Off Ramp
The Leftovers | Season 2 | Episode 3

Off Ramp

TV-MA | 59 MIN

Written by Damon Lindelof & Patrick Somerville

Directed by Carl Franklin

Laurie Garvey scrubs her car at a self-carwash. Tom Garvey, dressed in white inside a chapter of the Guilty Remnant, passes a note to a despondent resident asking if she's okay. Tom takes the woman, Susan, to an office building where Laurie is running a support group for ex-G.R. members trying to readjust to the outside world.

Laurie returns to the apartment she shares with Tom to find her son passed out in front of her laptop, watching old videos of Holy Wayne. When Tom wakes up, Laurie tells him that she's heard of a new G.R. house with 30 members, but worries about him needing adjustment time on the outside before infiltrating a new community. Tom insists that working from the inside is the only way they can help people.

The next morning, Laurie is confronted by her office building's landlord. He knows she's been allowing people to sleep in the commercial space, which is illegal, and demands she give him $200 more a month even though she's already behind on rent. Laurie explains that she'll have money soon; she's writing a book and it's going very well.

Laurie runs a meeting for ex-Guilty Remnant members, which is interrupted by several male members of the G.R. One writes a note while staring down Susan; Laurie orders the men out, crumples their note and tosses it to the floor. That night, Laurie once again washes her car, and Tom infiltrates a new G.R. house.

A few days later, Laurie brings Susan to her former home, where she reunites with her son and husband. Tom brings another recruit, Howard, to a support meeting.

Laurie continues to work on her book while listening to a newscast that questions if resurrection could be real. A man in Australia, believed to be dead, recently emerged from a cave outside of Perth. When Tom returns home, Laurie admits that she saw Tom's text message from Jill about their upcoming meeting. Tom agrees to let Laurie drive him to their meeting and to give Jill a letter from her. Laurie waits for Tom in her car the following day, and frantically runs the wipers, trying to wash a stubborn spot off the windshield.

Later, Laurie arrives at the office to find all of her support group members outside, the entire contents of the office on the street and the door padlocked. She searches in vain for her laptop, which contains the only copy she has of her manuscript. Laurie meets with the landlord who denies taking her computer. That night, she breaks into his house when only his wife and son are home. Laurie spots the son playing a game on her laptop and snatches it, running from the house with the landlord's wife cursing at her heels. On her drive home, two members of the Guilty Remnant stand in the road, blocking Laurie's path. She revs her engine and when they don't move, she runs them over -- and returns to the carwash.

The next morning, Laurie mails her completed manuscript to a publisher. She heads to Susan and her husband's house, where they have a productive discussion about Susan's transition home. Laurie leaves feeling accomplished.
Tom spots another possible recruit at the Guilty Remnant house. He asks the girl if she's okay via a note. Instead of responding, the girl blows a whistle alerting the group. Tom is thrown into a van. When the vehicle stops, the doors open and Meg Abbott climbs in. Without a word, she undoes Tom's pants and has sex with him. Afterwards, G.R. muscle throw Tom into the street and cover him in gasoline. Meg stands over him and flicks a lighter, but only ignites her cigarette. "Tell your mom Meg says hello," she tells him before she and the others drive away. Tom confronts his mother about Meg that night, and tells her that the G.R. know something. Laurie forbids Tom from going undercover again.

Susan, her husband and son prepare to go to the beach for the day. Susan unfolds the crumpled note from the G.R. member that Laurie tossed on the floor. It reads: "ANY DAY NOW." Susan drives her family to the beach, and while both her husband and son are distracted, she steers the car into the path of oncoming traffic.

Laurie meets with the publisher interested in her book, but gets a call about Susan killing her family just before she heads into the meeting. The publisher introduces her to the editor who will work on her book and help her inject "feeling" into the manuscript. Confused, Laurie asks for clarification; the publisher carries on insensitively about the events detailed in the book, including putting Jill in danger, and asks her how it felt. By way of answer, Laurie lunges across the room, knocking the publisher out of the chair, and attempts to strangle him.

Tom bails Laurie out of jail, and tells her that what Susan did wasn't her fault. Through her tears, Laurie tells Tom, "They won't jump out of the way" – referring to the G.R. members that she's been hitting with her car. Not understanding, Tom tells her that the support group needs her, and that she has to get herself together. She asks him, "Why are we losing?" and Tom explains that the Guilty Remnant is giving people something to believe in; they need to replace that belief with something else if they want to succeed.
In their next meeting, Laurie reveals her own history with the Guilty Remnant, and sets up Tom to tell his own story. He tells a version of his history with Holy Wayne, explaining that before his death, Wayne gave Tom the gift to take people's pain away. Tom explains that up until now he's been afraid to use his gift, but he can't let them hurt any longer. He stands up and opens his arms to the group. "Who wants a hug?" he asks.