I Wanna Love You: Sharp Objects, ‘Cherry’

***Spoiler Warning:  Spoilers for Sharp Objects through Episode 6 follow. Spoilers***

In an hour bookended by inquisitive, longing touches, two surviving sisters find a way to take solace in each other, skimming the edges of a horrific darkness that continues to threaten both their lives. That danger is within the house they share is obvious, its source becoming more clear with each passing episode. There are two standout hugs in “Cherry”; both feature Camille Preaker and tellingly, neither involve her mother — who peeks in on her daughters to observe the intimacy she shut herself out of. That quiet moment, apparently unnoticed by the thoroughly wasted Amma and Camille, sends proper shivers down the collective audience spine, prickling senses that have been on high alert since first we met Adora Crenlin.

The physical connection Camille allows herself with Richard visibly softens her, seemingly slows her nonstop guzzling, though old friends are happy to contribute to the cause. In other lives and places, the morning takes on a harsher light as Ann Nash’s bicycle is fished from water on Crenlin property, which prompts Camille to pose the mother of all questions — “Why would someone hide the bicycle in a shallow pool of pig shit unless they were stupid, or trying to frame someone?”

Intuitive indicators alert all across town as Richard works his own lines’ lures to mixed results. Where Jackie nibbles, then spooks off, a rehab physician will share enough information for Willis to draw correct conclusions. Adora reads Camille’s appetite equally well, which in itself, is slightly terrifying. This particular mother has her finger a little too tightly on … everyone‘s pulses.

As if reuniting with a bunch of her former fellow cheerleaders wasn’t punishment enough (“I had no idea I was so miserable until I started coming.”), Camille runs into (one of) her apologetic rapist(s), though she refuses to let him off the hook (“Well, it looks like we both got fucked.”). Broken as she may be, Camille’s strength and humor are admirable and the quiet grace with which she handles Adora (and others) is more than. To wit, the utter charm with which she drops a response when re-groveling Alan fulfills his directed duty (dropping hints about the depth of disease running through her veins): “And to think I used to regret that we didn’t communicate.”

Giving in to Amma’s party pleas, Camille goes along with her sister for the full, Oxcontin experience, where hidden truths find their way into the sunshine, as it were. Waxing philosophical about power and control, Amma lets on what Camille already knows — controlling boys is easy, it’s safer to be feared than loved … and sometimes, when you feel something bad coming your way, there’s nothing to be done but wait for it. Drifting off, swirled between memories and dream, Camille recalls a potent warning:  “It’s not safe for you here.” Truly, it’s not safe for anyone in this town.

Thoughts:

“Guess what we found today, thanks to your mom.” Everybody say “Hmm … ” because indeed, though Adora received a call alerting her to Ann’s bike turning up — and conveniently laid on John Keene by “a Mexican worker”, just how did those events come about? What does Adora know, and why exactly would she take a hand in pointing her finger a particular direction? (I’m a reader, but that is a question any viewer must be asking herself after this hour.)

Stereotypical man-thought:  Curry tells Camille, “Women don’t kill like that, violent” — but his star reporter knows better (“Until they do.”) Again, that’s not thrown in without reason. There are so many hints at a woman killer here, they can’t be ignored.

Speaking of messed up women and the malevolent maternal thread running through Adora’s veins, how about that info on Grandma Joya, Alan dropped on Camille during their little chat? “She just liked to hurt people. I just think if you knew these things, you’d be somewhat kinder to your mother.” Another hint, perhaps? Or, is it diversion? (Again, since I’m a reader, I’ll jut leave open-ended questions that I’d presume by now, viewers would be posing.) And when Amma mentions “Machiavelli”, Camille is interestingly (and unusually) caught off guard — she must realize by now how clever Amma is.

That was a beautiful moment shared between Camille and her substitute mother, Gayla in the kitchen. That women capable of showing the maternal love Camille is so desperate for (as a child [Gayla] and an adult [Eileen Curry]) are so quickly accepted and warmly treated is indicative of from where the true illness in this family resides.

This is a totally new sexual proclivity to me:  “[Gretchen told me] Lisa caught her husband jerking off on a copy of a credit card bill.” The more you know …

I’m not sure I want to know what happened to Ashley’s ear.

Music This Hour:

Boz Scaggs, Lowdown

Frank Sinatra, Call Me Irresponsible

Eugene Loner, Sunset Dance

Sage the Gemini, Don’t You

Englebert Humperdink, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You

The Acid, Ghost

Best Lines:

Adora to Camille:  “Finish your breakfast, it’s the first time I’ve seen you eat since you got here.”

Jackie to Richard:  “Well, that’s interesting.I’m not one to talk about people’s touchy areas.

Not while I’m sober, anyway.

You’re getting warmer, detective. Not just because it’s hotter than a whore in church, today.”

Adora to Camille:  “I’m your mother, not a source.”

Alan to Adora about Camille:  “You’ve more than tolerated her.”

Adora to Alan:  “Thank you, let her know how you feel about it, please.”

Becca to Camille:  “I guess we are who we were in high school.

We were so shiny, luscious on the outside. But on the inside, there’s that dark hard pit.”

Blonde chick:  There’s all this talk about god versus science, but with babies, it seems like both sides agree. The bible says ‘Be fruitful and multiply’, and then science, I mean … when it boiles down to it, that’s just what women were made for.”

Camille:  “Girl power.”

Alan to Adora:  “You were always better at handling the girls.”

Alan to Camille:  “Listen, you’re making your mother ill, and I’m going to have to ask you to leave if these conditions don’t improve.

I know how jealous you’ve always been of anyone else’s well being.”

Amma to her friends about Camille:  “We have a dead sister just like John, and she’s never ever dealt with it.”

Richard to the Chief:  “I really miss you in that Robert E Lee getup.”

Chief:  “First off I was Stonewall Jackson … I’d rather die under friendly fire than surrender a coward.”

Amma to Camille:  “Boys are easy, you just let them do stuff to you. You have the control.”

Cindy Davis

Cindy Davis

Cindy Davis has been writing about the entertainment industry for ​over eight years, and is the ​Editor-in-Chief at Oohlo, where she muses over television, movies, and pop culture. Previous Senior News Editor at Pajiba, and published at BUST.

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