I just finished watching the 7th episode of Castle Rock. I watched the 5th last night and then I watched the 6th and 7th in succession today. I almost stopped watching midway through the 7th, but I persevered. It's not that I don't like it; I'm just not accustomed to watching for that long at a time. My mind wanders; my natural tendencies as an empath make it uncomfortable to watch that much at one time. It's exhausting.
I'm glad I finished the 7th episode of the first season, though. Titled, The Queen. The main character is Ruth and she uses chess pieces to try to help herself keep grounded. We are given to understand that she has dementia, and she explains to her grandson what it's like getting lost in time. Is it today? Is it 40 years ago? It all runs together for her.
The imagery brings home how she feels. For instance, the cinematography focuses repeatedly on the newel post of the staircase where it turns the corner. The finial is the focus, with the front door in the near distance, out of focus. The same setting is used in different decades - the same place but different times, the different times Ruth is lost in.
Another example: How many times have I had a dream where I'm running from something, typically something that is trying to hurt or kill me, and my feet are heavy? It's like running through water and I ultimately realize that I cannot move. The thing chasing me is uninhibited, and the situation is just plain unfair. In one scene Ruth is trying to run. She finds herself in her home after her husband's funeral and she is hampered by the crowds. She struggles to squeeze through them, but every time she gets through and into the clear, she's trapped between people again; people who are standing around, talking and don't seem to notice that she's desperately trying to get through. I felt the same anxiety that I feel in those dreams that I have, and this scene was done absolutely perfect.
The Queen could be watched as a stand-alone show. You wouldn't necessarily even realize that there were episodes before and after it. Of course you'd know things happened before, but any good work of writing gives you that feeling. The unknown, here, enhances the story. You'd feel a little lost, and that is the point. You'd feel like you'd missed something, something to make it all make sense. But, this one wasn't supposed to make sense. If you haven't seen any of Season One, I encourage you to start with this one.
I have two more episodes to watch before I'm caught up. I have things to do around the house tonight, but I'll get these two out of the way before Wednesday when the next one comes out. I think that this Wednesday is the last - for the season, anyway. Here I am playing catch-up. The story of my life.