Rectify : Question about Amantha and Daniel

Question about Amantha and Daniel

I'm new to this series and am REALLY trying to like it. But, not knowing anything about it, I have a question:

What kind of relationship do Amantha and Daniel have? Is there any incest between them? I ask because of her constantly calling him "honey" (OK I am from the South but find this odd -- I call people honey all the time but not my siblings, and even if I did it wouldn't be every other word to them), that comment she made in the car while driving about "I'll even keep my hands to myself" when he wanted to sleep.

I'm only on Ep. 3 of Season 1.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I'm up to date with the series, and as far as I can tell there is nothing to suggest they had an incestuous relationship.

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Mphater, Amantha didn't say "I'll even keep my hands to myself." What she said is "I'll keep both hands on the wheel."

Amantha is telling him to trust her. He isn't used to that. She's saying, "It's okay to fall asleep/let go of control, I'll drive carefully." It's an early indication that Daniel has lived with a constant sense of life being out of control. It's hard for him to let go, because his experience is that something horrific could happen at any moment.

There's no indication of incest, but there is indication of a kind of emotional bondage, which is natural to the unique situation they find themselves in. Amantha has devoted herself to freeing Daniel, sacrificing her own life to do so. She looked up to him as her beloved older brother and could not accept moving on with her life as long as his was denied.

Being with him again is of course overwhelming for her. So her saying "honey" shows both her pent-up affection for Daniel and also a maternal attitude -- because if you listen you can hear Janet (their mother) call Daniel "honey" a lot too. In their minds he's still vulnerable, still a boy. And they're right. The pair of them are bursting with affection long denied, and a strong desire to protect their long-lost son/brother, now that the miracle has happened and he's back with them again. They can't help it.


"You must not judge what I know by what I find words for." - Marilynne Robinson

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I to am new to the show and the incest vibe is there for at least Amantha, I'm not sure it's the same for Daniel though. It clearly isn't a "normal" relationship between brother and sister. The scene where he was masturbating, her listening through the door and he know someone is out there by the floor creaking. Too strange, but for me at least it was a sign that this isn't a normal relationship.

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel


What's normal about Daniel anyway? Anything Daniel touches isn't normal. It goes without saying then that Amantha wouldn't be normal being the sister of Daniel.


He's normal in the scene of there are signs of the trauma by being raped in prison, repeatedly, the emotional and physical abuses from other inmates. If you want to survive in that environment, then you shut down your emotions. He felt somewhat helpless and lack the knowledge in having to deal with these type of vicious, monstrous older men who wanted nothing but to scare, abuse and demoralize him. In order to deal with what is happening to him, he has to shut down his emotions if he wants to survive within those walls. If you don't find some type of coping mechanism, you won't survive. Just because he's out, it doesn't erase the things that happened to him while in prison. He was 18 and didn't have the knowledge on how to survive. He's never going back to the 18 year old Daniel, I don't think it's possible for him.



Just look at the innocent nice Christian woman Tawney. Normal Southern Charm by anybody's standards. Became an emotional wreck soon after meeting Daniel.

Teddy was a normal hardworking guy with a house, a car and a wife. After meeting Daniel he was sexually assaulted and is having marital problems with the wife.



Again, Daniel has been in prison for 20 years, no one behind those walls showed anything positive affection, or that he mattered to anyone. He also doesn't know how to deal with the positive things in life because everything was negative. So when Tawney showed any kind of interest in him, he didn't know how to react to the positive interest in him. He's in a very unfamiliar world and he doesn't know how to handle it. He did ask her if he could kiss her because he didn't know how to handle it. What's acceptable/unacceptable. He's been gone for 20 years and the world has changed.

Teddy's a jerk, and that's not a loving, caring marriage. Half the time Teddy mocks her religious beliefs. She seems more afraid of him then in love with him. I don't think Teddy is normal personality. He seems more like a bully, and probably bullied both Daniel and Melvin in high school, believed he was superior to them. He's overconfident in his abilities and is a failure at heart. Even his father doesn't believe in his abilities.

No human behavior comes from nowhere, it's already built into a personality and I have feeling that we haven't seen the real Teddy but I think has a very dark side to him. And, seems very controlling, arrogant, condescending and manipulative.

I believe there is a negative history between Teddy and Daniel, which might be the cause of the attack that Daniel did to him.



Ted Sr was a normal hardworking loving husband with a great relationship. After Daniel showed up, he was soon sent to sleep on the couch.


I haven't seen that yet, but you are assuming a lot, we don't know what the relationship was prior to Daniel's arrival? Do you? I don't think anything is clear cut at the moment. What was Ted Sr relationship with Daniel's father?



I can keep going. The point being anything associated with Daniel isn't normal. He has the devil's touch. Look what he did to Tawney and her Christian faith. Daniel had the touch of the devil in luring this Christian woman away from her Bible and her marriage to her husband. Now Tawney questions her faith (she said so herself) and her marriage is on the rocks and at the verge of irreconcilable differences leading up to divorce (huge no no for Christians). Daniel is the antichrist.


