Updated: Jan 5, 2021
In what can only be described as a Christmas Miracle, HBO Max finally provided an official look at The Nevers in a sizzle reel that they released hyping their 2021 line-up for both their streaming platform and HBO proper. Included were a few blink-and-you'll-miss-it frames from The Nevers, and they were glorious, friends. So without further ado, let's dive in and analyze the crap out of them, shall we?
#1 Umbrella Wielding
In the first shot, we see Penance Adair and Amalia True (Ann Skelly and Laura Donnelly) marching towards something off-camera, umbrellas in hand. I suggested that one of Amalia's weapons of choice might be the umbrella in a previous blog post. While filming was underway, Donnelly replied to a picture that Ann shared of Amy Manson, Skelly and Donnelly posing together (the latter posing with an umbrella), saying, "He didn't get my umbrella-wielding. All that training...". What's more, from the late 1800s through the early 1900s, Victorian umbrella defense was quite popular.
#2 Falling To Her Death
In this beautifully framed shot, we see an unidentified woman stepping off a ledge and presumably falling to her death. This shot is emotionally gripping; she steps off without hesitation, with no second thoughts. One can only imagine why she's chosen death over life. What has this character had to endure? Perhaps she's one of the Turned, aka Touched, who's overwhelmed by her baffling new powers and decides that death is preferable. Has she been beaten down by society for her unusual abilities? Was she a tortured captive of Dr. Edmund Hague? Unless she sprouts wings or gets carried away from someone or something off-camera, she likely falls to her death. I'm very interested in seeing the lead up to this scene.
#3 Amalia True
Next, we see our bad-ass protagonist Amalia True. Since learning of her casting, I've gone back and watched Donnelly in her other roles and quickly became a fan; she's an impressive actress! She brings intensity and authenticity to every role that she plays, and I can not wait to see her tackle this role. Also, you'll be hard-pressed to find anyone who can serve up resting bitch face as well as Donnelly, and that's important if you want to sell yourself as a superhero, right?
In this shot, we see Amalia standing before a raging fire in a pair of glasses (a creation courtesy of Penance Adair?) that seem to adjust to their surroundings. We also hear True speak for the first time, revealing at least one of her abilities: "I see things that aren't there. Glimpses of the future." In a previous post, did I list precognition or "future vision" as one of the powers that I'd like to see in the series? Yes. Yes, I did.
In the longest frame, we see Penance Adair appearing slightly distressed while releasing a gadget that finds its way towards a woman before seeming to detonate. The shot is quick, but there seems to be a third person in the picture as well. The two may be engaged in a brawl or are possibly a team ambushing Penance, so she unleashes her gadget in an attempt to neutralize them. Penance is a brilliant inventor, so it's likely that she created the little gizmo that she lets loose.
This character has a lot of growth potential. In an interview on the Fail Harder Podcast, Skelly said, "My character is a lot closer to me than any of the other ones have been. I say funny things, and I don't cry, and I don't have a dark, troubled past, and it's kind of cool!" The character is ripe for growth; in a world where the Touched are shunned for their abnormal abilities, how long can her character stay optimistic before becoming contemptuous of society? We have another remarkable actress with Ann Skelly and I'm really looking forward to seeing her in this role.
Side-note, I think we've all been assuming that Penance's turn is her genius for invention. But she may be naturally gifted, and her newfound ability is something that hasn't been revealed to us yet.
#5 Run, baby, run
Here we have a quick shot of a woman running through what looks to be an underground passageway before being overwhelmed by an explosion, sending her into a pile of rubble. Might she too be an escaped captive of Dr. Hague's?
#6 Let It Burn
Next, we're shown a shot of Annie Carbey, played by the brilliant Rochelle Neil (we're three for three with great actors!), surrounded by embers and flames. This may be the same fire scene that we saw with Amalia. We know that Carbey can control fire, but can she also produce it out of thin air? Did she start the blaze, or is she helping to keep it under control while Amalia does some investigating? Or perhaps, Carbey was already at the scene of the blaze and Amalia, being able to see glimpses of the future, foresaw this event and went there to recruit Carbey to the cause. I'm excited to see her in action!
#7 Let's Finish This
It appears these shots are all taken from the same episode (likely episode one), as Amalia is wearing the same outfit as in the first shot with Penance. Here, Amalia seems to be in the midst of a fight as we see her in an I'm down but not out, and oh yeah, you're about to get your butt kicked stance. I'm looking forward to seeing what Joss and the Game of Thrones stunt team have come up with for The Nevers!
What did you think of these first few images? Do you have theories of your own? Let us know!