DISCLAIMER: This is a spoiler filled recap for episode 3 of The Terror: Infamy, ‘Gaman’. Viewer discretion is advised.
Welcome back! If you’re still on this recap journey with me that probably means you are loving The Terror: Infamy and you’re ready for more. I don’t blame you one bit. Last week things got real heavy as we saw executive order 9066 go into action. All American citizens of Japanese ancestry, and resident aliens from Japan, were forced from their homes on Terminal Island.
First, everyone was forced into temporary housing in the city, then into disgusting race horse stalls and, finally, into the internment camps. This is where Wilson Yoshida (James Saito), apparently under the control of the sinister Yuko (Kiki Sukezane), gets a hold of a gun and charges a group of guards, who eventually shoot him to death. This incident has Chester (Derek Mio) convinced that the paranormal shenanigans that have been going on have something to do with him. And he’s determined to figure out why.
As if Chester didn’t have enough on his plate, he finally spilled the beans to his Mother Asako (Naoko Mori) about Luz’s pregnancy, hatches a plan to go on the run with her but is quickly captured by the government. This results in both Chester and Luz being shipped back to the camp.
Meanwhile, my new favorite trio Henry Nakayama (Shingo Usami), Yamato-san (George Takei) and Hideo Furuya (Eiji Inoue) go Bakemono hunting. Instead of finding a ghost, they instead find a traitor walking among them. So they do the reasonable thing. Leave him for dead in the middle of a frozen lake that’s breaking. That’s stone cold, guys. Keep it up! *insert devil face emoji here*
This week we see quite a few developments. As the Terminal Islanders struggle with adjusting to their new surroundings, Chester searches for a way to provide for his family and for a very pregnant Luz (Cristina Rodlo), and to fend off the evil that he feels is following him. Henry reels from the trauma of his imprisonment. Asako (Naoko Mori) tries to deal with bad omens. And Amy (Miki Ishikawa) takes up a new job.
So let’s cut the chit chat! Let’s get on with our look at The Terror: Infamy’s new episode, ‘Gaman’!
So, this episode kicks off with an old western flick. And it’s the real deal, complete with a black and white screen, a bad guy rolling into town and a damsel in distress. The only “oddity” about this movie is that it’s dubbed in Japanese. This is clearly to appeal to everyone at the internment camps, who look like they’re having a movie night in the mess hall. At some point, just like during Mrs. Furuya’s (Yuki Morita) funeral, Chester has another lovely hallucination.
Instead of watching the characters have it out in the final battle, the cowboys are replaced with Yoshida-san and the guards shooting him down. Luckily this hallucination doesn’t last too long. As soon as it’s over, Chester exits to use the restroom. Later he catches up with Luz to walk her to her assigned bunk for curfew. This is where we see that Luz isn’t exactly popular among her new roommates. They laugh and call her names in their native tongue when she’s around. Clearly they don’t look too fondly to premarital sex.
After the opening credits we see everyone trying to find some normalcy in the worst possible scenario. The children are playing with each other, adults are conversing as they walk about the camp and Chester is snapping a few shots on his beloved camera. That is until Luz interrupts him so they can walk and talk, blissfully unaware that Yuko is watching them from afar. As is her prerogative at this point.
Next we catch up with Asako, Amy and Mrs. Yoshida (Hira Ambrosino) in the garden. They are hard at work as Asako celebrates the tiniest sign of life in the horrendous soil. It’s a little pepper. “Always a good omen,” Asako declares before taking a bite. This good omen turns out to be not so good when it’s revealed there is a maggot living in the pepper. Now that’s a bad omen if I’ve ever seen one. It looks like everyone is working, we see Chester and Walt Yoshida (Lee Shorten) doing their part when they are introduced to Major Bowen (C. Thomas Howell).
It’s established pretty quickly that Bowen is the head honcho of the camp and as kind of a jackass. Luckily, we don’t have to deal with him for too long as he drives off, and Chester and Walt mingle with fellow workers from San Francisco. One of them points out something off to the side. “Huh. Never though I’d see that.” It’s two Japanese men in American solider uniforms. “I heard they’re recruiting overseas translators.” Chester scoffs. “That’s rich. I thought we were supposed to be the enemy.” Apparently the test to become one of these translators is difficult. Guys that studied in Japan have even failed it. Either way, Chester finds the whole thing ridiculous “They put us in here and expect us to sign up? Screw that.”
