The slow burn to tide you over un­til the fall sea­son

Jo­hAnnA SCh­nelleR whAT i’M wATCh­ing

Metro Canada (Calgary) - - TELEVISION -

Daniel Holden (Aden Young) was 18 when he was sen­tenced to death for mur­der­ing his girl­friend. (He says he’s in­no­cent.) Nine­teen years later, he’s been freed on a tech­ni­cal­ity. Now he’s back home, try­ing to fig­ure out how to live. His re­li­gious sister-in­law Tawney (Ade­laide Cle­mens) in­vites him to a church fes­ti­val. As they wan­der the lawn, she urges him to be bap­tized – cleansed and born anew. “Maybe,” he says. She hugs him. He grips her tightly, then more tightly. She freezes – is this sex­ual? Just as she re­al­izes it’s not, he breaks away. “I’m sorry,” he says. “It’s okay,” she as­sures him. “Ev­ery­one needs to be held.”

“It does some­thing to you, not to be touched in any pos­i­tive way for so long,” he ex­plains. “You be­gin to vac­il­late be­tween be­ing re­pelled by touch and seek­ing it out in any form, even the most neg­a­tive.”

“Maybe just keep try­ing with oth­ers,” she says, kindly.

Those search­ing for a series to tide them over be­tween TV sea­sons should give this a try. But be warned: it’s a slow burn. Daniel was sin­gled out as strange even as a teenager, and his two decades in a win­dow­less white box have not made him less so.

Stick with it, though, and you’ll be re­warded with scenes of un­usual del­i­cacy. Episode two, for ex­am­ple, is a sad med­i­ta­tion on shame and lone­li­ness. Pretty soon you’ll be see­ing the won­ders and weird­ness of the world through Daniel’s eyes – even in the shelves of a Wal-Mart. Jo­hanna Sch­neller is a me­dia con­nois­seur who ze­roes in on pop-cul­ture mo­ments. She ap­pears Mon­day through Thurs­day.

The as­so­ci­ated press

Aden Young in a scene from the drama series Rec­tify. Those search­ing for a series to tide them over be­tween TV sea­sons should give this a try, writes Sch­neller.

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