This Week on TV, Jan. 24, 2015

Spoiler Alert!

No Agent Carter this week (grrrr!) and they haven’t brought back Nashville yet, but we got the returns of The Flash, Arrow, and Reign alongside the continuing Castle, Gotham, and Grimm, so life is good! 🙂

Castle

vlcsnap-00079You know, it really is impressive how they take something as morbid as murder and manage to mix in so much hilarity.

This week’s niche: telenovellas! Soap operas in Spanish! Which Esposito apparently loves! He tries to hide it, of course, passing his knowledge of it off on some unseen tía, but it’s adorably obvious. I’ve no fondness for soaps myself, in any language (as I prefer my brain not spontaneously implode upon itself), but it can be hard to argue with the idea of admiring a senorita who is muy caliente.

Castle gets his first real client as a private investigator, thanks to Beckett’s referral, and it comes complete with a gorgeous, pseudo femme fatale spinning a tale mixing both truth and deception to get what she wants, even pulling a (prop) gun on him to get what she wants. Castle is very much out of his element, but proves resourceful, clever, and his work helps lead Beckett to this week’s murderer.

As for the hilarity, that goes into a list of quote far too long for this blog. I practically couldn’t stop laughing! 😀

Gotham

gotham-logo-screencapWow! This week’s episode was gripping!

Gordon forces his way back onto the force, trading the capture of the Electrocutioner for his reinstatement as a detective. This involves basically extorting Commissioner Loeb, which was an interesting move to make. Fortunately, he manages to lure the man straight into the GCPD, and he was smart enough to wear the insulated boots that Nigma provided, so while everyone else was stunned unconscious, Gordon was still active. And that was a great way to end the threat, by splashing a cup of water onto that dangerous device and shorting it out! 😀

Barbara has gone to try and stay with her parents, who strike me as rather selfish and self-important. Here’s hoping she gets past the trauma of her recent experiences soon. Though, when she returns to Gotham, she may find herself with some unexpected competition. I was surprised when they went with the idea of having Thompkins have a crush on Gordon, but I can see why Gordon would respond. Not only is Morena Baccarin really easy on the eyes, but Thompkins is clearly compassionate, level-headed, etc.

As for things in the criminal underworld (and I am somewhat happy that they didn’t have Bruce, Selina, Alfred, etc. in this episode), a little bomb just went off. Fish “kidnapped” her girl Liza and arranged to ransom her back to Falcone, in exchange for his seat as the head of Gotham’s underworld. Falcone, having lost the drive of his youth, relents. And we see that Fish sees herself as doing Falcone a favor, giving him a way out before someone else takes him out lethally.

But then Penguin reveals that Liza was Fish’s girl all along, and Falcone exacts a terrible price for this betrayal, finding himself reinvigorated by the act. I find it very rich that he talks about how he can forgive all manner of of deception and betrayal, having killed a man as he begged for mercy at the beginning of this episode, having killed the man responsible for guarding his lost reserve of money a couple episodes back, and now having choked Liza to death with his own two hands, while he was having Zasz’s people slaughter Fish’s crew. And the murderer actually has the gall to talk about right and wrong, and the fate he has in mind for Fish and Butch (who killed his own childhood friend last episode, sucker) does not promise to be gentle. And Penguin is right there, gloating.

Of course, Penguin might be in some hot water too as, during a delirium following the Electrocutioner’s first attack on Maroni (which I am not certain how that one did not work out…), he revealed that he had important business with Falcone. Now Maroni’s suspicions are aroused. Uh-oh!

And poor Bullock! “You think. You’ve been careful. So far?”

The Flash

Flash-TV-Show-Teaser-TrailerHaving just faced, and been utterly defeated by, the monster from his childhood, his mother’s murderer, Barry is training hard, trying to go faster, faster, faster, faster, FASTER!!! This quest is practically consuming his whole life, and it’s easy to see why. His worst nightmare has come calling and represents a clear and present danger to everyone he loves. I would be doing everything I could too, to prepare for next time.

In this, he has the strong support of his friends at Star Labs. Wells gets so excited at Barry’s progress that he even nearly lets slip that he is not crippled at all. (just what is that sick sociopath preparing Barry for, anyway?) Cisko throws his all both into developing machines for Barry to test himself against, but also developing technology to assist the police, lightening Barry’s load. Caitlin is a bit hesitant, but she’s also on her own quest to find and help her fiance, so her efforts are divided.

