Author Topic: With My Little Hatchet -- Episodes 125 & 126  (Read 1171 times)

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Offline Luciaphile

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With My Little Hatchet -- Episodes 125 & 126
« on: March 21, 2006, 09:11:48 PM »
Same day.

Both of these are Lela Swift/Ron Sproat episodes.

David's yelling for his father. Roger appears just as astonished at the novelty of this as I am. We learn he's been in the East Wing securing windows or something. Note that please. I hate how later it's like they've all forgotten that the disused parts of the house were not totally unfamiliar to anyone.

I wish they had managed to break out the Lux flakes or whatever they used back then for fake snow. Maggie's mentioned Christmas. These episodes are airing in December. It's Maine. You could still have the lightning and thunder. I've seen that happen in winter time. It's actually more disturbing than it is for your conventional rain storm.

One of the big problems in the relationship between Roger and David is timing. There's no trust there (which given their history is unavoidable--at least on David's part). They never can seem to be on the same page at the same time. Roger's waiting and David decides he needs immunity before he can disclose his information. Roger won't give that and given David's past behavior, I can't say that I blame him. In the way of the narcissist, David immediately places all blame and responsibility on Roger. There is much shouting. Roger storms off.

Meanwhile in the bookcase room, Matthew's assembling can goods. The plan of the moment is to use Vicki as a hostage. I like the direction that Ron Sproat and Malcolm Marmorstein were taking with Vicki at this point in the show. Her timing is poor, but dumb, sweet Vicki is neither very dumb nor very sweet right now. She's actually doing a very good job of keeping up with Matthew's increasing delusions. IIRC, for most of the next few months, Vicki is shrewder, more mature, and far less naive. Anyhow, in like thirty seconds, Matthew has forgotten what his game plan is and Vicki quickly tells him he was leaving her in the room and that he's taking off.

Fortunately for Victoria Winters, the late Bill Malloy has her best interests at heart. He appears to David. Bill orders David to help Vicki. David's attitude to the ghosts is funny. I think he's intrigued by the novelty of them, but it never seems to occur to him why they're ghosts. There's no emotional connection. David tries to get Bill to say that Roger was the murderer, but Bill is brief and to the point: help Victoria Winters. Roger walks in just as Bill vanishes.

The late Bill hedges his bets by appearing to Matthew in the woods. Matthew reacts, shall we say, badly? Bill predicts someone will die tonight.

David comes down into the darkened drawing room and leaves a message for Burke.

The object of all this concern manages to untie the knots. She is on her way out the front door when Matthew comes back. In a very intriguing but, Matthew thinks she's Elizabeth. Vicki catches on immediately and attempts to play along. Unfortunately, his delusions are changing faster than technology in the 21st century, and he snaps out of it long enough to realize she isn't his beloved employer at all.

Fortunately, Burke arrives at Collinwood having gotten David's message. Given what Roger knows, I have to say his behavior is justified. Burke doesn't care. He threatens bodily harm if he can't talk to David. David, who probably never sleeps anyhow, renders the argument moot.

Matthew has taken all of the ghostly appearances into account and concludes that the reason why they're haunting him (Bill included) is because they want Vicki dead. His reasoning is torturous to follow, but he seems to think that she's to be a sacrifice to the ghosts. Ironically Vicki, who in later years becomes the spokesperson for the supernatural, is here the voice of rational and logical explanations. She's left to scream for help as Matthew goes to prepare for the sacrifice.

After much fuss and an explanation that nine-year-olds aren't put in prisons (nobody tells David about reform school), Burke gradually gets David to open up. Of course, David opens up with "The ghosts wanted me to" so Roger's back to being annoyed and scornful. Eventually we get to the part about David knowing Vicki's whereabouts. He also claims she's in no danger.

Lovely shot of Matthew honing an axe. Not quite sure where he is as he grinds the blade, but he's having a fine old time.

Josette steps down from the portrait and appears to Vicki in the room. In a voice that echoes, she tells Vicki not to be afraid before disappearing. The ghosts on DS aren't really much help, are they? They're never very clear or cogent. Like this is going to help Vicki how?

Getting Vicki's physical location out of David is a long and difficult process for all concerned, but at least Roger is listening.

Matthew and his little hatchet make their way to the bookcase room.

Finally, Burke gets useful information out of David. And he and Roger get some shotguns and head on out to the Old House. As I sit here it occurs to me that they should have called the police, but I don't even think anyone in the scene considers this option.

The award for Old College Try goes to Miss Winters who buys some time by talking about Josette. It isn't working though and Matthew raises the axe. Vicki lets out quite a scream. The ghosts call out his name. He grabs the hatchet and prepares to take on all comers. In walks the late Bill Malloy singing his signature song "What Do You Do with a Drunken Sailor?"

Couple of truly random and idle thoughts. My superficial understanding of ghosts is that they're usually not accident victims (this is why I have never gotten that Josette exists in ectoplasmic form. She fell over Widow's Hill but she didn't jump and she wasn't pushed. Bill's death would seem to be murder than and not accidental. Also, he's really living the life so to speak. There he is surrounded by female ghosts. Of course, all of them are widows and still mourning their husbands, but I guess the pickings are slim in the afterlife. I do wonder what all of these ghosts have in common though other than a shared geographic location. Bill Malloy - 20th century lower middle class fisherman. Josette Collins - 18th century wealthy French emigre widow. Assorted fishermen's wives from assorted decades and centuries. Can you imagine the long periods of awkward silence?

The Widows make their appearance. They are clearly from different decades. Millinery isn't my thing, but I think one of them has a poke bonnet on.  I don't know if they miscalculated or if Thayer David missed his marks or what, but there's an unintentionally funny bit when he's swinging the hatchet the wrong way as the ghosts advance in another direction. Finally everyone gets it right and it's suitably creepy.

Vicki meanwhile is doing the only thing she can do which is scream and scream some more. The cavalry arrives. Burke is right out of a romance novel here being both manly and tender. He is helping her out of the room when Roger spots Matthew slumped over in a chair. They tentatively approach him and Matthew falls over. He's dead.

So that wraps up a big old arc right there. Thayer David will not be seen for a good long time, but when he returns I'll be a lot happier about his performance, I promise you. And I'd like us all to remember that even before Vicki starts talking to the cops, the following people know about the secret room in the Old House:

Roger
Burke
David
Vicki

Convenient amnesia will strike in the next year or so; you heard it here first.
"Some people ask their god for answers to their spiritual questions. For everything else, there is Google." --rpcxdr-ga