Comic-Con@Home: 'Lovecraft Country' trailer sees gnarly Cthulhu’s big entrance, classic Lovecraftian visuals
Following up on the short teaser trailer for 'Lovecraft Country', the creators of the series released an extended trailer at the online Comic-Con event. The key visual for Lovecraft fans comes right at the end in a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment. It is the monstrous cosmic entity Cthulhu, unfurling its many-tentacled body with wings as his teeth descend on Atticus Freeman (Jonathan Majors) and Letitia (Jurnee Smollett-Bell).
The first lines of the trailer itself set up Atticus as someone who wants to be like the male lead of pulp novels, "who go on adventures, kill the monsters and save the day". Of course, the monsters in the Jim Crow era could range from a racist sheriff to an otherworldly creature that makes your whole car "go bump in the night". In fact, Atticus tells Letitia that "there are monsters all around us" and he's doing something (that is obviously crossing a line) to "protect us". Which monsters he is referring to, human or otherworldly, is a little less clear.
We see some classic Lovecraftian horror visuals done well like a street poster's eyes suddenly shifting to look at a window shopper. There is also the disturbing sight of a little girl with red ribbons in her hair who is actually a demon with long sharpened teeth and a bloody mouth. We also see Ruby Dandridge (Wunmi Mosaku), Letitia’s hustler half-sister drinking a magic potion that according to an interview with Mosaku, turns her character into a White person.
We also see some advanced magical rituals being orchestrated by people in pointy black hoods (always a bad thing). They look like they belong to a secret magick society, straight out of a Dan Brown book or transported from a ritual on 'Eyes Wide Shut'. Letitia seems to have an inkling of what is going on when she says, "there is something here that is trying to get out".
The trailer also shows some pretty authentic details about Black lives during the era, showing scenes from Atticus and Letitia's childhood. From the earlier trailer, we know Atticus is going on the road trip to find his missing father and also that he has a "secret birthright" that has been kept from him.
We see Atticus interacting with a young blonde man at an upscale house party who tells him patronizingly that "just because they don't want you here doesn't mean you are not supposed to be." He also seems to be connected to Abbey Lee's character, Christina Braithwhite, who tempts him with "unmitigated power." To a powerless Black man in 1950s America that sounds like a dream come true -- but is it actually a nightmare?
The trailer seems to show Atticus at the center of some bizarre ritual and since it's an occult ritual in a show called 'Lovecraft Country', chances are it will bring forth the terrifying Cthulhu we see in the closing moments of the show.
The brief glimpse of the monster shows that the show is not going leave us hanging, waiting for the "Big Bad" of Lovecraftian horror to show up. The CGI looks good and keeps all the visual details popularly associated with Cthulhu intact, from the leathery wings to the vaguely octopus-like shape and not to forget the teeth -- so many teeth. After all, if you are bringing a cosmic entity to life on-screen, you might as well do a good job.
'Lovecraft Country' premieres on HBO Max on August 16 at 9 PM.