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"All Fall Down" picked up directly where "Ashes to Ashes" left us hanging for over a week (sorry, football World Cup, missing braincells etc.), with John Alden and Mary Sibley somewhere in the woods around Salem, him realizing that Mary used witchcraft to teleport him from prison, and subsequently, from his certain death...













So John didn't really mind... A little cheesy the dialogue in that scene, but you know, it worked? It was THE moment to be cheesy is all I say.


Right after she left John, Mary was approached by an old acquaintance of hers...












LOL, Mercy, one of a kind...







And then she kind of lost it...






Back in Salem, Isaac was visiting Cotton - to ask him to visit John, him being his closest friend and all, but Cotton was too ashamed for his doubts and he felt guilty, in that he failed to find the true witch. Isaac was very sweet and left Cotton with that decision but urged him to talk as long as there is time to talk.
Also, Increase's men took all of Cotton's blasphemous possessions as it was part of a deal to let him back into the flock.




Imagine an upbeat, 80's sitcom theme for the next screenshot:




Anne is sometimes hilarious.













Back in the woods, with the old hags:




OMG memories... high school reunion, anyone? Alright, sorry, moving on...









But as soon as Mary was gone, it was time for the hags to begin with plan B...









So it was just a ruse by Increase to bet on Mary's feelings for John, so that she would free him and therefore reveal herself. Since both are gone with no witnesses, I don't know if Increase's big plan was so really thought through, but Increase was always a little full of himself...


Actually it's Increase's blood from when he cut himself and he planted it on John Alden. My fault, and additionally, I couldn't fit it as a tag on the picture. Good catch, @AndreaMcCooey!


Cotton did not like to hear this, but Increase wasn't really open to suggestions - not anymore.


Meanwhile, the Hales were arriving at their cabin in the woods...













Well done, Anne! A little weird, but yeah, whatever. Hale should have told his daughter sooner, mark my words, I have seen the episode. j/k












A huge reveal, the child unborn has been born... with some help from the devil, I guess. That's why the old hags were so sure to have still control over Mary...
















Meanwhile, Cotton was really busy...























Brilliant, more of those witches, please!





While Alden had to deal with immediate execution, Isaac arrived at the infamous tree, Mary was seemingly thorough in her directions...




No! What were you thinking, Isaac... ugh. Mary should have known, he IS a simpleton.
Speaking of witch (haha):


































Wow, the alarm went off nicely, Hale knows his stuff!





Anne freaked out - she wanted to help or at least warn some of the folks, but the only door to the cabin was locked:












Anyone still thinking watching Salem is a waste of time? No? Thought so.
What's John Alden doing BTW?



Nooooooooo°°°°°°°!!!!! John got saved from the gallows from his awesome Indian friends - only to catch the last bullet to the chest...




LOL, Tituba's timing was more than often spell-on, I think...
Speaking of spell-casting witches...






Hm... let's recall what happened in this very night to our dear characters:
Increase Mather, for example:


Or his son, Cotton:


Or what about Anne with her family ON HER FACE?

And John Alden:

And trusty old Isaac:

Hm... an eventful night, I'd say!
That leaves Mary and the promise Tituba gave her:




