July 13, 2024

Gabbing Geek

Your online community for all things geeky.

The Haunting Of Bly Manor “The Romance Of Certain Old Clothes”

Season Two, Episode Eight

Wait…was that…something actually cool?

I didn’t expect that at all.

Yeah, we got another good episode.  After that rather interesting look into the afterlife of Hannah Grose, we get the Secret Origin of Bly Manor.  Shot mostly in black and white and with another Hill House veteran in a prominent role, we finally get an explanation for the Lady in the Lake and why everything in the house is the way it is.

It seems that, once upon a time, there were a pair of sisters living in the house when their father died.  This was one of those cases where a woman couldn’t inherit the estate, so to stay there or at least continuing to exist in the lifestyle to which they were accustomed, they’d need to marry a wealthy man.  Enter a distant cousin set to inherit Bly Manor, and younger sister Perdita takes a shine to him, and the thing was mutual.

But then in comes sister Viola, played by that Hill House veteran Katie Siegel.  Man, Mike Flanagan will slip his actress wife into anything…

But see, Viola slips into stuff too because she’s a strong willed woman, so soon she marries the distant cousin, but she gracefully allows Perdita to stay with them.

Much of what happens here comes down to just how strong-willed Viola is.  Not long after giving birth to a daughter of her own and sensing her husband and sister may be…looking at each other, she gets tuberculous.  And…she refuses to die, staying alive and coughing up blood for years through sheer force of will.  Why, it would take an outside force to end her life.  And after years of abuse, Perdita does just that while the man of the house is away on business.  She then marries him, and all that is left of Viola is a chest full of linen and jewels she got her husband to promise would go to her daughter.

Naturally, during financial hardship, Perdita decided to go through the stuff, and that would be when the wedding dress murdered her.

See, that strong force of will also kept Viola from going to whatever comes after this life, so her ghost still wandered Bly Manor.

And since her husband found Perdita dead by the chest, he did what any reasonable man would do and decided it was cursed, so he tossed it into the lake and moved the hell out of Bly.

Now, every so often, Viola’s ghost wakes up, exits the lake, and goes on a walk to her daughter’s old room.  And, if anyone gets in her way, she murders that person.  No other reason.  She just does it to anyone who happens to be there.  And that strong will of Viola’s means people who die in Bly, even if she didn’t personally murder them, stick around.  And as Viola forgot who she was, her face faded, and so did all the other ghosts’.

See, that’s some good, gothic ghost story stuff going on.  It was moody, effective, and it even had a good jump scare when the dress grabbed Perdita by the throat.

Granted, I have no idea how that mystery narrator knew all that, but here we are.