A Haven of Troubles


“Tagline: It takes a village to hide a secret”

I’ve been watching a TV series from the Syfy channel called – Haven.

It’s a quirky show. I love quirky shows.

Warehouse 13. I thought was awful when I first watched it, then I watched it again and realised the things I thought were awful about it were actually charming, perhaps a magic gadget influenced my change of perspective.
Fringe. The scientist is mad and dopey, the heroine is tough and kind, and the Observers are a mess and keep messing up everything they try to fix, and I adore alternate realities. Memories are alternate realities, and they change when you change. It is like a ripple effect. Have you ever noticed that?

Eureka. It was very amusing, I particularly liked the bunker house which was rather temperamental and a bit overprotective. The locals were all geniuses who regularly stepped over the line into insanity causing havoc. I love a bit of havoc, it loosens the grip of rigid order.

I used to enjoy watching Lost Girl. The Fey, both Light and Dark are very entertaining, especially their superiority complex in regards to ordinary humans because they are magic and special, yet they fail to see that other than having strange abilities, their behaviour is very human. However there is too much sex in the show. I’m not a prude, I just don’t find actors faking sex interesting, it breaks the momentum of the story, snaps me out of the trance of fantasy and reminds me that I’m watching TV. My mind switches modes.

One of the reasons I love watching television is because of the trance it puts me in. It is not escapism per se. Occasionally it is, and I am seeking a break, a time out from my reality. However mostly it helps me to access a level of thought, an almost meditative state, which helps me to view my reality from a different perspective. I solve a lot of my problems while in a TV trance, because of the thought journeys which certain aspects of the shows trigger.

“Claire: It’s not stupid. It’s regressive hypnotherapy and I blew three days on the web trying to figure it out.”

Haven, very loosely based on a Stephen King novel, is a tale about a town where most of the inhabitants have ‘Troubles’, powers of an unusual and often fatal kind, for others mostly but sometimes for themselves too, which are brought on by a traumatic event in the Troubled person’s life. The Troubled often think they are ordinary until their latent ability is triggered, they are not always aware of what they can do and have a hard time accepting that it is their doing. A few of the Troubles are less fatal, one woman, whose overwhelming envy at the wedding of a friend triggered her Trouble, turns all her food into delicious cake which she can’t resist eating. Most of the Troubles are more serious, one man’s sweat is toxic to anyone who touches him.

What I find most interesting about the story of Haven is the psychology of human nature woven into it. The writers have a keen sense of observation, and an understanding of the complexity of being human. How our fears, real and especially imagined, drive us to extremes in order to avoid them. How far we will go to escape death, sometimes sacrificing those whom we love to save ourselves, even when we don’t want to. How we often use the love others have for us, to manipulate them to fulfill our needs. How much of what motivates us is subconscious, and as long as we are unaware of it, we maintain our innocence and blame others for our deeds. How our deep seated traumas and damage leak into everything we think, feel, do and say, even when we have buried them so far inside we have consciously forgotten them and believe they don’t affect us because they don’t exist for us. How often what we do in the name of love is actually selfish and destructive. We claim to be helping, but we are actually hindering. Love becomes hate, hate becomes love, until telling the difference between the two is impossible.

“Audrey: Me? Dress up as someone else? No. I feel like I do that every day of my life.”

In Haven the villains do not see themselves as villains but as victims, and some see themselves as saviours. They do bad things to get good results, so their actions are justified by their noble cause. To them, their victims are the villains, and must be removed by any means necessary to restore peace. But every time one villain is removed, peace is not restored as another villain appears, created by the consequence of using violence to bring about peace.

Most of all, Haven and the other shows which I mentioned, touch upon one of the things which we all secretly and openly desire – power. To be powerful, to have power. Whether this power is of a magical kind or of a more practical kind. Fantasy power or real power. The type of power we seek to have depends on the type of powerlessness wound we have. Because we often feel so utterly powerless, and that feeling cuts us to the very core of our being leaving a wound. The wound hurts, throbbing inside of us, and we yearn to heal it and ourselves. If only we were powerful… then everything would be alright. We would no longer be vulnerable, afraid, alone, or at the mercy of others, of life, the world. Our power would heal our powerlessness. Our view of the power which would heal us is often the opposite of the wound.

So those who were bullied, become bullies. Those who were heartbroken, become heartless. Those who were too sensitive, become insensitive. Those who were abandoned, abandon. Those who once feared others, become fearful to others. Those who were made to feel insignificant, inferior, become important, superior. Those who were controlled, become controlling. Those who were used, become users. And so on.

“Jordan: You know, everyone says that my curse is that my touch hurts people. But that’s not it.
Nathan: It’s that you can’t be touched.”

But does this approach really heal the wound? Perhaps it does. Or does it just mask it. Does the wound feel as though it is healed because bit by bit, piece by piece, it is removed from the self and handed out to others to feel instead. Maybe if others share the wound, then the wound is no longer a wound at all but a normal thing which everyone has in common. If we are all in pain and have the same pain, then it is no longer a pain but a part of the human character.

In medicine the antidote is often the same as that which it is designed to heal. A tiny dose of a virus to trigger our immune defenses. A small drop of poison, building up our tolerance.

So perhaps the wound itself is the cure. Our true power lies within the powerlessness, not in the opposite of it. When we were given the wound, we were given our power.

Now if only we knew how to handle being powerful.

“Duke: She didn’t go out the front door, because the front door? Is gone.”

To be continued…


*source of Haven quotes – TV Fanatic