It is the end of the world, and for better or for worse, art is still alive. Even art about the end of the worldâ ???? or a world, or a simulated space station of the same. Station eleven Episode 4 is about the ability of art to alleviate or exacerbate the wounds of the world; even its title, “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Arenâ ???? t Dead ”, ???? blatantly paraphrases the name of Tom Stoppard’s play, itself a riff from Village, a play performed in a modernized version by the show’s characters. Citation example: â ???? Fuck you, Hamletâ ???? Times have changed and art changes with the times. Even the end of time.
Like the Bread & Puppet Theater in the real world, a company that Station elevenThe Traveling Symphony would surely recognize them as kindred spirits, put it in their Why cheap art? Manifest, “Art is food. You can’t eat it but it feeds you. Art has to be cheap and available to everyone. It has to be everywhere because it is inside the world ”. That is essentially the spirit of the Traveling Symphony, and that is why they are greeted so warmly by its former conductor, Gil (David Cross), and his wife Katrina (Sarah Orenstein), for whom Gil dumped Sarah the Conductor and left the company a couple of years ago.
Gil and Katrina, the elegant community of former teachers, a country club, as he modestly puts it, is guarded by an active minefield, but it was too little, too late: The Prophet, whom we knew as “David.” In the previous episode, he has courted all the children in the community, Pied Piper style. So the “life and light” of the Traveling Symphony is welcome diversion.
Much of the episode rests on the shoulders of Kirsten, who hands over her lead role as Hamlet to her younger friend Alex (Philippine Velge) as the company tests out a remake of the play set in Portland in the 1990s, written by one. of yours. Wendy (Deborah Cox). It is Kirsten who tricks the Director into revisiting Gil and Katrina’s community by saying that she heard a rumor that Katrina died. (The Conductor tried to kill Gil when he left her for Katrina; by now it’s all water under the bridge).
It is also Kirsten who debates with Alex over the words of the Prophet, with whom Alex spent considerable time. (Kirsten’s revelation that she stabbed the guy doesn’t sit well with her younger friend.) The Prophet orients his preaching towards “post-bread” ???? young people who do not remember the world before the flu that wiped out humanity. to ???? There is no beforeâ ???? is his mantra.
It is Kirsten who realizes that this slogan is taken directly from the pages of Station eleven, a book of which she has spent most of her life convinced that she has the only copy. (He hid it in Gil’s desk, so he asks the Director to return to his community). In this episode we learn that it is a post-apocalyptic narrative, of some sort: In its pages, the mysterious astronaut Doctor Eleven finds himself stranded on a dilapidated space station in which an artificial ocean has wiped out virtually all adults, leaving children behind. called “the submarines”. to try to form a new society.
However, the book came into the possession of the Prophet, it certainly made a great impression. He sends a couple of children, whom we see horribly spying on Gil’s community from a distance in one of the most disconcerting shots fired of the episode, to destroy what they left behind when they joined him. They are suicide bombers equipped with landmines across their chests, and when they hug Gil, the world turns white.
Alex, meanwhile, rides on a white horse, presumably to join the ranks of the Prophet. In short, everything is a disaster.
For an incredibly complex episode, I haven’t even touched on the brief flashbacks, and I mean blink and you’ll miss them brief sometimes, which show young Kirsten and her guardian Jeevan living and arguing in a cabin in a snowy forest. somewhere… everything comes together brilliantly. We have Mackenzie Davis’ lead performance as Kirsten to thank, as well as expert directing by Helen Shaver, dream editing by Anna Hauger and Yoni Reiss, and a tight and thoughtful script by Nick Cuse. (May I say that it is a pleasure to see some of the writers who made the leap from The remains, which was amazing, Vigilantes, which was a spectacularly overrated disaster, get back to form here?) I’ll also give credit to the incredible and versatile score by Dan Romer, who at the end of the episode is doing a total tribute to Mica Leviâ ?? The haunting work of Jonathan Glazer’s horror masterpiece. Under the skin.
I guess the general point I’m trying to make is that in Station eleven, art matters. Light up the lives of performers and audiences alike – The director’s piano performance in the rain near the end of the episode is truly ecstatic, but it can also provide a skeleton upon which sinister forces like those of the Prophet can cover their ideas and ideas. poisonous actions. There is no reason to believe that doomsday narratives won’t catch on in a big way after a doomsday scenario. I mean, look around you, you know?