Sunday, October 21, 2012

Haven, Season 3, Episode 5: Double Jeopardy

 It’s homecoming week at the school, which apparently means a party, with cheerleaders, short skirts – and a creepy man using a camera in a box to get an upskirt video. He takes it home, locks and bolts the door, starts up his computer – and then someone leaps on him – and there’s lots of blood.

In court, Duke is in trouble for parking tickets, taking his time to play word games with Judge Boon and have a little snark at Lynette, the court reporter. Despite his behaviour, Judge Boon has to agree that the tickets are wrong – but not his fake liquor license, so his bar will be closed at 10:00 that night. Duke leaves the court to find a blonde woman in a white dress and a large knife – after puncturing his tires she scratches the paintwork on his truck. Duke runs to get Tommy who seems more amused than anything, especially since she’s disappeared when he turns round again.

Audrey is telling Claire about her dreams – the Colorado kid, the creepy barn and her old boss telling her to stop remembering. Which is a problem since she seems to have obeyed and hasn’t had a memory since. Claire advises a new tactic – treat it like a police case and make a facial composite of the Colorado kid, bringing the memories to real world.

But now it’s crime scene time, to go see Jason Dooley’s home, the nasty peeper who has had his eyes gouged out with a spoon. Nasty. Audrey instantly leaps to the bolt gun killer (and her kidnapper) since he takes body parts as well, but Nathan is more cautious. Haven PD knows about Dooley’s nasty little hobbies uploading upskirt pictures onto the net – he’s slipped through the court on technicalities and worked the system – but there’s a lot of people who’d want to hurt him. And, surprise, surprise, he’s actually alive and stable in hospital.

They go to interview the guy and confirm that he was attacked almost by someone almost too fast to see, but it was definitely a person (it says a lot about Haven that you have to ask that) and trhey didn’t have a gun. What is a question is how the attacker got in since the door was locked and bolted and the fire department had to batter it down – even his motion detectors weren’t tripped. They also have more confirmation that the attacker wasn’t the bolt-gun killer since that attacker removes organs with surgical precision, Dooley’s attacker certainly didn’t. Audrey has her little, understandable, freak out moment that the bolt gun killer is still out there, that she’s followed every lead, even asked the FBI to send her reports of other murders missing body parts and still not getting anywhere. I’m glad that her kidnapping isn’t something that just gets brushed under the rug and it has had a lasting effect on her – too often trauma is just brushed aside on TV

Nathan assures her that he’s trying to infiltrate the Guard and he’s already made contact with Jordan Mckay – the bolt-gun killer is definitely one of them. They also get an image from Dooley’s camera – a partial image of what looks like a woman – definitely not the bolt-gun killer.

Nathan goes to the Gun and Rose diner to meet Jordan and we get a hint of just how much her power to hurt anyone who touches her bothers her – how she hates to use it even when it helps her. She says people have told her that touching her is the worst thing they’ve ever felt. Nathan tries to push for more information on the Guards but she says he can’t just ink loyalty onto his skin – they have a way for him to prove it. There’s a prisoner, Duncan Fromsley, in prison for arson and murder after he burned his house down for the insurance money without realising his son was inside. He’s in prison and has stage 2 cancer and is refusing all treatment, his wife thinks she can convince him to get help if he is closer – they just need Nathan to push for the transfer, if he does this she will vouch for him to the Guards.

At his bar, Duke is kicking out his patrons since he has to close due to his liquor license, he takes the car keys off one drunken patron to stop him driving. He tells them to blame the judge when the woman in white appears again. Every time he looks away she teleports closer, moving at extreme speeds. He closes the door and turns round, and she appears behind him. He runs and grabs a shot gun but she pushes it aside and throws him easily across the room. He runs and hides, grabbing his drunken patron and forcing him against the wall to be quiet – the man accuses Duke of assault while Duke calls the police. The woman in white proceeds to smash all the alcohol bottles in the bar.

Duke spends the night in the cells after being accused of assault and has an appointment with Judge Boon in the courthouse later, something Tommy finds extremely amusing. Duke explains the situation to Audrey and Nathan – he has a blonde Troubled, violent stalker. Audrey, in a classic Audrey leap of logic, connects Duke’s attacker to the possible woman who attacked Dooley and decides that Duke needs to stay with them for safety if he has been targeted. Which is when they get a call about a new victim.

