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19 October 2008 @ 09:14 pm
2x01: Los Moscos  
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2x01: LOS MOSCOS


Oh hai, it's season 2 already! Those carnies never get a break...
 
 
 
the artist formerly known as pojymatitablu on October 19th, 2008 07:14 pm (UTC)
So, I don't know how long the hiatus between S1 and S2 was, but this is one hell of an opening episode. In spite of the tragedies happening in the S1 finale - what with the deaths of Appy and Lodz - now the sense of impending doom is stronger than ever. It's the beginning of the end, in a way.

Questions and comments:

- Justin pulling Talbot-Smith into the... astral plane or whatever that is - just like he did with Templeton and Norman in the first season - don't you think it's remarkable that he can control that? Or does it all work or an instinctive level? For some reason, I think that Ben's healing gesture would be easier to learn.

- Interesting how we meet Talbot-Smith, then Evander Geddes, Kerrigan... everyone is waiting for the Usher and no one for that poor Avatar of Light, lol. I am under the impression that, while S1 fell more under the category of "magical realism", S2 has stronger horror vibes. I mean, they have always been there - but they will have a greater impact this season.

- It's hard for me to remember exactly what I thought the first time I saw the series, but I believe this episode - since Samson's opening speech - was the first time I had the whole "war of the Dark and Light Avatara" cleared up.

- Poor Lila :-C She seems the only one to care for Lodz. Was he really that unpopular?

- Scudder is very present in this episode in spite of not appearing at all. I like it how, in the beginning, Belyakov basically calls him a coward telling Ben "Run... just like your father did", and later we see the Templar guy still being terrified by him even after twelve years.

- I don't know what's creepier: Justing leering at his sister, or her giving him that "come on, let's see what you'll do next" look. I rubbed my hands at that because it reminded me that Amy Madigan does one hell of a job this season :-D It's almost unbelievable that Iris was a later addition to the plot, I can't imagine Carnivale without her.
wytchcroft: earhartwytchcroft on October 19th, 2008 09:30 pm (UTC)
i remember the first time i saw this - and i was with a few friends... who got pretty freaked out. Not the usual darkness - (which is especially true of parts of seeason 1) - but more a kind of 'hardness'.

They were also impressed at how wide a scale the show was trying to cover with the whole avatar thing.

Watching this again and (like you say) with the new additions and with Justin being such... um -- well, what you said, koff! I actually felt the season shift a lot more than when it was on.

i think madigan is a superb character - but it's this time around that i'm more curious about her and my reaction to her.
Laura: BurnAfterReading: Security of your shitmozartfan1313 on October 20th, 2008 12:29 am (UTC)
I agree about this episode. It was an incredibly strong opener and there was this whole new tone of fear hanging over everything. In S1 everything was "unknown", whereas in S2 everything had a sense of forboding and tragedy. It was a much darker start to the series, compared to S1.

You make a good point about how people always seem to be waiting for the Usher. Darkness always seems to need more allies than Light. However, there were people waiting for Ben so it balanced.

I hated Lodz. lol. So I had no problem believing that people distanced themself from Lila because she was pretty much the only one mourning Lodz. He wasn't exactly a "people person."

There were points were I felt the Justin and Iris story slowed down the pace of the show, particularily in the first four episodes of S1. But in S2 I was fascinated by their tumultous relationship and the evil within Justin. They became favourite characters of mine and I loved all the focus on their development.
marionj2 on October 31st, 2008 11:09 pm (UTC)
Finally caught up with this episode.

It's one that raises a LOT of questions.

Did Sofie kill her mother? "Die! Just die!" It's another of those moments where Sofie's eyes are so dark they appear black.

Why does Justin say, "He is the Usher," not "I am the Usher"?

How does Smith know Henry Scudder is Justin's Prophet? The name written in the book can't be a list of avatars - if Hilton Scudder was the previous dark avatar. The name before Scudder is either Gregory Aastin (unlikely) or Gregory Pastin - obvious resemblance to Gregory Rasputin :-) - not Hilton Scudder.

What does Sofie mean by "I didn't..." That she didn't mean to hurt Jonesy? Or that SHE didn't - another entity did?

What the heck does Justin mean by "Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?"

What is the real message of the face peeling scene? Perhaps that there is another person under Justin's surface?

And last and least, how did Samson and Ben get Lodz's body into that truck? He's a big man, and neither of them is!

Also...

Something I'd never noticed before - that Samson's monologue refers to WWI as a "skirmish." It implies that it was nothing compared to the future war to come - Armageddon.

And some funny moments...

