It occurred to me as I was watching this episode that I have no idea what time period this show is set in. I was under the impression the flashbacks to Dani’s time at Bly Manor meant some sort of flashback to, I dunno, the 60s at least. The house is old, there isn’t much sign of technology, and so forth.
I hadn’t really noticed that until this episode when a scene played out with what sounded like an 80s pop song playing in the background. Maybe 90s. I’m not good with music.
That song came around because it was time for…another flashback!
What do we call a flashback within a flashback? I have no idea, but here we are. We’re multiple flashbacks into this thing, and at least now I know who the ghost in the flaming glasses is. I had thought it was Peter Quint at first glance, but nope, it wasn’t. It was someone else only Dani can see.
See, before she left America, Dani was engaged to her bespectacled childhood friend Edmund, a seemingly lovely young man who…wait, I thought the show was implying Dani was gay? I am well aware that it’s not like a light switch or something, but why is Dani…
Oh, she tried to break it off because it didn’t feel right. That makes more sense. It breaks poor, confused Edmund’s heart, but then he exits their car and gets hit by a truck, the light of the truck’s headlights flashing through his large glasses, and hence the appearance of his ghost, a spirit only Dani can see and usually in a reflective surface.
Anyway, it looks like Dani tried to come out of the closet, wasn’t sure how, hurt Edmund’s feelings, and when he died, he couldn’t quite leave her alone like some sort of clingy guy who can’t take a hint. Huh, maybe that was why Dani agreed to marry the guy. She did love him, just not the way she figured a wife should love her husband.
Oh, and before the episode is over, she’ll be making out with Jamie, only to stop when she spots that bespectacled ghost watching over the two of them. So, maybe he’s a stand-in for Mike Flanagan working on Hill House watching his wife make out with other women…
Yeah, I went there.
Regardless, Dani does seem to come to some sort of détente at the end when she tosses Edmund’s glasses into a fire and finally seems to not freak out when his ghost shows up. Still, this isn’t a jumpscare kind of show. It’s a slow-creep kinda show. Like how Flora notes a faceless doll in her dollhouse is in a certain spot, causing her and Miles to go find Dani and prevent the au pair from seeing a woman in white shuffling around the house behind Dani’s back. Is that woman a ghost? Is she dangerous? What does Flora know? I can’t answer these questions…yet.