TV Series Lovecraft Country: Season 1/ Episode 4 "A History of Violence" – Recap/...
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Lovecraft Country: Season 1/ Episode 4 “A History of Violence” – Recap/ Review (with Spoilers)

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As Atticus and company search for the missing pages of Titus’ book, Hippolyta discovers a means to get the truth about George.


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Director(s)Victoria Mahoney
Writer(s)Misha Green, Wes Taylor
Aired (HBO)9/5/2020
Introduced This Episode
SammyJon Hudson Odom
YahimaMonique Candelaria

This content contains pertinent spoilers.

Recap

You’re Not The Only One With A Sense of Adventure – Hippolyta, Montrose, Atticus, Letitia, Christina, Dee

Remember how Hippolyta noted she wanted to handle the Greenbook? Well, she doesn’t do that this episode but with her being the only one with a car, Montrose, Atticus, and Letitia need her to get to Boston. Now, why are they going to Boston? Well, with Christina accosting Leti, and a growing curiosity about why she is pestering them and tired of not having answers for themselves, they feel compelled to.

However, while Atticus and the rest hit up a museum in Boston, one that may hold Titus’ vault, Hippolyta explore on her own with Dee. Someone who, on the way home, discovers the map George used to get to Ardham, which is where Hippolyta, who leaves Atticus and the rest behind, ventures to.

Would You Take Advantage of A Woman While She Is Down? – Ruby, William

Ruby questioning William's intentions.

Back in Chicago, Ruby learns that her inhibitions have led her to missing a chance in working at Marshall Field and Company. This doesn’t necessarily send her into a downward spiral but is a blow to her ego since, between the presumption Leti was given money from their mother to that, and very little praise at Sammy’s bar, she is feeling low.

This is perhaps why when William approaches her, likely on a mission from Christina, while she pushes back at first, his persistence and promises allow him to pass the front door and possibly into her draws.

There Is So Much You Don’t Know – Sammy, Yahima, Atticus, Letitia, Montrose, Christina

Taking a step back, and fleshing things out, what triggers the need to go to Boston is a mix of Christina approaching Letitia at her home, and Letitia realizing Christina is the one who gave her the money to do so. Add in Christina wanting to come inside, uninvited, to look for something of Hiram, and this gets Letitia started and wanting to know more.

So, in order to do so, she first goes to Atticus, who, with it being clear he isn’t trying to get her involved but rather handle this Sons of Adam thing then leave, is of no help. Thus Letitia goes to Montrose, and with him a bit easier to push, he eventually opens up and sets up the ride to Boston.

Once there, the team of Atticus, Montrose, and Letitia deal with some puzzles, including a booby trap, and end up discovering the same elevator that goes up into Letitia’s home. Mind you, we’re in Boston, their home is Chicago, and you can’t walk between the two cities in a matter of two to three hours. But, remember, we’re dealing with magic spells, portals, and what have you.

Yahima (Monique Candelaria) after being discovered in Titus' vault.
Yahima (Monique Candelaria)

Hence why, in the final room of the underground vault, which looks like a ship, they encounter Yahima. Someone who is the being that Titus relied on to translate his book, since apparently it was written in a language known as Arawak, or something close. Though, while Yahima seems like they could be an asset, unfortunately, no sooner than Montrose tries to take what they came for, the room floods, and while they make it back to Chicago with the document, we learn Yahima was made into a siren; thus she can’t talk – only screech.

Though to make matters worse, Montrose slits her throat, the minute the two of them are alone, as a means to finally stop his son’s investigation.

Things To Note | Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. Considering what happened in the last episode, when Atticus and Letitia had sex, anyone else confused by her saying she had sex in college? Unless she meant she didn’t have penetrative sex? If not me being confused altogether.
  2. So is William a pawn for Christina? Hence him using her to get into Leti’s house since Christina couldn’t?
  3. Anyone else confused as to why Hippolyta left Boston without her family? Is this a multi-day stay in Boston, and she simply decided to get on the road and explore? Are we missing something?
  4. Could voodoo magic be stronger than what Christina and the Sons of Adam practice?
  5. Was Christina playing with those kids just to draw the attention of the police and get a reaction?
  6. Considering Christina’s interest in Hiram’s Orrey, do the pages equally matter or no?
  7. Are the rumors true that the bar owner, Sammy, and Montrose have a thing? Also, considering we saw Sammy getting head from some random guy, was that because Montrose disappeared or Sammy is just a hoe? Also, how many know Sammy is about that life? From what it seems, he isn’t running a gay bar, just a regular ole bar.

