Jay Ryan will follow Jeremy Ray Taylor as Ben Hanscom in coming 2019 IT: CHAPTER 2.
He will joins Jessica Chastain as Beverly, James McAvoy as Bill and Bill Hader as Richie.
Bill Skarsgard willreturn as Pennywise.
James Ransone and Andy Bean have also recently joined the cast.
“I felt more comfortable playing other people than being myself, when I was a kid. And then, the tables turned. Through my performances, I’ve become more comfortable with who I am, and then I just bring more of myself into the people that I play. ”
Born in Auckland-New Zealand, Jay made the move across to Australia at the age of 19 to take on the role of Jack Scully in Network Ten’s long running series, “Neighbours” and as Seaman Billy ‘Spider’ Webb in the Nine Network’s “Sea Patrol”.
He has also appeared in “Young Hercules”, “Xena: Warrior Princess” with Lucy Lawless, “Superfire”, “Being Eve”, “Interrogation”, “The Tribe”, “You Wish” and the award winning series “Offspring”.
Jay finished starring in the critically acclaimed New Zealand series “Go Girls,” and appeared in US series “Terra Nova”, executive produced by Steven Spielberg.
He stars alongside Kristin Kreuk from “Smallville” in the CW series, “Beauty and the Beast”.
On the big screen Jay has been seen in Belinda Chayko’s “Lou” with British legend John Hurt and the AFTRS feature “The Rookie”. He has also appeared in the short films “Bleeders”, “Mockingbird” and “Franswa Sharl” directed by Hannah Hilliard. Franswa Sharl was awarded the Crystal Bear for Best Short Film at the Berlin International Film Festival, the IF Media Award for Most Popular Film at the Flickerfest International Short Film Festival and Best Australian Short Film at the Melbourne International Film Festival.
Jay has appeared in numerous theatre productions including an international tour with “Monty Pythons” John Cleese in “Seven Ways To Skin an Ocelot”.
He also starred in “The Packer”, a one man show at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival that went on to tour New Zealand, Australia and Los Angeles. “The Packer” was nominated for Best International Contribution to Los Angeles Theatre at the 2011 Hollywood Fringe Festival.
In 2012 Jay began working with Academy Award winning director Jane Campion on the BBC mini-series “Top Of The Lake” and was awarded “Best Actor” in New Zealand’s ‘Best On The Box’ awards.
After two season of the acclaimed Canadian series Mary Kills People from Entertainment One and Cameron Pictures, audience is waiting to see him as lead character Sgt Sean Collins, in the new six-part event drama airing late this year on Foxtel Au.
About IT: CHAPTER 2, it will bow on Sept. 6, 2019, with production expected to start this summer.
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It’s a weird episode, The Angel of San Bernardino. Unusual..
Not many “facts” happen but all moments are linked by a common thread.
Characters too, all of them are linked by a common thread, whilst living different situations.
It starts as a moment of research then, throughout it, each of them comes across a discovery, a new awareness to deal with.
Conflict, more than research, is what everyone lives. Conflict with external reality but also with each one’s inner self, the most intimate part of oneself, the one that many times we would like to be silent.
Human or supernatural they are engaged in the search for what they believe is lacking in making their existence complete and, ignoring Lucifer for a moment – or maybe not, then we’ll see – nobody gets what they thought they wanted, that everyone is struggling in an inadequacy that leads them to ask disturbing questions, opening new and different scenarios to experience.
Dan makes us smile when he ends up a memorable fool just because he tries to let go, to live the moment, to stop hesitating with Charlotte, though it is not him to behave this way just to please a woman!
Charlotte then, cannot decide what version of herself she wants to be, the old one or a new, undoubtely conditioned by Lucifer and Amenadiel’s revelations. It’s a torment to get to understand that everything we live changes us forever and we cannot repudiate what we used to be, just to learn to live with it.
Amenadiel has to deal with his anxieties for what he believes are his father’s expectations, maybe he starts wondering what he wants to be, what he wants to do to feel right with himself, getting anxious to take one or other direction whilst endlessly wondering which is the right one. He has to be himself, to be true to who he really is, to recover what he has lost, that he misses so painfully.
