This Week on TV, Dec. 12, 2015

Spoiler Alert!

…like, seriously, guys! These are the fall/winter finales for all these shows, all of them. Pretty significant stuff tends to happen when you can, in any capacity, apply the word “finale” to it, ya know?

Once-upon-time-logoOnce Upon a Time

“Swan Song”

I’m not going to lie, this episode left me so mad at a number of a people!

And that’s both the characters who made certain choices and the show-runners who dictated those choices!

I will elaborate on that in just a moment.

Picking right up where the last episode ended, I was right about how bad the situation was, but not quite about the nature of the peril our heroes faced. I just thought that the resurrected Dark Ones would be able to start running amok in every corner of Storybrooke simultaneously. But they aren’t actually “alive” just yet, and need to trade places with people who are. Yes, for the rightfully damned to come back to life, they must send the undeserving heroes to Hell. Or, more specifically, the Underworld, which, according to Rumple, is so much worse than mere burning brimstone.

With the heroes, Emma’s family and most of her friends in this world, all marked and condemned to die and be dragged screaming to the Underworld within a couple hours… character truly is revealed. Everyone deals with it in their own way, with their own evident priorities. For the most part, their last acts are selfless: Henry and the Charmings have one last supper at Granny’s, Regina confronts Zalina with her new belief in herself, protecting Robin’s new infant child by exiling her back to Oz, while Robin arranges for the younger children (Roland, Neal, and his new daughter) to be cared for by the fairies, Rumple gives Belle the chance to leave Storybrooke and see the world, safe from the rampaging Dark Ones, and Emma quickly hatches a plan to absorb all of the Darkness with Excalibur and sacrifice her own life to save all of them. As you see, largely selfless.

A wise man, named James Lane Allen, once said, “Adversity does not build character, it reveals it.” With “The End” looming nigh, it’s a perfect backdrop to learn a little of Hook’s history with his father. He loved and idolized the man, who taught him about bravery and light and choosing what sort of man he would be, but then he and his brother Liam were abandoned, sold into servitude so their father could flee for his life, alone. For a bit there, I was hoping he could have at least had a good reason, like safeguarding his sons from his enemies while leaving them in the care of men who, at the very least, would protect and provide for them. Unfortunately, like his nemesis Rumplestiltskin, Killian Hook was simply cast aside by his father for purely selfish reasons.

When Regina wanted to “test” Hook, to make sure he could kill her mother, she took him to see his father, who had been under a sleeping curse, and ordered him to kill the man. Hook nearly went through with it, but upon hearing his father’s story of true love, loss, and redemption, he spared him. Grateful, his father only wished that Hook would find peace, which we saw he did at one point. But then Hook returned with papers for his father and the man’s new son, and saw him tucking the boy, also named Liam, into bed, saying the same words. It triggered a deep anger, reigniting his rage and malice. He killed his father that night. And so Hook chose the man he was: unforgiving in his anger, eternally centered on revenge.

That fixation manifested itself again, and he deprived Emma of the chance to sacrifice herself for her family. It was only at that pivotal moment, when he beheld the sight of Emma helpless and in pain, that he finally came back to himself, the Killian who loves Emma. He finally chose to be the man he wanted to be… and sacrificed himself in Emma’s place.

This all began when Emma refused to let him go, to let him die, so, after all the theater of scheming and hatred, they came around in a circle, back to Hook dying, as he should have the first time around. And this time, to make things right, she didn’t have to just let him die, she had to kill him herself, an act which left her in traumatizing agony.

And so the Darkness was finally defeated, and Emma Swan restored, albeit at the cost of one more life, and the destruction of Excalibur, the sword forged out of the Holy Grail by Merlin… so, in effect, the Grail has been destroyed.

It was a little off-putting when the very next scene was that of Belle returning, having seen the hero within Rumple and now knowing he was sending her off to live a happy life as his final act in this world, and kissing him. It felt a bit like “happily ever after… atop Hook’s fresh corpse.” Moments later, however, I found that was actually quite accurate, perhaps even deliberate.

