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Yes, it is 4 weeks into a hiatus. Yes, I am still obsessed with Grimm. Yes, I am loving it. :D

This is for talking about anything biology-related in the Grimm universe. Since it is such a huge and pervasive subject, I thought it might deserve its own discussion. Some ideas for talk (but you're certainly not limited to these):

  • What the heck is a Vorherrscher?
  • What the heck is a Kehrseite-Gentrager?
  • So Grimm females come into their abilities earlier than males? Evidently, but how is it that Nick was (apparently) in his late 20s-early 30s when he came into his, but Nick's mom was 11? That's a pretty big age gap.
  • Assuming that Nick's dad was a regular Kehrseite... how is it that the Grimm line hasn't died out? Unless it's very, very dominant? Or do lots of Kehrseite carry recessive genes?
  • Speaking of Kehrseite with recessive genes and Grimms, is there any biological reason behind who Grimms might be attracted to? Maybe they're more likely to be attracted to people who will carry on their line?

Here's what I was really wondering today:

According to Rosalee, if one parent is Wesen, and the other is Kehrseite, then there's a 50-50 chance that the child will be Wesen (unless the Kehrseite is a Kehrseite-Gentrager). Which means there's a 50-50 chance that the child will be Kehrseite. But that Kehrseite would most likely have recessive Wesen genes.

My guess: that's probably what a Kehrseite-Gentrager is.

But here's what I'm wondering: would such a Kehrseite have abilities beyond the norm for Kehrseite? Not supernaturally so, but something like, say... being a near-perfect shot, the first time you ever pick up a gun?

Or would an attraction be more likely between a Grimm and a Kehrseite-Gentrager, vs. a Grimm and a regular Kehrseite? Or would they maybe have a natural affinity for animals, due to having recessive Wesen genes?

...Do we know anything at all about Juliette's parents?

And if she were a Kehrseite-Gentrager, what would that mean for any children she and Nick might have?
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I've been watching this show from the beginning and I'm still confused about grimms and wessens. My main confusion is on what exactly is a kehrseite. At first I just thought the term described a human who knows about the wessen. Is there more to it than that? Is a kehrseite-gentrager a human with wessen blood? What would a human with grimm blood be called?
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A Kehrseite is just a regular human being. When they learn about the Wesen world, they become a Kehrseite Schliche-kennen (not sure about the spelling), which, at least in the show, basically just means that they're a regular person who knows the truth. :) Hank and Juliette are both Kehrseite who became Kehrseite Schliche-kennen in the last couple years.

Nothing is known (to us) about what a Kehrseite gentrager is, except that, if a Wesen and a Kehrseite gentrager have a child, then the child will definitely be Wesen. As opposed to a Wesen and a regular Kehrseite having a child... then the child is only about 50% likely to be Wesen.
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Thanks so much for the 411, that cleared things up so much for me. So now we just need to find out what a kehrseite gentranger is.
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what if a grimm had a kid with a wesen? would it be wesen or grimm? or both? a wesen grimm, that would br wesome!
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Vorherrscher is'nt a german word. There is vorherrschend=prevailing or Vorherrschaft= predominance. So I guess Vorherrscher is a person who is the ruler of oher rulers.
Kerrseite means "opposite side", but since I am not a "wesen" of the grimm's world I do not know the implications of this therm.
By the way Monroe's German sounds so cute...could listen to him forever.

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Most of the terminology in Grimm aren't existing German words, but they are derived from existing German words. Some of the forms are predictably derived; others are more idiosyncratic...like the accents.
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For some reason that always made me think of pre-german language, as if wesen have existed long before our time or, in fairytale terms, from "Once Upon a Time"...
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Well, that's true, but that would be equally true for any language. It is, I suppose, possible—and even perhaps likely—that Grimm will include some historical reasoning for the consolidation of politics and mythology (and nomenclature) for the wesen. There have been some hints—legends about the seven keys during the crusades, for instance, and one of the royal families centralized in Austria—that suggest this kind of explanation, but Grimm has been surprisingly reluctant to develop that much in its three seasons. Quite frankly, I think the show's ready to try something a little more ambitious on that front.
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But didn+t they say in the first episodes of season one that the ablility was passed over when one of the Grimm died? Like aunt Marie when she died, to Nick. This is confusing
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No, that was Buffy.