But, that's just your own opinion and I don't believe you're right about Daniel. Know anything about human behavior or psychology? I do and have studied it for a very long time. I see most of these characters have too many psychological issues and I think the most normal character is the youngest son Jared, who doesn't know Daniel but wants to know him now. He's the only one who doesn't bring the past *beep* this family has dealt with into the present.

Give me a break? Daniel isn't the antichrist, he's a man who went through a hellish period in his life, he doesn't understand this new modern world that kept evolving while he was in prison. He doesn't have the normal reaction to anything happening presently, BECAUSE he spent half of his life behind bars. If anyone is the antichrist, I would say it's the state senator, hopefully not the next Governor and all around scumbag, whom I believe he has something to hide and motive to keep he's secret hidden in order to run for Governor, maybe Daniel saw what happened and repressed his memories because it was so horrible for an 18 year old to witness and plenty of motive for the Senator to put him back in prison before his repressed memories returns. I think the Sheriff is questioning the Senator motives dictating what he has to do in order to put Daniel behind bars again. Did he have a motive to kill Hannah? Was she sleeping with him and said she'd tell his wife about them?

I've read some of your post and it's very clean you dislike Daniel a lot, but in doing that, you've shut out that maybe he didn't kill her and that someone else could be the one who murdered her.

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

i was warned about, and I wanted to have an open conversation about the psychology of these characters. You don't have an open mind at all and overlooked the evidence until you twist it into a puzzle to fit your theories, even the illogical ones. You don't know a thing about psychology, just based on your writings. For you everything is black and white, while the reality of human behavior is mostly different shades of gray.

Please don't respond to anything I write again. At this point, you are too close minded and we will never agree on anything. Good luck.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

eileen-guthrie555, a heads-up that Sign-In is a long-time troll on this board.


"You must not judge what I know by what I find words for." - Marilynne Robinson

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Thanks but someone already sent me a private response. He/She is very opinionated and clearly knows nothing about psychology. I don't want to say anything else because my parents taught if you can't say anything nice don't say anything at all. Let's leave it at that and move on.

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

woops! i wondered if maybe that were the case...but replied already...last time i'll do that. (with that person)
Thanks for the warning! (and not being a psychopath :) )

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Daniel is portrayed as the antichrist.

Not by McKinnon, but by this poster. I'll throw my chips in with McKinnon.


"You must not judge what I know by what I find words for." - Marilynne Robinson

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Amantha wasn't listening at Daniel's bedroom door because she was drawn to his masturbating. She didn't know he was doing that, and once she realized what he was doing her expression indicated first surprise then regret at her timing.

It isn't "normal," because as mentioned there is emotional bondage. I don't think the show is trying to indicate she's sexualized that connection. Her interests seems motherly - she says "honey" just like her mom. She behaves like a mother. In this case, like a mom interrupting a teenaged son's private moment.

Earlier in the ep, Amantha had been frustrated when a maintenance man at Jon's motel witnessed her and Jon having sex and they had to stop. But it's not just sex Amantha wanted -- she wanted an emotional connection. Then we get Teddy and Tawney having sex, with Tawney's obvious alienation. After Jon leaves the family bbq, Amantha's left without an emotional connection, so she turns to the one she's made primary in her life -- Daniel. She goes to his room to try and fill that emotional void, but in so doing destroys his first major experience of privacy since his release from prison -- and I think she knows it.


"You must not judge what I know by what I find words for." - Marilynne Robinson

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I always noticed Amantha's strange one-sided intensity towards Daniel and thought I was being a pervert. I feel less so now that other people have noticed it!

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel


I feel the relationship between Amantha and Daniel mirrors many relationships between identical twins.

I don't necessarily agree that there are any impropriety or sexual undertones.

My interpretations is I believe that the two siblings are bonded as if they were identical twins. They see themselves in each other. As such, they feel obligated and motivated to help the other succeed and avoid obstacles in life.


Very nicely put and I agree.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I've only seen the series up to second season, so if there's any new character development that contradicts to what I say here please inform me...

I don't believe that there's anything sexual in their relationship, and I'm guessing that people assume their intensity of characters to be somewhat sexual.

Amantha and Daniel are characters that are driven by a series of traumatic event, and they choose to process this trauma by variety of different ways. While both of them have very little control of the events that happened in their life, they choose to exercise(or not exercise) that control. For example, while Daniel chooses to not defend himself or reveal information about the rape/murder, Amantha chooses to defend his case fiercely and almost obsessively. Conversely, while Daniel chooses to restrain his emotion, Amantha pours all hers out.

