Channel Zero: Candle Cove, after easing back off the creepy factor last week, cranked things right back up with “A Strange Vessel.” Nothing is quite so disturbing and unsettling as kids acting oddly while wearing paper mache masks This episode sees another death of one of the original kids from 1988.
Evidently being a grownup does not save anyone from the pirates of Candle Cove.
Mike is still trying to find out how Lily got to Iron Hill. His wife drops everything to come and pick up their daughter. Jessica visits her husband Gary who is behind bars because of his actions last week.
He tells Jessica to keep his gun with her. Flashbacks reveal that Jessica and Mike were very close when they were kids. The memories also show that Eddie was jealous of Jessica.
Jessica brings some clothes for Lily who tells the two adults that she likes pirates. Mike’s daughter tells him that she is actually Eddie. Mike asks Eddie where Lily is and the child replies that she is dreaming.
The four kids caught stabbing the science dummy are playing “Candle Cove” while wearing paper mache masks of the characters in the show. Mike and “Eddie” play cards and a faceless figure in a pirate’s hat appears behind Mike. He picks up his daughter and they go outside to play cards.
Amy goes to speak with the four children who were stabbing the dummy last week. They are all in Mrs. Booth’s class.
Marla and Jessica watch Mike and Lily play cards outside. Jessica says to Mike’s mother, “You know it’s not really him don’t you?” Meaning that Eddie is not really possessing Lily’s body. Marla answers, “Of course not,” but when she looks out the window she sees Eddie and Mike playing cards.
Mike asks Eddie why he is back and about the show Candle Cove. Eddie replies that he remembers what Mike did. He then explains that he understands why Mike had to do it. He then tells his brother that he is trapped. Eddie also tells Mike how to set him free.
Jessica does not believe Mike’s explanation but she agrees to help him. Amy goes to the classroom to see the children and Mrs. Booth says she sent them to the principal’s office.
In a flashback, we learn that Eddie was going to send Jessica to Candle Cove. Mike stops her and confronts his twin. He tells Eddie that he is killing the kids and not sending them anywhere.
Eddie is angry that his twin will not support him. The twins fight and Mike twists Eddie’s broken finger to gain control of the hook.
Mrs. Booth tells Amy that her son Jacob, one of the murdered kids back in 1988, was very good friends with Eddie. In another flashback we learn that the teacher could also see Candle Cove as she encourages Eddie and Jacob to watch the program.
Amy finds the four children in the school auditorium rehearsing in paper mache masks. The masks are of the characters in Candle Cove. She learns that Mrs. Booth lied to her and she send the kids home.
Jessica agrees to help Mike sort Eddie out and Amy gets a Chinese takeaway. As she drives off the four children from Mrs. Booth’s class are seen crossing the street.
Mike and Jessica take Eddie’s body out and burn it. Marla visits with Eddie and then reads “Treasure Island” to the child.
Jessica goes home and Amy has had sex with the deputy who asked her out earlier. The new “temporary” sheriff has a hunch and leaves the deputy in her bed. She goes to check something out.
Amy goes to Mrs. Booth’s house and the teacher is apparently out. The cop goes in and finds Daphne’s dead body in the basement. Booth’s cat is licking the gaping wound in the corpse’s neck.
Jessica goes home and is attacked by the four kids in paper mache masks. She tries to run but is caught outside and stabbed to death in the wading pool.
Lily wakes up and Eddie is gone. The girl has no idea where she is or how she got there.
Channel Zero: Candle Cove revealed a lot this week about the main characters. Mrs. Booth was obviously putting on the pirate show as Amy found the Jaw Bone puppet in the basement. This makes the elderly teacher a sort of Pied Piper who influenced Eddie back in 1988 and is now influencing a new crop of kids.
She is doing the same thing with a new generation of children in Iron Hill. There was no Tooth-Child in this episode but that faceless horror in Lily’s bedroom was bad enough.
It seems fairly clear that Booth is carrying out some sort of vendetta against the kids from 1988. Tim, Daphne and now Jessica are all dead, although Tim was, more or less, accidentally killed. The teacher is also targeting the older generation’s children.
Kudos to the writers and director of this episode. The show’s creator Nick Antosca and Erica Saleh wrote this one and director Craig William Macneill masterfully put everything together. It seemed a near certainty that Amy was going to be sliced and diced by Mrs. Booth’s possessed children.
Unfortunately, the one normal person in all of Iron Hill, Jessica Yolen, dies horribly at the small hands of the paper mache masked children.
The show’s creator knows just how frightening creepy, and homicidal, kids are. Anyone who does not “get this” should watch the 2008 Brit film The Children. Watching that horror movie will change the way the viewer looks at curly headed moppets forever.
As Mrs. Booth is clearly the real connection between the deaths in 1988, Eddie is, after all, dead, she must be the one really responsible for everything. The only question now is whether or not Mike can put the pieces together quickly enough to save himself.
Channel Zero: Candle Cove airs Tuesdays on SyFy. A word to the wise, watch this unsettling program with all the lights on and with a friend; preferably one you can trust. And avoid paper mache masks.
- Paul Schneider – Mike Painter
- Fiona Shaw – Marla Painter
- Shaun Benson – Gary Yolen
- Natalie Brown – Jessica Yolen
- Luisa D’Oliveira – Amy Welch
- Luca Villacis – young Mike/Eddie Painter
- Cassandra Consiglio – The Tooth Child
- Marina Stephenson Kerr – Mrs. Booth
- David Brown – Tim Hazel
- Gwendolyn Collins – Daphne Bell
- Abigail Pniowsky – Lily Painter