Black Spot Seasons 1 and 2

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Since the entirety of October is officially Halloween this year (shut up, you!), we at Psycho Drive-In have decided to attempt to fill the month with thirty-one recommendations for horror-related movies, comics, books, TV shows, toys, games, and everything in-between. It’s gonna be a grab-bag of goodies we feel you should be exposed to, whether you like it or not! But don’t expect your standard suggestions for Halloween fun, we’re digging into some stuff that we love in the hopes that you might make this October a little bit weirder than usual.

Weirder in a good way. Not like what’s going on outside in the hellscape of 2020.

Black Spot is a French-Belgian television supernatural thriller (originally called Zone Blanche or White Zone in French), set in the fictional town of Villefranche, a small town surrounded by 50,000 acres of forest and mountains where electronics and cell phone reception is spotty (ha!) at best and the murder rate is six times higher than the national average. It’s a little bit Twin Peaks and a little bit Supernatural with a mystery-of-the-week format that still finds time to move an over-arcing story along through its two seasons.

There’s a lot of straight up folk horror going on in this show and it handles it all pretty well, even if it does take its time getting to it. For most of season one’s eight fifty-five-ish minute episodes, we get what seems like a pretty standard European cop show in the vein of The Killing, Happy Valley, Marcella, or any number of others (female lead who’s a single mom with a mysterious past, a troubled kid and a new partner, lots of secrets in town getting revealed along the way). But then we find out that our lead, Major Laurene Weiss (Suliane Brahim) disappeared in the woods when she was a teen, was chained to a tree by some sort of creature, and mysteriously escaped but has never put the trauma behind her.

Yup. There’s a monster in the woods. And the season one finale is just batshit crazy.

Then, once Season Two gets underway and after a flashback to 57 B.C. (just some Roman soldiers getting hunted by a monster in the woods), the environmental activists who were lingering around all Season One get shoved front and center as Weiss’s daughter gets caught up with them. All this while discovering that others may know about the creature in the woods, who is possibly, she finds out, Cernunnos, the Deer God.

So yeah, watch Season One of Black Spot for the quirky humor and inventive weekly mysteries, but stick around for Season Two for full-on folk horror, including lots of weirdness, surprising betrayals, the Celtic day of the dead, a ton of unnerving animal bones, and environmental terrorism.

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