“And branded on the beast, the mark of his kin. For none shall live whom they have seen.”
Nick is having a bad night, dreaming about a missing girl they have on a case that’s stalling. He wakes – on the couch where he’s sleeping (they have no spare rooms. That huge house is filled with… I don't know, wardrobes. Big wardrobes). He and Juliette finally have some level of frayed tempers over the whole amnesia thing with Nick being a little irritated over sleeping on the couch for so long.
The actual missing girl has been kidnapped, and we hear her kidnapper, Adrian Zane, talk about selling her one and “feeding” her to keep her in good condition – while burning revealing pictures of her. He opens the door to find Nick and Hank there, asking about the missing woman, Donna Renolds. He works in the same building as she did. While questioning him, Nick sees the photographs he’s burning and tells Hank – the guy woges (are there no human criminals in Portland any more?). Nick kicks him through the back door and chases him, tackling him and bringing him down. He begins punching him, asking where she is, until Hank pulls Nick off the man. The man loses unconsciousness and Nick tells Hank he’s a Wesen.
At the police station they question him and he claims they were photographs of his ex-girlfriend, Jennifer Benson. Consulting with Renard they find that there was no forensic evidence and the fire only shows photo papers, no pictures have been found, without more proof they can’t hold him. Hank suggests to Nick that maybe he’s wrong, after all they have been seeing photos of Donna Renolds – and just because the man’s a Wesen doesn’t make him guilty. The man could have run simply because Nick’s a Grimm.
They let him go, but as they do Nick threatens him about lying – if he’s not telling the truth it’s one thing to lie to a cop, another to lie to a man like Nick. The man freaks out and is lead away. Hank confronts Nick and Nick says he did threaten him and is convinced he knows more and knows where Donna Renolds is. Hank asks what he’s going to do but Nick wants to act alone so Hank doesn’t take any blame for it.
Juliette starts researching Adalind Schade, after she was told last week that the cat scratch was why she was ill, but finds that she’s resigned from her job and disappeared. She’s interrupted by Renard calling her, worried about Nick being agitated lately. Worried that he may be ready to blow up – they arrange to meet to discuss it over coffee (hello there ulterior motive!)
Nick grabs a crossbow and goes to see Monroe in Rosalie’s herb shop (have they just dumped her character and given him the shop now? C’mon where’s Rosalie?) for a “confess your sins” serum. The interaction between them is off – Monroe is as happy and upbeat and rambly as usual, but Nick is curt and impatient
He goes to Adrain’s house, at night, crossbow equipped. He picks the lock, moves in, down to the basement – and finds him dead, chained to the rafters, shirtless, covered in wounds and signs of torture and a pool of blood at his feet. This is when Hank comes in and sees Nick in the middle of this scene.
Nick protests he didn’t do this, waving his crossbow about. Hank asks about it and Nick tells him it’s truth serum, he starts babbling, Monroe just mixed it, he hasn’t even fired it, he’s only just arrived. Hank believes him but says it doesn’t look good, especially with the scene he made in the police station. They see the brands on the dead man – they look like a face made out of the letter G. They hear police sirens and Nick hurriedly disposes of the crossbow in his car while Hank fervently whispers that he hopes the man was guilty (um… no Hank. Torture is always bad. Always). Wu comes out of the car and asks what they’re doing there – they ask him the same thing. He says they got a 911 call, he confessed to everything including the location of the girl. He asks them how they made him confess and they deny they did anything, they got there after.
Wu sees the tortured body and Captain Renard finds Donna Renolds and reassures her they have the guy and sends her to the hospital. He calls Nick and Hank and they tell him they just got on the scene but tell him that the suspect was tortured to death.
Back to the police station for a meeting, they listen to the 911 call from him and hear Adrian confessing while being tortured. There’s no way of identifying the torturer but they all see the symbol branded into his body but don’t know what it means.
Renard has a press conference telling the media about Donna Renolds’s rescue and Adrian Zane’s torture and murder – and they show the symbol on the television – which is seen by Bud, the friendly Eisbiber. Who turns up the volume with a look of shock on his face. Monroe, also watching television, gets the same expression and grabs his phone.
Hank wants to know how to write it up – Nick was at Zane’s house to shoot him with a crossbow, Hank was at Zane’s house to stop Nick doing something like shooting him with a crossbow. Monroe calls Nick to tell him he knows what the symbol means and he needs to come see him. And Bud calls to panic and babble, Nick reassures him, tells him he’s on it which lets Bud relax. He rings off but seems to worry about the “end of the world”.
Monroe tells them that the symbol is an ancient German “G” and he used to have nightmares about the symbol – and it’s the symbol for a Grimm. He tells them about cautionary tales young Wesen were told about the worst of the worst, Grimms with no compassion or conscience. They branded the symbol into their victims and into the houses in villages that had Grimms in them – it’s the symbol of Wesen pogroms. And there used to be death squads of Grimms wandering the countryside, slaughtering any Grimm they past. Monroe thought they were gone, relics of a bygone era. Hank comments that it’s ironic that this guy got a confession when they couldn’t Monroe comments on the “end justifies the means” thinking – but Nick thinks the ends did justify the means for Donna Renolds. Monroe warns Nick that his own reputation will be trashed if they don’t stop the rampaging Grimm soon.
