The Haunting of Bly Manor ★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

what makes me so annoyed is that it could have been so so good. it could have been hill house good, the potential was there.

instead of 9 episodes, we could have had a beautiful story at 5 episodes tops. the plot dragged on in a weird way where everything that felt important then suddenly they didn’t even matter, things were just sprung on to us and other things just did not make any sense. i am bitter and so i will list everything i can think of that i disliked:

- why the hell was victoria pedretti such a bad actress in this one when she was so amazing in hill house. the lip quivers... im literally insane at this point
- the uncle actor shut the fuck up what the fuck is that accent and a LISP too?:!:?:!/&/&
- the kids were so annoying, and its because they werent acting like kids at all, which brings me to
- peter and rebecca going inside the kids was fucking weird, there were literally other adults for them to use but they didnt???? that makes no sense. ALSO how come miles had a 30yr old personality when he was being “possessed” but flora was virtually the same. anyways
- danis backstory.... the way the build up did not match the pay off at all.... also showing the same “ghost” 50 times with a loud boom to earn a jump scare will not only make it not scary, but also annoying as fuck
- they kept building the mystery of how the parents died only to never deliver
- crying at floras dad realizing she wasnt his 6 yrs later fr
- none of the characters were particularly fleshed out in a way that would make them seem real or make you care about them, but im especially angry for hannah, the best character there whose actor did the best job imo, and she was treated in such a weird way???? there was no real focus of her except for ep 5 (their best episode by far)
- WHEN FLORA PUT THAT CREEPY MASK ON THE FACELESS CHILD IM IN TEARSJSEJJDJDDN that shit was so funny like the boys face wasnt scary at all and then she put that thing on to make it “better” please pelse
- jamies and danis relationship was adorable, but the progression was so fast it was a little jarring
- the writing of peter quint’s character was a fucking mess. it feels like they had no plans at all for him and were sort of winging it everytime he appeared in a scene (but that’s how i felt abt the entire show anyways). he’s a dick but then not but then yes but its actually ok and rebecca doesnt have that huge of an issue w him killing her????? alright!
- the little pieces of peters anger towards the rich were never once properly analyzed and made important. the whole scene where hes telling hannah the house isnt hers could have gone somewhere, we could have had something interesting and nuanced, but no.
- the fact that viola has been roaming the house for centuries and leaving muddy footprints but EVERYONE kept thinking it was the kids making a mess when a) presumably the messes kept happening when the children weren’t even there b) THE SIZE MATCHED A GROWN WOMANS FEET AND NOT A CHILDS”:@;8(!/@:;’jfjdkdkdkdkfk WAS NOBODY THINKING???
- and for my biggest issue of all: the whole viola haunting the house explanation. im sorry, but no. you cant just spring that up on your audience after 7 episodes, without ever having mentioned a single name, having shown their portraits before to create intrigue??!!???? without having mentioned ANYTHING about the history of the house. also how am i supposed to believe viola would not die simply because she did not want to. was she the first to ever not want to die that bad? thats really really hard to believe. it makes that whole story feel like a grab for #feminist #queen points. her killing everybody that was in her way as a ghost makes no sense. IF, for example, she only killed children because she thought they were her daughter and missed her, i’d believe that, that would make sense. the way she has been killing is batshit though. she can only kill one person at a time and only if theyre in her way? so she cant sense everything else around her? for a being without any ability to remember or make choices, driven only by some forgotten instinct, she seems to be awfully picky about who and how she kills.
- HOW is viola able to leave the house when none of the other ghosts could? this isnt one of the cute little mystery questions, when theres so many questions with no real answer, the plot feels weak and rushed
- i disliked the fact that the house was not a main character the way hill house was. it was never really part of anything, it was just there, AND it was impossible to understand. i feel like i have absolutely no idea of the architecture of the house, of where everything is located, which made everything feel even more confusing. with hill house, tou felt as if you yourself had lived in the house, and were familiar with the way it worked, without it losing its malicious and confusing character.
- jamies dramatic style transformation. we all grow but for a character to change so much in that way with no explanation at all? bad costume design. 
- the whole “my middle name is flora” situation. shut the fuck up. that either means that everyone elses names in the story are their middle names or that all the names in the story are fake, which doesnt make sense, because owen and hannah and dani and jamie are have the same names even years later, in different continents. and the children may not remember what happened at bly, but they kind of remember the people who were there, even if they simply know about them or have heard of them. which would point towards flora recognizing someone from the whole ghost story, which was never hinted at. im so ughggggh
- the whole jamie leaving her door open every night was made to be cute but its just stupid and funny. how has she not gotten robbed a thousand times. also, baby, if ur ghost wife finds ur country, ur hotel and ur hotel room, i promise she’ll figure it out if ur sleeping on the bed and not right in front of the door in a goddamn chair
- danis hand.... u mean to tell me they have never interacted all these years when they could (which begs the question, AGAIN: how could dani be there, is she not restricted to the manors grounds??) but they simply did not? or that was just a “ghost of the past”😍😍😍😍😍 thats lazy bruh
- ALSO the uncles doppelgänger situation. im not even going to try to ask why

in conclusion we could have had so much more, so much more intrigue and drama and mystery, and a reason to actually care about the characters. hannah owen and jamie you were amazing, but the writing just wasnt on your side.