All through season #1 of The Leftovers Justin Theroux was rocking a ten-day beard, which is usually an indication of hip existential lethargy or in some cases serious depression. In the second season he’s clean-shaven. The indication is that his character, a small-town cop named Kevin Garvey, feels less gloomy about the big cataclysmic disappearance. That or Theroux (who married Jennifer Aniston last night) is declaring that the beard-stubble hipster thing is definitely over. (Ten months after The Spectator‘s Harry Mount said the same thing. Was Theroux’s despairing beardo look in season #1 the final death blow?) Season #2 kicks off on 10.4.15; a season #1 Bluray package will pop two days later.
The Leftovers “is about cosmic malevolence and the utter absence of wonder,” I wrote last August. “A cosmic event of extraordinary significance has occured three years before the series begins, and in the wake of the disappearance of 2% of the world’s population, it seem as if everyone in The Leftovers is saying ‘Wow, we didn’t get chosen…that’s fucked up…this feels bad…I guess we’re all spiritually deficient on some level…shit.’
“And yet no one is saying ‘Wow, the religious wackos were right all along! There is a God and a scheme of some kind…what a mindblower! Bill Maher and Woody Allen and all the great existential philosophers were wrong all along, and…well, even if some of us don’t wind up in paradise, at least we know for the first time in the history of humanity that there really is a plan and a scheme and some kind of order to things. The term intelligent design is no longer a right-wing slogan. It’s obviously real and serious as a heart attack.’
“And yet the scheme is not particularly intelligent. It’s arbitrary and random as fuck. There’s no special moral glow or distinction shared by the departed. They’re just gone. A woman of Indian descent who smokes cigarettes and is having a fast fuck in a motel room with Theroux…she gets taken along with Vladimir Putin, Gary Busey, Jennifer Lopez and the Pope? Along with Carrie Coon‘s husband and two kids? And an unborn fetus in the womb of Amy Brenneman? What the hell for? If anything the design is malevolent and perverse. Nothing calculates or balances. Damon Lindelof is a cheap bag of tricks.”