Friday, October 12, 2012

Grimm "The Bottle Imp" Review

My focus was split between Grimm and the Argentina v. Uruguay game tonight. I didn't miss a beat of Grimm, but it felt like I did. Grimm's a worthwhile show to study for any aspiring writer. Greenwalt and Kouf have been in the business for decades. They must've written every kind of story in every possible genre. Grimm's structure is similar to a Mars Volta song, specifically "Take the Veil Cerpin Taxt" and "Cygnus...Vigmund Cygnus." The songs hit the crescendo around the 6-7 minute. Once it hits, the music shatters your brain and you wonder how it's possible for someone to write such amazing music. Grimm's not so amazing as an Omar Rodriguez-Lopez. "The Bottle Imp" has a really long build. The case is by-the-books, to the point I thought I missed something whilst trying to catch Messi's magic on the other channel. It's so ordinary, albeit with a villain who turns into a Drangzorn (I think I got that right), that one's waiting for the twist. The twist is coming, right? Right?

The twist of "The Bottle Imp" actually came 12 years ago on TheWB, on a Tuesday night in February. ANGEL's "I've Got You Under My Skin" uses the audience's expectations to turn an ordinary demon possession story into a cool little story because of the twist in the fourth act. Resolution happens by the end of the third act. Angel and Wesley exorcise the demon from the child's body. The father in the story is depicted as possibly violent due to a bad temper. Indeed, he is the red-herring throughout as the source of the issues; however, Angel and Wesley track the demon down in a sewer to kill it before it possesses another person. The demon discloses a secret: they saved him. The boy is empty. Possessing him was a black hole. Angel and Wesley rush back to the house just as the boy is burning down the house.

"The Bottle Imp" is 2012's "I've Got You Under My Skin." Greenwalt and Kouf decided to reinvent episodes they worked on twelve years ago in addition to reinventing class Grimm stories (with the occasional Aesop fairy tale mixed in). Josh Stewart's Drangzorn resembles Monroe's wolf, but he's hairier and angrier. The Drangzorn burrows in the ground after getting really, really mad about something. The character wears a permanent scowl/frown. Stewart portrayed the conflicted villain in ABC's horrible superhero family drama No Ordinary Family. Stewart didn't differentiate his NOF character from his Grimm character. The same scowl/frown seen in this episode was seen for most of the NOF season. Innocent people die. He seems responsible. The police hunt for him because he took off with his daughter. Nick and Hank found his wife beaten and bloody. They issue an Amber Alert.

Nick and Hank gather clues, research together in the cool trailer, and figure out the game-plan of the man who's leaving a trail of carnage in his wake. Sgt. Wu's literally the only entertaining part of the story. The Grimm writers seemed intent on lulling people to sleep or making them feel like it's okay for their audience to watch the 2nd half of Argentina/Uruguay. Hank figures out how deep Nick's Grimm-ness goes. He comes across the weapon which killed the ogre last season and realizes what was up during their cases last year. The police track down the man and his daughter using a GPS system. Nick rescues the girl. Word comes that the Drangzorn went to the hospital to finish his wife off; his character was supposed to be motivated by marital discord and a desire to see his child. Very little time's given to the villain. Stuff happens. He and his daughter moved on.

The daughter's actually the monster, and killer, of the episode. She's the little boy from #114 of ANGEL, except a girl, and her behavior's attributed to early puberty. The nine year old doesn't understand what's happening any more than Cory Matthews understands Theoretical Calculus, according to her parents. The twist isn't really the girl being unable to control herself, it's that she's not sorry; in fact, the stare she gives Nick indicates she knows what she's doing and doesn't care. Nick looks slightly chilled by the girl's innocent yet chilling smile through the glass of the police room. This girl, for Nick, signifies an area of the job which disturbs: young Wesen acting violently. How does Nick proceed with such cases? Their last scene together is the only intriguing scene of the episode.

Nick's confession to Hank about Stark showed Hank what Nick was capable of. Nick perhaps wonders what he's actually capable of. How far is too far? Nick stands transfixed by the sweet little girl who smiled at him with blood in her teeth. ANGEL never portrayed another purely evil little boy after "I've Got You Under My Skin." I don't expect Grimm to introduce another character like Ellie (was it Ellie"). Her presence and significance suggests the truly darker side of the job; but I think Grimm will content itself with the likes of Adalind, Renard, and grown-up Wesen who harm and kill. Network TV has a limit on darkness in a series. As close as Grimm comes to the darkness of the original fairy tales, it will never be as dark.

Other Thoughts:
-Monroe's off in his own world of screwing up magic medicines for Rosalee's clients while she's away. I was stunned Bree Turner appeared as she's very pregant at this point in the series. It's delightful to see her, though. I have nothing to write about Monroe's odd encounter with the client in his apartment. It was just bizarre.

-Nick dreamt Juliette remembered him. The last scene of "The Bottle Imp" ended on a kiss. They danced slowly after dinner and re-connected in a way they haven't since she woke from her coma with no memory of him. Of course, Juliette saw Renard when she broke away from the kiss.

-Adalind called Renard. He demanded to know what she did to Juliette's memory of Nick. She demanded to know who killed her mother. Neither received the answer they wanted.

-Sgt. Wu had two amazing lines tonight. I wish I wrote them down.

-Alan DiFiore wrote the episode. Darnell Martin directed it.


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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.