See, when Emma and Regina came to take Excalibur from Rumple, he pulled a little trick, used a loophole to betray them all yet again. When Hook gathered the Darkness into the sword, he was redirecting it into another dagger, Rumple’s dagger, turning the man into the Dark One once again, and with all the power of all the past Dark Ones combined.

Emma is understandably furious and threatens to tell Belle the truth unless Rumple opens the way for her to go to the Underworld and rescue Hook, who died for nothing because of Rumple’s deception. She loves him still, and as she steps towards Charon’s ferry, with Snow, Charming, Regina, Robin, and Henry following, she says the words that have bound her family together since long before her birth, “I will always find you.”

Very potent (though technically she says, “we” not “I”).

So, who am I mad at?

Rumple, who willingly fell back into Darkness after finally being freed from it, becoming a villain so soon after becoming a hero. Seriously, couldn’t they think of something better for him to do than be evil again? Come on, couldn’t they have at least made it so he was gearing up to challenge/bargain with the powers of the Underworld? Give him some selfless motivation again! That’s what made him such a great villain to begin with, because he was just trying to right his wrongs! (I am screaming in frustration)

Belle, who had perfect justification for ending things with Rumple, but now has come running right back to him. She wants to be with him, and I know, all too well, what it means to go back to the wrong person to love. She’s right back where she was two seasons ago, when she married a lying Dark One, and that path has already cause her tremendous suffering. Are they going to do that to her again?

Regina, I understand, was desperate and short on options. Still, she just returned Oz’s worst despot back to them, a move which, I am certain, is going to get a lot of people hurt.

Emma is, once again, refusing to let go of Hook when he dies. She’s going so far as to go into the Underworld, of her own volition, and she’s taking her family with her, including her son Henry. Seriously? In what world is that in any way a good idea?! Not to mention she’s using Belle to blackmail Rumple, which means leaving Belle with Rumple all unknowing!

And what happened to Arthur? And Guinevere? And was it just me, or did Merida mostly play bit parts in her introductory season? And are we ever going to see Lily again and find out who her father it?Sheesh! I hate loose threads!

On the bright side, going to the Underworld presents some very interesting possibilities. Regina, Hook, and Rumple all have large piles of people they’ve killed, so, while Rumple is staying behind, the other two will be coming face to face with their considerable sins. In fact, everyone who has ever died on the show, which is a long list, could show up! Graham, Neal, Liam, Peter Pan, Cora, Ingrid, Snow’s parents, Charming’s brother, Marian (the real one this time), Cruella, Merlin, the Apprentice, the list goes on and on and on! Including the freshly-angry souls of the Dark Ones! Our characters really could go through Hell this time! 🙂

And since they’ll be facing Hades, no doubt, maybe they’ll meet Hercules?

agentsofshieldseason3bannerAgents of Shield

“Maveth”

Crap, meet fan. Again.

On Earth, Mack shows his stripes as a capable leader and commander. The agents are in a tricky position, facing down a well-fortified position that is well-manned by well-armed enemies. They need to take the castle, secure the portal room for Coulson, Fitz, and (hopefully) Will to return safely, rescue Simmons, and, as it happens, protecting a dozen Inhumans that are brought into the compound. That’s a lot to handle, and everyone, with a wide range of experience and personalities, is confused, but Mack takes charge, really takes control, and leads them.

He balances out their objectives, and the obstacles they need to overcome, while sticking to the basics. He has Daisy find a discreet way in, through subterranean aqueducts. He keeps the big guns out of Hydra’s range and leads two teams to infiltrate. He, Morse, and Hunter secure the portal room, while May leads the Inhuman trio of Daisy, Lincoln, and Joey to find Simmons.

