Author Archives: eyeofthekat

grimm recapping–let your hair down

written by Sara Goldfinger & Naren Shankar

A pair of backpackers headed for Shining Lake are waylaid by paranoid pot grower Delmar Blake, who thinks they’re cops and brings them back to his camp. The terrified couple—they own a dog-wash called “Hair of the Dog”—are begging for their lives when some … thing … attacks Delmar and strangles him. The hikers get free and run. The next day Hank and Nick show up, along with the DEA. They’ve been trying to nail Delmar for three years. They knew he was moving drugs but they had no idea he had three million dollars in marijuana plants in the woods.

And the plants are still there, but all of Delmar’s camping equipment and his food are missing. That’s just weird.

Nick takes a closer look at the crime scene and spots a teenage female blutbad. He gets a sample of her hair and some buckshot embedded in a tree.

Hank and Nick pay a visit to the backpacker couple, who live in a terrific house. (Portland is a place where working class people can still buy nice houses; check out the “houses for sale” on Portland CraigsList.)

The couple are still shaken by their ordeal—the boyfriend has a bandage on his head from where Delmar hit him with the butt of a shotgun—but tell the cops that whatever was in the woods saved their lives.

Back at headquarters, Hank and Nick show Captain Renard slides of the dead Delmar, who was clearly strangled by a very strong rope. (They don’t yet realize it was a plaited rope of hair, a la Tangled.)

Like the detectives, Capt. Renard is confused by what’s going on. If Delmar were killed by a rival drug dealer, the killer wouldn’t have left the plants. He tells the guys to keep him in the loop.

Delmar’s brothers arrive at the police station, demanding justice for their brother. Hank insists they show some ID before he’ll tell them anything and when he and Nick are satisfied they’re who they say they are, they all head for the morgue. Continue reading

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karloff vs. carrey–which “grinch” is best?

Theodor Seuss Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss) wrote How the Grinch Stole Christmas in 1957. Nine years later, it was adapted into a half-hour, animated special for television and it’s been running ever since. In 2000, Ron Howard teamed up with Jim Carrey to create a live-action version of the story, a big, colorful, noisy adaptation that ran for 104 minutes and made nearly $350 million worldwide. It was a huge success and yet… I prefer the original.

Here are five reasons why:

  1. Boris Karloff. Not only was he the voice of the animated Grinch, he also provided the narration. It was like having your grandfather read the story to you, a grandfather who was gifted at doing voices and whose own deep and resonant voice belied his age. (Karloff would die three years later at 81.) All due respect to Carrey, but an awful lot of the time, his Grinch sounded like Richard Nixon.
  2. The songs. Dr. Seuss wrote the lyrics for the songs and they were in rhyme, just like the rest of the tale. In the original animated adaptation, nothing was added to Seuss’ words because nothing needed to be added. And who can forget the signature song, “You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch?” sung by Thurl Ravenscroft.
  3. Thurl Ravenscroft is not credited on Grinch, a mistake that horrified Seuss and co-producer/director Chuck Jones, who took out an ad in Variety to publicize his performance. Thurl did a lot of work for Disney but he’s probably best known for being the voice of Tony the Tiger in Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes commercials. His voice was as indelibly imprinted on the material as Karloff’s.
  4. The simplicity. Ron Howard created his own version of Seuss’ classic story but it was very much his version and not Seuss’ version. Everything about the original version had to do with the meaning of Christmas and the simplicity of the message that Christmas is in our hearts and not about the presents. Howard’s version has the same message but it’s overblown and overdone and not simple.
  5. The subtlety and sweetness. In the animated version, little Cindy Lou Who is an adorable two-year-old with wide blue eyes. In the Howard version, she’s an annoying sitcom moppet played by Taylor Momsen, who would make a splash as Jenny in Gossip Girl seven years later. It was a whole different vibe.

Animated or live action—no Christmas season is complete without a viewing of one or the other. My choice is the original.

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grimm recapping: three bad wolves

Written by Naren Shandar & Sarah Gollinger

There’s a full moon out and a big guy named HAP is smoking and drinking and working out with a Shake-Weight (shades of the late, great John Candy’s “Johnny LaRue” character) when an over-enthusiastic shake sends the weight out the window of the geodesic dome where he lives. He’s outside retrieving the weight when his home blows up behind him, destroying his Iron Butterfly album and his comic book collection.

The next morning, as firefighters finish up at the scene, Nick and Hank arrive to talk to Hap who, under stress, reveals he’s a blutbad to Nick’s GRIMMvision. Note: the writers are really sloppy about day/night transitions on this show and this episode is one of the worst offenders so far.)

Hap tells the detectives that he can’t imagine anyone wanting to hurt him but does mention that his brother Rolf died in an explosion at his home some weeks earlier.

At the police station, Hap makes a call to a friend, asking if he can stay with him just until he gets back on his feet.

Hap reveals that he owes money to a lot of people for ill-considered business ventures (like a strip-mall creperie) and as Nick is getting the particulars, a mysterious motorcyclist pulls up to the remains of Hap’s house and takes a framed photo away.

Monroe shows up at the precinct to retrieve Hap (and he does not look happy). He tells Nick that he and Hap went through a treatment program a long time ago. Continue reading

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grimm recapping: danse macabre

Written by David Greenwalt & Jim Kouf

There’s a rave going on in Portland and Retchid Kat is the man of the hour, wearing a Donnie Darko-esque red cat head and spinning tunes as his fans chant and gyrate. But while this is going on, a high school string quartet is practicing for a performance with demanding music teacher Dr. Paul Lawson demanding they step it up. He’s particularly annoyed with Carter, who isn’t nearly as good as another student who was kicked out of school for fighting.

