A Sashurai’s Review: The Originals – Season 4×10 (Where did the door with angel wings lead, I wonder?)

TO 4x10

 

SUMMARY

Kol and Rebekah return to New Orleans after witnessing several of Elijah’s sire-line die at a club while Freya attempts to find Elijah herself within the broken pendant. Together, Klaus and Rebekah locate and destroy all but one of the thorn-stakes leaving the last to Marcel who needs it to save Sofya. On his own, Kol tries to bargain with the harvest girls to see Davina but they refuse leaving him desperate, meanwhile Freya fails to find Elijah leaving Hayley to try herself. As she searches, Hayley finds the fabled red door which contains Elijah’s darkest aspect of his life during a time centuries ago. The Elijah within chases her but with Hope’s help, Elijah regains his sense of self and Freya stabilizes the pendant back to its full form. Later, Freya tells Rebekah that if they can’t use the Hollow to save Elijah’s body, she’ll sacrifice the only other person strong enough to see it through, Marcel. At the cemetery, Inadu finds Kol and shows him a resurrected Davina now linked to Inadu herself. Kol is now faced with serving Inadu to keep Davina safe.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

A family has mostly been reunited with a sense of familial dread on the horizon. Tonight’s Originals mark their trails that will inevitably lead to a final confrontation with the most powerful witch of all. The bulk of the episode stood for the search and rescue of Elijah’s soul, an act that built a visual landscape of doors and symbols but not really enough glimpses into his shattered past. Most dealt with reused footage of seasons past with the exception of a dark and brooding moment in time where Elijah slaughtered several innocents during a dark phase of his life. Metaphors aside, the episode was a retread into Klaus and Marcel’s symbiotic relationship and Rebekah’s echo of love for Marcel and Klaus’s voice of reason. Her return was the light of the episode while the rest was a bit of mop work in dealing with the remaining stakes with thorns. Kol’s forced allegiance to Inadu will know doubt keep the family on their toes, another decent takeaway from an otherwise sluggish plot.

 

THE GOOD

Both Elijah and Rebekah are the constant reminders that Klaus needs to settle down and focus more on the redemption side of things. With Elijah out of the picture, it’s up to his sister to maintain that delicate thread for the star of this show. While Elijah fights for Klaus’s redemption in a more elusive way, Rebekah is more up front with Klaus and his tired antics for stating the obvious in tumultuous times. Next to Marcel, and Klaus, Rebekah is the only other character dealing with old but necessary conflict when it comes to feelings. Kol’s relationship with Davina will be more fleshed out next week, but for now, we’re given a glimpse into Rebekah’s state of mind regarding Marcel and her love for Elijah.

 

The trip through Elijah’s mind did have a certain elegance that was bright and clean with the exception of a worn and withered red door that more than simplified the direction Hayley needed to go to find Elijah’s spirit. The symbols on each door could have been more exemplified but their meanings were meant for subtle remembrances that he does have moments he’s more proud of than not. It would have been more prevalent of Hayley had to force the red door open to gain entry, but maybe that would have been stacking the situation too much.

 

THE BAD

Elijah’s resolution felt a bit of a mess. I would have liked to have seen more examples of a broken mind and a hallway destabilizing with more weight to the situation. While we’re meant to believe that Hayley was the one person that could and did reach through to him, we missed a great opportunity to include the entire Mikaelson family in helping bring him back. There was a moment in his memories where the siblings had a dinner where everyone, excluding Finn was present and pleasant. That should have been a trigger that maybe seeing them all again would have been a stronger theme to bring Elijah from the brink of feral madness. Instead, it was Hayley alone that more or less handled the situation with a vague threat that somehow Elijah could harm her in this enclosed universe.

 

Inadu only made brief appearances, deciding against making a strong statement against the Mikaelson family. She’s biding her time and creating contingency plans to ensure her survival which suggests that while she’s smart enough to plan, she also desperate to stay alive which means she has vulnerabilities to exploit. She didn’t seem at first the type of person who wouldn’t outright proclaim the city as her own and control the entire populace with her power. Unless she’s holding back I feel she’s being a bit too under utilized giving the Mikaelson family a bit too much breathing room to settle their safety of Elijah and fellow kin.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

Short but to the point, I liked Klaus and Rebekah’s interactions with Marcel during both of their major scenes. While there isn’t much of a reason to care about Sofya what’s important is Marcel does and Rebekah recognizes it. She’ll never truly be over him and that will probably come into play sooner than we think. For now, we’re treated with three alumni cast members putting their differences aside for a common goal, mostly. Klaus accommodated Marcel’s request at Rebekah’s mostly stern expressions and the rest we summed up through Marcel’s speed with chasing the stakes down. I like their dynamic and hope they continue to have more scenes like them in the future.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Klaus had a bit growth when he allowed Marcel to take the stake but Hayley had the most impact in helping to restore Elijah’s soul which was the stronger focus tonight. There isn’t much she won’t do for Elijah and given the circumstances I’m sure the situations would be reversed easily. I think she gave into fear too much when Elijah chased her given she’s a powerful hybrid but the point was she didn’t know how to deal with a feral Elijah but in the end managed to safely bring him back to his suit-wearing personality. And I’m certain she’d to it all over again in a heartbeat for him.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

Kol can be a bit of a wild-card here as he’s in a position to do anything to save Davina. Does that mean he will at least tell his siblings what’s happened or will he outright betray them for the sake of his love? That’s a tough one to decipher given his track record for making brash decisions in the past. I’m banking that he won’t tell them at first until he knows for sure he can trust that they’ll help spare her because right now we have too many damsels in distress and not enough Mikaelsons to care about it.

 

Over the seasons it’s become clear that the only way to pit all these “good” characters against each other is to have them force to serve the villain(s) of the season. That doesn’t always make for epic showdowns when the real threats are always power and control and never really personal. Marcel and Klaus have had the best reasons to hate each other and that’s why their clash in season one worked so well, but over the years it’s become a bit thin with how they make betrayals and hard choices hinge on how desperate the good guys are to save other good guys in peril. This is also why Vincent is such a compelling character because he still makes his decisions based on those strong feelings and not because he’s being coerced all the time like Marcel, Kol, and other characters of the past. Isn’t it more potent when characters turn on eachother of their own accord?

