Dare Me Episode 9:Fog Of War-Review And Recap
A word-heavy Dare Me Episode 9 captures the heightened emotions of high school as things for Beth, Addy, and Coach spiral out of control.
What Dare Me has done better than any other series about teen life is show the often ridiculous highs and lows of young life. Everything is very important while simultaneously being safe AF. It’s the thing most high schoolers feel on a daily basis. The super-serious consequences of a friend sending a Snapchat that is less than flattering juxtaposed with the hubris to believe it’s perfectly safe to party hard. It’s like every child is Icarus flying higher and higher towards the intensity of the sun forgetting that it can burn. Dare Me Episode 9 brought everyone closer to the melting point.
Dare Me has always used music well to set the tone for the moody cheerleader mystery. It’s an odd mix of words to use to define a series. It fits into so many genres. That Violon D’Ingres or hidden talent many haven’t realized yet. Dare Me is at times a teen drama, a sudsy romance, a noir murder mystery, and a cheerleader’s guilty pleasure. In all those things, the music plays a vital role. This week Romeo + Juliet’s Red & Black and Courtney Barnett’s Shivers were perfect examples of well placed and styled music.
Now that Sarge Will’s death is public knowledge the school is reacting. Beth accuses the kids in her school of being grief vampires, but she is just as guilty. They all are. The tribute party they have that night proves it. The kids drink and dance and shine their phone flashlights. It is a very young thing to do. As Addy and Beth dance together and everyone drinks heavily there are a lot of tears but very little true understanding. For these kids playing at adulthood, life is tough until it isn’t. They think they know the monsters that lurk in the shadows. They have no idea sometimes those monsters never go away and sometimes they hide in plain sight.
Addy says to Beth “I don’t know why I drink so much?” It’s an easy answer, she is in constant competition with Beth. She has always been vulnerable to Beth who manipulates her into drinking too much and divulging information. Herizen Guardiola(Addy) continues to quietly hold the series together. She isn’t the flashiest actor. Her Addy isn’t asked to be. It is hard to softly emote her feelings surrounded by Coach and Beth and she has done so beautifully. Beth, on the other hand, is inciteful, charismatic, and smart. Marlo Kelly(Beth) was given the lion share of the work this week and she continued to deliver.
Prenaturally aware, Beth has seen things in her young life that have left scars. Her parents are neglectful at best and toxic at worst. She has experienced rape and horrific family events. It’s a great deal of trauma for anyone. For someone so young it is defining. It causes her to lash out. She is the most dangerous kind of vampire. She doesn’t just revel in other’s pain, she enjoys being the cause of it. Her clack white view of the world shapes who she is. Cheating is always wrong. It is not romantic and suicide is selfish. These are her life truths.
Beth recognizes power in Coach and needs to destroy the bond she has with Addy and the other squad members. This is a scab she will continue to pick at until someone breaks. Colette had a temporary meltdown. By the end of Dare Me Episode 9 Addy gives up some of her secrets. Creative camera tricks conveying the haze of intoxication are used to both show Addy’s mental state and emphasize the title of the episode. Armed with Addy’s secrets and Will’s family tragedy she will work to destroy Coach at all costs.
The investigation into Will’s death heats up as Beth starts putting the pieces together herself. It won’t be long before it all comes crashing down. Addy’s mother is canvassing the apartment looking for witnesses and has found one woman who knew about Will’s bloodied knuckles. The irony of her statement to Addy about the terrible things she sees each night is lost on them both. Addy was at Will’s crime scene and Beth was a victim of an assault. They both have had “sad, dark things” happen to them and both are barely surviving as a result even if Mom doesn’t know it.
Addy wants to be part of Coach Colette’s world. Little did she know how dangerous that would be. Colette led her right into the Fog of War. Coach French should have protected her but instead used her. The Fog of War is the lack of situational awareness that can arise from uncertain operations. Intelligence, surveillance, and practice can combat it some but it almost always remains to some degree. Beth is cutting through that fog with aggressive needling and carefully timed questioning.
Who killed Sarge Will is no closer to being answered. As Dare Me Episode 9 closed, all the major contenders are still in play. Kurtz freaked out as he watched Addy’s Mom interview neighbors making him look very suspicious. He also knew Will was aware of his rape. Lastly, someone had blood dripping down their uniform and that hasn’t been definitively answered yet. Beth has very little motive to kill Will but she had a gun. She is the least likely though as she seems hellbent on uncovering the truth and forcing Addy and Coach to come clean. Coach French had motive and opportunity and a steel spine. She had a lot to lose and he was a direct threat to that.
With only one episode left the answers will be coming fast. Let’s hope the finale lives up to the hype of all the flashbacks, and voiceovers. Catch up on all our coverage here while we await news on season two.
As the TV/Streaming 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’m 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.