Grimm, NBC’s fairy-tale cop drama, returns for its second season on Monday. But with a rapidly evolving mythology and a growing roster of monsters, there’s a lot to remember—so we’ve broken down the most important elements of Season 1 to better prepare you for the season premiere. So get your Grimm faces on and get ready for:
After his Aunt Marie was attacked, Portland detective Nick Burkhardt learned he was a Grimm, a guardian charged with protecting humanity from fairy-tale creatures that live hidden amongst us. As Marie was dying, Nick became able to see the creatures, called Wesen. Marie left him a trailer full of monster-fighting gear—including a mysterious key with a map etched onto it and tomes full of Grimm knowledge dating back to the original Grimm brothers. Nick found a friend and sort-of partner in a reformed Wesen named Monroe, who helped him adjust to his new status as a Grimm.
We learned that Nick’s boss, Portland Police Captain Renard, was actually a power-player in the Wesen world. Behind the plot to kill Aunt Marie, Renard set the Wesen witch Adalind on Hank, Nick’s detective partner, in order to blackmail Nick into giving up the Grimm Key.
Nick also had to contend with the Reapers, a Wesen organization dedicated to killing all Grimms, and the three Coins of Zakynthos—magical objects that inspired megalomaniac behavior in humans and Wesen alike. Successful in hiding the Coins, Nick discovered that the car accident that killed his parents many years before was no accident—and is somehow related to the Coins.
Warned by the Mellifer (bee-people Wesen) that something bad was coming, Nick struggled to free Hank from a love spell cast on him by Adalind and agonized over whether to tell his girlfriend, Juliette, about his Grimm calling. Nick gained another ally in Wesen apothecary owner Rosalee but then got pulled into Wesen politics as a hit man for the Verrat, the European Wesen law enforcement, and murdered his way through Portland in pursuit of the leader of European Wesen revolutionaries (who happened to be Rosalee’s ex-boyfriend). Representatives of the European Royal Wesen families also rolled in and told Renard to "get rid of the Grimm" meaning Nick. Renard replied by shooting those representatives in the head (Woolsey, I’ll always mourn you!).
Juliette turned down Nick’s marriage proposal and Nick, Rosalee, and Monroe freed Nick's cop-partner Hank from Adalind's spell by taking away her powers, a.k.a. they got Adalind to ingest Grimm blood by kissing Nick in the middle of a fight. Adalind used the last of her magic to cook up something nasty for Juliette, and Nick told Juliette about his double life. Juliette told Nick to get professional help and then Adalind’s curse kicked in and she fell into a coma.
In the Season 1 finale, Nick literally ran into Wesen assassin Akira Kimura while Kimura was trashing his house looking for the Coins. Just when it looked like Nick was going to get his ass handed to him, a mysterious Woman In Black showed up and kicked Kimura’s butt.
The season concluded with the reveal that the Woman In Black was Nick’s mother—yes, the mother Nick thought was dead—and the two have a whole mess o' catching up to do.
Phew, did you catch all that?
Allow me to provide a quick character index:
NICK: Both cop and Grimm, Nick’s our protagonist as well as our eyes and ears into the world. We love that Nick is uneasy with being the Wesen bogeyman and wants to be cop first, Grimm second—but between the Wesen, Verrat, Reapers, and Royals, patrolling Portland has gotten a lot trickier.
HANK: Nick’s cop partner. He the comedic relief, and we care because Hank’s going speedily, shotgun-clutchingingly bonkers after seeing a Wesen transform (human brains don’t really handle the concept of Wesen very well).
CAPTAIN RENARD: Nick and Hank’s boss. Renard is trying to simultaneously steal the Grimm Key, keep Nick in the dark about his true loyalties, and keep the Verrat/Reapers/Royals out of Portland.
MONROE: A reformed Blutbad (think "Big Bad Wolf"), Monroe keeps his Wesen aggression in check by channeling it into pilates, clock-making, and a vegetarian diet. Monroe is Nick’s guide to the Wesen world and has a huge crush on Rosalee (so far unrequited). Monroe is also your favorite Grimm character—don’t deny it, you know it’s true.
ROSALEE: A Fuchsbau (Wesen fox-person), she helps Monroe and Nick when they’re in need of a magical remedy. We love her sassiness and the confident way she took over her brother’s apothecary after his murder, though some clues left behind suggest he was into heavier stuff than just the odd bit of black-market drug-dealing.
JULIETTE: Nick’s girlfriend. Their relationship is petering out as a result of Nick’s double-life. She is now under Adalind’s spell, which so far has put her in a coma and given her crazy black demon eyes.
ADALIND: A Hexenbiest (Wesen witch-creature). Adalind was working for and sleeping with Captain Renard. At the end of Season 1, Adalind was powerless and rejected by Renard—who was also involved with Adalind’s mother—and she used the last of her potions to place Juliette under a mysterious spell in the season finale.
SERGEANT WU: A Portland police officer who does Hank and Nick’s grunt work and spent a good portion of Season 1 eating office supplies due to a Hexenbiest curse.
REAPERS: A group of Wesen dedicated to the eradication of Grimms. They're bad dudes who fight with scythes and at one point roughed up Monroe, who is your favorite character (don’t deny it).
THE VERRAT: An organization of European Wesen comprised of the Seven Royal families who work as law enforcers, brutally cutting down Wesen who defy them. The Verrat pose a real threat to everyone in Portland.
THE SEVEN ROYAL FAMILIES: Wesen rulers who reign over the European Wesen. It is implied that Captain Renard is a part of one of the seven families. They are also a threat to everyone in Portland.
GRIMMS: Grimms are a family line of humans who can see the true form of Wesen, usually when a Wesen is experiencing strong emotions. They hunt down the “bad” Wesen who attack humans, but—as we learned in Season 1—Grimms have also traditionally sided with the Seven Royal Families, oppressing those who stand in their way.
– Where has Mama Nick been all this time, and if she was alive why did she make Aunt Marie raise Nick?
– Is Mama Nick a Grimm?
– Is Papa Nick also alive?
– Is Hank going to completely break down? Or will he pull it together and realize there’s more to Nick than meets the eye?
– What does the spell Adalind cast on Juliette do, exactly?
– For the love of god, what is Captain Renard? Is he a Wesen? A human? What is his official role in the Royal Families?
– What does the Grimm Key open, and where does the map on it lead?
– Will we see more of Kimura’s Dragon’s Tongue organization?
– Will Rosalee and Monroe get together?
– Will Adalind reappear in Season 2?
Okay, I think that's finally it. What are you most looking forward to in Season 2?
Grimm returns Monday, August 13 at 10pm on NBC.