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Mary Kills People – Raised by Wolves

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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.

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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.

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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).

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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.

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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.

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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.

Lonely.

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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.

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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.

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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”.

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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.

Federica

Edited by Lisa

Mary Kills People – Wave the White Flag

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“There is beauty in the Inevitable”

It’s impressive that each episode of Mary Kills People takes the audience to a gradually deeper level of knowledge of the events and characters.
It is as if they had shown us a large canvas from the beginnning, already complete, which the evolution of the story makes us focus right down to details.
We could easily define this third episode as the best seen so far, except that, as said, it helps to create a bigger picture, every detail to enrich the overall vision so, at the end of the six, each one will be quite an important chapter of the wonderful story.

In “Wave the white flag” reactions to events are like layers of an onion on character’s skin, fallen away, one after the other, exposing all the emotions, the truth, the reasons which move each one of the protagonists in this choral tale.
Meeting Irene and Declan in the opening moment, Mary and Des are enchanted by peacefulness and love they perceive as an aura around the tight-knit couple. The shared happiness they exhibit in spite of everything has a special value for Mary who’s maybe feeling the vibes of an old nostalgia for never having experienced something even close to that emotion, softened by the knowledge, mixed with hope, that maybe sometimes, somewhere, it truly exists.

The overture sequence Lime and Coconut alone brings about praise and plaudits to the wonderful Holly Dale for the skill with which she introduces lights and contrast, peacefulness and chaos and anticipates much of the episode’s tone, ‘tuning’ viewers as to what is about to happen.

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It is a narrative choice which is really very effective to put so much sunshine and serenity – the fantastic music score helps a lot – at the beginning of a story that is rather turbulent and confused as though the grey of the sky rocked by the wind before a storm.
The cinematography also admirably tells of this conflict, from the exuberance of Irene and Declan’s garden, to the coldness of the beach where Mary meets Ben for the first of three contacts, each one more illuminating than the others.

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Characters are stretched like violin strings, moment by moment, raw nerves at every clash they share.
That instinctive awareness, misty but strong, in all that is happening today will complicate tomorrow life.
They each do their best to keep the helm and not get carried away by the storm, not always easy though.

Far from it.

It is not always even possible.

Des knows it when he sees the routine that has been scrupulously built and shared with Mary, creak under the weight of unexpected events and Mary’s dramatic reaction to them.
Bravo, from deep down, to Richard Short who introduces us, with unusual and uninhibited skill, a character multifaceted, true and credible both in sarcastic tones and in the dramatic moments, all intensely and brilliantly delivered.

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Frank knows it as much as he knows Ben and is able to read his soul sooner than the colleague reads his own feelings. His affection is so sincere that he has not the courage to intervene, but you could lose yourself in the depth and intensity of Lyriq Bent’s eyes when, at the hospital, he puts in his stare all the sincere concern, without judgments or convictions, for what Ben is living.

Jess knows it. Jess who does not see any hope for her heartfelt need of certainties.
The people she loves seem so ready to hurt her. She sees the storm everywhere around her, not only in the sky.

Even Grady knows, the merciless Grady, frenzied and moody figure created by the talented genius of Greg Bryk. Things could get messy from time to time and his coldness and maniacal ability to control each factor may not be enough.

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Mary knows of course. Oh yes, she knows …
She has already lost more than a protective layer, maybe she never had so many, feels the storm coming more intensely because she lives the storm inside, holding it within, even before impacting events that trigger it.

Mary is storm.

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Ben is the one who notices it.
Ben who fits into the story so deviously, a liar and who reveals a conflicting personality at the very least so fascinating, a moral so pure as to make him tenderly vulnerable.

Ben reads Mary.
He reads the hidden implications in the innermost defenses and he is bewitched.
He knows so little that he should not get her so well, he could not.

But Mary has exposed herself to him. She was softly herself when she saw only a chance encounter, a sudden contact, intense, though not dangerous.
In his fake, dingy apartment, Ben was someone to tell everything to without fear, knowing that he would not have time or no other to witnesses her narration.

The storm that Mary hurls at Ben is truly and deeply destabilizing. Whatever happens, it changes you forever.

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Ben makes no effort to do his job honestly. He is honest.
He is investigating Mary, does not tell fibs to himself nor justify himself to her.

Never.