Things between Barry and Iris are a bit awkward in the wake of his confession to her, and in light of her impending move-in with Eddie. They manage to find a certain balance, though, and Barry even moves back in with her dad.

And as for this week’s antagonists, Captain Cold brings in Heat Wave to assist in his master plan. He has designs, to reign supreme in his chosen kingdom. They pose a serious threat, particularly when they surprise the police with Heat Wave’s presence and kidnap Caitlin to draw the Flash out into the public eye. Barry has his hands full trying to get their weapons to cross beams (personally, I would just take the guns straight out of their hands, but I’m like that), but then, at the pivotal moment, he figures out that the answer to this is not to go faster, but to go slower. A revelatory moment, and an important step for Barry.

Oh, and the Rogues, it seems, are being introduced one at a time, with teasers for the next one to be introduced at the end of each “Rogue” episode. Sweet!

Arrow

arrow-season-3-logo-0001Oliver Queen is dead.

And exactly as this happens, a major crime lord is making a play to take over the Glades. This guy has a thing, where he gives his enemy a gun with one bullet to kill him with if they want to stay alive. And his name, Brick, is very apt, as he is built like a freaking tank! He goes straight through Diggle, Team Arrow’s muscle guy, almost like he isn’t even there! And to add to his physical power, he’s clever, stealing the evidence bins of a bunch of thugs it took the Arrow and the cops eight months to put away, unleashing the lot of them all at once. Instant army! And one he can control, as he’s keeping the evidence to hold over each and every one of them.

The timing could not be worse, as Malcom Merlyn finds his scheme has failed and delivers the news to Team Arrow. Felicity kept hoping, but she is crushed by Olly’s death, even as Laurel refuses to believe Olly is, this time, gone for good. Digs and Roy don’t even know if they’re going to continue Olly’s quest, but Felicity has left. She even tells Ray, working on his ATOM suit, that his plan is suicidal, and refuses to help him any further.

All Hell is on the verge of breaking loose again, and the city’s best protectors are already shattered. And Merlyn is ready to take his daughter and flee the assassins he knows will come for him. Of course, as he has already thrown Thea under the bus to force Olly to fight his battle for him, I have little sympathy for Merlyn’s plight. Thea, on the other hand, is once again being lied to on all sides, and about her brother, to boot. If things go badly for her again, she could be really psychologically scarred.

There is still some hope, as Roy hasn’t quit just yet. And Ray’s suit is almost complete. And Laurel has suited up as Black Canary. The name has not yet been given, but as her sister was the Canary and her mentor was Wildcat, it’s plain to see she’ll be naming herself after the both of them. Unfortunately, she is not a fighter. She managed to surprise and take down a pair of thugs, but even I can see there was no grace to her movements, no efficiency. Just brute force, which Laurel does not have in abundance.

And, best of all, Olly’s old friend, Maseo, comes to his rescue, taking him from the cliff, dragging him some distance, to find his wife (or possibly ex-wife, as I believe they are not together anymore). When Olly wakes, Maseo says he asked her to come, “to bring you back to life.”

If that is taken at face value, then Olly was dead after all. It could take some time for him to recover from that.

Worse, though, I fear we can guess what happened five years ago. If Maseo and his wife are alive, but separated, such that Maseo takes the name “Phantom” because he is “empty,” then there is but one possibility left: I fear Maseo lost his son, and we have yet to witness it. I can’t really think of anything worse than losing your little boy.

Reign

Reign_intertitleBad news: the Catholic church itself is stepping in to clean up the Protestants, and claiming that any who bear the Mark of the Riders must be put to death. As this includes Conde, the Catholics are after his life now. Mary spirits him away, to the protection of his brother, but they are caught and brought back. Fortunately, Francis and Bash have schemed a way to force the Catholics to abandon their hunt, but branding the gay lover of the Cardinal in question, risking the sin of putting an innocent man to death in order to force the church to withdraw. A risky gamble, and one which has also left a mark.

Francis has his kingdom back, all to himself now.

Of course, like most moral men, he can’t forgive himself for the choices he made, which led to his castle’s invasion and his wife’s rape. Mary has had some trouble dealing with the aftereffects of the trauma, but she manages to pull herself back together, and in the service of others. She could not contemplate touching anyone, but she had to grip Conde’s hand as they burnt off the Mark of the Riders. She was caught up in her own pain, but finally, in defending Francis, saw his perspective at last, and now wants to put things back together. Or, at least, she’s ready to try.

