A New Lovecraft Country Trailer Reveals Monsters, Magic, and Mayhem

Like most things in Lovecraft Country, that does not look friendly.
Like most things in Lovecraft Country, that does not look friendly.
Screenshot: HBO
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We’ve gotten a couple of glimpses at Jordan Peele, J.J. Abrams, and Misha Green’s upcoming HBO adaptation of Matt Ruff’s Lovecraft Country. But today, ahead of tomorrow’s virtual San Diego Comic-Con panel: a full, and fully eerie, trailer for the much-anticipated series.

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And it’s fantastic.

As fans of the book already know, Lovecraft Country is set in Jim Crow-era America and follows Atticus Black (Jonathan Majors) as he navigates both rampant racism and supernatural horrors on a road trip (joined by Courtney B. Vance as his uncle and Jurnee Smollet-Bell as his longtime friend) to track down his father (Michael Kenneth Williams). This quest also digs into Atticus’ complicated family background, involving a sinister cult, the mysteries of the universe, and some very powerful magical forces.

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This trailer looks like the series will capture all the wonder and terror of the book with some added elements, too—and now we really can’t wait to feast our eyes on this one. Fortunately, the wait’s not long now: Lovecraft Country hits HBO on August 16.


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DISCUSSION

2lines1shape
2lines1shape

It’s sort of amusing to try and figure out what Lovecraft was being racist about based on his stories. “Evil gatherings of gibbering, subhuman mongrels slavering around demonic totems” are probably black church picnics. “The unholy wailing and shrieking of the denizens of the underworld” is probably jazz. The “Innsmouth Look” might be him describing Chinese people. “Cthulhu” is probably how he heard “hula.” The Old Ones: Catholics, I dunno.

I don’t think there’s a better way to understand how the mind of a racist works than to read Lovecraft and remember all the monsters are just people.