Well, that’s the end of that. That was…fine I suppose.
I’ve had some time to think about why The Midnight Club didn’t work for me as well as the other Mike Flanagan-produced Netflix mini-series. Setting aside the fact that this final episode ended with moments that were clearly meant to set up a second season that ain’t happening, I could just say that I wasn’t part of the target audience and leave it at that.
But I don’t think that’s entirely the problem. True, much of what happened was clearly stuff aimed at a young adult audience, and that’s fine. It’s just also the sort of stuff that usually doesn’t work for me. I generally liked Locke & Key, but the first season’s high school romance and social problems stuff left me a bit cold. That show generally abandoned that stuff the further it went, or at least mixed in enough of the horror/fantasy elements I much preferred, but the point stands. I don’t care for teenage romance plots in TV shows.
However, I came across some commentary, I don’t even remember where off-hand, that said that while the commentator felt The Midnight Club was fine enough entertainment, based off Mike Flanagan’s previous work, the commentator thought The Midnight Club was going to be a lot more gritty. It wasn’t. Even for a show about teenagers dying of various diseases in a hospice, where two characters succumbed to their illnesses even if one was a very minor character, it wasn’t particularly dark or gritty. Contrast The Midnight Club to, say, Midnight Mass, and while both series ended on some sort of oddly beautiful note where the characters all came together to hold some sort of fellowship, Midnight Mass is a group of people, many of whom did some vile things after an unexpected transformation to vampirism, were able to find faith and fellowship as the sun was coming up aside from that one Bible-thumper who was obvious a hypocrite trying to bury herself in the sand to save her own life rather than accept her fate and offer up some sort of true piety. The Midnight Club has the surviving members of the Club all join in as Ilonka adds a footnote to her own story, each member putting something there to create a shared story rather than an individual one.
It’s not a bad moment, but it didn’t hit me as hard as the closing minutes of Midnight Mass or, for that matter, any of Flanagan’s other Netflix mini-series.
And again, it wasn’t that The Midnight Club was bad. It just wasn’t what I wanted it to be, so I didn’t really look forward to when I hit it in the rotation every week. For The Midnight Club, let’s say 8 out of 10 jump scare jokes.
But hey, now there’s a show or two in the rotation that I can look forward to every week, starting with my favorite ongoing superhero series, namely Doom Patrol.
Yeah, this is definitely my bag.