So far, Daniel and Amantha somewhat maintained their sense of control by reacting certain ways for almost 20 years. But when Daniel gets out of prison temporarily, the situation changes dramatically and leaves them to think 'How much control do I have now? How do I protect it? How am I supposed to act?'... and I think it shows on every aspect of their interaction, including that scene about driving. They are learning to interact with each other and rest of the world all over again, and it's bound to be awkward at times.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I think "honey" is a term of endearment and Amantha very much feels like she has to "walk on eggshells" around Daniel. Keep in mind that she was only twelve when Daniel was arrested and incarcerated. She was a child at the time so everything she knew about her brother and the case she had to learn while maturing herself. That is doubly hard because, as if often the case when one sibling has serious health problems, the whole family becomes engulfed in caring for them and the others are kind of left to their own devices. I don't think Janet was willfully neglectful of her but she was probably consumed with the backlash of such allegations, Daniel's arrest, losing her husband and forming a new relationship and becoming a step-mother and mother again. It's quite a load to carry - which is why she "dances around" topics and cooks.

Also, I do not believe that hugging, kissing, using terms of endearment or even sleeping in the same bed with a sibling of the opposite sex necessarily constitutes an inappropriate relationship. It is very common especially in big families when everyone didn't have a room or even a bed. Remember, at one point, Trey told Daniel that he was Hannah's first (...well, outside the family when stating that her uncle molested her before that). I would think THAT would have raised some serious questions if it was considered that "wrong" for that time and place. I got the impression it didn't beyond Daniel feeling he had to protect her honor.

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"Can we all just parachute down from Cloud Coo-coo Land?" Jimmy-Better Call Saul

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

1 moment I found odd is in S3: Amantha wakes up having forgotten that Daniel is staying over at her apartment. She runs around the house in a shirt and undies, then gets startled by Daniel being there. The weird part is that she doesn't act even remotely self-conscious of being pant-less after realising he's there.

I can't attest for many other women, but personally, I'd feel flustered being caught in underwear even in my all-female household. I even watched that scene several times trying to figure out what they were trying to say with that, and I've still got nothing.




Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I can see your point. However, I don't think it's that bizarre for siblings to feel less "inhibited" with one another, especially if they grew up together probably taking baths and running around naked with one another.

Personally, I know that I've seen photos of myself with my siblings and have photos of my own children in nothing but our birthday suits. It is really only within the last decade or two that everything is viewed with this kind of "sexual abuse/sexual inappropriateness."

I am not that old but I recall the nuns hitting us with paddles or giving hugs, as needed. Now, teachers can't touch kids without dismissal for fear of a lawsuit. As we have all seen in family courts around the country, the government can't legislate human emotion and trying to just leads to all kinds of misinterpretations (and, more profoundly) misread agendas.

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"Can we all just parachute down from Cloud Coo-coo Land?" Jimmy-Better Call Saul

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Oh, I agree that everything is over-sexualised and fueled by a paranoia of pedophilia these days. People grow up with so much touch deprivation in Anglo-Germanic cultures already that we cuddle up to pets to stave off that craving. Now the establishment is out to make it even worse!

I have no problem with pre-pubescent kids being around each other undressed. But as adults? Particularly in the context of these 2 siblings having never actually lived together since Amantha was a child (so no time to lower inhibition after she hit puberty) AND since Daniel has endured nearly 2 decades of sexual deprivation.

Like everything else in this show, you can interpret things a 100 ways. But it's certainly a very strange scene in the context of their overall relationship.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Absolutely. And, I totally agree...to a point. Remember, that EVERY single family grows up with whatever mores, morals and values their parents want to instill in them. A vast majority of them will NEVER even question that - even to the point of punishing themselves and their own offspring to "the right way" regardless of where that fits on the spectrum of TOTAL SOCIETY.

The point being that...maybe, just maybe...Amantha had to grow up a bit on her own because her mother was preoccupied and she chose to relax some of the "rules" along the way. Maybe not. Again, it's all open to interpretation and personal experiences.

My father, an Army veteran and Chicago cop had a saying..."That's why they make Fords, Chevys and Dodges...personal preferences." Maybe what is "weird" to us is "normal" to somebody else. Only the "receiver" of the incident/situation can determine how it's perceived.

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"Can we all just parachute down from Cloud Coo-coo Land?" Jimmy-Better Call Saul

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Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Yet, I am sure you also enjoyed the privileges of KNOWING that you could talk to your parents about *anything* at *anytime.

There is no handbook for "parenting" as there is no handbook for "growing up." We ALL strive to find some "workable/tolerable" path, whatever that means within the confines of our family of origin and society, as a whole. Sometimes, *maturity* means that we just accept that we all have to forge our own path, whatever that may be.

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"Can we all just parachute down from Cloud Coo-coo Land?" Jimmy-Better Call Saul

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Yeah, I was just pointing out that family dynamics are indeed very strange even with the very best of intentions. And the great thing about this show is that it just captures that strangeness without ever preaching to us what to think.

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

Absolutely! I think that's why it's appealing to us (the public ;-). We can empathize with ALL the characters, no matter how they act/believe.

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"Can we all just parachute down from Cloud Coo-coo Land?" Jimmy-Better Call Saul

Re: Question about Amantha and Daniel

I cuddle with my cat.
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