Saturday, November 1, 2014

The Vampire Diaries, Season 6, Episode 5: The World Has Turned and Left Me Here

Opening with Stefan, in bed, in a vest. Y’know, if he’s going to be boring and mopey he could at least be shirtless, boring and mopey. I’m just saying.

Stefan is learning that handing over a vampire to a vampire hunter to torture for information is a really really really bad idea. Most people probably would have realised this a bit sooner, but no-one on Vampire Diaries is particularly well known for their reasoning skills. Surprisingly Enzo is being quite close lipped. But he did reveal there are vampires in Savannah (which is where Stefan is hiding)

He’s also babysitting new vamp Ivy who has a bad case of melodrama and ate Stefan’s boss. Oh, Ivy, call us when you’ve hit your 10th kill, then someone may care (just kidding. You could munch on an entire school bus and no-one would care). She’s really really hungry and Stefan is really not all that supportive. She’s outraged and horrified about being a killer and doomed to kill again (no, really, Ivy no-one on this show cares about murder). Stefan decides to help her deal with this by breaking her neck and looking really put out.

To Alaric’s class where they talk about a party they’re having at a corn maze (with a theme of some civil war soldier who killed his brother for sleeping with his wife which led to a white clad blood stained ghost lady. Just once I want a ghost story about a woman in yellow) – their college is just like their school! No classes and endless parties! During which we get Liv and Tyler not!flirting (she said no, Tyler, stop) and Elena asking Alaric to come to the party because Reasons. She also invites pointless new love interest Liam because Elena does this every time there’s a party. There are militaries that are less gung ho about recruitment than Elena when there’s a party to attend.

Back to Ivy and Stefan -  while she’s dead he rams her body in a trunk and delivers her to Caroline. Caroline and Stefan argue about whose mess Ivy is while she’s right there in the room (because they’re terrible people). Stefan also whines about him Ivy needs to learn control because Trip is a super vampire hunter (hey, maybe you could have let Enzo kill him? Maybe? Aaaargh these people!)

For more fun, Ivy decides that all these terrible revelations about being a vampire take second place to poking Caroline’s denial about clearly having a thing for Stefan and she really really wants to go to the party. She’s gone from “I killed someone! I’m a killer!” to “cool, party!” in like 3 hours. She quickly caught up with the Vampire Diaries spirit of things. And she breaks Caroline’s neck while she’s distracted so she can go out. This leads to Caroline calling Stefan and making snarky comments about the upcoming murders.

Oh party time – and Elena has also invited the Dr. Jo Laughlin she technically volunteers for (seriously, it’s like a compulsion with her. There’s a party, she invites the whole state. And why is she inviting people anyway, it’s not like she organised it) to try and set her up with Alaric. Because setting up two of your teachers isn’t weird

Friday, October 31, 2014

The 100, Season Two, Episode Two: Inclement Weather

The new camp Jaha is made up of the remains of the arc.  Cain heads to see Bellamy, who he has incarcerated until he perceives that Bellamy is no longer a threat to others. Cain wants information on the grounders, such as their numbers and what made them attack The 100.  Bellamy is interested in saving The 100, who have been captured but Cain is adamant that Bellamy is not trained and reminds Bellamy that they are his people as well.  They are interrupted when Murphy is brought in and Cain orders them to be Bellamy and Murphy to be tied up next to each other.

Outside, the guards watching the Camp Jaha, fire off a round when they think they see something.  Cain is quick to take away the weapon from one of the arc survivors demanding that weapons only be given to guards, ordering that unauthorized use of weapons be punishable as a felony. Well, it seems that crash landing on earth has done nothing to reduce Cain's totalitarian view of life. Abby demands that Marcus search the woods for the kids and the guards move out.

Back at Mount Weather, Miller has been released into gen pop (yes, I am intentionally using prison terms), where he snarks about Clarke fitting right in.  Maya and Jasper continue to make eyes at each other as a distrustful Clarke watches.  An alarm goes off and Maya rushes off, asking Jasper to save her seat. Clark intercepts Maya and learns that the alarm means that the search team is back and someone needs medical attention.  Clarke moves to follow, saying that if their people (read: The 100) are hurt, they have a right to know and even though Jasper tries to stop Clarke, she heads toward quarantine.

Clark arrives at quarantine to hear that the group was attacked and once again, Clarke grabs a pass and forces her way into the treatment area.  Once again Jasper tries to stop Clarke but after finding a bullet wound on one of Mount Weather people, Clarke declares that they are being lied to because Grounders don't use guns. Clarke says that it means their people are alive.  The medical staff arrives, bringing with them one of the Mount Weather soldiers who is covered in lesions and burns from being exposed to radiation. 

Back on the Arc, Jaha searches for the crying baby.  The cries continue to echo through the arc, until he finally finds the baby locked away in a dresser.  I would bet money that this baby is now going to be Jaha's raison d'être .

Abby heads to see Raven to find Finn watching over her.  Abby explains that the bullet is shifting and that this is why Raven is in pain.  Abby adds that because the bullet is putting pressing on Raven's spine, and if they leave it in, Raven will live but the surgery to remove it could kill her. It is further complicated by the fact that Abby has no equipment and no anesthesia.  Raven is determined to have the surgery, pointing out that at zero gravity, she didn't need her legs but on earth, they are a necessity.

Octavia awakes to find herself facing a Grounder. The Grounder tries to offer Octavia a liquid but she resists, demanding to know where Lincoln is.  Finally, the grounder demands that Octavia drink the liquid or die.

Fallen Eyes (Salt Lake City After Dark #4) by J.K. Walker

Jazz is overwhelmed with the number of jobs and duties she now has to hold together and is really looking forward to a simple break with Logan – let everyone else handle the chaos for a while.

But people are dying again, there’s a deeply terrifyingly personal enemy that she thought had long since been defeated lurking around. The werewolf pack is chafing under the leadership of a wereleopard. The police and the press both are watching her after the dramatic revelation on television. There’s far too much work for a much deserved holiday

And then one of her best friends is possessed and they find an ancient and truly terrifying evil has moved to town…

At the end of the last book I said there was too much packed into the space, too many plot lines left untouched and in need of development (especially since they were so awesome and I was very interested in learning what happened next). This book did an excellent job of unpacking a lot of that narrative, expanding it and going into the full consequences of several of the major elements that were only briefly covered before.

One of the main ones was Jazz becoming the new Alpha of the werewolf pack – it seemed like a huge shift and one that happened far too easily given her newness as a shapeshifter and the fact she wasn’t a werewolf. Naturally there are consequences to that and that takes up a hefty chunk of the book as she has to deal with the fallout from that.

Then there’s the whole revelation of the supernatural world to humanity at large – and Jazz being the centre of that and the difficulties and fall out that cases; from both the fearful and the curious.

Less deep but still in need of addressing was how, in the last book, she basically called out the alpha of the werecats and challenged his authority. Again, it was an action that had consequences that had to be followed up, even to a small degree. Then there was Logan becoming a vampire and even Jazz’s actual friendship with Victoria.