It's done. It happened. ALL of them DEAD I'm inclined to say, I mean, sure, "ALL Fall Down" leaves little room for any doubts that some of our beloved characters are going to bite the dust, but geez... There was a lot of dying, folks. And it was GOOD. Last week I wrote some about how I think this first season is remarkable to say the least, and this finale didn't disappoint in any way, I would have to dig up corpses to find any bothersome misplacement of a character or storyline considering the feverish pace this gem hustled us through the woods of Salem. Mercy Lewis and Cotton Mather and John Alden came a bit short in the finale but they will get considerably more in the first episodes of the second season, and I for one, was thankful for the larger parts the now deceased characters got in their final hour: Stephen Lang's Increase Mather, Xander Berkeley's Magistrate Hale, Iddo Goldberg's Isaac, you will all be direly missed, damn it, I miss you already! But I'm sure, other great actors will jump in and have fun in this, because beside all the darkness, the violence, the craziness of the whole premise, Salem gave me from the first minute on the feeling that I see the product of a sworn team, a well oiled, purring machine, an ensemble that likes working in this and with the others.
The cinematography was impressive to me, I've seen all seasons of American Horror Story and I was still impressed, from the pilot on we had this wonderful, consequent depiction of this time, the lighting was breathtakingly authentic, I can't believe what modern digital cameras are able to achieve nowadays, it made it hard sometimes to catch proper screenshots, lol, but hey, dark is dark...
Same with the characters - the ones who made it into next season have a hell of a ride behind them already. John Alden, the war hero, a cynic absent of any real hope of salvation and happiness, became a wise romantic, fighting for his own shot at salvation through love, gaining not only his freedom but maybe his soul also. He is now. at the end of this season between life and death in the hands of his brothers from the Mohawk tribe.
Mary Sibley was a fearsome witch with no remorse and an abundance of ruthlessness and she came around to sabotage her lifelong plan, to leave it all behind because she did have a heart, she cared for others and she wasn't willing to pay the price for all the power promised - in the end she was tricked to continue.
Mercy Lewis was a fearful child, now is a powerful witch, completely independent and fueled with a rage on the society of her time, she wages war on everyone with power and surrounds herself with others without power - brilliant!
The Hales... Anne was a protected daughter of the town's magistrate, nice, smart, but also naive and dependable, she realized, along her growing awareness what actually transpires in Salem , that she possesses the most whopping amount of witchcraft in all Salem - and she killed in a fury her parents! A Carrie-moment right there, the oppressed child uses her powers to un-break her chains of love and guilt. Papa and Mama Hale were paying the price for leaving her daughter too long in the dark, with the Grand Rite coming and all its implications, Hale should have told his daughter earlier, preparing her for what to come, but Hale was always shying away from bold decisions and taking stances, his whole life of deceit and lies came crushing down on him, more exactly on his face in disguise of a chunk of wood.
And Cotton... he went practically through all stages of a proper psychoanalysis, with his mother, aehm I mean lover, Glorianna, being exiled by his father, a fearsome witchfinder who was always showing his contempt for his son's "weaknesses". He was faced with the paradox to experience the consequences of a puritan society and all the pain and suffering it causes, while at the same time he was confronted with inexplicable witchcraft with all its danger and power. And when Cotton made his first own steps, decisions, he was played by the witches and I fear he will surpass his father if he ever finds out was really happened...
Salem's writing was a little shaky here and there, in the finale I asked myself how Tituba escaped the House Of Pain, but she was already portrayed as a powerful witch, so with the militia and Increase gone I don't see a reason for her to stay locked up. So even the smaller inconsistencies have been addressed and explained so far, I guess we will see why those Indians came to help Alden - they were not the ones he lived with - I think they were the ones John and Hale met when they were looking for missing Anne...
Be that as it may, Salem was really entertaining, the intro is perfect for the show, the actors, the fast paced and interwoven storytelling, the characters, the eery depiction of witchcraft, the gore, the satiric elements(Cotton's journey into the wild!), all that came together nicely.
So now this leaves us with some questions, indeed:
-will John Alden survive?
-why were the Indians helping him?
-will Cotton ever arrive in Boston - and if so: will he learn the truth?
-what about Mary's semi-aborted child? Evil, normal, good? Spawn of evil?
-what will Mercy do in the woods, with her army of the poor and crippled?
-was the Rite properly completed or did Isaac fuck it up?
-will Salem die of the curse(in case it worked as intended)?

Alright, now I will hibernate with a few spiders in an old tree until the madness returns...

