Saturday, February 4, 2012

Grimm "Organ Grinder" Review

Slowly, slowly, slowly, Grimm is advancing to an interesting and engaging place. Nick WANTS to reveal the Grimm world to Juliette. Hank NOTICES Portland's gotten weirder in recent months. Capt. Renard WANTS to engage in fisticuffs with the merry band of Reapers. Grimm's in no hurry to actually arrive at these places though. Once again, the best parts of the episode amounted to a little less than 7-10 minutes of screentime; however, the case-of-the-week had enough action and decent characterization to make for a satisfying episode of television.

The creatures-of-the-week were the Geiers, a species known for harvesting human organs. The reasons for the harvesting of human organs is disgusting. Essentially, our fairy tale creatures are herbalists, as well as fans of aphrodisiacs, and human organs are great for remedies...and other things. The Geier clan ran a free clinic in downtown Portland. The Geiers preyed on young homeless people because no one would notice that they disappeared and were never heard from again. Perhaps that's why the dinner scene between Nick, Juliette, Gracie and Hanson was effective, because Nick noticed them and didn't treat them like pieces in a case but, rather, like actual human beings who needed a good meal, good company, and sense of trust (Gracie and Hanson are siblings with the boy found in the teaser).

The motivations of the Geiers aren't complicated. The guise of a free clinic establishes a sense of trust between the poor souls who use it for care, and the geier physicians who just want their organs. Also, a simple google search of 'organ black market' turns up several results about the existence of these markets. My review for "Organ Grinder" will transform into a research paper. Hank looked at the jars of organs with an expression that conveyed sadness, but his face turned into a grimace and a 'what-the-hell-is-this,' and confirmed his own assertion that the town's gotten weirder. I expected a sentiment along the lines of 'how awful this is that human beings were killed just for the organs." Oh well.

Grimm wrote Nick like the hero he's supposed to be in "Organ Grinder." In the past, Nick's been an inactive and passive character in the cases-of-the-week. Nick's been learning how to be both cop and grimm on the go, and he's close to reconciling his professional life with his personal/Grimm life. I thought Nick was outstanding during the action-packed conclusion to the A story. Nick didn't mess around. At the free clinic raid, he told a Geier that he wouldn't behave like a cop with her, because he's a Grimm and his purpose is to kick the asses of Geiers and Blutbads and all of the other creatures who try to harm or murder members of the human race. Nick LED the raid on the organ-harvesting grounds. Nick wanted to be honest with Juliette about the other part of his life, for her own safety, and because he loves her. David Guintoli was game for whatever was asked of him; his presence as the lead of Grimm was strong; he seemed like he owned the show. In other words, he tapped into his inner-David Boreanaz. Indeed, Nick resembled that vampire-with-a-soul in that he could be charming and empathetic, but also a complete badass and capable of finding out what he needed to know WHEN he wanted to know. I really enjoyed Nick's portrayal in "Organ Grinder."

Monroe and Nick's friendship's progressed to a place where they calmly eat dinner together, even though the conversation's always about random creatures and their blood habits. I think the series will be much stronger if the writers decide to bring the two worlds, and their characters, together. Silas Weir Mitchell is the most charismatic actor in Grimm, and Monroe's the best character. It must be difficult for the writing staff to think of ways to involve Monroe directly in the action each week without becoming repetitive. If the two worlds merge, terrific drama should emerge as well, which would be good. The most drama Grimm's had was the ogre's beatdown of Nick.

Capt. Renard's a significant character once more. The Reapers sent him the ear he cut off in the "Pilot," as a warning for Renard to keep his Grimm in line. Renard's an ambiguous figure; he's invested in the safety of Grimm, yet he has a dialogue with these creatures. I wouldn't mind a Capt. Renard-centric episode to learn more about him. Grimm needs this kind of intrigue and mystery. I don't care about waiting as long as the payoff's worth it. "Organ Grinder," as a stand-alone," is on par with the terrific "Let Your Hair Down."

Other Thoughts:

-It's refreshing to watch Juliette do more than cook Nick dinner. Juliette formed a bond with Gracie. She used her intuition to create a bond of trust between herself and the homeless teenage girl; in fact, the dinner scene juxtaposed the free clinic scenes. Both were about establishing trust, but only two people were genuine with the homeless youths.

-Gracie and Hanson ate their dinner as intensely as a gazelle running from a lion in the Sahara desert.

-Clark Mathis directed the episode. The action scenes were terrific. Bravo, Mr. Mathis.


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About The Foot

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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.