Sunday, October 13, 2013

Haven, Season 4, Episode 5: The New Girl

Everyone takes a second to grasp that Audrey now thinks she’s Lexi (I would say she doesn’t remember who she is, but then she wasn’t really Audrey either) and Jordan decides to hold people at gun point and tell Lexie to shoot Nathan.

Of course, I have to question whether Nathan counts as her true love given she can’t remember him, but Jordan doesn’t exactly do the long term planning thing. Duke points this out and Jordan decides she’ll just shoot people for funsies until Dave yells at Vince to control his trigger-happy Guard and Duke punches one of them – getting blood on his skin. He yells at Nathan to run while he unleashes his silver-eyed wrath on the guard.

The Guard catch him, Dave makes some more cryptic statements which we never seem to get the answer to and the Guard prepares to kill Nathan – an Lexie fires her gun and threatens to shoot them if they shoot Nathan (or cheekbones, as she calls him) including one bullet at Jordan’s feet (Jordan decides she can’t stop Audrey – really? Did she forget Lexie is immune to Troubles?) Duke tries to end the tension by telling Vince he knows how to end the Troubles.

Back to Vince’s office and Jordan wants to magically turn Lexie back into Audrey (not doable – Vince said they tried that once) or find the Barn (it’s gone) – Jordan keeps making noise without actually coming up with any viable plan, basically resting on “kill Nathan and hope” until Vince finally ends the argument and agrees that the Troubles are destroying the Town – and to call Dwight.

Audrey is with Nathan, examining his cut (actually making it hurt with her touch that, of course, turns off Troubles). Audrey gives Nathan a quick run down on who Lexi is before Vince collects them – to take them to a crime scene. Tell me you’re not interrupting this meta for a Trouble of the Week!

And Duke’s big plan? To arrange for Lexi to fall in love with Nathan – so then killing him is bound to work (assuming that even works without the barn) which means spending time with her solving the Troubles; since Audrey always solves the Troubles regardless of which incarnation she is. Nathan isn’t a big fan of this plan.

The Trouble is some guy, Josh, who lost his ever loving mind and attacked someone for no reason, now locked in a back room. The guy rants about “trusting her” then cuts his own throat. Messy. Welcome to Haven, Lexi!

They talk to Katie friend of the deceased Josh and she tells them her boyfriend Tyler is also in hospital after randomly driving his car into a brick wall – the police interviews are extra fun since, of course, most of the force thinks Audrey is a detective and they’re trying to cover that up. Duke is also not happy that Nathan is making not attempt to get close to Lexie

To the hospital to speak to Tyler, paralysed from his car crash, who says, before his crash, that Katie gave him a funny look which controlled his body. Audrey also helps herself to a 2 second brain scan just in case, Duke keeps playing awkward gangly cupid and Audrey asks the burning question – why stay in Haven anyway? I wish I knew Audrey.

And all theories about Katie go out the window when she whispers to her police escort “it worked again” and “I had this coming” before stepping out into traffic. We knew she was a red herring, far too early in the episode – Haven is nothing if not painfully predictable. Speaking of – time for some Nathan angst and Duke and Nathan sniping.

The cover story for Lexie is that she has amnesia – I suppose in Trouble town they’ve certainly seen stranger. And poor Jennifer feels left out now Audrey is here taking all the attention, especially when Duke plays the “nooo it’s far too dangerous for your delicate self!” card.

While talking over the investigation, Nathan tries to shut Audrey out – since she’s not a detective – but she uses her bartender insight (which is apparently a thing) point out Katie was feeling guilty. In the true tradition of Haven she makes a flying leap of logic and decides Katie was hooking up with Josh and cheating on Tyler – and the paralysed Tyler is behind it all.

Back to the hospital – and Tyler’s missing, a dead man is in his bed. CCTV shows Tyler controlling his nurse like a puppet, using the nurse to transport his body out of the room before returning the nurse to Tyler’s old bed and having him kill himself. But his medical chart shows the cost – every time he possesses someone, Tyler has a seizure and his body loses some motor-function. His body becomes more damaged each time.

Cut to Duke calling them for help – they go to him and are quickly disarmed and held at gun point. Tyler has possessed Duke. He could kill them, but it’s time for the convoluted exposition part of the episode where we confirm that all of the massive leaps of logic are actually true. He locks them up and leaves.

Meanwhile at the Grey Gull Jordan drops in on Duke’s big brother – but just for the booze. Though Dwight arrives before she does anything unfortunate – which is pretty much expected with Jordan. Dwight takes her to his research cavern to show they’ve confirmed that Lexie needs to kill Nathan – and Jordan decides to go for the path of most murder and decides that Audrey causes the Troubles – that the Troubles are really all just her Trouble; so Duke, with his Trouble ending power, should just kill her! See, take 1, add 1 and get 8 million!

