Lovecraft Country Pays Emotional Tribute to Emmett Till

Tonight's Lovecraft Country episode, "Jig-A-Bobo," opened with a huge crowd of well-dressed people waiting to enter a funeral on the hottest day of the year. Atticus (Jonathan Majors), Leti (Jurnee Smollett), Ruby (Wunmi Mosaku), and Dee (Jada Harris) are all in the crowd with Dee appearing especially emotional. It's quickly revealed that they are waiting to say goodbye to Emmett Till. In the context of the story, he was friends with Dee, but he was also a real-life child who was brutally murdered at age 14 back in 1955.

Till was from Chicago but was visiting family in Mississippi when he was accused of merely whistling at a white woman. Family members of the woman later abducted Till and beat him before shooting him and leaving his body in the Tallahatchie River. Much like on the HBO series, tens of thousands of people lined the streets of Chicago to view Emmett Till's body and later attend his funeral. Till's mother decided on an open casket in order for people to see the damage that was done to him.

During the episode, Ruby returns home to Christina/William (Abbey Lee/Jordan Patrick Smith) and after sleeping with the latter, she confronts the former about not caring about Till's death. In an emotional scene, she cries for Christina to have some feeling about the young boy who was murdered and expresses her exhaustion over watching Black people nonsensically die over and over. It was a painful moment that tragically mirrors what's going on in the world today. While they obviously didn't know this at the time of filming, the verdict in the Breonna Taylor case was delivered exactly 65 years after the murderers of Till were acquitted.

During her quest for immortality, we later see Christina paying men to brutally kill her in the same way that Till died. She survived the encounter, which means she's well on her way to meeting her goal. However, we have to wonder if her choice of death was related to Ruby's pleas. She did admit to Ruby that she didn't care about Till, but a part of us is hoping Christina will come out on the side of good by the end of the season.

The episode also follows Dee after she leaves the funeral crowd, clearly devastated over the loss of her friend, and worried about the fate of her mother. She encounters police officers who are looking for Hippolyta (Aunjanue Ellis) and they put a curse on her. For the remainder of the episode, Dee is followed by horrifying demon-like children. She sets a trap for them in the end, but her Uncle Montrose (Michael K. Williams) finds her fighting the air (only she can see the monsters) and while he attempts to calm her down, the demons start to tear her apart. The episode ends without revealing her fate.


How did you feel about the episode's connection to Emmett Till? Tell us in the comments.

Lovecraft Country airs Sundays at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO and is available to stream on HBO Max.