Big Feet (Episode 21, May 11, 2012) – Spoilers! Grimm, oh Grimm. How much do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Once we got by the initial shaken camera Blair Witch‘esque opening, the show proceeded in awesomely brutal fashion. A couple of “big foot” hunters, or cryptozoologists, were attacked by an unknown animal. There was a lot of roaring and screaming and bodies being thrown! When it was all over, the Portland body count was up by two and the area had now become a haven for other cryptozoologist everywhere! Before I get into last night’s episode, I like to “revisit” the original tale that inspired last night’s episode. Skip down to the section Knowledge is power for the review.
“He stripped off his skin and tossed it into the fire and he was in human form again.”
The quote above is from one of my favorite Brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm tale, Hans My Hedgehog (Hans mein Igel). In the tale a peasant with enough money and land was still missing something from his happiness–he and his wife did not have a child. People would ask him why he didn’t he would become upset and wished, in a way, that he would have a child–even if that child were a hedgehog. As you know in many tales like this, one has only to wish for it to become true.
And so he did! He and his wife became the parents of Hans, a half hedgehog, half boy child. But this tale, as in every Grimm tale, isn’t a happy one; it is a tale of neglect and abuse. Since Hans was half hedgehog, he could not be loved and fed as a normal child. Because of his quills, he could not be fed from his mother nor could he lie in a normal bed. A place of straw was made for him behind the stove of his parents home. A warm and lonely dark place he’d lay for eight years. One day, his father grew tired of him being there and wished that Hans were dead.
But Hans did not die.
One day his father had to go into town and asked his wife, servant girl and Hans what would like for him to return with. Hans asked for a bagpipe. When his father returned with the bagpipe, Hans wished for his rooster be saddled and when it was, he rode off into the forest with his small flock of animals. There he stayed until a King rode by and he heard the beautiful music Hans played on his bagpipes. When the King seen it was Hans, he was in disbelief to see him and his rooster up in the tree. The King asked Hans for a way out of the forest; and Hans asked for the first thing that greeted him when he returned home and for him to write this promise on a piece of paper. The King agreed and thought that this was a simple request, but secretly he knew that his Princess greeted him each time on his return home, however, and so the King did not write the promise honestly. Since Hans could not read, the King wrote that this very thing would not happen.
There was another King that approached Hans in the tale and again they made the same agreement, Princess included. The tale of Hans My Hedgehog proceeds dramatically and the end is something that you may not expect. How the tale of Hans pertains to last night’s episode has much to do with a Wessen who has the inability to transform from his creature status to human. In the Hans tale, he was able to remove his hedgehog skin and return to human form.
Knowledge is power.
Finally, it is good to see Juliette in action! A farmer out checking on his animals took a shot at something in the dark. One of his horses was injured and Juliette (Bitisie Tulloch) was called in to check on one of his animals. I like to see that she is finally participating in the show dynamic and the season definitely was missing her ‘view’ on the goings on within the show. Much of the season was missing interactions from her character and slowly, in the episode before the last, we may be able to guise what will be her character intent. After seeing the result of the attack on the horse, discovering a crime scene, and after doing a bit of lab work, she is beginning to realize that the tales she heard as a child just might be real. When she told this to Nick (David Giuntoli) at the end of the episode, you could almost see a smirk on his face. What her character will bring to the new season may have a lot to do with her para-human discovery in this episode.
Hank (Russell Hornsby), while in pursuit of the loosed Wildermann, runs into Monroe as a Blutbat. Later in the episode, Hank witnessed Dr. Konstantine Brinkerhoff (Kenneth Mitchell) morph from a Wildermann, to his human form. This bring up a point Monroe brought up in another episode that humans cannot handle Wessen reality. Keeping these two worlds separate help to keep “our world” a reality. By Hank witnessing these transformations–and in disbelief of what he has seen–you can see just how his world, his perception of reality is fractured. How will Hank proceed with this information–or how he will deal with this information–is left to be seen. For now, he seems to be having a difficult time dealing with it.
He marks his territory.
Monroe (Silas Weir Mitchell) is the one of season’s most pivotal characters. Not only is his role mandatory, the show cannot work without him. In an earlier assessment, I believed his character to be a hindrance–a crutch Nick has to constantly refer to in order to make his character significance viable. This is no longer the case. This episode proved that the character Monroe is so much more than a Blutbad who help Nick communicate with other Wessen kind; he is a stand alone functional aspect of the series. He is motivated and making his own decisions now, revealing to Nick that he needed to distract the police from violating his personal space. He marks his territory around his house to not only deter other Blutbad’s from intruding, but he also does this to keep other animals confused and maintain their distance. He even found out more about this psychotherapist treating his Wessen friends. I am curious to see how his relationship will proceed with Rosalee (Bree Turner) will proceed in next season.
Nick is beginning to realize that his “secret” is slowly revealing itself. Hank and Juliette knows that something is going on now, and he is holding back as much information as he can but for how long? I like that he is using his aunt’s trailer and resources a bit more and his character is developing more into the Grimm he needs to be. Not only does he have to balance “who” he is, but he has to also maintain the fine balance between the imagined world. This will become more apparent in future episodes–especially now since his partner Hank and Juliette are taking notice of the differences. My concern for his character development is that will he be able to maintain this balance. What more will be revealed to him or if there will be a break in his interest in being a Grimm. Right now, his curiosity about who he is is fueling his interest in his job. We’ve already seen just how much this is affecting his personal life and it seems now in the finale, he will reveal to Juliette who he really is–a Grimm.
However, I feel complacent with the progress of the series overall. There’s still a lot of information and character details that are missing and the episodes still flow inconsistently from the previous ones. We still don’t know who or what is Capt. Renard (Sasha Roiz) and where’s Adalind? In Love Sick she lost her Wessen powers–and that was it. In the Three Coins in a Fuchsbau episode, the coroner was attacked. Where is she? Will she return to the series?
I am really holding off any harsh opinions until the season finale. This will determine if I will continue watching season two. Sounds dramatic, I know. But if the series continue with half episodes, I am not certain I will continue to tune in. But for now, let’s just see how the finale pans out, shall we?
Next Friday is the season finale. It seems Juliette is going to find out just who Nick truly is.
“Don’t forget that you can always catch up Grimm on NBC!”