Sunday, July 20, 2014

Hemlock Grove, Season 2, Episode 9: Tintypes

Peter isn’t dead (no surprises there) but he is captured and being tortured by the freaky cult of kiddy killing. They think someone sent them and they’re holy warriors doing wonderful things by piling up the bodies. They also want Nadia – who they call “the beast.” Peter won’t tell them so it’s more torture including special anti-werewolf torture using mercury. Even worse, he gets incomprehensible babble from the cult leader.

Roman has noticed Peter’s absence and is worried – so worried that he doesn’t want to take his last Upir treatment – though Johann warns him that refusing to go ahead will bring all the upirness back and probably more.

Olivia stomps into Johann’s office to demand he stop experimenting on her children – having found Prishelly last episode. Johann has no time or patience for her bullshit, points out she has zero maternal instinct, doesn’t care about her kids and generally treated them like shit so cut the false outrage. Johann is so calm but still capable of epic smackdowns when riled.

When she tells him she’s dying and asks for his help he points out the sciency reasons why his methods can’t help and why Dr. Zheleznova-Burdukovskaya is a dubious person with a dubious history and really not to be trusted. It also leaves him ragingly furious with the doctor and he stomps about demanding she come see him.

Still Olivia goes to the basement where Roman is preparing for his last treatment and
Dr. Zheleznova-Burdukovskaya is there to ask if she is really sure she doesn’t want to kill her son because “death solves all problems.” She also thinks Johann’s cancer suggestions are bullshit

Meanwhile Miranda has the creepy baby who ups the creepiness by spelling her own name – and she’s a little young for that. And Destiny contacts and pays an older Roma for some dubious means

Norman pays of Letitia and tells her to leave in between his angsting and then goes to Olivia’s house with a gun. Can you please eat him Olivia? Letitia isn’t a fool she’s followed him, she’s a trained detective after all and tries to talk him out of it – especially since she will testify against him for murder. She takes the gun and he leaves. Awww I wanted Olivia to eat him.

Letitia goes to Michael to try and get him to make Norman back off but he has been looking at the evidence she gathered – including finger prints and DNA she obtained through breaking and entering. Naughty Letitia! To the cells! Then Michael does go to Norman to tell him about Olivia killing Clementine – and he wants to help Norman make sure Olivia is really dead.

In the cult warehouse, Peter uses more off-moon shapeshifting to get free and kill his torturer – and make a run for it. He calls Destiny as he escapes, but can only get Roman’s voicemail.

At the Godfrey Institute, now that Prishelly is complete, Johann thinks it’s time for Shelly to die – even as she talks about twins. She wants to see her mother first and there’s a beautiful seen of the ubersweet and gentle Shelly telling her mother that she did the best she could and loved them as she could and apologising for being such a hard child to mother. Awwwwwww, Shelly. Olivia promises to be a better mother – Shelly doesn’t tell her of her plans to die.

Dr. Zheleznova-Burdukovskaya is plotting and tries to inject Roman with something “to help his pain” during the last treatment, but as his phone keeps ringing, and Roman reaches it to read his texts – Peter telling Roman that the cult knows about Nadia. Roman cuts the treatment, pulls out all the tubes and gets off the bed. Roman goes to the big vast of upir good – and plugs it directly into his IV. I’m sure that’s not good. Dr. Zheleznova-Burdukovskaya tries to apply the injection directly

Johann runs into Olivia who is on cloud 9 from her talk with Shelly, she’s happy to die of cancer living a normal life, living with and loving her children than continuing to be the sociopathic upir. Which is when they find the goo-vat, Dr. Zheleznova-Burdukovskaya’s discarded needle – and the doctor herself swirling around in the vat, most definitely dead.

Peter reaches Roman’s to be helped by Destiny and Miranda – and Destiny’s vargulf-curing contact shows up to take Peter away for treatment which may kill him (but Destiny considers this better than the vargulf taking over). Peter finds the timing rather vexing  and he throws Destiny away – violently. Horrified he realised what he did and apologises desperately. He realises the vargulf is affecting him and the man tells him if he doesn’t get help, the next time he shifts the wolf will own him.

At which point the butler gets pissed off at all the congregating in Roman’s home and starts ranting –only to be shot by the cultist hunters. Helpful of them to shoot the most expendable person first. Miranda and Destiny run to the baby safe room, while Peter seeks cover (mentor guy gets shot as second most expendable person in the room). Peter manages to stab one with an arrow but is then overwhelmed – but as someone tries to behead him Roman arrives. With a double handed battle axe, possibly a halberd. Well, people do keep odd things lying around. Of course, it’s unnecessary anyway because as a full Upir he is quite capable of throwing people across the room.

They split up and Peter gets shot with an arrow. Destiny comes out of the safe room and stabs one cultist in the groin – but the second hits her and knocks her down and starts strangling her. Peter starts shifting

Roman is happily munching on cultists now. But the safe room door is disabled and he can’t get in. The cultist leader breaks through one of the windows into the safe room..  wait, it has windows? It has windows?! The safe room has WINDOWS?! They weren’t even double glazed?! Does the whole concept of safe rooms escape these people?

Anyway, cultist leader gets in the safe room (through the freaking window that leads OUTSIDE) and Miranda can’t stop him. So Nadia stares at him and makes him bleed out through his eyeballs.

Told you the baby was creepy..

Peter breaks in and hugs his child, saying he loves her – and the baby doesn’t cry.

Of course the next problem is the vargulf – Destiny backs into the room with the vargulf growling and following her. Roman steps between the women and the wolf and tries to talk Peter down. That doesn’t work so Roman rips the wolf in half and pulls Peter out from its bloody carcass

Well, Hemlock Grove was always good with gore. We pan over all that gore in the aftermath, but they managed to clean Peter up at least, he’s now unconscious. He wakes up from a wolf growl in his dreams, but seems ok.

Meanwhile, Michael trains Norman in the fine art of upir killing and provides a body for him to practice on. His brutal practice is intercut rather well with Olivia singing a lullaby to Shelly.

That’s some powerful juxtaposition there. Now everything’s closing it’s much tighter and clearer and we’re getting some nice character moments a swell. Hey, it’s taken the better part of two seasons but these actors finally seem able to work these characters. And Roman has finally given up the “being an upir is so hard” which, I admit, he didn’t do awfully – but I never find that a full storyline compelling.