she’s calling it out… but she’s doing this while literally SUMMONING THE DEVIL. Is the devil going to be restricted to only colonial white Christians? Are there not zombie Native Americans around the town right now (hey remember them?! Because the show doesn’t). Like Anne we have a speech which is perfectly accurate but completely undermined by the context and actions of the speaker – it becomes less speaking a powerful, real, perfect truth and more about irrational destructive rage that is outright EVIL, literally as evil as it could possibly be.

Though at least she hasn’t found a relative to make out with I guess.

Oh this show. So much truth, delivered in the worst way at the worst moments  - it’s like taking perfect messages and thinking of the best ways to have them dismissed. Which has pretty much been the story of Mercy from the very beginning.

Speaking of. Mercy has one of her minions deliver a message that she has the Waif. Isaac shows up alone as instructed and then stays in Mercy’s clutches while the waif is released

Of course the Waif then beings the mob to the brothel to find Isaac. This was predictable and obvious yet Mercy is shocked, SHOCKED

That leaves John – he visits the serial killer/barber/surgeon for some doctoring and realises this very disturbing man is the one with the key to destroying everything. Except that he doesn’t know how to fix it. Nor does the serial killer doctor. Sebastian might – but Sebastian ain’t telling.