I even like how Jazz is having some ongoing health issues from previous injuries. Often Urban Fantasy characters can be mangled beyond all measure but next book, except (maybe) some easily hidden and non-mobility related scars, are completely fine.

I haven’t mentioned the main plot much because I think it’s secondary to the themes that were explored while the plot continued – and the development of Jazz and her friends. Not only did it give us time to look at all these issues that were left hanging but it was also a chance to re-analyse Jazz and the way she lives.

Jazz handles everything in town. Everything – and it’s too much. I’ve said before that the books really present how frazzled  Jazz is having to handle everything. In addition she has a really great relationship with her frineds – she respects them, she loves them, she has a lot of friends and they’re capable and have skills and powers of their own. This is a nice break from a lot of Urban fantasy protagonists who either a) have friends who only exist to serve them or b) have friends who exist only to be imperilled on a semi-regular basis. It’s because of this that Jazz can be confronted with not having to defend her friends all the time, that she doesn’t have to handle everything, her friends can help or handle their own problems. She isn’t alone and doesn’t have to play lone ranger. It also nicely challenges the whole meme of “I can’t stand to see my friends in danger” – well, all those friends have to see you in danger on a semi-regular basis so deal with it.

American Horror Story, Season 4, Episode 4: Edward Moredrake Part 2

Edward Mordrake continues to interview the show members to find his corrupted sinful “freak” to add to his party – interviewing Paul and Suzi (he passes over Pepper and her fellow because they’re too innocent and full of joy to know shame), learning their history of them being cast out and shunned. Paul becoming tattooed to try and scare the people who rejected him – but not his face, because he’s handsome and everyone would see he was handsome if they didn’t see his short arms. And Suzi once, in desperate rage and jealousy, stabbed a man in the leg which killed him.

He goes on to see Elsa who is sure he is there to develop her talent and make her a star, while she lavishes contempt on the other members of the troupe – and Edwards calls her on it most gloriously. When his ghostly troupe grabs her, she insists she’s “not one of them” and they take away her prosthetics, revealing her legs are missing below the knee. Edward throws in more scorn

So it’s time for Elsa’s story, in 1932 Berlin with lots and lots of “sexual deviancy”. She was a dominatrix – a reluctant one, she talks about “trading away her humanity.” At one trick she was drugged, filmed – and they cut her legs off with a chainsaw and then left her to die. A soldier who had fallen in love with her and was stalking her saved her (something Elsa never forgave). The film was distributed.

Edward’s second face declares that she is the one – and Elsa begs him to take her, that she has nothing left to live for. He is ready to stab her – when he hears music

Outside of town, Jimmy is driving Esmeralda back to the show when his bike cuts out – he tells her they need to make their way back through the woods because they can’t be seen during the curfew. She is duly suspicious and dubious about walking through the woods, at night, with a man she doesn’t know – and doesn’t take “you’re not my type” as much of a reassurance.

At Twisty’s little prison, the young woman reassures the new captive and is still determined to escape. When Twisty comes back, she manages to make a run for it. She runs to the road before Twisty tackles her – Esmeralda and Jimmy hear her screaming and hide. They watch as Twisty carries her away and Jimmy follows to see if he can help. He tries to make Esmeralda stay behind but she adamantly refuses. Jimmy realises the clown is the serial killer – and Dandy appears behind them, knocking them both out.

When they wake up, Dandy and Twisty perform for their captive audience – starting to cut the captured woman (does she have a name?) in half with a saw; Jimmy gets free and punches Dandy, saving her. They look at Twisty to see if he will attack – and he applauds them. Ooookay. Jimmy tells everyone to run. Everyone does – but Twisty captures Jimmy.

Dandy chases the others – Esmeralda sends the three captives to the road while she lures Dandy away. Dandy has one of his tantrums.

It was Twisty’s music Edward heard and he appears as the clown holds a pair of shears over Jimmy’s body. Edwards demands Twisty remove his mask (despite only his eyes showing, Twisty looks like a scolded school boy. It’s very very creepy). He does, revealing his disfigured mouth – and Twisty tells his story.

The Women of Resurrection

Unlike many shows on television, Resurrection actually has a pretty large selection of female characters.  Before you clap your hands for inclusion though, it’s worth looking at exactly what kind of characters we have been given. Though we have gotten to know all of the women in the season and a half that Resurrection has been on the air, they have never been allowed to move beyond very specific tropes: self sacrificing, victim, slut and or course control freak. They are essentially cardboard cut outs rather than full fleshed out characters like the men. Men are allowed to go on an emotional journey whereas the women are expected to perform their gender in a very specific manner and shamed if they dare step outside of it momentarily.

The most glaring example of this is Barbara. Barbara drowned on the same day that Jacob did. The difference is that Jacob slipped trying to save Barbara’s life and Barbara was down at the river because she was having an affair with Sam. From the very beginning, it’s clear that though Fred has mourned the loss of Barbara these past thirty years, he was anything but a good husband to her. Barbara was lonely and out of her depth and Fred was controlling and cruel.

Almost from the moment of Barbara’s return, she has been slut shamed. How dare she cheat on Fred! No one bothered to realise that marriage is difficult in the best of circumstances and that outside of the people involved, no one really knows what happens inside a marriage. It quickly became far easier for Maggie, Lucille, Margaret and even Fred himself to shame Barbara for her decisions, while neglecting to examine the various ways in which Fred let Barbara down.

During the now infamous dinner from hell, Lucille not only actively blames Barbara for Jacob’s death but unequivocally states that Jacob is dead because Barbara wanted to “screw Sam” and had Barbara stopped the affair when she was advised to do so, Jacob would have lived. Margaret has not minced words when it comes to her descriptions of Barbara either. When Margaret sees Barbara dressed in shorts and a pullover, Barbara actually describes this outfit as “next to nothing”, to emphasise to Maggie that her mother is a no good whore. For her part, Maggie blames Barbara for her not having the perfect family reunion because Barbara chose to return to Sam, who was neither neglectful or emotionally abusive like Fred.

Barbara is shamed for making her own sexual choices and made to look like the Scarlet Woman. I am in fact shocked that they didn’t demand she walk around with the letter A sewn to her clothing, while she is followed by a child banging a drum so that the passerbies know they are in the presence of a slut. In the end not only is Barbara attacked everywhere she goes, she is convinced to give up her life by Margaret.  Margaret cites Barbara's poor decisions as the primary reason that Barbara should give up on life. Instead of fighting, Barbara, who by that point is so full of shame, simply gives in and disappears.  

What crime did Barbara commit that she didn’t deserve to live? Why the evil of adultery of course and having the temerity to reduce Margaret’s control on Fred. Margaret made it absolutely clear that had always had a tumultuous relationship with Fred but when Barbara arrived on the scene she lost all semblance of control over her son. As much as Margaret didn’t want to see Fred get hurt again, Barbara’s biggest crime was the potential influence she could have had over Fred again. It’s almost incestuous the way that Barbara seeks control of who her son is dating. Barbara was Margaret’s competition and Margaret simply could not handle that.

