TV Review: Cult Season 1 Episode 5
Hmm, things are starting to pick up.
We’ve got our first CW trademark party episode, our leads finally mashing their mouths together, and crazy Cult fans affecting the show’s cast.
We’re gettin’ there, guys. We’re gettin’ there.
TL;DR Skye and Jeff’s relationship kicks off, Marti is attacked by a crazed fan, and it turns out the True Believers are not all murder and kidnapping.
They still do some kidnapping, though.
The plot takes a turn this episode and mostly eschews the reality/TV show split that we’ve seen so far, focusing mostly on reality. After a brief Cult intro showing Kelly’s marriage (?) to Billy, we get to the major thread of the episode: the studio is throwing a party for Cult fans. Initially reluctant to go, Jeff is brought in as Skye’s +1 because he’s on the trail of one of Nate’s buddies. Who, surprise surprise, is a True Believer. At the party, Skye accidentally consumes a drugged drink from the Cult makeup artist (bitch parties hard), which leads to some intoxicated flirting between our 2 leads. This culminates in a kiss (as per the episode’s title, “The Kiss”). Aww. While on the trail of Nate’s friend, Jeff also runs into FemCop, and lets her know he knows about her. Meanwhile, Marti has to give a private set tour to a fan. Shockingly, he turns out to be crazy, but Marti is saved in time by Jeff and the True Believers (including Nate’s friend). FemCop tells him to fuck off for his own safety. Meanwhile, Roger continues his relationship with Evil Waitress. He also comes into contact with a fan. Who turns out to be in league with Evil Waitress, FemCop and the True Believers.
Can you feel the conspiracy? It’s just so subtle.
Look, you know what? This is the first episode where the show’s really felt whole. It’s still shallow as fuck, but there’s a cohesion here that has been missing so far.
I think the proper incorporation of both Marti and Roger into some real plotlines is responsible for that.
But, this is still a young CW show, so it’s nothing special. The worst aspect of this episode is that nothing really happens. A lot of time and energy is spent chasing after Nate’s friend, which doesn’t really pay off. The point that the plot is trying to make is about the True Believers’ serious duty to keep Cult operating (which, naturally, involves protecting the actors). But they could have done that with any of the established True Believers (Evil Waitress, FemCop), or just not used a featured character at all.
It’s just treading water. And it is obvious.
Why I hate this episode:
The party doesn’t really live up to CW glory, either. Remember Gossip Girl’s parties? Those were the days.
It’s also a costume party. But there is zero variety in costumes. Everyone is either Billy, Kelly in her white dress from the episode shown this week (although I did see a rogue Cop Kelly) or the green dress from Kelly’s sister character. That’s pretty much it. And it shows.
The kissing contest is pretty piss-poor. For fanatic cosplay weirdos, these people kiss very conservatively. Even Skye isn’t too sloppy, and she’s fucking wasted as shit. As a frequent binge drinker (though maybe that Cult acid is different), I can tell you that this ain’t realistic.
Skye’s creepy cowoker pops up a couple of times, but does absolutely nothing. Whatever.
Makeup girl fucking gives Skye the drugged drink like it ain’t no thang. What the fuck, bitch? Rude. And Skye and Jeff’s reaction is surprisingly nonchalant. At least go try and puke it up or something.
The private set tour thing was obviously going to be a bad idea. Yeah, Marti had a bodyguard, but still.
Oh, and FemCop gives Jeff a URL after they kidnap and release him following the attack on Marti. It shows Nate pleading for Jeff to stop looking for him. Yeah, like that worked before.
Reasons to watch:
And it’s nice to have all our main characters in the same place.
The introduction of a proper plot line this episode for Marti was what I’ve been waiting for. And it’s a good one. Not only does it show her first-hand what kind of fans are out there, it also moves the True Believers’ plot forward. They’re not just evil nutjobs. They’re here to protect the show.
This comes across as well in the subplot between FemCop and Nate’s friend. He’s going around passing out acid tabs and shit so he can have a good time. FemCop pulls him up and bitches at him for not taking his role seriously. Some humanisation for the True Believers was just what they needed.
And they even save Marti from wackjob tour guy. And then show some mercy to Jeff. Layers, man.
Jeff and Skye’s relationship is all but official now. I liked that Skye finally took the initiatvie. Even if it was motivated by accidental drug use. They’re both hot, so why not?
Evil Waitress has really got her claws into Roger. And with Stuart (the handsome fan of Roger’s earlier work), things are starting to shape up.
Roger, reiterating his non-Billyness from episode 2, shows genuine outrage over the attack on Marti. Good man.
Best line of the episode goes to Marti, who refutes wackjob tour guy’s assertion that Cult is swimming in deep subtext: “Subtext? Seriously, it was just Billy being Billy.” Just relax and enjoy the flashiness. CW style.
Her attack is legit scary. Bitch gets choked and everything. Wackjob tour guy even calls her Kelly. I felt anxious for her.
Oh, and Alona Tal looks fucking amazing in the party scenes. It’s like she’s barely aged at all since her Veronica Mars days. That bitch.