Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Haven Opening Credits

If you don't have all the eps readily available to hand, and if you don't have our fanatical devotion to chewing all the available data to a pulp, you may not have noticed the extent to which the credits changed over the last three seasons. Especially with the weird filming/airing schedule SyFy shows can have, god knows we've forgotten odds and ends with the long delay between seasons. But there were lots of changes! Annoying, sometimes miniscule ones. We have conveniently chewed them over for you, therefore! Aren't you glad. Besides, when it gets renewed (do you hear us, SyFy execs?) we'll have this all put together to come back to. Right? Of course right.

We start out with a lightning flash, which needs no major interpretation there. Something is happening in Haven, something involving forces both turbulent and widespread (a storm) and sudden, catalysing (the lightning). There's also the aspect of lightning out of a stormy but as yet not raining sky, which is sudden and causes startlement and worry. Lightning is also a powerful force that is as yet largely uncontrollable, of which there are many in Haven. From there we move on to a nice juxtaposition of both impermanence, timelessness in the form of the lighthouse that doesn't seem to change much over the years, and rapid-moving clouds indicating a swift and forceful passage of time. Haven is outside time, in a way, since it was June when the series started and July when the Christmas episode aired and very little time has passed even since then. So many events crammed into so short a span of time that may or may not even be a natural span of time. And as anyone who's experienced a number of emotionally significant events in a short time, there's always a feeling of how has it only been a couple of days/weeks since this happened. Swiftly moving time by the passage and number of events, and a complete lack of time by the calendar.

The lighthouse appears and reappears in the opening credits, but I find it interesting that the first time we see the lighthouse is right before Emily Rose's name appears next to/over a picture from the middle to late end of the last century, and possibly over a picture that's AudSarLu. It's difficult to entirely tell, it might only be a picture of a woman from the time, but given the fact that they're focusing on it and the picture isn't doing anything unnatural it seems likely. We already know she's lived at least seventy years plus, the idea of her being around since colonial times doesn't seem that odd. And the symbolism of the lighthouse, the guiding light that steers ships from danger, would seem to fit with the role AudSarLu plays in Haven. That, plus the fact that almost all of the other pictures, windows, and reflective surfaces in this opening credits sequence do strange things leads me to believe this really is Audrey. (There are other pictures, too, but most of them are drawn or woodcuts rather than photographs or mirrors.)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

House Rules Haven S3E06 Real Estate

Previously on Haven: Duke was a damsel in distress! Nathan was stoic and withdrawn and also a moron! Claire and Audrey had bonding time. Duke and Audrey had bonding time. Nathan and Jordan had... whatever the FUCK that was. Weird bonding time for everyone! And trollfaces. Lots of NOW KISS trollfaces. Audrey hit the same point with Bolt Gun Kitty and I have been at for a bit. Also an attempted lack of moral ambiguity, but that didn't go over so well, so I'm sure we'll be right back to moral ambiguity for everyone this ep. Especially with them all stuck in a goddamn haunted house together; seriously, I'm impressed none of the cast or crew tried to kill each other filming this. If you haven't seen that documentary, by the way, it's here in the last 15 minutes or so. (If that doesn't work, a partial version lives here and here.)

