Jump to content
Forums forums

Slovenly Muse

  • Content Count

  • Joined

Community Reputation

2.7k Excellent

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
  1. Slovenly Muse

    At Home With Amy Sedaris

    Yay, Ann Dowd! Always so great to see her, even though her role on The Handmaid's Tale has been branded so indelibly in my mind that when she pops up in other places, it always seems somehow menacing... Fortunately, that doesn't override my happiness that she's there! Some good stuff going on in this episode. I agree with the poster upthread who said this season hasn't been quite as strong as the first. There have been enough solid episodes to keep me on board, but I'm a bit disappointed to see the show leaning in to some of the things I liked least about the first season. I know it's just a matter of preference, not quality, but I'm never really a fan of using cruelty as a source of humour. It just never makes me laugh. I think Amy is at her best when she is good-natured, but out of her depth dealing with the absurdity of the wacky characters around her (Like when she's trying desperately to carry on a cheerful, pleasant conversation with the knife guy, and his every response just gets darker and creepier), rather than when she's unfairly berating her underlings or acting nastily egotistical. I'm disappointed to see that Amy's mean streak is getting a bit more play this season - it really kills the comedy for me, and it makes it hard to figure out how we're supposed to feel about Amy as a character. Chassie Tucker's been off this season, too. I simply don't see the humour in having her come in, act openly resentful or hostile about being there, and then leave. What's the joke? I'm glad, though, to see her getting a bit more to do these past few episodes, which will hopefully help to give her character some more clearly defined sense of purpose. (By the way, am I overthinking things, or is her name a joke on the fact that her character is played by a man? Given that a "chassis" is a sort of undercarriage or foundational structure of a vehicle, does this mean that Chassie Tucker is someone who... tucks? Her... undercarriage?)
  2. Slovenly Muse

    Leaving Neverland

    Wow. I just watched that Living with Michael Jackson documentary, and holy hell. Not that I didn't already 100% believe the accusations, but his comments on children were really quite damning. And the way he and Gavin were leaning on each other and holding hands in that interview... it was really chilling. What's more, and I almost can't BELIEVE this hasn't been brought up previously in this thread, but in that documentary, he denied anything inappropriate happening with children in EXACTLY the same awkward, emphatic, mounting hyperbole way of speaking that he used IN THE SAME INTERVIEW to deny that he'd had ANY cosmetic surgery or other work done to change his appearance (apart from his nose so he could breathe more easily while singing), and that his change of skin colour and entire facial structure had been the result of... puberty. In his 20s. (But he hadn't really changed that much, that's just "ignorance." 🙄) How could anyone find his word on ANYTHING credible after that? It was actually eerily reminiscent of listening to Trump talk about his crowd size. Dude, we can see it with our eyes. I was a young teenager when all this went down with MJ, and I wasn't familiar with the case or really with his music, but I do remember feeling profoundly affected when he died. His was the only celebrity death that really hit me, and I barely knew anything about him. The problem was, I think the public didn't quite believe he was innocent of the molestation charges, and couldn't quite embrace him fully... but also didn't quite believe he was guilty, and couldn't really condemn him. So the world was living in this weird grey area, where the only thing we could figure to do was to ridicule him for his appearance and turn him into a figure of public mockery. Nowadays, we tend to be a bit more sensitive to body dysmorphia than in the past. For example, most people know now that if someone is suffering from anorexia, the worst thing you can do is tell them they're too skinny... they don't need to reinforce the idea that their body is wrong and they need to change it, this only makes the problem worse. But in the 90's it became almost a trend to joke about models and actresses needing to "eat a sandwich" as some sort of fucked up way of combating eating disorders. My impression, when MJ died, was that he had been mocked, ridiculed (seriously, I remember some of those comedy bits, and they were savage), and driven deeper into the grips of the personal, psychological issues that had caused him to alter his appearance and behave so eccentrically. In a way, I felt like the world mourned him so affectionately because we were afraid WE had killed him, and we had never, and would never, get closure on the accusations against him, or be able to see him come back from the brutal treatment he'd received from the media, and it really kind of felt like we had ridiculed this sensitive, damaged man until he retreated into an addiction that killed him. This hit me hard at the time. I have a great deal of empathy for the suffering MJ went through as a child, and the suffering he went through later in life as a cultural punching bag, but it is absolutely crystal clear to me that he sexually abused those children, and got away with it through sheer starpower. He needed help as a child when he was being abused, and people were too enamoured with his talent to do anything. He needed help at so many points in his life (including help with his impulses to engage in sex acts with children), and everyone who could or should have intervened decided to bury their heads in the sand and just enjoy his music. It's too late for Michael, but we can still intervene to help his victims, by believing them, by not ignoring what happened to them and blindly venerating "The King of Pop," and by giving them the space and respect to heal in their own way, in their own time. We can let others who may have potentially been victims control their own narrative, rather than rampantly speculating and hounding them about what may or may not have happened. We can watch for the signs of grooming, especially when we see red flags with celebrities, and we can remind ourselves that no one's talent is greater than another person's life. If the documentary made anything clear, I hope it's that. So much love for James and Wade, who showed incredible strength coming forward. I hope they inspire others to do the same, even if only to themselves or their loved ones.
  3. Slovenly Muse