Another family in conflict due to the Returned is the Hale family. Pastor Tom is caught in a difficult situation between his wife, Janine and his Returned pregnant ex-girlfriend Rachel. We see a lot of Tom’s conflict over this, we see his struggle with both them and with his church and even with his childhood friend Jacob. Tom is in a difficult situation and we see a lot of that developed and on screen

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sleepy Hollow: Season Two, Episode Six: And the Abyss Gazes Back

This episode opens with Abby trying to teach Crane yoga.  Abby encourages Crane to do this for Katrina because everyone woman likes her man to stay in great shape. This however is not enough enticement for Crane, who quickly drops the pose, when Abby brings up the benefits to his "double jug".  Abby tries again calling it training for their war against Moloch because Crane has been anxious since he last saw Katrina.  It seems however that Crane is back to justifying Katrina's lies to himself.  Abby encourages Crane to just admit that he feels pissed off and finally Crane admits that it's hard in good conscious to keep having faith in Katrina.  Abby questions what will make Crane feel better and he gets a big smile on his face.

The two head to the bar to get their drink on.  They witness a fight and Abby, being a cop, has to break it up.  One of the fighters is Joe Corbin, that's right, Jack Corbin's son.  Abby follows Joe outside after he is tossed out by the bartender, where she welcomes him home.  Joe questions what happened to Quantico because Abby is still here.  Abby jokes about being here to keep Joe in line and then brings up his honourable discharge and what happened with Joe's platoon.  Joe is quick to turn and tell Abby that what happened to his platoon and what happened to him are none of her business. Joe calls Abby a charity case that Jack took pity on and adds that it got his father killed.  Abby tries to say that there is a lot about that night that Joe doesn't know, so Joe asks for an explanation.  Abby flashes back to the night that Jack died and when she cannot find the words to talk to Joe, he simply tells Abby to stay away from him.

Another demon is the woods watching drug dealing going on.

Abby and Crane drive back and Abby explains about how she used to babysit Joe and that their relationship used to be good.  Crane advises that Joe will find his way because "once a hero, always a hero." Over the radio, Abby hears a call regarding Corbin and decides to take the call.  Crane finds the breathalyzer and blows into, exclaiming that he has won, when all the lights flash. Abby pulls up to the area where drugs were being dealt earlier and when Crane hops out of the car, he finds a demon footprint.  They rush around and find the men who were gathered there dead.  Joe is leaning against a tree and he is mumbling that his father knew and that "it" is going to kill them all.

The next day, Abby goes to see Joe in the hospital and brings up his mention of Jack the night before and the fact that he was the sole survivor of his platoon. Joe snarks that Jack never told him anything because Jack was too busy with Abby. It seems that Joe still carries a lot of resentment about what happened and so Joe simply tells Abby that if he remembers anything from the night before, he will let her know.

Still in the mental institution, Frank confronts Henry about stealing his soul. Henry makes it clear that when Henry dies, that he will own him but adds that if Frank takes a life, he can regain his soul.  Frank is duly appalled about the idea of taking an innocent human life.  Henry says that it doesn't have to be innocent and brings up an old client of his who drove drunk and killed a little girl.  That's right, Henry wants Frank to kill the man who paralyzed his daughter. Henry adds, "that when one gazes long enough into the abyss, the abyss gazes back," before leaving.

Supernatural, Season 10, Episode 4: Paper Moon

Lots of werewolf flashbacks so no surprise when an unseen woman going into a biker bar then grows claws, slices a man’s neck and (presumably) eats his heart (something werewolves do on Supernatural)

Sam and Dean are very very carefully relaxing – with Sam very much expecting Dean to fall apart into little pieces given the givens (the tension is excellently presented). Dean, of course, is in major suppression mode, claiming to be fine – and wanting to go out hunting since they’ve seen reports of multiple “animal attacks”

So on to the case and it’s an excuse to put them in an entirely different uniform – Game Wardens. They confirm the latest victim left the bar with a woman and that hearts were removed. There was also a less-than-reliable witness who decides the woman was a ghost because he was sure she’d also been eaten by the beast then he saw her later.

He’s put 1 and 1 together and sort of reached 2. Kind of. And I guess “oh you silly fool, it was clearly a werewolf” would be a kind of unfair reaction.

Off to a spooky barn where they find dead birds, claw marks and inside – Kate, the werewolf they let go. They chain her up and she claims the hunger is too strong (nah, it’s far too early in the episode, she’s covering for someone). She expects them to kill her and Dean pulls his gun but Sam would rather her sit out the whole killing thing given the very recent Mark of Cain-ness. While they’re debating it, the policeman reports another “animal attack”. Told you.

While they debate whether Kate is innocent or capable of teleporting, she escapes. No-one on this show ever stays tied up. Ever.

So time to track her down and Dean to get  little huffy about Sam not thinking he’s ready to kill and totally-not-spitefully bringing up the man Sam basically sacrificed to try and find Dean. Passive aggressive sniping all round!

They reach the hotel room and follow a woman they think is Kate – she tries to play innocent, before showing her fangs and snarling. She attacks – and Kate pulls her off them, but also stops Dean shooting her. The werewolf is Kate’s sister. They question Kate, Dean all snarly, Sam trying to be understanding – she turned her sister into a werewolf.

Kate describes her story – how she doesn’t kill people or eat hearts, how she controls the wolf and even carries a silver knife to kill herself if she loses it. In a huge, clumsy and really unnatural exposition (lots and lots of clichés. It’s like someone reading aloud a protagonist’s info dump in a book) she explains who she turned Tasha, her sister, into a werewolf to save her life when she had a bad car accident. She then lost control and Kate pleas for a chance to help her sister learn how to become a werewolf since she’s family and Kate is why she is a werewolf in the first place.

This Week in Book Covers 20th October - 24th October

This week we have a lot of the same issues repeating themselves - 3 books, 3 authors I’ve read before (and 2 series) and the same cover issues are continuing.

Allegiant (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth

This reminds me of the other covers in the series and it definitely gets points for consistency. I like the overarching theme that has continued through the series. Still, while I think the cover is beautiful and interesting and intriguing, I can’t say I’m a huge fan of covers that are this abstract. To understand the cover, you have to have read the book which feels a little backwards, though it works for a third book in the series (and these books don’t even really try to be stand alone). But, then, it’s probably a testament to the popularity of the series - certain series and authors don’t need covers to describe their work

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Resurrection, Season Two, Episode Five: Will

Bellamy jogs along until he runs into Frank.  Frank asks about Maggie and if she has any idea what they are dealing with.  Bellamy tells Frank (because apparently, Frank cannot pick up the phone and calls his own daughter) that Maggie believes the Returned could be dealing with a new strain of the flu, or some kind of viral pneumonia because so far six Returned have become ill. Bellamy offers to tell Maggie that Frank stopped by and Frank interjects to say that he is really here to see Bellamy and not Maggie, as Frank pulls the bone he found under the Langston factory out of his pocket.  I know that bone is supposed to be a human bone but to me it looks like a damn chicken bone.  The prop department really dropped the ball there. Fred explains that a fire in 1935 killed the 12 men and that the family tried to make it look like a truck accident but two of the men Returned.  Bellamy points out that they were murdered three times over and Fred wonders who killed them.  Bellamy suggests asking Margaret and Fred explains that he did but Margaret does not want to share any information. Bellamy questions why Fred is sharing information and Fred explains that the truth is a slippery thing these days and warns that if Bellamy digs this up, the only people who will get hurt are the one's Bellamy cares about - the Langston's, or more specifically Maggie.

