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The Leftovers, Episode 8: Who Wants to Play Trouble?

s1e8-scott6:50 p.m.

Welcome back, everybody. It’s been a cool weekend. For one, I got to catch up with an old friend Snake Plissken (This is an awesome trailer BTW).

That movie takes place in the future, which is supposed to be 1997. I mean, I guess they weren’t really that far off with what 1997 was going to look like…except they didn’t account for Hansen.

I can’t believe it’s almost fall; this summer has flown by, but at least that means that football is around the corner as well as the new fall schedule of TV shows. Thank god they have a new CSI show coming out, taking place in New Orleans, because that is what we all need in our lives…the 18th CSI show that will be on television. What does that say about the majority of us out here… that we’re all mindless idiots that like completely rubberstamped, repetitive shows? Who’s to blame for these networks continuing to pump out these same shows over and over again? I know it’s not me. It’s you, isn’t it?…or maybe your uncle?…Yeah, it’s your uncle I bet. Tell your uncle if I see him I’m going to look him right in the eyes and punch him right on his stupid chin. I want all these procedural cop dramas to end, please!

I’m getting worked up, so let’s move on to The Leftovers, which is why we are all here. Last week was a pretty interesting episode with some craziness unfolding literally and figuratively. Let’s quickly guess what’s going to happen tonight with the major characters on the show:

Kevin: Last week he rejected a sweet National Geographic magazine from his nutty father that was apparently supposed to have some hidden meaning. I’m guessing this week it’s going to be more of the “fever” dreams he’s been having that have possibly been showing the future of things to come. And I think he gets a barb-wired tattoo around his arm to match the awful tat he has on his back.

Laurie: I think will continue to smoke cigarettes and will continue to have that look of fear and bewilderment every time she sees Liv Tyler’s acting. I don’t have a good feel of what her arc will be this season other than growing more independent from her previous life.

Nora: Will hire a hooker this time to fire an arrow at an apple that rests on top of her head…this time while Bryan Adams’ “Everything I Do” plays in the background.

Jill Garvey: Will continue to pattern her performance after Darleen from Rosanne. I mean, seriously has there ever been an unhappier teen in the history of TV? Maybe her arc this season will be to find some joy, but I don’t think it will happen tonight.

Holy Wayne: We find out that his patron saint is Michael Jackson and he gets his “powers” from him, specifically from watching Captain EO every night.

Tom Garvey: Will continue to be the Macaulay Culkin to Wayne’s M.J. It seems that he’s got to play a part tonight as when we last left him, he discovered that the girl he’s protecting gave birth in a bathtub, which… I’m  sorry… is just gross!

Meg (Liv Tyler): Will continue to be unlikable and not have any engaging plot angles to grab the viewers, other than being maybe the weakest link acting-wise since Shannon on Lost.

With all that positivity, let’s get on to the show as it’s 7 p.m. Portland Oregon time.

7 p.m.

We start like always with the “previously on” clips. Is this the night that the good sheriff sleeps with his daughter’s friend in a drunken blackout? We know it’s coming.

7:01 p.m.

We see that Lassie (the random dog that the sheriff got last week) is still tied up in the backyard. Over/under on Lassie’s death is three episodes and I think I will take the over on that actually. We get dueling clips of the sheriff and the leader of the white gang Patti, montaging it up as they get ready to face the day.

7:03 p.m.

Patti asks Laurie if she is “ready” as she takes out a fat stack of money. Laurie seems on board and I’m guessing whatever it is that this group is about to do is going to piss off the town.

7:05 p.m.

Nora, post hook-up with Kevin, is looking healthier as she comes out of the house with Rice Crispy Treats and offers some to Liv Tyler, who is really overacting with her “ I’m in the white gang and you’re supposed to hate me, not offer me treats” look on her face. Yes, I know I’m being hard on Liv but honestly I have to call ’em like I see ’em.  We join Nora as she joins Kevin and Jill for dinner. Kevin, I think says, “Jill, this is going to be your new mommy.” Very touching moment, but it gets ruined as Jill gives Nora the 3rd degree about the gun that Nora used to carry in her purse. It would be great if she did have a gun and they broke into a Russian roulette game like the one in The Deer Hunter.

7:10 p.m.

We see Kevin falling asleep and we know something odd is about to happen and on cue he wakes up in the passenger side of a car with America’s favorite dog hunter. He walks up to a cabin that looks identical to the one in Lost when Locke finds Claire in a rocking chair.

Wow! Just like Lost, there’s a rocking chair that is randomly being occupied by Patti. So help me god, I’m going to freak out if dog hunter dude tells Kevin that he’s going to have to move Mapleton with a donkey wheel. The parallels with Lost and this show are there you have to admit.

7:13 p.m.

After the credits roll, we join Jill as she goes into her father’s room but he’s gone and again Aimee is there and is acting knowingly, which seems to be her thing.

We immediately go from that to Liv Tyler shouting and beating up the minister. Laurie drags her into the house and in sign language tells her to shut the eff up. Everybody in the house looks annoyed.

7:15 p.m.

Back to the cabin in the woods with Kevin as he wants to know what happened last night as he doesn’t remember. Dog hunter tells him that last night they met at a bar, saw Patti in the street looking awful and they threw her in the van.  I’m again wondering if this dog hunter is real. Does anybody else share this opinion?

Dog hunter reveals that Kevin ended up with a dog because he made a bet that if he could civilize the dog, then dog hunter can’t be a dog hunter anymore. They go to check on Patti who spits in Kevin’s face and tells him that she will press charges against him. Looks like she is daring them/him to kill her.

7:20 p.m.

