The Analysis Of Gillian Flynn's Novel "Sharp Objects"

Categories: Novel

Spoiler Warning- major spoilers ahead.Once again we are presented with an adaptation of Gillian Flynn's masterpiece - her debut novel, Sharp Objects. If her name sounds familiar it is because she wrote the highly acclaimed book "Gone Girl" which was later adapted for a movie of the same name in 2014, starring Ben Affleck,Rosamund Pike,Neil Patrick Harris etc. Gillian's fans were not let down as they watched the season finale of the eight part, mystery/ thriller that aired on HBO on the 26th of August 2018, starring Amy Adams (Giselle from Enchanted) ,Chris Messina (Danny Castellano from the Mindy Project), Patricia Clarkson and Eliza Scanlen etc.

Sharp Objects is essentially a story about a dysfunctional family, mostly centered around the relationship between a mother- Adora (Patricia Clarkson) and her two daughters; the teenager - Amma (Eliza Scanlen) who leads a double life as an acquiescing daughter and a roam-around-town hooligan, and the estranged middle-aged daughter Camille (Amy Adams) who juggles between being an alcoholic and a newspaper reporter.

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There was also a third, middle daughter; Marian, but it is revealed early on that she has died.When Camille is sent to write a captivating article about a recent case of a missing girl in her hometown- Wind Gap, she comes face to face with ghosts from her past...As more mutilated bodies of young girls turn up in plain sight, Camille joins forces with Detective Willis (Chris Messina) to fish out possible suspects and prevent further killings.

The show is filmed in an eerie dreamlike state, with flashbacks that show us a glimpse into Camille's self-harming past and the tumultuous relationship she had with her mother growing up.

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In the flashbacks her younger sister, Marian is portrayed as a latchkey kid that is a mere shadow in the background as she is constantly ill and coddled by their mother, while Amma has not yet been born.Their mother is shown as suffering from numerous "episodes" throughout the show, which she often uses as a scapegoat to justify her toxic and distant behaviour. So it comes as no surprise when it is later revealed in episode seven that she has Munchausen syndrome by proxy and was responsible for the death of her daughter Marian. That revelation finally leads Camille to accept the dark truth that has been gnawing on her insides ever since she was young, and makes her finally wonder if her mother is capable of killing others whom she knew? But if you thought Adora was the serial killer, then you are oh, so wrong...

In a season finale that left viewers reeling in surprise when crucial instances were revealed after the end credits rolled (a genius idea to exclusively cater to the audience that was actually invested in the show), it was revealed that sweet, darling Amma(accompanied by her friends) was the deranged killer, killing unsuspecting teenage girls and using their teeth to line the floors of her doll house (talk about a deranged fascination with trophies from your victims...).

This was such an interesting and well-directed show. The way it is filmed you can almost feel the clammy oppressive atmosphere of Wind Gap, and the unnatural good-natured passive aggressiveness of its inhabitants.The acting was phenomenal throughout, and I absolutely loved how Patricia Clarkson flawlessly played Adora, with her pristine hair and genteel outlook on life, all the while hiding a notorious past. Moreover, we can also see her twisted love for her child, as she tries to take the fall for Amma and tries to keep her away from Camille's prying.The reveal about Amma was unexpected and since it was revealed in such an unconventional way, most people didn't wait to watch till the end and failed to understand the plot properly. Her motivations for killing her victims mainly revolved around the attention her mother was paying to the other girls, and later the attention Camille was paying to May.

Finally, Amy Adams portrayal as the unglamorous Camille unsettled many, mostly because of the constant drinking. However, that detail of her character made the story more believable since that makes her an unreliable narrator and we can't be too sure if she's as innocent as she thinks she is (don't worry. She was totally innocent). At this point in time, a second season has not been confirmed yet, mostly because Amy Adams is not interested in returning due to the 'dark' nature of the show - 'which made her lose sleep and loathe herself'. However, one of the producers was quoted as saying "never, say never", which has left fans feeling hopeful for a new season in the future.

Updated: Feb 22, 2024
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The Analysis Of Gillian Flynn's Novel "Sharp Objects". (2024, Feb 13). Retrieved from

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