    What Are We Currently Reading?

    And I'll confess that I did not read every word Moby Dick had to say about sperm! 😉 Thanks for the words of discouragement! I am determined to finish, but I know it is crazy. When I started Ulysses, I didn't tell anyone I was reading it, A: Because it's impossible to say the words "I'm reading Ulysses" out loud and not sound like an asshole, and B: I wanted to read it for the pleasure of experiencing the so-called greatest work of English literature, and not for some empty reason like bragging rights. But now that I'm this far in, I'm seeing how much of an achievement just finishing this book really is! Like running a marathon - regardless of what I thought or felt along the way, I deserve a T-shirt just for reaching the end, damn it! Those bragging rights are starting to look pretty appealing. I understand Finnegan's Wake is even worse for that. Joyce really did love his nonsense! I love The Dubliners so much, learning about (and experiencing) his novels is a hard pill to swallow. There exists a photo of me affectionately cuddling the statue of Joyce in Dublin. I may burn that picture before this book is done! It's a... ugh... "comedy," supposedly, covering one full day in Dublin (mostly one specific person's day, with a few other POVs), and everything that happens to the main character over the course of the day is intended to mirror or parody a chapter of the epic journey of Odysseus. I can't say it's not brilliant, but I can say it's extremely frustrating. I'm doing it, though! I've come too far to give up now!
  4. Slovenly Muse

    What Are We Currently Reading?

    Whew. Well, friends, ever since I saw it listed as #1 on a list of greatest works of English literature back in high school, it has been my personal goal to read James Joyce's Ulysses before I die. I'm not intimidated by big books, and I've studied a lot of classic literature (I didn't major in English Lit, but it was close). I'm 35, so I've had this goal awhile, and I recently finished Infinite Jest, so I felt ready to take on a new challenge, and I decided to give it a go. Man, oh, man, this book is unlike anything I've ever seen before. I realized right away that it is not the kind of book you just "read." I did a bit of research, and now I'm reading Ulysses in one hand (a 700 page book, thankfully on my Kobo), a book of annotations in the other (another 700 page book, thankfully on my phone), and the SparkNotes summary/analysis of each section cued up on my browser. Yep, reading this book in any meaningful way means reading 3 books at once. I am committed to finishing this book before I die, even if I have to live another hundred years to do it! Seriously, I can see why this is the book with one of the lowest reader completion rates... it's hard to keep going! Each section is long and difficult, punctuated by flashes of brilliance that make it worthwhile, but depending on the section, those flashes can be very far apart. Each section is written in a unique style. Some are beautiful, poetic, and absolutely a delight to read, and others are a completely interminable, impenetrable slog. The delight one feels in finally finishing a section is matched only by the dread of beginning the next. I've been reading it for months and I'm about a third of the way through. I'm not letting myself read anything else until I finish this, because I know if I start another book for casual reading, I'll get distracted and never pick up Ulysses again, so of course, all I want to do now is read something else! But I'm gonna do it. I'm going to finish this book! Has anyone else climbed this mountain? Any words of wisdom for me?
  5. Slovenly Muse

