Lodge 49 continues to expand the bizarre mythology of the Order of the Lynx while developing its characters in “The Mysteries” – a surprisingly moving episode.
“The Mysteries” opened with a flashback to a young Larry Loomis (Kenneth Walsh) that suggested the episode would be about him, even if it wasn’t entirely clear in what way. This, it turns out, was a smart decision on the part of Lodge 49, which used the Order of the Lynx’s Sovereign Protector as a mouthpiece for not just the bizarre alchemical secrets of the Lodge, but also thoughts on destiny, borderline abuse, and dignity. It was a solid-enough hour that built to an effective, surprisingly moving conclusion, even if it once again didn’t do much for the series’ overarching plot.
It was refreshing to see young Larry’s scepticism about the Lodge. When his mother explained to him that she’d be leaving him to live on his own, because “the Sovereign Protector needs me”, Larry drily replied, “Mom, he does dry cleaning.” Because so much of Lodge 49 concerns perspectives from those within the Order of the Lynx, you really only get that bemused reaction from Liz (Sonya Cassidy). The show needs more of it.
And, for that matter, it needs more of Liz, who in “The Mysteries” is grappling with self-loathing and a general sense of pointlessness that made her even more endearing. Most notable was a conversation she shared with Dud (Wyatt Russell), who returned to collect his things before moving into Larry’s trailer. She’s right that her brother hasn’t properly come to terms with the nature of his father’s death, and that it would undoubtedly be healthier for him to do so, but he’s also right that her relentless grown-up cynicism and worry is preventing her from actually living.
Speaking of Dud, he has a new temp job working the night shift at a graveyard, but he’s more concerned with getting balls-deep into babble about the Lodge’s true history – with which Larry believes he’s connected. That might well be true, but “The Mysteries” doesn’t comment one way or the other. It’s more about the dangers of believing slavishly in some notion of preordained fate and destiny, especially when you’re willing to contrive evidence to support the theory, or, in Larry’s case, when you clearly need to be focusing on other things.
Ernie (Brent Jennings) tries to get through to Larry about this, including suggesting assisted-living, but Larry isn’t having any of it – and he has enough of his old spirit left to convince Ernie to let him be. These two shared lots of nice scenes in “The Mysteries”, and Larry’s eventual quiet, happy death was a sad but fitting end to their friendship. With the Lodge’s emissary from London on the way – there was a funny bit in which members of the Lodge described the emissary as living a “rock star life” when in reality he lives with his parents – this episode served as a useful reminder that for all its hidden secrets, lofty titles and alchemical histories, Lodge 49 is really a show about people who are all trying to find something to believe in.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.