Warning: Contains Spoilers!
‘I have taken your jools! LMAO!!!!’
Aufwader’s Thoughts: Barry and Martin both have redeeming moments in this chapter, only for those glimpses of kindness to be quickly blotted out by the overwhelming horror of the situation that they’re in. What makes the business with Dancing Jacks hit so hard is that it’s one more awful thing on top of an already huge pile of awful things. Each of Barry and Martin’s problems would be bad enough individually, but all the terribleness sort of comes at them at once, and in light of the week they’ve already had, it’s no wonder neither of them has the capacity to understand a supernatural threat as well. Maybe on a good day, they might’ve banded together against the evil of Austerly Fellows, but this is far from a good day, and they’re just regular people, not .
For me, the saddest part about Paul wrecking Martin’s memorabilia collection is that it’s proof of how drastically Dancing Jacks has changed Paul, separating him from what should be the most important and positive part of his childhood – his family. He and Martin were close, as we saw, and Dancing Jacks has now robbed them of the bond that they shared. It’s not just that they’ll never build and paint their TARDIS together, it’s that they’ve been denied the chance to create memories as a family.
Still, there’s hope as long as the ‘aberrants’ resist.
Matt’s Thoughts: Another chapter that’s firing on all cylinders.
Barry emerges as a character who deeply cares about the children in his school, despite his political incorrectness. We now feel sorry that his days at the school are over.
Martin thinks he’s discovered a plausible real-world explanation of drugs with the discovery of the minchet jars, which gives him a flicker of hope. But clearly however that particularly noxious plant works, it’s not like any sort of narcotic we know anywhere else. I also feel that he comes into his own in this chapter. The destruction of his man-cave could have tipped him into a spiral of anger and hatred, but instead his good side comes out. But is it too late?
Finally, Emma heads out – into the moment we’ve all been waiting for.