    The Annual Academy Awards Topic

    I wasn't really a fan of ANY of the songs this year, but I will speak up in defense of "poor" performances. Yes, Jennifer Hudson and Bradley Cooper, and perhaps others, did not sound their best, but they were performing live under stressful conditions... We don't realize how many performances we see (even at live concerts & events) that are pre-recorded to perfection and lip-synced or artificially enhanced (like Mariah's high notes during that New Years debacle). Hearing someone sing in a way that is natural and not produced or touched-up in studio is always going to sound rough compared to the way we are used to hearing those songs. Kudos to them for doing it the scary way. The Best Picture win was thoroughly disappointing, but I agree with others that it often is. For my money, a "Best Picture"-calibre film leaves me walking out of the theatre feeling impressed by what was accomplished, like my horizons and preconceptions about what cinema can be, and what depth or nuance of stories it can tell, have been expanded. Films that I maybe thoroughly enjoyed, but that leave me thinking more about what I WISH had happened, or what could have been improved, are not Oscar-worthy in my mind. This year, The Favourite, Black Panther, and Roma were the nominees that wowed me (First Reformed actually hit that same button, and I'm amazed it wasn't nominated considering what was). BlacKkKlansman really impressed me, but I had a few issues with it. Green Book and Bohemian Rhapsody I had a LOT of issues with, even though I enjoyed both films. I think more often than not, an enjoyable film I have notes for wins BP over something that truly dazzled me, sorry that this year fit the pattern. I am glad Alfonso Cuaron won best director, even though it was from a selection of STILL all-male nominees (there were several female directors who had films nominated for Oscars this year, but none of them for best director. Hmm.) And I'm happy for Ali, but I was pulling for Adam Driver in the supporting actor category. He never seems to get the recognition he deserves. I thought best lead actress was Glenn Close's for sure, but I'm glad it was Olivia Coleman she lost to, as her performance was very deserving. Overall, a pretty unremarkable ceremony.
  6. Hi there! When I go to "Manage Followed Content" in my account, I can only see the topics I follow, not the forums. When I click on the "forums" button, I get this screen: Sorry, there is a problem Something went wrong. Please try again. Error code: EX1054 (I'm using Firefox on Windows 10, and I use a Javascript blocker, but even when it's disabled the problem persists. Any suggestions?)
  7. Slovenly Muse


    This so much. You know who got abused a whole bunch and DIDN'T turn into a violent psycho? Seemingly everyone in this story but you. When we think about the cycle of violence, and how often abusers use their own trauma to explain their behaviour, well, yes, it can sometimes help explain or give context to your life, but it doesn't excuse anything. It's important to contrast stories like John's with stories like his neighbour's ("I swore I would never stand by and watch another woman treated the way my mother was.") People often say or believe dismissive things about victims of violence being somehow "doomed" to revisit that violence on others, but it's simply not true: a wide range of reactions are possible, and no one gets to evade personal responsibility for the intentional harm they cause others. ITA about the state of their lives now clarifying the truth of the case. The media tried to portray John and Lorena as some sort of "toxic combination" where they were both at fault. He was inconsiderate and she was hot-blooded or whatever. But look at what happened once they were separated. He went on to abuse multiple other women, and she made personal sacrifices, willingly endured public mockery, to raise awareness and offer material aid to women who were suffering as she had. Then, she got remarried and as far as we know, hasn't cut off her new husband's penis even once. So who's the toxic one, really?
  8. Slovenly Muse

    S04.E08: Kimmy Is in a Love Square!

