Sharp Objects S01E04

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SOME SPOILERS AHEAD.

There wasn’t much in the way of plot development or progression in this episode – at least not to me – but like I said in the last recap, this show focuses on the characters more so than anything, especially Camille. Or, at the very least, that’s what I get out of it. I’ve seen in online commentary that Camille is an unreliable narrator. I never thought of her as such, but it would paint her interactions with other characters and the way we see them respond to her in a very different light. Particularly her mother and Amma.

It would lend some credence to the idea that she’s dangerous. Although I don’t quit believe that. As far as we’ve seen Camille is really only a danger to herself and the idea is that she’s a danger to others, namely Amma. Of course, the only person we’ve really seen call Camille dangerous is her mother and the woman hates her own daughter so much, that anything she says about her must be taken with a mountain of salt. Chief Vickery did say so as well, in this episode, but I get the impression that he is somewhat under Adora’s thumb and would parrot her thoughts and opinions.

On the subject of Adora’s animosity toward Camille, it looks like she hates her because when Camille was born she didn’t fit into her ideal vision of what her unborn child would be? Or that Camille’s birth would fix Adora’s relationship with her mother? And so she felt stupid/silly/like a child? It certainly fits with what we’ve seen of her before and her disliking Camille because of her defiance. It’s an awfully petty thing to hold over your child all of their life, from as far back as their childhood.

It also seems like – judging from the fact that Camille said that Adora¬†was a child – that Adora had her very young. Which would also explain why she hates Camille. Wind Gaps does have certain ideas about women and seeing as Camille has her mother’s maiden name, she was born out of wedlock. Being an unmarried, possibly teen, mother would have made Adora an outcast. Given the stigma that would have been attached to Adora, I could see her putting her resentment about that on Camille. That stigma hasn’t followed her all her life, though, so who knows.

I so despise how Adora is toward Alan. She treats him like he’s little more than the help. I was so happy to see him calling her out on her “woe is me”, victim complex and how unfair she is to Camille. But of course Adora would never admit that she has done any wrong because everyone has wronged her, somehow. I love that Alan is the one person in the house that genuinely cares for Camille, aside from Gayla. It broke my heart when they tried to surprise her for her birthday – in the flashback to her teenhood – and she blew them off. Even more so when she went back to the cake and celebrated by herself. He was trying to connect with her and she wouldn’t let him. Adora had damaged her that much. Camille can’t let someone care for her.

This was somewhat reflected in her interaction with Richard in this episode when he tried to kiss her and she pulled away. He seems to genuinely have an interest in her, but he did have that conversation with Vickery earlier in the episode that made me think that he may just be using her. Add to that the fact that Camille was thinking of some very disturbing things while Richard manually stimulated her, it’s probably best that the two of them don’t head in a romantic/sexual direction. Just because I don’t think that it would be the best or healthiest thing for her.

The little bit of this episode that did have to do with the murders, was Camille showing Richard past crime scenes. Specifically, those that involved teenage girls. It is really strange that Camille has a connection to each of the crime scenes; two of them being places where traumatic things happened to her. It’s clear that she was assaulted by the football team at the “end zone”, but what happened at the shed still remains a mystery. Why said shed seems to be a popular hang out for misfit teen girls in Wind Gap, especially considering the images that litter it’s walls, isn’t something I think we’re ever going to get an answer for.

It’s interesting that Amma never mentioned to Camille that she was close friends with Ann and Natalie and curious that she doesn’t seem worried about her life being in danger. The more of Amma we see, the more her disingenuous nature is obvious and I think Camille is wise to her games. Even the “real” her that she shows Camille – the side of her that Adora doesn’t get to see – is a fabrication. She’s been a fraud for the entire time we’ve seen her on screen. I don’t buy anything she says and she’s even more manipulative that Adora, which says a lot.

She’s still a strong candidate for having killed Ann and Natalie for me. Her creepily, borderline flirtatious behaviour toward her teacher Mr. Lacey makes me think that maybe she flirted her way into convincing him to kill them for her. He wasn’t particularly resistant to her flirtations. But that’s just a quack theory.

We got a different picture of Natalie from John than we were previously led to believe. I didn’t at all expect him to say that she stabbed the girl in the eye. That was demonstrative of a tendency toward violence – and perhaps an anger problem – that’s shocking. Maybe there was a little bit of truth to what Bob Nash said about Natalie being a bad influence on Ann, but not in the way he means. He has a particular idea of Ann that is more or less the antithesis of Natalie. Perhaps Ann found in her a kindred spirit, someone with whom she could be herself. If there is one common thread between parents in this show, it’s that they see their daughters one way and it’s not who their daughters are. They don’t know them at all.

Random thoughts:

  1. Did she sleep outside, in the grass and not in the car?
  2. Vickery can’t be very good at following John if John knows he’s there.
  3. They know Adora well enough to know that she didn’t want to be there.
  4. Oh, John’s looking for the spider that Camille freed?
  5. Unexpected Tupac.
  6. She emerged rather quickly for someone who was supposed to be resting.

Sharp Objects airs Sundays at 9 PM on HBO.

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About The Author

An avid reader who accidentally discovered her love and talent for writing and has loved movies for as long as she has been watching them. Stumbled into film-making and found her second love because she decided to read for a degree in it on a whim - kind of.