Servant: “Cake” Review

After what was arguably the most intense and brutal episode of Servant thus far, “Cake” takes a step back from the intensity, but in some ways it’s even more unsettling and creepy in different ways.  All the while, the plot picks up the pace and sets up a thrilling cliffhanger

(Spoilers Ahead – You’ve Been Warned)

Dorothy Jekyll and Mrs. Hyde
To say that Dorothy went too far last episode would be a huge understatement.  Between physically attacking Leanne every night at 2:00am, and the whole attempted murder, buried alive stunt, she’s gotten about as brutal as one can get.

She’s almost scarier like this because it seems like she might snap at any moment.

Which is why it’s all the more unsettling when Dorothy is suddenly pleasant and invites Leanna downstairs for breakfast.  She even has Tobe over so that Leanne can have a friendly face, and what follows is the most awkward breakfast in history.

On the one hand, Dorothy seems to have learned her lesson that the violent interrogation approach wasn’t getting anywhere.  And she might get the information she wants by killing Leanne with kindness.  However, after already taking the former approach, it does create challenges for the latter.

The episode does a good job of showing how the trio reacts and responds to all the trauma from last week’s episode.  Dorothy does her complete 180 personality shift, Sean still seems disturbed by what his wife did, and Leanne remains strong and composed.  She’s been through a lot, but given her cultish upbringing, she’s clearly very resilient.

She doesn’t give in or appear grateful during breakfast, which is a tactic hostages will use to remind their captor that they’re there against their will.

This is also the first time we’ve seen Tobe since he abducted Leanne and brought her to their home.  And it’s a shame we didn’t get more of his reaction to doing that.  In this episode, he just sort of seems to go along with and doesn’t seem very bothered.

Granted, he wasn’t privy to the abuse Dorothy subjected Leanne to, but for an ordinary person, it’s kind of disturbing how not disturbed he is that he kidnapped an 18 year old girl.  It’s one thing to be a good employee/assistant to your boss, it’s another thing entirely if your boss’ wife asks you to commit a felony, and you go along with it.

Now to be fair, Dorothy did threaten Tobe that if he didn’t cooperate, she’d call the police and frame him for drugging Leanne.  Even so, he should be way more bothered by all this.

Ransom Gone Wrong
While Sean and Dorothy loosen up the restrictions on Leanne and allow her to hang out with Tobe baking, they try to make contact again to pay the ransom to get Jericho back.  With the help of Roscoe, they go to the mall, but something goes wrong, and results with Leanne’s creepy Uncle George coming back home with Sean and Dorothy, demanding to know where Leanne is.

He’s probably not too happy about that fact that they kidnapped her, but given what happened with “Jericho”, he doesn’t really have much room to talk.

Either way, he’s a fascinating character that we can never truly get enough of.

On the one hand, it would have been interesting to see how things played out at the mall.  However, in keeping in line with the rest of the series, the vast majority of scenes take place in the house.

This whole series has always acted out much like a stage play, with the house as the central location and the characterization and performances being the focus.  It works well for tense episodes like last week, but does leave something to be wanted when we don’t get to see what happened at the mall.

Either way, Leanne’s hostage situation seems to be coming to an end, unless Dorothy has some scheme to keep George prisoner as well, but if that’s the case, they’re really going to need a good defense lawyer for all these felonies adding up!

What did you think of this episode?  What do you hope to see next week?  Let us know in the comments!

The Servant is streaming exclusively on Apple TV+

For more reviews, rankings, lists, and other fun horror/sci-fi/fantasy content, follow Halloween Year-Round on FacebookTwitter, and YouTube!

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