HBO is doing something beautifully weird today for its cult show about a cult The Third Day. It's hosting a 12-hour livestream from the show's island of Osea. The livestream features the village as it goes about preparing for a celebration to welcome the Autumn solstice. It is dull, weird, and creepy at the same time as the townsfolk follow an apocalyptic pagan belief, which effectively makes them a cult.
The show stars Jude Law as Sam, a man from the Mainland mourning the death of his son who stumbles upon the town. As he slowly discovers how weird it all is, he finds he can't leave. The townsfolk are alternately welcoming and suspicious, and some of them actively try to kill him, as towns made of weird cults are wont to do. Emily Watson and Paddy Considine play a couple who run the local inn who may or may not be on his side. The first three episodes of the series follow Sam's attempts to escape the island before the second three episodes follow Naomi Harris as a mother on vacation with her kids who stumbles upon the town and, well, even more hijinks ensue.
As HBO's official press release announced:
"On Saturday, October 3, THE THIRD DAY will feature a special live theatrical event "Autumn" to enhance viewers' experience of this six-episode limited series. HBO audiences will be able to watch this 12-hour event unfold on HBO's Facebook page with streaming beginning at 1:30am PT/4:30am ET. After the initial broadcast, viewers will be able to replay the event in its entirety on HBO's Facebook page.
For viewers who seek more of THE THIRD DAY, "Autumn" will allow them to be immersed in the world of the show on the island of Osea. A unique live event broadcast online, "Autumn" serves as a bridge between the three episodes of "Summer" and the three episodes of "Winter" while not being requisite for enjoying the limited series. Featuring members of The Third Day cast including Jude Law and Katherine Waterston, viewers will follow the events of a single day in real time. Florence Welch will also feature in an acting role.
Capturing events live and in one continuous take, this cinematic broadcast will invite viewers deeper into the mysterious and suspenseful world of THE THIRD DAY, and blur and distort the lines between what's real and what's not. It is created by theatrical innovators Punchdrunk and co-directed by founder and artistic director of Punchdrunk, Felix Barrett, and "Summer" director Marc Munden, with Sky and Punchdrunk producing."
During the course of the previous 8 hours, the townsfolk have been going about in character preparing for the ritual that will take place tonight. They sat around drinking, eating. Some people are wearing creepy, crude masks. At some point, a town elder made a speech. Law seems to be buried in a crude coffin somewhere. Occasionally there's a cut to a weird out-of-context close-up. It's implied they might be sacrificing Law at the climax of the celebrations. As of this writing, the stream is entering its final hours and it's grown dark in Osea. The reveries have begun. Drunken celebrations by a bonfire are underway. There's a vibe about the whole thing, a bit of Burning Man, a bit of Midsommar, it's like if The Wicker Man was a live-streamed reality TV show.
The Third Day is currently on HBO and HBO Max.