Barbara is sitting in the bar, when Elaine walks over and introduces herself as Maggie's friend.  Elaine sits and says that Maggie is not great with feelings but she has always dreamed of having her mother back. Barbara smiles saying that none of this is Maggie's fault and that after everything she has done, she does not deserve anything more. Really? They are going to go ahead and turn Barbara into the Scarlett Woman? How nice and puritanical.  Elaine advises that people all make mistakes and that the people we love always forgive us. Umm, yeah I am go to need Resurrection to explain exactly why Barbara needs so much forgiveness. Elaine then notes that the bar is empty and offers to sit with Barbara for awhile. Barbara says that would be nice and Elaine leaves saying that she has to take care of one thing first.  Elaine moves off to the side and makes a phone call.

Maggie goes to see the always unpleasant Mikey and his younger brother deputy Carl. Maggie explains that there is no sign of a concussion from Mikey's car accident and that his fever has broken. Mikey snarks about jumping for joy and asks Maggie what is wrong with him. Carl asks Mikey to go easy and Maggie explains that they are not sure what they are dealing with.  Maggie starts writing and explains that Mikey is being started with anti-virals and is being sent home with Carl.  What did Carl ever do to get stuck with that SOB? Mikey being Mikey, demands to see a real doctor - a man.  Maggie hands Carl the prescription and snarks about Mikey already starting to feel better before leaving the room.  Carl is quick to follow Maggie to ask about Arthur being sick and disappearing but Maggie says that she is not sure if this was because of the virus and asks Carl to be vigilant.  Clearly, Carl is already thinking about a permanent way to get rid of Mikey, as in the other room, Mikey storms about saying that he has to get out of there because he is being treated by witchdoctors. Yeah, I know it's wrong, but I am team Carl on this one.

Bellamy brings Maggie a coffee and asks how things are going.  Maggie explains that there have been no new cases and thus far, they have been able to keep the symptoms under control. Maggie questions whether or not Bellamy has talked to his contact with the government, but Bellamy asserts that they are better off without their help.  The conversation is interrupted when Maggie is passed a message.

The bar is now in full swing when Maggie walks in to find Elaine chatting with  Barbara.  Barbara greets her with a great hug, calling Elaine the best.  When a clearly uncomfortable Maggie suggests getting out of there, Barbara declares it girls night and heads off to the bar to procure a drink for Maggie.  Elaine explains that this was not her idea, as Maggie questions how long Barbara has been there. Elaine explains that Sam and Elaine had a fling back then, but now, Sam is an old man.  Maggie is not sympathetic to Barbara's situation and Elaine reminds Maggie that Barbara is a kid and younger than they are. Maggie points out that Barbara is her mother and questions why Elaine is getting involved. Elaine replies that she is trying to help and suggests that Barbara be given a chance.  Barbara arrives at the table with  a tray of shots.

Karma (Karma #1) by Donna Augustine

Camilla was a lawyer before she died.

Now, after signing a piece of paper without properly reading it (yes, she knows – but in her defence she was highly traumatised), she is Karma. A personification of the Universe’s sense of justice and comeuppance. And she’s not happy about it, she didn’t want this and she’s hoping that maybe she’ll be able to duck out of it once her trial period is up

In the meantime, she’d like to find her killer – and bring all kinds of Karmic punishment down on him.

Camilla is now Karma, her job is to make sure people get what’s coming to them (which always seems to be bad – at least in the few occasions we saw her do her job before she got sidetracked). She works for an agency full of beings that handle these nitty gritty supernatural forces – including the biggies like fate and luck but even more mundane and slightly weird and esoteric elements. Like one of her colleagues sends out black cat omens, we have 3 kids running around ready to jinx people if they don’t knock on wood. Luck is teamed with Murphy who imposes his infamous law.

Camilla is a reluctant Karma but does draw out several interesting conflicts from it – she has, after all, just died and the grief she shows for her loved ones she has left behind really shows. I really like how well written her clinging to her old life is, her affections, the evolution of her grief and how that relates to the true nature of her relationship as the revelations grow.

Camilla also has some good conflict as Karma – there’s the obvious one, of course, in bringing about wrongdoer’s comeuppance she realises she has to hurt people – even kill them. She is, in effect, the Universe’s assassin. But there’s even the nature of avenging wrongs when perhaps they should be stopping them

While the world is interesting and the concept pretty unique, I do feel the world building is still very unfinished. We have a lot of talk about “the universe” but no real definition of what that is – but I can live with an unknowable force guiding the actions even if those actions make no sense whatsoever. What does bother me more is not really understanding the core of the plot. There’s these shadowy people guided by something else entirely who are doing nefarious things against the firm – and I don’t even have a shred of explanation as to their actual motivations or even what they are or how they can exist. And then there’s another group of secretive supernatural beings who may have been ex-employee’s of the universe’s group and they’re opposing shadowy group 1 – and I don’t know their motivations, how they exist, what they can do… The problem is most of the plot, especially towards the end of the book, relates to how Camilla interacts with these two groups.

I also think, as the first book in a series, it rather missed the opportunity to build on the context and establish both the agency and the characters inside it – we needed to see more of Camilla being Karma, more of Luck and Murphy and the rest doing their thing.

I also have a minor quibble on tone – and it is minor. I can’t decide if this book wants to be fun and a little whacky (and some of Camilla’s fellow co-workers certainly point towards the whacky) or whether it wasn’t to be serious and introspective (because the whackiness doesn’t really last and we spend a lot of time on Camilla’s reasonable grief, loss and her life). Still, the humour is pretty hilarious and it’d be a huge loss if this wasn’t in the book

Forever, Season 1, Episode 7: New York Kids

We open with a big fancy award ceremony honouring a Dr. Tyler Forrester who seems surprisingly unhappy about the big speech being made by a close friend of his about what an amazing guy he is.

And the cops – including Henry, Hanson and Jo - find Tyler’s body later, in a flat in Harlem (way below what he could afford since his father is a billionaire) seeming to have been bludgeoned by his own little award statue. Henry seems very interested in the man’s ring. Jo snarks Henry’s rather pretentious language (more snark is needed!) and notices that the lock has been tampered with from the inside – it’s not a break in (and Jo got to notice something rather than following Henry around and being wowed!)

For more mystery, when they get the body on the slab they find he has Roman numerals tattooed on his chest and Jo’s research shows he was pretty much a loner devoted entirely to his work. When they interview his father (and, yes, Henry is in the interview, of course he is) they find that Tyler had pushed him and his ex-wife away – and that while Tyler’s dad is rolling in money, Tyler refused to accept any of it and any money he earned he tended to give away.