 

The remainder of this season will deal with whether or not Elijah can be returned to his original body as the Mikaelsons battle the hollow and her machinations. Right now we don’t know Inadu’s endgame except that probably still filled with revenge over what happened to her so long ago. What’s really stopping her from going to the Mikaelsons straight up, screaming like a Black Canary and melting all their faces off?

 

It may seem trite, but I’d refrain from doing any more scenes with Elijah until we know for sure if he’s going to be brought back or die. There needs to be some emotional distance and more desperation on the part of his siblings and if we continue to go back and see how comfortable and normal Elijah is in the pendant, we won’t really see that play out. Klaus had a heartfelt moment speaking to Elijah’s corpse, something that was one-way and there’s a bit or honesty there that can only come when people like Klaus are separated from the people they care about most. It will give more time and focus to the characters in reality that can help him and truthfully, I think Elijah has played his part as well as he’s ever going to.

 

OVERALL SCORE

6 out of 10. The main villain bides her time and sets up a chessboard of her own to make sure she doesn’t end up a lens-flare in the bleak of existential luminance. Are two plots dealt with Hayley’s search for Elijah’s fractal spirit and the Mikaelsons searching for the remaining thorns that can kill them. Marcel pines for a character we still haven’t really invested any time in and Kol is once more obsessed with keeping Davina safe. There’s a bit of textbook arcs happening here, some of which are rethreading on familiar ground as Kol is once more the odd sibling out. Rebekah will for the moment replace Elijah as Klaus’s voice of reason and Freya continues to exert her intentions by saying she’ll kill and sacrifice whomever she has to to save her family. The last thorn-wrapped stake may still play a part in the future unless there’s nothing to be gained by threatening another Mikaelson’s life with it. All in all, it was mostly a light trip down Elijah’s memory lane and little else to showcase the real problem which was Inadu herself. Marcel tried but failed to stop her making him realize the alliance he needs, but as always, darker motives will drive these characters to be more combative than allied. We’ll see how far Inady pushes them. Thanks for reading.

 

 

No more words

A Sashurai’s Review: The Originals – Season 4×09 (Trees can be hollow…get it?)

TO 4x09

 

SUMMARY

Inadu speaks with a dying Elijah about her inevitable return and goes to Vincent in an attempt to gain his loyalty. Meanwhile, Klaus, Freya. Hayley, Marcel, and Vincent are at odds over how to plan the hollow’s demise which may require Elijah’s death. Frustrated over no options, Freya remembers the pendant that once held Finn’s soul and speaks of using it for Elijah. Klaus instead offers to be the sacrifice while Marcel plans to subdue Sofya with Hayley’s blood. When Vincent prepares to kills Klaus, coven acolytes stop them and destroy the thorns before being eliminated. Marcel is successful in stopping Sofya but not before handing over the final bone as bait. Hayley and Freya find Elijah but the hollow’s spirit arrives to complete her spell. Klaus finds them and beckons Freya to trap Elijah’s soul in the pendant just as he’s about to die. After a power surge Freya reveals the pendant has been shattered. Later that night, Vincent goes to Marcel asking for the book as a last resort to fight the hollow. Klaus is distraught over the loss of Elijah but with Hope’s help, Freya finds that Elijah is somehow caught in the shattered pendant, but alive. Elsewhere, Inadu frees herself from a tree containing her bones and emerges in her original physical form.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

The race to save Elijah ended with a somber realization that maybe the originals shouldn’t last forever after the extended centuries they’ve been around. Be that as it may, Elijah is not lost to the void as a semblance of his spirit fractured within the broken pendant. Tonight’s Originals episode brought all our allies together in a single way to ruin the return of the hollow, however they failed in every aspect leaving Inadu clearly closer in her next step toward massive revenge. Once again, Hope becomes the saving grace and helps the group understand Elijah’s plight. The fondness for the team grows in peculiar ways as Vincent embarks on probably his most dangerous quest. With Inadu returned, how long can the group last against such a monumental force? Even if Elijah came back, there’s nothing currently available to help them rid the world of the hollow unless Hayley’s bloodline continues to be central to Inadu’s demise.

 

THE GOOD

The highlight for tonight’s episode really comes from Vincent and Klaus standing by their primary beliefs in what it means to sacrifice for the greater good even if they end on opposite sides of that coin. The atmosphere they provide gives their respective sides the kind of hope they need to survive without compromising completely their ideals and sentiments. With Vincent, he makes very solid points about the nature of existing for so long that one can’t continue clinging to life for the sake of it. Klaus showed he wasn’t above his own existence if it meant other in his stead would pay the price and its one of the more character driven decisions he’s made since his sacrifice during last season’s finale. Together, they drove much of this episode’s heart and soul.

 

THE BAD

When entire episodes hinge on a plan to be formed and carried out with precise work and dedication, a lot of those familiar beats tend to surface in consistent fashion. Of course Elijah wasn’t going to survive, and of course Inadu was going to arise at the end, and of course Hope was going to be instrumental in declaring Elijah’s survival. It deflates the overall struggle to ensure Elijah wasn’t going to die in the middle of season 4. I got more sentiment out of Vincent’s talk with Klaus over his decision than I did with anything that came after Elijah’s “death,” and that was really only because we understand how these plots work. Even if Klaus screamed hours into the night, it wouldn’t be enough to convince us that Elijah was truly gone. When characters manage the real subtle goodbyes, then you can start playing with our thoughts on the validity of real deaths on a show like this.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

I mentioned it earlier, but Vincent mentioning a brief history of his upbringing in New Orleans mixed with how he thinks Cami would be proud of Klaus for what he was doing was a really nice touch to give the conversation. Klaus is nothing if not the kind of person who will finish your sentence if he thinks he’s being ridiculed or reminded of his dark deeds, but this time he was surprised by Vincent’s positive feedback. He doesn’t get it much and when he does, he’s often left speechless which in Klaus’s way means probably a “thanks” or a “Huh, didn’t realize that” kind of response.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Klaus made a very selfless call in deciding to die for the sake of saving Elijah. It was assuredly more calculated given his strength and knack for surviving the odds, but he was unsure of Elijah could handle the transfer. Still, he didn’t even flinch as the prospect and certainly didn’t have second thoughts later that night. I’m only half surprised he didn’t rip out his own heart and try to throw it into space to make up for the fact loss of the thorns that would have done the job as well. He had his moments with Marcel that kept him more family orientated and less caring for others like Sofya, but he’s still a work in progress. If somehow he becomes a beacon of stronger hope by saving the people of new Orleans in a strong selfless act, maybe that will finally turn things around for everyone as whole.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

