Episode 4 reigns in on trauma and loss deeply as the series delves into Dani’s past that explains plenty about her present.
This recap of Netflix’s The Haunting of Bly Manor episode 4, “The Way It Came” contains significant spoilers.
We recapped the whole series — check out the archive.
Episode 4 begins with the context of Dani’s love life from a childhood sweetheart until an engagement party — the man is called Edmund. At the party, Edmund’s mother gives her a dress from her wedding. Dani does not look right in terms of body language in these scenes. It’s evident she’s feeling a hole in her life — audiences will understand what haunts her after this chapter.
The awkward relationship between Dani and Jamie continues
In the present day, Jamie tells Dani that the funeral is nearly ready — it’s for Owen’s mother. She doesn’t want to go to the funeral so Jamie tells her not to go. She tells Jamie to pull her dress zipper down. As she zips down, Dani sees the man in the mirror again and freaks out. Dani talks to Flora about death and how her parents will always be here. She tells Dani that her parents are “really not here” but that they can pretend. In the church, Hannah Grose is also not going to the funeral.
The way Flora says “really not here” was likely to be literal considering the character can see ghosts. Also, it’s very strange that Hannah is not going to the funeral either.
Dani’s experiences are getting more frequent
The Haunting of Bly Manor episode 4 is making Dani’s experiences stronger — the longer the character stays at the manor, the more intense the hauntings appear to be. It’s a predictable theme but its directed with a tone — it poses well and is paced greatly so far.
Jamie returns from the funeral. Dani and Hannah are making food with the children. Jamie talks about how Owen must be relieved that his mother isn’t suffering anymore. A tinge of disagreement comes from Hannah — it’s like Hannah is bothered by how people talk about Owen. Dani continues to see the male figure wherever she goes — it seems to be getting more frequent and she leaves the kitchen. She also sees Peter Quint but it was actually Owen and she nearly attacks him.
Flora’s theory on death
For a young child, Flora seems to have misplaced wisdom that is often eery in the context of the series and episode 4 shows Flora’s view on life almost sound adultlike.
A flashback ensues and Dani is trying on her wedding dress. She still doesn’t look confident and sure about herself. The woman helping her put on her dress is a bit touchy with her hands. In the present day, the adults and children enjoy a meal. Flora tells Owen that he isn’t dying — she says she was really, really sad when her parents died: “Dead doesn’t mean gone, so you don’t need to be sad”. Miles suddenly wants a glass of wine and smashes his hand on the table. Dani sends both children to bed.
Dani tries to relate with Miles
While the children get ready, Dani looks at the dollhouse and checks out all of the figures. Flora tells Dani not to move things around her dollhouse — she sees that Dani is holding the doll that resembles Peter. Dani asks Flora if she’s seen Peter — Flora says she doesn’t let him in the house and then looks over Dani’s shoulder. Dani asks her why she always looks over her shoulder but she says she doesn’t.
We’d all have impatience in this scene and probably repeat the question to Flora — she clearly looked over Dani’s shoulder.
Dani speaks to Miles and says they are alike — she explains how her father died at a young age and her mother wasn’t there a lot. She tells Miles he has some great grown-ups in his life if he wants to have them. Dani heads downstairs and Jamie invites her to a campfire with the other adults.
Dani is trying to embed herself in the children’s life, realizing that being that au pair was not as swimming as she’d expect.
At the campfire, episode 4 shows another flashback. Edmund tells Dani that the wedding has been pressure but that’s she’s been great with it. Dani tells him that she wants to tone down the wedding a little rather than make it “big”. She also implies she doesn’t want the wedding at all. She explains she didn’t want to hurt him or the family. Dani claims she still loves him but not in the way she wanted — that void you notice at the start of the chapter spills out here. Upset and hurt, Edmund gets out of the car and he’s immediately run over — the shine from the lorry reflects in his eyes as he’s crushed; she notices the blood on his hands. That’s who she’s seeing in the mirror — she’s seeing Edmund just before he is hit by a vehicle.
This is Dani’s trauma and has become a significant theme in the first four chapters — it’s the most tragic event someone can experience from a hurtful breakup; no closure and zero ways of fixing it apart from allowing it to circle in your head.
Remembering those who are gone
A big theme in The Haunting of Bly Manor is loss and the characters all have someone in their life that is no longer present and stays on their mind. There’s a strong story here that not letting go is the cause of hauntings, which in itself is not a new theory, but it’s well displayed in this story.
Back to the present; Jamie asks if anyone has got anything to say around the campfire — Hannah talks about Rebecca and how brilliant and beautiful she was and that she was punished for it. Jamie talks about Lord and Lady Wingrave — how they were good people and how their children miss them — she then praises Dani and how good she’s been for the children. Dani doesn’t want to talk about anyone. Owen then talks about his mother — how she loved him and she was “gone” long before she died.
With all the talk about those who are gone from their lives, Dani has another flashback; she’s at the hospital and the doctor delivers the bad news. She hyperventilates and heads to the bathroom sobbing — this is where she first saw Edmund in the mirror with his glasses completely lit up. At the funeral, she keeps seeing him. She covers a mirror in front of everyone while sobbing.
Episode 4 triggers the start of a potential new relationship — the manor seems to produce many of these but we are sure audiences will enjoy the prospect of these two characters enjoying each other’s company.
In the present, Dani walks to the greenhouse with Jamie and they sit and drink; Dani tells Jamie she sees things that are not there. She tells her about her fiance and how she sees him — “I’ve never told anybody that”. Dani explains how they’d broken up right before it happened. Jamie asks if he is here now and jokingly says she will protect her. Dani kisses Jamie and then she sees Edmund and freaks out. Jamie seems offended and walks off. The narrator states that Dani had been waiting for the right night to “move on” for a long time.
As viewers get closer to the end of episode 4, it appears that Flora and Miles are more in tune with each other than we believed.
In a flashback, Edmund’s mother gives Dani Edmund’s glasses that were at the hospital. She tells her that she’s still part of the family. In the present, Jamie leaves with Owen. Dani heads back to her bed and takes Edmund’s glasses. Flora looks at her dollhouse and alerts Miles as she’s worried about Dani. The children speak to Dani downstairs and say they are frightened. Flora tells a story as a figure walks slowly past Dani who is unaware of what’s happening — she’s trying to distract her until the figure is gone. Dani goes to get Flora a glass of milk while Miles checks that the ghostly figure has gone.
Dani puts Flora to bed and heads back to the campfire. She throws the glasses into the fire. Edmund stands near her — she says “It’s just me and you then”. It’s almost like she’s exhausted from seeing him.
The Haunting of Bly Manor episode 4 reigns in on trauma and loss deeply as the series delves into Dani’s past that explains plenty about her present.