Time for an Abraham cameo (who just accepted a client’s story of their deceased father’s precious antiques despite recognising them as knock offs) when Henry arrives to talk sadly about how Tyler’s dedication to medicine caused him to neglect his family – which Abe runs with since he remembers his own medical parents (Henry and Abigail) being similarly obsessed and brings up a baseball game he missed when he was 10 because of it (I have the feeling this is an oft repeated complaint).

At the funeral, everyone is wearing the same ring – class rings for an extremely exclusive school (and Jo, from a very poor neighbourhood, snarks heavily). They pick out one man, Paul, who Henry declares is on cocaine (because of Henry powers), we meet Cassandra, a lawyer who snarls at them and Carter who was the man making the nice speech about Tyler at the award ceremony. He confirms that Tyler was pretty much out of touch with everyone. Henry sees a date on a photograph (depicting Tyler and the other three) – 10th June 2005 and decides to ask Carter about it – he denies the date being special but looks awfully shifty while doing so. The date is the same date as Tyler’s tattoo – if viewed in a mirror. (Brief moment where it’s presented as ridiculous that Jo would have a mirror to help her apply make up – are we pretending she doesn’t wear make up? Really?)

Talking to Tyler’s mother, they learn that was the day Tyler and his friends graduated, went away from the summer – only Tyler returned early and a changed man. She describes him as sad and how he stopped accepting money from them

Back in the lab, Lucas (in between trying to crack Henry’s past) reveals the murder weapon was covered in diesel fuel used in boats and a teeny tiny human hair on the body.

In the police station, Joanne Reece (I’m going to keep calling her Reece since she and Jo have the same first name) talks to Jo about killing someone last episode; she shares her own experiences about how killing someone, even if you have to, can affect you.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Originals, Season Two, Episode Four: Live and Let Die

Marcel is throwing a party and he approaches Josh, who is checking a dating profile for his messages.  Its seems that Josh has been exchanging messages with a guy for a week but has left out the fact that he is a vampire. Suddenly, a bloodied body is thrown through the window and it is followed by Oliver, Aiden and a pack of werewolves.  Gia quickly asks what's wrong because they didn't do anything, and Marcel brings up the deal they had about vampires staying out of the quarter.  Aiden is quick to make it clear that this is not good enough anymore. Marcel asks who is really changing the rules and comments that he never thought he would see the day, when proud werewolves lived on a witches leash. Aiden turns his head, indicating that his wolves should attack the vampires.  Josh just barely manages to hold off a werewolf, before Aiden calls a halt to the attack, announcing that the vampire privileges have been revoked. Aiden warns that the vampires need to leave because the next time he returns, he will not to call off his wolves.

A morose Cami tells Vincent that New Orleans is the city of death and that they constantly hold a big party to deny the unavoidable fact that they are all going to die. Did she take lessons in angsting from Klaus and Elijah? Vincent questions if this is what Cami is afraid of and suggests that Cami is dodging his questions.  It looks like Vincent is acting as Cami's therapist.  Cami explains that she is attracted to the wrong type of guy and Vincent suggests that she should talk about it.  Cami brings up a guy she was with, who was smart and funny but adds that she was nothing but his rebound girl.  Cami asserts that she should stay away from him.  Vincent continues to dig into Cami's dating history and Cami brings up a guy who had an abusive mother and father, who got under her skin but he had goodness in him deep down. This means that Cami is yet another woman in Julie Plec's world who is willing to look aside from serial murder. What is Vincent up to now?

Back at the Original compound, Elijah bellows for Klaus and Hayley intercepts Elijah to say that she is not Klaus's wife and has no idea where he is.  Elijah then informs Hayley that her people (read: werewolves) have just attacked his people (read: vampires)  and snarks that now is not the best time for Hayley's particular brand of sass. Sass really? Hayley responds that Klaus left a few hours ago and suggests that Elijah simply try calling him on the phone.  Before turning away, Hayley points out that the beasts Elijah referred to are her people and though they might be under Esther's control, if Elijah hurts the werewolves, his "bitch mother" will be the least of Elijah's problems.  Gotta say, I am starting to really like Hayley's spunk.

In the Quarter, people are partying it up, as Cami makes her way through, talking to Davina on the phone.  Davina is in an isolated location watching Michael work through some calisthenics and comments that things are complicated. I bet they are, when you have a tiger by the tail.   Davina however does not divulge her location but ends the conversation quickly.  

Cami runs into a grinning Klaus and demands to know what he wants.  Klaus wastes no time explaining that he wants Davina because Devina has resurrected Michael. This is news to Cami, who quickly points out that Davina did not reveal her location.  Apparently, Klaus heard the church bells in the background and surmises that Davina is at a piece of property her family owns.  Ummm yeah, why wasn't this the first place Klaus and Elijah checked?  They are over 1000 years old and seriously didn't think to check this out?  Cami asks what the plan is and Klaus suggests that Cami reason with Davina because Cami won't like the other alternative. Cami tells Klaus to come with her. 

The Basilisk's Creed Omnibus by Eme Strife

The world is torn by a series of strange and random events. Matt, leader of the Golden Reapers, has been tasked to investigate this – and it may all be linked to the strange woman who visited him and vanished without a trace.

Unfortunately, I had a lot of problems with this book, starting almost from the beginning which didn’t bode well for my finishing it and, alas, I didn’t

We begin with our two main characters – Matt and Eli – being transported randomly and for unexplained reasons to each other in a dream. The following 15% of the book describes how hot they find each other.

That’s pretty much it. We have Eli briefly exploring her new surroundings, then seeing Matt and then DUMP page after page after page of how sexy the other looks/sounds/smells. It just goes on and on and on and on and includes such gems of Matt deciding to call this complete stranger “kitten” and betting he could “make her pussy purr” and saying she has a “pretty collarbone” and how close she was to “making his dick blow”. Apparently by just standing their throwing out sex scent. Dare I say that sounds rather… premature? Throw in him grabbing her and not letting her go even as she said “no”, only thinking better of it when he outright asks her if she’s a virgin; all in all we have a really unpleasant scene. This was continued when they woke up and Eli described how wet she was.

Well, I knew nothing about Eli’s job, what she did or why or where she was or what mattered to her – but I knew she’s just woken up wet and sticky. I have to say, it’s not in my top 10 most favourite introduction to a character.

I nearly stopped there, but I held on and we started into Eli’s life working to make ends meet (interjected with random inserts of Matt’s hotness) and on to Matt who proceeded to have a series of really really clumsy monologues (with random inserts of Eli’s hotness).

The writings style is rambling, confused and reads like a stream of consciousness exercise. I think the book has tried to capture someone’s thoughts without any edit, as if someone just sat and babbled every thought that came into their head – it’s lost, hard to read, full of distracting asides and not very fun. Every now and then the narrative is broken by random expletives (Eli also likes to throw in random “Ugh!” in her narrative) – usually in threes on and separate lines. In fact that happens a lot – something will happen then they’ll curse (or this supernatural general of the Reaper army will invoke the name of Christ when they’ve already rambled on about the “Holy Basilisk” which is just shoddy world building) then next line curse again, then, next line, another rambling expletive.

They both also have a very immature voice which seems odd for their ages – both apparent and in reality. Matt in particular sounds like a petulant and angry teenager, not a commander of a supernatural army. It all draws out the narrative, makes everything clumsy and the characters entirely unbelievable as reasonable, let alone capable, adults.