The new victim is Megan Berlin who is in hospital with 22 bone fractures that looks like she’s been dropped from a high building – except she was locked up on the ground floor. She was locked up pending assessment by the child protective services because she was accused of shaking a 6 month old baby. Audrey makes the much more obvious leap – the peeping tom gets his eyes gouged out, the child abuser who shook a baby has injuries similar to what the child would have, Duke doesn’t pay parking tickets and his truck is vandalised, he doesn’t pay his liquor license and his booze is destroyed – everyone is getting “ironic” punishments. Duke panics at this because he is, technically, an unpunished murderer and needs protection. Nathan, being the arse he always is to Duke, suggests a prison cell but Audrey, as someone immune to the Troubles, suggests Duke stay with her. Duke has to joke with that – saying he sleeps in the raw (we don’t get to see that, alas) and Audrey stalks off. Nathan tells Duke she’s just using him as bait – did I mention Nathan’s an arse?

At Audrey’s house they sleep in 3 hour shifts, she the Haven PD coming round every hour and she has a gun. Duke has come prepared with a whole set of kitchen knives – if he can get her to bleed then he can invoke his own Trouble and he thinks he can take her. They try to sleep but Duke is too much of a nuisance and they end up talking about Audrey’s identity issues to which Duke declares that just because Lucy loved Colorado kid, doesn’t mean Audrey will today – just because bolt gun killer thinks so doesn’t make it true; a dangerous psychopath who collects body parts isn’t the best source of information. But Audrey doesn’t know if love can be erased and if she does love the Colorado Kid, that it won’t just come back. Duke comments that they’re both fighting against their supposed fates and ultimately they can’t let his family or Sarah/Lucy drag them down. It gets even sappier from there but just when Duke’s declaring how much he’s happy he met her, she’s fallen asleep.

Which is when the woman in white shows up. Duke manages to stab her – but she doesn’t bleed. Audrey shoots her with a shotgun and she collapses into plaster rubble. But just as they relax she reappears, throws Audrey out onto the balcony and smacks Duke around before disappearing.

Audrey and Nathan consult on the case and decide that it’s a Troubled female vigilante using the Haven Herald crime edition as a guide – since Duke was punished for an assault that he didn’t actually commit, it’s clear she’s punishing people she assumes are guilty and has no ability to actually unerringly discern guilt or innocence. Since Duke has been mentioned Nathan isn’t very helpful and has to throw in some digs. Still Audrey thinks if they don’t let out the secret of the murder, the vigilante won’t know about it and Duke will be safe – from there they check their sketch artist pictures of the woman and ask anyone in the court if they’ve seen her. Until they see her themselves – in a mural of Lady Justice on the wall.

On to Vince and Dave who, of course, know everything but tell nothing. Audrey theorises that the woman who posed for the picture is an ancestor of a modern resident, especially since the Troubles run in families. But Vince and Dave say there was no model, the painter just chose a picture of “idealised female beauty”. But when Audrey tells them about the plaster she shattered into, they worry and call it a golem. Many myths and legends are confused as Troubles, as the Trouble manifests how the Troubled person sees is. Golems obey their masters, are impossible to stop and indestructible. Audrey decides to look for its master – but Nathan is stuck on infiltrating the Guards. Audrey doesn’t want him to compromise himself or go against his ethics for her, since it won’t change anything in her eyes but he argues he’s not doing it for her, he’s doing it to stop a murderer.

In police station, in between Duke taunting Tommy, they discover all of the people who are victims are people Judge Boon felt he had to let off easily.  Find all people judge boon let off easy.

Which is who Nathan is talking to – to try and get his dodgy criminal transfer for the Guards – which goes very smoothly, the judge is very willing to take bribes in single malt and has friends who are willing to let their strings to be pulled and he makes the call easily. Nathan leaves and gets a call from Audrey telling him Boon is the Troubled vigilante and rushes back in – to find Boon dead, impaled and posed as Lady Justice with scales and a blindfold. Probably not the guy.

Nathan confirms to Audrey that Boon was corrupt which is why he was treated so harshly – Lady Justice took it personally. Unfortunately before Nathan got the transfer, he saw the judge releasing several teenaged vandals who had just beheaded a statue – and they quickly set Tommy to watch the teens lest they be beheaded.

