The word of the moment is “duende.”
It’s All About Finding Your Duende
Lodge 49 is all about duende. Passion and soul. That feeling you get when you are really enamored with an idea or someone. Most of the characters were either finding it or losing it.
In the case of Connie, she has lost her passion. She is fumbling around trying to find her purpose again since losing her job as a reporter. This is also causing her to question decisions that she has made. Her husband Scott knows that something is going on with her.
While he loves her unconditionally, he is willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for her by giving her what she needs. Her happiness is his duende and her duende is Ernie. That is why Scott requests that Ernie start sleeping with her again.
The Man, the Myth, the Legend
For as mythical as Captain was made out to be he is just a man named Gary Green. There is nothing special about him. In fact, he might be a little less sure of himself than the successful, outward image he presents. He is of questionable moral standards but is it because he lacks ethics or he chooses to forget them? We may never know.
In a brilliant bit of storytelling, at the beginning of the show we see the circumstances that have created the shadowy figure that he is today. He is elusive only because he is wanted by lawyers. When it comes time for him to sign his divorce papers, he hesitates before crumbling them up and eating them much to Brenda, his soon-to-be ex’s chagrin. But by the look on her face, she is used to this sort of behavior.
From there it just gets worse for him. He is on a downward spiral full of booze and more booze while hanging out in a wading pool in one of his shady development properties. It is almost Shakespearean in scope. The King and the crumbling kingdom.
Finding Your Mojo
Ernie hasn’t felt his duende in a long time. When Connie is in his life, everything seems centered and promising. The minute they break up, he is fumbling to find his footing. Aware that the clock keeps ticking and he isn’t getting any younger, he worries about his future security.
Getting Captain was his retirement plan. Hooking him into buying toilet and plumbing supplies for his properties was the goal of a lifetime and now Ernie finds himself at the “center of the maze.” Gary is a bit of a challenge and what is known as a hard sell.
However, after subjecting himself to “wining and dining,” a crazy cock fight and a night with “Goat People,” he finally lands the account of his dreams only to have it crumble when he finds out that Gary is a fraud. Although not all is lost when Captain includes him and Dud in what could be a lucrative land deal.
Liz has been searching for her duende. She thought she found it once and when she assumed her father’s debt unknowingly and unwillingly, she let it slip away. Her relationship with Corporate and now her sense of inclusion in the wacky world of business that she has been led to may prove to save her and ignite the passion in her cynical heart again.
Perhaps out of everyone on the show, Dud and Blaise have the most duende. Dud is all about the lodge and restoring it to its former glory. Blaise is a believer in alchemy and seeking the truth. They are also two of the happiest characters in the series.
Lodge 49 – The Verdict
All of the principle actors were at the top of their game. Week in and week out, this cast shines individually and as an ensemble. What is sometimes hard to portray as an actor is vulnerability. That is not a problem for anyone on Lodge 49.
Bruce Campbell who is best known for his role as Ash Williams in the Evil Dead series is showing that he is a versatile performer. He is doing some superlative work as Gary Green. For his fans that feel the need to pigeonhole him, good luck. This actor has some chops and yes, it is hard to believe that he doesn’t need a chainsaw!
I am a little sad to note that there are only two episodes left in this marvelous series. A testament to the hard work of the cast members is the fact that they feel like friends. These are people you want to spend time with and are invested in their well-being. That is why I hope when season 1 ends, AMC leaves the lights on and the doors unlocked.
Lodge 49 airs Mondays at 10 PM on AMC.