Sunday, August 3, 2014

The Witches of East End, Season Two, Episode Four: The Brothers Grimoire

Tommy and Wendy are on a picnic date and doing just fine until a rat comes running out of the bushes and crawls up Tommy's body and he starts freaking out.  Wendy grabs the rat, looks it in the eye as she squeezes it and then tosses it back into the bushes.  Tommy tries to calm himself with a beer but clearly the mood has most certainly been ruined.

Victor is still being held captive and because Joanna is expecting him home, Ivar uses Victor's phone to send a text explaining that he missed his flight, in order to by them more time. Isis enters the cave and transforms from the rat that crawled up Tommy into a woman.  Isis says that she found Wendy but because Wendy was so focused on Tommy, she didn't realise who she was holding when she picked up the rat.  Isis has a wound in her leg from when Wendy grabbed her, so Ivar licks her leg to heal it.

Dash goes to see Ingrid to see how she is holding up and Ingrid assures Dash that he didn't know what was happening to him and she knew.  Dash questions if Ingrid believes what happened was her fault and Ingrid confirms that she wonders if she had told Dash earlier, if all of this could have been avoided.  Dash expresses his gratitude for Ingrid's timely arrival and promises to be there if Ingrid needs anything.

Wendy has returned home and Joanna questions if the date went badly because Wendy is actually home.  Wendy explains that the date went well until a rat crashed their picnic and explains it away as an example of the Beauchamp women's horrible luck with men.  Joanna points out that her relationship with Victor is good. Wendy reminds Joanna that she was estranged from Victor for three centuries and didn't talk to him for two.  Joanna says that things between her and Victor have been good lately and that Victor will be home today. Wendy says that Tommy wants a do-over date but questions if she is up to and Joanna snarks about her having an eternity to find a mate.

Dash and Killian chat about how Killian met Ava and Dash clearly feels relief when he learns that Killian has no idea what really happened to him. They are interrupted by a knock on the door and it turns out to be their mother's executor. The executor drops off a box revealing that he was told to deliver it upon her death, only of the two brothers were together. When Dash opens the box, he finds a cryptex. When Killian grabs the other end of the cryptex, it immediately lights up, causing the brothers to decide that it's time they had a little conversation.

Back in the torture chamber, Ivar threatens Victor with death by a thousand cuts, which Isis apparently is a master in.  Isis brings up the portals and reveals that they know the one in East End was opened. Isis demands to know where the key is because she and Ivar want to return home. Victor tells them to go to hell, so Ivar suggests that if Victor does not break soon, they can try to break Wendy. Isis confirms that she is fine with that as long as they stay away from Joanna because Joanna scares her. Ivar intercepts a text from Joanna to Victor, saying that Frederick is looking forward to seeing him. Ivar and Isis realise that Frederick must have come through the portal and call it good news for them and bad new for Victor.

Dash opens the cryptex and finds a note in Latin saying follow the trail.  The brothers begin to wonder what it means and marvel at the fact that they are warlocks.  Killian reveals that Ava is a witch and that is why they found each other. Dash in turn reveals that the Beauchamps are witches and calls Freya a lying bitch, after admitting that she never shared that information with him. Killian may no longer be in love with Freya but having him sit there after she flew so far to find him and not respond to her being called a bitch is problematic.  This scene represents a lost opportunity in how to use a slur and still make sure that it is understood as wrong. Dash explains that Freya told him that their powers were dormant and that their mother's death must have brought them on.

Tommy and Wendy are playing darts and she uses her magic to make a better shot than him. When Tommy moves to withdraw the darts from the board, Wendy throws a dart hitting him in the shoulder.  Wendy uses magic to quickly heal him and calls him a baby. Tommy snarks about Wendy delivering a nice apology and points out that they are not having the best of luck on their dates. Wendy grabs her bag and suggests quitting while they are ahead but Tommy is determined to forge on, calling it the best time he has had in a long time.

