FROM Season 1 Episode 3 Review: Choosing Day

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Choosing Day is a hell of a day.

You don't get much time to adjust to anything in the town before deciding where you want to reside for an indeterminate amount of time. There's the mild-mannered town on one side and the free-loving Colony House on the other. What's a person to choose?

FROM Season 1 Episode 3 saw the Matthews family (and Jade) faced with that choice, and the answers were surprising.

Coming To Grips - Tall - From Season 1 Episode 3

A society like this one would never survive if there weren't some rules in place. Everything would collapse in on itself without the semblance of civility.

So it makes sense that at some point in the town's history, there was a separation between the people. It doesn't seem to be a gapping split, though once you make your choice, that's it.

There's no love lost between Boyd and Donna, as the two leaders of their respective packs, and there's something up with Boyd and Ellis. Other than that, people don't fistfight in the streets or anything. It seems more like an 'I'll stay on my side, and you'll stay on your side, and everything will be just fine' kind of arrangement.

As weird as it is to say this, the town is the more kid-friendly place to be. The hour opens with a sweeping view of the Colony House, and there are two people having sex a few feet away from where the Matthews family is trying to get some sleep. It has a more grown-up vibe to it.

Living in a co-ed funhouse sounds nice on paper, but the day-to-day would not be for everyone.

Family Struggles - From Season 1 Episode 3

Even though one of the bedrooms in their new house presumably smells of fresh blood, Jim, Tabitha, and Ethan choose the town while Julie goes rogue and stays with her new best friend, Fatima. It was a predictable outcome, based on how the hour was unfolding, with Julie slowly giving into Fatima's attempts at inclusion.

But one thing that's apparent in this town is the importance of sticking together. The Matthews family was already fractured before they landed there, and it's only getting increasingly worse.

Tabitha is struggling the most with everything, and it's relatable. Our brains often fight back against the things we can not understand, and to be trapped in a nightmare is not something easy to digest.

Another town rule involves the box, which is a rust-filled hunk of metal that looks like it was perhaps once a horse trailer. It sits near Boyd's office/jail/bedroom, and it's the stuff of nightmares.

The box is a sort of necessary evil in a town like this. Again, things would be a chaotic disaster if there were no rules and no consequences. And that's just reality.

Tabitha Reflects - From Season 1 Episode 3

People would be running amok and doing whatever they wanted, which wouldn't be sustainable. So somewhere along the lines, these rules were made, and considering the relative "normalcy" of the town, they work.

We don't even need Boyd to tell us that the box was a scare tactic because it's obvious. Whether or not you can see it or not, you know everyone walks the streets every day with a sense of dread circling them. How they even get sleep at night is beyond me.

But just the thought of doing something wrong enough to warrant a night alone with no protection but some rusted metal will surely deter most people from doing harm, whether purposefully or not.

Well, most people besides Frank.

Okay, Frank messed up. We know he messed up, so does the town, and so does Frank. But spending a little time with him and hearing his story makes you see things a little differently.

Matthews At The House - From Season 1 Episode 3

His family needed him to be home with them, but Frank broke. The town broke him, and he coped by drinking himself into a stupor. It's not right, nor is it fair, but that's what a town like that will do. It strips more than just your ability to travel. It stunts you in so many ways, and everyone in that place has changed in indescribable ways.

No one could punish Frank more than he could punish himself. And when Boyd gave him an out, he couldn't take it because he didn't feel worthy of it.

Boyd is such a complex character, and we've only scratched the surface regarding his feelings and motivations. It almost feels like leadership was thrust upon him because it's not exactly something he relishes.

Boyd: Aren't you supposed to be talking to me about the virtues of mercy?
Khatri: I see. Is that what you'd prefer?
Boyd: Hey, I'd prefer not to put a broken man in a fucking box to be torn apart when the sun goes down! That's what I'd prefer.

The conversation between Boyd and Khatri was the highlight of the hour.

