Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Beauty and the Beast, Season 2, Episode 6: Father Knows Best

After waking up from a night of Cat memory dreams, Vincent drops in on Cat who is merrily beating on a punching bag to vent her frustration about Agent Reynolds, newly revealed as her biological father. Actually, that’s too strong – he hasn’t been newly revealed as her biological father, it’s more she and Gabe saw a photograph and made the massive lemming like plummet of logic to believe he’s her biological father. She’s frustrated and has doubts about Vincent’s suggestion that she talk to Reynolds about it – after all if he wanted to be in her life he’s had ample opportunity to do so. He also foolishly offers to stand in for her punching bad and she kicks him in the jaw – followed by romantic gushiness (that whole break they were taking is well and truly over).

He has other good news – he only has 2 more missions and then he’s done and they can ride off into the sunset! Yay! Cat is less thrilled – because those missions mean 2 more dead people and even if they are “bad” she has suddenly, rather belatedly, remembered that she’s a cop and she shouldn’t be all that happy about him killing people because a shadowy person on the phone said they deserve it, honest. Having spent a second on this minor moral dilemma, they move on.

And we move on to the police station with Gabe telling Tess he’s worried and wants Tess to help cross reference lots of paperwork to try and find Vincent’s handler. Gabe points out that whoever is Vincent’s handler must have been close to Muirfield (therefore morally dubious to begin with) and is now clearing up Muirfield’s mess – all the Beasts. So surely Vincent is included in that? It must be really hard for Gabe to be the only one of this show with an iota of common sense. Unfortunately he can’t have too much sense or he wouldn’t fit on the show so he isn’t going to tell Cat. Faced with the possibility of a conspiracy, Tess wants to talk more about Gabe’s crush on Cat – because she is freaking obsessed with relationships and always has been.

Back to Vincent with Reynolds passing in info on his target – Curt Windsor – who is a big boss CEO type person on par with Donald Trump. He’s a first generation Beast whose Beastiness has only just emerged 3 years ago – coincidentally timed with the death of a number of his business rivals. He’s very paranoid about him and his daughter, Tori and has lots of guards and alarms – except when he goes onto the balcony every night at 1:00am for sneaky reasons. He confirms that there’s only one more mission after this – and ends the call as Cat arrives to talk to him. She drops the bombshell that she knows he’s her dad then walks out.

On the mission, it turns out it’s Tori who sneaks out onto the balcony at 1:00am for important angsty gazing over the city. Vincent sneaks in and confronts Curt – beastliness happens and Vincent is knocked across the floor. Curt then turns and grabs his daughter for letting Vincent in – Vincent attacks and he and Curt fight back and forth (with fists, no edged weapons not even claws and certainly no guns. Vincent is a pretty awful assassin) – until Tori tries to call for help. Vincent grabs her and flees the scene. Yes, he has just kidnapped the child of someone with Donald Trump-like wealth and influence.

Next day and Cat is having coffee with Reynolds; he didn’t want to complicate her life but checked up on her – which she (accurately) calls spying. He gives a brief history of his and her mother’s time together – they were young, they broke up before they knew she was pregnant, Thomas, Cat’s father, adopted Cat and he kept his distance as he was asked. He was going to get more involved when Cat turned 18 – except her mother died. She asks about Muirfield and he denies all relevant knowledge; then they both go their separate ways when they see the news of Curt’s kidnapped daughter and Vincent’s huge mission creep and Cat gets an emergency call from Gabe. Before they leave he makes a not-very-cryptic-comment about being saddled with a loser boyfriend

Vince calls Reynolds and disparages his crappy intel since Curt had better senses and was way stronger than he should have been as a 1st gen Beast. And he didn’t kidnap Tori, he saved her (she’s on the floor, tied up and gagged. His definition of “saved” is a dubious one). Reynolds tells Vincent to go into hiding before Curt hunts him down. At the police station, they basically catch up on all the stuff Vincent already knows.

Cat heads to Vincent’s boat and finds Tori’s earring – when Curt and a whole load of goons arrive, very dramatically. She jumps off the boat (managing not to splash) and hides in the water until they leave. She returns to the police station to excuse Vincent’s kidnapping ways to Tess and make Tess look like the bad guy for daring to suggest kidnapping teenaged girls is a bad idea. Gabe has a plan! Let’s try the whole “kill him and resuscitate him” to heal his beast (which makes no damn sense anyway) as they did with him on Curt – and to make Curt agree to this dodgy turn of events, they use his daughter as leverage.

Tess is not thrilled with this plan. I can’t imagine anyone with half a conscience would be.