This show established girl-Grimms figure it out sooner than the boys, but sisters Marie and Kelly had the ability at the same time as their father and, later on, Nick has it at the same time his mother displays the same abililty.

Should Nick had a son - or his grandfather a son out of wedlock - they would have the same ability that Nick and Kelly Burkhardt have. The only difference is that girls would still figure it out sooner than boys.
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Not all of the children of Grimm inherit the powers. Nick's uncle didn't become a Grimm.
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Not all the Grimm children manifest the ability: Nick's uncle can still produce Grimms even if he never manifest the ability himself. Those children can still manifest the ability while Nick and his mother are alive as well.
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Marie meant the trailer with all her weapons, I've heard three different characters - from Maries's fiance in the coins episode to Bud's family - tell him so in several ocassions.

The trailer with the wesen genealogy passes on to the grimm with abilities: hence why Marie passes it on to Nick in the pilot since her brother - Nick's uncle - failed to manifest the ability.

Once the trailer is given to Nick, is that Captain Renard gets confirmation Nick is bound to manifest and therefore he needed him on his side.
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What episode did they state this in? In the pilot Marie says "I'm dying and my powers are being passed to you" but they seemed to retcon that in the season two premiere when kelly says that there is no way to tell when someone will inherit or even if they've got it. This would be a great question for one of those show panels, because it is a clarifying question for something they've already supposedly answered.
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They changed the mythology on this when Kelly returned. She said there was no way to predict when someone would inherit the Grimm legacy, or even if they ever would. Nick's uncle is a Kersiette. THe only thing that they really know is that it runs in families and that women inherit sooner than men.
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This already came up in another comment thread, which you can read here. :) There's also an excellent theory which might explain it, here.

My personal take: consider the source (Monroe, in this case, approximately 30 seconds after he first met Nick and actually spoke to him). Monroe is Wesen. Wesen haven't exactly had a lot of opportunities to study Grimms up close. :) Over time, they've noticed that some Grimms seem to come into their abilities at different times in their lives, and, in an effort to understand their predators better, they have developed this theory about why they come into their abilities at different times, and Monroe believed the theory.
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Then again, Monroe learned it from the "eat all your food or the Grimms will slaughter you in your sleep!" mentality.

A reasonable safety mechanism would be the belief there can't be more than one at the time, so wesen children had the chance to escape should a Grimm slaughter their parents in their sleep.
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If they would've thought nephews and grandfathers were waiting to slaughter children outside the house as they were slaughter in their sleep...wesen may has well commit mass suicide because: What's the point of living?
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thatstp: I can't reply directly because it doesn't let me, so hopefully you will see this. :)

Regarding: "What episode or about where was it said that Nick's father was Kehrseite? It seems I may have missed a few episodes because I don't remember that."

I'm guessing you're referring to my original post, where I said, "Assuming that Nick's dad was a regular Kehrseite... how is it that the Grimm line hasn't died out? Unless it's very, very dominant? Or do lots of Kehrseite carry recessive genes?"

It isn't established that he was a regular Kehrseite. I am assuming he is, because 1) Grimms are extremely rare, Kelly wouldn't marry a Wesen, and a Royal is unlikely to be living in... I think it was Boston... and raising his son in a normal living environment (Nick was, I think, 12 when he was "orphaned", and clearly was raised in a normal environment up until that point). Also, given how rare Grimms are, the vast majority of their ancestors must be Kehrseite, or there would be massive inbreeding.

And finally, I'm pretty sure that Nick's father was identified as one of the victims in the car crash, and the other couldn't be identified because her head was removed, but was presumed to be Kelly... but Reed's head was not removed. Kelly also said that she was the target and she sent his dad and Gina away so they would be safe. All of this indicates that Kelly was the only Grimm in their immediate family at the time.
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Wesen—

I think what you're describing—and that Rosalee and Monroe were mostly getting at—is roughly a Mendelian model of genetic inheritance, in which Wesen genes are recessive to non-Wesen genes and variably dominant/recessive in relation to one another. It doesn't entirely work, as Rosalee describes it, since of course a Wesen and a Kehrseite-Gentrager would have a 25% chance of having another Kehrseite-Gentrager, not a 100% chance of having a Wesen, and the offspring of a Wesen and a Kehrseite would ALWAYS be a Kehrseite-Gentrager and shouldn't express as a Wesen at all.

