Monday, November 12, 2018

Van Helsing, Season 3, Episode 5: Pretty Noose

After various time travelling shenanigans, Vanessa, Scarlett and Axel head to San Francisco - because that’s where the B’ah sailed to a couple of hundred years ago so of course she’s definitely still there? Apparently?

Anyway, they arrive in the city and find three very young soldiers who are the only remnant of the military presence in the city. They talk about how their unit was working to try and secure the city until new vampires with shiny powers showed up and started murdering them all. They also recognise Vanessa by her super powers, have apparently heard of her and think she is their saviour.

Axel is obviously moved by the plight of these teens, struggling to keep fighting but not knowing what to do without any leadership. Vanessa decides to encourage Axel to stay with them and help them partly because she rather blatantly doesn’t want him there and is as fluffy and friendly as a honey badger.

With Axel dumped, Vanessa and Scarlett head off, Scarlett suggests some level of concern for Axel and Vanessa is not having this - caring for people is not allowed! There can only be endless rage!!!!!

Pictured: Vanessa

Scarlett does manage to get Vanessa to almost smile talking about her daughter Dylan before we get a combat scene with Chinese vampires throwing around lots of martial arts including pointless side flips done only to look impressive. They fight and fight and fight and fighter and ye gods this fight goes on and on and it would have more effect if it weren’t for the fact Vanessa is pretty much immortal. They win with the completely unnecessary help from Barry, a human in a luchador mask. He introduces them to his little group sort of led by Marybeth, a local weather anchor who has become kind of defacto leader simply because everyone recognises her.

They tell Vanessa that the vampire influx is recent and she assumes that the B’ah was asleep until she had her memory dream which woke her up. Ok…. I guess… your dream wakes up vampires across the country who are apparently asleep? Ooookay, not the most ridiculous plot I’ve seen

Of course Vanessa feels super guilty - because she woke the B’ah. She’s also worried because Scarlett has been poisoned with B’ah poison and is now dying - but mainly so Vanessa can go off lone wolfing.

She does with Barry the disposable guide heading to a warehouse with many boxes which they conclude there are many vampires

Well. No. Shit.

While Axel leads his baby soldiers into an ambush in which they’re all imprisoned. Oops.

Over to the rest of the cast who, surprisingly, haven’t just disappeared because they’re irrelevant. At Denver, a haven of humanity, Julius, Flesh (Phill), Joline and Doc (Sarah) have all arrived and passed through quarantine. At which point they’re duly shaken to find how normal Denver is. How everyone leads relatively normal lives, the availability of regular food and something resembling safety. It’s a major culture shock

They’re all signed housing - Julius sharing with Phil which does not go well because Julius as a vampire is the one who actually turned Phil in the first time. Phil is holding grudges. Julius gets work in a bar

While Joline and Sarah live together in a house with one bed and a lot of awkwardness. There’s a lot of very very well presented chemistry Sarah doesn’t know what to do with. They both get a job in a hospital which gives Sarah access to a lab so she can study the Eldest blood she has, and gives Joline a lot of anxiety because she’s not a medical professional and is faking it. It’s not like anyone is checking and she does her best to wing it with help from Sarah and creepy Jared who asks her on a date: Joline sets him back saying she has a girlfriend

When she tells Sarah this the awkwardness ratchets up to 10,000 - Joline says she only said it because she wanted to put Jared off… but she also likes Sarah. And Sarah agrees the same… and they kiss

Following which Sarah completely blanks Joline and puts up all kinds of walls which infuriates Jolene. In this world where you can die at any time she doesn’t want to leave things unsaid. And if this has made things awarked with Sarah she’ll move

Sarah begs her to stay and in panic tells Joline she’s a virgin to much shock, embarrassment and Joline’s reassurance. Sarah’s story is powerful and surprisingly deep and implies a lot - living a life pushing people away because she had no interest in a relationships follows the story of a lot of closeted LGBTQ people who haven’t accepted they were LGBTQ because same-sex relationships have been completely off her radar of things that are possible. And now she has Joline who she is attracted to and interested with and kind of scared and lost and not knowing what to do with it. It’s a powerful and very real story.