Thursday, 5 December 2013

Strange Paradise Episode 7

On this blog, I am God! And now that we've gotten that sorted out, let's remind ourselves of what happened when last we ventured to that most strange of paradises.

Jean-Paul is beginning to regret breaking the voodoo curse, thus allowing his ancestor Jacque to re-enter the world; maid/faithful retainer/immortal voodoo priestess Raxl got spooked by a spot of rain; and Jacques (in the guise of Jean-Paul) tried it on with the milftastic Doc Carr.

Meanwhile, in ye olde flashback land, we saw that Jacques was just as amorous the first time he was alive, and that he was definitely copping off with his wife's sister. The randy bugger.

Oh, and there is apparently a buried treasure somewhere on the island.

Now, let us delve into the next exciting installment of...Strange Paradise. Namely, episode 7.

We open, because of course we do, on a long lingering shot of Raxl walking around the set really slowly. This is Strange Paradise 101, and boy do they milk it here. She puts some orange juice on the breakfast table then has a look out of the window at the weather and, just as you think the excitement is going to be too much to bear, she is joined by Doc Carr who...ah, she looks out the window at the weather. Now, we get it, there's a lot of wind; and if the dialogue didn't clue us in the atrocious sound effects surely would have; but I'm pretty sure a centuries old voodoo priestess and a woman who just found out her sisters corpse is being cryogenically stored in the basement could find more exciting topics of conversation.

And so they do! Doc Carr mentions her plans to have breakfast with her late sisters Doctor and instead of saying 'Oh, you can't, he's dead. Your brother in law went out with my fuck buddy last night and they came back with the Doctors dead body. They reckon it was an accident but... it's rotting downstairs if you want a look' Raxl goes off on one about the island being well named (The Garden Of Evil) and how the Doctor has left...this world!!! Granted, the information is in there, but she needs to work on her succinctness.

Dude is dead yo! Check it!
After the titles roll the two of them have a very long winded conversation about how the Doctor died and whether it's possible that the spirit of a man 300 years could have possessed a dude and killed someone. Doc Carr is, somewhat surprisingly, not entirely convinced by Raxl's claims of having damned Jacques to Hell a couple of centuries ago. Until, bizarrely, she is convinced;

Your fears are infecting me too! I've gotta get away from here! So should all of us!

I say bizarrely, because there is nothing to account for the change. Raxl rants for a bit, Carr scoffs, Raxl  repeats basically the same rant again and Carr is all 'GET ME OUT OF HEREEEEEE!!!' Very odd. Anyway, Raxl ends the scene by running upstairs screaming about how Carr doesn't understand the Devil because she never knew him and Doc Carr ends the scene by hysterically yelling to an empty room that she has to escape the evil island and return to a place of reason. I genuinely think they forget to film like 5 scenes here.

Over at dayglo cafe a woman I think we may have seen before is reading Tarot cards and then artist dude from a few episodes ago; you know, the one I said was a conman in league with the mafia; sits down and they have a nice chat about how the mafia are out to get him and he needs that commission Doc Carr promised to get him from Jean-Paul. So, I guess that means his story was real and he isn't a conman and I don't know what I'm fucking talking about. Ah well.

You gon die Son. Die bad.
Their entire conversation, by the way, is in the form of one long tortured metaphor about the wind, because some supervillain and/or shady government agency has apparently brainwashed everyone to only be able to talk about the weather this episode.

Back at the house, Raxl is downstairs again. I'm pretty sure she only came down so she could sweep back up them after delivering a line about being captives of an evil force. Because that is exactly what she does after Doc Carr mentions, somewhat hysterically, that she feels like a prisoner.

Look at her go
Quick cut back to the bar where tarot car lady bemoaning the fact that there's an evil force in the air and it's her job to do something about it. Righto sweetheart, delusions of grandeur much? We all know Doc Carr is gonna save the day!

Next up it's...some hippy lass I've never seen before, in a room with bunk beds. God knows what this is gonna turn out to be.