Once Upon a Time, Season 4, Episode 5: Breaking Glass

The Snow Queen does sinister snow magic involving creating a head out of ice.

While Emma and Elsa (who has been wearing that dress a while now) continue to burrow through the town’s extensive records to find Anna; and Emma is sure that the Snow Queen has messed with their memories since she clearly knows them both (and Emma has an awesome memory). Among the files Emma finds Regina’s old stalker photos of her –including her talking to the Snow Queen (Will is still in prison and still immense fun). So it’s off to see Regina and Emma is all worried that their tentative relationship – even budding friendship – is now irreparably broken.

Emma has a brief statement on how when you screw someone over it’s hard to go back and we plunge into a flashback. Not to fairyland, but 1998 in Minnesota when young Emma was shoplifting and meets Lilly, a similarly young girl who covers for her and joins in some theft by stolen credit card instead. They rapidly become firm friends, surviving together (Lily also has a star mark on her wrist which will probably be relevant).

It all falls apart when Lilly’s father shows up and it turns out everything she said about being like Emma was a lie. Lilly tries to talk to Emma – that she does want to leave home, that she’s adopted, that she feels invisible and is like Emma but Emma refuses to listen

To the present. Regina, meanwhile is being snarked by Sidney the magic mirror (“it’s so hard to keep track of her majesty’s nemesis”) – she’s setting the mirror to find the Snow Queen to unfreeze Marion. Emma goes to see her about the pictures and Regina denies all knowledge of both what Emma and the Snow Queen were arguing about in them – or where Sidney is. She’s snarky and clearly Not Happy with Emma. Emma extends an olive branch offering to have Regina’s back – Regina hits back that Emma has never ever had her back. When Emma leaves Sidney reports he’s found the Snow Queen (he tries to barter the information – but Regina holds all the aces)

While Emma is arguing with Regina, Elsa is lured away from the car by a shadowy figure she thinks is Anna – she continues chasing after Anna calling for help in the distance, making a huge ice bridge to cross a cavern. She eventually finds Anna with the Snow Queen – and, of course, Anna is just an icy illusion.

The Snow Queen imprisons Elsa in chains of ice, makes some cryptic comments about the past she can’t remember and tells Elsa she needs her both out of the way and all worried and afraid.

Regina follows Sidney’s directions to where the Snow Queen is and runs into Emma, looking for the vanished Elsa. Regina snarls and Emma asks to follow her to find Elsa and the Snow Queen. Emma keeps trying to ingratiate herself with Regina and Regina lashes back until Emma finally demands why Regina’s being so mean – Regina isn’t impressed, Emma’s “being nice” is a blatant attempt to get Regina on side because Emma is feeling guilty. Regina isn’t there to help absolve Emma’s guilt – nor, for that matter, does Regina care what Emma’s intent was; she hurt Regina and feels guilty and Emma has to live with that just as Regina lives with her own guilt.

As they cross Elsa’s ice bridge, the weather acts up and Regina realises Sidney has led them into a trap – she accuses him of being a traitor (while Emma is angry that Regina lied about knowing where Sidney is) though he is rightly unconvinced with the idea he owes loyalty to the woman who imprisoned him.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Fangs for the Fantasy Podcast: 2014, Episode 21

It's time for our podcast! 
You can join us here and you can listen live on our youtube channel, here, or in our sidebar. All will also carry a recording after the show is finished. As ever all our previous podcasts can be found in the archive

The podcast begins at 7:00pm EST (technology willing)

This episode we discuss The Walking Dead, Grimm, Constantine and Z Nation

20th October - 27th October: Midnight’s Daughter by Karen Chance
27th October - 3rd November: The Prince Lestat by Anne Rice
3rd November - 10th November: Tempest Revealed by Tracy Deebs 
10th November - 17th November: Under Suspicion by Hannah Jane
17th November - 24th November: Loki’s Wolves by K.L. ArmstrongM.A. Marr
24th November - 1st December: West of Sunset by Dennis Upkins

The Walking Dead, Season Five, Episode Three: Four Walls and a Roof

Bob sits and Garrett explains to Bob that he had the choice to join them, or feed them and justifies his position by stating that when bears are starving, they eat their young. Garrett continues to eat and  comments that Greg and Mike had come very close to getting their hands on Carol but Carol drove away with Darryl.  It seems that Carol is next  on the food list and Garrett adds that he likes eating women best (no that's not a double entendre).  Apparently, it's all about the extra layer of fat women have.  Garrett then brings up Sasha, saying that pretty people taste better. Garrett continues to snack on Bob and says that he is going to get the entire group. Bob starts to cry but Garrett asserts that he is being a human being by talking to Bob.  Bob's tears turn to laughter and at first, The Terminus people believe Bob has lost it, until Bob shows them his shoulder where he has been bitten, calling himself "tainted meat".  The Terminus people start spitting out pieces of Bob in a panic, wondering if the fact that they "cooked him" will save them, as Bob screams, "tainted meat." 

A worried and armed Sasha is out looking for Bob.  Sasha comes across the tree Bob marked.  A zombie attacks and Sasha just manages to take it out.  Rick and Tyreese come up behind Sasha and she tells them about Bob being missing.  Rick says that Darryl and Carol are missing as well.

Maggie is inside the church with the rest of the group when Sasha, Rick and Tyreese return.  Sasha is quick to accuse Gabriel of having something to do with their missing members.  Sasha screams, asking where her people are, as Gabriel backs away claiming ignorance.  Rick asks Gabriel why he brought them there and brings up the message on the church, as he attacks Gabriel.  Gabriel admits to locking the church doors at night and not letting his congregation in after Atlanta was bombed.  Gabriel says that there were so many people begging and screaming that it caused the dead to come for them. Gabriel listened as entire families begged for mercy and called his name as they were devoured by the walkers.  Gabriel cries as he explains about burying the remains of the parishioners  and how he believes Rick's group was sent by the lord to punish him. 

Eugene announces that there is someone outside lying in the grass and the group rushes out to find Bob.  They just manage to protect Bob from the walkers which were about to surround him and Rick notices the later A on the wall.  Inside the church, Bob explains that he was attacked by Garret and how the people were eating his leg right in front of them.  Rick asks about Darryl and Carol and Bob tells them that Garret said the two drove off.  Sasha talks about getting Bob pain relief and he tells them to save it and shows his bite mark.  Bob explains that he was bitten at the food bank. Sasha takes Bob's hand and Gabriel offers up the sofa in his office.