For once, things would have been better if Simmons had just stayed there and not fought, not escaped. In escaping, she was hunted, and when she found the Inhumans, she found Andrew/Lash as well. He convinced her to let him out of his cage, and he slaughtered Hydra soldiers… and all twelve of the Inhumans too, while they were helpless. She made a serious mistake, one which cost a great deal of innocent blood, and every life Lash takes from now on will be because… she let him out, to save herself. That’s going to weigh on everyone, but especially her and May, the latter of whom actually saw the carnage and the name of Lash’s victims. If Simmons had simply stayed where she was, as a captive, she’d have been found and rescued anyway.

Joey had a couple sweet moments as he’s learning the ropes on the job and growing strong enough to melt bullets as they’re flying towards him. Mind you, that would still hurt, very much, getting hit with high-velocity blobs of metal, but it beats being hit by fully formed bullets. I’m just hoping he doesn’t let his ego get the better of him.

With the entire Earth-side gang gathered in the portal room, Mack once again showed his stripes as a commander. Pooling knowledge and putting a few things together, such as how Daisy’s Inhuman mother, Jia-Ying, was terrified of the Monolith, they realize that It is far too dangerous to simply let It come through, yet they can’t abandon their people, because that is simply not in their nature. So Mack sends everyone back to the jet, sans the murdered Inhumans, putting May in charge. Only he and Daisy remain. If either Hydra gets in or It comes out of the portal, May is to unleash fiery death from above and reduce the castle to rubble. It’s another exemplary balancing of objectives in the middle of a dire situation.

Coulson chose very wisely indeed.

Still, Daisy wasn’t the best one to stay behind, as the portal chamber is kind of like her own localized kryptonite. She didn’t think it through, which is why she’s not yet fit for the position of Director.

For the other major portion of this episode, I have to say, they’re really good at telling a story in such a way that you figure out the foreboding mysteries just as they’re about to be revealed.

On the alien planet, Fitz leads Ward to first find Will and then to find the portal. Along the way, they find a Hydra statue, confirming the connection between It and the organization. When they do find Will, Fitz has to talk very fast to make sure Ward spares him. Still, the search for It seems to be fruitless. But there were some… discrepancies about the situation, the sort that made my hair stand on end.

The first clue was the blood. When Simmons got, like, a paper cut, It would come hunting for her within moments, the walking heart of an eternal storm. Yet, Fitz was bleeding, and It did not come. Then Will was found with a badly wounded leg, soaked in his own blood, and It was nowhere to be found. Then Will spilled the blood of Hydra soldiers, and Ward was shot several times, and all remained still. Something was off about that.

Other clues include the storms, no longer heralding It, and the No Fly Zone, where there was a storm, but It was not there. Then, of course, there was Will himself, killing the Hydra men so easily. Finally, he was unfazed by the ruins of the alien city, and even started talking freely about the people who built it, along with eight other cities (probably some Marvel trivia there), who had the chance to do something grand, but killed each other instead. He knew all this… because He was there. Fitz realizes this only as he goes to take a look at Will’s leg, to find the wound open to the bare bone and rotting. He’s not been talking to Will. He’s been talking to It.

Will died protecting Simmons from It, and It took Will’s fresh corpse.

That’s It’s power: to inhabit dead bodies. That’s what happened to Will’s crew, as It got to them, each of them dying and being taken over. What Simmons saw, that one time, was It wearing a dead astronaut. It must have been so frustrated with Will, surviving for so long, depriving it of a fresh meat suit to walk around in. And when, at last, It had the opportunity to escape It’s eternal prison, It made good on that opportunity, keeping up the facade of being Will, tying itself to Fitz to guide It to the portal, conjuring up the storm in the No Fly Zone so they could escape together. This creature is very clever and quick-thinking. With that power, and those wits, small wonder it was so feared and sent to another planet. Very unfortunate for that planet, though, as we can surmise it had a hand in its destruction and desolation.