There's a knock at the door and after hastily hiding her ashtray under the bed she opens the door to reveal...Reverand Ted McGinley! From way back in episode 3! I've missed Reverand Ted. And it turns out Reverand Ted is missing young Holly, the teenager he may or may not have a massive crush on. This new hippy chick is apparently her room-mate.

Sassy hippy is sassy
But hold on, wasn't Holly meant to be confined to some sort of mental institution? This looks more like a college dorm or something.

Anyway, hippy chick and Reverand Ted have a back and forth about where Holly might be and whether or not he totally wants to have wild sex with her on his pulpit, before hippy chick lets slip that Holly has 'flown South, like the birdies.' Off you go Reverand Ted, go catch your little birdie.

But what's this? Here's Holly wandering around day glo cafe, looking all winsome and confused, hugging her luggage as sad music plays. This is Emmy calibre stuff, people.

Won't someone buy a lonesome lady a drink?
She tries to buy a drink but is stopped because she's underage, which somehow leads to Tarot lady pronouncing that she's under the threat of death. Because DayGlo Cafe is nothing without it's friendly welcome. Incidentally, am I the only one who finds it really off putting when 'underage' drinkers are spotted on sight in TV shows, despite the people playing them blatantly being about 30? Just a thought, moving on.

We're back at the house now, and Doc Carr is looking out the window being frightened by the rain again, because she's 6years old this week, before Raxl, who is downstairs again; oh please let her run upstairs at the end of the scene; declares that she can't find Jean-Paul anywhere! This is unheard of, a grown man being out of the house in the middle of the day, what the hell is he playing at? This exchange happens;

Doc Carr: Do you think something's happened to him?

Raxl: After the curse on this house I would not be surprised!


Back at DayGlo Cafe, Holly is being given the 3rd degree by Artist Dude and Tarot Lady. Artist Dude and Holly are sceptical of Tarot Lady until she asks Holly what she's running from, and who the man is that's running after her. Then Holly looks like this

Probably wondering why everyone thinks she's underage
and we cut to Reverand Ted, because of course we cut to Reverand Ted after that question. He's on the telephone, calling in favours with the local police to track Holly down, because what self respecting stalker wouldn't use every resource at their disposal? As he's leaving to act on information received though, he's stopped by Holly's mother, noted harridan and possible sociopath. She's quick to figure out that he's going after her daughter and she isn't best pleased.

Lady all set to cut a bitch up in here
She asks how a man of God could follow a young girl; because she knows exactly what his motives are, the dirty dog; and his reply,

God is everywhere, and he will be everywhere that I am

accompanied by this expression

Smug creeper? Moi?
doesn't make him seem like a fucking nutjob at all. Oh no, nothing of the sort.

There's a bit more kerfuffle about what's best for Holly and whether he should be ashamed of himself, before she shows her true supervillain tendencies with the line

I'll fix you Reverand, and I'll fix Holly too. I have enough influence to get what I want and neither you or my Daughter can stand in the way of it.

She storms off, he picks up his suitcase and trudges off camera and I'm all but convinced that we must be heading into the closing credits because the clock is running low and the music is swelling but no, we're heading back to the house, and Raxl, who is heading downstairs...really slowly...reaaaaalllly find Doc Carr in an armchair, asleep.

She wakes Doc Car up, and the good lady Doctor declares that she doesn't have the strength to face up to what's happening and then Raxl watches, possibly fuming at her signature move being usurped as Doc Carr trudges up the stairs with her head drooped and her arms limp at her side, like a 4 year old pretending to be tired. All the way up the stairs. Every step. They filmed the entire ascent. I know because they don't fucking cut away from it once. It takes foreveeeeeerrrrrr.

And then the show ends.

Ok, seriously, I have no idea why Doc Carr is so freaked out, or why she apparently now has some weird fatigue thing going on. It's come completely out of nowhere and I'm not joking in the slightest when I say I think they forgot to film those bridging scenes I mentioned. It is just an utterly bizarre jump in the plot.

It's been a pretty disjointed episode all round really. Lots more locations than we usually get, a whole 4, maybe accounts for that; too much editing confused them in the 60's. Hopefully we'll see a little more cohesion in the next episode. Can't wait. Until then, on this blog, I am God!

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