Rick asks Gabriel if he knows the place Bob was talking about and Gabriel answers that it's a ten minute walk through the woods from the church.  The group then talks about what to do about Bob. Abraham stands with weapon in hand and suggests that they need to leave immediately but Rick points out that Carol and Darryl are still out there and that they will return.  Abraham however is not concerned and points out that there is a clear danger to Eugene, adding that if the group won't come with them, they will simply leave. Abraham turns to leave and Rick asks if they plan on leaving on foot.  Abraham points out that he fixed the bus and Rick counters with the fact that there are more of his people than Abraham.  Things get heated, so Glenn intervenes to ask Abraham if he is really going to be any safer leaving in the middle of the night.  Glenn points out that they need each other to get through this.  Tara says that she has an idea and promises to leave with Abraham no matter what, if he just agrees to wait a few days. Abraham however is not interested and orders Rosita to grab the gear and tells Eugene to get moving.  Eugene is slow to move and tells Abraham that he does not want to move but eventually stands and starts to leave the church. Rick threatens Abraham about the bus and Abraham simply replies, "try and stop me."  Glenn again asks Abraham to stay and help them and promises that the group will go with him.  Abraham finally relents and agrees to wait until high noon because they are not waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Sasha is nursing Bob and she questions why he didn't tell her when it happened. Bob says that he knew that when Sasha found out, it would become all about the end and he really liked the middle.  Sash lies with her head on Bob's chest.

Rick starts his rally the troops speech, saying that the Terminus people think that they are in control. Rick reminds the group what the Terminus people are capable of.  Tyreese sits in a corner and Rick questions whether or not Tyreese is up for this but before Tyreese can answer, Sasha enters the room and announces that she is going to be a part of this.

Later, standing over Bob, Tyreese advises Sasha to stay with Bob because time is precious and adds how much he wishes he had that time with Karen.  Sasha asks Tyreese if remembers what he felt and what he wanted to do.  Tyreese suggests that forgiveness is facing the wrong but Sasha wants none of it and refuses to forgive the people who hurt Bob.  Tyreese points out that when Bob opens his eyes, the only thing he is going to want to see is Sasha's face.  Sasha forces a knife in Tyreese's hand and orders Tyreese to put it through Bob's temple if he stops breathing, adding that this is what Bob would want, before walking away.

Midnight's Daughter (Dorina Basarab #1) by Karen Chance

Dorina Basarab is worried about her room-mate, Claire. She’s missing and that’s not like her – worse, she is hearing some very disturbing rumours about what has happened to her. Not only is Claire a friend, but her powers are able to calm Dorina’s Dhampire rage.

Mircea, Dorina’s vampire father, has the resources to find Claire – but to use them he wants something in return; he wants Dorina to hunt down her escaped fugitive uncle. Vlad. Dracula. Who is every bit as terrifying as his legend would suggest.

Working with the reluctant and equally outcast Louis-Cesare, Dorina has to find and defeat a vampire who is legendary for his cunning and evil – but there’s a war raging between the supernaturals of North America and even the fae are involves with their own shady machinations.

We have a very rich world here – with so much going on and being involved in the plot. There’s Dorina and her family, the Basarabs. Yes, Dracula, but more than just a redrawing of Stoker, this is far more about the family from Wallachia. In fact, Dracula’s brothers, Mircea and Radu, play far more of a role in this book than Vlad himself. There’s a lot of complex and involved family dynamics there that are really interesting to explore.

On top of the vampires and dhampires we have fae of several stripes, light and dark, different courts, different factions, different creatures, royal politics and all kinds of shenanigans.

Then there’s a war on between several of the factions that affects Dory, including the Vampire Senate. Even though Dorina doesn’t directly involve herself with the war, the fact it takes resources and creates new factions to be wary of is a constant background to the story – it’s pervasive and even when it’s not overwhelming it’s always there. We never have to really see the war to feel the scale of it and its effect on their society. It all comes together to be a really well written, rich world I enjoy.

Dorina and her side-kick/fairly obvious love interest Louis-Cesare are moderately decent characters. I find them both extremely typical of the genre. Dorina is the kick-ass Urban Fantasy female protagonist, she has woo-woo that is rare, she’s a dangerous fighter but there are definitely darker and more dangerous things out there. She has anger issues, a whole lot of anger issues. Louis-Cesare is a super sexy French vampire who has arrogance issues and a tragic, tortured past. They’re not bad characters, but they’re genre templates, we’ve seen them before and we will certainly see them again. There’s a lot of them raging at each other that gets in the way of the plot, but the inevitable sexual tension doesn’t – both are pretty focused on the mission and most of their conflict comes from them struggling over who is in charge. They do stay on mission –but have drastically different ideas over how to do that

Fangs for the Fantasy book of the week

The next episode of our podcast will be starting tonight at 7:00pm EST (12:00am GMT). You will be able to listen to us on our youtube channel, or by the link in the sidebar or by the post here that will be posted. We hope to see you there

Like all  the Fangs for the Fantasy podcast(archives here) we read a book and discuss it on the show. 

To give people a chance to read along with us we include a list of our planned books of the week for the next few shows, so people can get the books, read them and join in the conversation.

20th October - 27th October: Midnight’s Daughter by Karen Chance
27th October - 3rd November: The Prince Lestat by Anne Rice
3rd November - 10th November: Tempest Revealed by Tracy Deebs 
10th November - 17th November: Under Suspicion by Hannah Jane
17th November - 24th November: Loki’s Wolves by K.L. ArmstrongM.A. Marr
24th November - 1st December: West of Sunset by Dennis Upkins

Haven, Season 5, Episode 7: Nowhere Man

Audrey is back with us after last week – and Mara didn’t go away.

Everyone agrees they have no idea what happened and why Duke’s released Trouble caused an Audrey to manifest, but it did. Duke and Audrey are all for handing Mara over to the Guard, but Nathan isn’t so keen with Dwight having left town (probably because of his estranged and now dead sister). Audrey was connected to William last season, any harm done to him happened to Audrey as well, he worries the same may be true for Mara (go downstairs and stick her with a pin or something and test it).

Audrey doesn’t want to spend any time with Mara so it’s Duke who goes down to figure out whether there’s a connection or not. Of course, Mara isn’t co-operative but agrees to tell them – in exchange for the Crocker journal. Duke realises she’s worried about the Troubles his family has absorbed because, unlike all the other Troubles, Mara isn’t immune to the ones inside Duke. Duke decides a different plan – cut off one of Mara’s toes then Audrey would lose hers, proving it (uh, I think my pin prick may be a more sensible suggestion). Of course, Duke’s ridiculously extreme suggestion means Mara knows he won’t do it – because he’s not going to cut off Audrey’s toe.

Nathan and Audrey are getting reacquainted, naked, in bed (Audrey losing a toe at that point would have really ruined the mood. Hey, if they are linked, do they share sensations beyond pain and injury?). But Nathan gets a message about a Trouble and reveals why he is reluctant to take Audrey out investigating (we’ve handwaved everyone’s suspicion by Nathan apparently having told everyone she’s Audrey again and everyone being totally ok with that) – he thinks she’s lost her Trouble immunity since he can’t feel her touch. Still Audrey takes this as a great sign that she has become her own person

Of course, when they go to the Trouble scene (with three dead) not everyone is accepting Nathan’s handwave and the grieving survivor assumes Audrey is a monster who caused the deaths; though Rebecca (a new recurring police officer) assures her Audrey only looks like Mara. Though Rebecca herself doesn’t agree – she’s just following Nathan’s instructions. The dead themselves haven’t left bodies – just shadows on the wall. They do connect the victims to the farmer’s market and Nathan realises that “hey she’s totally not a bad guy any more” isn’t really going to keep Audrey safe, so asks her not to go with him.