He is consistent in his soul even as he is overwhelmed by the swirl of emotions that Mary arouses. No armor but certainly reminds us of a knight of yesteryear, always ready to do his duty and to protect Mary without thinking for a moment.
Although Mary is the one who errs.

Even those who make mistakes deserve protection.

Even those who are fragile make mistakes and Ben saw the fragility of Mary. He perceived, felt, touched every moment Mary was close to him.
The fragility and the conflict.
The fragility of Mary, Ben cannot resist.

The most beautiful scene of the episode, the narrative moment that changes the whole story is definitely in the hospital when Ben, anything but lost, has no hesitation in grasping the arm of Mary and writes his number to be called for anything. For anything at all. The sight of Mary shocked, yet another perception of her fragility, gives him the strength to take a step that is kind of an irrevocable choice.
Moved, touched, bewitched by this messy creature who he didn’t ask to meet but has, Ben feels he wants to be there for her.

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He decided to do so.

To reach Mary, later, at the motel is only a consequence of the steps taken in that corridor.
He does not respond with words but by kissing her when she asked why he had reached her.
With tenderness and intensity of what seems like the first kiss, which they missed in the heat of their first encounter, he tells her he is there because he cares about her, because the attraction has quickly given way to something more engaging, more intimate, deeper.
The conflict that Ben will have to live, for those steps in the hospital corridor and the sweet hugging at the motel, does not currently have any importance.
What matters right now, is that the raw, fragile Mary feels lonely.

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He wants her to know she is not alone.

And Mary?

Maybe Mary fell asleep in Ben’s arms after making love. Maybe she’d have dreamed of a lush garden and the color of the flowers, the warmth of the sun on the skin and the happiness in the heart …

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Federica

Edited by Lisa

Mary Kills People – Bloody Mary

Posted on Updated on

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When life get really messed up we get strong.

Unusual and weird are the circumstances in which we first meet Mary Harris with her simple gesture of getting rid of heels so she feels more dynamic, more comfortable, making her one of us, actually.

Mary Harris is not a criminal.

Mary Harris is not a heroine.

Mary Harris is a woman.

A twenty-first-century woman, mother, family helm in her hands; established at work, responsibilities burdening on her too often, plus a deeper dimension, more personal and thoroughly less shareable in which she needs to move following her values, her sense of ethics, her need for answers.

She reminds you of someone doesn’t she?!

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The magic touch, the sign of the uniqueness and value of this series created, written, produced and directed by women, is maybe the authenticity of Mary since the first frames and in every single moment of this premiere, her daily routine narrated with priceless candor.

Mary is not perfect, in fact quite messy.

Mary is not invulnerable and doesn’t even try to fight against her weakness.

Mary is not emotionless, a whirlwind of feelings simmering far beneath the surface of her apparent control.

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I have to admit that after this first episode I’m in love with Mary!

And, if possible, I fell in love with Caroline Dhavernas too, thanks to her way to approach the character of Dr. Harris, making her so real, so close to each one of us, simply and actually.

In this dynamic premiere, serious and funny at one time, viewers are thrown into the middle of this woman’s life, while she admirably unravels between her family, daughters and ex  -good in his mood and maybe in his intentions, but rather inconclusive, with his compliance as a choice to escape responsibilities –  and work, in fact, the works.

Engaged in E.R. we see her sharing her boss’ responsibilities simply because, as often happens, “you’re so much better than I am…”

But it’s the other job the one that unveils her involved body and soul, the support work, shared with Des, incomparable, the amazing Richard Short, in helping terminal patients to choose to die.

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We do not know why she does it, we still do not know her history enough to understand. What we can get, however, because we see it, is the consistency and the dedication, with which Mary validates value of freedom to choice of each own life.

This is nothing to do with financial business.

Quiet and discreet as she is, we must bow to the amazing Tara Armstrong for her delicate touch in picking up a subject as thorny, exploring it in substance, no space left to any hint of controversy, simply highlighting Mary’s deep moral involvement.

As though much of the routine was something to be done and what she does with Des something she cares to do, the intensity of her emotional involvement properly tells us about something that’s inside out justified, rather than seen as a cold business.

Suddenly the effort to get out of the chaotic routine, always showing an excellent mastery (kudos to Dhavernas for her astonishing delivery ), reveals the passionate fragility of this woman, with all her need to get lost and to vanish into something to find herself back, to know and to feel that she is still alive, mind and emotions trapped in the Mary that everyone expects, but still hers, still throbbing.

