Homeward

It’s always special to me when a beloved song from the past shows up in a contemporary work.

Simon and Garfunkel’s ballad “Homeward Bound” was skillfully used in the finale of a recent HBO series “The Leftovers”. (Spoiler Alert)

It is a thought-provoking work from the mind of Damon Lindelof, who entertained and confused us for years with “Lost”; this story based on a Tom Perrotta novel.

It addresses many of the same themes, with a particular emphasis on the sadness and desperation that often presents itself, a condition of the human experience. It also deals with hope, adaptation and redemption of the characters who remain after a mysterious departure of 2 % of the world population.

There is no attempt to explain the phenomenon, why some were taken, some left behind. There is no real reason to explain.

Leftovers Final Scene

Justin Theroux. Courtesy HBO.

What I was left with at the end of the series can be reflected in this image of Kevin Garvey, the lead character portrayed brilliantly by Justin Theroux.

After all he has been through, including two separate purgatory-like experiences that resulted in his return to life, he is reunited with what matters.

His family. His home.

Not a physical home, which is a dilapidated $3 million structure in a town that is no longer a place of peaceful refuge.

His home is this group of confused, disturbed, emotion-filled humans that share his life path. That is the only message that truly matters.

“I don’t understand what’s happening here.” “Me neither,” says Kevin peacefully. “It’s OK.”

For the rest, they will “Let the Mystery Be”.

 

 

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15 Responses to Homeward

  1. In real life and apparently in fiction, sometimes there is no other choice than to let the mystery be. And to know it’s okay. As they said in Shakespeare in Love. “The natural condition is one of insurmountable obstacles on the road to imminent disaster.” “What do we do?” “Nothing. Strangely enough, it all turns out well.” “How?” “I don’t know, it’s a mystery.”

  2. Erica Herd says:

    One of my favorite songs. Grew up in Jackson Heights, near where Simon & Garfunkel grew up.

    • I’ve been such a fan. It was no surprise to me how often their music is used to emphasize a story or plot point. They are brilliant, their music, timeless. Thanks, Erica. ☺

  3. Nurse Kelly says:

    Beautiful, Van. I wish I had HBO so I could see that show! Your words at the end are so poignant – “confused, disturbed, emotion-filled humans that share his life path,” so much truth there, but comforting truth that aims at bringing people together.

  4. mandy says:

    That sounds like such a great show, Van. I’d never heard the song but wow-it’s really powerful. Thanks for sharing it!

  5. George says:

    Terrific song and based on those final words, I can see how they would time in. I’ll have to check out the show on HBO

  6. Many times there are no answers to the question why. And I agree, home is a place in the heart made up of the people we care about. I haven’t watched the show, but I liked “Lost.” Thanks for the recommendation.

  7. Thanks Van! I went to view it! Very nice!

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