This Channel Zero review contains spoilers.
Channel Zero Season 2 Episode 3
(exclusive photo: No-End House Room 3)
“It gets in your head, finds your weaknesses. It makes these things out of them.”
“Like memories that eat other memories.”
The third episode of Channel Zero: No End House acknowledges the key assumption that memories are being eaten, but it also elaborates that the house is exploiting its inhabitants’ weaknesses. In the case of Margot’s father or J.D.’s vain shallowness, the instrument of their torture is easy to spot, but Channel Zero continues to carry out a careful unfolding of the plight of Jules and even the helpful but still mostly mysterious (suspiciously so) Seth. The horror of losing oneself and becoming a drone like the many seen around town is at the core of “Beware the Cannibals.”
It’s especially nice to get answers while still waiting to be let in on some secrets. While at first it’s edifying to hope that the Mr. Sleator simulacrum wants to be more human for his daughter by practicing saying hello in the mirror and confessing that he ate the memory of Margot’s mom, his bestial nature soon becomes clear. Thus by comparing Mr. Sleator’s behavior to J.D.’s skin issue, we immediately know what’s going on with the “better version” of him, too, and are wary of his deception. It’s like realizing your best friend is a vampire and knowing you’re going to have to stake her.
But what’s going on with Jules? She seems to be in ecstasy when touching the egg-like sphere, but how does that reference her weakness? We’ve seen her memories of what looks like her and her sister with her mom, yet she tells Seth that Margot “is the closest thing I have to a sister.” What gives? Plus she conjured up a memory and even several other pools of dreamblood, but for what purpose. Jules is an enigma, but she will no doubt provide an enjoyable puzzle to solve in the second half of the season.
Seth, however, remains the biggest question mark of them all. He seems innocent enough telling Margot that what he saw in Room 5 was his family; after all, he was in a string of bad foster homes, so that sounds like a pretty good weakness for the No-End House to exploit. But we’ve seen nothing of how it manifests with him, and he remains a helpful companion as he grows closer and closer to Margot regardless of his secretive nature.
After all, isn’t it they together who discover the edge of this false world created by Room 6? Isn’t it Seth that made loud noises to divert the cranky and famished Mr. Sleator from the girl’s hiding place in the school? But then there are moments like when he blithely asks J.D., who’s picking at his decaying arm, “You falling apart already?” and then calmly smiles and returns to bed. Something is up with this guy; he cannot be trusted!
It’s easier to feel a little more trusting, if cautious, of Dylan, the veteran No-End House dweller seeking to rescue his wife, Lacey. It’s he that confirms that the house eats memories, adding that those who stay too long end up like the shushing librarian, or the neighbor with the garden hose: little more than living vegetables. His wife, Lacey, is clearly suffering the early stages of No-End House zombieness. Perhaps Dylan’s knowledge could be key in escaping Room 6.
Or maybe there is something at the low spot in the wall that Seth and Margot ferreted out. Surely it won’t be a matter of just walking out, and Margot’s dad will almost certainly not stay at the bottom of the hole the young adults trapped him in. Plus Jules has taken to putting her whole head on the creature-filled sphere, and J.D. is going to need to feed soon. Plenty of dangers lurk for the remaining three episodes of Channel Zero: No End House to explore, and the show continues to hit its mark each week while ramping up the terror.