Naturally a lot of people are going to wonder if Elijah’s sired bloodline, Tristan included were mortally affected by Elijah’s passing. The short answer should be yes, all of Elijah’s spawn are dead, however the longer answer is, it doesn’t matter. Last season was about the sired lines and created chaos and intrigue with what an original dying would do to so many vampire characters, but at this point, we’re no longer dealing with other vampires that are necessary to the plot. If a third of the all the vampires in the world suddenly dropped dead, it won’t matter in the pocket of new Orleans. The real twist should be if Sofya was part of Elijah’s line. Clearly she wasn’t “dead” by the end of this episode so if she was part of Elijah’s blood, then we’d know for sure if his death affected others like her, however that’s probably not the case.

 

So if I understand it correctly, the thorns take a while to kill its victim and staking Klaus with normal wood would have accelerated that death? I’m not sure I follow that logic because normal stakes do nothing of the sort. If it was the old daggers used back in the day that would make more sense, but Klaus is so above those kinds of weapons I’m surprised they even came up with it.

 

Since we have a few more episodes I imagine Inadu isn’t just going to show up and earthquake the entire state into a chaotic mess. She’ll either need time to recover her old strength or she’ll come up with some wicked machination to exact a more fitting revenge for her imprisonment on all our characters. She may need help from loyal acolytes, and a base of operations. What I think it important to remember here is that no one actually knows what she looks like, so she could in theory infiltrate the group in various ways without being spotted as the hollow’s original form.

 

Small moments, but I really liked the soft piano melody played during Vincent and Klaus’s scene at the cemetery. It wasn’t muddled by some pop-culture song with background lyrics meant to narrate the somber feelings, but rather help accentuate the scene with some uplifting yet melancholy personality. Kudos for the restraint and score.

 

OVERALL SCORE

7 out of 10. The Originals told the tale of Inadu’s climactic return to the physical realm, all converging with Elijah’s death and subsequent survival in the shattered realm of the broken pendant. The Mikaelson fury will be subdued for another day as everyone will be focused on getting their brother back. Klaus and Vincent were the ones who really gave this episode a voice to be heard as the predictable nature of plans going wrong came into play. The conundrum brought to focus by Vincent was expressively the only passionate theme here in understanding how long should an immortal continue to exist once they’ve experienced everything? Given a few palpable moments, the episode was carefully above average but not quite groundbreaking in the hopes that an apparent Elijah death would be mind-warping. If in fact that’s still in the cards, next week will tell us that for sure. Thanks for reading.

 

 

No more words

A Sashurai’s Review: Supernatural – Season 12×23 (That portal explains the strange Scooby-Doo crossover we’re getting next season)

SN 12x23

 

SUMMARY

Crowley seeks out the Winchesters after returning to his body while Sam and Dean frantically look for biblical signs surrounding the location of the nephilim. Castiel continues to help Kelly adjust to her pregnancy in a remote location as some of the nephilim’s power seeps out and opens a portal to a parallel world. Castiel encounters it and sees a world undone by the angel and demon war including Bobby, a human survivor. Sam, Dean, and Mary track down Castiel as he shows the brothers what’s on the other side of the portal. When Crowley shows up he devises a plan that will stop Lucifer. As Lucifer arrives, Sam and Dean lure him into the portal while Crowley works on a spell to trap him which requires a living sacrifice. As Lucifer pummels Dean, Crowley confronts the devil and kills himself as the last ingredient to the spell. Sam and Dean escape just as Castiel enters the fight to keep Lucifer busy. Sam and Dean return and watch Castiel exit the portal only to be stabbed by Lucifer with an angel blade, seemingly ending his life. Distraught over the loss, Sam and Dean watch Mary confront Lucifer with her spell-infused brass knuckles and the two enter the portal together just as it collapses. During the climax, Kelly gives birth and dies in the process. Sam finds her passed away and follow burning footprints to a figure in the dark with glowing eyes, the nephilim.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

If any of these deaths are canon and unchanging, this show is going to be a riot to read about over the coming months. Supernatural raised its stakes and sacrificed more than its merry worth of fan-favorite characters including Castiel and Crowley. Rowena also received an off-screen death and Mary is trapped in another dimension with Lucifer. And to top it off, the nephilim is nearly full-grown, evil-looking and has the power to create portals to parallel worlds. Yup, we have our 13th season all squared away and it’s game will be the paradox of alternate realities. This means a multitude of things including these so-called deaths they were so cavalier about. Nothing is certain as anyone can show up in the future including Bobby who cameo’d tonight. It was a strong set-up with seemingly devastating losses, but the inclusion of alternate realities somewhat deflates the intensity of loss here and while its exciting to see this direction come to fruition I wonder how well we can trust anyone’s demise from season’s past if the show decides to swap doppelgangers all over us. It was an interesting finale to be sure, complete with creepy weird nephilim named “Jack.” Yeah, that’s right, scourge of the universe is named Jack.

 

THE GOOD

The portal came completely out of left field, but when you stop and think about it, it really does literally open the door for a lot of crazy explanations. The first, but not the most important is whether God and the Darkness have dominion over a Supernatural multi-verse or if they’re tied to just the one Sam and Dean are in. I would like to know the answer to that question sooner than later, but the most fun aspects come from a season 13th concept where Sam and Dean become the equivalent to “Sliders” only…maybe not as badly drawn out. It’s not necessarily jumping the shark, but it does raise other concerns as well. For now, I like the idea and I’ll run with it, assuming it even becomes that at all. If it doesn’t, then what we’re dealing with is a very strange and erratic nephilim that can probably traverse dimensions, time-jump, alter existing reality and probably bring back anyone who has been killed recently. That’s another big possibility as well. Oh the theories will fly on this one.

