NBC’s GRIMM is a new drama series inspired by The Brother’s Grimm classic fairy tales. The series, written and jointly created by Stephen Carpenter, David Greenwalt, and Jim Kouf stars David Giuntoli,Russell Hornsby, Silas Weir Mitchell, Reggie Lee, and Sasha Roiz. Homicide detective Nick Burkhardt (Giuntoli) finds out that he is from a long line of criminal profilers known as “Grimms.” He quickly finds that it is his destiny to maintain the balance between humanity and the mythological creatures of the world. In this episode, Nick and Hank investigates an explosion at Hap’s (Brad William Henke) home; and Monroe is visited by characters from his troubled past.
“Little Pig, little pig, let me in!”
Said the wolf to the pig.
“Not by the hair of my chinny, chin, chin!” Said the Pig to the Wolf.
The story of the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf appears in many different versions, depending on who is telling the tale. There’s an old English version of the tale, The Story of the Three Little Pigs; The Three Little Pigs; The Fox and the Pixies; and The Fox and the Geese. An African American version of the tale, The Awful Fate of Mr. Wolf, by Joel Chandler Harris; a couple of U.S. States has its own version of the tale–Virginia, Little Pig and Wolf ; and North Carolina, How Come the Pigs Can See the Wind? Even Italy has its own unique version of the tale titled The Three Goslings (Ashliman, 2008).
The original version of the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf written by Jame Orchard Halliwell-Phillipps, first appeared in the book The Nursery Rhymes of England (1886). The well-known version of the tale was sourced from the Halliwell-Phillipps book by Joseph Jacobs titled English Fairy Tales (1890). (Ashliman, 2008). All the tales are different, and are yet the same. Considered as the “guardians of the fairy tale,” the brothers Grimm also collected this tale as a method to preserve German folklore, 210 in all, collected from the stories told by women, young and old (O’Neill, 1999).
History lesson over, let’s get into NBC’s most brilliant episode of the series thus far – Three Bad Wolves - Caution: *spoilers below*
What does a shake-weight, pork, peppermint Schnapps, and cigarettes have in common? A Blutbaden by the name of Hap Locene (Henke). Hap was all set to get in his shake-weight workout when it suddenly goes flying out to the window. Lucky for him, the accidental toss saved his life–for the time being. I must say that Hap is one of the most animated characters, beside Monroe, to have ever been part of the series. He’s funny, charismatic, and extremely likable. But someone is out to get him–just when he is retrieving his shake-weight, his house explodes. He just stands there daze and confused. But get this…he does not die. Up until this point, someone always died just before opening show credits. Caught me off guard. In fact, the entire episode was full of peculiar twists and turns, so much so if you, dear reader wasn’t an initial fan of the show, I suggest you stop reading now and head on over to GRIMM’s NBC website. Go on…I’ll be here when you get back.
Okay, let’s discuss last night’s episode. In the immediate a.m., the police are out and investigating the explosion. Nick and Hank are questioning Hap about the explosion–if he had any bomb making material that they should be aware about. Hap was too busy worrying about hisXena Warrior Princess comic being destroyed. Of course, Hap didn’t have any bomb materials at his home and he was going on about all the things he’d lost in the explosion. At the same time, for a split second, Nick sees him morph into a Blutbad (he’s getting pretty good at it), and asked if he had any family, and to call them. He had no one to call–his brother died about a month ago–in a similar explosion. While the detectives head back to the station, a woman pulls up on her motorcycle and sniffs around Hap’s burned down home. Instantly, I knew she was a female Blutbad–she finds that the home’s gas line was broken. She leaves as quickly as she arrived.
At the station, Hap’s on the phone with someone asking if he could stay with them until he could “get back on his feet,” then quickly hangs up the phone saying “gotta go man, they all up in my grill!” It was Nick that approached Hap asking if he found someone to stay with? He said he called someone. Meantime, he was asked if there was someone who wanted him dead, he began rattling off about owing a few people money, but no one he knew wanted him dead. And why would they? Hap is awesome! He knows how to have a good time and always good to his friends.
I was as suprised as Det. Nick to see Monroe show up at the station to pick-up Hap. Nick pulls him to the side and asks how did he know Hap. Monroe obviously had an exciting past that he works tremendously hard to keep the wolf in him at bay. He and Hap went through some sort of treatment program together a few years ago and as always, Nick asks Monroe to do him another favor and keep an eye on Hap. He was going to say “no”–until Hap began to talk about what they went through together as buds–Monroe agreed and hastily hustled Hap out the door. Since Hap is a Blutbaden, he called in a solid to a friend, who happened to be the fantastic Monroe (Silas Weir Mitchell), and I was happy to see more of him in this episode, than being used as Nick’s “fetch it” guy.
