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  • The Feminist Times

Review: Mare of Easttown

HBO’s newly released 7-part crime series, starring Kate Winslet, Mare of

Easttown has garnered itself a lot of positive reviews. While Wikipedia describes

it as “Mare Sheehan, an office police investigator in a small Pennsylvania town,

investigates a brutal murder as she tries to keep her life from falling apart” it

definitely offers the viewer more than just a crime thriller. Based in the town of

Easttown, where everyone knows everyone.

Mare Sheehan (Kate Winslet), a detective sergeant in the town of Easttown, who

is bestowed with the title of “Lady Hawk” by the people of the town for her

performance in a basketball game years ago. Mare does not come across as a

pleasing character in the initial part of the 1st episode but as the show progresses,

it also explains the reason for Mare's behaviour, her ex-husband is engaged to

another women, a news everyone in the town except her was aware of and she

also lost her son to suicide. Mare uses her job as an excuse to not address and

grieve her son's suicide and has a strained relationship with her daughter. Coming

to the plot, just when the drama convinces the viewer that Easttown just

witnesses small crimes, the bigger plot is introduced, the case of a missing girl,

Katie Bailey, who has been missing for a year, Mare feels the case to be hopeless

as Katie had a history of drugs and prostitution, Mare faces backlash for not

doing enough and as the drama proceeds, Mare receives a call only to find out

about the body of a teenage girl in the woods, Erin, a single mother. The direct

suspects for her death being, Dylan, the father of her child and his girlfriend, who

had in fact had a rather unpleasant meet with Erin on the night of her death. It is

here when the drama takes a turn and gets the viewer on the edge of their seats

with unpredicted twists and storyline, new and probable culprits are introduced.

Later, Mare is made to collaborate with another detective, Colin Zabel (Evan

Peters), a county detective.

The plot does not just stick to its crime storyline but also gives a glimpse into the

convoluted human relationships, Mare is a mother, a grandmother, a daughter

and is divorced. While she is fighting a custody battle for her grandson from her

late son’s ex-girlfriend and her conversations with her mother add a different

element to the show. Apart from this, the series also talks about human emotions,

most importantly grief. How it is isn’t addressed properly, it is then we witness

that Mare hasn’t quite addressed her son’s loss by suicide. It also shares with us

the impact suicide has on the family.

Mare of Easttown is an amalgam of various elements beautifully put together in

this crime series, which helps in not making this show a cliché crime thriller.

While the 1st episode is a bit slow as it lays foundations to its many stories but as

it picks up the pace from the 2nd episode, it will have you hooked. Many viewers

and critics have compared the series with crime shows like True Detective but

Mare of Easttown is definitely one of a kind with a brilliant performance by Kate

Winslet and a story line that keeps you glued to the screen. This crime series for

sure deserves a spot in your watchlist, streaming now on Disney+ Hotstar.

- Aadya Punj

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