    For me, the puppet thing was ALL WORTH IT as soon as THE PUPPETEER went on the news and tried to deny everything. I mean, the puppeteer trying to act as a character witness for the puppet is surreal and hilarious on its face, but it also completely NAILS the absurd way these dickswabs transparently cover for each other. I also love that Titus' story speaks to the type of sexual harrassment/abuse story that is NOT widely shared - the story of the victims who acquiesced under pressure and gave their harassers what they wanted. There is a unique brand of shame in seeing other victims sharing their stories that end with "and I got out of that room as fast as I could," knowing that your story ended differently, and not only do you blame yourself even more, you know that there's no way you could share your story publicly and still maintain a shred of dignity. So far, I think this batch of episodes is off to the right start!
  9. Slovenly Muse

    Tidying Up With Marie Kondo

    I NEVER watch reality TV, but Marie Kondo's book changed my life when it first came out, and I couldn't resist seeing her in action! I agree that the Friend family was super annoying and a poor way to start the series, and I do wish they had explained the reasoning behind Kondo's method more thoroughly for people who hadn't read her book, but as the series went on I really started appreciating what it was doing well. For one thing, this show is not the typical Hoarders-style voyeuristic exploitation fare, where people are really sick and for some reason getting therapy on TV for us to gawk at. These people are just not happy, and need some help tidying. Marie's job isn't to come in and counsel them about their relationship, or force them to let go of treasured possessions, or makeover their whole home for them, or judge whether they are right or wrong to keep this or get rid of that. She wants them to be happy, and she's showing them how to do the work for themselves that will help them figure out what is right for them. These families, even the more extreme-looking cases like the lady with all the nutcrackers, or the guy with all the sneakers, they're not really hoarders, they're not sick. They just have a lot of stuff and they're having a hard time getting rid of it, which is totally normal for a lot of people, especially in the US where homes are larger than in countries with higher population density. I lived like that for ages (and still do sometimes, I admit). We might live in a bigger space than we strictly need, and we end up filling it with stuff, because it's natural to expand into the space you occupy. We get attached to stuff because it used to be important to us, or there are memories connected with it, or because having a house full of stuff gives us the illusion that our lives are also full - it's completely normal (though obviously not desirable) to live in clutter like these families do. But this isn't an intervention - these people know they have too much stuff, they want to tidy it up, and they just need some help with a structured process. Marie isn't advising them to keep or get rid of individual items, or judging or pressuring them, just helping them understand for themselves what items actually bring them happiness, and what is just junk. And what I loved about the series was that eventually, everyone got it, and they all got it for themselves. The guy who was having a terrible time getting rid of stuff, holding that old mailbox in his hands, decided that even though it was a good memento of the past, it wasn't something he needed in his future, and that was a turning point. Once everyone experienced how good it felt to unburden themselves of stuff they didn't need, and how good it felt to see space opening up in their homes, the process just rolled downhill to the end. People (like me) who like collecting things don't often get to experience the joy of getting rid of things (usually it's someone else trying to get rid of your stuff, which just makes you dig your claws in harder), but once we do, it really is a life-changer, and it really is easier to keep your home in order once you get how good it feels to have a place for everything, and to have a space you can feel proud to show off to friends and family. I just enjoyed seeing regular, messy people get to experience that. Kondo is so kooky and delightful - I love that her techniques are a little bonkers! From greeting the house to letting handbags "rest" to expressing gratitude to items before discarding them - obviously this is not for the good of the object itself, just a way to shift the way you think about the items you use. I don't use the handbag suggestion, and part of me thinks it's just a better technique for people who have multiple purses and might not use the same one every day - it's easier to cycle through bags when your stuff is out of the old bag and ready to be thrown into the new one on your way out the door. But the rest of me knows that this is actually a very sensible suggestion that I SHOULD be doing, especially because I use the same bag every day! I accumulate so much crap in my bag, and I forget it's there and don't notice it until I'm somewhere pulling out my wallet and wondering why it won't fit back in properly, and of course I can't deal with my junk when I'm out and about. If