HBO's 'Sharp Objects': Roses are red and so are blood and guts
As the town of Wind Gap gets stranger by the episode in Amy Adams starrer 'Sharp Objects,' Fix' gives us further insight into the seemingly quiet life of Camille Preaker's hometown
"How does it feel to be home?"
"Easy. Every day is a gift."
Wind Gap gets stranger by the episode in Amy Adams starrer 'Sharp Objects.' From creepy slaughterhouses to strange parking lots that transform into party central at night, this show is turning out to be a hell of a thriller. Crime reporter Camille Preaker is nowhere close to knowing who the killer is but one thing is for certain - no one can be trusted in this dead little town. 'Sharp Objects' like I said the last time, is much more about broken people doing broken things and much less about the murder - although the toothless bodies tossed into the forest like logs of wood does weave nicely into the story. 'Fix' gives us further insight into the seemingly quiet life of Preaker's hometown.
There's a trench-like silence between the two generations in this town. While the older folks are stunned at the monstrosity of the crime, the younger folks seem quite disinterested. Is it because they know more or is it because they are still naive? Are the fathers, brothers, and mothers worried about secrets spewing out like vomit to the outsiders or are they just coming to terms with the fact that one of them could have done it? It's hard to tell. Every character in the show has many layers to them - especially the Preaker family.
At one point you think Adora is a trying mother, who failed at being one, and then you see her as a disturbed adult who blames all of her mistakes on Camille, irrespective of the facts. One thing is for certain, this show is, unfortunately relatable. Because that is what the world does to problematic, "wild" girls doesn't it? Label them as "dangerous," find a psychiatric hospital to dump them in never asking the question why. Camille Preaker is a tarnish on Adora's flawless reputation, the nosy reporter who just won't back away from the place she calls home.
Adora's character is explored much deeper in 'Fix.' Controlling, cold, calculated yet terrified of life, Camille's mother goes around town making everyone's business her own. Patricia Clarkson's bang on performance makes her even more maddening. Her hair is always set, her hat is always in place and her mouth always curved in a disappointing pout. Her appearance whistles the story of Wind Gap like the song in Camille's car, as she's speeding along the highway, drunk out of her mind - because all is well in this town, on the surface, at least.
We see a blossoming relationship between Amma and Camille, and although for a second you may feel like you've finally found something sweet as Adora's roses in the story, her lies prick you hard. There's something dark festering in this teen's life, and as Camille rightly fears, she knows more than she should. She's slippery - one minute she's resting her head on her mother's lap letting her braid her long golden locks, the next she's in a crop top, seductively sucking on a lolly asking Detective Willis to take her "on a ride." To say she's troubled is an understatement but what is confusing is how Camille cannot figure out why she is acting out.
'Fix' continues to show us the cutting. From the flashbacks, 'Sharp Objects' tells us that Camille had been a witness to a suicide of a young girl, roughly Amma's age in the hospital, years ago. Her guilt and trauma is raging and then comes the cutting. Quite symbolically, she leaves Camille a rose before she swallows toilet cleaner and takes her own life. What Camille does after witnessing the sight is shocking - she unscrews the bolt off the toilet seat that she's throwing up in and slashes her already lacerated wrists.
My demons are not remotely tackled, they’re mildly concussed. pic.twitter.com/J8MsJxHaKf— HBO (@HBO) July 16, 2018
More than pain in her heart, it is guilt in Camille's mind. Deep down, she's guilty of escaping, of making a life far away from home and of surviving. She commanded your empathy till 'Dirt,' but 'Fix' shows you that she's just as responsible for her pain as everyone who has inflicted it on her and she knows it. At this point, she knows she drinks too much, and she knows she needs to deal with her pain, yet when she goes to John Keene's house for an interview, she refuses to have a drink. She's been running around town drunk all the time, literally, and she feels the need to hide it right at this point. Hypocrisy is a shade that we hadn't seen from Camille, but the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, does it?
When Amma meets her in the parking lot as she's having a moment with Willis, she is beyond traumatized by her sexualized tones, and you see a flicker of deja vu in her eyes. She knows Amma is headed down the same path. If she feels the need to rescue Amma further down the story, remains to be seen.
Roses are another tool used to amplify the sinisterness of 'Fix.' While the flower is a universal symbol of love and affection, here every time we see a rose - it reminds us of blood. The deep red of the insides of the dead girl at the clinic matches the red of the bushes that Amma crashes into. They are the same red on Adora's lips and the one that drips down Camille's arm. The question is - where do these bloodlines meet? - because if we listen to Bob Nas, "Women around here, they don't kill with their hands — they talk, and you’re dead."
Catch 'Sharp Objects' on HBO every Sunday at 9 pm.