With no Vic this week, episode 2 of Nos4a2 Season 2 takes a slightly different approach by letting Charlie Manx take centre stage. With a split focus between the past and present, the episode does well to add some more humanity for our antagonist while letting Zachary Quinto shine in his role.
With a series of flashbacks we see Manx’s past, including his love with partner Cassie blossom over time. She reveals she’s pregnant and he convinces her this is a good thing. From here, we skip forward and see he’s named his daughter Millie but Manx continues to be shunned by his father-in-law, who scoffs at the notion of him living off their family like a vampire.
Unfortunately things go awry in his relationship with Cassie too following the death of her Father. With Manx struggling for work and the house a mess, midway through their argument Millie arrives. Millie, as it turns out, is the same girl we saw in Christmastown last episode.
Desperate to make a name for himself, Manx makes a huge investment and pawns his mother-in-law’s rings to buy a wraith. Despite his intent of doing the right thing, his relationship with Cassie falls apart in the process and she leaves with Millie.
Before she goes however, Manx offers to drive her to her sister’s. Unfortunately this paves way for him to become the Manx we’ve come to know as he takes her up to Christmasland.
At Jefferson Memorial Hospital, a security guard arrives in the morgue unaware that Manx is alive. As our foe steps off the table, the security guard is unfortunately killed in the ensuing conflict.
Charlie Manx phones Bing and tasks him with putting a child in the wraith. In doing so, it’ll start automatically and help heal him. After hanging the phone up, he shuffles down to the parking lot and drives off to the meeting spot, ringing Millie in Christmasland and promising her the lights won’t go out there again.
Thanks to Bing putting a child inside the Wraith, Charlie Manx ends up young again but thanks to some continued bleeding, he’s still not 100%. Down and out, Bing arrives and helps him up into the wraith where the unaware little boy sits in the back.
Immediately the bleeding subsides and the boy starts to turn as they drive up to Christmasland. Millie however, is not happy that Manx isn’t staying around given his intention of “helping” other boys and girls.
After meeting Bing in the graveyard just outside Christmasland, they look upon the gravestone of Bruce McQueen and decide he looks just like his Mother, which is where the episode ends.
The Review Write-Up
While the episode doesn’t do an awful lot to progress the main narrative of the series, it does help to flesh out Charlie Manx a lot more and give some much needed characterisation and empathy for this villain. Beyond that though, there isn’t an awful lot else going on here.
Having said that, it looks like Millie may play a big part in the conflict to come and I’d imagine she’s probably going to be the wildcard of the season. Could we see her turn on her father and team up with Vic to take him down?
We’ll have to wait and see of course but for now, Nos4a2 bows out with another enjoyable episode that leaves the door wide open for next week.