in Television

The Leftovers 1×05 “Gladys” Recap: Murder Still Doesn’t Make This Show Interesting

As the latest episode of The Leftovers opened with members of the Guilty Remnant, I was wondering why on earth the townspeople put up with them defacing property and hanging around on street corners glaring at people while chain-smoking. A minute later I got my answer : they aren’t. They are tired of the Guilty Remnant, and have committed what is in the show equated to a hate crime.

Hate crimes usually incite outrage – not so much here. One of the Guilty Remnant, Gladys, is kidnapped, tapped to a tree and then pelted with rocks until she dies. I should feel bad for her, but I really wasn’t. I despise these people, as I assume as an audience member I am supposed to, and was kind of secretly cheering as one of them was killed.

This puts a lot of heat on Chief Garvey who must balance a murder investigation with a town full of people who truly aren’t that concerned about the murder. In fact, when the body is sent to a government agency, thanks to a overzealous detective in the police department and some paper shuffling, Garvey has to call the agency asking for the body back. The man on the other line suggests he can send some people in to get rid of his problem with the Guilty Remnant, meaning killing them off.

I would have at least thought about the offer.

The episode also dealt with a crisis of faith (if you want to call it that) with Garvey’s Guilty Remnant wife, Laurie, after Gladys is killed. The GRM leader takes her to a diner where she tells her she needs a day off and they actually speak for the first time in the series. So, silence is used only when it benefits them?

Besides the murder and Chief Garvey trying to keep things under control, there again wasn’t much going on in the episode. It’s a small sliver of a view into a town and a premise that still isn’t that interesting.

Oh, and if I was supposed to feel bad at the end for the death of the Guilty Remnant member… I was not.