Maze, after the bitter disappointments suffered, after the pain of feeling so inadequate in the human dimension in which she had tried to integrate so badly, looks both blinded by desire for revenge and determined to silence emotions that made her vulnerable. Basically she is kind of back to who she used to be – who we would have expected her to be – a demon, distant and unscrupulous with no grips of weakness towards those who decided to punish. Lucifer, in this case.
Noone should be too surprised she chose Pierce as her ally in her vindictive thirst. He has been chosen just because it’s functional to her goal, even if she lets him think the opposite.
Pierce has only one purpose in mind and he thinks to be totally unbeatable in pursuing it. His determination is as strong and rooted as to make him vulnerable.
At least that’s what he thinks until expectations of Chloe, seeing him in a completely different way from who he is, make him waver.
“I could not hurt her so much,” he tells Lucifer.
The way to happiness cannot be to get what they want, what each of them thinks they need, till what they want does not fully respond to who they are.
Dan, Charlotte, Amenadiel, Maze and Pierce have to find themselves in order to move on.
It is a special touch in this episode, the fact all of them are surrounded by actors, by people who simulate roles that are not theirs, as if they were a warning to the need to be themselves if we want to find our place in the world.
And Chloe? Lucifer?
For Chloe and Lucifer everything we said about the reeling in search of what we believe we need, the need to deal with ourselves and who we are before reaching what we want, well, probably all of this is even more valid for Lucifer and Chloe than for anybody else.
Please don’t tell us Chloe’s momentum towards Pierce seems rash and reckless or that you can’t recognise Chloe in that momentum.
Because if you say so, you forget everything about Chloe and her story.
Chloe is such a good girl. She had a hard life, yet she did everything the right way.
She always does everything right.
She’s fantastic at work, commits herself to be the best mom ever for Trixie, she’s understanding and open to everyone. Everything in her life seems to come before herself, her wishes and needs.
Have you ever tried it? Have you ever felt how tiring and frustrating it is, always putting aside what you would like to be, do, say, try, because “this is not the right time” ?!
If it happened to you, even just once in your life, even only for a while, then we should not explain anything about Chloe’s state of mind, nor about the momentum that drives her to Pierce in this episode.
Does she love him?
Of course no, she does not love him. She does not even know him. She does not know anything about him actually.
She wrongly believes to love him and she holds that “love you” too late back in her throat, just because she desperately loves what Pierce represents or can represent in her life.
Pierce is there. Until the fateful moment, he does not hold back, on the contrary, he urges the intensity and consistency of their relationship. It is he who initially rushes the times, he who does not hide.
It’s a presence on Chloe’s day, and she needs a presence in her day. She’s so tired of being alone with everything that matters to her.
You can say that all of us had this feeling she loved Lucifer…
Of course she loves him and she tries to make him understand it in every possible way. Oh, she has been trying to make him understand for so long!
Every time Lucifer made her think of her being loved in return by his being wonderful with her, he then changes his behaviour and inevitably brought her back to sidereal distances by feeling loved.
The uncertainty and the inability to understand Lucifer’s behaviours hurt so silently but incessantly, now Chloe is almost convinced of her unrequited love. She comes to believe he feels simply and boastfully perhaps, gratified by his presence at her side, fulfilled by their partnership, with no involving of any demanding or lasting feelings.
She tells him in that cold room, at the station, before telling him what Marcus represents for her, she urges him to tell him why he is so disturbed by that relationship, why he hates they to be together.
Then Lucifer just replies Pierce is Cain …
How can you think of being loved, how can you not give up, even if the moment you are about to say to love another, he does not do anything to stop you, he does not simply say “why? I love you”
How, when he comes out with one of his metaphors you have never understood and you cannot justify anymore, because he goes too far, too distant from giving you any hope?!
Here she is, our Chloe.
Here she is in her struggle and reeling between the ideal happiness, the dream and what she has at hand.
