April 23, 2024

Gabbing Geek

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Hunters “The Home”

Season Two, Episode Seven.

I was wondering how Hunters would fill in its last two episodes, and this one here, one that doesn’t even feature most of the main cast, well…yeah, this is just about what I really grew to enjoy about this particular show.

If I had been wondering if Hunters had lost its mojo, that surreal sense of pulpy something that didn’t take itself quite as seriously as it could have.  Season two was a much more serious show in many ways save the occasional bit like how guns don’t need to be reloaded in an intense enough firefight.  But then there’s this episode with an whole aesthetic that looks like something out of a cartoon with some truly creative camera angles, a game of Mousetrap that always seemed to be set at just the right place, a good fake-out or two, and a house that looks like it was rigged by any of the Home Alone kids but all the boobie traps were lethal.

Told in the form of a flashback story Jonah claims he heard as he escorts Hitler to see, well, Chava’s former lover who showed up in a boat just to take Hitler into custody, this is the story of an elderly couple who had no children and appear at first glance to be talking directly to the audience at home and are maybe not quite right in the head.  The old man was once a leading architect for the Third Reich, and the old woman seems as daffy as her husband.  Then one day three SS officers show up.  One of them seems like he might be nice, but the thing is, the old couple are suspected of harboring Jews.

Turns out they are.  The two crueler officers are taken out by some lethal boobie traps when they find hidden spaces in the basement and attic, and the nice one turns out to be not so nice, so the old lady buries a meat cleaver into his head.  They toss the bodies into a nearby marsh and that’s that.  Then the episode replays the earlier scenes with some contest.  The old couple weren’t breaking the fourth wall.  Even when the old man directly referenced the fourth wall while building a model house.  No, they were talking to the dozen or so people hiding in their house.

This is really the kind of episode that made me want to watch this show.  Why did it take so long to do another in a much more dour second and final season?

Regardless, taking out three SS officers just means three more come by looking for the ones that disappeared.  And one of them does murder the old couple.  Not because they were hiding Jews.  That guy just really wanted to live in their house.  So, he and his wife and young son move in.

No, the people hiding in the house didn’t leave.  There’s an SS base nearby and they had nowhere to go.

Yes, they tried to swipe some food while the Nazi family was sleeping.  The kid catches them.  One of the Jewish boys thinks it would be wrong to murder a child, but they do use him as bait to take out his parents and try to take over the house themselves.  All they have to do is fool the SS that will inevitably come looking for the missing officer.  They even have a plan for that by having two of the Jews pose as the wife and son and claim the father ran off on the family.  And they would have gotten away with it if the Nazi boy didn’t get loose and blow the Jews’ cover, leading to one of my favorite moments in the entire series as a seemingly endless stream of SS officers run into the house only to be cut down by guns, blades, and blunt objects scattered throughout the house just for the purposes of taking down Nazis.

Really, it’s a lethal Home Alone.

As it is, only a couple of the Jewish kids survive the assault and destruction of the house, and the boy who led the other kids to safety, the same boy who suggested not killing the Nazi boy and posed as him, a crafty kid who heard many times the old couple refer to the house as full of “ghosts” to try to fool various visiting Nazis with varying levels of success…he’s Zev, Chava’s ex-lover.

As I see it, introducing a new character this late in a series is a bit of a challenge, but if you’re gonna do it, do this way.  Zev may not be that important for the final episode, but dang if his origin story didn’t fit this show just right.