Grimm "La Llorona" Review: The Not-So-Friendly Ghost

Grimm S02E09 "La Llorona"

Mainstream culture has recently discovered Mexican bogeyman La Llorona, as it seems she’s been showing up everywhere from amusement parks to movies to comics to Friday’s creepy Halloween episode of Grimm. So grab your Spanish dictionary and get ready for ghosts!

It was All Hallow's Eve and a father/son fishing trip fell apart when a weeping woman in white tried to drown herself near the pier. First she vanished before Papa Fisherman could reach her, then re-appeared while he floundered, and she took off with his son in tow. The distraught father called the Portland PD and Juliette stepped in to translate, as he only spoke Spanish. Juliette also had to deal with a mysterious Spanish-speaking woman, who warned the police the kidnapper was La Llorona, a Mexican ghost. She also had uncanny insight into the cat-scratch magic that affected Juliette, though in typical Juliette fashion, Juliette did not listen.

Back at the station a Wesen jaguar/detective from New Mexico named Valentina flew in with the news that this was not the first time the kidnapper had struck. This Weeping Woman had killed kids across the U.S. and the M.O. was always the same: Kidnap two boys and one girl and drown them right before midnight on Halloween. Also Renard had a hush-hush conversation on the phone concerning that mysterious plot he’s involved with; and he discovered Adalind was in Vienna while a little girl was taken by Llorona.

Just as Nick and Hank began to make progress on the case, Renard revealed that Detective Valentina was really an ex-detective who'd been discharged after becoming obsessed with Llorona, and who was now in the custody of the FBI. A trip to the Grimm trailer convinced Hank and Nick of the urgency of stopping Llorona, and they busted Valentina out after a third kid was taken. After tracking the creature down, they saved the kids and Nick tackled the Weeper into the water, only to see her transform and vanish. The children of Portland were safe once again... at least, until next Halloween.

Mwahahahahaha!

Meanwhile, in an extremely silly B-plot, Monroe loved Halloween and scared some punks.

This was a fairly standalone holiday episode, and Grimm did a nice job of upping the creepy factor with Llorona, though not such a great one rounding up actors who can convincingly speak Spanish. It should also come as no surprise that Juliette is now boring in two languages; I mean, if someone was immediately able to tell you that you’d been ill, lost your memory, and ended up torn between two men, wouldn’t you be a teensy bit curious? Or willing to indulge the witch-woman to ask for a bit more information?

But despite the weird phone and tablet product placement (Nick has a smartphone and an e-reader but can’t Google Translate what the Grimm book says?), "La Llorona" was a pretty decent episode of Grimm, closer to the Wesen-of-the-week plots from first season than anything we’ve seen in second. It even managed to make you feel bad for the murderous Llorona, trying to atone for the unforgivable act of drowning her children, haunted by their spirits each Halloween.

"La Llorona" was fun, but after last week's episode dangled an Adalind/Ro-Bro team-up, I wish there'd been more mythology or Royal developments. The enjoyable, frenetic flood of information that began the season has slowed considerably, and while Season 2's episodes have been paced better than those of Season 1, “La Llorona” left me hoping that the next episode will throw us back into the maelstrom of the Wesen/Royal/Grimm conflict.

It also left me hoping that Rosalee will be returning soon. At this point she’s been gone for weeks with her Aunt, and without her Grimm's Monroe plots have devolved into pointless fluff, devoid of the main troubles Nick is going through. This is also a side effect of Hank being Nick’s new backup—a role that up until now was Monroe’s. I like Hank, but if we as an audience have to choose between Hank being Nick’s Guy Friday and Monroe being Nick's Guy Friday, Monroe’s the winner, hands down. Team Grimm is at its strongest when Monroe is around, so here’s hoping that next week will bring us a more connected Monroe story.


QUESTIONS:

– What is up with that intern? Could he actually be a spy for the Royals? A Wesen?

– Was the Spanish-speaking woman who knew about Juliette’s problems a Hexenbiest?

– What department are Nick and Hank in? I thought it was homicide, but they also investigate missing kids?

– Was Llorona a ghost, a Wesen, or both?

– Along those lines, are there supernatural creatures that aren’t Wesen?

– Why can’t Captain Renard think of a reason to get Juliette to come with him to the spice shop to get that obsessions spell cured? Couldn’t he buy another potion to wipe her mind with afterward?

– When will Rosalee return?

