Love & Death – Episode 1 “The Huntress” Recap & Review

The Huntress

Episode 1 of Love & Death opens on the fateful day of the incident on June 13th 1980. At the Gore family home, there are blood stains all over the bathroom. A flashback takes the episode to a Sunday service in September 1978 at the Methodist Church of Lucas in Wylie, Texas where the choir sings a hymn before gathering for lunch afterwards.

The members of the choir praise Pat Montgomery for his beautiful singing voice. Pat’s wife, Candace (aka Candy Montgomery) is at the table too. The group discusses the upcoming volleyball match in the church where Allan Gore claims that the entire team needs to buckle up and win against their opponents.

Betty Gore, Allan’s wife, heads home after lunch and the pair make love. Betty is instructing Allan to do it her way because they’re trying to conceive their second child. Allan seems frustrated by the instructions but decides to follow along anyway.

Meanwhile, Pastor Jackie pays Candy a visit telling her that she was going to get a divorce from her husband. Candy helps cheer Jackie up through her insecurities being a Pastor as a single woman.

Betty and Allan are having their share of problems with Betty being stressed about not being able to conceive as easily as she hoped to. The week zooms by and the Sunday following that, news of Jackie’s divorce is broken in church and then the entire congregation regroups for their volleyball match.

Pat and Betty are watching Candy and Allan compete in the same team from the stands. Pat has an awkward interaction with Betty where he congratulates her on the pregnancy even though Betty hadn’t told anyone that she was pregnant. At the same time, Allan accidentally knocks Candy over during the match and helps her up.

Something changes in the air and Candy seems to be taken by Allan all of a sudden. That evening, Candy and Sherry grab drinks and Candy tells the esthetician that Allan smelled like sex to her. Sherry finds it absurd that a man looking like Allan could turn Candy on. Candy states that she wouldn’t mind having an affair with someone like Allan because she could never catch feelings for him because of the way he looked and seemed.

Candy claims that she feels lost in her marriage and adds that it seemed like the right time to make things interesting for her otherwise. Days go by and Candy finds herself thinking about Allan at odd times of the day, be it during movies with her family or during her creative writing class. Candy writes a poem about desiring something.

One night after choir practice, Candy waits in her car to smoke a cigarette. She spots Allan getting into his car parked right beside hers. Candy gets out and stops Allan, asking to chat with him. She gets in his car and admits that she’s infatuated with him and wanted to let him know her feelings.

Allan does not react to this information and the two part ways. Candy tells Sherry about the interaction and how she found Allan’s disinterest in her odd. However, Allan finds himself thinking about Candy a lot more throughout the day. At the Gore family home, Betty gets more and more frustrated by the day leading to more arguments between her and Allan.

On the other hand, Pat and Candy’s marriage also seems to be at a rocky stage. Candy thinks that Pat is disinterested in her, as a result of this. The next day, Allan deliberates about  giving Candy a call from work. After the core council meeting in the church, Candy finds sneaking glances at Allan who is also on the team. After another volleyball match that evening, Sherry, Candy and Allan walk out and Allan asks to talk to Candy.

She invites him in her car and the two chat about the possibility of having an affair. Allan is shocked at the request and thinks about the time that Betty had an affair and how it made him feel. Candy is shocked to learn that Betty had cheated on Allan but the two decide that it is only right for them to think of their spouses and keep themselves clean.

Allan lets slips that Betty was pregnant and that it would be very unfair to her if he cheats on her. Candy apologises for making the request and claims that all she wanted was sex. Allan kisses her on the lips and abruptly leaves the car.

The next day, Candy tells Sherry about the kiss and promises to never bring up the conversation with Allan.

On Halloween night, Allan walks the Montgomery kids back home and runs into Candy and chats briefly with her. The next day, Jackie tells Candy that she was turning her life around and taking up a job that was offered to her. She claims that the church will have a new, younger pastor who will motivate younger couples to be a part of the congregation.

Candy is heartbroken about losing her friend but is shocked when Allan calls her, asking to meet for lunch. Jackie learns that Candy was planning on having an affair because her life as a homemaker feels empty and lacks any reward for her to be a better wife and mother. Jackie tries to convince her friend against doing something like this after her marriage broke because of similar reasons. However, the pastor learns that Candy had made up her mind and was going to have an affair with someone.

The next day, Allan and Candy grab lunch and chat about their potential affair. They decide that it’ll be a good idea to think over their decision before taking the step. Over the course of the next few weeks, both Allan and Candy make up their lists of pros and cons, for and against hooking up outside of their respective marriages.

Allan and Candy meet over at the Montgomery house and decide their set of rules for the affair, where they prioritise ending things as soon as one of them starts wanting more than just sex. They two decide to meet up in a motel outside town on December 12th 1978, to hook up for the first time.

Before the affair starts, Candy tries to get cosy with Pat but it seems like the man cannot catch any of her signals.

Candy grooms herself before the hookup and picks a motel outside town for her and Allan’s first hookup. She is reluctant but dresses herself in a night gown and gives Allan a call asking him to come to the motel. Allan tries to calm his own nerves before making it to the motel room. However, once he arrives, they chat over lunch.

Allan admits that he would love to read something Candy had written as part of her class. Candy recalls how Pat had lied about reading her short story and compares her husband with Allan. The two make out and eventually hook up in the hotel room for the first time. Candy is shocked by how good the sex is and rushes to have a shower to avoid smelling like Allan as the episode comes to an end.

The Episode Review

This episode eases viewers into the minds of Candy and Allan as they cheat on their respective spouses for the first time. It is known that this affair between Candy and Allan will only get more intense with time which will lead Candy to do what she did.

As much as I love Elizabeth Olsen as an actress, I feel like even her amazing acting skills aren’t enough to save the show. This case was recently made into another five-part TV show starring Jessica Biel as recently as May 2022, which is why there is so much less press around Love & Death because viewers have seen this story before and this one does not offer much excitement.

However, the performances in this episode are worth a watch which is a promise for the episodes to come. With three of seven episodes out already and the remaining four dropping in the next four weeks, we will learn more about what went down in the Gore house on that awful afternoon of June 13th 1980.

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You can read our full season review for Love & Death here!

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