Severance — Episode 2, Half Loop Review
Who? What? Where?
We kick episode two off with Helly R, Britt Lower (“High Maintenance (TV)”, “Future Man (TV)”), as we see the process of her brain being split into two, well, her brain being drilled and a chip inserted at least.
We also get to see what she saw when she ran into the stairwell in episode one, it’s Mr. Milchick, Tramell Tillman (“Godfather of Harlem (TV)”, “Elementary (TV)”), who is the one guiding her through the Severance process.
Mark Scout, Adam Scott (“Big Little Lies (TV)”, “Between Two Ferns: The Movie”), arrives in the office early to perform his new duties as the manager, which is basically cleaning and dusting, but he also removes a team photo from all of the desks and hides them in the store cupboard.
Helly arrives and can’t believe the weekend has gone, she feels like she never left. Mark is trying to train her in what they do, but they don’t really know why they’re doing it. They look at numbers on a screen, some will elicit a feeling, the scary ones need to be binned. But it takes a while to get it and Helly is just staring at a screen of numbers.
Mr. Milchick arrives with melon and they have a ‘party’ to celebrate Helly starting. This involves passing a red ball between them and saying something about themselves. Helly decides she’s going to quit and writes “I Quit” on a post-it and heads to the elevator.
But the elevators are equipped with scanners that detect any kind of notes and stop you passing this to your ‘outie’, your outside self. She is caught, but Mark intervenes and takes the rap for her, he’s taken away by Mr. Grainer, Michael Cumpsty (“Tommy (TV)”, “Madam Secretary (TV)”), to the “break room”.
We see Mark outside of the office, on a date, which doesn’t go well, particularly when he comes across some people protesting against Severance. The next morning he calls in sick and decides to visit the address on the letter Petey, Yul Vazquez (“The Outsider (TV)”, “ I Am the Night (TV) “), gave to him.
Back in the office and Irving, John Turturro (“ Transformers: The Last Knight “, “Barton Fink”), who has previously been reprimanded for nodding off, does so again, or so they tell him, we see that he’s seeing some kind of black goo engulfing his work station.
He’s taken to Wellness for a checkup where he bumps into Burt, Christopher Walken (“Seven Psychopaths”, “The Deer Hunter”), who is the head of ‘optics’, which means he puts the art around the building.
Mark finds Petey, but Petey doesn’t know what they do down there and he’s not doing so well since he had his chip removed, not well at all.
Another great episode of Severance and some brilliant directing from Stiller. He adds to the whole oddness of the episode and quirkiness of it. I’m intrigued as to what is going on at Lumon and whether any of them will be able to find out.
Originally published at https://www.ocmoviereviews.com.