Grimm: Don't Fear the Reapers

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Grimm S01E19: “Leave It to Beavers”

Friday’s episode of Grimm was a grab bag of the best and worst the show has to offer as “Leave It to Beavers” combined series mythology with the regular monster-of-the-week plot to create an enjoyable, but unbalanced, episode.

We started with a face-off between two Wesen—an Eisbiber (a.k.a. the rodent guys who left Nick presents) and a mafia bridge troll whose Italian accent (it was Italian, right?) was awful to the point of being offensive. Acting: not always Grimm’s forte, ladies and gents.

Anyhow, Bad Accent killed the Eisbiber when he refused to pay any more protection money and another Eisbiber, Arnold, witnessed the murder. He called 911 but was nearly killed by Bad Accent, so he took off to hide with a friend—one of the Wesen who'd been showering Nick with gifts.

Nick and Monroe took to the woods to do some Grimm training, and Nick not only turned out to be a good shot (duh, cop), but also skilled at smashing a melon with a bat, which somehow impressed Monroe. We’re apparently supposed to spend the rest of the season pretending that Juliette never rejected Nick’s marriage proposal, as the two amicably butted heads over inviting Monroe to dinner, and Nick and Monroe panicked over what to tell Juliette about how they'd first met.

Nick and Hank got pulled into investigating the death of the Eisbiber, which led them to Bad Accent, one Mr. Salvatore (seriously?). The Godfather impressions grew thicker as the troll's henchmen lied for him, and Hank told Nick that they couldn't do anything until the witness surfaced. But Sal of the Atrocious Accent got antsy and hired the Reapers to send a message—by killing Nick.

Then came the very best part of the episode: Monroe and Nick had the cutest dinner ever as they awkwardly stumbled through just about every social interaction and almost let the Grimm cat out of the bag with regard to how they really met. The fun part was that they thought they were killing it, and bumped fists or exchanged grins every time Juliette looked away. Go Team Grimm!

The Eisbiber duo that'd been buttering Nick up wanted to take a stand, and asked Arnold to tell the police what he saw, a bravery that does not come easily to their kind. When they brought Nick to their Eisbiber lodge meeting, we saw the real fears these Wesen had as they elected to let Sal roam free rather than risk receiving a “message” from him. Shamed by the noble actions of his friends, Arnold did the right thing anyway and gave Nick the positive ID on Sal.

Then Reapers, plural, showed up to kill Nick, and beat Sal to...confuse us? Was the beating supposed to clue us in to the fact that they’re loose cannons? Loose cannons with terrible German and—taking a shot in the dark here—French accents? Anyhow, Reapers be crazy, they let Sal get arrested, followed Nick and Arnold back to the lodge, and were disappointingly easy to defeat as Nick decapitated one and shot the other. Monroe encouraged Nick to lop off both heads, and together they sent Reaper HQ a message: "This the best you got?"

Even with its flaws this episode was really entertaining. I was on the edge of my seat during the Eisbiber murder and laughing at the bumbling Monroe and Nick dinner party. Setting the lack of drama between Nick and Juliette aside, the main problem with the episode was that it involved unspeakably horrible bad-guy acting. What could have been a thoroughly solid hour of TV dipped into cringe-worthy unwatchableness whenever Sal or the Reapers appeared on-screen, causing "Leave It to Beavers" to teeter back and forth between fun and awful like a Wesen-loving seesaw. An accent does not a good actor make, and after the wonderful Edgar (Edgar I also still mourn you!) I expected better, Grimm.

But the real talking point here is Nick’s killing of the Reapers. Nick is behaving in ways perfect for a Grimm but incompatible for a cop, and I can’t help but wonder if his embracing the Grimm side is a bad thing. After all, the Wesen were terrified of Sal sending a message—is Nick doing the same, setting him down the road to becoming one of the bad Grimm? Even with the mainly harmless Eisbibers there was a voice advocating for striking back, now that they had their “own” Grimm, and Edgar’s last words are beginning to ring clear: The oppressed definitely have the potential to become the next oppressors.

Questions:

– Can Nick reconcile being a Grimm with being a policeman?

– Will Juliette leave Nick, given that he's obviously still keeping secrets from her?

– Will Nick return to his plan of having Monroe Blutbad out in front of Juliette in an attempt to tell her the truth?

– Will we see Adalind again in these three remaining episodes?

– Can we nominate Nick/Monroe as everyone’s favorite couple after Rosalee/Monroe? Also, can we get more fist bumps? I love their fist bumps.

– Should Nick really be taunting the ancient organization sworn to kill him? Is he getting too cocky?

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