Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Warehouse 13, Season 4, Episode 15 Instinct

Boone, Wisconsin and a very excitable man charging into a police station to confess at the top of his lungs to a detective Briggs. The man’s lawyer arrives, not amused that a man with no evidence against him just apparently walked into a police station and confessed to a load of cops, she smells a rat. She’s not the only one – or so we can guess by H. G. Wells being the forensic scientist (I miss her!) She takes samples from the accused and notices that his skin is smoothing over, hair disappearing.

And in the Warehouse, Artie is interrupted in his reading (in a hammock no less) by an Earthquake. He reacts to this grumpily. At the Guesthouse , Pete is also grumpy because the person to run the B&B (and therefore cook him breakfast) is actually here to provide therapy for Artie. Myka tells him to cook his own breakfast since he’s sort of an adult.

Hmmm… I think even “sort of” an adult is stretching it

Claudia who, we recall, has been institutionalised in the past, is also not thrilled by having a therapist around. Pete asks Jinks to make scones and Jinks smacks him. Finally, someone gets smacked for their gross stereotyping. Abigail herself is also less than impressed by the scanty breakfast; which is when Artie calls about the Earthquake and asking if anything odd has happened (Claudia scoots over the electric shock she got last week). He calls them all in – Claudia tries to exclude Abigail but Artie overrules her. And Myka gets a call from HG – Helena.

Back to Wisconsin, Myka and Pete go to see Helena and she fills them in on her past – she wasn’t allowed to contact anyone when she had the astrolabe and when she returned it she wanted a new life, away from Artefacts. She tells them about Purcell’s confession and transforming into something else

While Pete briefly considers the case, Myka is more concerned with HG – H.G. Wells does not give up a life of endless wonder for a “normal life.”

Talking to Purcell – who doesn’t even know why he confessed. But insists Donny Schultz who was also accused of the crime is innocent but can’t provide his alibi for other reasons. When Myka asks what he was doing before he confessed he has a flashback and recoils in terror. Meanwhile Schultz protests his innocence and screams in the same chair we saw Purcell in in his flashback – he screams, denies he was there – and dies. His face changing as Purcell’s did.

They talk to the DA who is in denial of anything odd happening, even with Schultz’s body turning up from an apparent heart attack. Myke and Pete have also confirmed that he did have an alibi and couldn’t have committed the crime. He’s completely unco-operative and indifferent to the man’s death – it’s an election year he refuses to have any investigation make him look bad. They call Artie and ask if there are Artefacts than can scare people to death and the answer is yes yes oh yes. Loads of ‘em. To narrow it down they focus on the physical change – so need CCTV of when Purcell first arrived to see what actually changed. Myka has a plan to get the video while Pete goes and sees the victim’s family to see if it’s a revenge Artefact.

Y’know, this whole unco-operative thing is probably why secret service credentials aren’t the best ones to have.

Myka tracks down HG Wells who again says she doesn’t want to get involved – and in her house is also Nate and a child called Adelaide who has been taught Sherlock Holmes reasoning by H.G. and they know her as “Emily”. H.G. quickly gives a false history of she and Myka being at college together when Nate invites her in. Nate’s Adelaid’s father; H.G. has a family. Myka asks for her help and H.G. says she can’t – so Myka invokes Adelaid’s love of Amazing Adventure and how H.G. should have one more for her.

Yeah it didn’t make sense to me either.

Into the police station where the bisexual H.G. Wells convinces the cops to let her past claiming she’s giving Myka a tour of the station to impress her – as she’s sure the cops have done themselves in the past. With the CCTV they see Purcell as bestial, almost like a Neanderthal. They call Pete to tell him and he tells them that the victim’s family wasn’t all revenge happy but that a cop, Briggs, came to them and creeped them out with a big speech about getting them justice. Looking through more CCTV they see that Briggs had his cuffs out and was ready and waiting for Purcell when he came in.

