This month, the second season of Lodge 49 wrapped up with a stunning finale. This show on AMC follows Sean “Dud” Dudley as he navigates the world of a fraternal order known as The Order of the Lynx. Dud is a burn-out surfer, an unemployed pool boy and is generally without purpose or meaning. He spends his days talking to his friends at the local donut shop in Long Beach, trying to figure out what life is about. Until one day when his car breaks down in front of a struggling Lynx Lodge. Dud pledges and is initiated into the order and then he begins to experience his life anew through the signs and wonders of the Lodge.

I began watching this show right around the same time I started pledging with the Odd Fellows. I laughed with recognition of what it felt like to join a lodge. The characters were familiar. As Dud began to learn the secrets of the Order of the Lynx, I too began to learn the secrets of the Odd Fellows. While the Lynx Lodge is a made-up order, loosely based on the Rosicrucians and the Knights of Pythias, there was a lot of it that is familiar. The Lynxes have a social space where folks get together to play games and drink beer. They have philanthropic work in the community. And the members legitimately love each other. With a few different symbols, rituals and titles, this show could easily be about an Odd Fellows lodge. Even with all the quests for hidden scrolls and alchemical rituals, the heart of the show is found in the teachings of the Odd Fellows: Friendship, Love and Truth.

By the end of the second season, the characters of the Lodge and Long Beach have begun to find their way. Their meaning and purpose have developed to put each person on a path. And there is still a bit of mystery and wonder involved. While AMC has not picked up a third season of the show yet, I hope they do. It is great to see fraternal orders and secret societies so accurately and sympathetically depicted on TV. I wonder what new mysteries will arise and how the teachings of the Lynx Lodge 49 will help us understand them. Most importantly, I look forward to finding out what happens to Dud and his lodgemates.

Lodge 49 is available for streaming on the AMC website, hulu and other services online.

Alex Haider-Winnett

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