 

THE BAD

The concept of dumping one loss after another was too taxing to anyone who had a lot of emotional investment with these characters. And the nonchalant way it was done too lends more to the theory that these deaths are not permanent. Rowena was really fitting into the show and they gave her an off-screen death. That honestly made no sense at all. I’m not against killing off likable characters but there was something too generous about these moments that make me feel like no one is getting off the show that easily. That Castiel death was almost tough to sit through because it was strange punch to the gut yet again, it’s too off the wall that they would kill Crowley and Castiel in the same episode. It’s guts, I’ll give them that but I don’t buy it. I guess I’m in the denial category for the time being.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

Definitely not the creepy Jack reveal at the end. No, I rather liked when Bobby showed up and surprised Sam and Dean. It was a short but nice little unofficial reunion for the three and anything that has Bobby in it gets a thumbs up from me. He didn’t call them idgits, but that was more Earth 1 Bobby anyway. And melted angel-blade bullets was genius, something I hope Sam and Dean utilize in the future.

 

CHARACTER MVP

I have to give it to Crowley, he went out with more nobility and gusto than anyone else on the episode and to do what he did really shapes his persona even making it feel a bit complete with where he started out as a lonesome cross-roads demon. His defiance against Lucifer was what really drove him as of late and if he was going to be taken out it was going to be by his own hands while simultaneously keeping the devil locked in an entirely new prison. Rest in Peace, Crowley, I do believe you’ve earned it.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

In all fairness to Lucifer’s plot at hand, is being on a war-ravaged earth where angels and demons fight endlessly any different than what he had in mind? Maybe an omnipotent nephilim would be a perfect weapon to reshape the world in his image, bit can’t he just make another one? Is that particular earth so important, and even more so, is there a Lucifer on that earth that might have a problem with another Lucifer in his realm?

 

I’ve no doubt Sam and Dean are going to wrestle with some logistical concepts like convincing this new creature to undo everything that happened including opening the portal to retrieve their mother who may be suffering Lucifer’s wrath as we speak. But is the nephilim benevolent as a stands? Were the visions Castiel was receiving of a different earth entirely where all evil had been vanquished?

 

I feel like they completely left out the plan to strip the nephilim of its grace. It was even mentioned in the episode earlier on and then never brought up again. I suppose the portal distracted the Winchesters from bringing it up, but this was all about saving Kelly’s life which in the end didn’t seem to be anyone’s objective. So they just made it so Kelly was okay with the decision which, given the circumstances is a fate way to go, but still, seems off.

 

Something else that should be brought up is whether the gates to hell are in fact closed. If they are that prevents demons from coming back, but then there’s the absent last prince of hell, aka, Azmodeus who never made an appearance this season. No doubt, he’ll have some role next season as I doubt they’d just name drop a powerful character without utilizing them at a future time. I hope they write him better than Dagon who really fell flat as a character.

 

OVERALL SCORE

8 out of 10. What started out as a simple formula with a small twist of parallel dimensional hopping as a concept, Supernatural throws the gloves down and goes for broke by killing off 3 major characters and trapping two more far from the grips of Sam and Dean who now must content with a new entity who may or may not be influenced in the ways of good and evil. The potential for portals leading to other worlds is a logical direction a show that has lasted 12 seasons can go, but if I were them I’d remain static on the decisions they made and keep their deaths real. It’ll hit harder and make their plight next season all the more desperate because there are essentially alone. We may not have to face angels and demons as we know them anymore, but maybe worse things with whatever the nephilim decides to do. His appearance suggests some dark days are coming, but at the same time, we don’t really know for sure. Very powerful and gut kicking in the end, but I admire the lengths they went to show us that no-one is truly safe on Supernatural, not even Castiel. Until next season, carry on my wayward sons.

 

 

No more words

A Sashurai’s Review: Supernatural – Season 12×22 (Two finales for the price of one)

SN 12x22

 

SUMMARY

With Bevelle’s help, Sam and Dean try various times to escape the bunker but are unsuccessful, meanwhile, a brainwashed Mary is sent to kill more hunters including Jodi Mills. After three days, Dean uses the grenade launcher to blow a hole in a concrete wall and escapes but is wounded in the leg. Bevelle bargains for her life in exchange for returning Mary to normal as they travel to Jodi’s, who with the help of Alex subdue Mary. After Bevelle admits she can’t help Mary, Sam gathers a team of hunters and sets his sights on the HQ of the men of letters. Dean stays behind wanting to somehow heal Mary as Ketch leaves HQ in search for her. Sam, Jodi and other hunters storm the compound as Bevelle helps Dean psychically link into Mary’s subconscious where he witnesses his youthful self interact with his mom. Dean admits his hatred toward Mary over what she cost them by leaving but also forgives her which brings her back to normal just as Ketch kills Bevelle and is about to kill Dean. Mary awakens and kills Ketch as Sam and Jodi capture Dr. Hess. Hess tries to convince Sam to join forces against Lucifer who they know is after the nephilim but Sam refuses as Jodi kills Hess. Back at the bunker Mary is afraid Sam won’t forgive her but Sam arrives and persuades her otherwise with a hug.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

Given the nature of the apocalypse that’s been brewing, this pre-finale plot was the right course of action combining a multitude of elements including a rousting speech from Sam and a sense of ownership from both Mary and Dean as they deal with their issues after a season of avoidance. Ketch, Hess, and Bevelle are put to rest and with the circumstances of the British chapter seemingly closed, we can finally move on to the supernatural heart of the matter. Earlier in the season I wanted there to be a hunter crowd versus a men of letters crowd and we essentially got it sans Garth who should have totally cameo’d with the werewolf abilities and all. It was a satisfactory experience with casualties on both sides but it was radically one-sided and without anyone really substantial associated with either side the whole climax was a bit generic but with that said I still enjoyed the raucous it caused. Dean and Mary’s convenient psychic joining plot did reveal some emotional ties that needed mending which I think was the real focal point of this episode with Sam’s accountability over trusting in the men of letters a strong second. Great episode and should blend nicely with the finale.

 

THE GOOD

Mary’s return was textbook written and needed to be done rather quickly, but it was a very simple and effective play, one I think Dean needed desperately to experience. He really doesn’t have issues blaming people for what he feels is appropriate but his power to forgive was equally uplifting because he rarely does it outside of an egotistical sense of responsibility. They made it very personal between the two and it was probably one of the most empathic moments the series pulled off with Dean who needed someone else to feel the anguish in his heart over the burden left by his parents. Great moments.

