Two things: I love this show, and how how HOW does it keep getting better and better week after week? AMAZING. Last week's episode of Grimm saw Nick (David Giuntoli) attempt to enjoy a romantic weekend getaway with Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch). Sadly for Nick, now that he's a Grimm the job goes everywhere with him...there is no turning that part of his brain off. Also, no offense to any perfectly nice places called something along the lines of "Whispering Pines," but seriously in films and TV shows going some place with a name like that is never, EVER going to end well. ANYWAYS, remember that engagement ring that's popped up a couple of times? Well apparently Nick's finally decided to pop the question to Juliette, sure that an idyllic weekend away will be the perfect antidote to the Grimm-related stresses that have been plaguing them lately. En route to the rented cabin, the pair stops to ask directions at the home of Tim (Josh Randall) and Robin (Azura Skye), the latter his clearly terrorized wife. Nick barely hides his consternation when he sees the caustic Tim transform into a catlike Wesen -- newsflash to Nick, just leaving Portland doesn't make you any less of a Grimm, okay? :P
Juliette is extraordinarily disturbed by a glimpse she catches of Robin through a window, an unsettling impression she can't shake and is later reinforced when she witnesses Tim manhandling Robin and then forcibly dragging her inside their home. She gets Nick to call the local police department, but when the sheriff arrives nothing is done -- seriously did anyone not get a bad vibe from the sheriff's appearance? Ick. Anyways, Juliette's response to Robin's plight makes me wonder if perhaps the show has something planned for her in relation to Nick's work as a Grimm. She's proven time and again over the course of this season that she can keep a cool head in a crisis, and I think there's a lot of potential for her as some sort of partner in the Grimm-related work. Thoughts?
When Nick gets a Juliette-free moment he calls Monroe (Silas Weir Mitchell) to try and identify Tim. Monroe's reaction to Nick's call is priceless -- I just love how he whines about getting called, but as he proves later he really wouldn't have it any other way. :) It turns out that Tim is a Klaustreich, which is basically an EVIL alley cat. Klaustreichs are users, love 'em and leave 'em types -- and Monroe knows all of this because he ran afoul of one in his high school years (Monroe may have lost his girlfriend at the time, but the Klaustreich lost the battle with Monroe -- my cello playing, vegan Blutbad is a secret badass -- love it!). Tim's treatment of Robin is absolutely horrific -- preparing disgusting, worm-filled "protein shakes" that he actually force-feeds multiple times. This ranks as one of the most disgusting, chilling crimes in the show to date. The worm shakes are a revealing clue to Robin's Wesen identity -- she's revealed to be a Seltenvogel, a birdlike Wesen that produces a gold stone egg once in their lifetime. Between Robin's less than original name and the force-feeding thing, clearly Tim is controlling her with an eye to acquiring the stone. Robin's casting is one of the best as far as guest spots go this season -- Skye nails the mannerisms of a frightened, flighty bird, and her transformation scenes are among the most natural and likely in the show's history.
Back in Portland, poor Hank (Russell Hornsby) is becoming increasingly obsessed with the Hexenbiest Adalind (Claire Coffee) -- apparently her magic chocolate chip cookies turn people into stalkers. Poor Hank. *sigh* At least he's not eating like a goat like the recently recovered Sgt. Wu (Reggie Lee). (When is someone going to notice THAT mess??) Curiously enough, Adalind doesn't seem all that interested in manipulating Hank -- everything she does is at Renard's (Sasha Roiz) direction. Is she just a puppet, or is she involved with Renard? I cannot WAIT to find out what Renard's end game is, and what exactly his relationship is with Adalind -- who he is in the Wesen world that gives him the apparent position of power that he seems to possess. The writers have done a brilliant job building interest in Renard's character...and given how this show has improved week-over-week since its premiere, I have a great deal of confidence and excitement in seeing how everything plays out. (Side note: was Renard not the HOTTEST THING EVER in the above scene? I mean seriously?! *swoon*)
In other Portland-set news, Monroe is hanging out with Rosalie (Bree Turner), and while I don't think they are officially dating (yet), Monroe's crush makes me SO HAPPY. Seriously, just when I think he couldn't get more adorable HE DOES! When Nick calls Rosalie to ask her questions about Robin's Wesen identity, I LOVED Monroe's fake outrage (all to cover, I'm sure, that he's hanging out with Rosalie...like I said, ADORABLE!). Monroe's budding relationship with Rosalie is setting up -- I hope -- both a personal and professional partnership that this show will carry into its upcoming second season. Nick is in desperate need of another sensible, smart, broad-minded (in that they don't mind he's a Grimm) ally in the Wesen community. And so far, Rosalie seems to fit the bill perfectly. :) Side note: who has some theories on Rosalie's brother's stash of fake passports? Her brother had a history of some shady dealings as far as his business went, but nothing that to my mind required multiple passports. Is he some sort of spy, or in league with Renard somehow?
So, back to the action in Whispering Pines -- Robin sees an opportunity to run from Tim and takes it, but doesn't take Juliette up on her earlier offer of help. Nick follows her to make sure she's okay, and at this point I'm hoping he realizes how awesome Juliette is because she is game -- I love how she's willing to put herself out there, doesn't let fear determine her reaction to the current situation. In the woods, Nick misses Robin by mere moments -- after killing the one man who had agreed to try and help Robin escape from Tim, he drags her back to their home. Nick discovers the body and calls the local sheriff again -- and this is where everything starts to get all Deliverance-ish. When Nick beats the sheriff to Tim's farmhouse and rescues Robin from yet another forced wormshake feeding, she reveals that the sheriff is Tim's cousin and they're both in on the plot to control her until the "egg" in her neck is ready to hatch.
The whole "bird in captivity" aspect of this episode takes its cue from a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale -- "The Nightingale." In this story, the Chinese emperor keeps a nightingale captive in order to enjoy the bird's song whenever he likes. The story resolves a bit more happily for the nightingale and the emperor -- interestingly enough for this episode, it isn't the nightingale's song but it's egg that is what's valued. And that alteration to the Andersen fairy tale seems a bit reminscent of "Jack and the Beanstalk" and the giant's goose that layed golden eggs, no?
On the run in the woods, Robin starts to pass out because the "egg" is blocking her windpipe, ready to "hatch." In yet another example of Rosalie's awesomeness, she talks Nick through "delivering" the egg by cutting it out of Robin's neck. (I suppose this is the Grimm version of an emergency baby delivery -- ha!) Tim and the sheriff show up after the delivery, leading to an interesting moment -- Nick talks about how he cut the stone out of Robin's neck and two seconds later Juliette shows up with her gun -- don't you think she overheard that? Case-wise all's well that ends well -- the delicate gold egg shatters but Tim and his worthless and corrupt cousin are hauled off to jail. Personally Nick is in for another blow, though, as Juliette turns down his proposal. That moment KILLED me. I know why Nick feels like he must protect and shield her from his Grimm life, but secrets like that do not a sustainable relationship make, hmm? I mean how hard must that moment of raw honesty have been for Juliette? I respect her so much MORE now, you know? I really love Nick and Juliette together, and I hate the thought of trouble in their relationship -- but to the show's credit I think Nick/Juliette relationship stress is being handled extraordinarily well.