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Knocking on Joel’s door, approaching him on that couch, and breaking in a blow all the rules of common sense and of protocols so meticulously prepared as walls, erected to protect her vulnerability, respond to an impulse much more emotional than torrid.

In that bare and depressing room, in the frenzy of desire, there’s the Mary that no one knows, the Mary no one imagines, the woman who needs to close her eyes disappearing in intensity of sensations.

That she chooses Joel, that meeting him exacerbates her need, all of this is really really understandable.

We all are Mary when Joel’s apartment door opens, we all are bewildered as she is, swallowing empty because Joel has the appearance, the look, the voice of Jay Ryan. If they had cast him just for this “power”, they would have hit the target, totally.

However, it’s Jay Ryan, indeed.

Immediately after that priceless gift, all natural and physical, to arouse lustful thoughts, the powerful compelling intensity of his emotional performance takes over and prevails, and you totally forget the appearance, empathetically captured, bewitched by an emotional universe that strongly reveals the complexity and the depth of character’s personality.

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Even about Joel we know nothing, except that he is torn.

Torn, fragile, tormented, both in front of the mirror than sitting with Mary and Des, his eyes wandering restlessly to not leave open too many windows, then suddenly direct, to inspect others’ cracks to look for a control he knows he has no more but which is accustomed to manage.

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There’s too much, in Joel, because Mary did not choose to return.

Too much fair, charming and tender in that wound vulnerability, in that desperate as proud request for help.

Too much wrong and perverse, at the same time comfortable and reassuring, in that nonsense, irrational attraction, in that subliminal appeal to the zeroing of all defenses.

We get Mary, totally.

For a few moments, in the arms of Joel, in the nothing of passion, all makes sense.

She is alive.

So we’re to believe and to understand Joel’s hesitation too, so much as we think we understand his abrupt reaction to Mary’s words about his disease, as much as Mary seems to get him too.

We believe we have seen the painful side of Joel’s vulnerability, the conflict between what you would like and what it is, sadly.

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But Joel holds for us the bitterest of the surprises.

Conflict, hesitation, uncertainty, we took quite rightly, but his reasons are all wrong.

Joel investigates Mary and Des.

Joel allegedly pretending illness, undoubtedly simulates mood.

Yet the hesitation, transportation, conflict, sorrow, seem totally real in front of Mary and as she walks away.

Joel sees the same Mary that we see, and in spite of his will, he does not come out unscathed.

After all how can you come out unscathed and remain insensitive to the impact of so much truth,so much authenticity and honesty?

Especially when you’re the one who lies.

When you have responded to all her truth just with lies and pretense, the awareness can lash, nobody free by a brunt.

The honesty of Mary requires Joel to want to be honest, at least in responding to the desire.

Realizing it compromises the fictional castle built, the desire to close everything quickly reveals the fear which he cannot avoid to lie in response to Mary’s heartbreaking sincerity.

The clash between the emotional storms afflicting these two individuals which we have a tempting glimpse of, in this first episode, promises to be almost alone the core of the story, keeping us stuck to our chairs.

Stuck cheering for Mary, fearing what she fears, feeling what she feels, wishing for her the same she wishes. We know nothing of what will happen but we know that we will live it with the same intensity and involvement with which she will live, confident in our hearts that she will find her way to travel the path, no matter how bumpy it will be.

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In the boxroom, to her daughter discouraged in facing difficulties, Mary candidly confesses that yes, life sometimes really messes you up.

When the girl,confused, asked “what do we do?”, the answer is one that worth the journey.

The fiction’s one, because we talk about a TV series, the life’s one, because in fiction we hide the meaning of truth: “We become strong”.

Federica

edited by Lisa

 

 

Waiting for Mary Kills People Premiere

Posted on Updated on

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Thrilled by Mary Kills People premiere coming date we had the chance to pass the time exchanging a few words with Amy Cameron via Cameron Pictures Twitter Account.

She dedicated patience and attention to every question truly pleasantly.

We thought it would’ve been nice to collect the most interesting topics touched.

Enjoy.

On solving issues about assisted suicide regulation and plot…

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On Season 2 chances…

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On Mary…

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And on tremendous cast:

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We are totally awestruck, and you?

See you January 25 on Global TV!