They break into the cop’s house, guns primed but he’s not there. Artie tells them that a primal regression Artefact could change the brain as well – going to the brain’s limbic system and setting the flight and fight response to extreme levels (hence scaring people to death – or confession). The artefact could be ancient – even prehistoric and possibly incredibly powerful, which means the downside would be as well – especially if it’s making his brain more primitive, more predatory.  Myke finds a file – he has a lot of information on H.G. Wells

On that note, Briggs goes to see Nate and confronts him about H.G.’s secret identity which, of course, he knows nothing about. Briggs decides to use him to pass on a message to Pete and Myka to back off - and points the Artefact at him – causing a glowing orange predator skull to form around his hand and make Nate cower in terror. Until H.G. comes out of the house, beats Briggs to the ground and pins him and tells him how easy it would be to kill him. But Nate is suffering by his car and H.G. lets Briggs go to check on him. Briggs runs as Myka and Pete arrive and drops the Artefact which Pete and Myka bag. Nate can breathe again.

A quick search and Pete finds the Artefact – the jaw bone of a giant prehistoric Hyena that ate people; causing primal fear. The person he’s explaining this to is a very confused and lost Nate and he’s extra freaked out that H.G. Wells isn’t the Emily he knew. Pete says he can’t tell her secrets but does assure him that while she isn’t Emily, she is much more and that no-one will protect his family better. Meanwhile Myka is putting her foot in it – saying that H.G. has fixated on the family because Adelaid is the same age as her daughter, Christina. In “I can’t believe you said that” fashion, she tells H.G. she’s giving up who she is to chase a ghost.

At which point she’s probably lucky Nate gets a call saying Briggs has kidnapped Adelaid. He wants his Artefact back. Nate can’t understand why they’re not calling for help – but Pete points out they are the help – he doesn’t know any of them, he doesn’t trust them and he just wants them to give the Artefact back. H.G. tries to comfort him but he walks off. She’s in tears and tells Myka she’s right – she can’t have a normal life she just destroys everything. Which is kinda not what Myka was saying and she desperately tries to reverse it. H.G. goes off to where she keeps her hidden weapon – causing Nate even more confusion.

But Myka drives off on her own, determined to stop Briggs by herself while Pete tries to keep everyone calm. This is not a good plan. This doesn’t even resemble a good plan. Why such a fool plan? Because Myka’s having her own guilt fest to match H.G.’s and blames herself for getting H.G involved at all.

Away from Myka’s guilt, H.G. looks for clues around the house and Pete examines hyena hunting tactics – between them they come up with where Briggs is – and that he’s not working alone.

Which Myka doesn’t know and walks into an ambush – Briggs and the DA (who was such an obvious villain) working together. The DA has a huge rant about people getting off on “technicalities” and that he can’t let Myka or Adelaid go because they’ll stop him. Myka hits on Briggs not being as affected by the jawbone as  the DA and confronts him about killing little girls – and points out that the DA knew Schultz was innocent. While they argue, Myka hits both of them and runs.

H.G. and Pete arrive and Pete reminds an irritated H.G. not to kill anyone – it’ll piss off Myka. They split up, Pete decides to speak before teslaing people because he’s special like that. H.G. has no such compunction and beat Briggs unconscious with a metal bar with even a whisper of warning. And Pete decides to physically attack the DA and try to cuff him rather than use his tesla. I have no idea why. This gives the man chance to use the skull on him before Myka can rescue him with her tesla and neutralise her. Naturally he tries to get Myka to promise to no cave man jokes – she refuses.

H.G. goes into the back room and finds that Adelaid has managed to break her bonds and now lies in wait with a metal bar – bravo.

Around the Warehouse, Artie uses a device to show the FISH, a flying-saucer looking thing that hovers over the Warehouse and hides it from any kind of aerial surveillance and in doing so constantly scans what’s really there, monitoring the Warehouse from above. The scan shows that the earthquake didn’t move the ground – just the Warehouse. Back to the Warehouse – and yes Artie brought his segway and yes it has a radio with his playlist recorded.

In the Warehouse there’s another tremor and Claudia tries to get Artie to send Abigail away for her own safety – Artie doesn’t buy it and notices Claudia’s antagonism.