In the end she convinces herself it can be enough, gestures and presences that, like a surrogate, seem to fill the voids she has inside, the chance to have a bit of serenity maybe disguised as another kind of happiness, not the one she dreamed of but maybe the one she can feel comfort by.
What does Lucifer do?
How can he complain now, after he had invited Pierce to stay when he wanted to leave, after he has pushed Chloe in Pierce’s arms in every way, without a fight?
Have you ever put yourself in Lucifer’s shoes?
Have you ever been the monster, the evil who fell in love with the angelic and special being which nothing and nobody would be enough for, just imagine the Devil?
We do not need to dwell on what his story and his feelings towards Chloe have been in these 3 seasons, we have everything in mind as we did the whole ride yesterday.
The reason Lucifer does not seem to fight, the reason he gives Pierce prairies to win space in Chloe’s heart, it is something only Linda has sensed, which even Maze cannot imagine.
Lucifer loves Chloe.
He is not in love. He does not have a crush. He is not dealing with an unexpected feeling that he can not handle.
Lucifer loves Chloe.
He loves her so consciously and intensely that he loves her much more than himself.
He loves her so desperately that he cannot consider himself worthy.
He loves her so much that he goes further.
Chloe surprised him more than once showing herself to be ready to understand, accept, and start from there to love him.
He always pulled back. Their mutual love would not be enough in Lucifer’s eyes.
The terror not to make her happy, the awareness of risks due to his identity, the deep sense of inadequacy are stronger than everything else.
The status quo of their relationship was everything he felt he could give himself.
To feed his desperate heart in her closeness, without her understanding or suffering.
Chloe’s momentum towards Pierce, the illusion that she could be happy with him was enough for Lucifer to take further steps back.
Chloe’s happiness. Only that counts. He cannot make her happy. If it is to be Pierce who enlightens her look, then Pierce it must be.
Lucifer’s heart, so badly wounded in the past, will survive this wound.
This fall cannot be worse than the others.
Maybe this is different. Maybe this is already hurting too much,
then to rethink to past wrongs, to focus on resentment, to suffer old suffering seems a good way out but it isn’t. It is not enough.
Nothing can silence despair.
It is only appearance. Maze is the only one to fall for it and when even her deception is revealed, Lucifer can fully embrace sorrow, to live the risk of seeing her happy, or hurting her, to try anyway.
When you have nothing left to loose, you have nothing more to pretend because his love cannot be denied he has to do everything to protect her.
Cost can be high but he has to do it.
Lucifer comes there late.
Not even the illusion, the surrogate of that safe haven she needed too badly worked for Chloe.
Fragments of her heart lie scattered on the floor in the dim light of fire burning in fireplace.
Watching the love of his life, desolate on that sofa, shreds of Lucifer’s explode into a thousand sparks unable to restrain, to restrain pain and anger.
They did the wrong thing both, Lucifer and Chloe, even if for the right reasons.
The price to pay was very high.
Their two broken hearts.
Together they can heal, fragments of the one to be glue to those of the other.
Who knows how long it will take them to find it out, to want it to happen.
At the end of the episode however, Pierce is the to have shown the ultimate sacrifice, that change of heart that made him realise his wrong in using Chloe, his affections for her causing guilt which makes him break her heart….
And break his curse.
Edited by Lisa
Before the Season finale of Mary Kills People airs on Monday, we lingered on how Jay Ryan told his character, Ben, and his growth in season 2.
“Once Mary enters Ben’s world, it’s turned upside down again.
She has a power over him that breaks all laws and gravity. She really is more in control of the relationship this season.
This season his undercover work is more offhand and he’s playing outside the ring a little bit, he doesn’t expect to see Mary at all.”
“He’s putting the events of Season 1 past him.
Frank has told him that Mary’s trouble and he’s going to get in a lot of trouble too if he goes down that path, but he does.”
Mary and Ben are two people that like to play outside the rules.
They play outside the realm of their occupations, and live on the line a little bit. Ben’s a lonely guy, he’s got his tail between his legs a little bit. I guess Mary is dangerous and he likes that about her, and it makes him feel more alive.”