Klotensen










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So happy to see you do a write up on Salem, Klotensen! Are you going to continue in the new season? I was a late-comer to Salem. I tried watching the premiere back right after it aired, and there was so much going on I had to watch it 2 times just to get everything that happened.. My son was still an infant then though, and I didn't have very much time to dedicate to a new series on top of my trove of current shows lol. I am glad that I was able to binge-watch the series when it appeared on netflix, what a compelling show! I just finished re-watching the season (again on netflix,) and I have even more of an appreciation for the show. My only complaint about the finale was that they had to kill Xander Berkley, he was one of my favorite characters, even if he did make some critical errors. He was trying to tow the line between satisfying the coven & keeping his family safe.. I feel like Anne could have understood that better, esp since the show was making such a big to-do about her "coming into her own" and learning the truth about her family. But then again she did look all demon-eyed so I guess she wasn't really "herself" so to speak..
Excited to start the new season!
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Thanks! This show, right? I bet you had a blast binge-watching it ...
So far I'm a little u8ncertain if I can make it this time, but there has to be a place here to talk about it and I do love to make gifs of the most gory and the most silly moments, so even if it's way shorter(I probably overdid it anyway, lol) than before, I'll hope I find the time to do something.
I totally agree on Xander Berkeley, one of my favorites too and I miss him already! It's still hard to imagine a season without him and Stephen Lang, let's see what Lucy Lawless will add to the show - I think it's gonna be fun.
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Let me know if you want my help, I have zero experience with making gifs, but I can certainly summarize a plot!
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I will keep that in mind, thank you!
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OH I GET IT!
This series is about witches....totally makes sense now
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Haha, missed you. Wanna laugh too? Look in the comments of the TCA awards article.
Hilarious.
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I bet the "tard" hates this show since it is actually a good show
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Thank god he doesn't know - big surprise, lol
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Yeah, I saw it.
I guess the special ed school is on summer vacation
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Yup.
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Perfection!!!
I always eagerly anticipate your recaps/reviews! THANK YOU
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You are welcome, Vicky.


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Agreed and me too! I am revisiting all of your reviews before Season 2. Any plans to continue your brilliant work in April (the season of the German witch - ha!!!)?
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Thanks! I think yes, but maybe a bit shorter, it was lots of work...
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Great job show, great job Herr Klotensen. (How excellent was Germany's victory?) It was a pleasure to take this ride with a dedicated re-capper who continued to keep us up to date despite that many episodes fell during the Cup. Thanks a bunch.

Anne just completely scalped the top of her Mom's head straight off. If Dad had only listened to his wife and spilled the beans earlier, you are correct - 'Percy' and wife probably would have made it to Season 2. the whole time she was telling him, 'Maybe we need to have the talk.' Each time she got brushed off. Waited too long Magistrate.

You knew Isaac was going to die - but it still stung when he really got the worst possible death. Anything that causes festering wounds all over the face and body can't be good. Poor dumb Isaac the Fornicator. Mary got him worse than 'Hannah/Belle' did the last time I watched him in a show. (The only one who made it out of 'Secret Diary of a Call Girl' happy was 'Tituba'.)


Loved the reappearance of 'Tituba' for the finale. That wasn't cahones that got her in Mary's face - it was what she knew and it had to be her to deliver the (good???) news. I think 'Hale' just let her go because he knew what he really needed and didn't think she mattered that much. History seems to indicate she made it out of 'Salem' -maybe next year we'll learn how she got out of jail. They are stuffing so much into these episodes and doing a pretty damn good job of keeping it moving smoothly. Mary got lucky she never had to tell John about the 'abortion'. The offspring looked like he might have some 'Damien Thorn' in him. The old witches, and Tituba always had that in their back pocket and the fact he was alive explains a lot of what we saw. Awesome how it played in the finale.