The shaking continues and Jinks worries that the old building could shake apart (and Artie steals Claudia’s zing – no fair!) Claudia also keeps getting zapped which she ignores and hides. Based on an idea Abigail has about earthquake sensors in California, Artie and Claudia spout technobabble about sensors that are already in the Warehouse they can use to track the epicentre.  They track it and Artie sets off (grumpily shouting at the others for not knowing the way).

They find a big glowing sparky blue ball of badness at one of the expansion joints – when the Warehouse automatically gets bigger to fit in more Artefact – apparently they’re jammed (and Claudia’s still caught on the “warehouse automatically expands” part).

The joints were created by Einstein to create matter from energy – they suck energy in and produce matter expanding the Warehouse. But they’re jammed – Abigail figures out the rest – the flow of energy with nowhere for the matter to go is causing strain so they need to cut the energy until they figure out why they’re jammed. Claudia is impressed by how quickly Abigail has adapted to talking in Freakinese and Artie praises her. Jinks has an idea to just cover the joints with neutraliser

Claudia covers yet another shock and she and Jinks go to the Schoningen Armoury to find a “goo shooter” (and yes, Claudia is glad that Pete isn’t there to make an innuendo of that).  And once in the armoury, Jinks confronts Claudia about the shocks. Her theory is the Warehouse is mad at her for stabbing Artie but won’t talk to Artie while Abigail can hear for fear it’s taken as a sign of mental illness, given her history. But Jinks skewers the lie (remember his lie detector power) and says its something else. And another shock nearly drops a grenade on Claudia

Meanwhile Artie identifies the problem – a spike from the trans-continental railway has got jammed in the joints – it’s a spike that pulls things together. Claudia and Jinks arrive with their goozuka. They try to use a tall ladder artefact for Jinks to get high enough and close enough to use the goozuka, but the rungs break, trapping Jenks high up and, when dodging the debris, Artie twists his ankle. That leaves Abigail and Claudia to work together to use the goozuka getting as close as they can.

Seeing how close they need to get, Claudia hands the goozuka to Abigail. Abigail asks why and Claudia spills – the Warehouse has been shocking her for days and it’s too dangerous for her to go in. Asked why she doesn’t tell anyone, Claudia admits it is because she doesn’t think she will be made Caretaker if the Regents find out – and she’s realised how much she really wants to be Caretaker one day. Abigail cuts off her ramble to a) assure her she isn’t going to snitch to the Regents and b) maybe the shocks were trying to get her attention and if she wants to be Caretaker – go Care Take!

Claudia walks through the swirling wall of energy into the calm at the centre; perfectly positioned to use the goozuka, she neutralises the energy and the spike – allowing the Warehouse to expand again. Claudia fully deserves her swagger afterwards, even if covered in goo.

Aftermath and Abigail talks to Claudia and hits on her not having much positive experience with therapy. She offers to help – or not – as Claudia wishes. And she doesn’t use electroshock.

H.G. Wells is staying with Nate and Adelaid and hopes to explain things to Nate in time. Myka and Pete both tell her she needs to fight for it and make this home, this life work for her. Myke and H.G. reaffirm their friendship and arrange to meet again – coffee next time. Or saving the world. It’s all good.

I am really glad to see Abigail being integrated into the team as well as she is being – it gives me hope that she may be a long term character, though the actor seems to be heavily involved in other projects. I think it might, perhaps, be a trifle contrived how much they’re forcing her examples of “look what a valuable contributor she is” especially considering her contributions are not in her field of expertise (though the group definitely needs a therapist all things considered). I much preferred moments when she rapidly analysed Claudia, for example. Still, if it is forced and contrived, I’m happier with that than her being relegated to an outlier or a bit part (which is the awkward place Jinks can fall into) or a complete background character like Leena.

And I hate hate hate hate whole “technicalities” bullshit, you see it all the time in the media but half the time in real life it means that the cops have done a shoddy job of respecting basic rights or maintaining anything resembling a reasonable chain of evidence – or, quite often, simply haven’t proved their case.  It’s a tired meme to try and justify endless cop shows with police shredding the rule book like it’s somehow a good thing.

The episode itself wasn’t bad – a bit monster of the weeky, but I do like H.G. Wells.