Monday, July 13, 2009

Harper's Island Ending: Enough disappointment for all.

Well Harper’s Island. Congratulations. I can’t remember being disappointed this bad since SAW V. And that was straight up gnashing of teeth and wailing in the streets kind of disappointment. But until SAW XI comes out and further disappoints me…I am sure this will be on the top of my WTF disappointment list.

What is Harper’s Island? Well around February and March CBS started promoting the death out of this show. Most people assumed it was going to be a reality show type deal where every week someone was going to get offed and either the viewers or contestants were going to have to figure out what was going on.


I wish I could get married on a fishing island...

What it really turned out to be was a 13 week drama that was really a 13 hour long horror/slasher movie. It revolves around a bunch of people going to Harper’s Island because Henry Dunn and Trish Wellington are getting married. The main character is Abby Mills who is reluctant to come back to the island. 7 years ago a crazy serial killer went to town on the small island and killed some people including her mother. She left after her father, the sheriff, killed the serial killer dude John Wakefield but returns because Henry is her best friend. But the cycle of death begins to repeat itself as at least one person dies each day/each episode.

There was tons of buzz going around about this show. The most WTF comment from someone on the inside was 1/3 of the audience would go “who is that?!” when the killer was revealed. That of course didn’t make much sense because the killer is one of the main 25 people in the show. Despite that crazy contradiction and the fact CBS tried to kill its own show by shoving in a lousy slot the show had a pretty decent following.

Onward to the spoiler portion of my post and the ending of Harper’s Island. You have been warned.


They all look suspicious.

For WEEKS people have been portrayed as creepy and suspicious. Like the time when Trish had a CLEAR SHOT of Wakefield when Shane was being attacked but she didn’t fire the gun. Or how every single episode (up until he died) Cal looked like he was up to no good. Or the fact that Madison was the creepiest kid on the face of the planet. In the end none of this meant anything and was just to throw everyone off the trail. Or maybe these people naturally look like serial killers all the time.

Then there was the fact that Henry and Jimmy were set up to be the MOG red herrings the entire series. With Jimmy they might as well pasted a sign on him that said “I didn’t do it but blame me anyway”. Even when everyone thought J.D. was the murderer it was obvious that all the clues were still pointing to Jimmy. With Henry…well, people thought there was just more to him and sometimes he gave off a creepy vibe.


It's all about you Abby!

As for myself I thought it was Abby. XD I mean, that would be the most shocking murderer of all right? That the reason her father sent her away after the killings is that she was behind then and she actually is a crazy person and she blames a nonexistent person (John Wakefield) for the crimes. Now she is back on the island and has another crazy mental meltdown. Plus she was too damn innocent for me. I wanted something more to lurk behind that look at me, I am cute and need to be rescued self.

But NO! This series was pretty much obvious on who the killers were. Yes I said KILLERS. Everyone was under the assumption that there was only going to be one killer among the 25. And technically the people at CBS didn’t lie as John Wakefield was not considered in the count of 25. However…having John Wakefield come back and be one of the murderers is cheap.

I don’t think I would have minded if he was the reason behind the killings. Like a copycat or yes his kid/wife coming back to get revenge. But it took away from the MOG scariness of who the murderer could be once he was on the scene. I mean, it was pretty much given that his kid was also helping him out (although I was pulling for one of the “older” guests for being an ex-flame). And given the time frame we were given the suspect list was pretty low based on how old the kid was supposed to be.

So who was the killer?


Why was he killing everyone?

For Abby.

Does this make any sense?


Well maybe it makes sense. It is a typical scenario anyway. It was too much to dream for that Henry and Abby could actually be best friends. No that is crazy talk. Men and women can’t be best friends. There has to be sexual tension and one-sided love and she is like my sister but I love her anyway stuff. Only this time they are actually brother and sister which ups the incest factor.



So what is Henry’s exact reasoning behind all the murders? He loves Abby. Instead of actually being with Abby and asking her out and going the normal route, he decided to make Trish fall in love with him, convince her to have the wedding on murder island, and gather up all their closest family and friends to murder them. So he could be alone with Abby.

Is this making sense to anyone else?

If Henry was going to hold Abby against her will and lock her up anyway….why bother going through with the wedding and killing everyone else? People who had NOTHING to do with Wakefield. Well, maybe a few people did. Like the sheriff. That killing I understand. But why Wakefield and Henry killed any of Trish’s family is beyond me. Sure Trish’s dad was a jerk and treated him like crap. But…had Henry not been with her at all how would they have been involved?

Not to mention none of Henry’s friends deserved to die. Nor Trish’s friends. I guess if he wanted to get back at the locals of Harper’s Island that would be….understandable. I mean, it’s not like Wakefield actually DIED and he had to do revenge killing. Wakefield was just a random serial killer. It would have made more sense if Henry had kept to his random serial killer ways too, not gathered up people who cared for him and stab them in fun ways.

