Warehouse 13 "What Matters Most" Review: Reality Bites

Warehouse 13 S04E17: "What Matters Most"

Well, that was quite a change of pace from last week's suckfest—and in a good way, too! After screwing around for half of this run of episodes, Warehouse 13 has finally decided to grace us with plot. Thanks, Warehouse 13. You're swell. 

With Pete and Myka in Ohio and Artie and Claudia in New York City, Steve and Abigail had to do some maintenance on the warehouse's goo system. They talked about their feelings because Jinks made the unusual decision not to accompany bestie Claudia on a mission and also because the writers apparently think we'll forget that Abigail is a shrink if they go more than two episodes without blatantly mentioning it. Whatevs. We needed some more Abigail backstory, which was ultimately the motivation for the chatter, even if the conversation started out being about Jinks and his sudden concern for his love life. 

Abigail loved her job, but met a patient who she couldn't help, so she quit and got into photography, bumped into a regent, and landed the gig at the warehouse, where she's been systematically paired off with each of her coworkers on an episode-by-episode basis ever since. I'm guessing next week will be Myka's turn, what with that cancer diagnosis and all. 


I'm definitely interested, but also kind of concerned and a little bit confused, because Warehouse 13 is generally a silly little show where nothing too terrible seems to stick. I sincerely thought Leena would've somehow been brought back by now. (My bad.) So Myka's cancer diagnosis just seemed, initially, a little too "real" for this show. People on Warehouse 13 don't get cancer because that's not the kind of show Warehouse 13 is.

So I slept on it. Had some coffee. Then I remembered an idea that came up in the Supernatural comments back when Sam Winchester first started his Hell trials and started hacking up a lung. We all assumed it was connected to the Hell stuff, but a few voices left the hivemind and went for something completely different: What if it wasn't? 

It was, but until we got that confirmation, the idea of something so mundane happening on a show full of so many fantastical elements made for some interesting discussion and exciting possibilities. 

Myka's ovarian cancer is like that. It's a story element that grounds this fantasy show in brutal reality. The world that the warehouse agents live in is one in which the uncommon and the weird are the norm. It'll be interesting to see how everyone reacts to this terribly human and normal thing invading their magical little world where there's an artifact to fix almost anything. 

The arrival of Abigail as Leena's replacement goes hand in hand with Myka's diagnosis, Artie's guilt, Steve's relationship worries, and even though it was played mostly for laughs—Pete's low testosterone levels (and on a way less funny note: Pete's guilt over the drunk-driving incident that hurt his friend so badly). So many of the concerns that've plagued the warehouse team in this second half of the season have been human, normal, and very relateable. Even though Abigail performs some of the same functions as Leena did as an emotional barometer and sounding board for the agents, her experience is grounded in science, in contrast to Leena's psychic abilities. She has to work at understanding her charges and they have to take some responsibility for their feelings because Abigail can't tell them what they're feeling the way Leena could. 

It's been a very slow build, but the point of the season is starting to take a definite form: Life is harder at the warehouse these days, and it has nothing to do with the magical items it holds. It's just part of being a human. 

Also: I'm really grumpy about Nick being a bad dude, mostly because he took advantage of Claudia and she really thought she was helping and they had a moment and Artie was so proud and uggggh screw you, Nick. Hate u. 

I am so excited for next week in a way I haven't been excited about this show in weeks. Gold star, Warehouse 13! 


– Abigail continues to be nobody's freaking mom. Make your own breakfast, suckas! I love it. 

– Bill Nye shout-out! 

– "Gated communities: for when you miss boot camp." There's so much truth in that statement, Pete. So much. 

– Lol @ "motion lotion."

– How do you think Myka's big C storyline is going to play out? Will an artifact save the day?

What'd you think of "What Matters Most"?

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