This was my favorite new show of the season from a network that never had one. The only one close was 'Reign' because just like this one, it defied any and all expectations I had for it going in. 'The 100' was impressive and I think 'Halt and Catch Fire' is getting better and better, Lee Pace is so phenomenally good in it. But this one from start to finish had me completely engrossed. Last year i found 'Banshee' and 'Orphan Black' (Hell yeah, finally got its Third Season renewal this week!) were the best and both kept it up and improved their sophomore runs and I have no doubt 'Salem' will do the same next year.

Mary convinced Cotton to skewer his dad. That devious (totally awesome) bitch. Holy sh@t. That scene was so excellent. Cotton FINALLY realizing he really doesn't know anything, kills Dad, leaves Mary to explain what happened and then hightails it. Maybe he'll find Maryanna on the road to Boston. But he'll be back. If you can ever find a Seth Gable interview discussing how this is the best role he's ever taken find them. He just is glowing in interviews talking about playing 'Cotton' and he never fails to mention - 'This is the best part I've ever had.' i think we can all agree on that.

So next year we have Anne 'The Witch' v. Mercy Lewis (the smart one building an army) v. Mary Sibley --- this is going to be fun. Will 'Tituba' still be around, hope so. I want more now.

At the end of the day, as much as i love the bejezus out of Mercy Lewis and want her to find some retribution -I'm switching teams - Team Mary! The odds are stacking against our anti-heroine and that's when Janet Montgomery is just the most important person on this awesome set.

Only one missing was Sammi Hanratty -where was 'Dollie'?

Til next year folks. See you around.

ps I was in a great frame of mind checking out this finale when on Friday it was revealed that LeBron James is coming home. It'll be good to have the King back where he belongs cause basketball in Cleveland has been a train wreck since he left.

Peace and cookies 'til we meet again!

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The reveal of the "lost child" is not really new, BUT it really surprised me and it was well done, I think. I got the same heavy Damien impression but mostly from the looks not necessarily from the vibes - but who else than the Devil un-aborted him, so he is most likely a spawn of pure evil. I guess John has to kill him, lol.
I missed Dollie too, what is she up to? Will she join up with Mercy or will she "run into" Cotton on his way to Boston?
The fact that LeBron is coming home is good news, I was never a friend of his time in Miami - now they have a good time in Cleveland, lol, I mean team. You know, both works!
BTW did you see my little Rio-Jesus in one of the pictures? I couldn't resist.
ps: if you don't know it yet, you might wanna check out UTOPIA, the second season started now in a spectacular fashion and it's fucking awesome. It's heavy shit though, with somewhat psychedelic soundtrack, but it's insanely well made and I had to endorse it.
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Awesome inclusion of Rio Jesus! Gonna miss that sucker. ''The Hales' having a Jesus on the lawn would have been a great shot outside of the house to open the credits - - just needs an intro. (Maybe we could get Alan Thicke to write one, he used to bust those out all the time. Personal favorite of mine is still 'Different Strokes'. 80's theme music was so much more fun. )
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Forgot to mention, found the You Tube After Show for 'Ashes to Ashes' and Sammi Hanratty was the guest. All season long I've been wondering why she seems so familiar and now I know. She is only 18 yrs old but has been on television since she was 9. (My memory of her was as the youngster version of Anna Friel's 'Chuck' from 'Pushing Daisies'.) At 18 she already has a full page on her IMDB resume. She even did MADtv (so superior in every way to Saturday Night Live during its run.) Impressive young woman who is coming back for 2.
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I'm totally hanratty for Sammi!
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Yeah, everything Whedonrules says!

San Antonio Spurs #1;-)
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TIMMY WON ANOTHER ONE! Love Duncan. If Cavs get Kevin Love they'll have 2 of the top 5 scorers in the league and this could be interesting. But the biggest hill in the West is still looking good Vicky. I learned when LaBron was first here, never EVER overlook the team coached by Pop.
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Thanks for covering it Klotensen! Fun stuff. And in the process, my young padawan, you became a .gif Jedi! Now you can play and tweak the software you want to use for next season! Although, all in all, Photoscape kinda rocks.