Frederick brings some booze up to the bar and sees Ivar and Isis.  Frederick is instantly uncomfortable, as Isis invades Fredrick's personal space. When Freya does not recognize Isis and Ivar, they realise that she is a new Freya. Ivar explains that back in the old country, they all used to be friends and get into a lot of trouble together.  Frederick is quick to assure Freya that she is a good girl. Freya asks for details and Isis promises they will only tell the stories about Frederick.

Dash and Killian continue to talk about what follow the trail means. Dash suggests that it is a form of spell and Killian points out that the cryptex didn't open until they both touched it and therefore they should say the spell together. When they say the spell, the paper drifts across the room and lands on the floor and bursts into flames, as it leaves a symbol in the wood. When the brothers pry the floor boards up, they discover their family grimoire.  Of course, Dash wants to try a spell.

Back at The Bent Elbow, Isis and Ivar tell the story of how Frederick stole the sacred scrolls. Frederick explains that he did so so that the people would know that those in power bent the law to serve their own ends. Frederick explains when he was young and stupid, he was quite the daredevil. Ivar says that he and Isis took their rowdy behaviour too far and as a result were banished by Frederick and Freya's grandfather. Frederick tells them that they are lucky because they didn't have to face the king's wrath, when Isis says that they didn't have it easy on this side. Ivar points out that Isis had her big brother to look for her and the two kiss. Isis and Ivar tell Freya that they are twins like she and Frederic and Freya is quick to point out that she and Frederick are not like that.  Frederick asks to speak to Freya for a moment and explains that Isis and Ivar are bottom feeders whose clan are despised in Asgard. Freya points out that Ivar and Isis were Fredrick's friends and Frederick explains that he was acting out and that were happy to come along for the ride.  Freya makes it clear that they need to get rid of Ivar and Isis and Frederick promises to take care of it.

When Frederick returns to the bar, he finds only Ivar waiting for him.  When Frederick asks what the twins want, Ivar explains that they are owed because they took the fall for Frederick in Asgard. Frederick is quick to deny owing them anything and suggests that they leave before things get rough. Ivar however will not be scared away and pulls up an image of Victor on his phone. Freya is now at the back of the bar when Isis suddenly appears.  Isis strokes Freya's chin saying that Freya was always so pretty and that they should have some fun. When Freya declines the offer, Isis blows some sort of black smoke into her face.

The less then brilliant brothers, with no real experience, decide to cast a spell. Relying on Dash's Latin, they choose a spell which is supposed to make them invulnerable. How could anything go wrong right?

Tommy and Wendy are stuck on the side of the road having acquired a flat tire. Tommy snarks about hearing the ocean in her cell phone having dropped it.  It seems that their luck is not improving. Tommy gets the spare from the trunk and is almost hit by a truck, forcing Wendy to use her magic yet again. Wendy again says that the universe is trying to tell them something but Tommy says that they are fine and asks about the Latin Wendy speaks. Wendy lies and calls it a calming mantra. Tommy says that he should try one and then describes how he almost died as a medic in Iraq. Unfortunately, the man who ended up saving Tommy died later of internal bleeding in his arms. Tommy declares that existing isn't enough for him anymore. The two then share a kiss.

Back at The Bent Elbow, Ivar taunts Frederick about Victor being a screamer.  Ivar stops time and talks about how pliable mortals are. Frederick points out that this does not apply to him. Ivar warns that this isn't a negotiation and that he wants a key, so that he and his sister can return home. Frederick tells Ivar that Asgard is no longer the way he imagines it but Ivar is determined that Asgard must be better than living the way they currently are. Frederick says that he doesn't have the key and if he did, it would not be safe to open the door because there is no way to know what will come through. Ivar threatens to kill Victor again but Frederick says that from the look of the video, he is already to late to save his father.  Ivar points out that they still have Freya and gives Frederick two hours to hand over the portal key.