Within spitting distance of the portal, as Coulson was occupied with his grudge match against Ward, the only thing stopping It from getting through, back to Earth, was Fitz. He shot Will’s body with bullets, then shot It with a flare, burning the body beyond utility.

Unfortunately, Coulson made one serious mistake, in his anger and ignorance.

When he was unconscious, he saw a vision of Rosalind, telling him to get up, because “They need you now. More than ever.” That got him on his feet, and he finished off Ward’s men. Then he caught up to Fitz and It just as the two were fighting, which is when Ward made his move. Coulson had the advantage though, and took Ward down. With the portal open, but closing, Coulson paused just long enough to kill Ward. He took revenge for Rosalind. But revenge is self-destructive, always, even and most especially for heroes.

Even as he was crushing Ward’s chest with his metal hand, I was going, “No, no, nononooooo!” Fitz had just defeated It, by destroying It’s vessel, leaving it trapped once again and without any other bodies handy to snatch, but Coulson handed It a new vessel, fresh and strong, right next to the portal! Fitz cut off It’s head, and Coulson provided It another one! (hmmm, so that’s where that comes from…)

Interesting how Ward had just come to the realization that he had a part in something greater, after choosing Hydra so many times for such selfish, petty reasons. He had finally become a true believer. And it seems his part, in the end, was to be It’s vessel, filled with knowledge of earth and Hydra. It appears before Malick, finally free of its long exile, back on a planet with billions of eventual corpses It can use.

And Malick is filled with triumph, as he says, “I’ll be damned.”

Yes, Malick. I do believe you will be.

So, Will is dead, the Inhuman are dead, Lash is loose and unaccounted for, and It has returned, wearing Ward’s body.

…and we have to wait to continue this season until… what was it, March? Amazing how long a wait can feel, but I have to say, they picked a pretty good spot for a bookmark, ya know?

And once the Holiday Drought is over, we can enjoy Season 2 of Agent Carter in the interim! Yay! 🙂

On which note… Carter is going to Hollywood?!

Flash-TV-Show-Teaser-TrailerThe Flash

“Running to Stand Still”

This was a really good Flash episode. Villainous intrigue, dire circumstances, an emotional wringer, and plenty of humor. 🙂

Weather Wizard resurfaces, drawn like a shark to the spilled blood of the Flash. He breaks out Captain Cold, to repay his debt, and the Trickster too, thinking the three of them can team-up to take speedster down. Now that would be a dangerous alliance. Captain Cold bowed out, and gave Barry a token warning, but the remaining duo was plenty dangerous enough. First they lured him into one trap he couldn’t run away from, and Patty walked into it too, so he had her hold tight to him while he waved his arms and flew them out. That was only the first move, however.

The real scheme was handing out bombs to children for them to take home. In effect, they held a hundred random families hostage all over the city. Barry’s only choice, then, was to let them do whatever they wanted to him, and Weather Wizard did not hold back. He’s grown even stronger than before, both more skillful, as he can now fly, and when he takes the wand designed to stop him, he’s even more powerful. He struck Barry with freaking lightning!

It was only Wells, Garrick, and Cisco working very fast and very brilliantly which saved his life. They located one bomb, sent it through a breach, and used it to magnetically draw all the other bombs after it (which had to be weird for all those kids to see their present flying out the window on its own). Just in the nick of time. And with his metaphorical hands now untied, Barry’s enemies had only enough to go, “Uh-oh,” before being hogtied for the police. Yay!

Related to Weather Wizard, Patty had to face her darkness in this episode. After four long years, she finally comes face to face with the man that murdered her father. She’s angry at herself too, blaming herself for skipping out on work that day, so her father took their money to the bank. She’d have died if she’d done differently, but she doesn’t care about that. She doesn’t care about herself in this matter. That’s how she comes so close to killing Weather Wizard, even knowing it would destroy her life. That is, until Barry, as the Flash, helps her to see how much there is in her life now, how much she would truly lose. Her father wouldn’t want her to lose all that. So she pulls back, and arrests the villain instead.