 

Wrapping up the men of the letters invasion was also appreciative and necessary. The concept absolutely worked in favor of this season and with Ketch, Mick, Bevelle, and Hess some interesting characters for certain, they’re all dead now. This means we won’t be getting any more invasions unless they feel something in the future needs their involvement. One of these days we’ll get the Winchesters to another country but for now, they defended their own turf with fiery gusto and gave Sam some decent leadership qualities that he tends to lack in when brother Dean is calling the shots. Perhaps this will open the door for him to make stronger decisions like that in the future.

 

THE BAD

The tone between Sam’s plot and Dean’s was very different and flipping between the two several times was a little disjointing. When I was ready for the resolve in Dean and Mary’s side of things, it kept going back to random gun fights with Sam and Jodi and since I knew neither of them were going to die it felt a little distracting. Nevertheless it wasn’t a great flaw by any means, the episode still gave itself a serious and noteworthy finish to the on-going plot of the British chapter, one I am thankful is now ended though.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

Cliché to the end, but I did like Mary being the one to put Ketch down. That was set up for a long time now but it was still appropriate to witness because the two had a very odd relationship. I half expected him to confess some psycho-pathic love for Mary before she shot him, but he was never redeemable and wouldn’t have won any points for sounding like a love-struck warrior who thought he was doing the right thing. If anything I’m surprised she didn’t unload the entire clip into him.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Dean had a lot to get off his chest and the tears were thick with hatred and love for his mother, both of which he stressed out loud. He encouraged Sam to lead the hunters against the British Chapter and even went as far as to give Bevelle that headstart had she lived. There was a lot of growing up that Dean went through surprisingly and venting the way he did was oddly therapeutic and probably for the rest of us too considering we’ve been on the road with him for 12 years now.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

The grenade launcher did come into play but not nearly in the capacity I wanted it to. I suppose I gave that weapon too much importance which begs the question, they went two days without even thinking about it and when did he decide to grab it from the trunk of the car? It had always been in there up until now. Odd convenient item is convenient.

 

I still have to scoff at the psychic link scenario that Bevelle whipped up. I thought it would have made more sense to magically link Dean and Mary together considering the spells they have at their disposal. It would have made more sense.

 

I understand Sam not wanting to team up with Hess to find Lucifer and the nephilim, but out of curiosity’s sake, I think he should have at least humored her and asked what her plan was to stop it, because they must have had something on the radar once they “took out” the hunters and who knows maybe they still will, stumble upon it that is.

 

It was good to see Alex and Jodi again. With Claire, the trio are set to hopefully have another adventure next season, one that sees them all interact again, as a family with sisters that don’t get along, much like Sam and Dean were in nearly every season. I still say it’s a worthy spin-off.

 

OVERALL SCORE

8 out of 10. Dean’s venting, Sam’s leadership, and the extermination of the men of letters was all we needed to see from the pre-finale episode which also saw Mary return from a rather evil alter-ego. No loose ends and one big bad to go. The family is past their differences now and should hopefully move forward with one last big fight in them. Dean and Mary’s psychic link was the real highlight of the episode giving some lasting feelings and working out the drama that set this show in motion so long ago. We have one more to go, so let’s not waste any time and get right to it. Thanks for reading.

 

 

No more words

A Sashurai’s Review: The Originals – Season 4×08 (Wait, the cursed bone knife is part of the pelvis bone? Not a rib? Wait, what?)

TO 4x08

 

SUMMARY

Klaus contacts Alaric from Mystic Falls about a bone fragment which he locates and agrees to offer up. Meanwhile, Hayley and Klaus are sent by Hope to meet with the ancestors at the church where the harvest girls send them to commune with Davina who relays the history of the hollow’s origin. Centuries ago, a coven marriage brought a child that was given power to unite the tribes but in doing so corrupted her spirit leading them to destroy her, but as her dying act, Inadu, the hollow created the werewolf curse. It also reinforced Hayley’s bloodline to be the only one that can potentially stop the hollow. Marcel and Elijah recover the bone fragment from Alaric after a brief run in with Sofya as the hollow and together they find another bone hidden in a mausoleum. When Sofya finds them, Hayley arrives to stop her but find out that Davina plans to sacrifice Klaus as the final means to trap the hollow for good. Marcel, Hayley and Elijah go to the church to try and persuade Davina against killing Klaus but it is Hope who confronts and stops Davina. Afterward, Elijah returns to Marcel’s home to give him the dagger that can kill him but is subdued by Sofya who stabs him in the back with the thorns that can kill an original.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

Well, there we have it, the official history of the werewolves and the backwards logic that sustains Hayley as the one driving force that can defeat the hollow. I’m certain when she first showed up on TVD that they weren’t planning on this scenario but I do give them points for ingenuity. Witch magic is a finicky thing that is responsible for both the vampire and werewolf creations. I don’t necessarily mind the concept, but how the two relate is very strange and will probably be ripped apart by the enthusiasts who want their shows to make sense. In any case, the marvel really came from Hope’s real entry into the fight and now we are starting to understand how powerful she really is. This is one of those episodes that almost promised to end the life of a mainstay character but couldn’t quite get the job done, giving us a real sense of false tension among who that might be. Of course when dealing with objects and curses that can destroy near omnipotent creatures we have the slow agonizing death effect which Elijah is no doubt going to go through. A sunrise or two later and he’ll be drained of all life unless some loophole of antidote is found. Sound familiar? He all but categorically handfed us his last rites before succumbing to the villains next evil plan. Aspects of this episode were somewhat confusing to follow, but for the most part, it was an enjoyable continuation of the history of the supernatural of this world.

 

THE GOOD

I’m an avid fan of the old crossover effect so when I can see characters cameo from other shows I grin like an idiot. Alaric showed up three times to begrudgingly aid the Mikaelson family and even offers a safe haven for Hope to grow up and learn her abilities in an environment akin to the Xavier school for the gifted. I’m surprised he and Klaus didn’t refine the details of the old days when Alaric was actually a vampire or that he was really close to having a relationship with Caroline. Spin-offs are nothing if not sour over what has to be addressed in their parental counterpart shows and as such, we got a simple regards from Klaus regarding not anyone imparticular but rather Mystic Falls as a whole. It was a nice moment even if he and Alaric really aren’t connected in much except for both being fathers.