Y’know, Jordan’s whole “kill people and see if it works” research method is of… limited utility. Especially since she’s just trying random guesses then wanting to murder someone to see if it’s right – but then, leaps of logic are common in Haven.

Duke arrives at the Gull and meets Wade and decides to brainstorm with Wade about a Troubled person (wait wait wait, Wade knows of the Troubles? Really? I thought he was still in the dark? Which was why Duke couldn’t get him to leave?), his big question – how would a person with a Possession Trouble be able to stay in one of the bodies he’s possessed (Tyler wants to stay in Duke). Wade suggests killing his original body (possible – except Duke killing a Troubled person would end their Trouble and stop the possession…). Wade realises all too late that Duke is possessed. Duke/Tyler hits him and tries to get the location of the safe from him when Jennifer drives up.

She wants to go back to Boston, Tyler picks up on the subtext (“talk me out of it and say you love me!”) belatedly and invites her to leave with him – and kisses her. Except that’s a bit much for the short duration of their relationship. Still she’s whisked off her feet and goes with him.

Nathan and Audrey have some not-so-quality time together while Nathan learns how different Lexie is from the Audrey he knew; and he doesn’t really like Lexie and offends her by saying he wishes she wasn’t there, he wants Audrey back. Accurate but not easy to hear. Audrey picks the lock, releasing them.

Duke and Jennifer arrives at the hospital and  Jennifer clues in that this isn’t the real Duke – so rather awesomely stabs him in the leg with a pen and steals his gun. Duke runs to the hospital and Jennifer quickly fills in Nathan and Lexie, Wade calling Nathan to add his own revelation about killing Tyler’s body. Lexie is also told that she has Trouble immunity.

Learning this, Lexie insists on going in alone since Tyler/Duke has objects belonging to Nathan and Jennifer so can use them to possess either of them. After some argument and Lexie insisting that this is what she is meant to do, Nathan gives her a gun and she goes in.

She finds Tyler’s body clutching Duke’s drink ticket (the object he uses to possess Duke)  - and Tyler/Duke. She tries to raise doubt in killing his body actually letting him switch bodies – but Tyler would rather take the risk given the motor damage his body has suffered (also Duke’s body is majorly yummy – so, bonus). Tyler/Duke asks Lexie if she’s really willing to die for Duke… she isn’t, she steps aside. Ok that was a revelation – guess Lexie is a bit edgier than Audrey

Tyler/Duke slams a hammer into Tyler’s body – and Duke’s Trouble kicks in. And what I predicated happens – Tyler dies and with him his Trouble, restoring Duke. Duke explains things to Audrey.

Back to the police station and Nathan acknowledges that Lexie is good with the Troubles even if she isn’t Audrey – though Lexie thinks she just got lucky (she did, to be fair), but Nathan notes she went in, she tried which matters. She also guesses that Nathan and Audrey were involved

Duke goes to the Gull for some brother angst – Wade still wants to know the family curse and Duke convinced Jennifer to stay – living in his boat. And remembers that he kissed her and she kissed him back. And Jordan lurks around looking to speak to Wade. Ugh, so she’s going to trigger Wade’s Trouble and get him to murder Lexie? Can we just kill Jordan please?

And Lexie moves back into Audrey’s old flat. And Duke confronts her about just standing aside and letting Tyler kill his old body and take Duke’s. Lexie claims fear but Duke doesn’t buy that, she’s been too brave – he thinks she knew about his curse; Audrey would have known. Audrey curses, turns and hugs him and admits that, yes, it’s her.

Wait… what? Has she been pretending to be Lexie to protect Nathan?

I’m glad for that revelation at the end since it may fast forward things a little; another few weeks of them teaching Lexie all about the Troubles and I may be pulling my hair out. Haven has a problem with pacing. Ever since season 1 it has been a problem – weeks pass with only a slight advancement of any kind of meta, if any.

And I’m finding this worse now because Haven is getting really formulaic. A Trouble happens, the team shows up, everyone gasps. They find a suspect, that person is then proven innocent or dies (therefore proving their innocence) then a tiny clue will cause Audrey or Nathan to make a VAST UNSUPPORTED LEAP OF LOGIC and that will turn out to be magically true. They’ll find the Troubled person, they will – whether malicious villain or confused victim – happily exposition their Trouble at great and convoluted length and then the credits role. Throw in some mysterious Teagues, Jordan wanting to kill someone (for various random reasons) and you have a Haven episode.

It’s getting a little stale. And it’s not even a repeatable formula that can have interesting twists because that BIG LEAP OF LOGIC ruins even the kind of repetitiveness you get in, say, a murder mystery – because that clever “how do they figure that out?” part is missing

We’re also 5 episodes in with no sign of any POC inclusion, which may even be a good thing after the half-assed jobs of the last 3 seasons. We’re 5 episodes and 3 seasons in with nary a GBLT person. And with Audrey being Lexie we now have 2 confused, lost women (Lexie and Jennifer) and one who wants to just kill people randomly until the Troubles go away (Jordan).