Life is full of ups and downs, lefts and rights, and B’s and A’s. This week’s installment of HBO’s Room 104 discusses how like video games, life is all about leveling up and fighting for survival. “The Night Babby Died” is one of the saddest, yet simplest plots of an overall offbeat series. The tenth episode of the fourth season focuses on the difficulties of resurrecting what has been lost through time.
Director Jenee LaMarque co-wrote “The Night Babby Died” with Julian Wass. The story centers around childhood friends Bruce and Abby reuniting after decades. Abby has plans to take Bruce to dinner, but his plan is to break out the old Nintendo and play a game of Crowning Glory II, a game they played obsessively as children. Crowning Glory II, which looks very much like The Legend of Zelda, is a one player game that will kill off your player and leave them permanently dead. The night takes a turn as Abby and Bruce play a game with the intent of restoring life to their old character.
The writing is particularly masterful in this episode. There is an excellent dynamic between the characters and the story of their backgrounds is delivered very naturally in a simple yet effective manner. Abby, played by Lily Gladstone, and Bruce, played by Leonardo Nam give amazing performances. The emotion displayed by both is powerful and draws the audience into their turmoil.
“The Night Babby Died” is about a night of resurrections. Can lost friendships be saved? How strong is the power of nostalgia? Heartfelt and sincere, “The Night Babby Died” will resonate with anyone who has ever lost a friend.
Room 104 airs Friday nights at 11:00 pm on HBO.