Just finished episode two and….and…please hear me out on this….I liked it. Now I know there are inaccuracies. Jerry Lee Lewis learned to play piano before he would go out to clubs to see black musicians play. I’m not sure Sam Phillips actually said everything to B.B. King and his band while recording to him (my favorite part of the episode, regardless of accuracies I got chill bumps). And I’m totally not sure the Mr. Phillips was a pill popper. He probably was. Hell everyone took drugs back then…everyone takes drugs now.
This weeks edition starts with the aforementioned Jerry Lee Lewis (they did a great job of picking a guy that looks like he would marry his 14 year old cousin….I’m so sorry but I couldn’t do a full review without insulting someone). Jerry Lee goes sneaking into a club with Jimmy Swaggart. For those of you rockabilly types not from the U.S. he is one of the most well-known televangelist in history (more foreshadowing since Mr Lewis does have future issues with religion). When Jerry Lee says Jimmy is going to make more money than any of us, he isn’t lying. It’s the effect Gotham does or the Star Wars prequels would use. Its sort of a wink at the audience like they’re saying “hey, hey, get it. a little foreshadowing for you at home”. Now let me get this out-of-the-way. I’m from the south. Some might think the dialogue might be a pinch on the cheesy side when the young version of the killer is constantly referred to as Jerry Lee or Jerry Lee Lewis. In the south it is very common to refer to someone by their first and middle name. Also in lots of cases, the full name. Just had to get that out there.
We get another wink and a nudge in this episode as well with a young Johnny Cash bumping into a lady who will probably be his wife (its like Titanic, we know whats going to happen) and helps her up while saying “hello, I’m Johnny Cash”. After this episode I’m a little less annoyed by the actor and I’m no longer getting flashbacks to Walk the Line. Same can be said about Elvis (the 50s style high school setting looked so cool that I kind of hate myself for liking it so much). Speaking of the future king, we are treated to the drama of him entering a black (I’m not typing “colored”) church from the last episode. 50s southern racism stewed to a perfection. Does he go back? You’ll have to watch and see.
It is 2017 and you can’t do an 8 part miniseries in this day and age without a love triangle. We get that with founder Sam Philips, his wife, and his assistant Marion Keisker. This causes some drama and a pinch of suspense seeing Sam sneak back into his house in his underwear and said wifey wanting to talk to Miss Keisker herself later on.
I plan on cosplaying as Col Tom Parker. Once again a show stealing performance and from what I read I’m sure that Parker did absolutely everything he has done in this episode and more for his clients. I cannot wait to see him and Elvis finally cross paths. By the way Elvis does go back to the black church. And still no sign of Carl Perkins. In the trailer for the third part we get a sneak peek of Ike Turner. All possible Tina Turner jokes aside he had a large part in the early days of rock n roll. I hope to hear Rocket 88 later on.
Those were my thoughts on episode two. Agree? Disagree? Let me know in the comments! Feel free to share this on social media. And while you’re here go LIKE the official Rockabilly Nerd Facebook page HERE.