TV: Bedlam 1.5


Three scary TV shows are premiering this month: 
Bedlam (Saturdays on BBC America starting 10/1), American Horror Story (Wednesdays on FX starting 10/5) and season two of The Walking Dead (Sundays on AMC starting 10/16). Every week I’ll post recaps shortly after each new episode airs. They’ll be a little different than my movie posts. I’m assuming anyone who’s reading the recap has already seen the episode or isn’t planning to watch. That is to say, *SPOILERS AHEAD.*

The penultimate Bedlam shockingly begins with yet another random, one-off character. Hi, Mark! So nice to meet you! This time they don’t even bother establishing his relationship with the flatmates, they just introduce him as Jed’s friend even though they’ve apparently only just met. I guess that’s cheap but I’m too grateful for the expedience to care.

I refuse to invest in you, Mark.

Mark hears what he thinks are mice in the walls and some crazy bird keeps calling to say, “Don’t leave me.” That’s exactly why you never give out your real number. He’s not nearly worked up enough when she continues to call even after he yanks the phone line out of the wall. Jed goes to investigate his new pal’s supposed mouse problem and finds the words “DON’T LEAVE ME” scratched into the wall of the vacant apartment next door. The ghost also left some nice flower petals, making it the most decorative spirit so far. When Jed lays on the magic hands, the flowers show him a pair of Elizabethans going at it hot and heavy against a wall. I love historical porno.

Fantastic news! Kate gets suffocated by a bunch of dead girls led by Zoe. Sadly it’s only a dream but I’ll take what I can get. This prompts Kate to finally get her ass in gear and look into the missing women. Jed’s spiritual advisor (ha!) leaves him a note on the computer saying “KATE KNOWS”, which I take to mean either Kate knows her dad is involved in the disappearances, or she knows he’s been masturbating in the shower.

Kate’s digging leads her to a blueprint of the building, which miraculously takes her straight to the doorless room Jed found earlier. She confronts her dad about the wasted space and he tells her he wants it left that way. Presumably that’s the room Kate’s been seeing in her dreams, can’t wait to see what’s inside.

Women can't read blueprints, don't be ridiculous.

Ryan comes to useless, unemployed Molly with some news about Jed’s lineage. Why he needs Molly’s take on it is beyond me but he shows her an old photo of Jed’s mum with some guy. They determine the best course of action is to play detective rather than clue Jed in, a decision that I’m sure won’t piss off the even-keeled Jed in the slightest.

Right, one of those special Polaroids. The kind printed on cardstock.

Jed keeps repairing the wall of the apartment next to Mark’s, only to have the ghost repeat her message again and again. Maybe he gets paid by the hour. She even surrounds it with a nice collage made from Mark’s photo album, though she does scratch out everyone’s faces. Should have digitized those old photos. Now they’re RUINED.

This is the last time, promise.

In between spackling attempts, Jed follows Warren (Kate’s dad, whose name I only just learned) to the incinerator room where he deposits a garbage bag. Jed thinks this is proof positive of murder, I think the man just dropped a bag of trash off on his way out. Kate catches Jed snooping and sends him back to work, though clearly she thinks her pop is up to something, too.

Jed figures out that the ghost haunting Mark is the mistress of a 19th century Bettany, who had her locked up so he could get married. Poor lady still loved him so he kept right on banging her in the asylum even while he was married. That’s some cold shit. When he finally left her for good, she killed herself.

I am unhappy about my current situation!

This is mirrored by Mark’s ex, Sarah, who also killed herself when he tried to end it. Interestingly Mark didn’t mistreat Sarah, he just wasn’t aware of the severity of her depression. These ghosts are assholes sometimes. Mark is ready to leave for a new job in Australia but of course Jed gets called away just before he can see Mark off safely.

Molly and Ryan find the guy from the photo, who was a nurse in the ’80s. He confirms their suspicions that Jed’s mom wasn’t pregnant when she entered Bedlam in graphic fashion: while in the asylum she was raped daily by multiple staff members, so many he didn’t even know all their names. That’s why no one took her to the hospital when she went into labor. Complications arose and both mom and baby died, though baby Jed was revived after three minutes on the other side. That’s fucking horrible but Ryan and Molly barely blink, which is typical of this show. Before he kicks them out, the old nurse mentions Caleb Bettany but won’t say any more. Is that Warren’s dad?

Yeah yeah, brutal sex crimes. What else?

When they return, Jed enlists Ryan’s help to dig up the 18th century Bettany and drop his remains into his mistress’ grave, which I guess will satisfy her because she just needed a good boning? My question is, wouldn’t that piss off the ghost of dead Bettany’s wife, causing her to haunt someone else? These are the things I think about.

They accomplish the task of excavating two six-foot-deep graves, in the dark, in record time, but it’s still not fast enough. The ghost smothers poor Mark, making him the show’s first death-by-haunting. Poor guy didn’t even do anything wrong. This makes Jed sad.

Yes, your life is horrible, you beautiful, beautiful person.

Afterward Jed and Ryan have a pow-wow about what went down but Ryan still doesn’t bother to mention the whole “your father was a gang rape” thing. He’s probably saving it for the moment it can do the most emotional damage. After they’re done lamenting poor Mark, Jed returns to the flat. Kate has discovered Zoe’s necklace in the furnace and now agrees with Jed that the only possible explanation is that her dad is a really, really careless serial killer. Too bad she doesn’t show Jed the necklace because then he could touch it and know for sure. Even more too bad they don’t, you know, call the police, because withholding material evidence in a murder investigation is probably not a great idea. Then they make out and I throw up in my mouth.

Make sure you brush your teeth after.

So while it seems like we have a lot of ground to cover in next week’s season finale, really there are only two questions that need to be answered: did Warren kill Zoe, and what’s in that secret room? If I had to guess I’d say Warren didn’t kill anyone, though he’s probably concealing a much bigger secret. As for the room, it’s most likely the place Zoe’s been seeing in her dreams, which appears to be a small examination room, probably used for whatever ghastly experiments took the lives of the missing girls. I hope they don’t waste time introducing another single-episode character, there’s simply no need. More than that, I hope that if this show gets a second season they loosen up the formulaic episode structure and try to make at least a few of the characters reasonably likable.

2 Responses to “TV: Bedlam 1.5”

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