I opened my bag and confronted what was inside it every day at home, it would be SO much tidier and easier to use. But ultimately a bit too labour-intensive for the reward. And expressing gratitude to items - I love this. Obviously the shirt doesn't care if you thank it. It's just a way of giving yourself a moment of closure with something before you get rid of it. It does a lot of people good to "say goodbye" to something they are having a hard time parting with, or accepting that something they loved so much they wore it completely out will never again give them that same enjoyment, or maybe getting rid of clothes they've never worn or books they haven't read - how do you get rid of something that you haven't even used yet? "Thanking" the item is just a way of accepting that it's done all it's going to do for you, and releasing yourself from the obligation to eventually wear it, or read it, or do something with it to justify having bought it. I didn't LOVE this show, but I did find it strangely compelling, even if only because it reminded me of how good it felt to "Kondo" my own apartment. I liked that it was low-stakes, non-judgmental, and not voyeuristic to the point of being exploitative. I also liked how universal it was - everyone has to figure out how to manage their stuff and their space. Watching people figure it out was kind of soothing and rewarding. I liked it!
  10. That supposes the problem is that they don't have access to the books. It's not. Roz had a copy of "The Bluest Eye" in her hands at the beginning. The problem is that the school is secretly censoring the library, removing books from the shelves that it purports to have available, and dictates which classic works of literature are acceptable for an open-ended book report. The students shouldn't HAVE to travel to another library or spend their own money on books the school library says are available. I agree the resolution was weird, but I was disappointed they ended with a secret book club, and not by continuing to pressure the school to end its paternalistic practice of censorship.
  11. Yeah, it came up in her conversation with Father Blackwell. She was rightly concerned that Satan got to choose what she did with her body (no indication yet if men are also expected to remain virgins). That's what gave the birthmark scene some extra energy - the fact that it was the first time they'd seen each other like that. I disagree. It shouldn't be our go-to solution that girls should have to sacrifice their right to make decisions for themselves about their bodies and their sexuality (whether it's having sex before they have decided they are ready, or "saving" themselves for someone they don't even know yet) in order to protect themselves from being victimized by patriarchal bullshit. It defeats the purpose. It would be devastatingly unfair if Sabrina had had sex for the very first time with Harvey because her church (or anti-church) forced her into it, not because it was truly her choice. Plus, it still would have been "breach of promise" since she had "promised" herself (virginity and all) to the Dark Lord, so I don't see what that could have done for her besides hasten a "guilty" verdict. I admire the fact that the show is standing its ground on objecting to the PRINCIPLE of religious over-involvement in women's personal sexual choices, rather than avoiding saying anything about the issue by finding a convenient loophole. I'm a ways beyond this episode now, and something I'm really enjoying about the show is the way it seems to comment on Christianity and its institutions by slyly ascribing real attributes of the religion (like the expectation of virginity: dictating girls' sexual choices and basing their worth only on what they haven't done) to the fictional Satanic version - which make perfect sense when the religion is "evil," but also forces us to confront the fact that the so-called "good" church does them too.
  12. I don't know. I don't think they're trying to portray real-life witchcraft (or real-life Satanism, for that matter), more like imagining that witches are what they were believed to be during the Salem witch trials (having the witches on the show connected in a fictionalized way with the real history of the region). That way, the individual witches aren't necessarily good or evil (so we can root for them), but their power DOES come from a place of darkness and servitude to Satan, as was feared by the puritans, and the Salem witch hunts are a feature of the past that is still hanging over the heads of witches in the present, hence their secrecy. I also don't get the impression the show is denigrating or pushing one religion over another ("Satansim" (a fictionalized version) vs. Christianity) - more like laying the groundwork for themes of rebellion against patriarchal organized religion in general. (Which is, funnily enough, more in line with real-life Satanism, which is not about evil at all, but about putting rational free thought over superstitious beliefs.) After all, how do you set up a dichotomy between two religions that BOTH require girls to save their virginity for marriage, call out that practice as patriarchal bullshit, and still try to claim that one of them is right? I get the sense this show is preparing to burn it ALL to the ground!
  13. Slovenly Muse

