How we like a good mystery. In the era of the absolute success of 'true crime' as a genre of nonfiction and police reinventions under the shadow of 'Zodiac' with proposals ranging from 'Fargo' to 'True Detective', it is not surprising that a hybrid appears as interesting as 'The visitor'. The new HBO series, based on a novel by Stephen King, takes us back to the heart of the United States with a history of murders, mysteries and paradoxes altered by the presence of something paranormal. A mixture worthy of the amazing suspense of M. Night Shyamalan that every Monday is leaving us glued to the armchair (sorry: to the sofa), eager to know what is the solution to the mystery proposed by both King and the creator and screenwriter Richard Price ('The Night Of').
It only takes a few minutes of 'The visitor' to convince us that we want to know more. But, in case you lack reasons, We explore what makes this series one of the essentials of this first month of the year. Attentive.
An impossible mystery
Mozart sounds as we enter a town invaded by gray tones, where we see a trail of blood at the door of a car, a man walking his dog and finally his face of horror to find the lifeless body of a child in the middle of the forest. After this disturbing introduction, the first scenes of 'The visitor' jump between the past and the present to put us in the situation that comes upon us: police officer Ralph (Ben Mendelsohn), for whom this crime acquires a personal tone by identifying it with the case never resolved of the death of his son, he has found incontestable evidence and witnesses to arrest the one who will be converted the biggest suspect in this terrible murder.
And it's about the institute's baseball team coach, dear Terry Maitland (Jason Bateman), who is caught by surprise when he is arrested in front of the entire town during one of the matches with his team. And his surprise is more than justified: as we will see in this first episode, which sets the tone for the rest of the season, there is evidence that puts him almost 100 kilometers away from the murder at the time it happened. There are witnesses, security cameras and physical evidence in both locations. An impossible puzzle: How can a person be in two different places at the same time? What is the truth that lies behind its involvement in this terrible crime that has impacted the entire community? Could it be that they have arrested the wrong person despite having all kinds of evidence against him?
Boris SpremoGetty Images
Stephen King's legacy
The adaptations of Stephen King They should already be their own genre. In recent years we have seen more than ever an explosion of film and television projects that find their origin in the pages of his novels, from the successful 'It' (and his second installment, 'It: Part II') to 'Doctor Dream', through 'Animal Cemetery', 'The Mist', ' The Gerald game ', '22 / 11/63' or 'Castle Rock'. And all these that are still to come in the coming months and years. There is nothing. In addition, this new 'The visitor' is located in the same universe as his trilogy of 'Mr. Mercedes', something that has also been studied in relation to much of his work (the 'kingverse'), so the author's fans have a lot to scratch for connections.
Although, at the thematic level, these bridges made of similarities between some works and others have always existed: premature death, lack of protection from childhood, the shadows of deep America, addictions or paranormal touches These are some constants in his stories, including the one based on the HBO series, published in 2018. The fury that the stories of this American author have been causing for decades is no accident: there is something in his mix of terror and suspense that keeps catching us, analyzing who we are individually and collectively while we look under the bed in search of ghosts. The teacher's genius is still more alive than ever.
Building the atmosphere
If you have seen any movie of M. Night Shyamalan, you will know that the atmosphere is everything. The influence of the director of films such as 'The sixth sense' or 'The forest' can be seen in this new series not only in that distasteful taste, but also for his script twists and his flirtations with the paranormal in a hyperrealistic environment . Very similar in these coordinates to the Baztán Trilogy of Dolores Round (adapted to the cinema in 'The invisible guardian', 'Legacy in the bones' and the next 'Offering to the storm'), the paranormal meets the real through inexplicable murders invaded by spiritual forces in 'The visitor', who It will leave a place of uncertainty from the first scene.
A dialogue of just two words in front of the shattered body of a small child it gives us the creeps:
– Do not.
Evil (which is more human than we think) hides in the homes of the main families, from a detective tormented by his own losses who wants to find the truth to a group of children who believe they see an evil presence that speaks to them at night. Meanwhile, that presence that we believe is the result of nightmares appears in the corners like a ghost (or a bit like Michael Myers in 'Halloween night') as very representation of something that cannot be explained, understood and much less arrested. We do not know what the next chapters of this disturbing miniseries have for us, but we certainly want to know more.
One of HBO's big bets in 2020
In these wars for the control of streaming, HBO continues to bet on what has always characterized it: quality serophilic products. This is how 2019 was won, with award-winning and acclaimed series such as' Succession ',' Euphoria ',' Chernobyl ',' The Maid's Tale ',' Watchmen ',' Game of Thrones', 'Big Little Lies' or' Veep '. And the 2020 harvest will be no less. The platform responsible for some of the most beloved series of all time faces a very interesting year, in which they have started strong with 'The New Pope' (the continuation of 'The Young Pope') and will continue with the third season of ' Westworld ', the miniseries' La conjura contra América' or the Spanish 'Patria'.
In this context, 'The visitor' is already placed as one of his big bets. He has shown it in just a few chapters, which once again show the frightening possibilities of Stephen King's stories and his ability to make us reflect on the darkest parts of our society. But beyond the narrative, Price and his fantastic cast of actors plunge us into a mystery much more enveloping than the 'true crime' series and decidedly more open than the news to the possibility of an orphan crime of earthly explanations.
Perhaps after seeing the first chapters we begin to sleep with a half-open eye and the door tightly closed. But the road, we assure you, will have been worth it.
You may also like
About the author
Lisa has been a freelance journalist who has worked for various print magazine online. After years of spent working in the field of journalism, she took a plunge and founded Asap Land sharing the latest news bulletins from the field of Business and Technology as well as general headlines. She writes mostly the General US Headlines and Business News.