Comments (57)
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Did no one even notice the constant loud background music in almost every single scene? It was so annoying!! Maybe this was just a problem on CTV airing the show in Canada? They music was so loud and unnatural as to almost drown out the dialogue. Any other Canadian viewers notice this? Or was this not a problem anywhere else?
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I don't think ALL their cases are Wesen-related, it's just that we're just SHOWN the ones that are. Time moves at the speed of plot, there's no telling how many cases they work through pr. week, vs. how many are of the supernatural persuasion.

As for Nick and Hank working homicides, I think they're actually working "Major crimes" or some such, as they were put on the case of the missing accountant who supposedly stole the church's money just a few ep's back - long before they knew it was a homicide.

So murder, grand theft, missing persons - it's all in their portfolio.
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Being Mexican, I can say i LOVED this episode... ive grown up listening to La Llorona stories, and there are MAAAANY versions, and this show somehow managed to convine them all in an understandable way that still makes sense in the Grimmverse. Also watching Mexican actors in American series is nice, and the fact that here character was a Balam (which is mayan for jaguar) AND was jaguarbased.... was just amazing kuddos for the details...consider me a happy Mexican
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I like the idea that other supernatural creatures/legens (not just those from fairytales) are being incorporated into the show...I hope this continues.
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Not sure if the Rosalee question is supposed to be answered within the confines of the show, but the actress who plays her is on maternity leave, hence her absence.
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Do we know if she's had her baby yet?
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yes... as far as i know it's a beautiful baby boy and she is already back with the Grimm crew... i just don't know what episode they are filming about now. it would be cool to know exactly in which episode she returns... i really miss her (she was always the level headed one when Monroe freaked out and it was too funny)
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I accepted the ghost story since it's Halloween week. Rosalee will hopefully return after she's recovered from having her baby IRL. Juliette seems to be returning to her bitter pre-amesia self by blowing off the neighbor that's eager to help her, OR it was her sub-conscious resenting someone offering to prevent her from hooking up with Renard.
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I'm thinking Juliette snapped because, for the first time, someone else noticed how she felt. Juliette could no longer dismiss it as her own idea. Someone noticed, it was real.
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i thought the reason renard didnt want to bring juliette to the shop because monroe would recognise her... but then i realised that renard wouldnt know that. i want him to go back to the shop and tell monroe her name and description / bring herwwith him... monroe stops b-plotting and tells nick about it : **** goes down.



or renard threatens monroe... or monroe recognises him later on



this episode did creep me out a bit, worth the watch... i want more malicious adalind! hell hath no fury like a scorned hexenbiest it seems.



and yeah! more monroe. and juliette, why arent you questioning that pseudo renard kiss... why arent you curious about anything renardy? what?
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This was a pretty good episode. Of course, there was just too much of Juliette for me, simply because I'm so sick of her whining and simpy looks & actions. Also, what is the deal with that absolutely ridiculous intern? If he's there for comic relief, they have sorely failed. He's just irritating and unnecessary. Needs to go back to the Bones set from whence he came. More Monroe. More Monroe and Rosalee. More Monroe and Nick.
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Decent episode all around. Except yes, arguably Juliette might be the dumbest Veterinarian alive.



?'s

Who knows, it seems like they are keeping him around. So it may very well be some type of plant. However, previews of next week lead us to believe that there is going to be another grimm, so maybe it has something to do with that.

Perhaps, but I doubt it. I think she just might be a regular witch, if there are those in their world. But seriously, if someone comes up to you and cold reads the last few months of life, you might want to at least listen to her. But hopefully, when things start to get tense she can go back.

I think it might depend on the department. Portland is a big city probably has around 1000 officers. I would imagine detectives are split up into drugs, property crimes, and serious people crimes, such as homicide, child abuse, kidnapping etc. Who knows, he somehow keeps getting all the wesen crimes.

Maybe she is a ghost Wesen.

Perhaps, I think they got plenty of Wesen to deal with before they have to start inventing new things for him to deal with.

Well if they did that it wouldn't be that much drama. Renard has to be revealed at some point, this potential love triangle of Nick, Renard and Juliette is the perfect way to go about that. And it finally gives something for Juliette to do other than walk around looking confused all the time.

Hopefully soon.
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Ugh, again so many reasons I can't take Juliette anymore. For a woman of science, she suffers from a deplorable and unforgivable lack of curiosity. And if you're going to hire an actress with the slightly crazy eyes and unusual face, give her character a personality to go with it.

