With only three episodes left until The Terror: Infamy finishes up its story-line, there seems to be very few mysteries left to solve. We know about Chester’s birth and can see how he is struggling with his identity and the guilt involved with his inability to protect those he loves. We know all about Yuko and understand why she is doing what she is, knowing that her quest is one of love and loss. We see the mistreatment of the Japanese prisoners at the hands of the American government, and history has taught us how that will play out.
So, with 1/3 of the season still remaining, what can we expect? Let’s take a look at where we are and see if we can see a path forward for this show.
At the beginning of this week’s episode, we are given confirmation that Yuko did not perish in last week’s fire. She is very, and I mean very, messed up, but she is still around. She has taken over the body of a physician and is assembling, or repairing, herself with body parts and skin from other cadavers in the morgue. After some disgusting sewing and stitching, we see Franken-Yuko arise from the table and begin to apply makeup to her destroyed face. Chester, after having his letters to Luz returned to him, goes escapes the camp and goes AWOL. The camp is overrun by tuberculosis and Major Bowen is taken hostage to try to get proper medical attention sent to the camp.
“Yuko did not perish […] and is assembling, or repairing, herself with body parts and skin from other cadavers in the morgue.”
This week was extremely Bowen-heavy, and for good reason. As the show has progressed and we got to know more about Yuko and her story, we became almost sympathetic to her. She is a grieving mother, wronged during her lifetime, who is trying to recoup what she lost. She is driven by love, loss, grief, and guilt. Not revenge and hatred, as we originally presumed. With these developments to her character and the evolution of our feelings toward her, we needed a new villain to rear their head to rally against. Major Bowen fits that bill perfectly.
Bowen has a run-in with Yuko during this episode, an event that leaves him paranoid and wary of the Japanese prisoners he is in charge of. She enters his body, and he realizes pretty quickly what is happening and it changes his perspective about the job he has. Before, you see, he was just being a loyal soldier, dutifully carrying out the orders from his higher-ups. Now, after getting a taste of the paranormal, his bigotry and hatred of the Japanese people comes out in full force.
The reason they won’t look me in the eye is because they know something that I don’t know. Now, until somebody tells me what kind of evil spirit or oriental magic tricks have taken over this place, nobody is leaving. Your people made this mess. Now you gotta live with it.- Major Bowen
After a scuffle with Ken, who was trying to talk him into bringing doctors to the camp to help those with tuberculosis, Bowen is held captive in his barracks. “What does she want with me?”, he asks the scared prisoner, “Revenge? I am just doing my job”. His justifications for what he is doing to the prisoners is his loyalty to America, not realizing that the vast majority of those he is imprisoning are American citizens. When the cavalry comes to save him, brought to the house by Amy, his Japanese secretary, Bowen orders his men to take Ken away peacefully. When he walks out the door, however, he orders the men to kill Ken, and they happily oblige. Back in his office, Bowen makes some creepy advances on Amy as she bandages up his head wound. She tells him that he broke his word, that Ken was just trying to keep kids from dying in the camp. “Here’s a lesson,” he tells her, “some dogs you just have to put down”.
So, here’s where we are. Yuko is back on the trail of her son and Luz, having taken the information of where they are hiding out from Luz’s father before gruesomely killing him. She is relentless and will stop at nothing to get back to her Taizo and to her dream of an afterlife filled with family and love. Bowen, after getting a small look into the horror that is chasing Chester, has become the villain we thought he could be if he was ever untethered from his pretense of impartiality. We know, though, that the Japanese families in the camp will be allowed to return home. We know that this is going to happen soon, too, because the case is sitting on the desk of the Supreme Court and we know that President Roosevelt will be suspending the Executive Order. With Bowen’s power soon to be relinquished, is Yuko, then, our remaining hope for horror in the last few episodes?
She is starting to ramp up the violence, sure, but with Chester’s annoying inability to accept his past and thank the Nakayama family for taking him in and loving him, we are starting to root for her. Chester is extremely unlikable and has made every wrong decision in his quest for love. Yuko, even with her Terminator-like resilience and devotion to her cause, is starting to become the hero of the story. As I mentioned last week, I identify with her. As a father, there’s nothing I wouldn’t do to be with my children. Here’s to the hope that, in the next three weeks, the show will bring the horror and make us remember who the real heroes of the story are.
The Terror: Infamy airs every Monday night on AMC. Keep your eyes on Nightmare on Film Street as we continue to recap each episode and give you the latest and greatest horror news available on the web. While you’re at it, join our Facebook group, Horror Fiends of Nightmare on Film Street and let us know what you think!