Collateral attractions: Halt and Catch Fire 3.9 and 3.10
Lee Pace dancing in a chunky 90s kind of way. YES. What else can I say?
Seriously, though — I missed episode 8 and it looks like I need to go back (do not ask me when that will happen) to see how Joe reacted to Ryan’s suicide. However, I really enjoyed these two episodes and so when I read this afterward, it very much made sense.
It seemed to me that this finale was written in a way that could have made it a credible end to the series, but I was glad we’ll get to see one more season, just because (if they aren’t going to do me the favor of writing Cameron out, as I was hoping two weeks ago), we’ll go back to that tension-filled triumvirate of Cameron, Gordon and Joe that provided the show with such energy in the first season — this time, apparently, with Donna as their opponent. (The whole Tom thing has never really worked for me.)
One thing I continue to enjoy about this show is its sheer brutality — so many scenes in both these episodes made me reel emotionally as a viewer. Gordon’s dating tape, Joanie’s campaign against her father, Cameron informing Donna they can’t work together (and, in fact, all the scenes in the old Mutiny headquarters where the principals brutalize each other), the awkward way that Cameron and Joe have sex on the cusp between force and pleasure, Tom’s insistence that Cameron leave with him and her refusal, Donna’s anger in the car. I don’t kid myself that most people are this direct in real life, and they certainly weren’t in the late 80s — drama enhances that effect — but there’s something compelling, magnetic about the not-dressed-up straightforwardness with which the script plays all of this. Even when things happen in the dark, we seem to be looking at them through merciless, unrelenting eyes.