Monday, February 22, 2016

Bitten, Season 3, Episode 2: Our Own Blood

Elena was introduced to Sasha last week, a man claiming to be her father, and his two children, her half-siblings. The whole idea of Sasha opens up a big can of worms for Elena – which she vocalises.

On the one hand this is usually kind of clumsy – a character happily narrates their internal conflict with all the precision and accuracy of a trained therapist. On the other it’s actually pretty well done as she explains all her concerns to Clay – the fact she had given up on finding her family, the fact she has a new family with Clay. The fact she has few memories of her (presumably) adoptive family and she feels this may jeopardise them. She has a lot of reasons to not want to open this door.

Of course, the life she’s currently living isn’t shiny either. Sasha even has to help her kill another of the Spanish wolves gunning for her. Jeremy is still playing great draconian alpha, dictatorial, unquestionable and not making great decisions. So far most of the new wolves he’s called in have been cannon fodder, except for Bucky, the traitor. He makes his move with Eduardo’s remaining wolves with another nifty fight scene with Elena and Clay fighting off another attack, with lots of bodies on the ground

One thing Bitten is making a point of doing is emphasising Elena’s skill. She isn’t second to Clay and she doesn’t need his protection. They aren’t letting her “only female werewolf” status turn her into a victim. Here she is clearly as dangerous as Clay – and even saves his life. Still, it does emphasise that they are constantly under siege and this isn’t the life she wants to live

We also have an interesting aside with Elena cooking for the influx of wolves Clay challenges her on this – that she doesn’t have to cook for them but she responds that just because she’s a woman doesn’t mean she shouldn’t cook.  There are two ways this can be pulled out: one, Elena isn’t just going to refuse to cook just because it’s a sexist stereotype (ultimately, there’s a lot of wolves here and they need to eat) and/or she’s not going to refuse to cook for other men because she’s engaged to Clay.

While Elena’s life is all rough and read – it’s clear Sasha isn’t exactly having a rosy time. Firstly, his son Alexei is approaching his first change and being on the move is not really the best way to deal with a new, out of control werewolve. And then there’s Roman, head of the Russian pack, who is willing to torment witches and listen to random prophecy in an attempt to hunt him down. He even comes to America and drops in on Jeremy just as Jeremy is finishing of Eduardo to look for Sasha

Sasha’s far from thrilled about this – since Roman has been out to get him for a long time and is even responsible for killing the mother of Alexei and Katja

If Elena was willing to talk to Jeremy before she certainly isn’t now since he’s not much into listening to her and seems interested in maintaining peace with Roman – there’s a decent chance he would hand Sasha over.

I think the lines have been pretty clearly drawn now for the themes of this season. What is family and how do they want to live. Mainly this is Elena with obvious choices between Sasha and Jeremy. But it applies to everyone – there’s Clay confronted with the demands Jeremy puts on him and life with Elena. And there’s Jeremy himself, taunted this episode by Eduardo that he has not family and no legacy, that his family line will also die out. There’s a question there as to whether Jeremy himself has a family, and if so then we have to look again at how he is treating them.