 

Bringing Davina back was also a nice touch even if her existence is a bit marred by the fact her soul was supposed to be annihilated, but hey, who cares, right? She’s the lead voice for the ancestors and hopefully it’s not her last appearance as her relationship with Marcel is the only one that matters considering what the two have been through. A lot can be said about how she listened to Marcel’s sorrow toward the end of the episode at her grave. It was probably one of the more tender moments that we needed to see from the old king of New Orleans and help remind us that he’s essentially a good person who racks up the guilt over her loss and others in the past.

 

THE BAD
It should be noted, the content of Elijah’s growth in this episode was well thought out, but the delivery of his scenes all but choreographed his sudden fall at the hollow’s hands. I don’t need to see a character’s rise to accepting their flaws and making changes in their lives for the better if the goal is to make them more sympathetic and then make them die or seem to die shortly after. This goes for his noble sacrifice in offering to take Klaus’s place. It’s too easy for a character to throw the towel in, but it’s another to do it where his or her allies don’t have a choice but to watch. The choice was taken out of his hands because they weren’t ready to end his existence yet but they wanted us to really feel comfortable with his decision about it which makes it harder in the long run if all they’re doing is postponing the inevitable. The same problem came with Katherine on TVD when they really drew out her death scene but that’s water under the bridge. In summary, don’t force-feed us a character’s willingness to make amends and die unless you actually plan to go through with it.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

When Hope stopped Davina from killing Klaus. That was really the moment when we finally saw Hope’s abilities stand out aside from having loose connections to magic scattered throughout the season. Klaus and Hayley are beginning to see what she’s really capable of and how much she understands what’s happening. If the show is smart, they’ll make her be the final element that puts to end the Hollow and not Hayley, who is still floundering in this season in my opinion. Klaus’s relationship with Hope is fairing far better than his with Marcel as a father figure and it’s one of the best connections he’s excelled in given his tendency to hit brick walls with most characters on the show.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Elijah may deserve it, but I rather think Hope is the honored recipient this time. She stood up to one of the most powerful witches ever and is taking an actual role in helping her parents defend against a greater evil. Alaric recognizes her potential and wants to guide her in the future which is a nod to a spin-off that will probably never happen. Her parents are starting to realize that she doesn’t need shielding from the danger but rather an inclusion to the plan in destroying that danger however that plan manifests in the season. I do want to give Elijah credit in his comment about not forgiving himself for ripping Marcel’s heart out last season, something that Marcel probably didn’t expect to hear and honestly, neither was I.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

So Inadu, Esther, Cade, and Silas are the four characters that really solidified all the origins of supernatural nonsense on this show. Somewhere down the road I need to readdress the chronological events of every major superpower in this world and figure out how it all connected. It’s been a little hard to track and remember over the years.

 

I also have to dock Elijah points for not actually giving the blade to Marcel until Hayley told him to. He offered it as a show of trust but kept it even after they worked together to find one of the bones. That’s cold and I refuse to believe he just forgot. He should have given the blade to him outright the second he showed it as a means to gain Marcel’s help or else his gesture would still look more like a threat for having it in the first place.

 

I know Marcel has feelings for Sofya but realistically there’s zero chemistry for them to follow up on. I see no real reason for him or anyone to try and “save” her from the hollow and considering she’s indestructible while the hollow controls her, I’m not really worried about her survival unless the hollow leaving her body somehow transmutates or destroys her body and soul in the process. It really doesn’t matter either way. She had one moment of sympathy when she described her past to Klaus, but they really didn’t follow up on that since so there’s not enough interest to see Marcel save the day for her or her somehow coming out of this alive.

 

So, if Marcel’s blood alone will kill Klaus, then what’s the point with making these thorn-like weapons to begin with? Creating original-style death weapons is never supposed to be an easy task and I thought there needed to be special circumstances surrounding Marcel’s blood to aid in killing the originals and not the blood alone. I suppose it’s a moot point this late in the season, but they really wanted to sell the possibility that Klaus was going to die and as usual we weren’t fooled even for a second that was going to happen.

 

OVERALL SCORE

8 out of 10. Alaric and Davina made special appearances to help escalate the danger of the hollow and we also got the official interpretation of the werewolves which I wasn’t entirely satisfied is seeing but it’s better than nothing and I always thought the werewolves got the worst storylines out of the deal on both shows. Here, they finally have a connection to the big bad and in the end I’m okay with their origin plot even if others aren’t. Hope made a grand save for her father and Elijah is now in peril as a victim of Inadu’s return. The race is on to save an original with the threat of the city in the balance. Oh, and today we received confirmation that The Originals will be renewed for season 5, which means our tales with Klaus and crew will continue hopefully in a grand new direction once this mess with the hollow is resolved. Although, if they only get 13 episodes that will top off the series at 92 episodes. Make it an even 21 episodes and end the show on the 100th episode and we’ll call it square. Thanks for reading.

 

 

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A Sashurai’s Review: Supernatural – Season 12×21 (Ketch went full on Dr. Evil. Why didn’t he just fill the bunker with liquid hot magma)

SN 12x21

 

SUMMARY

When Sam and Dean learn of the death of their fellow hunter, Eileen, they begin to suspect the Men of Letters are responsible for the deaths of several other hunters. Meanwhile, Lucifer becomes aware that the power controlling him by Crowley has been slowly reversing itself allowing him to break free and finally kill Crowley, but not before Crowley’s soul escapes into a rat. At the Men of Letters compound, Mary is being slowly brainwashed into siding with them and has been taking part in the murder of a hunter and friend. Ketch and Bevell are pitted against each other by Dr. Hess for Mick’s position as Sam and Dean discover the bug in their bunker. They lay a trap and spring it on Bevell, but as they return home, Ketch and Mary are waiting and trap the Winchesters including Bevell who Ketch betrayed. As the air begins to dissipate in the locked bunker, Lucifer watches a sunset, finally free to find his unborn son.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

The technical penultimate episode of Supernatural deals in real personal dilemmas with a dash of hyper-intensive, band-aid ripping, deal-with-it scenarios including the death of Eileen who most certainly didn’t deserve a ten second top of the episode death sequence. Moderately following were some calm yet never casual bad guy vs bad girl moments that are making me indulge in which one I would actually pick to win. If it were truly up to me, I’d have them both suffer Lucifer’s wrath equally. Mary’s downward spiral into the Men of Letter’s kool-aid mentality was by far the more potent of the plot giving Sam and Dean so very little time to react as they are stuffed and locked within the confines of their home with Bevell as the betrayed guest. All this and Crowley’s possible plan to follow Lucifer to his own child. If it’s an act, he surely played his part well. If not, he’s a very lucky little demon. All the right notes were hit giving us one more week to digest and wonder how Castiel and the brothers will handle another potential apocalypse once more pieced together by the devil himself.

