Sunday, August 5, 2012

Hex, Season 2, Episode 6: With a Little Help From My Friends: Part 2

As a baby, Malachi aged incredibly fast – he was born after less than a month’s pregnancy, and he was a toddler mere weeks after birth. This has continued – and now Malachi, at most a year old, is a strapping young man in his late teens. And Azazeal, lord of the Nephilim, Fallen Angel, Demon, master of infernal forces is faced with the challenge of a teenaged boy. Particularly Malachi’s habit of leaving the church while Ella is still at large and looking to kill him- something Azazeal laments about throughout the episode. Azazeal has also brought his demonic fairy, Perie, home as well – it turns out she’s one of the first women who tempted the angels to fall from heaven; and Azazeal uses her to try and keep Malachi busy.

Ella is, of course, not in any shape to go Malachi hunting, still in the mightily unpleasant throws of withdrawal, crashing at Leon’s friend, Max’s, under the care of Leon. Leon’s also worried because Ella seems to be getting worse – but they don’t trust anyone to get help.

Thelma’s worried that the hospital succeeded and Ella may be permanently stripped of her powers. She wants to tell Leon the truth, let him see Thelma and be brought into the mystical world so he knows what he’s risking by helping them. Ella denies it – he’s just a normal guy and she accuses Thelma of being lonely. I think this is meant to make Thelma look selfish – but doesn’t she have a right to be lonely? Is it so wrong for her to want to speak to someone? Even Leon? Ella urges Leon to leave but he refuses to abandon her, especially in that state. If she’s well and doesn’t want him, fine, but he’s not going to leave her sick and alone.

Leon has other worries – he has run out of money and, in desperation, he calls Tom, his room-mate and friend for help (though Tom is watched by Jez agent Roxeanne). Roxanne does her very best to fill Tom with her passive aggressive little manipulations about the trouble Leon’s in and how he needs help and how him delaying just makes everything worse. Worried, Tom breaks and tells Roxanne he’s talked to Leon, that Leon needs cash and that he’s staying with an ex-student of the school, Max. Of course Roxanne rushes of to tell DemonPriestHeadmaster Jez.

He heads on over to strangle Ella while she’s weak and helpless. And her powers don’t work – she can’t even hit him with a lamp with them! She can pick up a pair of scissors and stab him though, which she does. And it’s one of those rewind and watch again moments, deeply satisfying. It doesn’t kill him – he starts to turn Nephilim and Ella runs from the building, into the rain and collapses

Jez gets to go to Azazeal, Malachi and new demonfairy to explain the scissors in his neck and how Ella, with no powers, got away from him. Azazeal is not amused and quite scathing about it.

Ella is found by a passing good Samaritan and Thelma – but Thelma can’t call Leon to the scene because, of course, he can’t see or hear her. Which is frustrating to say the least. Leon arrives just in time to run off with Ella to a motel before the ambulance arrives.

And then the next bombshell is dropped, without her powers Ella is mortal. And you don’t see many 500 year old mortals around. She’s dying slowly from the inside. In desperation, Thelma begs Ella to ask Leon to make tea so she can slip Ella’s spirit potion into it – and let Leon see the spirit world.

He drinks the tea and lo he can see and hear Thelma – to which he runs and hides in the bathroom. I just love how impatient and irritated Thelma is by everyone having hysterics and is determined just to wait out Leon’s panic attack. Thelma fills him in on EVERYTHING for an entire season through the bathroom door. Eventually Leon puts it all aside to focus on what is wrong with Ella. They check on Ella – and find she has rapidly aged and is now an old woman as her immortality frays.

Ella knows of one solution – anointed ones can pass through the realm of the dead and be reborn. Her father did it once but it wasn’t apparently something he wanted to make a habit of. But if she dies of old age, she can’t be reborn – she has to die and harness the power of lightning.  Time for Leon to try and enlist Max’s help – who is, understandably, irritated about the state of his flat and the police crawling all over it.

Max does get them the key to a mothballed ICU – all equipment available but dormant because of lack of funding to staff and run it which Leon and Thelma take the rapidly deteriorating Ella to. But Jez, following the police, finds Max who he brings to Azazeal for questioning. Involving lots of talk about Reservoir Dogs, knives and so much cool, calculated menace it deserves its own award. There is gore and slicing and nastiness as they torture him. He tells them that the last he saw of Leon he was asking for resuscitation machines. Malachi, moved by pity, offers Max a quick, painless death rather than suffer what Azazeal and crew intend to do to him – and Max agrees.

In the hospital ICU, Thelma and Leon hook Ella up to the machines and Leon suffocates her with a pillow. But when they use the defibrillator to bring her back, they have been tampered with by demonfairy Perie. Perie mocks their failure – and Thelma hands Ella’s shocky stick to Leon to use to shock Ella. It doesn’t appear to work and Perie walks away all smug.

Then Ella’s heart starts beating. Bye bye Perie. And Ella and Leon have their awwww moment.

There was a lot of epic in this episode, a lot of excitement and a lot of resolution. And some scenes that had just the amount of horror needed to remind us that the bad guys are well and truly bad, nasty and gory. They’ve also established Malachi as a more complicated character than envisaged.

It was a good episode – fun and exciting with lots of blood-fizzing moments.

I do wish that the female villains weren’t all sexual – Perie is a seductress, Roxanne seductress. For that matter, Ella was late to arrive on the scene and kill Cassie because she was seduced. Cassie, of course, gave birth to the demon child because she was possessed and had sex.  There seems to be a recurring theme of sex=bad with only a few exceptions