Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Midnight Texas, Season One, Episode Eight: Last Temptation of Midnight

Image result for midnight texas

Things with the veil are getting serious and we know this because Joe and Chuy have left town because Chuy is having a difficult time resisting the veil. I'm just going to say this up front, first they had Chuy in the plotbox for episodes and now the writers have written Joe away. I don't care what the reasoning is, shoving the only two LGBT characters into the plotbox is erasure and wrong. 

A horrible big bad is headed to Midnight. This monster has no face and he's standing in a graveyard pledging fealty to whom I assume is the demon who has set his sights on Fiji.  When the demon is approached by a reverend eager to help, the demon rips off his face and assumes his identity. The demon steals the reverend's truck and starts to make his way toward Midnight.  The demon's approach causes the residents of Midnight to change their behaviour.

Janet comes to see Fiji because she hasn't been feeling like herself recently and has been subject to really dark thoughts.  Fiji is quick to help Janet and while doing so, clearly starts to feel better about her present situation.  When Fiji leaves Janet alone in the shop to gather some herbs, Janet steals an athame and runs outside.  Hearing her door close Fiji searches for Janet, only to find Janet about to stab herself with the athame because she's been told that she doesn't deserve to live. Using her magic, Fiji rips the athame out of Janet's hands and Bobo quickly wraps his arms around Janet. Apparently, the demon which is terrorizing Fiji has no problem picking on vulnerable members of the community.

It's not just humans who are having trouble, the supernaturals are as well. Lem and Olivia are canoodling in bed and he becomes fixated on the the throbbing vein in her neck.  Lem is even slow to stop leeching when Olivia orders him to.

Olivia heads to the dinner and learns that the Rev, who is a vegetarian is eating meat. Clearly his beast side is taking control.  A worried Olivia then heads to see Bobo to talk about the behaviourial changes she's seen in both the Rev and Lemuel. Let's face it, a vampire and a weretiger could do a lot of damage if they lose control.  Olivia gives Bobo some silver bullets just in case.

Manfred is driving steadily away from Midnight, as Xylda tries to talk him into returning because she believes that Midnight is his destiny.  When Xylda admits that she didn't send Manfred to Midnight to be safe but because she had a vision of him there just before she died, Manfred loses his temper.  As far as Manfred is concerned, getting away from Midnight is a good thing because it means he won't constantly have headaches from seeing ghosts. Manfred promptly swallows the last of his pills.

Xylda believes that Manfred has to be a better man than she raised him to be. In a flashback, we learn that Manfred's mother simply abandoned him on Xylda's doorstep because she didn't know how to raise someone who could see and interact with the dead.  For his part, Manfred doesn't quite fit in with his peers because instead of playing with them, he plays with the ghosts of dead children. When Xylda breaks the news to Manfred that it's just the two of them now, she instructs him to stop interacting with the dead in public because people will think that he's weird. Xylda also tries to soften the blow of Manfred's abandonment by pointing out that because their home is on wheels, when the going gets tough, they can just move onto the next location.

Creek is not doing well and her father leaving her the deed to her childhood home in Midnight just reminds her of everything that she's lost. Creek serves Olivia a plate of food and Lemuel a glass of water, so that he looks like a customer. When Lemuel questions how she is doing, it dawns on Creek that she could get Lemuel to leech away her pain.  Olivia is quick to answer that leeching is more complicated than that and things become awkward fast.  When Creek leaves after apologising for her request, an angry Lemuel wants to know why it is that Olivia thought it would be okay for her to answer for him. Olivia plays it off as though she is jealous of Creek and that she sees leeching as something special to be shared only between the two of them. Lemuel however will not be so easily pacified.

Manfred's RV breaks down and he's forced to walk. Manfred stumbles along for hours and then finally collapses.  We get another flashback and this time it's Xylda on her death bed. Manfred keeps asking Xylda if she's sure that she wants to check out but Xylda's cancer is so far advanced that she doesn't see the point of continuing to fight. Xylda makes it clear that she loves Manfred dearly and that he has been the best part of her life; however, she's looking forward to moving on because that's a natural part of life. Xylda appears to Manfred and he's shocked to find that she's no longer tethered to the RV. Xylda explains that she's done her task which was to get Manfred to Midnight and now it's up to him to live up to his destiny. Xylda reminds Manfred of how powerful he is and encourages him to forget everything she taught him about hiding because lives depend on it. Manfred determines to make his way back to Midnight.

