Hemlock Grove Episode 1: Jellyfish in the Sky

Hemlock Grove - Poster

I was going to post this last night, but my internet died directly after the episode ended.  It was like Time Warner was telling me that they really, REALLY didn’t want to watch another episode.  It was the equivalent of hiding the remote.
Either that or Time Warner has spotty coverage.

Drink of choice: Sam Adams Oktoberfest
On top of being a great beer, Oktoberfest signals the best time of the year.  The pennant races are heating up (as a lifelong Tigers fan in his early 30s, the pennant races rarely held much interest for me until 2006, when they burst back towards relevance.  From the ages of 8-25, this was normally a pretty depressing time of year).  Football is weeks away.  The weather is getting cooler.  And, of course, Halloween is so close you can taste it.

Pre-viewing state of mind: Having just finished a bowl of Reese’s Puffs and listened to the relentlessly upbeat new album from Noah and The Whale (Heart of Nowhere), I think I would describe myself as “vaguely cheerful”.

Notes:

Immediate nudity is a plus.  Creepy lurking high schooler cutting himself is a minus.  I guess that’s a wash?  I think it’s a wash.

One of the characters actually just said, “There’s so much more happening than what you think you see.”  Subtle foreshadowing, Roth.  Veeeeeeery subtle.

I swear some of these shots look like soap opera production.

With this show featuring gypsy scum and thieving kids, it’s only a matter of time before the crusty jugglers start showing up.

Christina – the self-proclaimed novelist (but God help you if you call her Hemingway) – seems to pretty much be trying to be Summer Glau.  Or, more specifically, River Tam.

An appearance from Chief (Battlestar Galactica).  That was fun.

This acting/dialog is terrible.  Truly, truly terrible.  Even Famke, who is always great, is shockingly bad.  Is that an accent?  She’s in and out of it.  I feel like she doesn’t want to be there.
It’s like they nabbed Famke, Lili Taylor, and a bunch of people who couldn’t hack it on daytime soaps.
I’m going to try not to harp on the acting, but we’ll see how well I’m able to stick to that.  I’m not a strong man.

I feel like the guy who plays Roman is the same guy who was the warlock (Landon?  Is that right?) in Hansel & Gretel: Warriors of Witchcraft.  I know he’s not, but…that hair, man.

This music is awful.  Very overdramatic.  Every note seems like it’s trying to be very important, but it just comes off as cheesy.

I have a feeling the people in the writer’s room sat around trying to craft a Twin Peaks-esque show with werewolves.  (In fact, I can almost guarantee “Twin Peaks With Werewolves” is the mission statement of this show.)  But no one involved has a fraction of the talent of David Lynch.

Times a variation of the phrase “gypsy trash” has been uttered: 3

Final thoughts:
That was pretty bad.  They tried to build a sense of mystery and intrigue, but the story/dialog/acting doesn’t allow that build to happen.  Maybe it gets better, but I very much doubt that’s the case.  I think what I just saw is what I am going to get.  This doesn’t bode well.
Still, it was entertaining, if for none of the reasons it was supposed to be.  I suppose I can do another twelve episodes of this.

Post-viewing state of mind: Confused.  That’s it.  Just confused.

2 thoughts on “Hemlock Grove Episode 1: Jellyfish in the Sky”

  1. Having never watched True Blood, I can’t really comment on that. But I’m determined to get through this series. Hoping to have my episode 2 recap up this weekend.

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