Let's just exchange Juliette for Valentina - her snarling blue panther was awesome and every second she was on screen, you felt she was ready to absolutely pounce. Hope we see her again, Nick could probably use her help.

And give Monroe and Rosalee their own spin-off!! Totally can't get enough of Monroe's idiosyncracies - maybe he and Rosalee could do a decorating show for the holidays! A vlog for vesen! lol
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Not specific to this episode, but I am a bit bothered by how EVERY case that comes Nick's way is supernatural, now that he knows he his a Grimm. Will he re-examine any previous cases? Will he ever get a normal case? Without Wesen, would the crime rate plummet?



It was nice to see Juliet show a least a hint of emotion.
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Are you implying all crimes are committed by Wesen? That's profiling.
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no... he just states the obvious...out of more than 30 cases only one crime out there was committed by humans as far as i know... it`s starting to bother me too... our specie is not that innocent either...anyway, it`s weird



i feel they need to show more innocent wessen and more guilty humans to make things more balanced
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I had the same thought re- Hank/Nick's police department. They've previously also investigated a robbery having nothing to do with a homicide as well. Just rolled my eyes and went with it though b/c I <3 Grimm!



Thought the Monroe plotline was cute, and probably conceived just to deliver the punchline at the end. Even though we saw it coming a mile away, I laughed when he Wesened-out on those obnoxious kids. It was so Addams Family.
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But will the intern desapears from the serie Bones? Or will he continues both?

If there is another Grimm next week it should be Nick's mother?
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Maybe the intern is the other Grimm from next weeks episode. Let's hope so.
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Well, Mexico thanks for a creepy story. I kinda enjoyed this story.

I wish they would just wrap up the Juliette story and show us a royal one. Does Juliette even brink??!.

When will Monroe visit Nick at the precint? i just want him to realise Renard is different and clue Nick in.
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This was good to me as a Halloween and filler episode. It definitely kept me interested the whole time. I too miss the Nick/Monroe dynamic, but Hank is still a valuable asset to me.
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is it just me or this episode they might have just given away how they are going to solve the love curse problem??? I mean, the Spanish woman kind of told Juliette what was wrong with her and what she needed to do to solve the problem... choose/ commit to one of the men (hopefully Nick as true love beats curse induced obsession).

Also, the actress playing juliette said there will be a pretty hot bed scene (they even needed a stunt coordinator for that) but she refused to say with whom... maybe that's how she will choose (unless it's someone's dream again in which case i might stop watching this whole mess altogether).

still, if they really end up breaking the curse like that, so smoothly without having anyone know about anyone else, i'd laugh so hard for a whole day...

anyone else thinks this might be a possibility?
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Your last paragraph about Monroe being relegated to B plots and comic relief, and not working with Nick anymore is spot on. This has me worried too. I totally agree with your comment that although I like Hank, I would choose a Monroe/Nick partnership any day. Can't the writers mix it up a bit more, and have the three of them working together sometimes, only Monroe and Nick other times, etc.? It's not rocket science people! Monroe is your best asset...use him!
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Absolutely - use Monroe as often as possible...and then more!!
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"Why can't Captain Renard think of a reason to get Juliette to come with him to the spice shop to get that obsessions spell cured?"



Because Renard can't share a car ride with Juliette without thinking of the pitter-patter of tiny half hexenbiest/half royal feet running through their home. He's like a teenage boy with a first crush. I'm surprised Nick hasn't noticed yet.
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If the intern was a Wesen then Nick would have seen it.



NIck and Hank are probably just general detectives and work any case that comes up. Much like the detectives in the old Dragnet series.



Renard isn't suppose to be that close to Juliette and would also have to reveal his problem to Juliette. And although he might try to go to the shop Monroe knows Juliette and would likely not sell a mind-wiping spell, especially when it was such a spell that got her into the problem in the first place.



From the Wikipedia page for Bree Turner (Rosalee):

"[Her and her husband's] son, Dean, was born on September 12, 2012."

So it's a recent pregnancy that's kept her off the show. But I expect she'll be back.

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Joe Friday on "Dragnet" seemed to move from department to department. On the beginning of a show he'd say something like "April 13th. My partner and I were working robbery."



