Is there a silver lining in the darkness of Daniel Holden’s (Aden Young) life? ‘The Future’ certainly suggests a turning point.
Let’s bitch it out…
After last week’s fairly depressing episode, which saw low moments for both Ted (Bruce McKinnon) and Janet (J. Smith-Cameron) and Tawney (Adelaide Clemens) and Teddy (Clayne Crawford), it’s a bit of a relief to see things swing back into the Holden family’s favour in ‘The Future’.
The title is a reference from Tawney’s past. After a confusing make-out with the husband she’s uncertain about being married to last week, Tawney has fled to Miss Cathy’s (Debra Christofferson). She stayed here when she was a troubled girl and she remembers it fondly because she remembers how limitless the titular future was. The title is apt for an episode that offers a glimpse of what’s to come, a future that suddenly has potential thanks to a change in the direction of the series’ police investigation.
Things don’t start off this way, however. Daniel’s temper tantrum with the pool paint didn’t go unnoticed and his odd hours and unusual behaviour have activated the neighbourhood watch. The unseen nosy neighbours go above Melvin’s (John Boyd West) head and protest Daniel’s stay since he doesn’t have a lease. Just like that Daniel is asked to leave; he has until midnight to do so.
The turn around starts to occur when Sheriff Daggett (J.D. Evermore) visits Chris, a member of Trey (Sean Bridgers) and George’s high school crew. Last week Daggett told Sondra Person (an unseen Sharon Conley) that he remembered Chris among the teens brought in for questioning in the aftermath of Hanna’s murder 20 years ago, and yet the records are incomplete. Chris tows Trey’s line about Daniel until Daggett probes beneath the surface and asks for a DNA sample, then he immediately clams up. Later Daggett clarifies his suspicions to Daniel when Daniel is called in: as we suspected, Trey and the boys were having sex with Hanna. The Sheriff believes that Trey was fearful that Daniel’s release would reveal unwanted details from the past, which is why Trey has been gunning for Daniel so hard. Daggett (in one of the few stretches of credibility) even goes so far as to suggest that Trey may have killed George, which, combined with DA Person’s warrant (mentioned last week) suggests a very firm shift in the direction of the case. All of the sudden Trey and his many, many key chains are under close scrutiny. Wanna bet whose purple scrunchie that is?
The knowledge that Daniel has been cleared of suspicion offers a real sense of closure at episode’s end. As most of the family gathers at the newly painted pool to celebrate their good fortune, it’s difficult to believe that this is the first real celebratory occasion we’ve seen in ages (it’s also the first time all of these characters have shared the screen this season). Of course, since this is Rectify there has to be a gut punch, and as Janet slips into the empty chair next to a self-isolated Daniel, he asks if they can leave Paulie and go on a trip to see the ocean. She agrees and as the episode closes, we can see tears spilling across Daniel’s cheeks. It’s such a small little emotional beat, but it’s really powerful, especially when you consider how stoic and withdrawn Daniel usually is. If Daniel and Janet go on a road-trip together for next week’s finale (!), I can only imagine how awesome an episode it will be.
- Miss Cathy seems like a pragmatic lady. I love that she asks if Tawney can tolerate her husband long enough to get an education. Clearly Miss Cathy is a strong-willed, but empathetic and good-natured woman. It’s not hard to see why Tawney has good memories of this place, or why she ultimately refuses Teddy’s olive branch and elects to stay rather to take over Teddy’s house.
- I was hard pressed to think of the last time that we’ve seen Janet out of the house. Here she takes a trip to Murphy’s dinner for a first time interaction with Marcy (Kim Wall) and compliment the establishment’s comfort food. It almost seems like she’s working up the courage to deliver her speech to Ted and Teddy, which ends up being both quietly moving and a little uncomfortable. Hopefully laying her feelings bare in a less accusatory way will mark a turning point in Janet’s relationship with her husband.
- It’s hilariously refreshing that Jared’s (Jake Austin Walker) straight-up asks Janet what is happening with everyone and why he’s always kept in the dark. I can only imagine how confusing all this must be for poor Jared!
- When Amantha (Abigail Spencer) confirms to Daniel that she loves Jon (Luke Kirby), it’s hard not to get upset about her stubbornness. She’ll admit out loud that she loves him, but she’s content to let him go so that she can continue working at Thriftytown? And she’s angry at Daniel for not fighting for what he deserves? Grrr…
- Finally, if we look at manual labour as a metaphor that for the hurdles that must be completed in order for characters to move on, Daniel’s change of fortune makes sense because he finished painting the pool. This means that Ted and Teddy need to finish the kitchen pronto!
- Daniel (when Melvin tries to insists accidents happen): “No, they don’t”
- Janet (opening her beer): “Shall we toast Sheriff Daggett?” Amantha: “No.”
Your Turn: What did you think of last week’s episode? Were you hoping that Tawney and Teddy would reconcile? Is this the beginning of a turn-around for Daniel’s case? Will he and Janet get their own road-trip episode? Should Amantha fight for Jon? Do you feel bad for Jared? Sound off below.
Rectify airs Thursdays at 10pm EST on SundanceTV