Grimm ep2.05, “Good Shepherd”: Sure to get the Fundamentalists in a lather

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Grimm, Season 2, Episode 05, “Good Shepherd”

Written by: Dan E Fesman

Directed by: Steven DePaul

Airs Friday 9.00pm ET on NBC

It was as if a billion Texan voices cried out at the same time.

‘They did not just compare church goers to sheep!’

Oh yes they did. Grimm keeps adding to its bestiary (despite my fervent wish it wouldn’t because I’m the one who has to work out how to spell all those German names) although this week the writers stuck with the Blutbad as predator, which at least allowed Monro to socialise with one of his own, another reformed character. Cue a twelve steps type discussion along the lines of ‘how many months sober?’ I half expected the two of them to whip out their tokens and talk about that time they saw that girl dressed in *that* particular shade of red and it was only the fact their mentor picked up on the third ring that saved her from being found in small pieces in a dumpster the next day.

But back to the sheep. Appropriately enough, the reformed Blutbad (Jonathan Scarfe, beaming the fleshy smile of a TV evangelist)  is now ministering to a flock of sheep-wesen called Seelengut. The writers do not hesitate to point out that these particular Wesen 1) feel safe in groups 2) are easily led. So according to the world of Grimm, those God fearing people who hold bake sales and get all riled up about the word ‘vagina’ are sheeples. Well I knew that. I just didn’t expect to hear it expressed with such refreshing openness on a prime time TV show.

It’s fitfully amusing, the linkage between human personality types and the Wesen, if a little cliched and obvious. The Wesen-of-the-week story line was similarly cliched. The villain was pointed out to us with a large neon sign with the word ‘VILLAIN’ written upon it hanging over his head. Said villain is detected by Nick and Hank, by the usual means of clues dropping into their laps like ripe fruit. Said villain is despatched, but not before we discover that he has not only embezzled church funds (the rotter!) he has impregnated one of his congregation – this piece of information being delivered by means of a set up with all the subtlety and originality of a kick to the knee with a steel toed boot. But my main gripe about this episode was not about the lack of surprises, it’s that the writers skimmed over the one part of the story which made me sit up in my seat. A wolf-Wesen gets a sheep-Wesen pregnant? What, in the name of Darwin, would THAT turn out like???

We were never told. The mysteries of Wesen genetics remain obscure, much to my disappointment. What is clear is that much of the tension for the other story element – Nick’s battle to lead a normal life when his family heritage has destined him to hunt down Wesen wrongdoers, axe in hand – is going to derive from his love life. His partner Hank is now one of the gang and Monro seems to have accepted his role as chief cultural adviser on all things Wesen. That leaves Nick’s relationship with Juliette as the motor for tension and the writers seem to have finally decided that Bitsie Tulloch is allowed off the leash, giving her a bar scene in which she wore the kind of tiny red play suit that would make the average Blutbad bare more than just his fangs. But although Juliette is beginning to decide that jumping in the sack with Nick might not be a bad idea, he now has a rival. Nick’s boss Renard, who in Wesen life is a prince, brought Juliette round with a kiss and now it seems that he is the one who has fallen under a spell. As Renard is a man who likes to get his own way we can expect he won’t give up on the object of his desire without a fight.

– Cath Murphy

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