When Ruthie comes back to life and Justin gasps, the captions say he says, "Wilma!" Wilma????? It was obviously just a misunderstanding on the part of the caption writers, though I have wondered if he says "Norman." The gasp is two syllables, like "oh - ma," and right then Norman arrives, having his stroke.

Lila and the roller in her beard! :-D

In retrospect, a funny line. Ben to Ruthie: "How are you feeling?" Ruthie: "Not quite myself." :-D

And the Rasputin reference of the week...he was untimately wrapped in a blanket, bound with ropes, and tipped into a river. Substitute "ravine" for "river," and you have Lodz's burial. I can't help but wonder if there is a connection between Samson shoving him in with his cane, and the fact that Lodz uses a cane, and was in Russia at the time Rasputin died.

thalidarthalidar on November 1st, 2008 12:26 am (UTC)
Why does Justin say, "He is the Usher," not "I am the Usher"?

I'm thinking it's because he still doesn't associate the apparition with himself since he hasn't had the benefit of a Prophet to guide his as has Ben, so that Ben could begin to accept himself. But that lack of knowledge doesn't change the the fact that he himself is indeed the Usher as verified by the fulfillment of the prophecy that Talbot-Smith is putting together.

How does Smith know Henry Scudder is Justin's Prophet? The name written in the book can't be a list of avatars - if Hilton Scudder was the previous dark avatar. The name before Scudder is either Gregory Aastin (unlikely) or Gregory Pastin - obvious resemblance to Gregory Rasputin :-) - not Hilton Scudder.

Right, the list isn't one of Prophets, but rather likely a list of Templar that have accessed the book. As for Smith, given his knowledge of things Avataric, he probably knew (or deduced) Hilton was a Prophet of Darkness, and likewise Scudder would be of the following generation which would put Justin necessarily as the Prince following Scudder, and with Hilton's death, Scudder would have to be the Prophet (and this might even have been demonstrated to Talbot-Smith while he was with Scudder since they clearly have a history together).

Lodz uses a cane, and was in Russia at the time Rasputin died.

Given all of the information we have, I don't think we can place Lodz in Russia when Rasputin died in December 1916. In the modified character bios which include Scudder etc (i.e. those closest to the canon we see on screen), it puts Lodz and Scudder in Europe through 1915 (with Belyakov tracking them via Russian emigres after recovering from his wounds in 1914), then Belyakov finally tracked Lodz down in Venice a few months after Scudder broke up their act, and when Ben was born in 1916, Scudder left shortly thereafter because he felt that Belyakov and Lodz were after him again, having arrived in America.
marionj2 on November 2nd, 2008 01:56 pm (UTC)
I tend to think Smith has met Scudder previously. (There was that mysterious photo of Smith at the snake ritual - which seems to be the stuff of legend, since it was immediately retracted! However, there is the shadow of a tall thin man crossing the floor at the time that Kerrigan is cowering in the corner.) I think that's how he knows Scudder's name.

Ben was born in 1916? If he was 18 when the Carnivale picked him up in 1934, that makes his birth date more like 1918, 1917 at the earliest. In any case, I agree that the timing is tight - if Lodz was involved in Rasputin's murder, he would have had to leave immediately. On the other hand, that was a reasonable thing to do, both because it wasn't a healthy place for the murderers to be, and because, if the murder was avatar-related, the job was done, and it was time to go find Scudder.

All pure speculation, of course!
thalidarthalidar on November 2nd, 2008 05:47 pm (UTC)
Ben was born in 1916? If he was 18 when the Carnivale picked him up in 1934, that makes his birth date more like 1918, 1917 at the earliest.

Ben was picked up on April 19, 1934 and he was 18 at the time, so that means 1934 - 18 = 1916. So Ben would have been conceived in mid to late 1915, putting the Scudder/Belyakov battle in the first Battle of Lemberg in September 1914 so Scudder/Lodz would have some time to move around Europe. Then Belyakov/Lodz would need to show up in America by early 1917 since Scudder fled when Ben was still an infant.

marionj2 on November 2nd, 2008 05:52 pm (UTC)
Evidently I can't do math today! :-D

Still fits, though - especially if they left Russia immediately after the murder.

Will we ever know...?
thalidarthalidar on November 2nd, 2008 06:09 pm (UTC)
We can only hope we will eventually get the end of the story.
wytchcroftwytchcroft on November 15th, 2008 08:18 am (UTC)
re - face peeling
there is as ense that many characters carry others under their skin; ben - scudder, sophie - her mother (and more).

but also, i was reminded of the death mask later on...