The Leftovers. The post-rapture

The Leftovers is an American drama series produced by Warner Bros for HBO. It is currently in its second series, having premiered originally on June 29th, 2014 and being renewed for a second series which started on October 4th, 2015. The show follows the lives of the Garvey family, people who are left behind after the rapture occurs. The show stars Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman, Christopher Eccleston, Liv Tyler, Chris Zylka, Margaret Qualley, Carrie Coon and Emily Meade. The show has received a generally positive critical reception.

This article will give an overview of the plot of The Leftovers so far, as well as give an overview of the main cast and the production of the show. We will also give commentary about the critical reception of the show thus far.

Plot

The show The Leftovers explores the idea of a life after what the show calls “The Sudden Departure” – a twist on the Rapture from Christian theology. In the show, the characters are literally “Leftovers,” people who didn’t ascend during the Rapture.

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The Sudden Departure is not universally recognized as the Christian rapture – instead, it is named for the mysterious and unexplained disappearance of two percent of the world’s population – over one hundred and forty million people.

 

The show concentrates on a single family who were left behind – the Garvey’s. They reside in a fictional town in New York called Mapleton. The patriarch is called Kevin Garvey, and he is a police chief. His wife is a cult member that believes in the rapture theory, assuming that the rapture left them behind due to their sinful lives. The son of the family is a college student, and the daughter is a rebellious teenager.

The second series moves from New York to a town outside of Austin Texas.

Cast

Justin Theroux plays the role of Kevin Garvey. Kevin is the police chief of the fictional town of Mapleton.

Amy Brenneman plays the role of his wife, Laurie Garvey. Laurie has joined a cult – the Guilty Left Behind, who believe that sin is the reason they haven’t disappeared.

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Christopher Eccelston plays the role of Matt Jamison, a one-time reverend, now an editor of a sinner-shaming tabloid. His character is conflicted as he led a pious and Christian life, and yet he was left behind during the Sudden Departure.

Liv Tyler plays the role of Megan Abbott. Megan is a woman preparing to get married.

Chris Zylka is in the main cast playing Tommy Garvey, the son of Laurie and Justin.

Margaret Qualley plays the rebellious teenager Jill Garvey, in the role of Justin and Laurie’s daughter, as well as Tommy’s sister.

Carrie Coon plays the role of Nora Durst.

Emily Meade is cast in the role of Aimee.

Amanda Warren plays Lucy Warburton.

Ann Dowd was cast in the role of Patti Levin.

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Michael Gaston is the actor for the role of Dean. Dean is a person who has adapted to the change in the world by acting out with violent impulses. Gaston is best known for his work on Sudden Death, Ransom, Cop Land, Thirteen Days, The Crucible, Double Jeopardy, High Crimes, Sugar and Body of Lies and Bless the Child.

Max Carver and Charlie Carver play the two identical twins, Adam and Scott Frost.

Annie Q is on the cast, playing Christine – a groupie of Holy Wayne.

Janel Moloney plays the wife of Matt Jamison, Mary Jamison.

Regina King plays the role of a doctor called Erika Murphy.

Jevin Carrolll is cast in the role of John Murphy.

Jovan Adepo also appears, in the role of Michael Murphy.

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The recurring cast also consists of Paterson Joseph playing the role of Henry “Holy Wayne” Gilchrest, Frank Harts plays the role of police officer Dennis Luckey, Scott Glenn plays Kevin Garvey Sr, and Marceline Hugot and Jasmin Savoy Brown play Gladys and Evie Murphy respectively.

 

Production

HBO own the rights to the show having acquired them prior to the release of the book on which the series is based. This occurred in 2012.

The pilot was commissioned in February 2013. The HBO executives decided to commission a full series of ten episodes which would comprise the entirety of the novel. The second series was commissioned and started airing in October of 2015. The first series aired from June 29th 2014.

The opening theme is currently performed by DeMent, the music being titled “Let the Mystery Be.”

The composer of the score of the show is Max Richter.

Damon Lindelof, tom Perrotta, Peter Berg, Sarah Aubrey, Mimi Leder and Tom Spezialy are the executive produces for the show, with Nan Bernstein Freed being labelled as producer.

The show was shot on location in New York for the first series, and the second series was based and shot in Austin, Texas. Todd McMullen has handled cinematography.

Each episode is fifty-one to fifty-eight minutes long, aside from the pilot, which has a run time of seventy two minutes.

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The production companies are Warner Brothers Television, Film 44 and White Rabbit Prooductions – making it the first HBO show to be outsourced for production as opposed to being created by HBO’s in house production team. Warner Brothers also handle the distribution of the show domestically and internationally through their distribution company, Warner Bros Television Distribution.

 

Reception

The Show The Leftovers received mixed but mostly positive reviews from critics. Metacritic, the review aggregator, shows an aggregated score of 65/100 for the first season, whilst the second season garnered a rating of eighty out of a hundred. On Rotten Tomatoes, a fellow aggregator, the show holds a rating of 70% for season one, with 88% being the rating for the second season.

One critic wrote of the show, “It’s a show that wants to provoke a reaction in you, whether it’s admiration, hatred, or just bafflement. It’s HBO’s best drama–and thus must-see TV.”

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The show has received numerous accolades, including a Critics’ choice award and several nominations from both the Satellite Awards and the Critics’ Choice Television Awards.

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