Review

Title Card - Lovecraft Country Season 1 Episode 4 A History of Violence

Highlights

While It Can Often Be Confusing, It’s Never To The Point Of Wanting To Get Off The Ride

I’m not going to pretend I always understand the twists and turns of this Sons of Adam adventure. I get the gist Titus was looking for eternal life, strictly recruited men to help and gain access to it, and seemingly used Yahima to decipher many of the spells that we see taken advantage of. However, as for how in the hell the magic works, beyond knowing it is blood magic, I’m at a loss.

Yet, while it is impossible to understand how Atticus and company went from a deep underground vault in Boston, back to Chicago, it doesn’t leave me lost to the point of tapping out. For the strength of Atticus, Montrose and Letitia makes it so you just sidestep the unknown and assume there will be an explanation later. Plus, increasingly, the show is more about the journey and who accompanies Atticus than the end result or even who sparks the interest.

Atticus’ Relationships

There is something undeniable about Majors and his role as Atticus. It is why, despite some of the fantasy elements not making the most sense, you can continue without feeling too lost in the details. But, no man is an island, and much praise has to go to who he often has with him.

Letitia, as we have done for nearly every episode thus far, is a huge asset, but Montrose really stepped it up this episode. Mainly by opening up and truly honoring his brother’s last wishes. Of which included being the person he knew as a kid before their father whooped any feeling that being loving and vulnerable was safe. For it is in his scenes with Atticus that lead to praise. Especially in regards to talking about Dora and playing the role Atticus may have missed out on growing up. This ultimately reminds you that as much as Majors is the captain of the ship known as Lovecraft Country, it runs relatively smoothly due to multiple people.

On The Fence

Hippolyta and Ruby’s Story

Hippolyta leaning against her car.

We don’t mean to bunch together the women who aren’t intimate or connected to Atticus, but we must admit there is a need to wonder where these storylines can go, and do we want to follow them? Hippolyta’s journey for the truth about George is necessary, but neither she or Dee have the charisma to keep it interesting. Granted, this is HBO, so violence can compensate for that, but while we’re not strongly invested in either character, we don’t want to see them hurt either.

Then with Ruby, like with Hippolyta, you recognize the importance of the story but just wish there was a better draw to it. Because Ruby’s struggles as a clearly Black woman during those times, it isn’t often shown. Heck, even when we see movies about the civil rights movement, women who look like Ruby exist, but rarely get the opportunity to have their stories told. So to see her deal with colorism, being a woman with meat on her bones, and her struggle for self-actualization, you have to appreciate that. Add in her knowing how white men fetishize her and calling it out, you cannot deny the importance of what we’re seeing.

Yet, it also pushes you to realize that Lovecraft Country might be trying to use a Trojan Horse tactic. At least in terms of making Atticus and Leti’s story the main draw, and what often is advertised, but then bring in Ruby and Hippolyta so that you get Black stories minus the fantasy element. For while Hippolyta is venturing towards that, the heart of her story is being told her husband was murdered by a cop, and it not sitting right in her spirit. Her knowing there is something more and the need for justice driving her.

In our mind, this represents the difficulty many Black women have in dealing with not getting justice when they lose a loved one, but wanting, needing, the details of what happened. Mind you, not necessarily for selfish reasons, but to prove their loved one was innocent alongside know and see the guilty party convicted.

Christina

Christina visiting Letitia.

It’s clear there are long term plans for Christina, but until then, it seems she is appearing for the sake of us not forgetting about her existence. With that in mind, it makes us seeing her chase around kids and have some cop talk to her feel both weird and unnecessary.

At this point, Christina has made herself known and is definitely one to keep our eye on. A reminder of how she isn’t welcomed because she is a woman or her antagonizing Leti just seems like a disservice to a character who doesn’t need that extra push.

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Amari Allahhttps://wherever-i-look.com
I started Wherever I Look back in 2011 and from movies, TV, the occasional book, play, and Broadway show, have been trying to bridge the gap between a critic and an avid lover of various forms of media.

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Review Summary

Lovecraft Country, as it uses Atticus, Letitia and Montrose as a lead in for lesser seen and acknowledge storylines, continues to show its brilliance.
Christina
75 %
Hippolyta and Ruby's Story
78 %
Atticus' Relationships
83 %
While It Can Often Be Confusing, It's Never To The Point Of Wanting To Get Off The Ride
85 %

Questions, Comments, or Opposing Opinion?