Being undercover, you engulf yourself in the world of the person you’re trying to take down.
You’re both human, so emotionally you get attached, but at the end of the day you have to arrest them–but that doesn’t stop those feelings. I think he’s a little confused if his feelings for Mary are real, or if they’re just a placebo effect of him doing his job.”
from The TV Junkies – Mary Kills People Actors on Ben and Mary Relationship and the Season 2 Power Struggle – Kelly Townsend – January 16, 2018
Ben – is a man of many masks. He likes to hide behind roles, and that makes him feel safe and secure – but as he delved into Mary’s world a bit more, those masks slipped away.
Talking about Mary Kills People Greg Bryk brilliantly said: “This show is special. Heart so naked. We are all alone, together “.
We have already said it and today, after the tenth episode, the fourth of this wonderful second season, we feel like saying it again. Greg could not have chosen better words to define this show capable of telling feelings, emotions and conflicts so deep and intense. So true.
They are all alone, exposed and wounded, in this Ride or Die.
Des has to deal with the awareness of having made dirty, without remedy, something that he considered pure and ennobling.
The hand that destroys the line of good and evil perfectly knows all that has broken cannot be repaired neither on the table, nor in life.
Moral integrity was swept away in one stroke, like sugar.
You cannot free yourself of your actions by stripping as you do with clothes, nor by destroying the poison after the bad use has been made of it.
There seems to be no consolation to Des’ sorrow.
Ben is tender in his need to know that Mary is not as bad as he tells her, that she is not lost forever. He is too upright, too pure even to think of being in love with a person who is perverse and immoral. He struggles from within to slam the door to Mary, even if you see in his eyes he believes her when she claims not to have killed Travis. However, he cannot allow her to make his life murky, he moves in the right and the line Des has swept away has been for too long everything he referred to, what he has devoted his life to and he does not feel ready to wipe it away without a reason.
Always moving in a world filled by pretence and lies, the certainty of what was right was his compass which allowed him not to feel perverse in turn to deceive so openly to others.
Mary’s vulnerability touches the deepest chords of his being and he must be force himself, telling her “Go”, driven by the need not to know himself lost in turn.
Mary’s compass has never been the law, what is written on paper. Yet what she has done has always been motivated by a deep-rooted sense of right.
“We did what we had to do” are her favorite words, as Des tells her, because what they have done to patients has always been, without a shadow of a doubt, for the good of the patients themselves.
With Travis’ death Mary’s certainties crumble like the glass of pentobarbital on Des’ chopping board, shattered by the awareness of not having acted for the good.
It is obvious that she always thought she acted for the best but not even the need to protect her daughters is to mitigate the guilt of having made a mistake.
Even just not to trust, maybe, because the alternative offered by Ben could be valid.
Mary acted following her only known rule, never trusting and the price to pay was very high this time.
Coping with the immorality of the accomplished gesture is not enough.
Losing Ben without appeal, renouncing the only, maybe selfish, source of happiness, the only breach open in years of solitude, is perhaps the worst joke.
She, who had always felt for the others a bit like Germaine’s giraffe, capable of “achieve things out of reach”, now does not recognize herself, she does not know if the game was worth it.
They are all broken, our protagonists, victims of the acts that they were forced to perform.
The turbulence experienced by Jess and Naomi, the difficulty of obtaining from the reciprocal relationship what they seek to make, it creates a picture of greater despair and distrust.
Then comes Joshua.
“Joshua Yang, 21, dying of bowel cancer” is all he has to say about himself.
Des even accuses him of not being up to the other “patients” met so far:
“No, no, no, no, no. You know what, Josh? .I’ve met a lot of people in my time, and they’re largely inspirational and spiritual. They face the end with fortitude. They cherish the time that remains.”
Yet it is Joshua, for whom despair had made him not able to fight for what it is worth, the one who seems cannot suck the little bit of marrow left to live.
Joshua dies and with his death saves everyone.
Mary and Des come back to deal with the raw awareness that saving others is concrete in loving them. In making the gestures needed to give meaning and dignity to other’s life, and death.