 

THE GOOD

The pressure is on for Mary who may or may not have any more fight left in her to battle against the personality Ketch and Bevell injected into her. I was particularly drawn in by Bevell’s chat about Azazel from her past and even more so by the tone in Mary’s voice as she begged Ketch to kill her. She almost withdrew into a younger version of herself, higher pitched and in complete fear of what she was becoming. Very well acted, and once more I thought Ketch would be sentimental but he was for all the wrong reasons. The pay off will be when Mary recovers and puts a bullet in Ketch’s head for all-time sake. If that resolution doesn’t happen then Ketch will be meant for seasonal villainy. I doubt that will be the case though.

 

The stakes are oddly higher and more personalized this season which I think really helps give credibility to their 12th go as a whole. For once, Sam and Dean aren’t at odds with each other but rather powerless as a duo to really combat what’s been under their eyes the entire time. Even as dis-trustworthy as they’ve become, they still couldn’t ascertain how embedded the Men of Letters were making themselves. Mary certainly didn’t help, but that’s the point of conflict is you make these good-natured characters deal with it in highly-combustible ways, more often solitary as well. If it wasn’t for Mary’s plight, Lucifer’s subplot with the nephilim would only make this season somewhat good, but with these combined elements actually has helped turn it into one of the better ones in quite some time.

 

THE BAD

Mentioning Eileen’s random act of death was an easy gripe, but there’s also something to be said for Crowley who has all but given up on his friendship with the Winchesters. Every now and then you want to believe that he will always have a softspot for them, but it hardly extends to anyone else including other hunters. His impenetrable wall of carelessness toward that front has in some ways turned him into an aggravating anti-hero who continues to make redundant decisions all in the name of power. If he really intends to control the nephilim for himself, he’s sadly mistaken. I want him to be in control of Lucifer’s escape, but then why let the devil get so close to killing him unless it was yet another way to sell the act? If Lucifer is actually free, he won’t be easy to contain at all.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

Mary’s fall and attempt to convince Ketch to shoot her. It was darkly written and the desperation in her voice really sold the awfulness she was going through. How she will fight it in the finale is anyone’s guess outside of the sheer will she was afraid of losing in the first place, but she’s certainly one of the breakout characters on this season and has been very interesting to watch from start to finish. Ketch’s reaction continues to paint him in a strange light but realistically, he’s very loyal to a fault and has been extremely psychopathic since the start of the season. Mary will either break that mold and see his undoing, or he’ll stay a rancid evil act and become part of the major problem with only Lucifer his better.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Mary was fantastic tonight. Great acting, and the fear of losing herself was directionally efficient. A lot of her demons funneling out of this season led to the crux of her situation since her resurrection and if this turns out to be a one-season arc for her, so be it, was a damn good one.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

Ketch wanting to let the Winchesters and Bevell suffer in death by asphyxiation was entirely too cliché for the villain. He had guns, he could have shot everyone like he did Mick and being a psychopath should have been an easy decision. That was pure laziness on the writing and I don’t have to like it one bit.

 

The CGI landscape with Lucifer was very odd and distracting from the tone of the episode. They mentioned Ireland since Eileen came back from there and that’s immediately where I thought he was based on that entire green hillside. You’d think he’d just show up exactly where his child was right then and there.

 

Escaping the bunker won’t be that difficult I’m certain, but where does that leave Bevell and the Winchesters once they do. She proved on more than one occasion she can’t be trusted and will likely stab them in the back just the same. She may hate Ketch more at this point, but Sam and especially Dean shouldn’t just let her walk away even if she agrees to take the Men of Letters and leave the country, which is what’s probably going to happen if she agrees to a stalemate by the end of this arc.

 

It’s kind of minor, but Lucifer didn’t react when there was no internal explosion of Crowley’s soul when he was stabbed with the angel blade. Lucifer had to have noticed that and if he didn’t, he’s an idiot or too gullible for his own good because he was entirely too ecstatic with being free. And with Crowley’s red spirit, you’d think they would have heard it leaving into the rat. I guess you can be sneaky if you really want to be.

 

OVERALL SCORE

8 out of 10. Mindless hunter killings aside, Supernatural brought Sam and Dean closer to the truth about the Men of Letters and the danger their mother is in including an obsessed Lucifer who’s free and wants his son back. Crowley may be playing a fool’s game but until we know more, on the surface, he was outfoxed, while secretly he probably still set the game up. Bevell is surprisingly the lesser of two evils between her and Ketch and she’ll need Sam and Dean’s help if they’re all going to escape their fate alive. I’m still not on her side, but at least she understands how serious Ketch is with wanting to be the next leader. Crafted in every way a pre-finale episode should be, Supernatural turns end over end to fuel our anticipation for an explosive finale that will hopefully see some big changes coming up. Will Mary be just a single-season character, or will she see the light of day and become another drifter like her husband? Double-episode next week so stay tuned and thanks for reading.

