Blogging Harper’s Island (Because Someone Has To)–Episode 6: Sploosh!

This entire post is spoilers.

This was probably the best episode we’ve seen all series. I really liked it! I can’t figure out what the “sploosh” is supposed to refer to, it being more of the sound of something being dropped into the water than a face slap or shot arrow, but that’s not very important. It had a lot of what I liked (Cal & Chloe, JD & Madison) and none of the stuff that I dislike (Henry & Trish, the crocodile tears of the Beermonger). I so don’t care at all about Trish or Henry. I don’t find them likable and the best friend thing going on with Henry and Abby is just weird and not the kind of thing an engaged guy should be participating in. I say again that I’m not really surprised that Father Wellington wasn’t a big fan. But that’s not really the point. Long story short is that the characters were allowed to act according to their prior development yet we still managed to be surprised by them, and the primary suspense that will carry us through the rest of the show has been clarified. I have nothing bad to say about the episode.

I’ll start with Cal and Chloe, because they were light-hearted and charming as always. They obviously got to have their boat ride during which Cal was obviously supposed to propose to her had he not lost the ring–great wrap-up of that storyline! The story of how the ring was found was pretty funny and not really unrealistic; I remember when we lived in Annapolis my mother had a friend named Charlene DeVivo, whose daughter had found a diamond ring at the beach. She’d reported it found, but it was never claimed, so she got to keep it! (They also had a cat named Nicholas that would crawl through the pockets and tracks of their pool table, but those two things are all I remember. This memory is nearly thirty years old and came out of nowhere. But I digress.) It took Chloe maybe too long to find a pay phone and leave a voicemail, but that’s just TV. We needed, as an audience, to hear Cal rattle off the specifics of the ring so we would learn things about him, like how he is precise and he is well-off and he is operating beyond the realm of the average person so far as social graces go. Remember, those guys in the bar aren’t the only Americans to have stared blankly after he’s made a little speech. Chloe’s intervention with the slap was less realistic–would that woman really bail on her fiance so quickly or fling the ring so violently away from her?–but it was a surprise. They are like a couple from another movie. It was also a surprise that Cal decided not to propose to Chloe that night AND to tell her why. Of course, promising Chloe that they would get engaged sealed his death warrant. One of them will be dead within two episodes. Maybe both, in a horrific, romantic way.

I know we only JD and Madison interacting for the first time in the previous episode, but they are good together. They are honest with and interested in each other, and I completely believe their chemistry. Her springing him from the padlocked pantry was the rightest thing in the world, as was him building a tower of canned food and her kicking it over when he was gone. I am perhaps being fooled by the producers of the show and the joke is perhaps on me, but I am not getting the impression that JD is untrustworthy. I understand why his friends and family don’t trust him–he understands, too–but I don’t think he’s up to no good. I guess the scene where he’s all dramatic with Abby’s father about digging up the grave in front of Abby and Henry could have been staged so that they would take up the task and see the skeleton and be reassured. I guess it also could have been a way to get Abby’s father out to the gravesite that night in order to keep him away from something else. JD showing up at Wakefield’s cabin in the woods is very mysterious, but that’s the clarified suspense thing I was talking about. If JD is trustworthy and that’s Wakefield in the cabin, then why does Abby’s father insist that he’s dead? Who’s skeleton is in the grave?

So these are the big questions:

1. Is JD trustworthy?
2. Is Wakefield really the murderer?
3. Why are the murders happening at this time and place?
4. How exactly is Abby’s father involved in this?

I think these are interesting questions to ponder, and I think they will make the second half of the series much better than the first half. That’s probably always the case with any mystery story, but I don’t mind. I don’t read a ton of mystery books or watch a lot of mystery programs, so I’m not genred out. I am pissed, pissed, pissed at Trish for blabbing about Richard and Katherine to her sister, when it isn’t her business and wrecking her sister’s life before the arrow could. Trish is basically unlikable. I don’t trust Henry as a finance, but I don’t dislike him. Trish is a brat. Gah! How can she not see that she looks exactly like Abby but with money? It’s the only reason Henry is marrying her. He’d totally marry Abby instead if Abby wasn’t such a wreck.

I noticed that the Pacific Northwest weather isn’t inexplicably perpetually sunny anymore, and I feel better about that. I also feel better that the present people are worried about the absent ones, and that people are finding Uncle Marty’s parts. I groaned when I saw Abby and JD go trip-trapping over the footbridge with the missing slat. I’m glad that the missing bridesmaid’s friend (Beth? Is she Beth?) was actively upset, although I don’t understand why Beermonger was pretending that he thought Joel was OK and told a lie. Dude, once you start telling lies to people–who haven’t asked–about the guy who’s dead more or less because of you and whose money you stole, you Definitely Have It Coming. I don’t see how he can live for more than another episode or two, either. Sully and Dredlocks I don’t care enough about to even wonder about their deaths.