At the bedside of Joshua, where on one side parents rips our hearts, especially this mother with that painful image of a modern “Pietà”, gives account and honors the pain of the loss of those we love, Mary and Des find themselves back, returning to be true to themselves – Thank You Brendan .
They find the main way back, maybe not always straight, maybe will not cross only legality territories but it is certainly the right path, the only one worth travelling.
“He is why we do this“
They are not alone, this time.
Courage, determination and the pain of Joshua don’t save only Mary and Des. In the most unexpected moment and way, they save Ben’s life and feelings, giving him all the answers he had not been able to find by himself.
Instinct pushed him to Mary, ethics to pursue her and Joshua’s death silences any doubt, frees him from any hesitation.
It is not only Joshua’s pain and despair that heals our character’s wounds. These are the gestures with which Joshua, before dying, gives meaning to his short life, makes it complete and happy, making it impossible for Mary, Des and Ben to ignore the boy’s legacy.
With no more discouragement, the meeting with Kaley gives Joshua the strength to say goodbye aware he had not lived in vain. What a great, noble, generous service Des makes him, as providentially Cupid, despite the grip of pain around his own heart.
Joshua opening his heart to Kaley, being true to his feelings no matter what because, as Racine wrote honoring tragedies’protagonists “Qui n’a plus qu’un moment à vivre, n’a plus rien à dissimuler,” he rekindles in Mary and Des the awareness of the solemnity of their task. No matter that their commitment is renewed on the ground, in a bathroom, rather.
For Ben, now that he has truly understood, now that he has made a choice he cannot ignore, all that remains is to give value to this choice, honoring Joshua’s message of hope.
The words Mary and Ben exchange sitting on the steps in Mary’s backyard, are the most passionate declaration of love which we have been allowed to be witnesses to in a really long time.
“I just watched you kill someone”
“I’m never gonna stop”
To say it with the words of another postcard quote: Love is Not “If” or “Because”. Love is “Anyway” and “Even Though” and “In Spite of”
Priceless the whole moment is sweetly commented by the wonderful You by Kyson:
No man’s an island when he’s had this conversation
No man’s in forest even if he tried to be one
I’ve seen your insights, it’s colorful
But you’re not an island if you try to be one with me
Edited by Lisa
“So you’re just gonna swoop in and save me?”
“I guess so.”
“Des, no one can save her from herself but from you.”
This episode of Mary Kills People essentially revolves around Mary’s need to be saved or, at least, around those who love her more and their wish of saving her.
Ben, to be honest, has already saved her. We have already written it and are redrafting the concept.
He has never saved her because Mary’s life is in danger as the risk, for Mary, was always calculated.
Whenever Ben’s path crosses Mary’s, one chance opens up to have a way out of the spiral of ambiguity and danger from which she seems instead. Inevitably she is drawn and sucked.
“You do not have to do it anymore, case is closed.”
This he told her on the beach in the finale of the first season when, showing her the damaging picture he did not attach to the proof, as much he hadn’t attached all their conversations, he proved to have perfectly understood the truth about the nature of her activities and the connections between Mary, Des, Grady and the terminally ill.
He made a choice.
Something in Mary struck him so much that he chose to believe there were something good and right in what she was doing, so much that it worth it protecting her. Saving her from Grady, from an indictment, no matter what.
Mary deserved to be saved.
Eight months have passed and Ben has not changed one iota.
He finds her out on the subject as he investigates a house, seeing her stealthily sneaking a very suspicious bottle of rum in her house. She asks him to throw the man out which he obeys not battering an eyelid.
When the reason for everything is unveiled, his reaction is one of those that makes his armour shine, the Knight that he is.
“I will deal with Olivia…It’s what I do… Go home. Live your life”
Had the mould to have a person like Ben been broken and if he was not so hooked by Mary, there would be a line out of that camper. Granted.
Because Ben does not reproach, he does not criticize, he does not judge. Her goals understood or not, he simply accepts Mary and is aware, perhaps more than her, of how the situation is really messed up and dangerous. He has the means of saving her, pull her out of the mess she has slipped into.
