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‘The Mist’ Pilot – Tension, Jump Scares, And A Healthy Bit Of Gore

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After months of anticipation, ‘The Mist’ has finally descended upon Bridgeville. The first of ten episodes has aired and this is the first weekly recap and review of the episode. I’ve got high hopes for the show, the 2007 movie is in my top 5 favorite movies of all time.

“Are you mine?”

The show begins with a soldier waking up in the forest. A large dog sits next to him, panting and waiting for his owner to arise. After a look at his wallet and the dog’s tag, Brian Hunt identifies himself and Rufus The Dog. Clearly uncertain as to who he is, he gets up and goes wandering into the forest. Behind him, a thin mist follows. Before long Rufus runs barking into the dense mist and his owner follows. Unable to see where his dog is, he listens for the barks before here a cry of pain. Following the noise he finds Rufus decapitated and bloody hung over a branch.

A Short Title Sequence…

Teacher Eve Copeland is being reprimanded by the principle of Bridgeville High School. It appears that she had gone off script in a sex education class. Due to her actions, she’s been placed on administrative leave. Back at home, she discusses with her husband Kevin. He offers to go back to work at the newspaper, but Eve dismisses the idea. He sits and enjoys the view. “It’s pretty here” he claims. Unimpressed and removing a bug from her leg Eve points out “Not if you look closely.”

“He can’t hear you when you’re wearing makeup.”
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The audience is introduced to Eve and Kevin’s 16-year-old daughter Alex as the family leave the house. Nathalie, the neighbor is tending to her garden and we’re shown the Copeland’s driving to a football match whilst discussing Adrian. Alex’s makeup wearing best friend, who is in the middle of his own uncomfortable family meal. The action cuts back to the football match, where comfortable with his surrogate family Adrian exercises his American right to check out the football players bodies.

Action swaps to a woman fighting in a barn and arguing with a large man who wants to know where “it” is. She plays dumb, gets thrown to the ground and cuffed as the man answers a phone call. Using the distraction she manages to wriggle her wrists out of the handcuffs. Another fight breaks out and Mia runs the man through with a pitchfork before fleeing the scene.

Brian flee’s the forest traumatized. At a road sign, he chooses to run to Bridgeville. I have a feeling he’ll live long enough to regret this choice.

“No drinking.”

After the football match, Alex makes eyes at star football player Jay. He invited her to a party, Eve without missing a beat declines on her daughters behalf. Being 16 Alex uses this as an opportunity to sulk. Back at home, Kevin and Eve argue about her decision to say no. Kevin tries to point out that at some point Eve is going to have to let her daughter spread her wings. In between shooting him daggers with her eyes and telling him that she hates being the villain, we see a softer side to Eve. Kevin sneaks upstairs after the fight and tells Alex she has his permission to sneak out to the party. He sets some ground rules and tells her to be home by midnight.

The party is a pretty standard TV affair. Enough people there to not be happy that Adrian is there (even though he’s doing some killer dance moves and downing drinks like a pro!). There’s an inevitable altercation and Jay steps in to save the day. Afterward he apologizes for his friend’s behavior and gets Alex a drink. Breaking one of her father’s rules.

“It’s Coming!”

Brian arrives at the police station where he proceeds to act like a crazy person. Between shouting “there’s something in the mist” and trying to get guns, he finds himself quite roughly arrested and thrown into a jail cell.

Mia’s acting shady (I think I’ll be writing this a lot!). She arrives at a house and walks around before the owner comes in and tells her that the old lady who lived here died. All the possessions that were in the garage are now in a lock up and he’s not going to let her in the shed.

A New Day

The next morning dawns, and Alex isn’t in her room. After finding her in the garden and talking about her going to the party Alex reveals that she got raped. Eve is pissed at Kevin, Alex says’ that Adrian knows who did it. Kevin and Eve get into an argument about him going behind her back and letting Alex go to the party.

In the local jail, Brian is trying to explain that he doesn’t remember who he is but he know’s there’s something in the mist. The police don’t believe him and tell him they’re calling Arrowhead (connection to the book/movie!). The Copeland’s arrive and Jay is taken to the station.

Nathalie is tending to her garden as it’s invaded by toads and birds fly from the mountains overhead. Back at the station, a doctor confirms that there are traces of drugs in Alex’s system and clear signs she’s had intercourse. Back home and the Copeland’s are arguing again. Their fight is disrupted by a brick being thrown through the window. When they run outside they see “WHORE” spray painted on the road outside the house.