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Eddy Wan Kenobi!
I was always considering myself a Jedi, lol, in my heart at least... But lately I flirted heavily with Sith teachings and although I will try hard to use the force of GIF only for good, it's like Yoda said: by trying I already lost.
I'm sorry, got carried away, write "jedi" and I go off the rocker, lol! Because I had so many gifs for this one, I tried to make them as small as possible without sacrificing too much of the size and I'm happy. Maybe I could have used transitions in the "long" gifs with longer time gaps between each picture, but then the size explodes, of course. Photoscape rocks, it's true. Thanks for sharing!
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If you look at my last Farscape recap (Dog with Two Bones) I must have 20 transition picture gifs in addition to 3 or 4 regular motion gifs and 2 videos.

If I was ever gonna run out of room for my upload - that would have been the one. Yet - it all loaded fine. I would release yourself from limitations and just enjoy. TV.com gives us lots of sand in the sandbox and room to play.

Great job, Master Jedi!
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I think there will be some timey wimey shennanigans to bring most of the cast back. At least Hale and Increase (LOL) Mather. And probably Alden and Issac since they are mortally wounded.

By rule, any aborted child that still manages to grow up will be evil. FACT
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have you met a lot of aborted children;-) lol
Yep, the child is EVIL….I hope
I think the Hales and Increase (lol) will stay dead but John will live. Issac is a fan favorite so I think the show will keep him alive (at least for one more episode)
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IDK - Xander Berkley was a good get for this show. I doubt he stays dead. MAybe since he is a witch...
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thank you for replying;-) and the thumbs up even though I'm running super late for your party!
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The party can never really start til you get there Vicky! We've all been WAITING!!!!
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Any aborted child that manages to grow up will be evil. So true. So damn true...
Who will be brought back but John Alden? Isaac has super-witch-plague and needs a full-body transplant, Increase has been eaten by dogs while his soul lingered and watched in agony, Hale got scanned and even AUDREY has a better chance of recovery! But maybe you're right, this once, lol, (hear hear, right? Look who's talking, me and my myriad of mistakes, how can I ever blame Tim again?), Anne full of grief activates one of her dormant powers and travels back through time, intercepts Isaac, buries the apple, rushes to Increase and kills Mary by scanning! Later she travels further back in time, falls in love with her grand-grand-grandfather and subsequently founds the line of natural born witches Q.E.D.
Seriously, I expect some stunts at the beginning of next season, but I wouldn't put it past Braga and Simon to surprise us - again.
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Just as long Braga pulls out GOOD surprises and not Star Trek surprises that damned the series' he was involved in.

I would think that was all written with an exact plan as to how to get out of it all. God I hope. Writers had to learn after the 1st season of LOST
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Yes to all you wrote, Ed. Actually knowing Braga was involved almost kept me from watching Salem! Take the last Star Trek installation, "Enterprise" - they(he) did so much wrong in every instance... it's mind boggling...
But maybe because of Adam Simon they made a lot of right decisions on this one, so learning helps, it seems!
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Every time I watch the AWESOME title sequence (my discussion would have had Salem if I had known about it TV's Best Title Sequences) and see Braga's name I throw up in my mouth a little ...astounded as to how much I love this show
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This show has constantly surprised and and impressed me as the season has gone on. The finale did not disappoint, in fact it surpassed any and all expectations that I had for the finale. Wow. That is what I was left with after watching the episode.

Finally Mary showed her powers. That was great, I had been sitting there wondering why Mercy and even Anne was seemingly more powerful than Mary, but nope, I was wrong, Mary is a badass and what she did to Increase was nothing short of genius. However, Increase as she pointed out was far from innocent, did the rite require just innocence of witchcraft, because if so that makes more sense, because Increase was guilty of a lot of things, mostly of being a puritanical asshole. I am glad he is gone, and I think it was a good thing. But you have to wonder with all of the characters spread out where it is going to go next season.