We did get confirmation that Wellington died; I can’t remember if I took a stand about it or not when I wrote about the last episode.

Goodbye, Thomas! You were a bad father-in-law, but you had good instincts. Sorry you couldn't satisfy your hot young wife, but at least your cuckolder was punished for it.

Goodbye, Thomas! You were a bad father-in-law, but you had good instincts. Sorry you couldn't satisfy your hot young wife, but at least your cuckolder was punished for it.

It’s almost symbolic how Richard died–as violently penetrated by an extra-long arrow as he violently penetrated Katherine. I don’t think Madison saw any of it because it was so bright inside and so dark outside her window, but I’ve been wondering about why she rubs her face at the end of the show. I think it must be that some of her father’s blood splashed onto the window, and she sees the spot as part of her reflection.

Goodbye, Richard! I'm not saying that Thomas deserved to die, but I understand why you weren't sorry about it. Unfortunately, Karma still factors such feelings into the equation and you come out on the wrong side of the equal sign.

Goodbye, Richard! I'm not saying that Thomas deserved to die, but I understand why you weren't sorry about it. Unfortunately, Karma still factors such feelings into the equation and you come out on the wrong side of the equal sign.

I’m very stoked for next week’s episode. That is, I hope it’s next week! I don’t keep up with all the scheduling changes. I suppose I ought to look it up before I plan a weekend around it.

A Few Words about Photobucket
Before I close tonight, I have to make a glowing review of Photobucket. I used to hotlink, until I learned that was rude. I still haven’t changed over all my old links, but upon recommendation I opened up a Photobucket account because it had an automatic uploader tool. When I see an image I like on the Internet, I don’t have to save it as a JPG and upload it to my WordPress account anymore to use it–I just upload it with a right-click and copy the URL. Much easier. Recently, however, they’ve made it so that there are even fewer steps. I right-click on an image and upload to Photobucket, and then FROM THAT PAGE I get asked if I want to see the URL codes and a pop-up window opens. I click a button to copy the code I want and then I can just paste it here. I am stunned by how efficient the process is. I don’t get email bulletins or anything, so maybe this is old news, but I just encountered it and it’s awesome. I am suspecting that some upgrade brought these shortcuts as well as the stats tools that I haven’t explored yet, and I would just like everyone to know how much I appreciate this service.

Hip, Hip, Hooray for You! Thank you!

Hip, Hip, Hooray for You! Thank you!

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  • Leese  On May 27, 2009 at 4:47 am

    … did you get the feeling that Cal was going to play more of a role in upcoming episodes by the expression on his face after telling Chloe that he wasn’t going to propose to her?

    For some reason, it gave me the creeps.. like he has other wheels turning in his head… given that Chloe seemed to be obsessed by Wakefield in the beginning episodes kind of made me think that maybe he has some kind of role in what’s going on.

    Could answer your question regarding the Why and When of the murders…

    Personally, I think JD is trustworthy. I would be really pissed if he turned out otherwise because that would just be too easy.

    According to the blog-o-sphere, the burned dude is NOT Wakefield but some deputy from the past but who knows.

    I will say this.. the whole thing about the data in the Sheriff’s attic better be a red herring because if not, that would just be weak.

    God! I need a life!!

    ~ Leese

  • Karen  On May 27, 2009 at 8:05 am

    This is so random but I totally read your blog last night! I should have left a note; I’m happy you stopped by at mine. Now let’s get to business.

    First, I think you are confusing Chloe with Lucy, the one who burned up. They look exactly alike, and we haven’t seen Lucy since the first episode, really, when she was the one talking about the murders. I can only keep track because I check with the pictures all the time. I hope Cal plays more of a role in the upcoming episodes partly because I like him a whole bunch but also because he clearly knows all kinds of interesting, random stuff and people haven’t really been taking him seriously. I am so excited about the minute he suddenly knows exactly what to do and gets down to business, giving orders and planning a strategy and perhaps priming a shotgun. The wheels are spinning in his head, but I’m not getting anything insidious out of it. Just like I think JD is trustworthy.

    I think that the Why and When of the murders is probably going to be something involving Henry or Abby, most likely Abby. Everyone else is just decoration and along for the ride for the wedding, but Abby hasn’t ever returned to the island before now. The murderer has been waiting patiently for her return.

    I didn’t know that about the burned dude being some deputy. I think that’s fantastic! But then who is in the coffin, hmm?

    I can’t wait for Saturday!

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