I'm Going Back In The Hatch
by DICK CHENEY
creators Damon Lindelof & Tom Perrotta
Imagine a world in which Justin Theroux woke up and the older woman he was romancing was simply no longer there.
Jennifer Aniston went to heaven on a jet plane. In heaven she no longer has to play a stripper or prostitute in every movie, she just portrays a mature woman in her fifties who knows what she wants from life. She has been absorbed, along with 2 percent of the world's population, into an afterlife while the rest of the proleteriats go on with their earthy travails.
We never see it, but we can assume Heaven is fantastic in HBO's The Leftovers. You would think being with only virtuous people would get annoying over time, but that is not the case, because God let some assholes into heaven as well, The Leftovers informs us at length. They serve hors d'oeuvres.
Most assumed that the guys responsible for Lost would never get jobs in the industry again, but when that pitch meeting comes around, Damon Lindelof tells a compelling anecdote about how their original idea for what was in the hatch was Demi Lovato nude and tied up, but Jamie Tarses nixed it.
Given that Carlton Cuse created the masterful Bates Motel, I have forgiven the fact that he looks and sounds like a cowardly lion and I now direct all my venom towards Damon Lindelof. The Leftovers proves he was by far the weakest link in Lost besides Desmond's lackluster gf.
It is hard to imagine who The Leftovers could possibly appeal to. It makes religious people look like zany cretins who smoke cigarettes constantly, it makes kids look like sex and drug crazed infidels, it makes minorities look like ineffectual pawns and victims in a whitewashed future and it has over three dream sequences just in the first episode. No one could possibly enjoy this.
At one point Theroux's daughter (Margaret Qualley) is choking some guy while he jerks off at a party. Afterwards she discovers a dead dog in the trunk of her dad's car, which she buries with her friends. At the conclusion of this disturbing set of moments, Lynne openly wondered to me, "At least stag films have the added aspect of turning you on or making you afraid."
In the book version of The Leftovers, Theroux is very depressed that his wife (Amy Brenneman) has gone off to join the local silent cult Guilty Remnant, even though he was cheating on her with another white woman. Are you guys as tired of ww as I am? Not everyone has a white wife, I mean I do, but do I need to see my own life on television all the time? The answer is yes, but not every single time.
I identified just as well with Stringer Bell until I found out he was really British and pretending to be kewl.
The Leftovers only has one clever trick up its sleeve. In order to make the rest of the cast look like a bunch of Julliard-trained professionals, Lindelof has chosen to employ the casual acting ministrations of Liv Tyler.
Tyler portrays a woman in an unhappy engagement. She is in the car with her fiance when he starts singing. At first she laughs good naturedly, but then he goes on singing and she decides to join the religious order of fanatics who devote themselves to reminding everyone else that they were not chosen by God to serve Jennifer Aniston pain au chocolat. In the cult she meets Theroux's wife, and her real romance begins. She sounds like Arwen throughout and never changes her facial expression, even when she's taking a huge shit.
In order to assuage his feelings of loneliness and abandonment - even though no one in his family was actually even absorbed by the rapture - Theroux starts a relationship with his high school aged daughter's best friend. Fucking American Beauty. The devastating toll of boredom and cliche spawned by Sam Mendes' lack of directing talent continues to destroy lives even decades after its release.
Theroux actually overdelivers in this thankless role, but the fact that he is physically more suited to play a munchkin in the Michael Bay-directed resurrection of The Wizard of Oz hampers his credibility. Every single person in the show is taller than him, requiring more workarounds and odd angles than Tom Cruise looking up at Emily Blunt's chin. I really hope seeing this pilot is why Aniston postponed the wedding.
We all know that at the end of The Leftovers it is going to turn out that this was heaven all along, or some light at the back of the cave will be the answer to everything. Somewhere in there, Matthew Fox will be arrested for drunk driving. He could play the Devil, or alternately, he could be God. Come to think of it, this show could really use Matthew Fox: his best case scenario is portraying Jennifer Aniston's boyfriend in heaven. She deserves a good-looking guy.
Dick Cheney is the senior contributor to This Recording. He will not be recapping further episodes of The Leftovers, or even watching it all, until Liv Tyler retires from the acting profession.
"Big Girls Cry" - Sia (mp3)
"Eye of the Needle" - Sia (mp3)