Friday, March 18, 2016

Grimm "Silence of the Slams" Review

The 101st episode of Grimm was a stand-alone case of the week about a Luchador discontented with his booking. Goyo, the frustrated Luchador, lacks a foundation and a history. Benito, the neighborhood maker of masks, thinks it’s a shame that Goyo doesn’t understand Spanish nor what he carved in wood, an emblem of the first Meso-American civilization. The epigraph of the episode concerned the idea that man reveals his true face once he wears a mask. Lucha libre wrestling has a deep history with masks. Each mask has a story. Goyo believed he needed a mask to take him to the top of the card. Benito emphasized the gravity of what Goyo asked. The dude had to sign a blood oath before Benito cut the face off a man to make the mask. “Silence of the Slams” was a mixture of Goosebumps, WWE style nonsense, with a touch of the hottest wrestling promotion going, Lucha Underground. Lucha Underground’s own Chavo Guerrero, Jr. appeared as the star.

Goyo’s a jobber for the nameless wrestling promotion. If a camera passed the name of the promotion, I missed it. The promoter, one of those dime-a-dozen uninspired wrestling promoter characters that appear in every wrestling episode of television, can’t elevate Goyo on the card. See, Goyo’s a jobber, aka an enhancement talent. Enhancement talents in losing enhance the talent a promotion wants to promote. So, Goyo goes for a magic mask, made in blood, and defeats the promotion’s star in his next match. Benito warned Goyo not to wear the mask outside of wrestling. Of course, Goyo doesn’t listen. The frustrated enhancement talent kills Vasquez aka Mirorama (forgive the spelling; it’s from memory of how I remember the sound) and it slowly dawns on him that he’s entered R.L. Stine’s “The Haunted Mask” of Goosebumps fame. The mask becomes his face, he becomes the monster of the mask’s original, and he kills Benito when Benito announces he’ll prepare the ceremony to free him from the magic mask. Is Goyo the murderer he was when he wore the mask? Did it reveal his true face, his true identity? It seems the character never knew himself as he never knew his history or his language.

Nick and Hank barely work the case. They guessed the murder was wesen related because of the neurotoxins found in the victim. The death of Vasquez led them to the promotion which led them to Benito’s where they found Goyo trying to kill him. Benito died, but not before telling them how to remove the mask, which brings Rosalee and Monroe to the shop. Rosalee performs the ritual. Goyo’s released. The voices continue talking to Goyo. Afterwards, Nick read an entry from one of the books Monroe’s uncle brought from Europe in a scene that underscores the theme of the episode that began with the epigraph. The case shows the sort of ease with which Nick and Hank work cases. Every single murder they get is wesen related. They deduced that the killer used the face, and these wesen always reveal themselves someway.

Getting back to a stand-alone case was welcomed after the run of mythology centric episodes. “Silence of the Slams” picked up immediately after the stick of wood healed Monroe. The gang agreed not to tell anyone what they found (and definitely not about its miracle parts). Nick lied to Adalind about not finding what was in the box. Adalind didn’t tell Nick about her powers returning. Rosalee didn’t mention what happened to her to Monroe or Nick, because that would’ve naturally included how her and Adalind stopped him.

The ambitions of the 99th and 100th episodes probably made “Silence of the Slams” a necessity. It’s not demanding on the main cast. The mask story carries a good part of the episode. It’s a ho-hum episode, light on the central narrative and its arcs, and heavy on the mask story.

Other Thoughts:

-The wrestling choreography lacked the explosiveness of lucha libre wrestling. I wonder how much footage the director shot. The crowd booed Goyo’s character. Wrestling crowds barely react to the enhancement. He faced the promotion’s top star every show, but the promoter told him he wasn’t main event material. No other wrestlers used the locker room except for the two wrestlers and the promoter. His motivation was win and not lose. He wanted to go over one time, but he identified himself as a jobber. I’m nitpicking. I’ve watched wrestling since the 90s.

-The episode ended with a Diana cliffhanger. Renard told Adalind he had an idea for getting her. However Adalind learns about Diana not being with the Royals all this time won’t end well for anyone. Rachel continued trying to villain Renard up. What a bland, bland, bland subplot. Connecting it to the Black Claw upgrades it to a beige.

-Chavo Guerrero’s an executive producer of El Rey’s Lucha Underground. He’s part of the legendary Guerrero family. He once lost a feud to Hornswoggle.

-Brenna Kouf wrote the episode. David Straiton directed.

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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.