Skip to main content

BuzzFeed: "Your Next Television Obsession Is French Supernatural Thriller The Returned"

You won’t just become addicted to Sundance Channel’s French-language drama about people returning from the dead; it will haunt your dreams.

"Your Next Television Obsession Is French Supernatural Thriller The Returned"

In the opening sequence of extraordinary French thriller The Returned, a yellow butterfly, pinned and placed in a display case, mounted on a wall, unexpectedly flutters back to life and smashes through its glass prison. It’s an enigmatically beautiful moment, and an apt metaphor for the overall premise of The Returned (which premieres Oct. 31 at 9 p.m. on the Sundance Channel), a collision between the worlds of the living and the dead that leaves both shattered.

Created by Fabrice Gobert (who shares directing duties with Frédéric Mermoud) and based on a 2004 film of the same name, The Returned (in French, Les Revenants) is unlike anything else on television, on either side of the Atlantic, an atmosphere-laden and character-driven drama that deftly blends supernatural horror, psychological terror, and familial tragedy. (If you’d like some sort of signposts into this unknown territory, I’d argue that The Returned is The Walking Dead multiplied by The 4400 plus Twin Peaks and divided by In the Flesh and, say, Anthony Minghella’s Truly, Madly, Deeply.)

The series — which has been renewed for a second season that will air in November 2014 on Canal+ in France —depicts what happens when the dead return to a French village, seemingly unaged, and the lives of those forever altered by the death of a loved one and their return. (You might be asking, Isn’t this similar to that ABC midseason show Resurrection, which is based on Jason Mott’s novel The Returned and is about what happens to a town when the dead return? While both have resounding similarities — the dead when they come back haven’t aged and seem to be alive; there is a seemingly mute boy at the center of each show; the time between death and return is different for each character, etc. — they aren’t directly related. An English language version of Les Revenants is already in the works as well for U.K. television under the aegis of Shameless and State of Play creator Paul Abbott.)

Each of the eight episodes that comprise The Returned’s first season focuses on the death of a specific character: morose teen Camille (Yara Pilartz), who was killed three years earlier in a horrific bus accident that killed 37 of her classmates as well and splintered her grieving family; musician Simon (Pierre Perrier), who mysteriously dies on his wedding day, leaving behind a pregnant fiancée in Adèle (Clotilde Hesme); eerily silent child “Victor” (Swann Nambotin), whose presence seems to presage doom and who has an ability to conjure a person’s darkest fear. Oh, and did I mention that one of the dead is a cannibalistic serial killer named Serge (Guillaume Gouix) who likes to repeatedly stab women in a subterranean tunnel and then eat their internal organs? One of his victims, stoic nurse Julie (Céline Sallette), survived Serge’s final attack seven years earlier before he seemingly vanished, though she has been haunted by the notion that she could come face to face with him again. Especially when a local waitress, Lucy Clarsen (Ana Girardot), is stabbed in the same tunnel as Julie…

Continue reading at BuzzFeed...

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Katie Lee Packs Her Knives: Breaking News from Bravo's "Top Chef"

The android has left the building. Or the test kitchen, anyway. Top Chef 's robotic host Katie Lee Joel, the veritable "Uptown Girl" herself (pictured at left), will NOT be sticking around for a second course of Bravo's hit culinary competition. According to a well-placed insider, Joel will "not be returning" to the show. No reason for her departure was cited. Unfortunately, the perfect replacement for Joel, Top Chef judge and professional chef Tom Colicchio, will not be taking over as the reality series' host (damn!). Instead, the show's producers are currently scouring to find a replacement for Joel. Top Chef 's second season was announced by Bravo last month, but no return date has been set for the series' ten-episode sophomore season. Stay tuned as this story develops. UPDATE (6/27): Bravo has now confirmed the above story .

Me Want Food: Jenna Gets Famously Fat on "30 Rock"

I don't know about you, but I've already ordered my "Me Want Food" t-shirt from the NBC store. Last night's episode of 30 Rock ("Jack Gets in the Game") was, in my opinion, one of the strongest of the series and has officially pushed the zany comedy into the realm of Arrested Development : deftly plotted and intricately layered, with so many jokes piled atop of jokes that it requires several viewings in order to catch them all. While at its heart, 30 Rock is a workplace comedy, it's left that narrow pigeonhole behind to become a witty example of how intelligent and taut humor can work (and flourish) on television... and exist in harmony with hilarious throwaways like the Thriller -inspired Werewolf Bar Mitzvah music video that would have done the AD crew proud. I want Will Arnett to appear on this series whenever possible. His gay exec Devin is hilarious, manipulative, and has an inexplicable weakness for Kenneth the Page, but he claims to have

"Gilmore" Guy: Who is New Showrunner David Rosenthal?

A few days later and I am still processing the news that Gilmore Girls showrunner Amy Sherman-Palladino--and her exceptionally talented husband, writer and producer Daniel Palladino-- announced their departure from the whip-smart drama after six seasons. The news wouldn't be such a blow, save for the fact that Gilmore Girls is as much about Amy and Daniel as it is about Lorelai and Rory. In their capable hands, the show explored a supremely complicated family dynamic through the beautiful friendship of mother and daughter Lorelai and Rory... and did so with smart dialogue usually found in a Nick & Nora film rather than on television. Zany subplots abounded as did quirky, beloved supporting characters. And now, after six seasons (including this most recent--and very shaky--season where Amy and Daniel wrote less episodes than usual), Amy and Daniel are passing on the showrunning torch to... Dave Rosenthal?!? For those of you in the audience unfamiliar with David Rosenthal ,