Meanwhile, Iris tells Barry, and together they tell Joe, about Wally. They don’t know where he is yet, but the weight of that knowledge falls hard on them. To these people, family is important, and that’s what makes them so magnificent. Joe needs some time to process this information, to wade through a sudden overwhelming guilt at what his selfishness must surely have cost his son. Finally, though, he is able to smile and look forward to meeting Wally.

Which comes straight at the end of the episode, when Wally shows up at the West’s Christmas party.

He’s a bit uneasy, of course, just walking into these people’s lives, and, as it happens, while they have company. He makes to turn around and leave, but Joe and Iris bring him in, with open arms.

Awwwww! 🙂

Garrick makes fun of Cait pretending he doesn’t know what Christmas is, and then not knowing what mistletoe is, which is cute and hilarious. They sort of bumble and stumble, with Cisco rolling his eyes at the awkwardness (“Just kiss!”). Patty is opening up to Barry, and Barry is supporting Patty. And Wells is being more and more accepted by the team.

Naturally, that happens exactly when Zoom has decided to begin extorting Wells, holding his daughter Jessie’s life as leverage. Wells has figured out Zoom’s plan, to make Barry faster and faster, with more and more of the Speed Force saturating his cells, so there’s more for Zoom to steal, as he stole it from Garrick. That’s why he’s so much faster than Barry, and that’s why he can’t stand for there to be any other speedsters anywhere he can reach: because he wants to hoard all of the power for himself.

On the subject of the speedsters, we now have Barry, we had the Reverse-Flash, and we have a former speedster in Garrick. Both Wally and Jessie are meant to be speedsters, and about the only one left I can think of is another one from the future. As more speedsters pop up, I wonder if they can defeat Zoom simply by outnumbering him. I’m sure it’ll be more involved than that, but it’s cool to think about.

Arrow-logo-header-Season-4Arrow

“Dark Waters”

Noooooo!

I mean, I want Olicity to end already, but noooooo!

Olly’s “out in the open” fight to save Star City is gaining traction. They’re cleaning up the city down by the bay, a collection of volunteers, including a number of children, when Damien makes good on his threats. He sends a drone to shoot at everyone, hospitalizing several before Felicity can hack it and bring it down. The war finally leaks into broad open daylight now, and Team Arrow retaliates by exposing Damien to the public eye, an act which makes him very angry.

Damien openly attacks the Christmas/Holiday party in Olly’s home, killing security, sending Olly flying, displaying his powers, and kidnapping Felicity, Thea, and Digs. Driven to enraged desperation, Olly uses a phone Malcolm gives him to get in touch with Damien and trade himself for their lives. Of course, Damien had no intention of ever honoring that agreement, and made to kill all three of them in front of Olly, in a gas chamber.

Two very fortunate things happen at that moment. Malcolm and Laurel arrive, with Lance bringing the cops in right behind them, and together they all manage to escape. The second thing is… Damien is successful. It was implied that the gas chamber was being used to test poison, but instead, it was being used to test the toxicity of the air in a massive underground chamber, filled with… corn? Ok, not following what’s going on here, but apparently they were trying to clean up the air using a certain algae, and the people who went into the gas chamber were like a miner’s canary. As it happens, this intended death sentence was, in fact, a successful test of the air, and that’s why everyone was spared.

Having confronted Damien and HIVE head-on and lived to tell the tale, Olly goes to light up a Christmas tree. And, as it happens, propose to Felicity!

That was the moment when I knew she was doomed.

