Grimm delivers an incredibly disappointing seasonal episode that contributes nothing to the mythology or the character development. H*ll, it’s not even a memorable holiday episode.
Let’s bitch it out…I would have liked ‘La Llorona’ had it not tried to position itself as a Halloween episode. But the events of the episode, in which a mysterious woman in white (Angela Alvarado) kidnaps three children annually, explicitly positioned itself around the pumpkin holiday. And let’s be honest: in the world of Grimm, filled with monsters, ghouls and creatures, the show opted to go with a stupid, incredibly predictable ghost story that just plain sucks.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not the ghost angle that sinks this waste of time. If it were truly a ghost story, then it might have been interesting and initially when a Mexican child is kidnapped, it seems as though ‘La Llorona’ is going to explore a culturally specific legend (see also: the title and the association to the day of the dead). Instead it quickly becomes clear that the only reason that an ethnic family has been included is so that Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch) can interact with the caricatured stereotype of the wise old spiritual grandma, Pilar (Bertila Damas). And even then we don’t learn anything new from these interactions. Juliette will apparently need to choose, and even though she adamantly stresses that she won’t (in one of Tulloch’s more unfortunate line readings), we know that she’ll choose Nick (David Giuntoli). What…she goes with Renard (Sasha Roiz) the man who she doesn’t know, and gives her the heebie-jeebies? Puh-lease
As for the case of the week, it’s rote, predictable and uninspired. As always the Grimm writers seem to have studied at the school for perfunctory writing, because every beat is telegraphed, there’s nothing new being told and worst of all, what has already been told was done far better than we see here. Gosh, who would have expected that Albuquerque FBI agent Valentina (Kate del Castillo) was no longer an active agent? Or that the area where the woman in white drowns the children is where the rivers intersect? When you can guess exactly where the episode is headed before the cold-open ends, it’s clear that the writers aren’t even trying to entertain you anymore…they’re just filling that 22 episode order that NBC asked for. Thanks for wasting our time, Grimm
- Monroe’s (Silas Weir Mitchell) B storyline feels like a stolen excerpt from Goosebumps. Kids decide to play a prank on the misunderstood adult who turns out to actually be a monster. Telegraphing, again, is a huge issue: as soon as Nick makes Monroe promise that no one will be hurt when he drops off his mace it’s clear that it will be used to injure someone or something. When the kids set it off through Monroe’s window, all I could do was sigh and shake my head at how obvious the outcome is. And to end the episode with Monroe scaring the kids with his true Wessen visage? So predictable. Bring back Bree Turner from maternity leave so that poor Mitchell has something to do with his character again!
- The one saving grace of Monroe’s storyline: how cute it is that all the small children know who he is. Though I still found it creepy when he offered the little girl a lollipop (stranger danger!)
- What’s more hilarious: how slowly the woman in white walked with the three kidnapped kids towards the water or Nick, after tackling her into the water, haphazardly trying to strangle her. Oh wait…it’s the fact that he just lets her go when she changes her face to resemble a human. Better hope she’s actually gone Nick, otherwise you just let out a Wessen who will kill three kids in a year’s time. A*s
- Renard is tracking Adalind (an unseen Claire Coffee) and knows that she’s been to Austria. Can we please kick this storyline into high gear and bring Adalind back? The show is clearly lacking from anything resembling mythology or interesting storylines, so the re-introduction of one of the series’ premiere villains should inject some life into this dead beast of a show
- Finally, Valentina proves to be a dull character. Not only is it immaterial that she is Wessen, but her “my nephew was kidnapped five years ago” sob story is dull and overly familiar. Perhaps this is why I responded to everything in this episode so angrily: it reminds me of case of the week serial killer cop dramas like Criminal Minds, right down to Valentina’s use of the word “unsub” (police shorthand for perp or suspect). Sorry, but if I wanted to watch that, I’d watch Criminal Minds, not Grimm
- Juliette (translating a conversation in Spanish between grandmother and father of the kidnapped child): “She’s saying La Llorona took Raphael…and he’s telling her to shut up.” There’s something unintentionally hilarious about Tulloch’s delivery, which accidentally turned a statement into a punchline
- Nick (when Hank asks how he sleeps): “You got my back” Ugh…can I get a “dawg” in there? Somewhere Randy Jackson is looking for his missing catchphrase
What do you think viewers: is this episode a complete misfire or am I judging it too harshly? Did you figure out the specifics of the case before Hank (Russell Hornsby) and Nick did? Was there anything redeeming in Monroe’s B standalone storyline? Hits the comments below and let us know
Grimm airs on Fridays at 9pm EST on NBC