Saturday, May 16, 2015

Grimm "Cry Havoc" Review

If Grimm could maintain the pace, the intensity, the urgency, and the emotion of episodes during season’s launch and May sweeps it’d be a near-great genre show. Grimm bogs down in procedural storytelling for half a season, in between serialized episodes, and it’s fine because Grimm’s a procedural-based series. It’s a genre procedural in the style of ANGEL’s first season that never tried to repeat ANGEL’s evolution as a story. ANGEL abandoned the case-of-the-week formula in the second season and never returned to it. If the writers told a stand-alone case-of-the-week story, it involved and revolved around the characters, whereas Grimm’s writers develop short fairy tale inspired stories about characters that appear and will (almost always) never appear after the episode ends.

“Cry-Havoc” doesn’t have any of what drags down Grimm in mid-season. It carried the craziness from “Headache” and didn’t stop. Okay, it stopped during Renard’s scenes. Renard’s miserable Jack-the-Ripper sublot that lasted decades continued as two cops the viewer never saw before investigated the homicides. I’d like for those two to become active detectives in cases that Nick and Hank don’t reach first. Grimm could do a solid arc that challenged Nick’s role as a cop and as a grimm. Nick announced he wouldn’t be a cop as he tracked down Kenneth and Juliette. Wu, too, removed the badge. The end of the season, with the amazing and unnecessary reappearance of the FBI agent, may lead to an arc that challenges Nick’s dual roles in society. Who knows, though.

Kelly’s death motivated Nick. He used the badge in his search for Kenneth. Kenneth, an impressive villain and a far more active than Viktor or Renard’s brother, doesn’t last long against Nick. Their fight included Nick low-blowing the Prince—a first for a choreographed fight that I’ve watched, and I’ve watched many choreographed fights. I feel frustrated when an antagonist can battle a specialized and unique super-powered person for minutes. Nick basically owns him in the fight and finishes him off with a spear through the neck. Nick moved on to finding Juliette afterwards. Juliette spent much of the episode with the King and Diana. Juliette fluctuated between regretful and villain. Her possible last scene is confusingly constructed. Juliette left in the helicopter; however, the King’s thrown from the copter by Meisner. Juliette is nowhere inside the helicopter. Nick found her in his house. They converse about Kelly, Juliette’s role in setting his mother up, and Juliette seems apologetic and regretful.

Of course, the scene is bonkers. Nick strangled Juliette…and strangled…and strangled…and…. He didn’t kill her. Nick’s reluctance to kill Juliette turned Juliette into full-on villain. She hexenbiested out, slapped him around, threw him through the front window, and lifted her claw to finish the job. Trubel, after Juliette said “I’m getting started” or something along those threatening lines, said she’d finish it. Juliette took two arrows, one in the chest, and one near the neck. She seemingly died in Nick’s arms. Juliette turned once again from hell bitch goddess into sorrowful Juliette. Did she die? I think so. Kelly died off-screen, so Juliette’s on-screen death looked final. Could the writers have redeemed Juliette during season five? Yes. Her insane transformation during season four stemmed from Nick/Adalind, and her hatred towards the gang for bringing her into their crazy world. It’s an incomplete story.

I wonder will the King’s death mean the end of the narratively vacant Royals story. I don’t think so. The Royals have involvement in the story beyond the baby. If I recall correctly, they want the Keys. Viktor’s still around if Alexis Denisof ever returns. Whatever, though. Renard was uninvolved because of the stupid Ripper storyline.

Trubel’s a brutal badass grimm. Nick looked shocked after she shot two arrows into Juliete. No one knew she returned. The element of surprise allowed her to strike Juliette when she had Nick down and ready to die by her hand. I couldn’t be less excited by the return of Chavev, and even less excited that it was the cliffhanger. At least it may blow up Nick’s world and force him to choose between the Law and the law.

I’ll see in the fall.

Other Thoughts:

-That’s Grimm season 4. It was a mixed season. The end of the season was great. Most of the season didn’t hit a groove. Rosalee and Monroe were underutilized. I thought Bree Turner was awesome in the second half of the season.

-Renard and Hank used Kenneth to end the Jack the Ripper investigation. That’s fine. If Renard spent 15 episodes next season shifting uncomfortably while receiving updates about the case, I would’ve ate a bar of steel weekly.

-Will I write about Grimm next season? Most likely. I’ll spend my summer in seclusion atop the Besh Barmag Mountain in Azerbaijan contemplating the question of whether to write about season five of Grimm or not.


-Thomas Ian Griffith wrote the episode. Norbeto Barba directed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Although you need an editor, I still think yours are, all in all, the most astute comments I have seen re Cry Havoc.

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Originally, I titled the blog Jacob's Foot after the giant foot that Jacob inhabited in LOST. That ended. It became TV With The Foot in 2010. I wrote about a lot of TV.