The Outsider episode 8 recap: “Foxhead” affirms the inevitable in all its nastiness

February 25, 2020
Michael Frank 0
TV, TV Recaps
4

Summary

HBO’s The Outsider jumps back up in intensity and grotesque madness, giving its characters proof that a monster exists.

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4

Summary

HBO’s The Outsider jumps back up in intensity and grotesque madness, giving its characters proof that a monster exists.

This recap of The Outsider Season 1, Episode 8, “Foxhead”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.


After a weak episode last week, The Outsider Episode 8 gets back into the action. Focusing around the next man likely to be targeted by the Grief Eater, Claude Bolton (Paddy Considine), “Foxhead” follows the larger group as they head to Cecil, TN in pursuit of Bolton.

The ex-strip club manager traveled to Cecil to visit his brother, as he “felt like something bad was going to happen.” His brother, Seale, isn’t a great influence though, selling drugs and struggling to manage his anger. To increase Cecil’s odd, townly nature, the heroes go during the annual “Cavestock” celebration.

Ralph Anderson (Ben Mendelsohn), Yunis Sablo (Yul Vasquez), Holly Gibney (Cynthia Erivo), and Andy Katcavage (Derek Cecil) become the group to drive to meet up with Cecil. The goal is to stop El Cuco before it kills once again. Before they leave though, Anderson finds out he won’t get sued by Glory Maitland about the arrest and killing of her husband Terry Maitland. The next few minutes of The Outsider Episode 8 might be the most enjoyable of the entire series, as it switches in-between the different cars driving to Cecil. Anderson and Gibney swap stories and much kinder words than usual, while Sablo messes with Katcavage by making up weird facts about his crush, Gibney. All four characters can be seen laughing during this sequence, most likely the one and only time that this number of players have smiles on their faces.

After getting Bolton intentionally arrested so that they can pick him up, they explain to him all of the scary details of El Cuco, and he confirms he’s been feeling absolutely awful for a few weeks now. Their plan, though simple, is to stay with Bolton until El Cuco kills again so that they can vouch for his whereabouts, and finally get some real proof that this monster continues to survive.

The saddest man in the world of The Outsider, Jack Hoskins (Marc Menchaca), hits his lowest low as he transforms into El Cuco’s killing machine. Though he has an APB out for him, Hoskins still murders someone and then feeds them to the monster. It’s a horrible fate for a troubled guy, and despite his wild unlikability, you still feel like he deserves better. Additionally, he has to stick around while the monster eats, so those horrible sounds will be ringing in his ears for quite some time.

The last thread of “Foxhead” comes in the form of a family attending the festival for their 15th time. The festival itself is creepy and weird, with people wearing animal masks and these parents talking about their nerdy son. The Outsider Episode 8 remains the funniest thus far. The son, fascinated with the caves, wanders off on his own and comes into contact with the Claude Bolton form of El Cuco, the Cuco Claude for short. Cuco Claude lures the boy away from his family and towards one of the caves, only for his sister to notice and stop them from leaving. Cuco Claude gets tackled and his animal mask is ripped off before he runs away from the scene.

Back at the house, the group sleeps in various places through the night, only for the cops to show up in the morning to arrest Claude Bolton for kidnapping the child. As with all of the other cases, there is video evidence of Cuco Claude as its mask was taken off. Finally, after eight episodes, Ralph Anderson and the rest of the group have proof that El Cuco, the Grief Eater, the Outsider exists in their world.

With two episodes remaining, HBO’s horror drama has taken big strides to set up a clash with its difficult-to-find monster. “Foxhead” restores the intensity of previous episodes and features one of the best moments of the show so far, as Gibney explains what the Grief Eater wants from humanity. It wants what all living beings want: to perpetuate its own existence. This idea of immortality remains at the center of the show, as death swirls around each of the characters. The Outsider is at its best when it explores these topics through the eyes of its detectives versus the morphing eyes of its monster.


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