#LovecraftCountry Episode 1 Recap: My Superheroes Are Black!
Spoilers ahead: Here’s my reaction to the HBO Lovecraft Country TV series.
FYI: I have not read the book. All information and predictions I state are based off the TV show alone unless noted.
I’m going to keep it funky with yall. Lovecraft Country wasn’t on my radar until a couple of weeks ago when people started talking about it. My curiosity was already piqued but I’m glad I waited and saw the first episode. I have so many thoughts and questions so I’ll be breaking my points down as opposed to writing a flat recap.
I’ll admit, I’m not a big horror fan. I’ve seen maybe 5 or 6 horror films in my life (not counting US and I’ll explain why in a minute) so a horror series isn’t something automatically on my to-do list but when you add the element of historical fiction, I’m all ears.
It only took a few minutes to suck me in. Initially I thought the show was going to be about Black people traveling and finding love or something based in a historical fiction frame but I got that plus horror, suspense and sci-fi.
Jackie Robinson is a Superhero
This is the shock value for me. You go from a war scene to Atticus aka Tic with an ethereal Black girl who gasps at the sight of this oversized glob of a monster with tentacles. Next thing you know, it’s the great Jackie Robinson batting that monster to smitherens with a smile. At that point, I was like holy shit, what am I watching?
Atticus was reading a book. He loves fantasy and science fiction. In fact, a lot of people who are watching this show are familiar with Lovecraft and have read his books. Once the bus he was riding on breaks down, all the white passengers are given a ride while him and another Black woman was forced to walk the rest of their trip.
White people can’t conceptualize this show in its entirety
The ode to Gordon Parks, the James Baldwin, the concept of sundown towns and racism seems to be too layered for white audiences. If you ask most Black Americans, we’d rather fight monsters than racism. Yes, racists are monsters but they are monsters that multiple and run society. On social media, white people try to compare being ridiculed for being white while living in predominantly Black neighborhoods and attending schools where they are the minority, however, there isn’t any location in America where white people collective feel unsafe. Sundown towns aren’t just limited to the South, either. They are in Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, Massachusetts and anywhere where white people live where their lives aren’t disturbed by the sight of Blackness.
There’s no damsel in distress
Don’t call her girl. Say her whole name when you are talking to her—Letitia Wright. Unlike most common stereotypes in horror, Letitia is not a damsel in distress. She’s not the love interest that’s only there to fall into Tic’s arms as they battle monsters. She’s smart. She’s also witty and the girl can run.
Shit Black people do in horror is wild different
When Letitia was running she didn’t trip or fall on a rock. Her clothes were falling off of her body like most horror scenes. She was terrified and she had a goal that she saw all the way through. When they were in the restaurant, the call of action to leave immediately wasn’t taking lightly. They didn’t stick around to see if danger was certain or not. When looking at horror through the scope of racism, we can put clues together because we are already on high alert.
What about the typical white saviors?
I’m willing to bet the white woman that stopped the racists from follow them is the same one that has Tic’s father. I’m also willing to bet that mysterious white woman is behind calling the monsters off. In additionally, I’m willing to bet she’s not even human, let alone white. I think she and the others who greeted Tic are using whiteness as a costume to blend into society.
Overall, I can’t wait until this Sunday. I think Tic has powers; powerful than an empath and maybe some telekinesis ability. I’m also interested in who he was talking to the phone who is in Korea.
What questions do you have about the first episode? Did you see something the second time that you didn’t see the first, let me know!