Her mother stumbles onto the ring Olly’s been keeping, and screams with delight. Felicity has it running around her brain, making her act even funnier than usual, until she realizes that Olly was going to propose to her three months ago (we are now halfway between the beginning of this season, and when we find Olly and Barry standing at a grave), at which point, she begins to wonder why he hasn’t. Olly has to face some of his insecurities, his fears, and those fears can be pretty legitimate where Damien is concerned. However, their relationship is well-known, the entire team are already targets, and they made the conscious choice for that, Felicity as much as the rest. In fact, Damien has already made his move, so the danger can’t simply be avoided. Better to spend their lives happily united.

The issue of protecting someone or letting someone else protect you is a big theme in this episode. Olly wants to protect his family, especially Felicity, while Malcolm wants to protect Thea, and Lance protects Laurel, as she finds out what lengths he’s gone to for that. There’s no clear, easy, happy answer. In the end, it comes down to this: there are dangers which we can neither protect nor be protected from, they can only be met. That doesn’t always end well. That’s life. And death.

We can’t just stay safe. We can only be free, or not, and relatively safe from some things.

Mere moments after Felicity accepts Olly’s proposal, they’re attacked by more Ghosts shooting up their limo. The driver dies, Olly tries to shield Felicity and then he climbs into the front seat to drive for safety, he pulls her out… but she is limp and bleeding in his arms.

While Damien joins his family for Christmas. They are held in the arms of a murderer.

Ok, that is huge. Damien clearly has people he sort of answers to, and now we see he has a family. That is something that can be exploited, as he has done to others.

In other news, Digs and his brother are at odds, of course, and we have more flashbacks. Olly takes his new lady friend, who wants to kill the people who killed her brother – I imagine this will include Olly – on a little field trip. I knew from the start it was a mistake to bring her out into the open on a very long trek across the island. Yes, he needs her expertise at diving, but she could have taught him that in the relative safety of the cave. Taking her with him was just begging to be caught, which Conklin and several of his men do. Fortunately, Olly at least got the survey maps from the Amazo. Still in pristine condition despite a couple years underwater, but whatever. Plot device, story advances. And he got attacked by a shark on the way back, which explains another scar.

Ok, Once Upon a Time, as ticked off as I am, still found a good place to stop and place the mid-seasonal bookmark. Agents of Shield did that superbly, and The Flash did a fair job. Arrow did not. I want to throttle the Arrow people! The other shows all gave us a good place for press pause, as the Holiday Drought automatically does. But Arrow seems to like its cliffhangers, complete with characters who are, or should be, dead. This is at least the third time time in a row they’ve done it.

In Season 1, Olly met the Black Archer for the first time, nearly got himself killed, but at least that time he was confirmed as still alive, and he learned about the dangerous power he was unwittingly opposing. Season 2, Roy was drugged with mirakuru and Barry was hit with lightning in the final moments of the episode, as we saw Sebastian Blood reporting to Slade Wilson. Season 3, Olly was run through with a sword and pushed off the side of a cliff by Ra’s al’Ghul. Now, Season 4, this. We see Felicity shot and bleeding, as we start learning what Damien and HIVE are really up to.

grimm_title_cardGrimm

“Wesen Nacht”

Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like rampant chaos, bloodshed, and destruction, eh?

After Trubel gets her bearings, she gives Nick and Adalind the twenty-cent summary of what she’s been up to. The Resistance seems to call itself Hadrian’s Wall, and she’s been working with them. They pay her, give her cool toys like the motorcycle of death (she was so disappointed when she found Nick had already discovered the harpoon/spear thing!) and she goes around the world fighting rogue wesen, a group that is pretty much everywhere. She lets them know how the HW has been keeping an eye on Nick and Adalind both, not that that seems to have come in handy at all as of yet, and we see she found Nick through her bike’s internet connection. Grimms are in high demand right now – I’m guessing the HW do not get along with Reapers – and Trubel knows of at least two others who are working with them. Basically, she’s hoping Nick will join up with them too.

Trubel’s come a long way since she was a drifting, traumatized runaway, but she’s still always moving from place to place, leaving unsavory wesen dead in her wake.

