I am in awe with the cinematography and filming. How in the world did they manage such a whiteness of scenery and snow? And that supply drop scene – breathtaking in its scope, as usual. And the details of real life – down to dirty fingernails to a lighter that wouldn’t go – are amazing. There aren’t any “he’s too clean; it’s such a movie” moments. I cannot wait to see the behind-the-scenes special features.
And the way they showed the horror of war – just as is, no dramatics, no fancy footwork. Take the pile of casualties outside the hospital: The camera watches it as the jeep passes by and then we cut to another scene. It was just there. For a second, but there nonetheless: A fact of life. That, I thought, was a masterful touch. The feeling of no feeling they brought to that aspect balances Roe’s disturbed attitude to it, and in the end, summarizes what the episode – and indeed a lot of the war – is all about.
Potential spoilers ahead!
But again, this was another wonderful episode, this time featuring Medic Eugene Roe. He is such a quiet, pensive, penetrating soul. His story is quiet and conflicted. He doesn’t know how to react to the loss of life around him. He often has this look that doesn’t appear all that approachable, but that is the point I suppose; he doesn’t want feelings to approach him. He is mad when he loses someone, while the nurse he met accepts the sad fate. In the end, the resolution to his story comes when he decides to rip the nurse’s headband – symbolic of his decision to hold off his heart.
But I love how they hinted at Winters being aware of Roe’s troubles, like their emphasis of the look between them as the colonel reads the general’s Christmas speech (the “nuts” one). Touching scenes included the one where Compton tells Guanere his girl has left him. The way Compton tried to laugh it off… Man, I almost cried.
And then Welsh gets hurt. He was such an institution in the story! I hated to see him in pain. And in the end — the way they made you so sorrowful, then happily laughing at Babe’s “Babe” joke – all in the space of a couple seconds. Just one example of the way this show can make you sad and happy all in the same minute. Masterful!
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