Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Grimm "The Kiss" Review

The cliffhangers from "Bad Teeth" are resolved in the teaser/first act/whatever-the-heck-it-is-called-in-the-industry-these-days. The resolutions aren't too great, but the aftermath allows for slick and terrific storytelling. The Mauvais Dentes dies painfully but without answering the question Nick and his mom need answered: who sent him? Nick uses the magic eye drops on Juliette, which is supposed to prevent memory loss, and leaves before hospital security escorts him, his mother, Rosalee and Monroe from the hospital and its premises. The resolutions prove the resolutions were essentially meaningless. Juliette remains comatose; the Mauvais Dentes will be forgotten. What really matters is unresolved.

Grimm received criticism for its decision to make Nick a cop and a Grimm. Some felt Nick's profession was unnecessary, that the department would complicate the storytelling, and blah blah. Even I had reservations about Nick-as-detective. Around episode ten or eleven, I wrote a decent sized rant about the problems of Grimm, among which was the Nick-as-detective choice, because the storytelling relied too much on boring procedural stories week in and week out. The series seemed to be stuck. Grimm basically took off a few weeks after my rant. The two worlds blended together. The action was exciting. Grimm became riveting television, the kind of show I knew Greenwalt and Kouf were capable of making. So, what happened in "The Kiss" was like placing a plate of authentic jerk chicken in front of me; it was essentially everything I've been waiting for.

The case-of-the-week was the investigation of the two murdered FBI agents and the dead Mauvais Dentes. Nick's two worlds mixed together uncomfortably. Season 1 was about discovery for Nick. Season 2 seems like it's building on the theme of discovery, except that it's about eluding discovery. Nick looked awkward when he realized the evidence would point to him if he didn't act quickly. The moment the feds found out the female agent called Nick, her last call before she was murdered, he tossed the gun in a river and thought of the reason the agent would call her without giving away the real reason. Nick avoids prison and further investigation. The feds don't buy his story, but they lack the evidence to tie the Mauvais Dentes murder to him. Nick wonders why the feds care so much about who killed the Mauvais Dentes when the focus should be on the fallen FBI agents.

Nick's mother is the reason his life becomes chaotic for a 24-48 hour period. Nick worked carefully to keep his different lives separate. His mother, though, is undisciplined. She kills folk without blinking an eye. Years of merciless Grimm-ness, or whatever, made the habit of killing hard to break. Both of her fights end in a murder, which her son investigates, causing him to constantly invent lies and reasons for such and such. Nick, with some exasperation, tells his mom it's weird that he's investigating himself and her. She decides to leave with the coins, to free her son from the burden of the added responsibility of covering for her.

Mother and son share a moment which contradicts the guidance of Aunt Marie before she died, though. Aunt Marie was sort of the generic genre lady of knowledge. Nick heard things any person of knowledge in a genre show would tell his or her apprentice or what-have-you. Specifically for Nick, he needed to cut all ties with the people he loved or cared for because he'd put each one in danger. His mother advises him against leaving the people he loves. Nick recalls what Aunt Marie told him. Nick's mother stands firm in her words. The absence of the people his mother love hardened her. Life and death is as valuable as a glass of orange juice; whether it spills or not makes as much difference as whether a Blutbad or Hexenbiest or any other kind of creature dies or lives. Rosalee beams when she sees Nick's mother smile. Nick would become his mother if he let go of the people he love.

The rules of the Grimm constantly changed on Nick's watch. The pacifist creatures were shocked and suspicious over Nick's benevolent ways. He never looked for a fight and only used violence during a case or when Adalind or someone threatened his friends or girlfriend in his free time. Nick's friendship with Monroe and Rosalee surprises his mother because Grimms and creatures were always opposed; however, Nick's brought people together and formed a makeshift community with the non-aggressive types, the ones who just want to work, support their families, and live peacefully without the threat of death whenever a Grimm wanders through town. Grimms and creatures can live in harmony. Nick's mother doesn't want her son to lose that part of himself; she even wishes he could live a normal life. She's like a soldier who's been in war for too long and can't shake the habits of war, and she sees Nick still has a chance. It doesn't have to be the way it is. Nick can change things, and that's a journey I'm looking forward to watching.

Other Thoughts:

-We learned Renard's brother is the character portrayed by James Frain. I didn't mention Frain last week. I was one of 26 people to watch The Cape and thought Frain was horrible in his villainous role. I didn't particularly like his work in True Blood either, but, of course, Alan Ball turns good-to-decent actors into rubbish. Hopefully Frain's character works out. He does live in a castle after all.

-Renard drinks a white liquid that will make him pure of heart. A prince needs to kiss Juliette to wake her up. He's part of one of the royal family and barely human. His motives continue to be murky. We're learning more about him little by little.

-Juliette wakes up after the kiss with no memory of Nick. Oh joy, an amnesia storyline. I loathe amnesia storylines. Hopefully she remembers within 1 minute of episode 3. Alas, she won't.

-Monroe had a great moment with Rosalee when he told her he was ready to rip off Adalind's mother's face for her. Rosalee responded, "That's so sweet!" Monroe also got half-wolf when the hospital staff tried to interfere with Nick during the magic eye drop scene.

-Jim Kouf & David Greenwalt wrote the episode. Terrence O'Hara directed it. Terrific episode all around.


1 comment:

Carter Morgan said...

This was a pretty good episode of Grimm, compared to the first season. I am really intrigued by the Captain’s story, especially with his family, now. We didn’t get much insight into it, but it’s a little is more than none. I first heard about Grimm from a coworker at Dish this summer and I decided to watch it and I wasn’t too terribly impressed, but this season has done quite a bit better, so far. Last night’s episode was a good step in the right direction, even if I couldn’t watch it live. I was, however, able to watch it on my Hopper’s PrimeTime Anytime feature with the Auto Hop to skip commercials, so it made it really easy to get through it. Hopefully we will see some great things from Grimm the rest of the season; it’s going to be an interesting year!

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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.