The Devil’s Hour has landed on Amazon Prime Video, and here is our review of the new series!
Remember Peter Capaldi from his tenure as the lead character The Doctor in Doctor Who? Or may you are slightly older, and remember Malcolm Tucker from The Thick Of It, perhaps his most notorious role. However you know of Peter Capaldi, The Devil’s Hour will turn all typecasting or previous assumptions on its head. Something of a psychological-drama-come-thriller, this is the exact thing we all need in the lull prior to the Christmas period.
Just be warned; beyond this point, there are plot spoilers.
The Devil’s Hour – It’s All In The Namesake
The start of The Devil’s Hour starts very simply before the twists and turns begin to set in. A youngish mother wakes up early each morning, perturbed and disturbed; the bedside clock shows that it is precisely 33 minutes past 3:00 am. Every single night she does this – for some kind of strange reason. This period in the early hours is known as The Devil’s Hour – and it’s all in the namesake of this ingenious series. There is so much potential for a spin-off type series – although more on that in a minute.
There are problems with her son, and her marital situation is… complicated, to say the least. It initially looks a little bit suburban before things take a sudden turn.
There Is Perhaps A Missed Opportunity To Address Disability
Issac, by all accounts, is not exactly a normal child – and the entire premise of the series is based around him when there is a sudden abduction.
However, this feels a little bit like a missed opportunity to address disability perhaps – or, well, the subject of difference, in a culture that insists on conformity and does not prize vulnerability. Issac can see what perhaps is termed ‘other’; the family home is somewhat haunted by ghostly apparitions, though this is the product of events that happen all the time or are changed by timelines without rhyme or reason. Childish drawings appear on the family fridge, nightmares take place, and you hear the sound of children laughing.
However, Issac is also bullied – because such abilities mark him as ‘other’. It would have been a brilliant opportunity to address the topic of disability – rather than using this as a plot device. He is obliged to do exactly what his peers tell him – even if it involves hitting himself harder and harder across the face.
The grandmother in all of this initially appears to have Dementia – but is actually like Issac. She can see ‘the other’. This is slightly lazy as a plot device, even if it brings about poignant scenes.
Twisted? You Haven’t Seen Anything Yet
Like a good Agatha Christie Whodunnit, The Devil’s Hour will keep you guessing until the very last second as to what has transpired. If you think you have this figured out, you have seen nothing yet – and although that can be extremely frustrating at times, it’s worth it in the end.
Peter Capaldi plays the part of what you might call a serial killer – but he has lived and died a thousand lives, as he knows he will be resurrected to the start of his life over and over. Because of this, he has also worked out that people can trade places when it is their turn to die – however, meaning that if someone does not die in the way that they are supposed to, someone else will in the end.
This presents complications, however, similar to themes in Doctor Who – because just who do you choose to save, and why? In his mind, he saves children – perhaps by taking them away from neglectful, dangerous situations. He can see the future; therefore, he knows what will happen. He prevents murders by changing the places of aggressor vs victim.
The mother of the series becomes tangled as their lives cross, with the body count slowly racking up, cumulating in a terrifying end.
Trigger Warnings Are Maybe Needed For Some Scenes
There is a dramatic suicide scene in this – but it is also rewritten and played seemingly on a loop. Given that this is perhaps a controversial topic, there should be perhaps warnings in place for particular episodes – just to ensure that there is no potential distress caused. There are also visceral scenes that include the suggestion of murder, too.
The Devil’s Hour Ending? What Ending?
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The ending is somewhat terrifying, though it does beg the question: what happens next? There is perhaps the potential for a spin-off series, though because of the plot, one Peter Capaldi might not be involved in a sequel, should there be one.
The mother slowly becomes more and more involved with the father of Issac, and it looks initially as if their complicated martial situation is slowly abating. Issac is returned home from initially what looks like an abduction – and the serial killer character of Capaldi is eventually apprehended, though all is not what it seems.
Both he and the mother can go between timelines; they see the happenings around them of ‘the other’, where ghostly figures from other times appear before them – knowing what is present and what is not always easy to tell, either.
Issac is symptomatic of this, too
However, the mother is forced – by events – seemingly to make a choice. She can see that in another lifetime, she is married to the Detective she has worked ardently alongside for so long – but how? Her son, Issac, ends up in a house fire; he was not supposed to exist, and was never supposed to be born. The series ends with all the twists and turns being resolved – apart from what the mother asks Capaldi in the decades to come. She willingly gives herself over to the flames in a house fire when she is called upon to save her son; her partner had deliberately left him inside.
It’s addictive, binge-worthy, and a must-watch. Go forth.
The Devil’s Hour is now available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.
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- Peter Capaldi
- A missed opportunity to address disability