Dare Me Episode 4: Rapprochement- Review and Recap
A music-filled moody Dare Me Episode 4 is so angsty it hurts as our girls continue to go wild.
It’s a curious title for episode four. Rapprochement can mean a couple of different things. In foreign policy, it means a forming of harmonious partnerships usually due to common enemies. It can also mean the point in a child’s life when they first reach for their mother. Both definitions work within the context of Dare Me Episode 4. In Raprochement tenuous alliances are defined and Beth seeks comfort from her destructive parents. Neither is healthy. It is a perfect term to use for the series as a whole. Shifting dynamics and power struggles are facades for sad girls who look for happiness in all the wrong places.
Addy’s creamy voice continues to bookend the mysterious drama. Her dulcet tones lure the viewer in each week creating false calm. She sounds put together and in control. Addy is anything but though. She is just a naive girl, playing at a game she is not equipped to play. Dare Me may be a mystery box thriller, but it’s as much about why something happened then who did it.
Women have come a long way. Unfortunately, as a gender we still have a long way to go. We are constantly putting ourselves in dangerous positions and giving agency to bad actors. “Every woman wears a mask”, Addy says Coach told her. That mask is the fortification you present to the world. It is our protection, our sentry, our illusion. Addy, Beth, and RiRi apply their makeup like warpaint designed to protect them from the real world. Coach French wears a frozen one constantly. The consummate ice queen holding everyone at bay. She thinks as many women do, they have to be all things to all people all the time. It’s not necessary to be perfect, just real and she is teaching these girls all the wrong things.
That quest for protection has led Colette to make poor life choices. She hates her life. It’s too staid, too boring. Desperate to capture the freedom of youth she has her young charges over all the time now. Her house has become a continuous house party of underage drinking and twerking. During the day she fills her time with lusty hookups in locked classrooms. It’s hard to say who is more pathetic. Beth who craves attention and validation or Colette who yearns for the youth she thinks she missed out on.
Marlo Kelly(Beth) and Willa Fitzgerald(Coach French) are fire and ice. They each burn the screen in different ways. Painfully powerful these two women dominate the series. Manipulative and foolhardy they lead with their chins. Worship me from afar they shout as they beg for love. Neither woman knows what love looks like. Love for them is painful.
They are users who develop relationships for what friends or lovers offer. A ride from a hookup or fear. It makes no difference if they are feared or revered the result is the same. Adoration is the name of the game. Any praise she gives Addy is designed to drive a wedge between her and Beth. She needs to break that bond at all costs. Developing her confidence is less about being a good coach and more about cultivating an acolyte who will be so grateful they will do anything for them.
The adults in Beth’s life have taught her nothing but how to lose. Beth’s mother tells her she has to play the part to get by in life. Be the pretty little daughter or fuckable sexpot. For a girl like Beth who has been shown nothing but dysfunction, it is believable advice. Her father certainly treats women like fragile flowers or receptacles for his desires. They need to either be pretty and needy or sexy and quiet. As much as Beth appears to be in control she is a lost little girl. With very little to look forward to but heartbreak and booze, she tells her Mom she hopes she never grows up at all. Since we still don’t know who’s blood has been spilled she may very well get her wish.
Beth’s father thinks he can make his two daughters get along through therapy. he fails to realize his own behavior is what has caused the problem. Allison Thorton(Tacy) has been a bit of a simpering baby in the first three episodes. More a device to showcase Beth’s surly attitude than a fully-fledged person, Tacy was a throwaway character. That changed in Dare Me Episode 4 when a glimpse behind her mask revealed a girl who fights with tears and feminine wiles. Her scene with Kelly’s Beth and Paul Fitzgerald(Bert Cassidy) is electric with crackling disfunction.
Beth who first was presented as a predator, hell-bent on hurting Tacy is now seen as a frustrated and damaged child lashing out at those who have hurt her. Tacy may give the appearance of weakness but she knows exactly how to warp her father’s mind. For her, percieved weakness is a weapon. Crocodile tears and flushed cheeks go a long way to persuade others.
Tacy’s performance at the therapist puts her losing in the ice bath from episode three in question. It is just as likely she faked it for sympathy than actually passed out. Knowledge is power and by the end of the session, Beth shows she can play the part and strike like a viper when she blurts out her father’s infidelity.
Not to be outdone by the women, Sarge Will and his marine recruiters are giving a master class in horrible behavior. Will who seems like the least terrible of the group has been alone with a high schooler in every episode now and has flaunted an illicit affair in front of Addy. At least he attempted to open Slocum’s eyes to the sacrifice needed to be in service. His speech to Slocum come off as glorifying rather than warning.
Too bad Will is oblivious to the other’s conquests. What they are doing has consequences. The young girls they are partying with have no idea how much trouble they are in. Beth may think she can control her boy toy Corporal Kurtz but her bloodied mouth and his flippant confession of a crime tell a different story.
By the end of Dare Me Episode 4, it’s clear Beth is in trouble. She is a girl in crisis. Her mask is slipping and no amount of false bravado can save her. We don’t know what happened to beth, but it looks bad. Addy may finally be learning that Coach French is only her friend when she needs something from her. With so many predators around her it’s too bad it will be too late. Catch up on all our coverage here.
- Best line of the night goes to Beth. “Money can’t buy you class, but it sure can buy you a fuckton of inland sushi.”
- The Stanford Prison Experiment is fascinating in its own right. It was a social experiment that proved power discrepancies and mob mentality can change even good people. Treat people like criminals and strip them of their identity and they behave like criminals. The experiment lasted only six days before it was abandoned due to safety concerns.
- Coach French is a first-rate gaslighter. Listening to her justify her abhorrent behavior is gross but amazing. Encouraging underage partying as a teacher and forgetting her baby are bad things I don’t care who you are. To find a way to blame these things on Matt who gives the appearance of being a kind husband is impressive.
As the Television Editor for Signal Horizon, I love watching and writing about genre tv. I grew up with old school slashers, but my real passion is television and all things weird and ambiguous. When I not watching and writing about my favorite movies and series, I’m introducing my family to the wonderful world of sci-fi, fantasy, and horror. My only regret there is not enough time in the day to watch everything.