Nick is more stable than that, and while I’m certain the HW would benefit from Nick’s help, I’m not certain that working for them is the best idea. I mean, Trubel’s only still alive because Nick maintained a safe place to stay, a haven rooted in one place, in short: a home. Jetting around the world fighting the good fight may seem romantic, but people have a human need for a safe place they can fall back to, and stay, and rest in.

Seeing the emotional relief of these two, a graduated student and her first mentor, is proof enough of that. Also, Nick doesn’t need to keep any secrets from Trubel, but Trubel is clearly keeping some from him, about Juliette’s final fate, about how she went back to Nick’s place specifically for Juliette, and she clearly knows what’s going on with Diana but keeping it from Adalind.

Speaking of, I enjoyed the two of them talking. They haven’t had much interaction at all, so seeing some peaceful discourse between them was refreshing. Not to mention, Trubel straight up asking Adalind if she’s in love with Nick, and Adalind stumbling and stuttering through a non-answer. I’m guessing she has feelings, but doesn’t really know a thing about what to do with feelings like that, especially in the very complicated relationship she already has with Nick.

But as I was saying about the benefits of staying in one place and building a home, Nick has something most other Grimms don’t have: direct connections to the wesen community, through his friends Bud, Munroe, and Rosalee. Portland is not a safe place, but for Nick and his friends, it much safer than it could be.

That, right there, is part of what drives home the danger, the true threat of the approaching OTL revolution. Apparently, a lot of the riots and wars throughout history have actually been wesen instigated, and they’re repeating that now. A huge inter-gang effort across several cities happens all at once, as OTL gangs attack certain wesen-owned businesses, smashing them to pieces, and any business owners who happen to be there are beaten to a pulp, or outright killed, and one of them is kidnapped. These are well-known people in the wesen community, friends of Nick’s friends, and Munroe’s friend, a baker, is taken and shown a picture of Munroe.

I know you can never really know what you’ll do until that moment, but, frankly, I’d rather die with a clear conscience than live with a dirty one. Besides which, barring their way to my friend strikes me as the only form of retaliation I’d have left. Munroe’s friend, apparently, lacked such nerves. He sold others out to save his own life.

The first clue I had of that was, of course, his magical escape and return to his bakery. After that, his story was at odds with what we saw. He recognized but did not identify the local ringleader, but he did identify the number two, a young woman. He needed a bit of persuading from Munroe and Rosalee, who are grateful for the distraction from trying to keep their community calm and collected despite a sudden climate of fear, but he identified her. Still, I wasn’t quite certain until I noticed the exact same pattern when Nick and Hank interrogated her: resist, don’t cooperate, don’t make it easy… but give in, surrender, spoon feed them what they’ve worked so hard for. When kidnapper and kidnapped are behaving that similarly, there is something very, very wrong.

She leads them into a trap. Nick’s able to pick up on it a moment before it springs, and this is confirmed when Rosalee calls them after hearing their friend’s tear-stained confession. But they’re already surrounded and way outnumbered. Even the mightiest of warriors can only do so much, ya know? They’re clever about it, running, finding a defensible position, hatching hasty plans, fighting as carefully, precisely, and fiercely as possible. Still, the odds are very far against them… that is until the cavalry arrives.

Sent to quell the local uprising, courtesy of Meisner and the HW, a familiar face, a woman who levitates her enemies and drops them, screaming, from great heights, with powers far greater than anything she had before, none other than… Juliette?!

I did not see that one coming! How is she still alive? How is she so much stronger now? How is she not trying to kill Nick? How is she tamed by Meisner and the HW? How is her hair always changing colors?!

…and the many-questioned cliffhanger of this semi-finale makes me want to throttle someone! 😉

Finally, small bits of news, Wu helps figure things out, and I wonder if we’ll be seeing that curly blonde again, while Renard is recording his endorsement for his friends’ mayoral campaign… and making a charming, attractive woman laugh while at it. Romantic interest, anyone?

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