Netflix Series Review - Requiem (Episode 3)
Episode 3 – Three episodes in, and the supernatural element is taking even more of a backseat. For a show that’s billed as a supernatural thriller, there’s a surprisingly small amount of spooky unexplainable stuff going down. It honestly seems, at this point, that Requiem was always meant to be a mystery, and that the supernatural elements were maybe thrown in just to add a bit of flavor. I don’t know how many mystery procedurals there are in the UK right now, but maybe there are a lot, and the producers of Requiem just needed to add the potential of a ghost to stand out from the crowd?
I dunno, it’s frustrating for sure. I want more from this series…I want the promise of ghostly shenanigans that the premise seems to suggest, and that the first episode hinted at. And for a British show, this one is remarkably tame. I really expected more from it; more blood, more tawdriness, more spooky shit! But aside from language, Requiem is keeping it quite moderate.
I’ll give it this…the third episode is better than the second. Even though the supernatural element is all but gone, replaced by the “is she/isn’t she” mystery, Tilly is finally starting to act like a real person again. And we are slowly peeling the layers back on the mystery, showing that quite a few people in the town have some part to play in the disappearance of Carys, or are at least hiding some kind of knowledge. It’s nice to see Tilly finally getting some support from a few townspeople, even if it generally only leads to more questions. And she’s seeing the ghost of her mother…so that’s something. As for Hal, at least he’s back, and has a part to play again. But man, Tilly is still treating him like dirt, and I totally want to slap her. He has no reason to continue helping her (other than he’s completely whipped on something he’s never actually had), but he still sticks around…and she still walks all over him. Nick takes a significant backseat this time around, which is fine, as he doesn’t really bring much to the table other than a well-practiced dour expression.
The rest of the townspeople are getting more fleshed out; the constable, the shady bakery boy, Trudy the bartender, Trudy’s drunk ass dad, Rose and JRD, and Nick’s wheelchair bound & mute aunt. We even get to see more of the circumstances around Cary’s disappearance. But…there’s so much we don’t do in this episode. The constable STILL hasn’t followed up on the time discrepancy that she noted from the first episode. Nobody is going through the stuff in the basement of the big house, even though there’s obviously clues/hints there. Tilly hasn’t even gone looking for the crawlspace that she remembered.
Sadly, this show just loves to play with us. Tilly has a discussion with Rose that seems like it’s going to go somewhere…and then doesn’t. Tilly has a discussion with Nick’s aunt, and it seems like there’s going to be some big revelations coming up…and that gets cut off at the knees. Every time it seems like we are going to get a major plot answer, we don’t. I’m fine with mysteries, and I’m loving the “small town with a secret” vibe, but we need to start getting some answers. Especially since this is only a 6 episode series. We are now smack in the middle of Requiem, and really have no answers to any of the central mysteries.
Look, there’s nothing inherently wrong with a slow burn. Plenty of shows manage to pull it off. But…they pull it off by at least giving out tidbits and morsels of revelations. We really haven’t had a single revelation yet, and that’s what it ultimately damaging the effectiveness of Requiem.
Notes/observations from the third episode:
1) Toe herring! Seriously, this show loves to throw out a “maybe it’s THIS physical thing that solves the mystery” tidbit every episode. At least Tru called this one out immediately after…
2) Tilly seriously has some great taste in clothes…which are always offset by some seriously grungy shoes.
3) Spasmodic cello playing! Is it headbanging? Is it an orgasm? Is it a one-person wrestling match?
4) Yay, Hal is useful again! And Tilly is going to finally start treating him like…oh…wait, nevermind.
5) “Satan? What, like the Devil?” Ummmm…do you happen to know another Satan?
6) Double suicide attempt! Pills AND drowning! These Brits know how to get shit done!
7) The antique dealer/estate sale broker is now a family friend?
8) Sorry Nick, now that she got that D, you get to sleep alone!
Tilly butt in jeans…and literally nothing else.
We are back to genuine emotion from Tilly, and the rest of the cast gets to emote way more often.
Less exciting all around. General camera shots/angles, nothing that establishes dread or terror.
2/10 More mildly bloody sheep…and literally nothing else.
Again, any time a live instrument is played, it helps heighten the tension. This needs to happen more.