Dumb & Dumber are sitting together over a glass of wine and Dash says that he doesn't feel any different. Dash decides to test the spell by putting his arm in the flame and sure enough, he's just fine. When Killian decides to follow suit, he burns his arm badly. Killian then starts to cough and coughs up a tooth, along with blood. Dash then calls Ingrid for help and she warns them not to do anything until she gets there. Dash tells Killian not to worry but when Killian runs his hands through his hair, he losses a whole bunch of hair.

Frederick has returned home to grab a spell book and is caught by Joanna. Frederick is forced to admit that both Victor and Freya have been kidnapped to force the family to open the portal and hand over the key. Joanna asks Frederick why he didn't tell her and Frederick explains that since that is his mess, he wanted to clean it up all by himself.  Joanna tells Frederick that he should have informed her because she knows that tribe and that the twins are probably hiding under ground.  Joanna turns and leaves, as Frederick calls out that he has a plan and that he is meeting Ivar at the library. Joanna instructs Frederick to remain where he is but Frederick says that if Ivar doesn't think that he is bringing the key, Ivar and Isis will kill Freya and Victor. Joanna turns in anger and says that Ivar and Isis will try to kill Freya and Victor either way and that if Frederick stays at home, she will know he is safe. Of course, Frederick does not listen to Joanna.

Ingrid got pulled away by the tentacle creature and is now in the woods.  She asks if it is hungry and when it replies yes, Ingrid offers her body to feed it. The feeding still looks way too much like tentacle sex.

Freya and Victor are both in the dungeon now and Victor is not doing well at all. Isis uses the opportunity to force a kiss on Freya, telling her that she smells delicious. Freya calls Isis sick and Isis explains that this is why she gets along so well with Frederick and that she once saw Frederick cut out a man's eyeballs just for looking at his girl.

When Joanna enters the dungeon, she finds Isis violating Freya's personal space, so she uses her magic to free Freya and toss Isis across the room. Isis then says a spell and starts an hour glass going, before turning into a rat and escaping. Freya is about to stand in relief and is ordered by Joanna to stay where she is because if she stands, the spell will kill them all.

Ingrid comes back to consciousness in the park and finds a massive cut on her shoulder. When she checks her phone, she finds several messages from Dash and takes off.  Back at the house, Killian is in bed and not doing well. There are sores all over Killian's face and he is covered in sweat. Killian asks Dash if there is anything he can do because he is a doctor and Dash replies that this wasn't covered in med school. They decide to take Killian to the hospital and Killian struggles to get out of bed and in the process, Dash accidentally breaks Killian's rib.  Ingrid rushes in and heals Killian's rib and asks what the brothers were thinking.  Dash explains that he was trying to make them invulnerable. Dash gives Ingrid the grimoire and she explains that sometimes the simpler a spell sounds, the more complicated it really is. When Ingrid reads the spell, she learns that it takes the vitality of one person and transfers it to another. Killian points out that he is dying and Ingrid confirms this and promises to walk them through how to reverse it.

Frederick arrives at the library with the book and calls out to Ivar who says that Frederick brought what he owes them. Ivar asks for the key and Frederick claims that the key is a spell. Ivar tells Frederick to do the spell and reminds him that Freya's time is running out. Frederick asks if Ivar plans on leaving without Isis but is told that Isis will make it and that he is to focus on opening the portal.  Frederick does a spell to call on a snake and a terrified Ivar jumps on top of a bookshelf. Frederick throws the snake at Ivar and it enters Ivar's body and releases its venom. Ivar says that he just wanted to go home and Frederick tells him that he never should have come there and threatened his family. Frederick then breaks Ivar's neck.

Wendy and Tommy are getting together for a drink and Tommy says that he got lucky the day he met Wendy.  The two kiss and Tommy notes that Wendy tastes like peanuts. It seems that when Wendy was in the kitchen, she has a handful of peanuts to stave off her hunger.  Tommy has a peanut allergy and goes into shock and Wendy fumbles the epi pen.