Hm. Me thinks this is a set up for some good old fashioned foreshadowing. Perhaps Walt or Chester will be getting a new job soon? Maybe both?
In the next scene we stumble upon an almost wholesome sight. It’s the camp, beautifully light up by strings of light bulbs, jazzy piano music is playing as Asako and Henry- dressed very well- are slow dancing. Obviously it’s not real though. It’s a dream. We learn that when Asako is forced awake by Amy. Which we are immediately cool with when she informs Asako that “Henry-san, he’s here! At the camp.” And he’s not alone. Along with Yamato-san, Furuya and Henry are all the men that were torn away from their families by the hands of the government.
Asako is nearly brought to tears at the sight of her husband. Chester arrives too. This has the makings of a perfect homecoming, right? Well, it’s established pretty quickly something is off. What should be a tragic but revealing reunion becomes confirmation that the imprisonment really effected Henry. He appears anxious, detached from the situation, short tempered and slightly mistrusting of his family and the giant searchlight that canvases the camp. He seems to be suffering from PTSD.
If that wasn’t bad enough, we also learn that Henry has frostbite due to the horrific conditions of his imprisonment.
Frustrated by the whole thing Chester storms outside. After sneaking past the guards and climbing the ladder to the observation deck, Chester takes a chair and shatters one of the spotlights. That’s one way to vent out your frustrations. I just hope he doesn’t get caught later.
The next morning Henry wakes up pretty late. He learns of Yoshida-san’s death and expresses that he’s now less concerned about spirits. After his run in with the now dead Nick Okada (Kai Bradbury) Henry is worried about any spies that may be living among them. “Spies! You think they aren’t listening? Watching us? They were there. In the middle of nowhere!” I totally get where he’s coming from but it’s probably a good time to point out that hypervigilance is a common trait of PTSD. So that’s totally not helping Henry’s condition.
Just then Chester and Luz, armed with food and warm water, enter the room. Luz formally introduces herself to Henry. And she is met with some hostility. Understandably, of course. Chester retreats to the mess hall. This is where we see that nice young man from San Francisco again. He happily introduces himself to Amy as Ken Uehara (Christopher Naoki Lee). “If somebody finds love here… that’d be something.” Yamato-san whispers to Chester. Could love be in the air? Even in a place like the camps?
Yamato-san also expresses deep sadness over Yoshida-san’s death. Nobody was expecting Yoshida to “snap” like that. But Chester isn’t so sure. He confides in Yamato-san that something seemed off throughout the whole incident. And Yamato-san, being wise and powerful, instantly assumes it’s the work of a Bakemono. More specifically a Yurei.
Just then Furuya bursts through the door. He appears distressed, so naturally his son Toshiro (Alex Shimizu) hurries to help him. Almost instantly Furuya wraps his hands tightly around Toshiro’s neck while chanting “The swallows,” in a trance like droll. No shock that he’s quickly ripped away from Toshiro and dragged out of the mess hall. Everyone is trying to settle down from the commotion. All while Chester and Yamato-san exchange a look. A knowing look. More Yurei madness?
Next we take a quick break to catch up with Amy. She’s looking pretty miserable as her Mother pretty much forces her into an interview with Major Bowen as a secretary. Amy is indifferent to the whole thing but plays along. And she ends up getting the position right away. Perhaps she could use this new position to sneak some top secret intel?
In the next scene, Chester stealthily sneaks into the jail where Furuya is currently being held, in hand a bottle of homemade saké. After making sure Toshiro is okay, Furuya drinks a good portion of the saké before explaining what came over him in the mess hall. “It wasn’t me. Tell him it wasn’t me! I felt something inside of me…it’s with me where ever I go.” Oh yeah. Totally a Yurei.
This late night rendezvous is cut short when Chester hears guards approaching the jail. As he’s leaving Chester has another one of his lovely hallucinations. Is…is he just gonna keep these hallucinations to himself? I feel like that’s a thing that should be brought up. But what do I know?
