Rectify 2.02 Review: “Sleeping Giants”

When looking on the surface of Rectify, one finds so many examples of some of horrors and tribulations awaiting people in life–not just extraordinary people like Daniel, but things common, more or less, to everyone. Indeed, characters will often wonder aloud about their state of affairs or those of others. In last week’s premiere, Tawney couldn’t understand how her God could let something some horrible as what happens to Daniel happen to anyone, but she specifically has trouble understanding why it happens to him. Yet, for all these honest inquiries into the darker sides of human nature and the perceived cruelty of fate (or what have you), I find Rectify to be a beautiful meditation on what makes life joyous and awesome, in the literal sense of that word. Last week, Daniel’s fantasy version of Kerwin was simply overwhelmed by that beauty. “Sleeping Giants” shows us that as well when Daniel wakes up from his coma. The overwhelming power of life makes fools of us all who revel in cynicism or even those who try to understand it and put it down into words. Maybe, then, criticism (including episodic reviews) has many formal limitations when it comes to these kinds of things. I can say, perhaps, whether that sequence is “good” or “bad” or “effective” or “poor” in terms of execution, framing, scoring, etc. But all of those avenues of analysis miss the point of it entirely, which is encapsulated in how Amantha is reduced into a mumbling mess. There is, on some level, only the intrinsic, physical reaction when faced with life’s beauty, and few shows other than Rectify manage to capture that on a television screen.



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