Before we can have moral ambiguity, however, we have to have utter cluelessness about horror tropes! This is smart, you guys, very smart, walk into the rumored-to-be-haunted house. In Haven. On Halloween. Nothing can possibly go wrong with this plan. Especially not a house that likes to eat people. That would definitely never happen in Haven, though admittedly I was wondering for awhile if they were going to pull out the man-as-house trope or if it really would be haunted and inexplicable (as compared to the Troubles, anyway). I blame the Grimm Halloween ep for that. We get a whole bunch of shots of mirrors, which in the dim lighting could potentially be paintings but of course aren't. There are a few paintings in the house, but not many for as many frames as are on the walls. And your first clue that there's something sentient here, guys, should be the fire turning on when Tina says "romantic." Ewww voyeur house I'm going to need a steel wool shower after this ep. Your SECOND clue should have been the MOVING CHAIR. Your THIRD clue is the creepy fucking music talking about reunited, and is anyone surprised that it's on the third iteration of truly disturbing behavior that Tina tries to get the fuck out of there? I thought not. Meanwhile Chad is a dumbass. Once I recover from banging my head into the wall at the people who failed Horror Genre 101, Duke's pouring liquor from a hip flask into drinks for him and Audrey. (One assumes that's spiked cider. Mmm spiked cider. Guess what was at my party over the weekend.) Because he is a GOOD friend who just keeps on being there, as this post so eloquently points out. The Herald's done up a bit for Halloween but not over the top spooky. Mostly very kitschy ghost and pumpkin type things, I assume because even the Teagues get their fill of creepyass things going on the rest of the year. (Where 'year' is a highly relative term, given that time doesn't work right in Haven, but that's a whole 'nother post.) And/or because they're trying hard to project the image of harmless old men. You'll pardon me while I hide behind the couch while Audrey neatly lampshades that implausibility for us by muttering about being drunk enough to believe anything they say. Not that they're actively lying in response to questioning right now, just that nobody is overfond of the Teagues these days. Duke's "we can try" is full of that sardonic "not enough booze in the world" tone, with a layer of subtext that says he'll stick by Audrey no matter what she decides to do with the creepy brothers. Though he probably hopes it involves them being far, far away. Awww, Duke. We know you will.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Flores Para Los Muertos Grimm S2E09 La Llorona

Previously on Grimm! Juliette was bespelled! The Captain was creepy against his will! Hank was informed! Monroe is a Wesen! Much to no one's surprise. And the Captain was desperate and Juliette has amnesia and for the amount they focused on that plotline there was surprisingly little of it. Odd juxtaposition of previouslies. I'm assuming this was meant to reflect Juliette now being informed.

Okay, before we launch into this, I will say, this episode freaked me the fuck out. I turned on all the damn lights in the living room to watch it, and I still woke up this morning feeling like I'd come off the worst in a cage match with a Siegbarste. That said, I'm deeply amused at basically guest starring in the show. The detective, with long dark hair and wearing pretty much the same clothes that I wear, referring to herself as a Balam which is the Mayan term for Jaguar (I'm half-Mayan, and have been called by that somewhat hippie nickname for well over half my life by this point, and it's a powerful symbol for the Maya and hush you all.), fighting a legend that gave me screaming nightmares as a kid? I think there were one or two other points I forget in all the staring and protesting to A that I was not a goddamn Na'vi Balam. (A: She so is. Also, you all have no idea how much of a struggle it's been for me to remember to call her Kitty and not Jag in posts, I'm just saying.) Ahem. And yes, I speak Spanish. Nervously, but fluently. So, yeah. That happened.

Yeah. I've had days like that.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Behind the Scenes at Murderboarding

Welcome to the first of a series of occasional behind-the-scenes posts! In these posts, you get to see some of what our flailing looks like instead of the nice, polished, not fannish or squeeful or ranty at all posts we put up for you the rest of the time.


We also get to tell you random things! Like, yes, we know there's been very little new content this week. That's because we've been working on putting together show pages for the top links bar. Because we love you and want you to have access to all the data at once. Also because we like being able to go back and check our own compendium of information when we're fussing at new episodes. The Grimm page is live now, as you can see; the Haven page should go up sometime in the next couple of weeks. A needs to finish her rewatch, and both of us need to run a quick immersion course in Stephen King before that happens. You can expect these pages to be updated whenever we get things to add to them!

Also in the works is a draft of that blood magic post for Grimm, which A plans to finish writing and put up after the Renard-Juliette plotline resolves to at least some degree; a study of Hank's house; and of course the La Llorona ep coming out this Friday. On the Haven side, Jeux sans frontières is slowly acquiring notes but probably won't be put together into a (massive, massive) post until after season 3 finishes airing; opening credit changes is 90% finished; and at some point we'll pull together all the information that indicates that Haven isn't even nearby to our universe. Note what we're not promising: this is A's birthday weekend, so Real Estate analysis may be delayed until Wednesday after airtime. Yes, that's Halloween. Yes, that's on purpose. Yes, we're giant dorks; you must all know this or you wouldn't be here.

You may, as usual, find a more complete list of forthcoming posts in the sidebar to your right. Please fasten your seatbelts and enjoy the ride.