The next day Chester gets word that Luz is in the infirmity. He rushes there to find Luz irritated but otherwise fine. She apparently fell and wants the doctor to be sure the baby is fine. Which it is, thank goodness. Luz insists that it was just an accident, a mix of her losing her footing and the wind, though Chester doesn’t seem so convinced. Neither am I. Could this be Yuko’s handy work? We haven’t seen her too much this episode.
Don’t worry that doesn’t last long. Later that night Furuya is dragged out of his cell into the nearby woods by a guard. A guard that has a familiar funny walk. This is when Yuko appears. She asks Furuya the same question from the last epsiode. “Do you remember me?” This time Furuya confesses that he does. How can this be? “That night do you remember what you said to me? You said I was exquisite.”
Yuko then tosses Furuya on the ground as he pleads for his life. He explains that he was foolish about…what? What night are they talking about? If Yuko is a Yurei then how can a regular person like Furuya know her? Unless she hasn’t been a Yurei for very long. Perhaps, when she was still a mortal woman, he knew Yuko somehow. And based on the way they are talking? It gives the impression that Furuya may have had something to do with her death.
Yuko then really steps up the gore factor because why not? She leans down to rip out Furuya’s tongue with her teeth, resulting him to choke on his own blood. Holy. Crap. His body is discovered the next morning by none other than a small child chasing a baseball. And that’s only after said child gets a glance at Yuko just chilling out in the woods. Talk about traumatizing.
The details of a mysterious woman in the woods gets to Chester quick. Now he’s convinced this evil is after him. The way he sees it there are far too many tragedies going on. The deaths, Furuya’s instant blinding, Chester’s visions, Luz’s mysterious fall. They can’t all just be coincidences. He’s convinced if he leaves the camp then the evil will follow and only effect him. A sound plan if I’ve ever heard one. How’s he gonna do it though? Well, remember that new translation job the Army is offering? Mmhmm.
Chester finds his footing pretty quickly in the interview for the position. He gets the job much to the dismay of Luz. She feels Chester is abandoning her in the middle of her pregnancy. She’s worried for his safety and prefer that he’d stay. Though Chester manages to convince her he’ll be okay. “A translator? I won’t see any combat.” The two share a slow dance, Luz’s only exchange for letting him go, while Yuko watches nearby.
Henry doesn’t react well to the news either. “I sacrificed so much for you and this is how you repay it? By leaving your family so you can run off and be a spy?” For the first time Henry opens up about his imprisonment. “They beat me. They left me in the cold and you join them?!” Chester tries to reason with him by explaining that once America wins the war then things will be better. People won’t look at the Japanese like the enemy and they can get back to their normal lives. But Henry isn’t having it. Any ounce of patriotism he had is gone. Not that anyone can blame him.
When it comes time for Chester to go he says his heartfelt goodbyes. He even leaves Luz with a new handmade dress, “In case you get sick of wearing my shirts.” And it only cost him his precious camera. What a sweetheart.
Later, Luz confides in Asako that she wants to see a different doctor. There isn’t one though Asako has heard whispers of a midwife. She lives in the new barracks, north of the guard tower. So Luz decides to give her a try. The check up seems to be going well. She’s performing the examination while humming a calming tune.
The midwife gives Luz the confirmation that the baby is just fine. Everything is totally calm and chill. Until the camera finally pans to the midwife’s face. It’s Yuko’s face. Oh no. I have a very bad feeling about this.
What we know so far/ thoughts:
- Goodness me what an episode! Another murder and a ghost lady nursing small children? I am anxious for everyone. Literally everyone in this show.
- Okay so, if Chester left the camp but Yuko still remains there, does that mean his plan isn’t working? The whole point of him leaving was to take her with him, could she be sticking around to cause a bit more mischief? Then to finish Chester off? Or was she never after Chester to begin with?
- And how will Chester be treated in the Army? While he is working for the U.S. that doesn’t mean his fellow, caucasian soldiers will take too nicely to him. Not right away.
- I can’t wait to hear all about Yuko and Furuya’s bizarre history. Seriously what is the deal with that?
Be sure to check back next week. Maybe our plethora of questions will be answered in next week’s episode. The Terror: Infamy airs Mondays at 9pm on your AMC affiliate.