Hard Conversations - From Season 1 Episode 3

Boyd was just waiting for someone to tell him the box was wrong. He just needed someone to co-sign what he'd been thinking all day; that he didn't want to be directly responsible for another man's death.

You're a terrible fucking priest, you know that? Fucking worst. Now I'm cursing in a house of the Lord. What the fuck is this?

Boyd [to Khatri]

But Khatri wouldn't give that to him. He wouldn't give him that satisfaction. Instead, he was pushing back pretty hard. He wasn't wrong to question what would happen next if they bypassed the one primary form of punishment they had because it was cruel and unjust.

It's really an arrangement that isn't so black and white under this set of circumstances because you have to look at it from every angle, which is what Boyd was trying to do.

Boyd: Look, it's important for you to understand that what happens tonight, it's not personal.
Frank: I know. She liked you. Lauren. She always liked you. Said you were hard on people because you had to be. Made the decisions other people couldn't. You're the one that was gonna get everybody home.

I don't envy Boyd's position in being the person who has to make that kind of choice. But the town needs a leader. And it's okay to be morally conflicted and confused because there's no manual on how to operate in a pressure cooker of this nature.

I've raved about the acting on this series to this point, and this was the hour where you get to see Harold Perrineau shine. He does so much in those muted moments, whether he's staring at the box or sitting inside the box himself trying to decide what comes next.

But it's the raw emotion just radiating off him at all times that endears you to Boyd. It's hard to pinpoint exactly who he is, but you feel for him, and that's a testament to the writing and the performance. Perrineau is a fabulous lead here, and his quiet brilliance is perfect for this kind of role.

The Sheriff Reflects - From Season 1 Episode 3

We all knew Jade would be annoying based on his first impression, but it was worse than I even thought.

You have to imagine reactions after that initial talk are all over the place, but how many people thought they were in some elaborate escape room?

Jade spends his whole first day being as obnoxious as possible but leave it to Kenny to finally break through to him and make him see the gravity of the situation. But now what?

We don't know Jade (we don't know anyone, really), but he seems like that kind of person who won't be sitting around and going to the diner every day and just existing in this world. He looks like a doer, and he'll probably be all over the town trying to figure out how the hell to get home.

We haven't gotten much by way of theories about getting out of the town, as there have been more pressing issues, like multiple murders and new arrivals. But there's no way these people haven't spent countless hours trying to figure a way out, right?

Jade Explores - From Season 1 Episode 3

Loose Ends

  • RIP Frank. It's a shame your family never got that Christmas morning.
  • Victor has definitely seen some things over however long he's been there. And I desperately want to know more about why he thinks the trees are moving, but he should probably stay away from Ethan. Jim and Tabitha are like two seconds away from losing it.
  • It was such a tense moment at the choosing ceremony, but Boyd telling Donna to shut up was hilarious.
  • Speaking of the choosing ceremony, very poignant to have to choose between hard, rigid rock and a sweet, whimsical flower.
Sitting Still - From Season 1 Episode 3
  • So Colony House has fruit trees growing out back, and there are cows and chickens that just exist there for consumption. Well, there's my answer about where the food comes from.

From is definitely a horror tale, but it's also so much deeper than that. It's truly a fascinating character study that keeps getting better.

Let me know in the comments about your new theories and what answers you're hoping for next.

Remember, you can watch FROM online via TV Fanatic anytime your heart desires!

Frank's Time - From Season 1 Episode 3

Choosing Day Review

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Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (6 Votes)

Whitney Evans is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.

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FROM Season 1 Episode 3 Quotes

Ethan: How long are we going to be here?
Tabitha: We are figuring that out.

Boyd: Look, it's important for you to understand that what happens tonight, it's not personal.
Frank: I know. She liked you. Lauren. She always liked you. Said you were hard on people because you had to be. Made the decisions other people couldn't. You're the one that was gonna get everybody home.