This recap of The Stranded Season 1, Episode 7, “The Gate”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
As predicted, The Stranded Episode 7 yields precious few satisfactory answers for all its tropical mysteries, banking on a second season to deliver the real goods. Until then, “The Gate” opens in the aftermath of the previous episode’s ludicrous last-minute meteor shower, with the students desperate for answers and only confused further by Professor Lin (Sinjai Plengpanich) and… well, Professor Lin.
The imposter knows something about Kraam (Papangkorn Lerkchaleampote), whose psychedelic visions and eerie sketches do nothing for his own peace of mind or anyone else’s interpretation of him – Anan (Chutawut Phatrakampol) is convinced by the artwork that he and Lin are in cahoots. Then again he also assumes there’s a demon at work here, so perhaps his judgment isn’t to be trusted.
Battle lines are drawn and sides are picked in The Stranded Episode 7. Kraam is in direct opposition with Anan, but has an ally in May, who disappears in the jungle with him after their escape attempt is foiled. Fog separates them. As Kraam heads to unravel more of the show’s bizarre developments, Anan takes control of the students and suggests that they just make the most of their current predicament.
It’s beyond this that I must confess to having thrown my hands up in defeat. But the show must go on, so let’s try and piece it together. Kraam, on the advice of Professor Lin, ventures into the cave network and, attempting to swim through in search of answers, drowns. He’s pulled from the water (as a baby) by his stepfather (Winai Kraibutr), at which point their relationship through the years is stapled together in montage form. A staircase and a door lead present-day Kraam back into the jungle, to a bag of attire sprayed with the word dumbass, and to what a sign identifies as the highest point in Thailand. He’s cornered by armed students, one of whom reveals himself to be Joey (Oabnithi Wiwattanawarang).
This whole thing smacks of a writer having no idea where a story is going and constantly pulling out random ideas to stave off a conclusion. It’s all well and good having a plot full of twists and turns, but they have to be in service of something, a larger point or theme, and The Stranded Season 1, Episode 7 lacks all of these things – throughout, it has been one bizarre development after another, with little in the way of closure, catharsis or satisfying answers. Based on how little was actually resolved, there’s a strong chance of a follow-up season. But the question after this outing is whether anyone will bother to watch it.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.