Saturday, April 6, 2013

Grimm "One Angry Fuchsbau" Review

NBC's previews for "One Angry Fuchsbau" suggested mythology would be a major part of the episode, but the elements with the Verrat, and the brothers Renard, are limited to two scenes in the episode. The rest of the episode is about a lawyer who uses his special Wesen ability to sway the jury in a case in which he's defending a murderer. The lawyer story is better than last week's regrettable video game story because the lawyer story brings Rosalee, Monroe, Nick, and Hank, into the story. They share the same goal: let the truth win the day and stop the lawyer from using his abilities to free bad men.

Grimm's great to watch whenever the characters are brought together in a story with a common purpose. The lesser Grimm episodes tend to forget about what matters to Nick or Hank or Monroe in their case-of-the-week. For instance, last week's episode had nothing for Nick or Hank or Monroe or even Rosalee in the A plot. The characters involvement in the court case isn't very involved. Rosalee's on the jury, so her mind's being messed with by the lawyer. Nick and Hank just want to stop jury tampering. Monroe wants to protect Rosalee, and Rosalee wants to protect the case. The motivations are clear, as are the stakes, and nothing's complicated. The audience should want to see the lawyer fail since the teaser shows the suspect actually murdering his wife. We know he's guilty but, yet, he might walk free.

Nick, Hank, and Monroe, work together really well during the episode. There are fun sequences such as the one in which Nick and Hank distract Kellog, the lawyer, while Monroe switches the toads. Kellog 'drops a toad' to produce the effect he has on the jury whilst arguing his case for his client's innocence. Monroe loses one of the toads. The toad hops around the hotel room. Monroe pursues it silently. It's the type of sequence that's been done many times in television, but Grimm did it very well. Silas Weir-Mitchell is terrific in his silent comedic moments. Another fun sequence is when the gang works together to get Kellog's DNA. The sequence marks the triumphant return of Bud the Eisbiber. The plan and the execution is simple. They get what they need, and the guilty man is declared guilty by the jury.

The gang celebrates their victory that evening. It's a rare scene of a celebratory nature. Usually, Nick and Hank solve a case and the episode ends. Grimm needs more scenes of the gang having fun together. David Greenwalt's notable show about a vampire with a soul had plenty of scenes that focused on the friendship of Angel Investigations. Scenes of friendship are important in genre television. (Actually, those scenes are important in any TV shows.) I feel that Grimm showing more of the friendship will only boost the show. The audience feels more invested in the characters of their investment in each other. The long, long wait for Hank to find out what's going on did hurt the show. Similarly, Juliette's alienated from the plot because she's still recovering her memories. Thus, the fans have turned on her.

Juliette visits the trailer, goes inside, and experiences a flood of memories. Many Nicks appear to her saying many things about stuff she's forgotten. She's overwhelmed and overburdened by all the Nicks. The actual Nick prefers to give her time alone to process her reality as it comes to her in pieces. I've read posts about people's frustrations with the characters and how she's dragging the show down. Grimm takes its time with reveals. Juliette's arc is problematic because they've gone backwards. Yes, it's different because she doesn't remember what happened; however, the audience remembers. The writers wanted drama between Nick and Juliette, but there could've been other ways to find drama other than running away from something only to run back to it. Juliette's bothered by her flood of memories, but she's all alone. It's interesting watching a character cut off from the others. Nick had his Aunt Marie when he learned about his family's roots. Aunt Marie died, but Nick befriended Monroe. Nick's circle has grown. Juliette's an island unto herself. Monroe's afraid to tell her too much. Nick's keeping her at a distance.

Meanwhile, the Verrat storyline continues at its slow pace. Renard's brother in back in Vienna and comments on Adalind's glow. Whether or not he knows about the pregnancy is unclear. It's worth nothing Nick's mom e-mailed him about the coins. The storyline will arrive someplace. Just be patient.

"One Angry Fuchsbau" is a good episode, mostly because of its emphasis on the gang's closeness and their friendship. It made a major difference in an otherwise mediocre story about a rotten lawyer trying to cheat the system. Grimm writers know what they're doing. I just hope they continue to remember an essential rule of storytelling: character first, story second.

Other Thoughts:

-Nick still doesn't trust Renard. Nick and Hank didn't work an official case this week, which was for the best.

-Wu got mixed up on the stand by Kellogg. Reggie Lee didn't have the material he had last week. Like Weir-Mitchell, he takes what he has and excels. The dude stands out in every episode he's in.

-Kellogg ended up in prison for assaulting Rosalee. His cellmate was his client. The rest of their interaction was left to the imagination. Suffice to say, his client wasn't fond of lawyers anymore.

-Richard Hatem wrote the episode. Terrence O'Hara directed it.


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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.