I care about and am invested in Montrose, even though he doesn’t appear on screen. Matter of fact, the sole exception to the episode's otherwise period-appropriate soundtrack is an appearance by Tierra Whack's 2019 single "Clones" while Atticus walks through his neighborhood in an earlier scene. He was also, crucially, an author and poet in the then-nascent subgenre of “weird fiction” up until his death in 1937. Lovecraft Country’s first episode is a love letter to stories and storytelling, and the importance of meaningful representation. Leti is a free-spirit who doesn’t plant roots, so it comes as no surprise that she would randomly decide to join Tic and Uncle George on their trip. Don’t be caught out after dark. Once Tic, Leti, and Uncle George set off, we see them pass through town after town. Tic helps the woman with her bags and they walk. As for the block party, there's laughter and singing, pouring fire hydrants and weightless smiles. The action sequences in “Sundown” are as intense as its moments of poignance. The block party scene at the one-third mark of the episode is a perfect example of all these elements locking into place. By far one of the stand-out moments, if not the stand out moment of the first episode of Lovecraft Country is the cross-country montage of Atticus, George, and Leti traveling through the heart of the Midwest, narrated by a sobering excerpt of James Baldwin’s opening statement during his historic 1965 debate with conservative commentator William F. Buckley Jr. “It would seem to me the proposition before the House, and I would put it that way, is the American Dream at the expense of the American Negro, or the American Dream is at the expense of the American Negro, is a question hideously loaded, and then one’s response to that question – one’s reaction to that question – has to depend on effect and, in effect, where you find yourself in the world, what your sense of reality is, what your system of reality is. A Korean War vet and avid science-fiction buff, Atticus knows all too well the pain of loving something that doesn’t love you back, and the value of literary escapism: “I love that the heroes get to go on adventures in other worlds. “Stories are like people,” says Atticus “Tic” Turner, the protagonist of Lovecraft Country as he walks alongside a fellow traveler down a lonely road on the way to Chicago. It keeps one from doing their work, or simply living one’s life, by constantly having to assert the fundamental worth and truth of one's existence. In the case of Lovecraft Country, by reconfiguring the tropes and narrative structure of Lovecraftian horror fiction around a subject — a black man in mid-20th century America and his extended circle of family and friends — who would otherwise be rendered either peripheral or monstrous by Lovecraft’s own hand. We know he, like Tic and George, is well-read. This review contains spoilers for Season 1, episode 1 of HBO's Lovecraft Country, "Sundown." The first episode, "Sundown," has a lot going for it, particularly when it comes to the show's overall score, music choices, and cinematography. They survive the night and stumble bloody and exhausted into Ardham, and the large manor that fronts the estate. An unsurprisingly comfortable fit, given that the book was originally conceived as a television pitch. This Lovecraft Country review contains spoilers. The first episode, "Sundown," has a lot going for it, particularly when it comes to the show's overall score, music choices, and cinematography. The block party scene at the one-third mark of the episode is a perfect example of all these elements locking into place. What begins as a straightforward black and white scene of Tic in the trenches morphs into a colorful panorama of the fantastical, a smorgasbord of sci-fi hors d’oeuvres. A fact that is reiterated later in the episode. From flying saucers and laser-shooting alien tripods, eldritch horrors and a lithe, bikini-clad Dejah Thoris, the show wears its unabashed love of genre fiction tropes proudly on its sleeve. Tic reads A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs as they wait for help, which makes sense of some of his dream imagery. Tic, Leti, and Uncle George are taken into the woods and forced to the ground, with the deputies’ shotguns aimed directly at them. This review contains spoilers for Season 1, episode 1 of HBO's Lovecraft Country, "Sundown." Some of the things he’s said and written I can’t even bear to quote here in good conscience. We know he drinks heavily, that he was abused as a kid and abused Tic in turn. This Lovecraft Country review contains spoilers.. Lovecraft Country Season 1, Episode 1. As the bus crosses yet another bridge named after a dead racist, Tic flips the bridge the bird, a final fuck you to the Jim Crow South. Something notable about Diana is that, in the novel, the character was originally portrayed as a 12-year old boy named Horace. There isn’t a county line that racists stay behind, that once you cross, you’re safe. Lovecraft Country follows Atticus Freeman as he meets up with his friend Letitia and his Uncle George to embark on a road trip across 1950s Jim Crow America in search of his missing father. With mere minutes until sundown, Tic n’em have to drive out of the county, fast enough to beat the setting sun but not so fast they get pulled over for speeding. Defy insurmountable odds. George’s wife Hippolyta, played by Aunjanue Ellis, is a strong matriarchal figure with palpable ambitions for something more than just her role as a housewife, and Atticus’ little cousin Diana, played by Jada Harris, is precocious and creative. Showrunner Misha Green’s adaptation takes the foundational elements of Ruff's novel and amends them confidently into the space of an hour-long serialized horror-drama. She loves art, books, film, games, music, television, and writing. It's an unambiguous portrait of Black joy, a ray of communal celebration and happiness that stands in stark contrast to the darkness that's soon to follow. Defeat the monster, save the day. Before the monsters in uniform can pull the trigger, they’re beset upon by many-eyed, tentacled beasts who dismember a deputy in a single bite. Matter of fact, the sole exception to the episode's otherwise period-appropriate soundtrack is an appearance by Tierra Whack's 2019 single "Clones" while Atticus walks through his neighborhood in an earlier scene. They regroup at Leti’s brother’s and receive his intel on the town of Ardham, including a dossier on the county’s top kkkop. Lovecraft Country’s premiere is a promising (if shallow) descent into the dark heart of American horror. George’s wife Hippolyta, played by Aunjanue Ellis, is a strong matriarchal figure with palpable ambitions for something more than just her role as a housewife, and Atticus’ little cousin Diana, played by Jada Harris, is precocious and creative. How then does one reconcile the dichotomy of Lovecraft’s reprehensible beliefs and his immense posthumous impact on the shape of popular fiction? The difference between the two is that although Lovecraft’s creations are unfathomable by nature, the spectre of racism itself is all too knowable and present; you can’t conceal its rot with shoddily tiled floors or white-washed walls. The difference between the two is that although Lovecraft’s creations are unfathomable by nature, the spectre of racism itself is all too knowable and present; you can’t conceal its rot with shoddily tiled floors or white-washed walls. In its first few minutes, “Sundown” tells us a lot about the world our characters occupy, and their place within it.
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