So Francis and Mary have both risen again from the ashes of their suffering.

Just as Bash and Kenna hit a rough spot, as she’s become jealous of Claude, and worried for the secrets Bash keeps from her. Unable to console her in her fears, he admits a most wretched thing about himself: he lies and kills when it is expedient. That is who he is. So, as Claude repays Kenna’s protection of her life with vicious words, including revealing their previous intimacies with one another, their relationship is dealt a severe blow. They were thrown together at the insane whim of a madman, but they have forged a real relationship with each other. It’s heartbreaking when something that rose from such grim circumstances, to become so good, is now threatened.

And they haven’t quite finished the triangle between Leith, Greer, and Castleroy, apparently. As Leith has proven most noble, and is in close proximity to Greer, and even, to top things off, they find themselves having unwittingly walked into a rather lascivious party, things are pretty awkward for them. Greer may or may not be jealous, but Leith certainly begs her not to be, lest she give him hope for a renewal of their past relationship. Dangerous waters, that.

I think my least favorite part of this episode was when Conde was hooked up with another woman, and though he refused because another (Mary) has his heart, he relented when she blindfolded him and encouraged an indulgence in a dangerous fantasy. It smacks to me of something insincere. Perhaps I just remember X2 because I commented on it recently, but I remember when Mystique tried to seduce Wolverine, taking the form of various female X-Men, particularly Jean. Wolverine refused, because he had something more than lust for Jean, more than mere, fleeting, carnal desire. By contrast, here, Conde indulges his base desires, which can only inflame them all the more. These, too, are dangerous waters.

Grimm

grimm_title_cardJust how twisted is is to arrest/kidnap, torment, try, and murder someone for living in peace? That’s exactly what the Wesenrein to do Munroe in this episode, as they’ve done to countless others throughout their history. Laws exist to protect peace, do they not? To protect the people who live in peace? So to judge and kill Munroe for living in peace with Nick and for loving Rosalee, instead of judging any number of other wesen who actively hurt their fellow creatures, is nothing short of perverse.

Major kudos to Bud in this episode. He was kidnapped and made to stand as a witness in the Wesenrein’s sick kangaroo court, but he pulled through. It was nerve-wrackingly hilarious when he was first questioned and rambled his responses, but, after inducting Wu into the world of the wesen, he managed a good bit of dignity and courage. In the face of those sick sociopaths, Bud’s act of courageous defiance, particularly considering his usual, fearful demeanor, was nothing short of inspiring. He may be afraid, but he is no coward. Bravo.

And how about when Munroe’s wife and friends managed to get a location for that tribunal? That moment, when they are all lined up, walking side by side, to go and rescue him, was one of those moments where we knew the Wesenrein were about to get some seriously well-deserved comeuppance. Between Nick the Grimm, Renard the half-hexenbiest, Juliette the new hexenbiest, the gun-toting Hank and Wu, Rosalee the fox, and the released Munroe the wolf… yyyyeeeeeah, the cult of hatred did not stand a real chance anymore, ya know? Driven home as they arm up, the officers discarding their badges, fully prepared to kill to get Munroe back.

And I loved all the moments they gave the characters, especially having Munroe and Rosalee take down that grand master together.

Now, if only they’d had Trubel with them, they’d have had a complete set! (ok, technically not really complete without Nick’s and Renard’s mothers, but they’ve not been main characters anyway) That said, they did have Grimm, wesen, and human fighting side-by-side, united. Nick’s group, focused on unity and protection, really is the antithesis of the Wesenrein, who are focused on hatred and hurting.

Oh, and I love the moment where Nick and Hank take a full police escort to get Munroe and Rosalee to the airport and off on their honeymoon. And keeping such straight faces as they joke about accompanying them! LOL!

So, Wu goes to the trailer to study up, possibly a little too obsessively, but that’s understandable. He needs to prepare himself with a firm grasp on how the world is.

And as for Juliette… well, she’s in trouble. She has only something to fear, something dangerous, in her transformation. But she puts it aside until her friends are safe. And then she looks for help from the only one she can: Captain Renard. Best of luck to her!

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