Hello friends and welcome back to TV Tuesday! Today I’m going to talking all my thoughts on the first season of the TV show, Chapelwaite.
Just as I was starting to create my post for this I see that this was renewed for a second season… and I’m not really sure why… this worked as a limited series, but I guess we’ll see.
Chapelwaite is a TV show that is based on the short story, Jerusalem’s Lot by: Stephen King.
Part of me thinks that this made a perfect limited series because of the way it ended, I wasn’t a true fan of the ending, but I did like how it closed everything off, and as I read in an article, this was based off a short story and they don’t have any more material to pull from. Obviously this wouldn’t be the first time a TV show goes off script, but I don’t think it needs more. If anything, I thought this series should have been shorter than its 10 episode run.
But let’s get into it.
The show starts off with Charles Boone on a ship with his three kids and their mother who is dying. She unfortunately dies on the boat and now the Boone family head to Chapelwaite, the name of the house that was owned by his late uncle.
The town, wow, the town. They are what you’d expect of a mid 19th century who see people who are different from them. So first of all, the town already seem to hate the Boones and we’re not really sure why. There’s just a lot of hate there, apparently his uncle did something really terrible. Secondly, Charles’ children are not white, they are mixed race, making them hated just for that. Ugh it was so hard to watch at times because these poor children get picked on, teased, mocked, abused. It’s to the point they get kicked out of school and church as if they did anything wrong.
Instead these children get home schooled by Rebecca, who is very sweet, but definitely has ulterior motives for taking on the job. She’s a writer you see, and she thinks if she writes a story about the Boone family, she’ll know what happened to her father because she knows his death is related to the Boone family. Sneaky, sneaky.
Then a child mysteriously dies of an illness that has been plaguing the town and she says it as Stephen Boone who did it to her. This now has the town hating the Boones even more. They claim that he isn’t really dead and that Charles should dig up his cousin’s grave.
He doesn’t want to because he’s afraid of what he’ll find… so in private he does… guess what the grave is empty. This leads to even more weirdness as he’s hearing rats in the walls and they’re not sure what it is.
The thing with this show is it’s good, and it’s eerie in the way it’s shot; it’s really dark, literally and figuratively, and it’s really creepy, it’s definitely what you expect from a King adaption, but it felt like there was a lot of dead air. They spent so much time setting up the creepy that it felt like we were waiting around for things to happen. That’s why I said that I thought it should have been shorter than 10 episodes; I think this could have been done in a good 8 episodes, but it is what it is.
After the incident in the house with the rats, Charles thinks he’s going crazy, so he’s ready to commit himself to the asylum, but it’s his son Tane, who finds something in the creepy barn that explains some of the family secrets.
Meanwhile, these creepy dead things start to come around. One of them ends up luring Charles to Jerusalem’s Lot where they find the madness is connected to an ancient book. This book is something else, it’s really strange that it has this much power over these vampires.
This is also where Loa, Charles’ middle child and daughter finds all of Rebecca’s writing on the Boone family. She exposed and she has nothing to say for herself other than she’s sorry. I mean, at that point what are you going to say. We find out she’s come to love the children and is ready to abandon her writings. She says she never meant to hurt them… but I mean, you’re writing about their family… what did you expect? Them to just be okay with it? Especially after everything they went through with the town, she was the one person they thought they could trust.
I also want to say that I think Loa was my favourite character, she’s a take no shit from no one and I really liked that about her. She even went through a period where she didn’t even speak to her own father after their mother passed, like damn.
Stephen and uncle Phillip show up one night and they have to ward them off because they don’t know what they are at this point. But Loa, oh her poor soul, she’s attracted to the proposition they give her. She has a bad leg and wears a brace, no matter what she’s tried none of them have been a perfect fit, but Stephen and Phillip can make that brace go away… all she has to do is succumb to them and become what they are.
It’s too bad, she chooses before her father can reach her. At first we’re left to believe that, that is the end of Loa… but we see her again. We see her with the rest of the vampire fleet. We see, in a vision that Charles has the world in which the vampires plan to take over. The town is under attack.
And yet he town is still divided! You’d think there would be some unity, but no. Charles explains to them that he is nothing like his relatives and that he wants to take them down just as much as they do, but they still don’t listen. They don’t believe that these vampires exist, really.
They only start to believe when they see the constables’ wife, who was turned into a vampire, burn to a crisp in the day time. It takes them a while to come around, but they slowly start to.
Also, I’d just like to side step here for a second and talk about the minister. He has his own strange plotline, I’m not sure what the point of it was because in the end it effected nothing – or well I didn’t think so. He ends up cheating on his wife, they have a baby together (no one knows this is his child of course) but the baby is born so deformed.
The two plan to head out of town and start a new life together, only all this craziness with the town starts, so he only buys her a ticket out.
She gets killed (possibly eaten) by the rogue vampires in the woods and same with their child. People find out about his affair and wow – I mean the main guy, is he supposed to be the mayor of the town? He seems to know everyone’s business and hates on anything that doesn’t benefit him, god he’s awful… his daughter is no better and that’s who the minister was married too.
When he says he’s going off to fight, she wants to have one more meal with him and to forgive him because she might not get the chance again. Of course she freakin’ poisons him because why wouldn’t she? She wasn’t there for forgiveness but revenge. THEN she kills herself? Why did she do that? That’s never explained. Then when her father finds her he kills himself, like alright then.
I guess the show was trying to figure out how to ends certain character’s stories so they just killed them off? The minister got what was coming to him I guess… I guess they all did for being horrible people.
After the attack where they want the – I’m calling it the magic book because it seems to hold a lot of power – Tane ends up giving it to Loa because he doesn’t know any better and he’s so upset with himself when he does, so heartbreaking.
So now they have to go and get this book back, so it’s looking like the town is finally forming some unity to do this to be rid of these vampires.
It’s in the dark that the one that lured Charles in, in the beginning comes back and attacks Charles and his men in the dead of night. Now, Charles is faced with a decision in order to free his family.
Rebecca goes out with them and she finds her father among them and she realizes that it was her father’s choice to be like this and not the Boone’s. There’s no saving him, whereas that’s what she thought she was going to do, she thought the Boone’s had him under some spell but they have free will.
When they arrive back to Chapelwaite Rebecca confesses her love for both Charles and his family and that she’ll do everything she can to look after them and keep them safe… even Loa. Loa has come back but her siblings don’t trust her. I felt so bad for her, she made a choice she thought was going to make her life better, I think any kid would have done the same thing, heck I think there are a lot of adults who would have done the same.
Honor, the oldest, is probably the worst in believing her sister is still in there. Loa even says she regrets the decision she made, but she can’t go back. So, in the end she bites her father so that he becomes a vampire, they fake his death… and this is supposed to stop the curse?
He sails out to sea in a little rowboat as day is breaking, which I’m like he’s not going to catch on fire in the open like that? But that’s how the show ends, with him leaving, and Rebecca staying to care for the kids. I mean, I can see how it could come back, like we could see Charles’ adventures, or we could see him come back. So who knows. It felt pretty final, but sometimes things don’t stay dead.
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