Okay we are rolling along. Last episode might have been a letdown and I won’t lie, this one is a bit too. Anyway, let’s just dive into this Part 7 recap of Quibi’s THE STRANGER, mkay?
Part 7: 1AM
We head not to the police station, but to an alley dumpster, where Clare gets out of the car and tosses the gun in. She insists that she still needs to turn herself in but she needs to get rid of the gun. And I must ask, WHY CLARE?
The gun is essential. It obviously wouldn’t have any prints other than hers on it (because Carl E. is either a genius or NOT REAL) but maybe it’s got a serial number? The cops would have some way of finding its origins, right? Like I’m by no way an expert on guns but I doubt the police would simply tie Clare to the gun if she can spill out her story convincingly enough. Evidence is kind of essential right now and this the the only physical connection to Carl E. (Other than the knife, which Clare already dumped.)
Speaking of bets, Gas Station dude is CONVINCED that he and Clare have no chance of convincing the police that their story is real. He’s not white, and we all remember how the cop treated him. Some race dynamics come into play, which Clare understands.
Then the buddy comedy breaks. A news report blasts over the radio about a BRUTAL STABBING (it was like one stab, guys, chill out) and a cop being shot twice.
Okay, to start, I’m sure more violent crime occurs in L.A. on a daily basis. Also, it turns out that I was right to wonder why the POV shifted to Gas Station dude when Clare apparently “shot out the tires” of the cop’s motorcycle.
We get no opportunity to see Clare’s reaction to this revelation because Gas Station dude says he’s done. Gas Station dude knows he’s lost more than his job at this point. He’s fucked, and the “all is lost” music starts. And it’s like, come on, man. I liked you and you won’t even go down without a fight. Instead of getting back into his car and driving away, he walks through a beautifully lit set of fairground-like lights and closed storefronts. Clare follows, attempting to convince him that the shooting was Carl E. and NOT her.
She’s not a murderer! But she does have some ULTRA greasy hair now. Geez. Even looking at it triggers my greasy hair paranoia. But she barely takes the time to argue her point because they end up at the bus station, looking at the marquee of places they can go.
“El Paso, so we can cross over the Mexican border,” Gas Station dude says in true exposition.
Clare mentions the video text where Carl E. referred to Clare by her old online name “Boo Boo”. Clare speculates how Carl E. knows SO MUCH ABOUT HER while following Gas Station dude with the dog in the Trader Joe bag. She’s truly Dorothy now, and Gas Station dude makes another Wizard of Oz reference about her not being able to just click her red shoes to get out of this.
And you know, I love references. I use them in my own stories from time to time, but you gotta keep that shit pretty light. I don’t wanna be bitch-slapped with references unless I give consent first, Quibi.
But you know what, we’re on the train now. Gas Station dude takes a seat and makes Clare find her own.
I’ll ignore the dumb stuff and enjoy where we are. Why? Because I know from the trailer that this is where things are gonna get FUN again. And yes, the train stops as soon as it starts. The licks flicker. Then Clare looks up at the train’s security camera.
Now, I don’t know about you, but I take public transit a lot and I tend to find comfort in the on-board camera.Like, I’m just a girl and I like to think that that camera’s gonna have my back if I get sexually harassed or brutally murdered by a hooded stranger.
In this case, however, it’s the sign for the high tension score to pick up again.
Clare glances down at the exit and the lower seating portion of the train. She spots a set of now ICONIC shoes in the aisle, belonging to none other than Carl E. who leans out of his seat and blows her the best most menacing kiss ever.
HELLO KEY TRAILER MOMENT! I WAITED LIKE TWO MONTHS TO SEE YOU!
Clare gets up and grabs Gas Station dude. She pushes him in front of her and tells him to GO. This is odd to me, because I feel like I’d be using him as a meat shield, but I digress.
Carl E. gives them both a head start before giving chase. He’s not gonna murder them yet. He’s just having fun. Clare and Gas Station dude move into the next train car, building distance between them and Carl E. He shoots the window between the two train cars. Glass shatters. Clare screams, but pushes Gas Station dude onward. They move through another empty car. (Surely there’d be one or two other sleepy passengers on this train, but no.)
They get to the end of the train and open the exit door onto what the robo-lady announces is the “live track”. She says they shouldn’t leave the train, but with Carl E. approaching, they have no other choice.
Clare and Gas Station dude share a glance before the screan turns black.
Thoughts on Part 7
Blessed Be! Dane DeHaan is back!
I’m over Gas Station dude. He was fun at the gas station and I thought his tech knowledge would matter by this point but he is just as clueless as Clare. I also think he’s gonna get murdered. I really do.
Also worth mentioning is Clare’s now obvious unreliability factor. DID she shoot the cop? What happened “last time” in the unknown prior event Clare’s mom mentioned in Part 4? That all speculated, it does validate Gas Station dude’s existence in this world. I just wish he wasn’t such a defeatist. Like don’t let a greasy-haired white girl make you give your you life to move to Mexico, man. You’re better than this.
Quibi’s offering a 90-day free trial until April 30th, so you still have time to either see the light at the end of the tunnel or a train wreck.