Warehouse 13 "Instinct" Review: H.G. in Love

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Warehouse 13 S04E15: "Instinct"


I'm always a fan of episodes that explore the inner-workings of the warehouse after which Warehouse 13 is named. Like the star ship Enterprise, the Winchester brothers' '67 Impala, or any other beloved—but inanimate—object from any other series or franchise, these usually (but not always) non-sentient things often come to be regarded as characters in their own right. While the swashbuckling, globetrotting, tracking-down-artifacts routine that typically comprises an episode of Warehouse 13 is fine, for me personally, the episodes that actually deal with the warehouse itself tend to be more interesting and influential on the series as a whole. And when you add my girl Claudia to the mix, it's hard to mess things up.

But... H.G. Wells in love with a random schmuck? So in love that she's ditching the warehouse agent gig and living out her life as boring-ass Emily Lake? Not so much. 

I get it. Jaime Murray is on Defiance now and when given a choice between letting H.G. Wells staying conspicuously MIA or closing the book on her character with a happier ending than most of the characters on the show have enjoyed lately, any kind of closure is better than no closure. 

Plus, you know, in a way, H.G. ditching "endless wonder" for a 9-to-5 and karate with the kiddo isn't completely out there. H.G. has always had a hang-up when it comes to her dead daughter—Myka's assessment was pretty on target, if a little harsh—and at least this way, Wells leaves the warehouse team as a hero, rather than another exhibit in the Hall of Bronzed Baddies.

Not gonna lie, though, I had to talk myself down form the R U SERIOUSLY SERIOUS??? ledge for that aspect of the episode. I'm understanding and accepting of the situation, but still prefer my H.G. to be badass and batshit crazy. Oh well. 

And in the end it was okay because back at the warehouse we learned all about the expansion joints that Einstein developed for the warehouse and I hovered on the edge of the sofa with rapture normally reserved for documentaries about serial killers, demanding that Artie tell me more. 

I've sometimes wondered about what would happened if the warehouse gets too full. THIS IS A THING THAT I THOUGHT ABOUT, OKAY? It's not like you can just hire a construction company to come in an add a new wing, right? Probably? 

Anyway, now I'm just delighted that the show addressed the matter, because it just seemed like the sort of interesting-but-unimportant detail that, while my fellow dorks and I may've contemplated it, didn't really affect the show either way. 

So hey, expansion joints are a thing and they just expand the warehouse wherever it's needed as it's needed. COOL COOL COOL. 

However, like so many things in the warehouse, when artifacts interact with other artifacts, or even just other parts of the warehouse, crazy tends to happen... which is how one expansion joint accidentally turned into an almost-bomb when it jammed, creating the potential for disaster that could wipe out the entire warehouse. Artie and the gang—including new girl Abigail—determined that the best way to neutralize the malfunctioning joint and its artifact accomplice was to drench the thing in goo. This was easier said than done, of course, and the entire time, Claudia continued to get zapped in the junk trunk... which, instead of assassination-via-James-Marsters'-crazypants-ex like we initially considered, was revealed to be coming from the warehouse. 

Claudia thought the warehouse was mad at her for stabbing Artie and freaked about telling the Regents because she's decided she'd like to be the caretaker after all (yay!), but with a little prodding from Abigail, Claudia stopped panicking and started thinking, and realized that the bug zapper action wasn't coming from a place of anger, but one of of concern. The warehouse knew that the joint was on the verge of malfunctioning and was trying to let Claudia know. With the joint and the artifact thoroughly goo-ed, Claudia smelled apples. Our little Claudia is growing up so fast. *sniffle*


Also earning her place among the other team members this week was Abigail who, in contrast to being Leena Lite, like I'd feared, is shaping up to be the Anti-Leena, which is a move I can get behind. Carbon copies suck, and Abigail's deliberate characterization as Not-Leena to the point that she doesn't even perform the same functions has enabled the warehouse team to branch out in exciting directions (and less-exciting directions, but Pete making his own breakfast like a big boy would be a big step toward adulthood for him, so I'm down with it). 

While Abigail serves in the same counselor capacity that Leena did—for Artie, and this week, Claudia, at least—her muggle status has forced everyone to step up and take responsibility for their own feelings. Abigail's a therapist, so she can nudge and guide and offer advice, but she's not a psychic, so she can't just diagnose a problem with a wave of her hand. The incident with the malfunctioning joint may not have happened at all if Leena was still around, but it was important that it happened for the sake of encouraging Claudia to embrace her destiny. Steve picking up her artifact-organizing duties gives him a more concrete place in the warehouse family beyond being another agent/Claudia's BFF. And even the jab at Pete making his own breakfast was a small, but important potential step for a character who we've seen reduced to a man-child in recent seasons. 

So yay for Abigail. Now, regarding the show's next trick—I'm a little bit concerned that there are only five episodes left in this season and we still don't have any idea of what the "big" story is, so how about we not cram it into the last two episodes of the season, Warehouse 13? That never works out well. 

Still... apples! :D



ADDITIONAL NOTES FROM THE LIBRARY OF CRAZY

– Poor Pete has been snagged by the artifact-of-the-week for the last few episodes. That's not even a dumb Pete. That's just an unfortunate Pete. 

– "OH MY GOD, THAT'S MY BEST FRIEND." 

– Goozooka. Yesssss. 

– So, knowing that the next season of Warehouse 13 is the last, and knowing that Claudia has suddenly decided to accept her caretaker future... do we think she'll be the caretaker by the end of the series? 

– Artie and the gang seemed confident that the artifact messing with the expansion joint was an accident because that happens sometimes, but do we think it could have been something else? Something done deliberately?

– How do you feel about the end (as far as we know it) of the H.G. Wells story?


What'd you think of "Instinct"?

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