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With 'Wolf Creek,' the Bad Guy May Have Met His Match
October 14, 2016  | By David Hinckley  | 1 comment

Looking for a way to put some focus into the life of your indifferent teenager, the one who always seems vaguely exasperated and wants you mostly just to leave her alone?

Wolf Creek, which premieres at 10 p.m. ET Friday on the Pop channel, has a solution.

Have a crazed psychopathic serial killer slaughter the rest of her family and leave her for dead.

It’s amazing, it turns out, how quickly that gives focus, purpose, and meaning to your teenager’s life.

The teenager in Wolf Creek is Eve Thorogood (Lucy Fry, top), whom we first meet as her American family is tooling around rural Australia on a vacation adventure.

By random chance, as they settle into a remote campsite, the family meets Mick Taylor (John Jarratt, below left). Not to be confused with the former Rolling Stones guitarist, this Mick Taylor quickly evolves from a little edgy to seriously deranged.

Truth is, we viewers know from the moment we see him that he’s not the sort of guy anyone should invite to a cookout. But then, the whole horror/thriller story industry would collapse if generations of victims had not been a little too trusting.

Taylor cements his villain cred by deriving noticeable pleasure from butchering the Thorogood family. Unfortunately for him, he’s not completely thorough and Eve survives his attack by playing dead.

She’s taken to a hospital, where she is interviewed by Detective Sullivan Hill (Dustin Clare, below left). Since the initial police theory is that the campfire deaths were a murder-suicide perpetrated by Eve’s father, and Eve knows differently, she and Detective Hill aren’t immediately on the same page.

This disconnect intensifies when a recovered Eve drops into Hill’s office at the police station and appropriates his files on the case.

Beyond the theft of government materials, this also signals that Eve has decided not to return to the States. Rather, she will hang around Australia to see if she can implement some frontier justice herself.

Wolf Creek has a fairly large number of people floating in and out, but the core of the story is the one-on-one, the psychopath against the fully engaged teenager.

Despite Detective Hill’s best efforts, it quickly becomes a game with no discernible rules.

Crazed killers and revenge-minded victims are a staple of TV and movie entertainment, of course, and Wolf Creek will be even more familiar because the story has already been made into a movie and a sequel. Jarratt also played Mick Taylor in those.

The TV series will run six episodes, so it gets a little more time to stretch things out.

It uses that time well, adding tense subplots while efficiently setting up good guys and bad guys and tracing Eve’s growth from indifferent teenager to skilled vigilante.

If you’re looking to scare up a good thriller, give Mick and Eve a shot.

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Jim Rhoads
I thought the first episode looked promising. It's well-acted and produced. I saw the movie and it was harrowing and visceral, so I suspect this will have some of those same aspects.
Oct 19, 2016   |  Reply
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