If that is the model Grimm's writers have been (admittedly loosely) following, then it wouldn't make sense that a Kehrseite-Gentrager would exhibit any heightened Wesen abilities, since the recessive allele should not receive any expression, with the exception, I suppose of codominance, which hasn't really been accounted for in their brief explanation to Nick.

This system does raise some questions about Wesen hybridity, or honestly the lack thereof. As it is described in Grimm, and as it is no doubt reinforced by some fairly intransigent racism within the Wesen community, there are very few mixed-Wesen offspring—probably "Vorherrscher," which judging only by the German designation is a heterozygous Wesen with only one species receiving expression. A rare example would be Captain Renard, who is simultaneously powerful within the Wesen hierarchy because of his royal heritage and an outcast for having a Hexenbiest mother (though his father's "species" hasn't been clarified). If inter-Wesen procreation were even remotely common, there should be occasional offspring that match neither parent's type as new combinations of alleles offer opportunities for recessive expression.

Grimm—

I'm not entirely convinced that being a Grimm follows the same rules as being a Wesen, or, in other words, that "Grimm" is a Wesen species in the same way that Blutbad or Fuchsbau are. As you point out, the system is fundamentally hereditary, but there's little in the way of explanation for the genetics of it. Even the rhetoric of the show treats it more like a magical legacy than biology, much like royalty. In this sense, I suppose any child of a Grimm could be a Grimm. It's a wonder we haven't met another one yet, one outside of Nick's immediate family. Make it happen, Grimm.

As other commenters have mentioned, there is some discrepancy in the implications of inheritance. Early episodes that included Aunt Marie suggested that some of her reasons for returning to Portland were to warn Nick that he was about to become a Grimm when her assassins eventually killed her, but because she also placed the key in his protection, this too could be used as motivation to reconnect before she died. Later episodes with his mother implied that it was a matter of maturity, not a Buffy-like succession.

This second option generally makes more sense, especially as it can be triggered by necessity and crisis. It could easily be argued that Nick's encounters with Wesen after the arrival of his aunt sparked his Grimm-powers, which have periodically increased in situations where he really needed them—like the Löwen cage fight or his heightened hearing while temporarily blinded by the Jinnamuru Xunte. And once activated, Nick seems to keep them.

All of that being said, I have NO IDEA what a Grimm-Wesen baby would be. And I'd like to know. (Make that happen too, Grimm.) I suppose, since they seem to work by different mechanisms, an individual could be both. (However, once again, a Mendelian model would preclude any of Nick's children expressing as a Wesen, unless of course he already was a Kehrseite-Gentrager.)


My general impression of Grimm is that it plays very fast and loose with ANY systematic description of genetic inheritance. It pretends to be more organized than it is, and overall I think we're just going to have to take the writers' word for whatever they come up with. So far, it hasn't really bothered me all that much.
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Thanks! That was very well-thought-out! :)

I especially liked your point about how Nick might have come into his Grimm abilities through necessity. I'd noticed some time ago how supernaturally adaptable Nick can be, but I honestly never thought to apply that to Nick's becoming a Grimm in the first place.

It even makes sense with Monroe's - I'll call it Monroe's theory - that Nick became a Grimm because his aunt died. Maybe it is something that is sparked by the necessity created by the death of a loved one at the hands of a Wesen. Except... that doesn't really explain Kelly or Marie. Unless their mother died? Or another sibling?

I'd love to see what happens when Nick has any child. :) (I think a lot of really good story can come from that... not just in terms of what it means for the mythology, but just the difficulties that arise from a stationary Grimm trying to protect his child from, at the very least, Reapers). Especially if it's a pairing that symbolizes how Nick represents changing times, like a Grimm-Wesen pairing. Or, if Juliette is Kehrseite-Gentrager, that would be fine too. :)

--

From the (admittedly) extremely little I know about genetics, something big like, "Blutbad" would be caused by more than one allele, wouldn't it? I mean, there's an awful lot that goes into what a Blutbad is. On top of the general "Wesen" characteristics (being able to sense or see a Grimm, being able to sense each other, woge-ing), there are also a number of traits that are specific to Blutbaden. Eyes that glow red, pronounced facial features and hair, reacting to a full moon, enhanced sense of smell, fangs, being ignited by the color red, dominant, aggressive personalities...

