I went back and forth about doing an episode by episode breakdown of this series. If you’d like that let me know (like I did WAAAAY back with Battle Royale) but this is my impression based on the first two episodes. That I’ve watched a few times just to catch as much as I could.
First of all I want to rub it ALL THE WAY in that this series is filled with Black and Brown people while Lovecraft himself was a racist. As a horror fan, enjoying Lovecraft became difficult when, ya know… He wouldn’t see me as an actual human. I get a little thrill out of things that piss off racists. It’s my fetish. Don’t judge me.
I have fuzzy memories of an uncle of mine either talking about or owning a copy of ‘The Negro Motorist Green Book.‘ I know Ma told me about it in a really roundabout way that was indicative of a lot of Black families that wanted to keep certain things unspoken for the young ones. (Boy do I have stories about the AIDS epidemic and Army recruiters at my high school…)
I can just feel the love in this. The writing is perfect. I can literally see stories told to me by my grandmother and her siblings come to life among a horror story that keeps me engaged. It’s really cool and I am so glad this is a thing that’s happening. It’s filling a horror hole in my heart that felt cheated by what’s been coming out of American Horror Story these days (it’s OKAY, just not blowing me away like the first season).
And yes… My literary geek ass has added as many of the books I saw in the series on my TBR list… Because clearly, it’s too short.
“Don’t let them make you question yourself. That’s how they win. They want to make us crazy, terrorize us, make us scared.” Man, if that isn’t the path of the oppressor/abuser. Fantastic.
And I shall leave my assessment of these first two episodes with this…
Through generations of a family, a dollhouse with mysterious powers manipulates people right up to six year old Alice. She receives the house from an estranged aunt and voices inside help her deal with her rapidly degrading family life. But Alice resists the promises of the house as it is clear even as she grows to adulthood, the house has sinister intentions.
Basically this is a Lovecraftian story of how a curse follows a family for generations until Alice fights to end it. I love the creature designs and I was hooked watching Alice grow up. The backstory with the family is revealed in-between Alice growing up and the time jumps were a little jarring, I’ll admit. But you get used to them as you read. I hope there’s a sequel to this because it is clearly set up for one. 4 out of 5.
Saru Solan, a private detective, is tasked with finding a blue eyed girl by the interdimensional beings called Gaespora. The fate of the world rests with this mysterious girl who is also being hunted by the elizi, who have been killing every blue eyed girl they find. With a creature that can eat their universe threatens, Saru has to find and protect this girl at any cost.
When I saw this titled as a “Lovecraftian, cyberpunk, noir” I bought it immediately and I was not disappointed. If you’ve ever read Jeff Somers’ Avery Cates series, this book has a similarly dark and rough feel. The world isn’t pretty, people get very dead very quickly, and life in general doesn’t seem worth all that much.
The blend of magic and tech is handled very well and Saru is a kick ass main character. The dystopian world she lives in is the same balls out, straight forward, cutthroat tone as the character herself. The writing is nearly perfect and I was hooked from start to finish. A solid 4.5 out of 5 and I can’t wait to read the next one.