Leave it to Quibi’s The Stranger to throw a curveball as we’re preparing to wind down what’s when a terrifying, psychological thriller of a story where out heroine is being hunted down by a maniac.
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I think that this entire thing might be a hallucination.
This episode was easily the least creepy hour of this entire series, but it left me doubting everything. As it was probably intended to.
After Clare and JJ escape the underground club — and away from Carl E — they find salvation at a rundown hotel, where there’s no cable and no WiFi so the bastard can’t catch them.
JJ manages to lockdown an affordable lawyer that’s willing to take their case on, she just needs their names. They lay down for a moment — a stress-free moment where they seem to grow a little closer. JJ gave her a burner phone with his number inside — and a tracker, just in case.
“Just in case… I lose you. I can always find you.”
In a terrifying, creepy movie, that was the sweetest thing I’ve heard, and I reacted accordingly. As did Clare, who held his hand as they lay back to back.
They’re spooning when they wake up a little while later, as JJ gets a call back from the lawyer, she tells him she can’t take their case. Because Clare Johnson — yes, from Kansas — has done this before.
I’m sorry what? What the hell does that mean?
Apparently, when she was in high school, she accused her male teacher of stalking her, but it turns out she was lying. Which explains Clare’s mother’s reaction upon hearing that Clare said she was being hunted down with someone trying to kill her.
Is Clare hallucinating this whole damn thing?
JJ certainly believes so, and I don’t blame him. He just met this girl a few hours ago, and he’s suddenly in legal trouble and helping her escape a psycho that he’s never even seen.
And I hadn’t thought about that much until right now. It’s true. JJ hasn’t seen Carl E. Sure, he’s been in some creepy situations with Clare, but he’s never seen his face. I’d thought for sure he saw Carl E on the train, but he hadn’t.
There are situations where it would make sense that Clare is hallucinating. The police officer, for example. We didn’t see Clare shoot the tires of the motorcycle, like she said we did. Although, we heard the gunshots. But we do know that the cop didn’t survive — so maybe she shot the cop?
Then again, there’s the stabbing in a tent with a crowded area of people — an area that she didn’t go near — where it doesn’t make sense.
But everything she’s been through, it’d be easy to believe that she was hallucinating. She crashed the car herself, she imagined getting choked out in an elevator. Not to mention, Carl E has been hot on her trail — the entire time. Almost as if he’s right behind her — literally — every step of the way. He’s like 1,000 steps ahead of her to the point it’s scary.
Although, maybe Carl E already knows this. Maybe he knows people will think she’s crazy — because this has happened before. It would be easy to make people believe so. But then again, Carl E could be a figment of her imagination, as she’s the only one that’s seen him.
Suddenly, Clare is looking suspicious as hell. So what’s the truth? Is there really a psychopath that’s trying to kill her, or is Clare imagining the whole thing and responding accordingly?
Honestly, I don’t know what to believe. And I’m pretty sure that’s the point. With just four episodes left, we’ll get answers soon enough.
The Stranger airs new episodes weekdays on Quibi.