In the woods Vincent tells Tori that he rescued her (being tied to a tree and told that she can scream all she wants are all part of the rescue) and that her dad is the real bad guy because she saw his beast (sure she saw Vincent’s beast as well, but he’s a good beast! Honest!) He tells her to thank him for saving her from a father who controls and cages her (and how does he know this? His intelligence didn’t include that and was deeply spotty). He proves all of this by demanding she trust him and cutting a tracking device out of her arm, but even Vincent admits that her father has a lot of enemies. And, hey, she has actually just been kidnapped so calling him paranoid for taking anti-kidnapping precautions seems… dubious, even if it is grossly controlling and ownershippy to implant a tracker in someone against their will or knowledge. Oh and he kept the tracker in so her father can find her so he can kill him. He’s the good beast!

Cat grabs Reynolds to insinuate herself into the kidnapping case – and both make up vague reasons why they view Curt as suspicious. They go up together with Reynolds pushing the father/daughter angle and Cat sticking to good cop/bad cop. He also tries to ask about her boyfriend before finally catching the hint that he’s way crossing boundaries.

Curt doesn’t want to talk to them – he thinks it’s a ploy to prove he made his money dishonestly and he prefers “private security.” Reynolds goes on the offensive pointing out he can’t opt out of the police being involved in a crime. While Reynolds and Curt argue, Cat sees the location Tori’s being held and hurries out – leaving Reynolds behind.

In the woods Vincent and Tori are camping and it seems Tori has completely swallowed everything Vincent says so he can insert a clumsy comparison about how leading a secret life is so lonely. Cat reaches them before anyone else – and is nearly killed by Vincent’s booby trap – saved only by his super speed.

Curt follows in their wake – but they’re long gone. They’ve gone to JT’s place (he’s out of town) so the whole ambush plan appears to be off. Vincent wants to set another trap and Cat isn’t pleased by his murdering ways – and points out that Curt came with a small army of private security. Tori starts blaming herself for not telling people about her father’s violent temper which turns into another story of how special Cat is to Vincent and keeps him from becoming Curt.

Vincent returns after the constant chorus of specialness has finally ended to ask what they’re going to do about Curt – Cat wants to save his life, having belatedly found a conscience somewhere. Of course this conscience involves forcing Curt to give up his beastiness by flatlining and using his daughter to force the issue so maybe “conscience” is too strong a word.

Reynolds talks to Gabe about Cat running off and Gabe kind of gives him a nicer version of “yeah, that’s Cat, get used to it.”

Cat visits Curt and delivers their ransom demand (though she still laughable calls the kidnapping a rescue) Curt have his heart stopped in a procedure that will probably kill him or never see his daughter again. He says no, unsurprisingly, not being suicidal so Cat ramps it up by threatening to expose him as a Beast.

Face with this ultimatum, he agrees – and Cat is disturbingly gleeful about the whole thing. I know everyone has been talking about this man as a “bad guy”, but we have yet to see one crime proved attached to his name AND he’s willing to effectively commit suicide for the sake of the daughter they “rescued”. The glee seems out of place.

He gets to say goodbye to his daughter- and then beasts out and snaps his restraints. He tosses Gabe aside and fights Vincent – who got an upgrade from somewhere because after a brief scuffle he rips out Curt’s heart. In front of Tori.

Next day and Cat goes to get coffee (don’t let a little heart ripping ruin your routine there Cat) and Reynolds is now stalking her and waiting for her. He wants to know where she ran off and praises her strong sense of right and wrong (ha!). He also wishes she’d trust him – but she points out that it’s going to take a little more than a cup of coffee for that. Reynolds tries some more subtle digs against Vincent

Tess, talking to Gabe, questions the whole ripping out a guy’s heart; though she terms it as a “step backwards.” Seriously, he’s not an alcoholic who fell off the wagon, he ripped out someone’s heart! One does not get a “50-days-without-heart-ripping” coin!

And Cat goes to Vincent because, of course someone having their heart ripped out means you totally worry about the ripper. Vincent isn’t sure why he killed Curt, he just reacted in a surge of energy and rage. She reassures him it’s all ok because he’s trying to go forward, the odd setback is to be expected.

I… have no words.

At home Tori looks in the mirror – and has Beast Eyes

Perhaps it’s just my having watched far too much Once Upon a Time and its commentary on families, but I was really pleased to hear Cat stress that Reynolds is her biological father, not her father and that there is a difference there.

So Curt went Beasty to kill his business rivals. Why? Follow it through – he’s a man of massive wealth and power but the only thing stopping him killing his rivals is lack of super strength and claws? He couldn’t buy a gun? Hire a hitman? A team of hitmen? All being a beast does is ensure he personally has to be on hand to kill all of these people.

Speaking of weapons – yes Vincent is strong and powerful so can kill humans easily. Beasts… not so much. So why does he go into an assassination mission completely unarmed – without even a knife?

Do I even have to talk about the whole “I’m not an evil kidnapper – except for the whole kidnapping thing. And your dad’s evil, honest!” shtick? And how ridiculously quickly Tori decided to agree with her kidnappers. This whole episode really ridicules the idea of Cat and Vincent being “good guys”.