I don't think detectives normally move around that much; the better ones usually gravitate towards homicide and stay there if they can do the job, but "Dragnet" was about telling a lot of different detective stories.
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Nick doesn't notice Wesen unless they become emotionally charged.
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Exactly. He hasn't even noticed Renard yet.
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If this hadn't been a Halloween themed episode, I would have given it thumbs down. The plot was too vague for a regular episode. A ghoul that is not a wesen? If that's how they want to stretch the ground rules set by the show's mythology, then what's next? Soon they can come up with anything, like Wesen from outer space or Norse gods to fight. Then La Llorona didn't even get caught, which left us with an open ending, an enigma without any explanation. They could have at least said it as a Wesen similar to Hexenbiests, with a Wesen side that can be destroyed, or maybe a Wesen which has turned crazy as a result of eating too many mystery potions. And what about that woman who mysteriously knew about Juliette's past, without any explanation why? They could have explained that too, saying that the woman was a Wesen with extensive knowledge in toxins. And what about Valentina. Was there any point in having her be a Wesen? We didn't even find out what the special characteristics of her kind are, if it played any part in her being obsessed about the case or a being good cop. Did it bring anything to the story except that she got to have that "oh, you're a Grimm, please don't kill me" moment with Nick.

I'll give this episode a pass simply because it was a special Halloween themed one. The most exiting thing about it was the one phone call Renard made (which I didn't even full understand), because it was the only thing that moved the back story a little forward.

The intern is definitely part of the future story. And most likely a Wesen too. Or then he'll accidentally stumble upon Nick's secret and becomes an accident prone sidekick to him.
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i also believe the inter is important , im hoping hes evil and thast why he acts so clumsy, to give false security
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la llorona is a latin american legend, we all have slightly diferent versions of it in diferent countries , and i think some other non spanish speaking coutries also have something alike, sooo its not mexican
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Actually, if you research the legend, the earliest version involves Cortez, who was only in Mexico. Other Latin American countries have adopted it, but all indications are that it started in Mexico.
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I guess a department that only has 1 translator also has to have homicide work SVU cases from time to time.
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To be fair, this show is set in the Pacific Northwest where there are not as many Spanish-speaking people as in other parts of the country. Round these parts most of the people with Spanish names are Filipino.
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this one got me crying a little
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They specifically said La Llorona wasn't a Wesen, so I'd have to say that it isn't a Wesen.



I guess I found the hard part to believe that absolutely no one in the department spoke Spanish except for one translator. Nobody on the PD in Portland took high school Spanish? Or is Portland's Spanish population just that small? Seemed like just a reason to shoehorn in Juliette so she could get some big revelations from the conveniently placed Pilar/Spanish woman.
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All I want to say it two things.



1. REALLY enjoyed this episode.

2. The actress who portrays Juliette can speak Spanish SOOOOO well! However, this is no surprise because apparently she grew up in a few Spanish-speaking countries growing up.
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I'm wondering why Nick and Hank were so shocked to discover a Wesen cop...at the very least, Nick himself has knowingly encountered a Wesen arson investigator.
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actually i felt only Hank was surprised... and knowing that wessen are prone to stronger emotional responses such as anger or violence it would make them less fit for this kind of jobs
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and a wesen prison guard
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I believe the actress who plays Rosalee just had a baby which explains her absence for the past few episodes (it also explains why she was always wearing baggy sweaters and being shot from the neck up). Hopefully she'll be back soon, but until then, there's probably not much the writers can do.



The actor who plays the intern had a fairly large role on 'Bones' so I have to think that he'll serve some greater purpose... hopefully soon because as is, he sticks out like a sore thumb.



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"What department are Nick and Hank in? I thought it was homicide, but they also investigate missing kids?"

I thought about this early in the episode as well, and all I can come up with is that maybe the Portland PD isn't big enough to have a bunch of detectives in different departments, so they have one general group of detectives and while they focus mostly on homicides, they also work on missing persons as well if needed. Or, you know, the show writers didn't care.

The episode was okay, fairly standard, nothing too interesting. Monroe's love for Halloween was cute, but revealing himself to the kids was really obvious really quickly... although I may want to rephrase that.
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Portland has half a million people, so they surely have homicide detectives. Maybe Nick and Hank are Major Crimes (or maybe the show writers don't care).
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One, I actually liked this episode. There was a nice chill factor, a tragic ghost killing children. Made me shudder.