Ingrid is guiding Dash and Killian through the spell.  Killian returns to himself and the two brothers hug.

Back at the dungeon, nothing Joanna has tried to free Freya and Victor has worked and in fact, she has only made the hour glass clock move faster. In desperation, Freya tells her mother to grab Victor and leave because she will be reborn.  Victor comes back to consciousness and suggests that he switch places with Freya because he is not going to make it anyway.  Joanna says no, convinced that she can save Victor if she can get him out of there.  Victor tells Joanna that it's too late for that and points out that Freya has never lived this long.  Victor yells for Joanna to do it now and finally, she consents and Victor and Freya change places.  Victor and Freya tell each other that they love each other and Freya leaves. Joanna tells Victor that she loves him and that she doesn't want to leave him but Victor tells Joanna that the sand is almost gone and so she rushes out. The two women just make it out of the dungeon, when the sand goes off caving in the dungeon.

Wendy once again suggests that she and Tommy heed the universe's warning on their budding relationship. Tommy makes it clear that Wendy is not going to get rid of him because he believes that nights like this remind a person of what it is to be alive.  Tommy taunts the universe to bring it on and kisses Wendy on the check promising to call her tomorrow.

Tweddle Dee and Tweedle Dum decide to give magic a rest for a while. Killian brings up that Dash almost killed him and when Dash apologizes, Killians says that its okay, because he knows Dash would never do anything like that on purpose.  Dash snarks about Killian probably haunting his ass. Dash suggests that this was their mother's way of getting them both together.  Ingrid interrupts to tell the brothers that she is leaving but when she hugs Killian, Dash notices the wound on her shoulder and asks to take a look. When Killian leaves, Ingrid shows the cut on her shoulder and admits that she does not know what happened because she is losing pieces of time.  Ingrid asks for help and Dash agrees to help her.

Frederick returns home to find Joanna wrapped in a blanket in front of the fire. When he asks for Freya, he learns that Freya doesn't want to see him and is instead at The Bent Elbow and that his father is dead.  Joanna tells Frederick that he should have told her sooner.  Frederick says that he is sorry and that this was his mess. Joanna tells Frederick that she cannot talk to him right now and asks him to leave.

Killian walks into The Bent Elbow and Freya is drinking at the bar. Killian approaches saying he needs to talk to Freya but before he can finish, Freya says that her father died. The two hug.

A man is walking through town when he get grabbed by the tentacle creature and murdered.

This was yet another episode with far too much going on.  What is happening between Tommy and Wendy is absolutely irrelevant to the larger narrative.  Not every character has to have their own storyline and furthermore, not every overblown storyline needs to be serviced each and every single episode. If anything every time Wendy and Tommy made an appearance, they interrupted to the flow of the story.

This episode we had our first official GLBT character and unsurprisingly it was trope laden. It has been suggested that Hudson is a gay character but they have not actually made that cannon.  In this episode we got introduced to the predatory bisexual.  Though this trope usually applies to lesbians it`s not accidental that this is who Isis became when she interacted with Freya.  It was absolutely disturbing largely in part because The Witches of East End linked Isis's sexuality with her evil nature. We were meant from the very beginning to see Isis as sexually corrupt. She did after all sleep with her brother and her assault on Freya was meant to seal the deal.  I think I liked it better when The Witches of East End kept their plausible deniability.

Alright, we know that in each previous incarnation Ingrid ended up with an evil Warlock. Clearly history is repeating itself with Dash.  They have made her nothing but an evil seeking vagina at this point. This is especially true because Ingrid is always and forever juxtaposed to Freya who always picks the right man to make sure she remains "the good girl" she is known to be.

I don't know about you, but I don't think they worked hard enough to make Victor's death meaningful. I know that we were supposed to feel Joanna's pain but having Wendy point out how long Joanna and Victor were estranged didn't exactly help that at all. If anything Victor's death will serve as a catalyst for Fredrick's man pain in the future. Since I care little about either character, I doubt it will do anything for the show itself.