In Vienna, Eric’s chauffeur, alone, gets a call from Renard asking about the marauding Grimm. He also didn’t think they still existed. Renard wants him to find out if the family sent it.
When he gets home Nick gets a call from a distorted voice accusing him of failing as a Grimm and how Donna Renolds would be dead if it were down to him. After he hangs up, a hooded figure plays with a video of him torturing Zane, compressing it and uploading it
In the police station the next day, they find the video went viral. Nick tells Hank about the call as well. They go question Donna Renolds and her family – her parents have an alibi (they know they didn’t do it but have to ask) and ask Donna Renolds for more information about her kidnapping – which confirms she was taken in a van and that Zane has an accomplice.
They find the van on CCTV when they return to Renard at the police station and track to van to a Richard Burnham. They quickly move in for the arrest – but when he sees Nick he woges and accuses him of killing “him” and now going to kill him.
Time for that awkward coffee date between Renard and Juliette where they discuss how much stress Nick’s been under and how much Renard wants to help (help turn one of their 8 empty rooms into a bedroom for Nick, Renard!) Juliette confesses how hard it is – that nick is a complete stranger and he knows everything about her; and she feels like she’s just starting out with you – him him! She totally meant him! Uh-huh.
Back at the police station Richard thinks Nick’s going to kill him and the crime scene techs find an immense amount of evidence in the van, including Donna Renold’s purse complete with ID. They go back to book him – only he’s been cut loose, someone let him go and he walked out the door. They send a team to the suspect’s house and… find his body all mangled and tortured. With the same G symbol. Nick points out that only police new about this guy – and Nick gets a call “you let him get away” “he was Wesen, all the evidence you need”. And he thinks he’s doing what Nick should be doing
At the police station Bud is there to see Nick, in panic wogeing into his beaver form. The lodge is worried after seeing the footage on the internet. He says the lodge trusts him, but they’re also worried and don’t want to stop trusting him.
Wu has CCTV of someone opening the door to let the kidnapper out – he avoids the camera –but in the reflection in the door glass they see Inept Intern Ryan (who didn’t see that coming? There had to be some reason for him to be around!)
And outside, Ryan kidnaps Bud. Hank and Nick hear that Ryan was trying to catch up with Bud and hurry to Ryan’s address. They find his mother on the sofa, surrounded by rubbish and drinking from a booze bottle. She and Ryan don’t get on and Ryan is moving out soon. In Ryan’s room they find an entire wall plastered with pictures of Nick and newsclippings about him.
In a room Bud is chained up by his wrist in his workshop and Ryan, in a robe and mask, heats up his branding iron. He’s incensed that Nick, the Grimm, is a friend of Budd’s. A Grimm who doesn’t kill Wesen is not a Grimm and all Wesen must be killed. Bud has his very reasoned “I don’t want to offend you but I have to disagree there” counter arguments (got to love Budd).
Hank and Nick arrive – hank frees Budd while Nick easily chases down Ryan, rips of his mask, punches him and holds him at gunpoint. Ryan protests at how much he used to admire Nick and how Nick should be helping him. He rants on about cleaning up Nick’s mess, saving Donna Renolds, all Wesen should die – and then he Woges into a fanged, scaly… thing. He turns away to try and stop Nick seeing. He says all Wesen must die and asks Nick to kill him, Nick begs him not to do this, then punches him rather than shooting him – and handcuffs him. He’s arrested and Wu thinks they need better psych evaluations on their interns.
Budd thanks them for the rescue (I like Budd) and makes everyone uncomfortable. Hank asks if Ryan is a Grimm, Nick says he isn’t – whatever he is it’s not what he wants to be.
To the relationship issue – Renard returns Juliette’s sunglasses to her…. And kisses her. When he does she remembers that it was his kiss that awakened her. They kiss again, but she backs off and closes the door.
Ok, this episode started very shakily to me. I felt like they were trying to force the idea that Nick was constantly misjudging Wesen, expecting the worst etc. I like very much that they had Hank, who had been freaked out by Wesen be his moral compass, but it also felt like a brief re-writing of Nick’s character. Sure there’s lack of sleep and the tension of knowing there’s a missing woman he can’t help… but still, it felt like they forced this on Nick’s character so they could draw comparisons and suggest Nick’s not far from becoming the same..
At least I started liking that Hank was there keeping Nick in check – but then going on “I hope he’s guilty” and “he got a confession when we couldn’t” and Nick following that up with how the ends justified the means for Donna Renolds. I dislike this suggestion that the torture could have been justified or was ok if the victims are guilty of crime.