As for John, he will survive, I have to wonder if the Native Americans are going to take a bigger role in the next season. They seemed to know what was going on and presumably they could have been aware of the rite and took steps to protect themselves against it. Most Native American culture are very spiritual and could easily become part of the magic that the show delves into.

Cotton I think will come back. Not sure how, but I believe that perhaps Anne will seek him out and he and Anne might form an alliance of sorts so that Cotton can finally learn a thing or three about actual witches and Anne can learn to control her powers and perhaps use them for good.

Speaking of Anne, she is awesome and apparently a Scanner. The whole of her killing her parents was fantastic and over the top and everything I have expected from this show.

Mercy, she is special. I mean seriously she is whacked out of her mind. Her tricks seem minuscule compared to Mary and now Anne. I am not sure what is going to become of her other than be the crazy witch in the woods.

Isaac, poor Isaac. All he wanted was a cuddle or something and what did he get? He got poisoned with the witch equivalent of a bio weapon. Yikes.

I kind of hope that Salem will die a horrid death. They were horrible people. They kind of deserve it.


Overall this was probably my biggest surprise hit of the TV season. Thanks Klotenesen for reviewing it and providing the great and hilarious commentary on the episode, seriously thanks for taking the time and this has probably been one of the best reviews of a show on this site. You're great at it. Thanks.
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LOL@ Anne is a SCANNER;-)
She scanned her mom!
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At least she left her MOM'S FACE intact... Anne is almost an elegant scanner...
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It's my biggest surprise of this tv season too.
I wonder about the upcoming part of the Natives too, more would be welcome! In the flashback John wondered why the medicine man of that tribe took such an interest in him - could be he is gifted by a strong connection to the "force".
Mary was really good in the finale, Janet Montgomery did an awesome job this whole season, she owned the finale. Mercy will get a bigger part I think in the upcoming season, not sure what it will look like - she could come back with the young and old and sick and overtake the whole town, when the plague killed everyone in it - should be easy to achieve, lol. Or she will end up as the crazy witch of the forest, with her minions helping.
However, I do think Anne is the most powerful of all the witches shown so far. Rose was also pretty powerful, but Anne is a SCANNER, how great is this? Her physical transformation is interesting, her eyes, the tongue, it'll be great to see if this continues...
Also her and Cotton teaming up is something I would love to see! Cotton will be back, he has to!
And thanks Mate, I gave my best and am happy that you liked it so much!
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  1. It wasn't John Alden's blood, it was Increase's blood. Some of which had been planted on Alden, so Increase's henchmen and their hounds could follow the scent and find Alden in the woods, hopefully with Mary.
  2. Tituba didn't escape the House of Pain, she was let go in exchange for giving up John's name to Increase. Mary even confirmed as much to Mercy when she found her in the Death Pit last week.
My only problem with the finale is that Mercy is still alive, and also that Isaac is not.
I'm not sure that the rite worked properly, as the plague wasn't released where it was meant to be. It may be that the Dark lord needed the start of the death to begin where he would be born, and now he's probably going to try to use Mary's child to posess and walk the earth in.
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I corrected the blood detail, good catch.
That Tituba was let go in the previous episode by Increase is something I don't clearly understand - she was a witch and Increase should have known that she will help Mary to complete the Grand Rite. I already wrote that he was full of himself, but this is just the icing on the cake. He deserved dogs gnawing on his bones.
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Increase was a muppet. It's possible he thought that Tituba was either
  1. too injured to be of any help to Mary
  2. too pissed off at Mary for not loving her back to go back to her
  3. too out of favour with Mary for getting Alden arrested and put on trial
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good show!! do we know if there will be a second season?? Miss it already..
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Yes, there will be a second season! The network ordered a second pretty early, a good sign I like to think.
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