So, if being Wesen involves more than one set of genes, then... my guess is, being Wesen is a dominant trait, but that enough genes have to be present in order for it to present. Does that... work? I'm asking... I literally only know what I learned in high school biology, and that was over half my life ago. :)
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As for your questions about the genetics, both yes and no. There is absolutely no plausible way an entire "species" (another term I use for convenience instead of accuracy) could be determined by a trait (determined by a pair of alleles). Even within the scope of the supernatural, these traits would be expected to be multi-factorial rather than determined by a single gene. However, this would EXPONENTIALLY complicate the descriptions of the speciation in Grimm. Assuming all Wesen species are essentially sub-groups of human beings (and are therefore capable of producing fertile offspring), the scattering of Wesen traits across multiple chromosomal loci would necessitate real hybridity, i.e., the expression of traits from both contributing species. In other words, Rosalee and Monroe's potential offspring would be BOTH fuchsbau and blutbad, and would subsequently be able to reproduce with any other variety of Wesen or Kehrseite and pass on those traits.

The only alternative to this would be linked genes, i.e., genes who loci are close to one another on the chromosomal chain and demonstrate a high frequency of linkage during recombination. But even then, it would throw Grimm's highly simplified taxonomic scheme into complete chaos.

Look, the supernatural premise behind Grimm's world is fundamentally unsuited to biological description. The problem is that the show tried to address it, offered some half-logical explanation, and ultimately failed to make much sense or provide a systematic (if necessarily implausible) solution.
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Oh, yes, I definitely agree that the biological logic in Grimm doesn't stand up to real biological logic in any way. :)

But, if it's a good show, there will at least be some logic of some kind, that's internally consistent (or can be interpreted as being internally consistent). :) Their only other options are to completely ignore the subject (not possible since they've written a story where biology is central to the entire mythology), or to suit the logic to whatever their current needs happen to be (BAD, BAD writing, and I have more faith in the writers than that!)

So, I'm going from the assumption that there is logic. My goal, as always, is to kind of figure out what that logic might be. And maybe help clarify where there might be problems with the logic, and to find ways around those problems. :)
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I thought it was the death of Nick's Aunt that triggered his Grimm status?
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That was kind of implied (by Monroe) in the Pilot, but I think the writers have kind of retconned that idea. In S2, when Nick specifically asked about this subject, Kelly said that females seem to come into their abilities earlier than males, but that the only thing that is known for sure, is that it is hereditary.

I like to think that the death of one Grimm triggering the onset of Grimm abilities in another family member, is a popular theory within the Grimm universe... something Wesen speculate about in order to try to understand their hunters better. But it's just a theory.
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Yeah, its an issue that wasn't explained too clearly by the show. I decided to consult 'Grimm Wiki' and it looks as though it was a simple case of coincidence with his Aunt's visit and the onset of his abilities.
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This isn't helpful to your discussion, but I have sort of wondered that when you have two different kind of Wesen, maybe what comes of that is a Grimm? It could be related to that breaking of whatever law Monroe's parents were referring to. I've also kind of always wondered if technically the Grimm are actually Wesen too. But like that is why crossing species is forbidden that you produce a Grimm who is just designed to kill both species, and the female of that production is able to pass the genes on. I feel like that might connect to why females become Grimm so much sooner than males.

OR, this idea, I know the earliest accounts we have heard have been the Templar Knights being Grimm, but I think that was just when they were hooked up with the Royals.

We don't really know anything about Juliette's family (though I assume that lady probably knows) and I can't tell if her grandmother raised her or just came to live with her family when she was young.
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No worries: it's biology-related, and therefore it's good discussion for this thread. :)

This is nicely thought-out, and I do think that, somewhere in their ancestry, Grimms probably do have Wesen lineage. But I doubt it's as simple as "two different Wesen produce a Grimm." The Verrat can't get ALL the interspecies couples, all over the world, before they produce a child, after all. So if two Wesen together produced a Grimm, the production of Grimms would be a much more common occurrence, and "Mom and Dad are both Wesen" would be a common thing among Grimms, and they wouldn't all have been taught that killing Wesen is right and good and necessary.

I think that Nick is evidence of the fact that a Grimm's... calculated disregard... for Wesen life and Wesen rights, is a learned trait, not a genetic one. They kill Wesen because they were taught by their parents that killing Wesen is the right thing to do, and even the more liberal-minded ones (who just believe in killing the bad kinds of Wesen) still think that a Wesen's worth is entirely determined by their species... again, because they were taught to believe this way by their parents. They were also taught to think of Wesen as not human, while they themselves ARE human. None of that would have happened if any Grimm were ever birthed and raised by Wesen, and not by other Grimms.