By asking her to follow him to the station, once again he gives more profound facets than the obvious ones to the meaning of rescue her.
Not only trying to protect her from Olivia but the chance of taking another path, doing the right thing, crossing that line back.
How strong is Mary’s temptation to surrender to the way offered by Ben? How intense is the desire to trust him?
“Maybe I ran into him for an option”
She tells Des with the need to be true deep in her voice.
The story, for now, takes another turn when the episode ends with Travis dead in the back seat of Mary’s car.
Travis died because Des poisoned him.
Des, who Annie catches dashing off. Des, who with his strong ethics, has never had a doubt or a perplexity about what is moral and what is not, about when to break the law is not to do something wrong and what limit instead does not go wrong … He poisons Travis so that Mary can’t kill him by herself..
Another rescue, certainly different in the dynamics, but totally identical in the ultimate goal to save Mary, Not only from an imminent danger, but more and more from the impossibility of being saved.
There is a common urgency in Ben and Des’ attitude towards Mary. The will to protect her from the thought of being alone to face what she has to face.
Two really different personalities, two forms of love that are not really comparable, yet, at the showdown, both do not hesitate to question their beliefs, to expose themselves, to keep her safe from that feeling of never recovering, with which she seems to inevitably dance like someone, fascinated by the flames. She stops, instead, in place of fleeing.
Mary is safe. For now.
Ben has to deal with the ruinous course of his investigation.
Des has to face demons that his conscience won’t allow him to hide from himself.
But Mary is safe.
Thanks to Des and Ben she returns home and hugs Jess because nothing is worthier than family in her heart.
We don’t know for certain if Mary is or not aware of the value of her friends actions, of why they put so much at risk.
We do not know how much she realizes that all the care and the courage and determination, have been for her.
Simply because in their eyes she deserves it. In their thoughts she has a right to her chance of happiness.
There is such a tenderness and a vulnerability in Ben and Des, when Mary is involved, which, while in the story it amplifies her own vulnerability, in our eyes it gives credit to Jay Ryan and Richard Short of an intensity a depth and a balance of interpretation that only the ones most capable of empathy can find within themselves.
As for Mary … Mary has never been saved before. From noone. Ever.
She had to help her mother to commit suicide to stop her suffering.
She had to raise her sister because without a father and with that mother, who else could’ve taught Nicole to live?!
She was so motherly with Kevin who maybe filled her dinner table, but certainly did not clear her mind of worries.
She is so used to not letting go, not counting on anyone, only trusting her strength and options. She does not even know how to handle either Des’ generosity or Ben’s momentum.
She has always been alone. To think she has to get by herself has always been natural to her.
Loneliness has been her strength.
Words are not enough here to tell how Caroline Dhavernas is masterful in making this woman alive and true from within, so incredibly concealed but multifaceted.
Everything about her palpitates Mary’s pulse and there will be no recognition for which she will not be proudly deserved for one of the most beautiful tv characters we’ve seen in a while..
Mary is alone which she thinks is the only way to go.
This is why Brendan and Germaine upset her so much by undermining her certainties.
“We were each other’s twin flame.”
It does not matter that they are no longer together in a romantic sense. It does not matter that they were not perfect for each other. There are neither perfect people nor perfect relationships.
What exists, in this season even more than in the previous all the characters seem to whisper it insistently to Mary, what exists is the consoling force that comes from bonds, the cathartic power that comes from not feeling alone.
One of those quotes printed on posters and postcards which says that
‘You Cannot Save People. You Can Only Love Them.’
It’s all in Ben and Des’ choices. In Brendan and Germaine’s, all in loving without guarantees but still loving, the message of salvation that everybody wishes Mary to get and to treasure, to give meaning to the pain around her which sometimes seems too much for her too.
Pain, like mess, cannot be avoided.
However it can be shared because you are not alone.
“There are certain people that just keep coming back into your life no matter what happens.”
We must be good at choosing when to give them a chance to stay.
