Clive Barker Podcast’s Scene of the Week
On this week’s edition of Clive Barker Podcast’s Scene of the Week, I’ve chosen the introduction of Harry D’Amour from Clive Barker’s Lord of Illusions.
When the audience first meets Harry, he doesn’t strike us as much of a hero. He looks like he’s been on a week long binge. In fact, he’s just saved a small boy from a demon who was attempting to possess the child. He’s obviously in a deep depression following the events and it’s possible that he’s contemplating suicide. Thankfully, his companion Loomis shows up to offer him a new job so he can get out of New York for a few days.
Of course, things go from bad to worse once he gets to LA.
I love how Barker doesn’t setup Harry as the typical action hero that’s sure of himself. Showing Harry at a low point at the beginning of the movie was a wise decision because it lets the audience relate to him more. We see him as a human being rather than a generic archetype. It makes the audience come to care for him as the story progresses. Actor Scott Bakula (the one and only Harry D’Amour) makes all this work by bringing the right amount of vulnerability and charm to the role that really makes you like him.
Out of all the wonderful characters that Clive has created over the years, Harry D’Amour is my favorite. He’s a normal guy that’s always being drawn into chaotic situations whether he wants to or not. Actor Scott Bakula said in an interview that Clive told him that it’s Harry’s “karmic debt” to fight the forces of darkness and make sure good prevails in the end. For me, that’s what I find most fascinating about him. On a side note, fans should know that the brief flashback showing the exorcism is the incident at Wyckoff Street where Harry first encounters the demon known as ‘Lazy Susan’ that appears in the second book of the Art trilogy, Everville.