Season Three of Channel Zero brings a new flavor to the table in a creepypasta tale that will curb any hunger pains you have. “Butcher’s Block”, based on Kerry Hammond’s creepypasta “Search and Rescue Woods”, centers around two sisters who move to a new city and find out quickly that everything isn’t as it seems in Butcher’s Block. Creator Nick Antosca returns as executive producer, showrunner and writer for the third installment along with director Arkasha Stevenson. “Butcher’s Block” stars Holland Roden (“Teen Wolf”), Olivia Luccardi (“The Deuce”), Krisha Fairchild (Krisha), and Rutger Hauer (Blade Runner).
Since season one of Channel Zero, I have been hooked as each installment has elicited a different reaction and emotion from me. As I fan of creepypasta’s, I’m constantly blown away by the imagery and creativity that the creators use in their translation of the story into this show, and “Butcher’s Block” is no different. Where “Candle Cove” (Season 1) left me feeling uneasy and “No-End House” (Season 2) left me feeling emotional, “Butcher’s Block” has left me feeling disturbed and somewhat terrified.
“Butcher’s Block” introduces us to sisters Zoe (Roden) and Alice (Luccardi) Woods. After suffering a family trauma, and dealing with Zoe’s schizophrenia, Alice moves herself and her sister to a new city to start over. As they settle into their new lives, Alice starts to learn about the history surrounding Butcher’s Block, most notably that of Mr. Peach (Hauer). Following a mysterious disappearance, along with Zoe’s erratic behavior and insistence that there is a staircase in the woods, Alice, along with her landlord Louise Lispector (Fairchild), go forth in search of the truth about the missing Peach family.
As like all the previous seasons, “Butcher’s Block” is just as visually arresting as one would expect. Whether it be staircases that lead to nothing, pops of red colors, or psychedelic creations that will haunt your dreams for days afterwards, “Butcher’s Block” goes full force on all visual fronts. In terms of story, I’m enjoying what the overall theme is going for in this season. A mashup of cannibalism and mental illness is executed in such a way that it’s hard not to feel for Zoe. As someone who suffers from depression on a daily basis, I appreciate how mental illness is becoming a more talked about subject in a way that is to remind people that you don’t need to feel ashamed because you suffer from a chemical imbalance.
What really sells the story though is the acting from all our main leads. The chemistry between Zoe and Alice is palpable and you can feel Alice’s struggle in trying to control Zoe’s outbursts. Having just watched Blade Runner for the first time, it was nice to see Rutger Hauer in the role of Mr. Peach. It’s quite apparent that there is something terrifyingly off about him, but he also comes across as a grandfather figure. Then there is Louise Lispector, played by the insanely talented Krisha Fairchild. Her no-nonsense attitude along with her confidence instantly made her character one of my favorites of not only the season, but the entire series.
Overall, “Butcher’s Block” is a terrifying trip through mental illness and loss, with the added touch of a supernatural element. The visuals are breathtaking and the many subtexts throughout the show will keep you theorizing as to what is happening up until the final frame. “Butcher’s Block” has easily become one of my favorites of the Channel Zero installments and one that I can’t wait to talk about with other fans of the show. Make sure to check out the season premiere when it arrives on SyFy February 7th at 10/9c.
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