The Leftovers Season 1 Review “Cairo”

The Leftovers Episode 107

The Leftovers has continued to hold steady in quality, with “Cairo” offering an even stronger narrative through line than last week. Oh, make no mistake, the show is still painfully obtuse at times, to the point that whole scenes go by where I still have little idea what is actually being said. Still, I’m more enraptured in what’s going on than ever before, and that’s definitely a good thing.

The main thrust of this week’s episode was the conflict between Kevin and Patti finally reaching a turning point. In another of his blackouts, Kevin lost it and kidnapped Patti, dragging her out to a secluded cabin to end her once and for all. Of course, he regained consciousness before anything too drastic happened, leading to several tense scenes of Kevin trying to figure out what to do.

This was easily the strongest part of the episode, as Kevin finally had to face the creeping insanity that has plagued him all season. I’ll admit that I’ve found it hard to sympathize with Kevin this season, but I was fully on his side here as he tried to make sense of what had happened while he was out. He’s still not that likable, but it’s hard not to sympathize with the guy as he finds his shirts pinned to trees and the remnants of a campfire, all things we’ve seen in “dreams” throughout the season.

The inclusion of Dean helped keep these scenes lively and full of conflict. Though there’s still much to learn about the guy, his final lines seemed to suggest he hears the same voices as Kevin’s father. Both he and Patti seemed desperate to get Kevin to accept some greater calling or purpose without outright telling him what it is, very much like his dad.

This does get to a continuing problem of the show, which is that it doesn’t ever feel like it’s giving us any answers, even when it sounds like it’s trying to give answers. Patti’s description of why the Guilty Remnant exist didn’t really say anything new; they want to make sure people don’t forget, and that mission gives people purpose and the chance, like Gladys, to be remembered forever. There’s still no indication as to why the Sudden Departure happened, or why they feel it deserves such reverence.

The other arcs this week were less involved, but there were still strong moments. Any Nora scenes are good Nora scenes, and she was as likable as ever here. Whether she was offering up her purse to Jill or giving unwanted parenting advice to Laurie, she has a way of cutting through the BS every other character on the show deals in. Megan’s backslide into talking and emotion, meanwhile, felt a bit random, and seems like a story that woud’ve been more interesting while she was still in-training and not a full member of the GR.

What did you think of this week’s episode? Let me know in the comments!