Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Tales from the Darkside: Florence Bravo

Hey, it's Lori Cardille from Day of the Dead! It's nice seeing her.

"Florence Bravo" isn't too shabby of an episode. It feels less like a horror show and more like a soap opera that happens to have a ghost. Cardille plays Emily, who moves into a new house with her husband David (David Hayward) and becomes convinced by the eponymous ghost that David is again cheating on her.

No real surprises here, but the performances carry the day. Cardille is sympathetic as the woman who slowly grows more paranoid while Hayward gives more complexity than usual to this role. David is not a one-dimensional jerk. Even though we find out he committed adultery before, he seems to genuinely want to atone for it and be a good husband, and the episode wisely shows how his words and actions could be interpreted as innocent or nefarious.

The ghost, aka Florence Bravo, is a bit of a letdown. Apparently, she really existed. At 26, the Victorian heiress became a widow when her husband was fatally poisoned. He was apparently very controlling and a bully. She was much wealthier than him, but he took over her finances when they married. No one was ever ever arrested or charged in his death, but Florence was a suspect and the case became quite a scandal at the time.

As a ghost, Florence speaks with a disembodied voice that could have been creepier. Occasionally, she's represented as a chair rocking by itself, but she eventually turns up in the form of an older woman. I would have liked it more if director John Lewis and writer Edithe Swensen (who wrote more episodes than I realized) had made her more ghoulish and macabre. It feels like a missed opportunity to push "Florence Bravo" over the edge.

No comments:

Post a Comment