“I’m not sorry.”

After taking some drugs Mia decides to go back to the house from earlier in the episode. She kicks in the door of the garage and digs a hole in the ground. About 3 inches under the soil (seriously – she didn’t even need the shovel) she finds a bag filled with money and a passport. Unfortunately, the owner of the house turns up and threatens her while police sirens wail in the distance. After attempting to run, Mia gets arrested and thrown in jail. Next to Brian. Who’s still telling everyone that there’s something in the mist? (His lines must have been so easy to learn for this episode.)

As Eve’s packing a bag and telling Kevin that she’s going to her sisters without him the mist arrives in Bridgeville.

 

Nathalie and her husband are at the library where she’s looking at conspiracy theories online. They’re quite cute together and I think this is an important reminder that she’s actually quite a nice lady. Kevin arrives at the police station and has a little verbal sparring match with the sheriff/Jay’s Dad. Adrian arrives to give his statement but is stopped by a car crashing and screaming from outside.

The Mist Is Here!

Blissfully unaware that the shit is about to hit the fan, Alex and Eve are driving to the mall. Eve uses the time in the car to try to justify her 16 years as the bad cop. “Everything I do is to protect you,” she tells her daughter – who just responds by telling her that everyone in town know’s her mother was a slut in her youth. After trying to slap sense into her daughter Eve heads into the mall to get Eve’s prescription.

The police note that the mist is moving against the wind. Alex calls Kevin, who gets enveloped by the mist and his phone looses signal. Connor tells his co-worker to join them back in the station. He chooses to take a selfie instead. Instantly regretting the decision to stay outside as he’s covered in bugs. After hearing the screams, Connor orders Kevin to get in the police car. He chooses to go into the station and get Adrian instead.

Leaving the library, Nathalie and her husband get lost in the dense mist. Things pick up very rapidly here. A stranger runs past and after trying to decide if they are real or not, shoots Mr. Raven in the head before taking his own life. Nathalie finds the church and enters shell-shocked.

 “There’s something in the mist!”

In the station, Brian resists doing the I told you so dance and ask’s Kevin to release him. Adrian throws some shade at Mia, who points out that at least she’ll be able to keep them all alive. Plus there’s strength in numbers. Outside the station, Connor gets freaked out and drives off.

Inside the mall its Eve Vs Mrs. Carmody in a verbal sparring match. Eve wins. Alex, sitting outside hears screaming as the mist arrives in the parking lot. Getting out the car, she stumbles on a dead body. The power cuts out in the mall as Alex makes her way to safety. Mrs. Carmody, however, decides that she know’s best and leaves. Less than a minute later, she returns – minus a jaw to cement what Brian has been telling us for forty minutes. There’s something in the mist!

Back at the police station, Kevin is getting guns when Officer Selfie comes in. Bloodied and not himself he wrestles poor Kevin to the floor – where he’s saved by Mia shooting the cop. In the mall, Eve tells the biggest lie of the season, when she tells Alex “It’ll be fine.”

As a die-hard fan of the movie and the novella, I have been looking forward to this show since it first got announced. Naturally, I was nervous as I’ve seen Under The Dome and know what can happen when ideas deviate from the source material. I think the show did a good job of getting across that this isn’t the movie. They made some big changes such as killing Mrs. Carmody off in the pilot and altering the way the mist arrived in the town. It’s a brave decision, but ultimately I felt it worked.

Pilot Problems

I’m always very patient with a pilot episode of a show. The characters didn’t have a lot of depth, but because it’s the pilot it’s important to get the base characteristics across. In this regard, they did really well. It going to be interesting to see how they all change over the course of the season. I’m particularly interested to see how Kevin and Brian develop as the show progresses.

The episode had a high level of tension and managed to get a jump scare and a healthy bit of gore. The GCI for the mist itself wasn’t brilliant, but I was enjoying the show that much I didn’t mind.

I’m looking forward to the next nine episodes and can’t wait to see how things unfold. Check back next week for the review of episode two – “Withdrawal.”

What did you think? Will you be tuning in next week? Sound off in the comments below.

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Jamesey Lefebure
A Scotsman living in Liverpool who spends far too much time with his head in a horror book. Stephen Kings 2nd biggest fan and Wonder Woman enthusiast, I'm always happy to talk horror in any format, comics or cheesy TV.