    S01.E10: Silence Lay Steadily

    I see what you mean, and you're right. It could be both. I'm just not sure that any behaviour we saw as being "off" didn't end up getting explained by true experiences. All of Olivia's erratic behaviour (blackouts, fugue states, talking to no one, drawing the "Forever Home" in the blueprints) was explained by Poppy haunting her and manipulating her experiences. Luke's imaginary friends turned out to be real. The Bent-Neck Lady haunting Nell turned out to not be just sleep paralysis, but the actual ghost of future Nell. Theo's sensitivity and psychic impressions are true and reliable enough that she can use it to solve crimes. Shirley and Stephen were in denial about things they saw and experienced, but they really did happen. The only thing that MAY have been just in someone's head was the bowler hat man haunting Luke as an adult. It could have been real, or it could have been PTSD from seeing the bowler hat man (who is real) as a child. But if it's PTSD, it's from a real experience, not an inherited condition. Even Mr. Dudley said that Olivia's behaviour was very reminiscent of what his own mother had gone through after spending too much time in the house, meaning that the symptoms are not unique to the family. I feel like the "mental illness" idea was floated by Stephen to explain everyone's ongoing issues (not damaged from the house, but "ill"), but I'm not sure we really saw any evidence that it was a factor. (I wish we had, though, because that is a GREAT concept for a horror story. A schizophrenic in a haunted house who can't tell what's real? Yes, please! I would watch that Mr. Robot/Hill House crossover FOR SURE!)
  14. Slovenly Muse

    S01.E10: Silence Lay Steadily

    I think the hold the house had over her was The Bent-Neck Lady. It haunted her after she moved out of the house, and she believed TBNL killed Arthur. Her doctor suggested to her that she put too much power into her memories and thoughts about the house, and that it was probably now just an old carcass in the woods, and TBNL was just a hallucination (I don't think he meant for her to really go back, but he hadn't meant for her to really confront Stephen the way she did at his book signing either - she was a little... "scattered" from being haunted and not believed and off her meds, and didn't always take the right message away from her sessions). She went back to see if it really WAS an old carcass, if The Bent-Neck Lady was really just a nightmare brought on by sleep paralysis, and once the house had her back in it's grip, it killed her. (At no point did she make the decision to end her own life, so I maintain that the house killed her, and not that she killed herself.) Basically, in order to have any kind of life after Arthur died, she needed to know whether she was haunted (as she believed), or insane (as everyone told her), and going back to the house really was the only way to know for sure. What "inherited issues" do you mean? I wondered if Stephen's talk about mental illness had some basis in reality, but since everything that happened at the house has turned out to be real (or not shown to be untrue), I'm not sure that mental instability had any sort of role to play, and wasn't just a red herring. The only thing I think we know that Olivia's kids inherited from her was a sensitivity to the supernatural, and even then, I'm not sure that was a factor in what happened, because it sounds like the Dudleys had similar experiences, and they were never shown to be sensitive. I really wish the show had clarified this a little more, or not started down roads they weren't prepared to explore.
  15. Slovenly Muse