Later that night, Lawson leaves school and gets in his car, only to be devoured alive by rats.

The next day, the high school’s assistant principal, Grace Kaplan arrives at work and sees Dr. Lawson’s car. Since it’s unusual for anyone to be at the school before she is, Grace goes over to the car to take a look. What she sees is the chewed-up carcass of the school’s music teacher.

At home, Nick and Juliette have just discovered that their refrigerator isn’t working when Nick gets a call summoning him to the crime scene. Sgt. Wu is already there, telling him and Hank that neither the coroner nor Animal Control want to open the door to Lawson’s car before they sign off on it.

Hank really hates rats, and when the door is jimmied open, they pour out of Lawson’s car.

Later, Hank and Nick find some cages nearby with the logo of Geiger Pest Control on them. The detectives head for a really nice neighborhood in Portland where the four kids who play in the string quartet are gathered at Sarah’s home. Her mom, Mrs. Jessup, is a tightly wound socialite type who is not happy when one of the boys—Sarah’s boyfriend—brings up Roddy Geiger, the son of an exterminator. Mrs. Jessup tells the detectives that Roddy is a very disturbed boy and that they shouldn’t discuss him in front of the teens.

What do you bet “Roddy” is a sly reference to “Rowdy Roddy Piper?” which ties into the Pied Piper theme of the show? 

Hank and Nick track Roddy down to the property where he lives with his father in a trailer. The contrast with Sarah’s home could not be more different (or more heavy-handed—this is not a subtle show). Both Roddy and his dad are creatures known as “reinigen” and they recognize Nick as a Grimm. The old man resists arrest and is cuffed by Hank while Nick chases after Roddy. Both are hauled into police headquarters and questioned.

Roddy’s father doesn’t really have an alibi—he was in the woods catching rats—but Roddy does. He IS Retchid Kat and the promoter of the raves where he appears backs up his alibi.

Roddy’s released but his dad is held. Continue reading

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grimm recapping: lonelyhearts

A man’s hand shuts a door, locks it and pulls a lever.

A woman’s arm breaks a window and reaches out franticly.

A woman runs for her life onto a bridge, her point of view distorted by the gas she’s breathed. Inanimate objects seem to threaten her.

She’s so distraught and distracted she never even sees the car and walks right out in front of it.

The driver of the car (Leroy Kent) immediately runs to her aid and is very relieved to see she’s still breathing. A dark figure joins them and suggests that Leroy call 911. When Leroy returns to his car to make the call, the figure bends down. “Kiss me,” the dying woman begs, but instead the figure pinches off her air and smothers her with his hand.

When Leroy looks up, the figure is gone and the woman is still.

Hank and Nick are called to the scene. The woman has glass on her arms but not on her feet. She was barefoot, but can’t have run far.

Meanwhile, another dark figure arrives in Portland carrying a suitcase. He checks into a down-market hotel and makes a phone call. “It’s me,” he says in French. “I’ll call when it’s finished.”

Then he opens his suitcase and pulls out … a Grimm reaper blade.

Medical examiner Harper has a look at the dead woman, who has been identified by her fingerprints as FAITH COLLINS. Harper tells the detectives that she died of suffocation but there’s no sign of crushed lungs, which means it wasn’t a result of a car accident.

When the detectives consult with Captain Reynard, he looks at the info on Faith’s husband Ray and sees that the cops were called to the Collins house several times for spouse abuse.

Hank and Frank pay a visit to Ray Collins at his work place. He freely admits that he and his wife had an argument the night before. He’d come home hungry and she’d been too busy updating her “friends” on her life to cook. She took off around 10, he tells her, and he just waited for her to come back.

“She always comes back,” he tells them.

Not this time, Nick tells him, she’s dead.

Faith had a suspended license due to a DUI, so there’s a record of a cab picking her up a bar called the Blue Moon. There’s also an online post with a photograph attached. The photo is a gorgeous garden sanctuary, and when Nick and Hank track the location, it aliases to Bramble House Bed and Breakfast, where the cab dropped Faith off after picking her up at the bar.

Nick notices the owner’s car parked out front. It’s a cherries-out 1967 MGB roadster with a midnight blue paint job, a car coveted by collectors.

They catch the proprietor checking out a pair of newlyweds—the wife assumes Hank and Nick are a couple and tells them they’re going to love it—and he tells them he remembers Faith, who showed up around 11 without a suitcase. He tells them he showed her the garden and then she left.

The detectives ask to see the garden and when the owner, Billy Capra stands near a pool, Nick sees the reflection of a horned, goat-like creature. Meanwhile, Hank accidentally steps on a toad. He apologizes and the detectives leave. As soon as they are out of sight, Billy gobbles up the smashed toad.

Meanwhile, the Reaper shows up at HQ with a newspaper article about an off-duty detective shooting an assailant. He tells Officer Wu that he wants some information about the detective who shot his friend. (The detective is not named in the article but it was Nick, who shot the reaper to save his Aunt Marie in the pilot episode.)

Wu tells the Reaper to have a seat and then goes to Captain Renard. The captain tells Wu to send the man away after getting his name and phone number and address. Continue reading

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