What is the Significance of the Wooden Birds/Falcons in Black Bird?

The fifth episode of Apple TV+’s crime series ‘Black Bird’ follows James “Jimmy” Keene’s efforts to elicit secrets from the suspected serial killer Larry DeWayne Hall. Jimmy talks about having sex with underage girls with Larry so that the latter will get closer to him. As Jimmy succeeds in becoming a constant presence in Larry’s life, he notices several wooden birds that look like falcons the suspected killer had made. Even though Jimmy asks what they are to Larry, the chooses to ignore the question of his new friend. If the viewers are intrigued to know more about wooden birds like Jimmy, let us share what we know!

What is the Significance of the Wooden Birds/Falcons?

Wooden falcons are a part of Larry Hall’s life in Springfield. While Jimmy searches Larry’s room for any useful things, a wooden falcon is present in the room. In the fifth episode of the show, Jimmy encounters numerous such wooden falcons. Although Larry doesn’t give an explanation concerning the wooden birds to Jimmy, we have found out the significance of the same from Jimmy Keene and Hillel Levin’s book ‘In with the Devil: A Fallen Hero, a Serial Killer, and a Dangerous Bargain for Redemption,’ the source text of the show.

As per the book, the real Larry Hall spent a considerable part of his time in Springfield penitentiary at the wood shop inside the prison, making the wooden falcons. Since Jimmy wasn’t allowed to enter the wood shop, he couldn’t initially find the significance of the wooden birds. However, one day, Jimmy managed to get into the wood shop when it wasn’t guarded by any officer. “The first thing I saw was that falcon. But then I saw that there wasn’t just one, but ten or twelve of them—exactly alike,” Jimmy revealed about his encounter with the mysterious wooden falcons, as per the source text.

Larry placed the wooden falcons on a map of Illinois and Indiana with numerous red dots scattered inside the borders. When asked about the wooden birds, Larry replied to Jimmy that he wanted to send them to his brother Gary Hall. “They [the wooden falcons] watch over the dead,” Larry told Jimmy when the latter insisted on finding out the wooden falcons’ importance, as per ‘In with the Devil.’ Larry’s explanation and the map with red dots made Jimmy perceive that the dots are the locations of the dead bodies of Larry’s alleged victims. “They [the wooden falcons] will guard their spirits to make sure they’re okay,” Larry further added to Jimmy, according to the latter’s book.

Image Credit: Dateline NBC/NBC

Since Jimmy failed to acquire Larry’s map before his release from Springfield, the authorities couldn’t find out whether the red spots were actually the locations of dead bodies. But Larry’s revelation that his birds look after the dead indicates that he wanted to send the same to Gary to possibly place it where his alleged victims were buried. Larry might have believed that the wooden falcons would make sure that the supposed dead bodies would remain in the same locations, especially by stopping the authorities from discovering the bodies.

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