Audrey checks the documents again and finds that the paperwork for Duke’s assault had hardly reached Boon’s desk before Duke was attacked. Duke thinks it must be someone in the police - and accuses Tommy, but Audrey finds 1 person present in all trials.

Lynette, the court reporter. Duke has a dramatic and not too realistic rant in which he confesses to murder in the face of Lynette’s judgemental, righteous attitude who believes he doesn’t feel guilt and isn’t sorry (touching a nerve because Duke is torn by guilt over the murder). Lady Justice appears and holds him at sword point. She’s been pushed to the edge by sitting in the court every day seeing monsters get away with it, she hates living with it.  Audrey intervenes, saying he only killed people because it saved hundreds of lives, telling her he’s a good man. Apparently, Audrey’s word is all it takes to completely shake Lynette’s world view and decide she’s an awful person who has hurt so many good people unjustly. Which makes her evil, her the monster who should be punished – Lady justice drags her into the painting where she fades into paint.

Yeah I kind of glossed over the ending there because it annoyed me – I hate it when villains are talked to death by the hero, especially when the hero’s speech is so shallow. “You’re a bad man and deserve to die!” “No, he’s good!” “He is? Oh WHAT HAVE I DONE! I SHALL KILL MYSELF!” really kind of shallow there. Especially when we’re talking about a confessed murderer whose murder is justified by Audrey just saying so.

Nathan tells Jordan about the prison transfer and arranges to see her – but she says she’s not at work today. Nathan, just outside the diner, can see she clearly is and that she’s lying. He follows her and notices she’s not wearing gloves. She stops at a gas station where the guards who are transporting the prisoner pause and, asking for directions, she touches them, they fall to the ground passing out in pain. She stands for a second, distraught over them before opening the prison van and helping the prisoner into a getaway car. One of the guards wakes up and stats to shoot her – but Nathan moves in and knocks him unconscious.

In the aftermath, Duke and Audrey have a bonding moment about Duke being a good man and yes she meant it. Audrey tells Nathan about her plan to get Claire to do composite of Colorado Kid – Nathan suggests Vince but Audrey has finally realised that the Teague brothers are not trustworthy. She asks him about the prisoner transfer and he lies and says it all went smoothly - then destroys a  fax coming in about the escaped prisoner.

He goes to see Jordan to confront her about the lies – Duncan didn’t even have cancer, but he did kill his son. Jordan claims Duncan did it by accident by having a nightmare – because he’s Troubled. And, in prison, they were cutting his sleep med which meant he had a very good chance of causing a similar fire in prison. The Guard will do anything it can to protect and help the Troubled – no matter what. Nathan brushes that aside and, instead, talks about how much it hurt Jordan to use her power – he touches her and it’s a powerful, emotional moment that leads to them kissing. The love triangle just became square shaped

Audrey, with Claire works on the photo fit but she’s still blocking – because if Audrey gets these answers her whole life could change. Before they get any further, Audrey gets an email from the FBI about murder victims with missing body parts – and finds another victim of the bolt-gun killer. A woman, who had her chin removed. She jerks up and spreads out the paperwork with a horrible thought – is he taking trophies or is he using the parts to build a woman? (Audrey logic, don’t question)

Which is where we end – watching the bolt-gun killer sew body parts.  

So there’s a lot about love and relationships in this episode. It’s interesting to see Audrey talk about her fear of her loving the Colorado Kid with Claire since it adds far more weight to her reasons for pushing Nathan away - “to protect him” seemed weak, even “I’m going to disappear in a month” didn’t seem like a good reason to go slow particularly especially if they could try and find a way out – but fear that she’s going to instantly fall in love with another man, that’s a good motive. Add in her conversation with Duke “You’re not Lucy or Sarah” and Claire telling her she’s blocking and we’ve got a lot of troubled angst there which would be wonderful to explore – Audrey fearing the memories that may change everything she knows and even who she is. She isn’t Lucy or Sara – but she’s not really Audrey either – and if she has Lucy and/or Sarah’s memories who does she become? It’s interesting and I’d like to see it explored

Rather than Duke’s re-entry into the love triangle and Nathan’s subsequent jealousy. Haven’t we put that storyline to bed? And now Nathan with Jordan? Can we not have these multi-person, need-a-flow-chart romances? They add drama without substance or story, stall character development rather than pursue it and waste time that could be spent questioning Vince and Dave. And it’s been three seasons just make Nathan and Audrey a couple already, the foreplay is getting tiresome.