Laurie tries to get Liv Tyler to hype the eff down. Liv is acting like she is not cut out for this life of whiteness. Laurie takes Liv to the minister’s house where the other guests in the house include Nora and the minister’s comatose wife. Nora makes a snide remark to Laurie about seeing her daughter. This might turn into Fight Night in Mapleton this evening.

7:23 p.m.

Jill, Aimee, and the Winklevoss twins are all smoking a joint at the park, but Jill is “harshing their mellow” as the kids say, as Jill angrily discusses Nora’s having a gun. Jill then lashes out at Aimee, accusing her of sleeping with her dad. Jill is just ruining everybody’s good times tonight, as Aimee storms off and Jill resumes her smoking of the pot.

7:25 p.m.

Back in the cabin, Kevin informally starts interrogating Patti. I will say that Patti does acknowledge the dog hunter, but it was in a way that can be later shown as the sheriff being crazy if they decide to take that angle with the show. She says dog hunter is a ghost in a matter of speaking. What is going on? Is this a dream; is this real? Is dog hunter real? I really have no idea. Dog hunter basically tells him that there are two Kevins so-to-speak. He says, “Go to the truck, get comfortable, and close your eyes because I need to talk to the other guy.”

This is like Secret Window with Johnny Depp, where he plays an author who gets visited by this creepy guy (spoiler alert coming) who kills his dog and does other horrible shit and we later find out it was really just Johnny Depp all along who was just super-crazy and made up the person in his head. That could be the plotline here, but that would seem pretty obvious at this point.

7:30 p.m.

Jill and the Winklevosses break into Nora’s house to look for her gun, so Jill can be proved right I guess. It would be really awesome if Nora had her house set with Home Alone-like booby-traps:

Jill somehow finds the gun hidden in a game of Trouble. She starts crying. I really wish she would pull the trigger on herself. Jill and the twins leave the house. We’re not sure if she grabbed the gun yet.

7:34 p.m.

Back with Kevin as he leaves a message for Nora telling her that he messed up. We see some white clothes on a tree and a pair of shoes on the ground, followed up with other pieces of white clothes on all the trees in the area. It looks like the white shirt is actually one of his as it has the Mapleton police emblem on it. Is everybody else lost right now? He goes to the cabin to find Patti with a bag over her head now. He fights with dog hunter and saves Patti. Dog hunter tells Kevin he is on his own now. Right now I think dog hunter is not real. This opinion will probably change in ten minutes.

7:38 p.m.

Liv Tyler keeps talking out loud with Laurie telling her to shush. Liv keeps on talking and so finally Laurie takes one for the team and slaps her right in her face as everybody at home watching stands up and claps. They get a delivery which accounts for the money we saw at the beginning of this episode. We don’t see what got delivered, but we do see a room that is filled with clothes of all types laid out like all they’re missing is a body inside of them. God knows what this kooky gang is up to.

7:41 p.m.

Nora gets home and discovers that Jill left the gun out on her bed with the game of Trouble left out. Maybe it will be like one of those epic chess games that can go on for days at a time. Nora and Jill playing Trouble could be like a spin-off…I know I would watch.

We next join Jill as she walks in her house where Aimee has gathered her belongings and tells her thanks for letting her stay there, but she is staying with another friend for a little while. Jill then goes outside and sets Lassie free…pretty productive day for Jill.

7:45 p.m.

Back at the white house, people are starting to worry about Patti’s whereabouts. Laurie tells them that everything is still going on no matter what. She goes over and sits in Patti’s Godfather-like desk, almost like she is dethroning her. And wow! Look who comes to the white house and asks to stay the night, none other than Jill! Very interesting…

7:47 p.m.

For someone whose life hangs in the balance, Patti seems pretty damn mouthy, as she continues to tell Kevin that she is going to ruin his life for this. She goes on to lecture Kevin on why he is an idiot. She reveals that she was the one to kill Gladys (the white gang member killed with rocks). Patti shares that Laurie’s death is coming soon too and that she is OK with it. She starts quoting a Yeats poem and tells Kevin that basically he should kill her. Kevin is like us, the viewers, as he has no idea what the hell she is talking about. He cuts her lose, but she grabs a shard of glass and cuts her own throat.

The end…Ladies and gentleman, we have ourselves a crazy show. What the hell!


OK…I’m kind of reeling from this episode. Let’s get the easy stuff out of the way first. So Jill who is desperately trying to figure out why her mom chose the white gang over her family has made the decision to check out the white gang lifestyle for herself. Whether this is just a reconnaissance mission or a true life change remains to be seen. I’m leaning towards her stay at the white house being a short one. I’m sure I will be wrong, but right now that is my gut feeling.

The cabin plot this episode revealed some huge things… one being that Patti and other white gang members were behind that gruesome stoning. Why? I still don’t get it. Patti said something about Gladys now being talked about and remembered. Is the white gang mission statement just being about its members getting attention? Can somebody who understands this please explain it to me?

We’re back to not knowing what is up with Kevin. He closes his eyes and strange shit happens. Nobody can definitively say whether the dog hunter is real or just a part of Kevin’s personality. I really don’t know. Can we get a scene of him having coffee at Starbucks with Aimee or something to spell it out?

Overall, this episode really took us down the road I’ve wanted the show to go down, the mystery road. The first three episodes were too depression-focused for my liking, but the last four episodes have steered this show towards a more engaging place for viewers. For the first time, I feel like I could actually go to work tomorrow and want to talk to somebody else who watched tonight to get their opinions and theories on the show. I think, if nothing else, the show has reached that point where people will actually be talking at the water cooler tomorrow about The Leftovers. For that, you’ve got to give kudos to the show for proving that it might actually have some legs.