At the farmer’s market Nathan runs into Reggie the angry Guard member who isn’t Nathan’s biggest fan. Someone was mean to him so he goes back to the office instead to look at old cases with shadows – and as he talks to Audrey on the phone he disappears in a flash of light

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Constantine, Season One, Episode One: Non Est Asylum

The episode begins in Ravenscar, a psychiatric facility in Northern Ireland. John Constantine is strapped to a table and given a mouth guard. Constantine is then given electroshock treatment, while in the background we hear Constantine's voice saying that he came to Ravenscar voluntarily. Constantine explains that he is an exorcist and that there are days one needs to forget in his line of work, though there are some days he never will.

Shift to Constantine sitting in a psychiatrists office being questioned about the death of a young woman in Newcastle. Dr. Roger Huntoon asks if Constantine remembers the murderer and John refers to the murderer as a demon, claiming to see said demon every time he closes his eyes. Huntoon suggests that Constantine feels guilty for not being able to protect the victim and has thus created the murderer as the embodiment of evil. John argues that not everyone is powerless against demons and Dr. Huntoon notes that before John became a resident at the hospital, John was working as an exorcist, demonist and a master of the dark arts. John snarks that he should change master to petty dabler to avoid being accused of sounding arrogant. Finally, in frustration, John demands that Huntoon refer to Astra  by her name rather than as the victim.  John adds that Astra is nine years old and suffering for all of eternity and demands that Huntoon make him believe that there are no such things as demon.

John is now sitting in a group therapy session and is clearly bored by someone's share.  Three cockroaches cross the floor and John decides to follow and finds that the bugs are increasing as he follows them.  He follows them to an art area, where a woman is painting on the wall but it is covered in roaches.  John approaches her, telling her to stop, only too see that her eyes have gone opaque.  John walks away saying that this is not his job and then turns suddenly saying that he is addressing the demon inside the woman. He puts his hand on the woman's forehead and she flies across the room screeching.  John demands that the demon leave this place, as it continues to fly about the room. Suddenly, the demon flies across the room trying to attack John and he forces it to the ground  while speaking in Latin.  The windows explode and they get covered in paint.  The demon leaves and John finds the  message the demon wrote on the wall LIVDIE.  John declares that he has been wasting his time in the hospital, then blames the woman for the mess, before walking out of the room.

In Atlanta Georgia, Liv Aberdine sits and chats with someone about her future. Liv packs up her things to leave and pauses to open her fortune cookie, only to find it empty. Liv declares that she has no future.  Liv heads outside and starts her car and starts to reverse but she keeps getting a warning that there is something behind her.  Liv gets out of the car and checks behind the car and when she bends to look under it, the car starts to back up on its own.  A panicked Liv screams but the car shuts down.  Liv gets back into the car to find that it won't start and suddenly the lights go out in the parking lot.  Liv starts walking and the ground around her begins to crack, tossing her in the air.  The ground sinks, creating a big hole and Liv takes off running. 

John pulls up in a yellow cab, asking if Liv is in a bit of trouble and introducing himself.  Liv pulls out pepper spray and orders John to stay back. John simply tells Liv that she is pointing the pepper spray the wrong way because he is not the one who is hunting her. . Liv demands that John stay away but John tells Liv that is she doesn't listen, she will be dead by morning. Liv decides to call the police and John hands over his card saying that this is where the police can reach him, or Liv can, if she enjoys bleeding.  Liv reads the card, as John climbs into the hole.

Something flies overhead and John calls out that he is a nasty piece of work.  Manny, an angel, tells John that he shouldn't be down here and questions what brings John back to the street. John explains that he was asked to protect a lady by an old friend. Manny says that he was asked to watch over John.  Constantine makes it clear however that he is not in the business of hanging out with angels and that Manny will ruin his reputation. Manny brings up the hospital and John screams that he checked out and is okay.  John moves to pull away and Manny grabs him saying that John damned a girl along with himself.  Manny adds that while he cannot change John's fate, he can ease John's suffering.  John instructs Manny to go and feed off of someone else's loss but Manny replies that John's is exquisite. When John tells Manny that he can handle a demon attack, Manny points out that John has been out of action  for awhile and that people can sense what is on the way.  John asks what is on the way and suddenly sirens sound in the distance. Many quickly flies away, as John screams, "what's on the way?"

Liv gets out of Talia's car, thanking her for picking her up. Talia says that it's not problem as she works five minutes away from Liv.  The two women enter an apartment building but are unaware that not only are they being watched, they are being followed.  Liv enters her apartment but notices a strange man in the hallway.  The man pulls out a large knife and stands in front of Liv's closed door.  In her apartment, Liv reads her new fortune which simply says, "trust him."  

In her apartment, Talia is working on her laptop when it goes on the fritz. In the hallway of the building, the lights flash on and off and we see a triangular carving at Liv's door, along with a salt semi-circle  on the floor.  Live sits up suddenly when a helicopter light flashes in her window. Liv opens her door to find the area swarming with cops and a dead Talia on the floor of her apartment. A horrified Liv turns to re-enter her apartment and she notices the carving on her door.

The medical examiner loads Talia's body into the van and she is driven away.  In the back of the van, Talia's body starts to thrash, causing the driver to stop the vehicle and shake the body bag.  Talia thrashes in the bag, as the driver begs her to hold on so that he can let her out. Of course, when he opens the bag, it's empty, so he uses his flashlight to look around the van, only to have a now demon Talia attack him.

John is leaning against his cab, when Liv pulls up in a cop car and gets out. Liv approaches John and shows him the symbol which was carved into her door.  John explains that it's an Egyptian symbol called the eye of Horace and that it's a symbol of protection.  Liv says that she saw a man in her hallway last night and that she believes, he killed Talia. John knocks on the car and Chaz gets out of the car to be introduced as Constantine's oldest friend and the man who made the carving on Liz's door. Chaz simply tells Liv that he is glad she is safe, before getting back into the car. Liv questions why anyone would want her dead because she is a nobody.  Constantine explains that Liv is not a nobody and that he promised Liv's father that he would keep her safe. Liv says that it's not possible because her father died before she was born and then she turns to leave. John calls out that whoever told Liv that was lying and adds that her father died just last year.  Constantine pulls out a bag out of his pocket and tells Liv to open it because her father wanted her to have it.

Suddenly, the medical examiner van speeds past John and Liv and crashes into Liv's place of business.  Chaz gets out of the car and joins Liv and John as they rush towards the building. John yells for everyone to get out and orders Chaz to get the people out. Liv finds her nameplate on the floor and realises that had she not been talking to John, the van would have killed her.  John explains that whatever is after Liv must be able to feel her energy.  John tells Liv that they won't give up until she is dead.  Liv walks to the front of the van to find Talia struggling to breathe, with opaque eyes, stuck in the wreckage.  Liv is shocked and says that Talia is alive but John corrects that assumption and informs Liv that something is using Talia's body.  John asks Talia who sent her and she lets out a howl, shutting down all of the electricity in the area.