Later, Nick and Hank speak with the arson investigator Lt. Orson (Daniel Roebuck) about what was the cause of the explosion at Hap’s place. He narrowed it down to the broken gas line and mentioned that there could have been many things that would have caused the house to explode due to it being so poorly kept. Nick mentioned that Hap’s brother died in the same type of explosion some time ago. Admitting that it was a strange coincidnece and that he also investigated that explosion as well and found nothing out of the ordinary. He even showed them the images collected from the home. Of course the “insurance” as a motivation for murder was mentioned, and being good detectives–Nick wants to speak with Hap about the insurance claim; Hank goes to contact the insurance company.
“Never piss off a woman with claws!” For Nick, it’s a lesson hard won. Before he can get out of his car, he is pulled out through the window by–you guessed it, the female Blutbat, Angelina (Jamie Ray Newman). She not only knows Nick to be a Grimm, but she is also Hap’s sister and…Monroe’s ex-girlfriend–and a bad influence. After a bit of a scuffle, they go in to discuss what all is going on and Angelina is wanting to tear into Nick–it’s personal for her because Nick, being a Grimm in a history of Grimm’s killed many Blutbaden’s in their history. Hap, just now realizing Nick is indeed a Grimm, makes the comment “He’s a Grimm and a cop…isn’t that somehow illegal?” Love this dude!
When Nick realizes that Angelina could be the beneficiary if Hap was killed, he grew even more suspicious of her. He wonder’s if she had anything to do with the fire. Monroe steps in and tell’s Nick that she is a Blutbaden–”we don’t kill our own kind.” Maybe not, but she still has a thing for Monroe and soon after Nick leaves, she temps him to go out with her and run in the woods. Monroe, fighting with his better judgement–decides to go, leaving Hap sleeping on the couch. They chase though the woods, snarling, and growling at each other. Monroe catches her and tosses her to the ground and they, ahem. Well, do what wolves do…thereafter, sink their fangs into some rabbit.
Too bad they went out because there was a knock at the door, and Hap unknowingly opens the door and was greeted by a man-pig, holding a pistol–Hap get’s three bullets to the chest, and then one to the head. This was a sad moment for me. I adored Hap. I was hoping to see more of him in the show. Alas, as in every Grimm tale, someone has to die.
In the Grimm classic tales, you remember that at the end the little pigs trick and capture the wolf–throwhim in a huge pot and cooks him for supper? Well, there is more to the arson investigator than Nick had imagine. Lt. Orson is a Bauerschwein, a pig-like man creature with a history’s old grudge against Blutbadens. Nick finds out that Angelina’s brothers were murdered soon one after the other–and Lt. Orson’s brothers were killed as well. Nick finds out that Angelina and her brothers killed Lt. Orson’s two brothers–as they have always done in the stories. The tides are turned here, this is the first time in the history of Grimm, that a pig or Bauerschwein, went after and killed Blutbadens–wolves. In the “real world” both cases constitutes as murder.
Angelina, after finding out from Monroe that Nick was in her house, and that a Bauerschwein had killed her brother she was furious. Against Monroe’s wishes, she heads to her house, and while inside, she catches the scent, or print, of a pig. The same print she had smelled while being interrogated by Hank at the station. She knew who she had to find–and she went after him even if it meant she had to go back to the station to kill him there. And she did. Orson wasn’t there, but before she could find out exactly where he lived, she was interrupted by one of the officers at the station. When he did not tell here where Orson lived and tried to bar her from leaving. She attacked and threw the officer over Orson’s desk. Let me tell you, the girl can swing.
Nick visits the home of Lt. Orson and did not find him straight away–he was resting in a mud bath to help him calm down and think things through. Orson was explaining to Nick that this isn’t the same as murder and that Bauerschwein’s have been killed for centuries by Blutbadens. This was the first time that the tides were changed. But before they could go into it deeper, Orson sensed Angelina was in his home. He reaches for his gun but Angelina was already on top of him, going for his throat. Nick intervened and hits her in the nerve cluster–he found this out after reading one of his aunt’s books about the Blutbaden, in case he had to kill Angelina–this startles her for a moment, just enough time for Orson to shoot–Nick prevents him from firing the fatal shot–she had already gotten away, leaving only a trail of blood.
Orson is taken to the hospital. After his wounds heal, to prison. Later, Nick phones Monroe to tell him that Angelina is wanted for murder and he needed Monroe to help find her.
Monroe told Nick to just leave it, just let it go knowing she would never be found. He sat at his computer, looking at photo’s of himself, Angelina, and Hap–when they were happy together. He hears something outside and then goes to his front porch. He finds a family portrait of Angelina and Hap when they were kids. In the distance, he hears someone, something–maybe Angelina–howling.
Now, for those of you who still may be slightly skeptical of the show–don’t be. The show is beyond happy endings, those melancholy after thoughts, and perplexing themes. Grimm isn’t your usual crime drama. It has a little bit of everything awesome in it. NBC’s GRIMM has the potential for being the most inventive television series I have seen in a long time.
♦ Ashliman, D. L. (2008, November 23). Three little pigs and other folktales of aarne-thompson-uther type 124. Retrieved from http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/type0124.html
♦ O’Neill, T. (1999). Guardians of the fairy tale: The brothers grimm. Retrieved from http://www.nationalgeographic.com/grimm/article.html
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