Edited by Lisa
It is a weird thing, trust, a delicate feeling. Whether you give or receive, you have to handle it with care because it takes very little to damage it and only a little more to break it.
When that happens, when you stay there, knowing that something that could have been will never be, fragments strike you like the reflections of sun on the water caressed by wind.
It is such a precarious feeling and it is said to be easier to love than to trust and to have someones confidence is an honor more precious than being loved.
Raised with Wolves’ absolute protagonist is trust.
Trust that you would give but too much pain keeps you from daring.
Trust that your logic would never give but the heart has already granted, no matter what.
Trust that has always been there, you’ve just never thought to call into question and that, however, is likely to crumble apart, crumbling even you.
I don’t want to sound corny though, watching Mary Kills People one episode after another, I am invariably struck by how much and how well everything contributes to a riveting, engaging narrative.
Examples are in every scene, proving mastery and dedication of all the professionals who contribute to wrap such a beautiful product.
Grady waiting for Mary framed by water transparency or Ben talking on his cell with the picturesque lake on his back, are just two examples of the will to engage the viewer in sharing not only a tale but the emotional warmth of the scene.
You can breathe harmony and mutual understanding behind the narrative, even in conflicts.
The continuity of direction by Holly Dale, undoubtedly ensures consistency to the canvas, from background to single details. Characters, scenery, lines, lights and sounds, everything spreads real emotion, rough, conflicting and uncertain, just like those in real life.
The most intense tones are those generated by conflicts and hardest conflicts are those within each character.
Trusting another person means giving that person the power to break your heart and hoping they won’t.
This hope is so fragile in Des… He is determined to avoid Mary, to give her the chance to break his heart.
Fear of betrayal, by the only person who counts on him, is so big that he prefers to play himself in the role of the villain, compromising its principles and let it all go to hell, not to have to test his friend loyalty.
Ben, on the contrary, wants to conquer Mary’s trust, intimately gratified by her cry for help.
Deserving, perhaps, even more than conquering, aware that he had tried to betray her confidence before earning it.
Then he says what he shouldn’t say, does what he shouldn’t do, goes where he shouldn’t go, as he didn’t know whether it is strongest the desire that Mary trusts him, or the confirmation that he can trust her.
His feelings for Mary, the irrational instinct to protect her from her own vulnerabilities, are so strong and pressing that, for Mary, he is willing to go to the limit of what his ethics allows. Maybe he would be ready to cross some limit too because of Mary. After all, Ben is aware he has got her and understands her reasons. However, knowing what Mary is doing, he disapproves, though, as only one who loves can do, he is ready to accept it…Indeed, he has already done so, almost earlier than Nicole (Hats off to Charlotte Sullivan’s extraordinary skill, delivering a character so complete and complex, with just a few brushes as an expert painter).
Ben accepted Mary without wonder and shyness, he doesn’t let what Mary does to be a reason to hold back his desire to be there for her.
He doesn’t allow Mary to be defined by her mistakes…
Ben’s ability to see the good in Mary is amazing in spite of the truth of what she does, which is, for him, burning, crystal and inescapable.
Ben seems ready to do anything for Mary. He admits with candor to Frank at the district.
For some reason she chose him. Him, the son of a happy couple who share a serene retirement in Florida. He, who was brought up on good and right, cannot hold back.
He cannot remain emotionless to what he saw in Mary, when, alone and desperate, she came knocking on his door.
That evening, two solitary beings took refuge in one another.
He is so sure of the vulnerability he saw behind her strength. A strength that only fear and pain feed.
He is so sure as to follow his instinct leading him to her side. He moves us most with the sincerity and tenderness with which he proposes the trip to Florida with Mary or with looks and the sweetness he reserves for her,later, at every Nicole sympathetic allusion.
This is why the disappointment of then, it hurts so much ….
That’s why Ben does not have the clarity of mind nor the calm to understand that Mary is going to tell him exactly what he has just found out.
Mary’s “I want to be honest with you” has a tremendous, unappreciated value.
Mary confirms his instinct, Mary trusts him.
