Saturday, December 10, 2011

Grimm, season 1, episode 5: Danse Macabre

After missing an episode last week, Grimm is now showing 2 episodes, one on Thursday night, one on Friday night. We’re going to cover these today and tomorrow.

And we start with a new beginning - this week’s Grimm starts with a quote from a fairy tale – the pied piper. I wonder if it’s because the tales were too obscure for some viewers?
And the theme today is music – a DJ with a rave full of very happy people and a string quartet who are considerably less happy with a very unhappy teacher.

Oh and rats – lots and lots of rats eating said teacher while he’s trapped in the car. I think being ratted to death is up there in my top 10 ways of not to die. Uckies Uckies Uckies.

The trail of oh-so-obvious clues leads to Geiger pest control – and the DJ (Roddy, but I’m going to call him DJ Ratty) from the rave a violinist playing to the rats and the DJ’s father. And we have ratty creature – viewed through the Grimmvision. His dad hits Hank for grabbing the kid and they all. We follow interviews where Hank and Nick try to play the understanding ones with Older rat guy and kid rat guy – and generally making doing a pretty poor job of it. The kid’s alibi as a DJ checks out though, alas, they have to let him go.

And then the autopsy reveals the teacher died of a heart attack, not being ratted to death – and, more, finds fibres in the rat’s guts in the school colours.

And we have a Romeo & Juliet relationship between DJ Ratty and one of the rich girls at the private school and we begin to see a lot more classism coming in – clearly the students and their families have vast amounts of contempt for the poor DJ Ratty. Rich lady runs down to the police to demand that the police act like the proper servants of the rich and deal with that nasty poor person.

Nick heads off to see Eddie, his Grimopedia about the Ratty people – Rynegan (sp?). I do like Eddie – sarcastic, snarky and always funny – I want more Eddie! I also like how he’s nice and pleasant and good now – but he still can carry his menace and dominance around with him when he wants. 

Anyway, Eddie as the cello player is going to hang out with DJ Ratty, the violinist. He’s reluctant, but charmed by DJ Ratty’s obvious talent. I love Eddie, really love Eddie – best character on the show.
In the meantime the 3 guys on the string quartet are worrying because they were the ones who unleashed the rats – and got Roddy kicked from school to make room on the quartet. Oh and they’re going to DJ Ratty’s next rave. Oh and the police are searching Rich Kid’s car and link it forensically with the rat that was autopsied.

Whether Eddie’s heart to heart with DJ Ratty would have worked we don’t know because the gaol calls to let Roddy know his father has been injured and can’t receive visitors for 48 hours – sending him into a little rampage. Breaking stuff, releasing the rats and doing a full on pied piper that made me itch to just watch.

To the rave – and that much open flame in a rave is just a bad idea. But then so’s the ratty carpet. BIIIIG showdown time – confessions are made, there are lots of rats and a terrible terrible musical pun. Grimm Nick decides to try and play judgmental with DJ Ratty, but, really it doesn’t come off well because DJ Ratty is well aware that there was zero chance of there being any consequences for the rich kids if he hadn’t acted – can you really judge people for taking things into their own hands when they have no reason to trust the system?

Nick is also beginning to see how much Grimms are feared by most super natural beings, even his fridge repairman who turns furry runs yelping form his house when he realises Nick is a Grimm. It’s clear that other Grimm’s are dangerous, scary people who tend to kill first and ask questions later. It also gives Juliette, Nick’s fiancée, an insight into Nick being a Grimm – no doubt consequences later!

This episode kind of looked at various issues – class and school yard bullying, waved at them, but didn’t really touch them. We got a shallow nod but it feels token at best, if that, about being an outsider and pushed too far, but yeah didn’t really go there. There was a chance of showing how the system can fail the poorest, but it was poorly shown and pretty much undermined and made it look more like DJ Roddy was overreacting/assuming the worst of a system that would help him really.

I’m pretty much resigned to Hank being a side-kick, though he’s not an awful side-kick as far as side-kicks go and Sergeant Wu is going to play a decent, but minor role. I’m kind of sad that and Sergeant Wu go out drinking and then they talk about Nick, sure it’s supposed to be about them spotting his special Grimmy instincts, but still – even when off duty Nick is the topic and the centre. 

And Hank meets up again with evil!lawyer!reaper Adelaine Shade and they go out to dinner with evil!reaper!policechief! in the background. Dum-Dum-Dum. Is this meta-plot? Actual meta-plot? Maybe?

There continues to be utter GBLT erasure and, by this stage, that pretty much means that’s the way of the series.

All in all it was a fun episode, an amusing episode. It didn’t quite have the bait and switch of the early Grimms but it was still nuanced enough to not be the straight up monster hunt I so dreaded when it started. We’re also seeing hints of meta – with Juliette finding out about his Grimmness and the evil!Reaper!lawyer but it’s still only hints, and vague hints at that. I hope we start to see some actual long term plot soon