Now I might be more understanding if the ending was no so rushed and Henry had more to back up his reasons for killing. But like I said there were easier ways to get Abby than kill EVERYONE he knows. What the hell did Danny or Sully do to Henry? And J.D’s little girlfriend? And Uncle Marty whom died way too soon in the series? Perhaps that part of the plan, to bring everyone to Harper’s Island and squish them was Wakefield’s idea and Henry was just along for the ride to get Abby. But….seriously.



I was expecting the ending to be more like flashbacks showing the murders and the reasoning behind them. I would love to know how all of the killings went down, especially the ones that were more off screen like Beth and Maggie. I was expecting the killer to be revealed in a more dramatic way. I was expecting more survivors and all the loose ends to be tied up.

We get none of that. It is almost like this show was supposed to last for 14 episodes and OPPIES they had to cram in everything in 2 hours instead of 3 hours. The biggest issue that was just barely mention was Uncle Marty’s money. It started off as some huge reason for the killings and motivation for people to be pissed off. Instead it was just Henry’s little experiment to see if Malcolm was a bad person? No, not buying it. I think the writers had something else in mind and had to slap this excuse on at the end. There was also too many factors out of Henry’s control to make this money killing subplot work.

Why was cousin Ben killed? And in the most elaborate way if you ask me. None of the other…non-important guests were killed. They got to flee the island after Madison was kidnapped. So why was he selected to be killed when no one ever found his body and it never mattered ANYWAY?!

Why didn’t Wakefield kill Henry during the massacre? I mean, they did have a moment where their eyes met and had they been members of the opposite sex they would have fallen in love. But they weren’t. And Wakefield was running around killing people. Why didn’t he kill Henry after this moment? And why didn’t Wakefield kill Jimmy? And why would Wakefield even think Henry was his son? Just lala let me randomly pick some kid off the street to be my kid crap? No not buying it.

Why was Trish’s china broken (passed down from her mom)? If Henry wanted to kill everyone and be with Abby why mess with Trish before she died? If he was just doing this all to make everyone think JD was behind the murders (the murders that no one had discover yet) why would he kill JD later? Why not keep him alive and kill Jimmy? Either way….why?!

What was up with all the dead deer and random notes everywhere? Was that J.D being a jerk and Wakefield messing with Abby? It made the show look more complicated than it was. Everyone else was acting too insane and trying to throw the viewer off. But since no one flat out said they did these crimes we are left with missing pieces to the puzzle.

The way Henry was discovered to be the murderer was…less than stealer. Probably due to the fact that it wasn’t discovered he was the murderer. He just went TADA I am the killer time to die Trish. Which was sad. I will give the writers that. For a while I was hoping Trish was the killer because I hated her so much but when she realized Henry was behind it all I felt bad for her. But we were building up to this huge moment about discovering who the killers were…and Wakefield revealed himself to Abby on purpose and Henry just announced it. Very anticlimactic.

The saddest death for me was Sully’s. Most people say it is Chloe’s but no. It was Sully. And maybe Malcolm (if he was killed by Henry but I am sure it was Wakefield). I never blamed this dude for trying to get out of dodge when the getting out was good. And sure he jumped to conclusions with Jimmy and was less than lovely. But he was loyal to Henry, more so than Trish was. I think Trish was too far gone to be really upset about Henry. Sully had time to take in what was happening and that there was no escape. That and the way Henry taunted him for not leaving…just an asshole. :(

But I am happy Jimmy lived. XD He was such a cutie and never thought he was behind anything bad. Mainly because I thought it was too OBVIOUS that he and Henry were red herrings. I guess he and Abby got their happy ending but I am not sure how happy it will be since they will in therapy for the rest of their lives.

If you surf the internet tons of people feel great sympathy for Henry. Not me. So what your mom gave you up for adoption. It looks like you were being raised by loving people. Did you kill them Henry…I wonder. You found out your father was a serial killer? Well…you should have turned him in. Instead you decided to embrace the dark side? What part of this should I be feeling sorry for? He killed many people for no reason so he could have sex with his half sister. No sympathy for me.

I could mention other parts of the show that were messed up or didn’t flow with the end. But they are too many. I just wanted a show that had an ending that would explain all these twist and turns and leave me feeling AW that made sense. :( Curse you Harper’s Island.

I guess the reason why I am disappointed is CBS was hyping up this awesome and great show. What we get is a typical slasher flick with a typical ending. Except the part where Henry kept Jimmy alive. Unless that is the typical part as well, the killer making a grave mistake and that ends up being his downfall. Perhaps I would stop being disappointed if I didn’t expect great things from shows. :( Either way….the ending was let down and I am sad. Woe is me.


Karen said...

After being back from school and going to church (yeah at church of all places) all of my friends were talking about this 'Harper's Island' and how so and so got killed by this and this, and about the finale and I just sat there like wtf is everyone talking about? o__o Haha bummer, I hate slasher flicks, I was going to check this out.
Haha this reminds me of a fail Umineko so far, doesn't it? Hopefully Umineko doesn't end up like Harper's Island :O

Christina said...

Man, I couldn't find anyone to talk about Harper's Island with. It is no fun making theories alone.

I hate investing time and energy into a show to be let down in the end. I demand my 13 hours back!!!!

I haven't heard anything about Umineko. Is it any good?