Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Strain, Season 4, Episode 6: Tainted Love

Eichorst has now decided Vasiliy is totally someone he needs to hunt down- so finds their previous minions and murders all but one of them. This leaves just Eichorst and Benjamin who he expects to drive him after Vasiliy.

Because The Strain is not even remotely subtle, Benjamin is a Native American and Eichorst confirms his evil credentials by saying how Hitler was totally interested in the genocide of Native Americans because it was so “effective.”

Y’know, on another show this could be handled with a level of nuance and interesting examination. I mean, just examining the fact that Hitler admired the genocide of the Native Americans and the whole idea of how there is, rightfully, a cultural loathing of Hitler (among… most people? And why gods why do I have to put that question mark there? Whyyyy?) as the most uniquely evil person when so many similar atrocities are completely ignored, or the perpetrators even lionised (or have really ugly statues made for them)

But this is The Strain, instead his rambling rant about Native American genocide is just an easy plot point for Benjamin to sacrifice himself to turn on the radio and warn Vasiliy that they’re coming. So it’s not an examination of genocide and horror or even developing the Native American character, but just invoking Native American genocide as justification for another Native American character to die for the non-native characters.


Vasiliy, Quinlan, Charlotte and Roman are all heading towards an airfield Roman knows so they can get a plane and then fly to New York with their new nuke. Roman is coming with them. Quinlan vaguely questions this complete stranger’s decision to join them and… beyond “hey better to fly with the nuke than being alone”. Uh-huh.

Unlike Roman, Quinlan would like them to leave Charlotte behind because of his Victoria flashbacks. See way back then he was all playing happy families with Louise and her daughter Lydia. But then he runs into vampires and realises that The Master is in town. He drops his happy family, even with tearful little moppet begging him to stay, to go kill the Master. It’s a complete goodbye because if he wins he still dies as one of the Master’s progeny.

Except when he tracks down the Master, he hesitates because he doesn’t want to die and leave them. So of course he then gets pinned down and the Master heads off and duly inserts his loving family in the fridge. Or, since it’s Victorian age, the Ice Age.

And so in the present Quinlan wants Vasiliy to leave Charlotte behind because she will make him hesitate because damn these women folk, right?

He needn’t worry though because Charlotte has no intention of coming with them on their suicide mission - she’s going to her cabin in Montana. Bye Vasiliy. Vasiliy is duly upset that he completely respected her agency to make her own decision and she went and selfishly made the wrong one. Booo.

When they arrive at the airbase to trade with Roman’s friend for a plane though she does make a last ditch effort to get Vasiliy to come with her… of course he’s not going to.

Eichorst catches up with them as they’re flying off and shoots at them with a biiiig gun. He does kill their trader friend but Charlotte has hung around to snipe at him and allow them to escape. Vasiliy is smug about her staying, Quinlan smug that him leaving her behind has helped them both. I personally think Eichorst is now likely to kill her but hey she’s been pretty much written out of the story.

Alas we must now rejoin Zach, the Worst. He is happily trying to buy Abby’s affections and stalk her only to find that she already has a boyfriend

Zach has a full petulant tantrum because he has been friendzoned and doesn’t get to buy his way into her affections. He is furious that following “the rules” and being nice hasn’t just earned him her love. Yes, it’s vile (and further provoked by the Master) and when Abby doesn’t play ball he lets his vampire minion eat her

The whole thing is just the worst - however I think it’s pretty clear that Zach is supposed to be the worst here. We’re not upholding this as appropriate behaviour - even if the Master masquerading as his mother does tell him that the newly turned Abby will never leave him. And even Zach seems disturbed by her new strigoi-ness.