Warning: We say 'fuck' a lot.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Full Court Press Haven S3E05 Double Jeopardy

Previously  on Haven: Duke was morally ambiguous! Nathan was morally ambiguous! Moral ambiguity for everyone! But Duke is adamant about not being his father's son and not treating murder as a means to a greater good, and Nathan is getting deeper and deeper into bed with a woman about whom he knows very little, and yes, that phrasing was on purpose. Meanwhile Audrey is remembering more and more about Lucy's life. Or possibly even Sarah's, depending on that barn.

And then we have cheerleaders! Their color draws our focus for the first second or two of the scene, which is both a nice way of indicating in retrospect that objectification of women (not that objectification of women is all of what cheerleaders are about at all, but in this context that is the role they play) is a significant thing in this segment and also a way of establishing cheerleader uniforms for Claire in the upcoming episode. And now the objectification of cheerleaders part comes out more strongly as the cheerleaders lose the focus of the camera, which moves instead to a man smiling at them holding a brown paper bag. There's about half a second where he could be someone who has a non-skeevy reason to smile, a parent, a coach, an alum, but no. Instead of going up to someone and talking about the event for which the cheerleaders are there he focuses again (and the camera focuses with him) on another woman in a short skirt, an older woman this time. In white, just to emphasize her purity and innocence and to contrast with what's about to happen to her. He smiles, goes up and we again get about half a second where it could be that he's going up to talk to her about something, but, no. He stands behind her, we get a series of shots of the ground around calf level and him smirking with a tiny flash of anticipation, back to the ground and the bag, back to face level, he nudges the bag closer and we see it has a cereal box with a hole in the top of it. And just in case we didn't understand what he was doing before, we get a slightly damp exhale. Ew.

And yes, that cereal box is for Dandel-Os, and no, I'm not dignifying the reference with a further response. Except possibly to ponder why we've been getting the gratuitous Dark Tower references fast and thick lately.

Les Liaisons Dangereuses Grimm S2E08 The Other Side

Previously on Grimm, the showrunners would like to remind us all of what a lovely, lovely family Renard has, and all the various ways in which it's fucked him up. Well, this is going to be a fascinating ep. And by fascinating I mean interesting. And by interesting I mean ancient Chinese curses. Poor everyone.

This week on Grimm, your friendly neighborhood recapper is under the weather with a cold. Just in time for her birthday. If I start talking about pink and purple polka-dotted elephants it's probably just the zaubertrank DayQuil. Though you really never know with this show. At least Kitty will tell me if I'm hallucinating from the cold meds, just as soon as she finishes laughing her ass off at me and telling me not to be Renard.

(I don't want to be Renard. That's far too doom-laden.)

ANYWAY. You see how this is going to go. We open with a quote from Pinocchio. "I thought of making myself a beautiful wooden marionette. It must be wonderful, one that can dance, fence, and turn somersaults." Uh-huh. I mean, there's the obvious MOW tie-ins there, but we also have whatever the Families turned Renard into, whatever his mother turned him into, whatever the Families turned Eric into, and whatever Nick's heritage is turning him into. Just at a rough count off the top of my head, and if they keep packing layers like that into their fucking pull quotes I'm going to have carpal tunnel before much longer.

Our first scene is an academic decathalon. Man, that takes me back, though I always did Knowledge Master instead of individual competition. (K: I did Olympics/Odyssey of the Mind. Is anyone surprised by either of these? No? I thought not.) (A: I did that too! Though only in grade school, KM went through high school.) Probably better for me than the decathalon is for these kids. Definitely didn't end up getting killed by a gengineering experiment. Unless I'm a zombie. From more than just this cold, that is. We get shots of the kids, who seem to be relatively stable for all that they're obviously going to be the focus of an investigation this episode. Probably a murder investigation, since robbery/homicide's been light on the robbery aspect from day one. Poor kids. We get a couple shots of a mother and the coach, because we should know by now that one or more or the mentor/parent figures is always in on it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Better The Devil You Know: Haven Profile (Howard)

