Tag Archives: Point of Honor

Possible Scenarios for Future Point of Honor Episodes – The Series Continues…

Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 11.30.56 AM

Still no word on whether or not Point of Honor will be picked up for future episodes…but just in case, I am going to keep going with possible scenarios, in hope that the series writers stumble upon this blog. To keep up with the story, you might want to read the first installment of the series HERE.

Anyway…as war drama unfolds at home and on the battlefield, things really heat up in Lynchburg…

Episode 2 – PHCT

Incensed by General McClellan’s slow but steady advance toward Richmond in May 1862, the prosperous, wage-earning, free African-Confederate-Americans Virgil and Adolphus – citizens of Lynchburg – pool their ever-growing wages to form and equip a black Confederate regiment. When christened the Point of Honor Colored Troops (PHCT) at a Lynchburg abolitionist jubilee, the very sight of armed blacks standing firm in defense of their southern rights so inspires other Lynchburg slaveholders, that they too reject slavery and free their slaves, who in turn join the swelling negro ranks. Now brigade strength, the PHCT march out of town to face the invading Yankee hordes and with great resolve sing a medley of  Follow the Drinkin’ Gourd and Bonnie Blue Flag – putting forever to rest academic revisionists’ foolish notion that black Confederates are merely a figment of the white southern imagination.

Meanwhile…the drunk (though charming) quadruple amputee Rhodes brother (paroled by his Yankee captors who thought him harmless, as well as charmingly drunk) makes his way to Richmond via ambulance to serve the Confederacy as Lynchburg’s representative in the Virginia State legislature. Rumors fly that he is in contact – though West Point connections – with his brother John, who is still held prisoner in Boston. He is, in fact, plotting with John to beat the Lincoln administration in the freedom game by proposing a Confederate Emancipation Proclamation of their own. The audience knows through a series of pan left – pan right stock footage landscape scenes and voice-overs that correspondence between the Rhodes brothers, Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee, and an irascible Irishman named Patrick Cleburne underscores great support for emancipation among the upper echelons of Rebel leadership. Though there will certainly be resistance to such a revolutionary turn of events – they hope that white southerners will change their tunes once they witness the martial prowess of the thousands fighting under the PHCT banner.

Back at the Point of Honor plantation…times are tough as there is now absolutely no one to work the fields. Not a single person. The womenfolk thus subsist entirely on handouts from the elderly and infirm free black Confederate citizens who are unfit to serve in anything but a motley home guard/Confederate Invalid Corps d’Afrique, and the Confederate money sent home by their drunk (though charming) brother in Richmond and the PHCT soldiers in the field. Pistol packin’ Estella Rhodes, the most incorrigible of the Rhodes sisters, has been behaving strangely. Her constant vomiting, cravings, and irritable behavior provokes suspicion among her sisters. Could she be…..?

In the final scene, Estella sits by the fire writing a letter – addressed to the Richmond front c/o commanding officer, PHCT, Confederate States Army. Cue Dixie and extremely affected southern accent voice-over – “My Dearest Virgil….”

Hoping for the call from Amazon entertainment…fingers crossed!!!

Keith

PS – See another future scenario HERE.

 

Possible Scenarios for Future Point of Honor Episodes

Screen Shot 2015-01-14 at 7.43.48 PMNow that you have all seen the pilot of Point of Honor (and my review) you are most certainly waiting on the edge of your seats to see what’s coming next – that is, should the series be picked up for additional episodes. Just in case the producers have not thought ahead and drawn up plans for future shows I will offer the wisdom and knowledge of years of work as a nineteenth-century Americanist and suggest some possible scenarios. Now mind you, I am no screenwriter – but I think these ideas will dovetail well with the pilot and capture the imaginations of a nation of viewers.

Episode One: The Point of Honor Free Darkey Sing-a-Long.

It’s late summer, 1861 in Lynchburg and the former slaves from the Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 3.26.16 PMPoint of Honor plantation have pooled their generous wages to host a harvest-time soiree honoring the noblesse oblige of their former masters. And what a gala event! Robert E. Lee (Fabio), also a slave-holding Virginia abolitionist, is in town investigating reports of an individual Union soldier lurking about the Lynchburg countryside and takes time away from his general stuff to stop by the plantation and kick off the party. After a flirtatious and daring Virginia Reel with former slave Abby, the Confederate chieftain wades into the crowd of freedmen and leads the first song. All clasp hands and enthusiastically join in except for Lorelei Rhodes, who despite being married to a Yankee, devilishly plots with former overseer Cutler to re-enslave everyone.

