Critical Condition: The Leftovers

The Leftovers (SoHo, 8.30 Monday)

“The end of the world is nigh. At least that’s what people are saying — or hoping — in the final season of HBO’s The LeftoversThe Leftovers is a story about an ambiguous apocalypse. One Oct. 14, 2 percent of Earth’s population randomly vanishes in what is later dubbed the ‘Sudden Departure.’ No one knows why, no one knows where. For everyone else, life simply goes on, same as before, but with less physical and metaphysical certainty. The final season sets up the series’s endgame, and possibly humanity’s — not as a horror-story disaster but as a melancholy, beautiful and mordant cosmic joke.” — New York Times.

“Some of what’s safe to reveal has already been teased in trailers—a shift in location to Australia for some of the characters, a wide expectation that the seventh anniversary of the Final Departure will bring some kind of cataclysmic global event, the possibility that Kevin (Justin Theroux) might be mankind’s saviour. All of which presents fodder for a lip-smackingly satisfying conclusion, and a wealth of Kevin puns (Knocking on Kevin’s Door, Show Me Kevin, Stairway to Kevin). But the show, as ever, has tricks up its sleeve.” — The Atlantic.

“Season 3 is no less than a coup, wrapping up a wild narrative with ambitious new threads and honing in on each character’s fundamental spiritual and psychological beliefs. This final round with the Garvey family is designed to evoke powerful emotional reactions; you’re as likely to startle your dog from cathartic laughter as you are from open sobbing, all within the course of an hour.” — IndieWire.

“To spend five or six consecutive hours watching HBO’s The Leftovers, as I did ahead of the start of the show’s third season, is to find most other shows on TV looking small by comparison. The Leftovers, which made a quantum qualitative leap from its first to second season and maintains that quality level through the first six of eight final season episodes, is a tremendous iceberg of a show on which one could write endlessly about just one or two calving chunks of interest and come nowhere near delving into even a small portion of what lurks underneath.” — The Hollywood Reporter.

“The new season of The Leftovers is spectacular, in every sense of that word. In upcoming weekly recaps, my Variety colleagues and I will attempt to delve into all the ways in which this deeply conventional show throws convention out the window, sets it on fire, rebuilds it and then throws a dance party next it, in ways that make the viewer cry and gape and glory in being alive. An excerpt from the notes I took while watching seven of the third and final season’s eight episodes: ‘I don’t understand anything, and it’s awesome.'” — Variety.

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