July 16, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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The Haunting Of Bly Manor “The Pupil”

Season Two, Episode Two

Part of the thing about any version of the story that is at the root of The Haunting of Bly Manor is a pair of kids who may be creepy or just have an overactive imagination.  Is young Miles Wingrave some kind of budding psychopath?  Is he just a naughty child?  Or are there ghosts hanging around the title house?

I am not sure the series is going about answering that series of questions the correct way.

See, the original story is told from the first person perspective of the nanny who either is seeing ghosts or is going insane.  Again, the story is vague on purpose.  TV doesn’t work that way, and while we saw a narrator in the first episode, who that narrator is hasn’t quite been revealed yet, but given Dani is an American and the older woman narrator didn’t seem to be, well, draw your own conclusions.

Point is, the show takes some time away from Bly Manor to give us some backstory on MIles, namely how he was expelled from a fancy boarding school six months earlier after his behavior got a little out of hand.

Dropping or falling out of a tree?  OK, that seems a bit much.

Starting fights with a classmate?  That’s a problem child.

Killing the pet dove of the priest trying to help him?  That’s serial killer behavior.

Except…Miles may have been responding to a note from his sister Flora asking him to come home in the form of a child’s drawing with two words…you know, “Come home”.

The point is, the show went out of its way to give Miles some backstory that isn’t really available to Dani, and while it isn’t a problem for an adaptation, especially one to a visual medium, to give more information about characters, it does mean it is less likely that Dani will just be seeing things.

Besides, she isn’t.  Not alone.  Those muddy footprints have been around for a while, and to punish the kids, especially Miles, she has them do chores for Hannah and new character, Jamie the dry-witted gardener.

Then Flora finds the mirror’s ghost’s broken glasses.

And during a nighttime game of hide’n’seek, Flora sings to herself while asking some woman-shaped something-or-other to please be quiet when it moves around like she’s aware it’s there, and Dani sees another ghost through a window but it isn’t there when she checks outside, only to see Miles faint.

And Miles seems to see the ghost smiling at him too.  Was Miles..acting as a distraction for the ghost?

This stuff isn’t really scary so far, more like kinda eerie.  I am not sure that will be enough, and two episodes in, I am more or less not sure where this show is going besides in the general direction of the original story only stretched out much longer than it maybe had to be.