The demon just happens to be passing by in an even larger truck, having collected more dead bodies along the way, and Manfred hitches a ride with him. Manfred looks around the truck and sees the dead bodies in the back. The demon explains that he's on his way to Midnight to make a sacrifice in order to bring his master into this realm. When Manfred realises that he's going to be the next victim, he dives out of the truck.  The demon stops the truck to look for Manfred but when he doesn't find him, he decides to continue on with his journey. What the demon doesn't know is that Manfred has actually hidden himself among the dead bodies.

Things have come to a head between Lemuel and Olivia. Lemuel claims that he is hurt by the idea that Olivia finds what he is so repellent that she is unwilling to change so that she can be with him forever. Olivia tries talking Lemuel down, making it clear that she loves him but believes that living and dying is what is natural. Lemuel however will not be calm and decides that he will force the change on Olivia. A fight breaks out between the two and Olivia struggles to hold her own.

Manfred manages to find a cellphone on one of the bodies and he reaches out to Fiji to let her know that the demon is on the way to Midnight.  Fiji brings up what happened with Janet and how the demon is now preying upon vulnerable people and this causes Manfred to question if anyone has checked on Creek.

Fiji and Bobo rush to Creek's, where they find Creek just about to commit suicide. Bobo grabs Creek to stop her from self harm and Fiji sprays Creek with a potion she created to free people of the demon's hold.  Creek is confused when she returns to herself and is uncertain about what would make her suddenly desire to kill herself. Manfred, having arrived in town rushes to Creek's side and is relieved to find that she's okay.  Fiji and Manfred then rush to Olivia's, where they spray Lemuel to stop his violent attack on Olivia. A horrified Lemuel comes back to himself and cannot believe what he almost did. Lemuel reaches out to Olivia and she is quick to declare that she doesn't want to be touched.

Manfred tells Olivia and Lemuel that they will have to work out their problems later because they have a demon to deal with.  The scoobie crew rushes outside to find that the demon has stacked the dead bodies and is about to set them on fire.  Fiji uses her magic to rip the lighter out of the demons hand.  Unfortunately, the demon manages to start the fire from hell and so Manfred uses his powers to order the ghosts to drag the demon back to hell. The scoobie crew is impressed that Manfred managed to pull this off but he explains that the sacrifice was accepted and that they still have a problem to deal with, even if for now the immediate danger has passed.

Fiji freaks out about how close the demon is to Midnight, particularly because she is informed that the demon has fixated on her.  Bobo promises Fiji that he will keep her safe.  This clearly makes Fiji feel better but she's not about to forget Bobo's past as a white supremacist.

With things settled for now, Manfred explains to Creek that he's back and that he's willing to wait until she gets her shit together because he cares and wants to be with her.

I really love Olivia and Lemuel as a couple so it will be tough if they break up. Lemuel was motivated to force the change on Olivia because he feels hurt by her decision to say human. He made it clear that he expected to awaken one day to a dear John letter because that's Olivia's nature.  Anyone can choose to end a relationship at any time but it's understandable why Lemuel would be upset. Instead of keeping his feelings to himself, he should have been honest with Olivia. Also, Olivia shouldn't be so cavalier about her relationship with Lemuel. Lemuel attacking Olivia is clearly going to be a problem going forward. Lemuel may not have been himself but trust issues are clearly going to arise from this fight.

On a side note, I loved seeing Olivia take on Lemuel.  I love that she can be a bad ass when she needs to be and is hyper aware that no matter how soft spoken Lemuel is, at the end of the day, he's a vampire.

As though we didn't need further confirmation, Last Temptation of Midnight confirmed confirmed that Manfred is the chosen one.  I am so tired of the chosen one trope at this point, particularly when it comes in the form of a straight, white, cisgender, able bodied man.

It looks like Xylda has passed on and though she said it is the order of things, I'm really going to miss her character.  Xylda was great comic relief.  I also think that the character deserved a better send off than what she got.
 the homie GIF

There are only two episodes left and so I suppose the rest of the time will be spent dealing with thinning veil.  I'm looking forward to that simply because I'm done with the monster of the week and want to see something substantive happen. Yes, Midnight Texas is fun and full of cheese but it's time to leave the holding pattern behind.