Hold on, did I say I didn’t get why anyone would say they’d rather have just the teen story and not the adult one? I totally get that now.
See, I think it’s easy to see why I would have initially preferred the adult story and not the teen story, even if it wasn’t by much. The adults are played by established, recognizable actors, many of whom are bringing their A-game to the material. The teens actors are fine too (even though most of them are probably over twenty), but it’s almost like a different show. I would have only given the adult storyline a small advantage because of whatever it is Misty and Shauna are doing in the present. Then there’s this episode where the adults all basically confess what they’ve been doing since it looks like wherever the women hid that guy’s body has been discovered by the cops, and while it isn’t necessarily bad on some levels–Misty’s basically unrepentant for anything she’s done even as the others point out she murdered someone–there’s also this whole “Why are they listening to anything Lottie says?” idea running through my head. When they were stuck in the woods as hungry, terrified teenagers it made sense. In the present, they’re adults with cars and such. It’s not like Lottie has a gun on anybody.
It all just feels slight and silly. There’s one good scene set in the present, and it’s about Jeff and Callie as Callie is finally told just how much loss and trauma Shauna went through when she was lost in the wilderness. Even if what Shauna and the others are up to feels ridiculous, all the stuff in the present showing Shauna’s family drama has generally been to my approval.
But then there’s the flashback stuff where, to save Lottie, the others decide to essentially draw straws, or playing cards to be precise, to pick someone to die and be scarified to the others. Yes, it could very easily be one of the girls who hasn’t been seen as an adult in the present, like the girl cuddling what she thought was a live mouse until Tai pointed out it was a desiccated corpse, but instead, Nat draws the unlucky card. It’s genuinely tense despite the fact I know for a fact Nat is going to survive this encounter. Indeed she does, but mostly because Javi dies accidentally trying to guide her to a safe place after Travis gave her time to make a run for it.
The other girls in that scene have gone full-on Lord of the Flies, even howling like wolves as they try to chase Nat and Javi down across a frozen lake.
There’s some sort of appropriateness that it would be Nat too. Nat did partake in the initial cannibal feast, but she’s also been the most likely to continue hunting for game to feed the others, the one who seems to have her head mostly screwed on right, and the one who’s been most resistant to the made-up cult stuff that Lottie was pushing before Shauna beat her to a bloody pulp. Nat looks like the mentally strongest member of the group right now where even Coach Ben is mostly hallucinating about the boyfriend he left behind.
Which makes it all the more ironic that Nat in the present is the one who fell the hardest for Lottie’s wilderness nonsense. I get that Nat had drug issues and has bounced in and out of rehab, and quite frankly, it’s amazing more of these women aren’t doing that sort of thing, but it’s a really big contrast between Past Nat and Present Nat.
I think I like Past Nat better.