    S01.E10: Silence Lay Steadily

    Thank goodness this is bothering you, too! My rant was so long, I didn't want to get even more bogged down, but yeah, this stuff just doesn't track: Completely! And Hugh specifically told Stephen that he has a version of Olivia with him at all times, as a coping mechanism that many widows/widowers experience and is normal, but that the things he (Stephen) was seeing were NOT that. Meaning the show deliberately distinguishes between "real" hauntings and metaphorical ones. But then how do we square ghost Olivia's accusation that Hugh never comes to visit (preferring the fake version of her he imagines), with the manifestations of her that appeared to the siblings and smashed Shirley's "Forever Home" model? If she can't leave the house, and is dependent on him coming to her, AND the visions of her we've seen outside the house are definitely not just hallucinations, then where does that leave us? And furthermore, if time is not linear but rather "like confetti" falling all around us, and Nell is able to haunt herself BEFORE she actually died (showing Flanagan's penchant for playing with time) (and I've also seen some speculation elsewhere that sometimes, when Luke saw Abigail, he may have been seeing her ghost haunting the past before she died - I don't know if that is supported), then why don't we see apparitions now of people who WILL die in the house in the future? Like Mrs. Dudley, and presumably her husband? Or is that just specific to Nell? SO! MUCH! THIS! Aside from the fact that Leigh was willing to hear Stephen out and maybe reconcile (which was maddening, like the writers didn't understand how deeply he had betrayed her), this drove me bonkers. "Honey, there's something absolutely awful I have to tell you, and I'm terrified to do it, but will anyway. Is it that the house I grew up in was for-real haunted and killed a good chunk of my family and tried to kill me too, and the ghost of my dead sister saved my life, and I'm afraid you'll think I'm crazy?... No, it's that I cheated on you one time, and WHAT COULD BE HARDER TO UNDERSTAND THAN THAT?!" Boo. Ah, but here's where you're wrong! It's all been cunningly crafted, you see. If you LIVE in the house, and stay there after dark, then it will be able to work its terrible will on you, and manipulate you into doing something unthinkable, like killing yourself and/or your children so that you can be together forever, and that will turn out to actually work well for you and have been the right decision and why didn't you listen to the house sooner it only had your best interests at heart! Yeah, with this one there actually was a body. But it was still pretty ambiguous. Hugh told Olivia's ghost that he would make her a promise if she let the kids go (which is ridiculous: if she doesn't, they will all die in the room, and she can kill Hugh right then and there and have them all - she's already "won" and there is no incentive to stop), then she opened the door and Hugh helped Luke and the others out and down to the car, then came back with Stephen to show him the whole story of Olivia's death. The flashback sequence ends with Stephen and Hugh standing at the top of the spiral staircase, and Hugh looks down to see his body lying at his feet on the platform with the empty pill bottle beside him (his heart medication). Then he turns young and goes into the Red Room. It is NOT clear when he died, and as far as I can recall there was no explanation of what was done with the body. The Dudley's were able to touch and hug the ghost of Abigail, so maybe Hugh killed himself on the spot to convince Olivia, and it was his ghost that helped Luke down to the car. (But then how did he leave the house? The door has been suggested visually as a barrier between what is IN the house and what is not, so how did he cross it when no other ghost does?) Otherwise he kept Stephen back to tell him about Olivia's death and to help/watch Hugh kill himself, which REALLY would require more exploration than we saw. So I don't know what to make of that scene either. Maybe a viewer who wasn't cursing the TV for most of the episode caught more details than me and could fill this in. And can I just say, the idea that the house is some sort of supernatural vending machine where you put in your life and it instantly cranks out your ghost, is laughable. Seeing SO MANY people die and then just instantly appear as ghosts over their bodies, looking and sounding and BEING exactly like they were in life, is not the way effective ghost stories are told. The horror comes from the creeping energy of a life that barely remembers what it was, assembling itself into a twisted facsimile of its living self, and manifesting in ways it's former self would find abhorrent... THAT'S the way ghost stories are told in the horror genre. This insta-ghost, happily-ever-after technique? Is straight out of a supernatural comedy. In summation: Boo.