Two, this episode sucked. You said it, there was no development where we want it - Royals, Adalind, the Renard-Juliette tangle, Rosalee, nada. Juliette was being a bimbo, Nick let go of la Llorona just because she changed her face back to pretty. Nick-Mummy wouldn't have been bothered such trifles. For how long do Grimms exist, anyway? Surely, they learned their trade way before the Age of Chivalry.
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I watched the Halloween episode of Grimm to see whether or not I should give it a try again....and wow....Grimm has become a lot better. I dropped the show after the 12th or 13th episode of Grimm. (This is what happens when you sometimes quit on shows early...they just pile up as shows to catch up on...and the list starts to increase)
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Yeah, it started to get better around that time. Towards the end of the first season and the beginning of the second, they put less emphasis on the case of the week and more on the wesen world and the characters. But lately I think there's been too much of the case of the week and not enough about the other stuff.
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Sorry but I didn't like this episode, it stank of chees(e)y. The all-knowing-elder-grandma-lady-figure? please. Ghosts? burrghhh. Keep it to Wesen and keep it clean, where are the answers we were waiting for? The story sadly isn't moving forward. I like Monroe though but it was totally obvious what he was going to do with those kids, I think everyone here would agree they saw through the plot from miles away (also with the ghost + the wesen-detective, obviously it was either her own kids that were taken away or indeed as it turns out, her sister's). This show is going downhill, unfortunately. Because I still like the characters and am still invested in some of them, I will probably keep on watching.
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As much as i like Grimm, i feel the show has not been as good as last year due to Monroe no longer being Nick's sidekick. Actually its worse than that, because he isn't even part of the cases or helps Nick with information.

Seeing how almost everyone agrees Monroe was one of the best part of season 1, i just can't understand the producers decision to throw him off the road to the land of silly B-plots nobody cares about.
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Agreed. Hank may be the official partner, but the Nick/Monroe scenes were always better, and Monroe as the Rosalee stand-in (until she has her baby and returns) is just a holding action. Might as well put her in scenes with Juliette and we can get all the boring in one place.
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I couldn't disagreemore: Monroe has bee running Rosalee's shop, dating Rosalee and enjoying his Halloween season like no one business!

He's had scenes with Hank, Renard and Nick's mother he wouldn't even have otherwise and he remain as fundametal, if not more, to the grimm myth arc as ever.
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That intern is either the worst intern in the history of interns or the worst spy in the history of spies. I don't understand him. I like having him there though, because that guy plays the intern on Bones that I call "the puppy" because he's adorable and I never bothered to learn any of the interns' names other than nigel murray.

I don't think she's a hexenbiest, just a bruja of some kind. I hope she barges into Juliette's house next week and explains some shit to that girl.

The kidnapping case turned into a serial killer case, so it kind of turned out to be homicide.

They seemingly wanted to imply that she was a ghost, but I think the show would be better served if it just sticks to wesen. Otherwise it'll turn into Supernatural.

Would you go to a spice shop with a dude you don't really know who you're inexplicably attracted to? I sure as hell wouldn't, no matter what he said about it. And even if I went, you wouldn't be able to get me to eat or drink anything. Plus if he took her to the spice shop then Monroe would know something was up, so it wouldn't work well for the rest of the plot anyway.

Who cares. She'll come back when she comes back.
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i think this was a Halloween episode so that's the only reason why they ventured outside of the wessen realm... so we should be safe. Anyway it can't turn into Supernatural as the atmosphere of this show is too different (in Supernatural all creatures were bad and the boys just wanted to kill them, here they are more like humans, some good some bad and the "boys" just want to do the right thing.)



About the spice shop, Renard doesn't know yet that Juliette has the same problem as he has... so how would he go up to a person who barely knows him nor cares about him and tell her that she need to go with him to a place because he's been cursed to obsess about her? I'd freak out for sure. He needs to find a damn good lie to get her there and fool her into helping him and that still wouldn't work because for the antidote to work they need information about her too (and they are missing the key element... her feelings about Renard)...
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Who would I rather go to a spice shop with than a guy I want to know better & am very attracted to? Isn't that how people get to know each other? As for eating and drinking something at the spice shop I'm a little baffled. Ever tried a free sample at Starbucks?
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I'm pretty sure that most people *would* go to a spice shop with someone they're very attracted to.

I agree about the ghosts. The show should stick to wesen.
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Interesting that you compared it to Supernatural, the pilot for Supernatural had the brothers fighting the Woman in White which is what La Llorona is sometimes known as.
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Ya, I know. The chick from Life played the ghost. I miss when Supernatural was new and good.
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