Summary: Nora goes to Kevin's house for dinner and Jill asks her about her gun, but finds that Nora doesn't have it. Jill finds Nora's gun in her house the next day. Jill and Aimee fight and Aimee leaves. Jill decides to join the GR. Patti is organizing a plan for the GR involving Loved Ones dolls for Memorial Day which is the next day. Meg lets her anger get the best of her and she attacks Matt. Kevin blacks out and wakes up with Patti tied up in a cabin; he abducted her. He is encouraged to kill her by the mystery man, Dean who is also there. Kevin frees Patti but she kills herself.
The Good: This was the best of the non-character-focused episodes so far. There were several enjoyable and emotional scenes, though this episode was also probably the most confusing so far (see: The Unknown). But first I'll go through what I definitely liked.
I enjoyed most of the Jill storyline though I do have to put a lot of it in The Unknown. It was a good take on her depression and inability to actually be okay after all that has happened. And because of that she believes others can't be okay either, especially Nora who lost her family. That explains why she was so focused on the gun since it symbolized the fact that Nora wasn't okay. Jill finding the gun was a powerful moment for her since it confirmed to her that everyone is still in pain but are moving on, hence why Nora has hidden the gun away. Jill has fallen far into her depression and by the end of the episode she is walking into the GR's doors and coming face to face with her mom. This is a great development and definitely sets the show up for something big.
I really liked the Guilty Remnant in this episode because we learned a ton about them. Patti's speech to Kevin was powerful and exposed exactly what the GR are: the villains who like Jill, can't seem to move on with their lives so they don't let anyone else move on. This episode's strongest element is how it subtly showed how somebody (in this case Jill) would make the decision to join the GR, proving that in the end they are essentially just a bunch of selfish teenagers who want attention because they can't face their problems. It's a genuinely sad take on this group of people, but also one that feels incredibly real and incorporates the idea that moving on from a tragedy is an extremely difficult task.
I also really liked Meg's anger in her few scenes. She doesn't fit in with the others because while the others are melancholy and depressed, Meg is bitter and angry and wants the people around her to suffer. She is quickly becoming a very dangerous individual and it's only a matter of time before she does something crazy.
Speaking of crazy, Kevin is forced to come to terms with his declining mental state in this episode which made for good television. We get a truckload of answers about what has been happening with the blackouts, where the white shirts went and why Kevin brought home a dog. It makes sense and really implies that Kevin is losing it and can't keep himself sane anymore. He has a great scene when he finds the shirts where he has to come to terms with what he has done and what it means for him.
Lastly, I really liked the conflict between Kevin and Patti. Kevin was ready to let everything go in the past, but Patti wasn't and was hell-bent on making Kevin understand that his attachments to life are driving him insane in an attempt to drive the GR's beliefs onto him. She talked a lot and it was really interesting to attempt to read the meaning behind her words and how they affected Kevin. I interpreted that Patti tried to make Kevin understand that attachments to life are driving him insane, but it's entirely possible that another person interpreted the scene as something else entirely.
The Bad: This episode won't work for everybody. Majority of this episode provides big scenes that can be open for interpretation depending on how you read each scene. There is no real answer to what the characters were doing. If you were wanting a more straightforward and easy-to-follow story, this type of instalment will be very unsatisfying.
I didn't like Patti's suicide at the end. it was painfully vague and a major scene like that needed to provide a proper reason for why Patti would do what she did. Was it the same thing like with Gladys? So she could be remembered? I'm genuinely unsure why she did it.
Jill and Aimee's split wasn't emotional because I really didn't care about their relationship at all. At least the scene helped with the examination of Jill's character and her depression.
The Unknown: Why did Jill do a lot of what she did? A lot of scenes in her storyline were tough to read. It took a lot of thinking for me to get an answer for her obsession with Nora's gun and decision to join the GR. But why did she free the dog or accuse Aimee of fooling around with her dad? And why did she say that she was fine? So many aspects of this episode were confusing and strange.
How did Kevin interpret what Patti was saying? That was another scene I had to think about before I understood some of it. Did Kevin understand what Patti was telling him? Why did Patti kill herself? What will the consequences of her death be?
What is the GR going to do on Memorial Day? I think they will use the stolen photos of departed people and dress up Loved Ones dolls according to what they were wearing and putting them in the homes of those who lost them. How did they get enough money to buy the dolls? How will the town react when they do this?
What else has Kevin done in the forest? He had a bucket and several pairs of boots so clearly he's up to something else too. Is this related to Kevin Sr.'s craziness in any way?
Best Moment: Tough to say. I'll go with Patti explaining the purpose of the GR since it gave a lot to think about and provided some answers on one of the show's most mysterious parts.
Character of the Episode: Jill for her struggle with depression which provided some compelling television.
Conclusion: As I've said before, The Leftovers is fascinating. This episode is more proof of that. It had good moments, but was quite literally unlike anything I have seen on television because of how ridiculously vague and open-ended it was. This is a really tough episode to score because of that, though I can safely say that it was the best of the non-Jamison sibling episodes so far.
Just a university student who loves to watch TV. And criticize it like hell.