THE ARTIST | Shawn Hatosy
THE SHOW | Animal Kingdom
THE EPISODE | “Family Business” (Aug. 8, 2021)
THE PERFORMANCE | There are very few instances where we’ve written a summary or review and got choked up. In those moments, we’re generally so focused on taking notes that it’s hard to get wiped out completely. But the work Hatosy did in Sunday’s Animal Kingdom was so visceral and heartbreaking, we couldn’t help but collapse.
All in all, it was a superlative hour for the actor. First, he went from Pope’s shock upon learning of the death of Angela, with whom he would always associate his late sister Julia, to his confusion when, after many years, he came face to face with Pam, who is in his childhood a better mother to him than Smurf. Then Hatosy imbued his character with the ruthlessness of a bullet fired as he chased the blow he thought might have saved Angela, but he realized that his anger stemmed equally from Smurf’s indifference to Julia.
But where Hatosy real Got Us was in his last scene, when Pope confessed to brother Deran why he had to leave. At first, he was his usual, reticent self—an arm’s length pressure cooker. As Deran insisted, Pope revealed what was tearing him beneath the surface, Hatosy gradually knocked down the wall protecting his alter ego from being really seen. “I’m looking for ghosts,” he said incredulously. ‘I hear voices. I’m listening smurfs voice in my head.
‘Everywhere I look,’ he went on, fear catching up with his tone, ‘I see her… everywhere!”
It was a beautiful piece of work, as raw as a bruise too soft to touch. After seeing it – repeatedly – we couldn’t have denied Hatosy the Artist of the Week award any more than we could have prevented our eyes from welling up.
FAIR MENTION | DaveThe energetic hype man GaTa is always busy, and that bustle paid off in the Season 2 finale when he finally got his flowers…and delivered a triumphant performance, too. Dave worried that GaTa’s bipolar disorder — described so poignantly in a Season 1 episode — was starting again, and the two had an intense screaming match over their clashing ambitions. But then GaTa dropped the “cool dude” act and got real, lashing out at his friend for not offering to do a song with him and revealing the pain buried beneath his loud bravado. We also saw all that passion and drive of his come out as he burst into tears backstage at the VMAs before joining Dave for a climactic, game-changing performance. GaTa has always been the epitome of the “fake it ’till you make it” philosophy – and this week it finally made it.
FAIR MENTION | It’s only fitting that Bellamy Young’s character came about Fantasy Island in Tuesday’s series premiere with the intention of eating as much as possible, as she chewed—yes, devoured—every last bit of scenery in the process. Her performance as Christine Collins, an image-obsessed newscaster at her wits’ end, gave us great satisfaction and set the bar extremely high for all future visitors to the island. It was a particularly insane story, but as always, Young fully understood the brief, shifting effortlessly between comedy and drama, faster than Christine could make her way through a pork roast. In a word it was delicious.
Which performance(s) has blown your socks off this week? Tell us in Comments!