Date: 10/15/2012 (updated 1/29/13)
Subject Name: Agent Howard
DOB: Unknown
Gender: Male
Age: Unknown, appears to be early to mid 40s 1/29/13: but may be assumed to be significantly older, based on identical appearance in 1955 as Sarah Vernon's commanding officer
Place of Examination: Data compiled at Chandler/Hammett Investigations offices
Occupation: Supposedly FBI supervisory agent. 1/29/13: Also supposedly military officer, rank unknown though suspected captain or colonel. Current data suggests that subject's true occupation is to be the barn's avatar/spokesperson.
Marital Status: Though wearing a wedding ring, no references to spouse have ever been made. Considering subject's unique status in relation to IN-####, such evidence should be taken as unsubstantiated.
Race: Unknown, presumed Troubled.
Classification: AG-####

Presents with: Subject is in many ways the motivating force behind certain aspects of Haven; there is no indication that either he or subject IN-#### designation Audrey Parker even existed prior to the resurgence of the Troubles (see file SK-##) and all attempts to turn up personal information through employment records lead to their doubles. As with most subjects under investigation in this case, he is fond of and prone to doublespeak. Subject displays capability with manipulation and some basic management techniques common to those used to being in charge, but nothing specific to his supposed profession. Dialectical and behavioral patterns indicate substantial schooling, either formal or otherwise, though not to such an extent that subject lacks social skills. Does not assume authority so much as is authority, regardless of the situation, including giving orders which subject IN-#### more or less followed after she was no longer his employee. 

Updated 1/29/13: Subject has been confirmed as non-human or meta-human, as demonstrated by the reaction to shots fired by subject PT-TR-####; subsequent identical reactions from the barn indicate that they may be connected by origin or protracted contamination. Subject continues to demonstrate proficiency in verbal and attitudinal management techniques, as well as maneuvering all conversations away from what may be non-sanctioned solutions to Haven's difficulties. The source of Haven's difficulties and Haven's existence also remain obfuscated due to subject's manipulations, though there is less evidence to suggest that the subject is the only individual or creature in possession of those details. Subject demonstrated preference instead to IN-####'s weaknesses in a blatant attempt to manipulate her into continuing the pattern. Due to the nature of this pattern, including when subject seems capable of appearing outside the barn, this pressure was effective since further delaying tactics on IN-####'s part would have led to the destruction of Haven. According to currently available data, subject is linked closely enough to the barn that he cannot leave it frequently or without good cause; he has stated that he appears three times: to provide IN-#### with a reason to enter Haven despite her implanted memories, to provide impetus for IN-#### to remain in Haven despite it conflicting with the duties those memories would indicate, and to reacquire her for the barn. We have no evidence which contradicts this information at this time, though as with all data given by subject we must expect some degree of inaccuracy.

Subject has stated that the barn acts as an amplifier and is tied to IN-#### and her ability to love. This is implied to be an eros-type love at several points, though it is apparent that subject XX-#### believed a filios-type love would suit the barn's needs as well. Subject has further stated that the way to end the Troubles for good is for subject IN-#### to kill someone she loves; however, subject has notably not stated what form "ending the Troubles" would take. It is well within the scope of probability that such a solution would entail the deaths of all Troubled individuals (see also subject ST-BD-#### and Crocker family ties to subject IN-####) or indeed the destruction of Haven. While a more large-scale benevolent effect is possible, given that subject IN-#### has consistently demonstrated that self-sacrificial agape-type love is of greatest benefit, we consider this only a 25% probability, with that probability likely to decrease if we learn the origins of the Troubles. This information appears to be something subject vehemently prefers that IN-#### designation Audrey Parker and her allies do not possess, possibly in response to IN-#### designation Lucy Ripley's response to reputedly learning that information prior to her entering the barn last cycle.

We consider it an 80% probability that whatever subject may have been prior to his prolonged association with the barn, he is now wholly motivated to serve an identical purpose to that of the barn, making the two beings separate more in form than in function. Further data on the source of Haven's difficulties and existence will, we expect, yield far more information on the subject's own origins than we currently possess.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Portland Geography

It's occurred to me a number of times that we don't actually have travel times within the show - for understandable reasons, since the ideal setting for the film crew may be in a different neighborhood from the one the writers intend it to be, logistically speaking. But in certain situations, timing matters, such as at the cluster of eps at the end of season 1/beginning of season 2, when we have lots and lots of things happening in several places at once, and very tight timing.