But in Ben’s ear, on the pontoon, there is only the cry of pain of his broken heart and Mary’s sincerity, the reciprocated trust, is lost in that echo of pain.
Ben was freaked out by Mary’s vulnerability and fell in love.
Jumping to conclusions during the phone call, believing everything he had imagined about her suddenly wrong, miserably shatters the confidence he felt, the trust he thought she deserved.
Even before being betrayed by Mary, Ben is betrayed by the collapse of his expectations. Doesn’t wait, doesn’t listen, he overreacts.
It’s too painful to think that Mary is not as fragile as she looked in his arms.
In front of her, he was incredibly himself.
Too much pain to think that she has not reciprocated.
It is not the thought of a Mary “worse” than he thought to crush Ben’s heart and logic,
it is the horror at the thought of exposing himself, to have been true in front of someone capable instead of pretending emotions, fragility and involvement.
Once undermined the trust in Mary’s emotional honesty, there is no room for his feelings.
Ben goes away, leaving Mary torn and lonely.
That’s how Mary has always seen herself. How she always felt.
The immensity of pain inside her to suggest that such an immense sorrow could not be shared, could not be understood and loneliness was the remedy to survive.
Keeping all this pain inside, though, because your sister does not deserve it, your husband would not understand (and that’s how he became an ex) and taking this almost clinical detachment from any emotional involvement, makes you tougher, preventing you from trust issues, pushing people away, even daughters.
The fear of allowing the ones she loves to come too close to her runs deep and corrodes her soul like a burning fire.
Mary can only rely on herself.
An indelible pain which will never die, as she says, has been caused by those who loved her most.
She is no longer used, not capable and too afraid to trust. She would not trust Ben and she is committed to strenuously keep him away since the beginning, at her wake up in the motel.
She slams in his face that he cannot be trusted because he is the one always working, the one pretending.
She shows coldness, distance. She knows how much any weakness could cost.
And trust would be for her an unforgivable weakness.
The temptation to break her haven of loneliness’ barriers is great, the price is likely to be very high.
Mary would like to give up, oh how she would.
Close her eyes, shoulders enclosed by his arms as when he taught her to aim, protected.
“To properly aim you have to control subconscious”, he said.
Surrounded by him, her inner demons silent at last, she felt herself, without fear and the shot was direct and precise.
I wonder what she thought.
Taking a deep breath, the warmth of Ben on arms and back, she must have thought how everything would have been easier, in that warmth, finally protected.
However Mary seems to resist there and later, during the walk.
Yet, Ben’s protective desire to crumble Mary’s solitude broke through, the sincerity of his feelings not unheard.
She needs just a little encouragement by Nicole as she had already settled inside her that Ben and what he means, is worth the risk.
Sadly just to hear his voice in delivering her real name, it’s enough to know her choice was late.
Nothing ever easy for Mary.
The resolution to confide, to share everything with Ben, not just the loneliness, is a difficult and important step, so bitterly reviled by the simple lack of timing.
Not enough strength to grab Ben, to stop him, yelling at him that what he found out was exactly what she went to tell him. That it’s what she meant her “to be honest”.
He should just listen to her.
She is so resigned to being disappointed by those who love her that she doesn’t even try, does not believe it.
It is easier to keep protecting herself, to see in Ben’s reaction a cold pro calculation rather than his disappointed irrational bitterness.
Easier to whisper to herself “I told you so,” and letting him leave, rather than risk of not being trusted once she explained.
Rejecting because of the dread of not being accepted.
Expectations play a role in the episode secondary to that played by the trust.
Ben and Mary, they wound each other because of the fear of being hurt, because of hesitation in believing, afraid that trusting each other will mean to concede too much into their vulnerability.
To protect themselves, expose both of them to a bigger pain.
To trust means exposure to risk of suffering, of course.
Those we love can hurt us more than anyone else, even not on purpose.
What Ben and Mary must both ask themselves, from the depth of their solitude, is whether the warmth of the presence of each other in the other’s life is worth the risk of getting burned.
Edited by Lisa