Meanwhile…John Rhodes and his drunk (though charming) brother lead a four-man Confederate artillery raid on Boston, Massachusetts where they encounter a host of Brahmin Yankee officers, all of whom having once been John’s West Point roommates. After a brief skirmish, where the drunk brother is rendered a quadruple amputee (the wounds are not mortal) at the hands of each Brahmin simultaneously, the Rhodes boys are captured. Though disappointed by his brother’s unfortunate dismemberment, John is relieved when he is treated to punch and lectures on transcendentalism.  Later, in their cell, the boys receive a letter from their tougher-than-nails sister, pistol packin’ Estella Rhodes, where they hear the news of the plantation fete. Overjoyed, John and his drunk, armless, and legless brother sing an in absentia duet of Go Down Moses as the credits roll.

Stay tuned for future developments…

Keith

Straight to the Point

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 10.56.45 AMWell my friends, I did not think it possible, but something incredible has happened. Gods and Generals has been surpassed as the dumbest Civil War drama in the history of entertainment. And the Conspirator – a picture so horrible that it nearly (nearly) defies words – has moved to a close third, though it closes ranks with Gods from time to time depending on my mood.

Of course, I am speaking of the recent Amazon television pilot, Point of Honor. To be fair, judging by the iPhone quality cinematography, the show was made on the cheap, and so I will not criticize Point for its lack of sweeping epicness. And…I will give the writers due props for noting that slavery was the central issue of secession and ultimately, what the Confederacy was fighting to maintain. And…there are actually black people in the show, with lines and everything. But my praise ends there.

Point of Honor is absolutely ridiculous in every other respect. For one, the show’s protagonist, one John Rhodes, is a Lynchburg, Virginia slave-owning abolitionist (that’s right, friends) West Point cadet who inexplicably frees all his slaves after news of Fort Sumter and then proceeds to join the Confederacy to defend…something (we are not told what). I suppose he is defending honor (hey….).

Confused? Don’t worry…there’s more. Rhodes’s best friend and West Point compatriot, Robert Sumner – who, not incidentally, is married to Rhodes’s sister, Lorelei (not kidding), hatches a brilliant plan to proceed to Lynchburg – deep, deep in the heart of Virginia – with a contingent of twelve (12!) cavalrymen and his sadistic West Point commandant, where they will proceed to attempt to capture a railroad. How Union cavalry, all twelve of them, managed to get to Lynchburg undetected in 1861 is beyond me.

But they do, which means…John, his drunk (though charming) brother, the Rhodes family patriarch, and a couple of dashing neighbors mount up and ride out to meet the foe to defend – Point of Honor (get it?). In the melee, papa Rhodes, in a daring one-man charge (you can’t make this up),  is shot dead by the sadistic commandant who is teaching a US cavalryman how to fire a musket – I guess that particular cavalryman was out sick on musket training day.

Bummer for the Rhodes family. With all this whoop-dee-do going on: friends and in-laws, neighbors, emancipated slaves, distraught family members – all fighting each other, Christmas dinner will be pretty awkward at the plantation big house. I can only imagine where the plot will go next, should the show be picked up.

Naturally, there is more to this show than Blue-Gray hijinks. The women of Point of Honor offer a compelling counter to the swashbuckling machismo of their men-folk, especially if you are a fan of bodice-ripping Harlequin Romance novels. I suppose the writers were trying to conjure strength-in-the-face-of-adversity steel magnolia types for a twenty-first century audience, but what we get are nineteenth-century “ladies” who say and wear things that would make Belle Watling blush.

There’s more to talk about. But why bother? I think you get where I am coming from on this one. And, in case you are wondering, I absolutely recommend watching Point of Honor (HERE – it’s free). In fact, I think it should become a cult classic – like Showgirls or something. Maybe we should come up with a drinking game and throw Point of Honor themed parties.

Who’s in?

Keith