Twitter is full of it this week. The silence vs the speaking out leaves me interested but conflicted. Austerity measures continue to disgust me. Dr Who bores me. Don’t understand fracking. Quite like fat bergs.
But I love love love Top of the Lake (BBC 2). It’s funny, it’s painful, it’s yuk. It’s scary, it’s beautiful, it’s a broken bottle that stabs the chest. It uses vulnerability, depicts vulnerability, and, most of all, makes me aware of my vulnerability.
That ‘GJ’, the commune leader with the hair – she’s an odd one. All her lines are exquisitely cruel and true. The majority of her words make me simultaneously rejoice and repent at my ultimate isolation. Holly Hunter, who plays her, was reduced to tears by the lines she had to deliver (as shown in the ‘making of’ program ‘From the Bottom of the Lake’). What GJ says to Robin’s mother about her impending death (ep. 4) makes for one of my favourite TV scenes of all time. How comforting GJ’s utter lack of sentimentality around mortality is.
Yet how sentimental the story makes me feel . Everyone’s been hurt, they all have a past, all are aware that there will be an ending. I find Robin and Johnno’s relationship truly romantic as they cling onto each other whilst ‘sinking deeper into the mud’, as Jane Campion puts it. Campion talks about how fragile social reality is and the series delivers this message incisively, frighteningly. I feel that it teaches me to take pleasure in life too though, to laugh as actual human motivation is revealed without the mask of social convention. Ooooooh it’s so good!
I’m dreading the end of the series, I’ll miss it so much. I’ll have to get back to my own ‘mental construct’ of life with the good bits and bad bits. And then, as Campion says, I’ll ‘stop…. and realise I’ve made my whole world up’.