 

 

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A Sashurai’s Review: The Originals – Season 4×07 (Klaus knows good vinyl when he sees it)

TO 4x07

 

SUMMARY

As a resurrected Dominic prepares to find Marcel, Elijah forces Vincent to perform another harvest spell by sacrificing 4 coven witches. Freya attempts to trap Dominic by using Joshua however after doing so, Dominic escapes and seemingly kills Freya. After surviving an attack, Keelin resuscitates Freya but Dominic infiltrates the compound. Hope, having conversed with Marcel in the dungeon frees him as the two escape while Klaus battles and kills Dominic and his men. Vincent finishes the harvest spell and reconnects with the ancestors by using Davina as a link. Later at night, Klaus discusses an alliance with Marcel after Hope is returned home and Freya shows Elijah evidence of the next bone fragment location, which Elijah surmises is in Mystic Falls. Sofya becomes the unwilling host for the Hollow as we find it is a woman possibly connected to Hayley’s bloodline.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

Our stage is set for Alaric’s cameo next week as the Originals gain the upperhand against the villainous hollow who is forced into hiding. Klaus and Marcel are once again mirrored spirits in the same fight and at the moment at ease with their struggle. This episode showcased how you make the best out of the scenes you can with a lot of multiple characters. Everyone fit collectively well and pushed a little further their emotional agenda with possibly Hayley as the odd person out this time. Poignant moments include Vincent confronting Elijah after the spell and Marcel speaking with Hope who is showing a deeper maturity then her parents have realized. And to top it off, we have our connection tease to Mystic Falls, but who and how will show up to aid the Originals? Will we see the town at all, or just a road leading to it? We’ll see.

 

THE GOOD

The show is finally getting its balance of character interactions right. Klaus does his best when confronting and interacting with Marcel. Freya has given in to her feelings with Keelin, and Vincent continues to showcase frustration and anxiety over helping Elijah. Each of those dynamics played an important role in pushing each of them into uncertain and often questionable places such as Elijah forcing Vincent’s hand in performing the harvest ritual by essentially killing 4 girls with the hope that Vincent can bring them back. We also get a return look at Marcel’s thoughts about Klaus, the innocent and less judgmental kind where he admits that he can’t truly hate his father-figure no matter how hard he tries. He’s spoke of these feelings in the past, but it’s good to remember that he was raised a certain way and he never forgot the care Klaus took in for him even if it was a bit barbaric at times.

 

We now have a form and a mark to add some intrigue into the manifestation of the hollow. If she is in fact tied to Hayley’s bloodline or some werewolf pack in-particular then it makes sense that somehow the packs have been responsible for hiding or keeping her bones separated. It could be the longest play the werewolves have been waiting for for centuries, or maybe they were trying to hide their biggest problem considering a werewolf-witch hybrid would also be something of a chaotic blend, much like Klaus and Hayley being Werewolf-vampire hybrids and she was too self-destructive to remain alive. It’s raising a lot of questions and that makes for good speculation on videos and reviews.

 

THE BAD

Not much to gripe about for this episode with the exception of Hayley being a bit underutilized and set to the task of rummaging through her parents garage boxes. When you feature a cast of 6 or more main characters, it can be bothersome to have everyone play a feature role and sometimes they get pushed in the back. Her personal discoveries are what’s keeping her invested in the ensuing plot as her romantic ties to Elijah have been rather sparse as of late. There’s been very few relationship plot-points aside from Freya and Keelin which is very low for a drama like this. Even Vincent hasn’t had any time to be with the lady he had met earlier in the season.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

When Hope spoke with Marcel in the dungeon. I feel like this moment was the real highlight of the episode, a very casual way of reminding us where this show came from with Klaus and Marcel and in a way how he’s talking to a “sister” in Hope. I also felt this was Hope’s first real breakout moment. Kids written on shows can be quite inquisitive but it’s the statement they make that stand out rather than their wonder and her statement is that her parents have been underestimating her. Plus, Marcel treated her very respectfully instead of trying to be conniving or manipulative which speaks volumes to his personality and state of mind. He’s still a good character at heart even when dealing with a father-figure like Klaus.

 

CHARACTER MVP

Klaus and Marcel returned to their old-fashioned alliance for the sake of Hope and the good of the city, but I think Vincent held a little more value in how he handled Elijah’s forceful hand and the ingenuity with using Davina to link to the ancestors. He’s quick on his feet and very robust but there’s always intensity in his speech and his gestures in how he works. Plus, confronting Elijah about his humanity in the end was bold on his part because Elijah doesn’t really like being talked to in that way. You can always spot the offensive boredom in his eyes as he’s quietly deciding whether to rip someone’s heart out or not, but I think for once, Vincent got to him in a more effective way.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

I think they could have had a little more fun with the scene when Josh was turned into Marcel. There was a couple of jokes, but outside of that, they have a golden opportunity to have “Marcel” try to be more like Josh. It was funny and unexpected and it won’t ever happen…like ever again.

 

Freya is a witch, but she’s also human. Her heart stopped for a lot longer than I think it could have while still being resuscitated by normal means. Something was off there medically speaking, but for show with so much supernatural elements going on, I’m surprised all it took was a simple heart-thumping to get her back again.

 

I almost suspected the hollow for being Davina herself, they sounded so similar in voice and age.  Peeking at the preview next week I’m actually stoked her character is also making a comeback of sorts. I think next week is going to be our most impressive episode to date, just throwing that out there. Klaus will no doubt have some sort of vibe with Caroline should she cameo or he mention her. We all know we want to see it and the Originals may be privy to the events that caused Stefan to sacrifice himself, assuming we’re in the present tense of the storyline here and all that has already happened.

 

The thorns really fizzled out in this storyline. I suppose once you introduce things like white-oak stakes and white-oak bullets, nothing really fazes the Originals anymore. It’s so far back in the confines of the plot when Dominic showed up with essentially a thorn-covered branch, there wasn’t any real fear there. I doubt it will play much of a role moving forward except as a clutch moment when we forget about it and it shows up to take out someone we dearly care about, but that’s the only way I can see it mattering at this point.

 

OVERALL SCORE

8 out of 10. Marcel is free, the ancestors are once more connected to the living and the hollow is now possessing Sofya who will be after the other two bone fragments, one of which is in Mystic Falls. Freya and Keelin have now admitted their real feelings toward each other and Hope is proving to be more understanding of the world surrounding her. This was a total win for team Klaus this time, but as always, a win will come with a steep loss soon enough. Elijah may or may not be in need of some soul searching if he continues pushing Vincent into these dire circumstances that will question his humanity. The hollow is on the run and we know for sure Alaric will be in next week episode. Very exciting times if you’re a TVD/TO fan. Thanks for reading.

 

 

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