Personally, I think two Wesen of a different species produce a Wesen of... whichever species is dominant, but with recessive traits of the other. The Verrat object to this for the same reason the Verrat object to Lausenschlange running restaurants: they're bigots who believe in racial purity and a strict caste system, and keeping other Wesen in their place by telling them how they may or may not live their lives.

But maybe there is something here... maybe a Grimm originates as a genetic mutation among parents with a particular combination of Wesen genes? That might explain why the only Grimms we know of, throughout history, were born and raised by other Grimms and grew up believing that Wesen were something "other."
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How about this the Royal or the Verrat get word of a particular different Wesen baby and takes them from the parent. If the child becomes Grimm they become the loyal Grimm if they are the...the German v word...they get put into the Verrat. Grimms are rarer from that mating and at some point (and maybe just Kelly and Marie) managed to get out from under the Royals. Im trying to insert some of what we have seen of the Royals and how the Verrat are attached to them and not the Wesen council.
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Ok, please bear with me; I recently rewatched seasons 1 and 2, and these facts may come out in a bit of a jumble. :)

Here are various facts we know for sure, that I think are relevant to your theory (even if they aren't relevant to each other): :)
  • Kelly and Marie were raised by their father. When Kelly first came into her abilities at 11, her father decided to pull no punches, and "he told me exactly what I would be up against. I didn't sleep for weeks."
  • Their father took Kelly and Marie on their first hunt when she was 18. "The first few were horrifying, but I quickly realized that we were doing what needed to be done."
  • The books, weapons, potions, and everything else in the trailer, were passed down by their Grimm ancestors, since the Middle Ages.
  • According to Kelly, Royals hired Grimms to help keep Wesen in line. The books, however, never seem to be from the perspective of somebody who's working for the Royals. All the Grimm authors of the book journal entries seemed to be more like wandering vigilantes.
  • Also according to Kelly, just about the only thing that's known for sure about whether somebody will be a Grimm or not, is that it's hereditary (i.e. you must have a Grimm somewhere in your ancestry, to have any chance of becoming a Grimm).
  • Also according to Kelly, the key Nick has is one of 7. When the Grimms found the mystery object that no-one can ever find, they hid it, made a map, divided the map and made it into 7 keys, and gave a key to each of the 7 Grimm families. The Royals now have 4 of the keys, because they tortured the Grimms who were holding those keys (implying that Grimms, in general, may work for the Royals, but only to a point, and they certainly don't trust them. They refused to relinquish their keys to the Royals until they were forced to do so through torture). The other three keys have been passed down through the Grimm families ever since.
  • The Verrat is a militant organization that was created by the Royals. Their ranks appear to be mainly (if not entirely) Hundtjaeger, which is a type of Wesen a lot like a large, wild dog. And apparently, they don't want any "Vorherrscher" to be born... which, if that's where their ranks mainly come from, strikes me as counterproductive. :)
  • The Grimm who was videotaping the Verrat's execution of Wesen who intermarried by firing squad, appeared to actually be somewhat sympathetic to the Wesen (although he did nothing to stop it). He talked about the charges that the Wesen were framed for, and described the executed Wesen as "innocent" (an unusual word for a Grimm to apply to a Wesen, which implies no love is lost between Grimms and the Verrat. Either that, or this particular Grimm was just especially liberal-minded, for a Grimm).
  • When going through Wesen genetics, Monroe seemed pretty confident that when both parents are Wesen, but different kinds, "then you're looking at a Vorherrscher." He then continued, "But, as long as it's healthy, we don't care." Monroe WOULD care, if he were going to parent something like a Hundtjaeger... he HATES them. He might not care if he and Rosalee were going to have a Grimm, since he knows Nick... but it's already pretty established that the Grimm "gene" (assuming there is such a thing) is passed through Grimm families.
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What episode or about where was it said that Nick's father was Kehrseite? It seems I may have missed a few episodes because I don't remember that.
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Thanks for the refresher. I really only kind of focusedon the Knights Templars and that maybe that was where the distrust between the Grimm and the Royals began. I don't remember the identity of the vi deographer being identified. I think I keep so much Teen Wolf mythology in my head that I end up just watching this because I like all the characters. I am actually a big Juliette apologist.
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