“Death by misadventure” – The Geekiary
The first episode of Chucky the first season, “Death by Misadventure”, gave me everything I wanted as a longtime fan of the Child’s play franchise. I find the dynamic between Chucky and Jake quite interesting.
It takes a lot of creativity and dedication to keep an iconic, decades-long horror franchise alive without disappointing fans. It is clear that Don Mancini loves what he created and he still has a lot of stories to tell. Depending on the promotional material, the Chucky TV shows are pretty important to him with Mancini, more or less, which makes Jake Wheeler (Zachary Arthur) look like what Mancini was as a gay teenager. I liked Jake as the protagonist. There’s a lot going on in his life that Chucky has clearly started to tap into.
‘Death by Misadventure’ opened with a creepy Halloween-scene that didn’t make sense to me until the last moments of the episode. For those of you who don’t know, the Chucky The television series will delve into the history of Charles Lee Ray. He’s the serial killer whose soul has taken over the Good Guy Dolls (and others) throughout the franchise. And that’s what I’m here for!
We then hopped on Jake to find a Chucky doll at a local garage sale and bring it home. Jake is an aspiring artist and he creates weird (and spooky) sculptures using a variety of doll parts. Her family life has not been the same since her mother (also an artist) died in a car accident. His father, Lucas (Devon Sawa), struggled to cope with such a loss and the pervasive financial problems.
Lucas also denies that 14-year-old Jake is gay. Their relationship is quite abusive, with Lucas showing a level of affection towards Jake during some scenes and immediately exploding in others. Things with Lucas’ twin brother Logan (also played by Devon Sawa) are no better, with Lucas refusing to accept Logan’s financial aid. There’s also something about Logan’s wife, Bree Wheeler (Lexa Doig). Apparently she is hiding some secret.
Aside from trying to deal with his father, Jake is also bullied in school. His cousin Junior’s girlfriend Lexy (Alyvia Alyn Lind) surprised me. I didn’t expect her to be so mean to Jake. Junior (Teo Briones) was mean to Jake as well, but I think he’s the type to make fun of Jake at family reunions instead of embarrassing him in public. Also, I want to know why the two cousins are so cold towards each other. What happened between these two?
There is a bit of happiness in Jake’s life, however. He has a cute little crush on Devon Evans (Björgvin Arnarson) who operated a true crime podcast that Jake enjoyed listening to. According to Devon, the murder rate has increased in Hackensack. In my opinion, the rise in murders could be linked to the late 2017s Cult of Chucky. We know Tiffany (Jennifer Tilly) and a possessed Nica Pierce (Fiona Dourif) are set to appear soon.
Anyway, although Jake has yet to tell Devon how he feels about him, I think Jake opening up to Devon might be a bit difficult because Devon is friends with Junior. I really liked the scene where Devon refused to see Junior as Jake’s bully. The interaction felt real to me. Often times, someone won’t believe what you say about Person A because Person A isn’t acting problematically in front of them. It’s very “Hmmm. Are you sure he’s a bad person? He’s always been nice to me. I could understand why Jake was frustrated with Devon when he didn’t believe him.
“Death by Misadventure” was about introducing the current cast before the folks at OG got into the narrative. From what I could tell, Andy has already called Jake to warn him about Chucky. I can’t wait to see Andy (he’s the kid from the first Child’s play movie all grown up now) team up with Jake to take down Chucky.
However, don’t think that all of these new character introductions have slowed the pace of the storytelling, because they haven’t. By the time Jake picked up Chucky from the yard sale, franchise fears kicked in, including Chucky who freaked out a bunch of people. I loved the tension between Chucky and Jake’s cat because you knew the cat’s days were numbered. Plus, Chucky showing up with the automated “Hi, I’m Chucky” always gave me goosebumps. The fact that the series brought back Chucky’s OG voice, Brad Dourif, is much appreciated. The scenes where Bree found Chucky in Jake’s bedroom closet and where Lexy was left alone with Chucky in the science lab were done in an impressive way.
Also, this time Chucky is a little off balance (more than usual). He decided to talk to a whole crowd of people during the school’s Talent Show. Yes, he did make Jake look like a ventriloquist, but in my opinion the timing indicated that due to the modern setting, Chucky could walk and talk when he wanted to and people were probably going to attribute it to him. a very expensive animatronic. 2019 Child’s play the reboot movie did the same, but like the Chucky The TV series has shown that a supernaturally possessed doll acting like a little animatronic intended for children will always be scarier than a robotic doll with a messed up AI.
With the first season of Chucky being eight (one hour) episodes long, you are certainly not going to take as many victims compared to the bloodbath in the Child’s play movie theater. But as long as I get at least one kill per episode, I’ll be happy. “Death by Misadventure” gave me that and I can’t wait to see the iconic doll use more creative ways to push people away and make it look like an accident.
You can already tell that the people who die will make Jake look like a major suspect. In addition, Chucky is already the father of a queer child (years 2004 Chucky seed). So there’s a chance he’s interested in adopting Jake and wanting to work to push him into a life of crime and murder. The final moments of the episode actually showed Chucky justifying the murder of a particular person (I don’t want to spoil it for you) and saying he did it for Jake. As I mentioned before, Chucky exploits Jake’s vulnerability, and it will be very interesting to see if Jake is able to escape such an emotionally manipulative trap set by a psychotic doll.
I can’t wait to see the rest!
Also, well done to whoever is in charge of Chucky soundtrack!
Farid has a double master’s degree in psychology and biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in molecular genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville and The Game Master of Somerville. It gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime / manga, video games, and movies.
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