Television

The Idol Season 1 Episode 3 Review: Daybreak


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That was an emotional rollercoaster.

The Idol Season 1 Episode 3 dived into Joecyln’s complicated and traumatic past to explore why she was stuck in a rut.

Just when we thought Tedros couldn’t be more messed up, he outdid himself at every turn, from sexually assaulting people who were trying to work to physically assaulting people at work.

L - Joss and Tedros - The Idol

It became clear that Joss and Tedros were developing a complex interdependent relationship.

We established that Jocelyn had developed unhealthy attitudes towards sex, which was clear in how she approached sexual situations. There must be a risk involved, whether physically or in general.

Joss - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

It has to involve some kinky fetish play, and Tedros preyed on that.

Sex is powerful as it is one of the rarest times two people bare themselves to each other. Even if no one planned on it being emotional, somehow, emotions might find a way into the situation, and that’s when it can become murky.

Tedros had used sex and trauma to imbue himself in Jocelyn’s life, and next, he sought to establish control.

Like most people in his position, he did that by tearing Jocelyn apart and building her until she became dependent on his projected never-ending wisdom.

Tedros Cheers - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

It appeared he had done that many times and was conversant with all the dials to push.

On The Idol Season 1 Episode 2, Joss, Izaak, and Chloe came together to perform a great number, and it was at that moment that it should have been clear that Tedros was building something.

He was looking to create a perfect musical group. He had a male vocalist and a pianist, and Jocelyn was supposed to be the female vocalist.

He was reining in Joss; soon enough, she would become like the rest of them.

Everyone has a weakness, and without knowing it, Tedros revealed his. He had an inferiority complex.

Tedros Durag - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

The complex manifested in two forms. One was jealousy, and the other was lying to inflate his worth.

Tedros: Let me catch you lookin’ at her again. Let me catch you lookin’ at her again.
Guard: I’m not–
Tedros: Let me catch you lookin’ at her again.
Guard: I’m sorry. I’m not–
Tedros: Let me fuckin’ catch you lookin’ at her again, I’ll fuckin’ drag you down Rodeo by your fuckin’ ass, just fuckin’ stomp you. I’ll fuckin’ curb-stomp you.
Guard: I’m sorry.
Tedros: I’ll fuckin’ curb-stomp you.

He thought himself superior, and anything that would threaten that superiority, he moved to destroy, whether that came in the form of a security guard in a clothes store who genuinely showed interest in Jocelyn or a chef who cared about her wellbeing, even with questionable motives.

He moved to separate Joss from anyone who had any inclinations to protect her. And so he weighed everyone.

He knew where Leia stood, so the best he could do was keep her distracted by scaring her or using Izaak.

Leia - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

Then there was Xander. Tedros threw bait, and Xander enthusiastically bit. It was a done deal when Xander proposed using the leaked image as music artwork. No normal person would think to do something of that sort. It still begs the question: who leaked that photo?

Tedros: What is it with this fuckin’ industry? Everybody hates what they fuckin’ do.
Xander: Welcome to the music business, yeah.

But at that moment, Tedros knew he had Xander.

Joss’ guardian angels must have been working overtime because Chaim and Destiny saw through the charade.

Chaim: I think our girl’s in trouble.
Destiny: My grandmother said you never trust a dude with a rat tail.

Destiny knew Tedros was not worth anything when he lied about having grown up in LA.

Destiny - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

My best guess is he came from the middle of Nowhere, USA, where he was doomed to continue the cycle of living that had existed there forever, and when he went out into the world, he was underestimated at every turn.

That’s why he got defensive if anyone suggested something he didn’t want to be said about him. He corrected his mannerisms on The Idol Season 1 Episode 1 to appear classier than he was.

The episode’s highlight was the dinner.

Everyone came dressed for a nice time, but the night ended differently.

Moses Sumney (Actor) - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

What was worth noting was that for the first time, Jocelyn stood up for herself, something we haven’t seen her do.

Joss: I wanna be taken seriously.
Tedros: Why?
Joss: Because I do.
Tedros: But why?
Joss: Because I wanna have a career that lasts and is meaningful and isn’t like a fucking joke.

When the idea of using the photo for artwork was first introduced, she looked at everyone’s faces and gave them what they needed. But upon slight reflection, she revealed her true feelings.

The thing about Jocelyn was that she didn’t think much about anything.

Her decisions were split second; no thought was put into them. Imagine what she would do if she paid just a little attention.

In our The Idol Season 1 Episode 2 review, we assessed that Jocelyn’s mother must have been good, but that assessment was incorrect. She was the worst kind of mom — the kind who tries to live their failed dreams through their children.

Jocelyn - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

Jocelyn had developed a bad relationship with creativity and performance because of her mother.

I don’t think that topic came up coincidentally. Before, Joss had talked to Chloe about her mom, which must have been Tedros’s fishing expeditions. He needed to know where it hurt the most.

Here’s the thing: we knew Tedros was awful, but the boundaries were unclear because he had none.

If he genuinely cared about Jocelyn, he would have helped her find a way to heal from that trauma and find better things to inspire creativity rather than using past trauma.

Xander - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

Even when there was pushback, he kept soldering on. We have ourselves another of men who can’t take no for an answer.

He sadistically made everyone watch as he assaulted her afresh. The look on her face after the whole thing was over would have been haunting to a normal person. She looked like a dead woman walking.

Thank you for taking care of me.

Joss [to Tedros]

The stakes were high, with Nicki having Dyanne practice and nail Jocelyn’s strip club choreography, suggesting she was finding a replacement for Joss. It’s not unheard of for pop stars to hear their songs released by someone else without their knowledge.

It was no secret that The Idol Season 1 would lean into sex and feature explicit scenarios.

Ramsey (Actor) - The Idol Season 1 Episode 3

I have no qualms about explicit content, but there are things to look out for, and this episode raised significant red flags.

First, when Jocelyn and Tedros had sex in the dressing room, that was sexual assault.

Those workers did not consent to be exposed to a sexual situation, which is how assault happens. No one is paid enough to clean a stranger’s semen from clothes after they finish on them.

Jocelyn is usually scantily dressed, which can be a double-edged sword because, on the one hand, people should be free to dress however they feel comfortable, and women’s bodies don’t have to be covered up. They are not weapons.

On the other hand, female sexuality has been exploited for a long time and can do a disservice to women. What is really concerning is how nudity in this show is limited only to females.

If you really want to be provocative, Euphoria is still right there for benchmarking. It balances male and female nudity; thus, no one seems exploited.

The biggest problem with “Daybreak” was that it had no direction, tackling a multitude of issues in a 45-minute span. It was too much for such a short episode.

Over to you, The Idol Fanatics. What did you think?

Let us know in the comments section.

Denis Kimathi is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. He has watched more dramas and comedies than he cares to remember. Catch him on social media obsessing over [excellent] past, current, and upcoming shows or going off about the politics of representation on TV. Follow him on Twitter.

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