I haven't been to Portland in twenty years, give or take, but I have Googlemaps and just enough knowledge to be dangerous. If any of the assorted natives watching Grimm out there have things to add to this, feel free to drop us a comment.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

About That Half an Onion Haven S3E04 Over My Head

Onions have layers! Ogres have layers! This episode has a shitpot of layers. That's a technical term.

Previously on Haven, your friendly neighborhood recapper spent most of the episode swearing at whoever left the half an onion under her desk and saying "oh Duke honey" in woebegone tones. I suspect the rest of this season is going to involve a lot of "oh [name] honey," by and large our main three but probably not strictly limited to them. Fairly long actual previouslies this time, too, because the writers have done so much setup in these last two seasons, and SyFy's scheduling is so weird, that they'd like to remind us of all the details they think we're going to need this time out. Well, all the ones that are more thematic and aren't horrifically spoilery, or we would've seen a shot of the barn in these previouslies. But I get ahead of myself.

There's a lot of different threads being tugged in this ep, and a lot of groundwork being laid. In many respects the Trouble of the week case is a backdrop to highlight the character changes, and because we apparently can't have an entire ep of examining Vince and Dave's movements and watching Bowen chase after Bolt Gun. To which I say why the hell not, but I fully admit to being biased and wanting to chew on the Teagues' livers until they cough up all their secrets. We get closer to some of them in this ep than we have before, at least! Which means there was much keyboard smashing in place of grinding our teeth, because my dentist gets mad at me when I do that. Ahem.

Our establishing shot of Haven is nice and normal, except for that not at all horror movie-esque background music. So, not just another day in Haven, even by their standards. As we find out when it seems like we're watching a murder on-camera, only to pull back and find out it's on a police department laptop. Because no, actually, a serial killer is a new one on the town. The Troubled often kill multiple people due to their affliction, as we see this ep, but rarely are they capable of waiting days or weeks between kills, because they don't have that kind of control. We see the flash of the Guard symbol, not in its usual place which is interesting. I think the only other person with an out of place tattoo was Julia Carr from season 1, and hers pulled an appearing-disappearing trick that we also haven't seen repeated. I'll take Things I Would Still Like A Damn Explanation for $1000, Mr. Trebek. Now, the other interesting thing is that Nathan assumes that this guy isn't Troubled just because he's also a serial killer, or at least that's what he's telling Bowen. And that is for DAMN sure a false equivalency. Not least because every single person we've seen with the Guard's tattoo has a Trouble. Again, with Julia the exception and frankly she still could be, absence of proof not being the same as proof - look at how long we believed Duke was unTroubled, after all. Regardless, Nathan believes that the killings don't necessarily have a supernatural component, though they're probably tied to Audrey in some way. So he'll put his newest member of the department on the case, which is smart in a number of ways. It gives them a fresh set of eyes to look at all the various undercurrents and factions who'll be wanting answers off this case, it keeps Bowen off the supernatural cases that he's inexperienced with, and it takes Nathan's confirmation bias of "must protect Audrey" out of the picture.

Sending Out An SOS Grimm S2E07 The Bottle Imp

No previouslies today! Most likely because this episode's metaplot only serves to move along things we've established over multiple episodes, so either everyone is all caught up from one episode or another, or someone just coming into the show is going to be thoroughly lost anyway with everything else. I guess. Our quote today is from pick-a-story-about-a-genie-in-a-bottle, though damned if I know how this relates to the overall plot. Unless it's a lesson in knowing what's in bottles and jars before you fuck around with them, Renard.

Nick is demonstrating both to Juliette and to the audience how well he knows her by discussing childhood events and all the ways her father used to embarrass her as a child. Which must mean he knows her well, right, because how many of us tell embarrassing stories from our childhood to casual friends? Or at least, the ones that aren't funny to make us look good. I don't know if it's notable that she's wearing red in this scene or not, she wears red an awful lot. But she remembers, somehow, talking about the fireworks to Nick, which seems to trigger cascading memories and there is a moment of jubilation until he asks her what she remembers of just before she keeled over. And she remembers everything, and it totally makes sense, and this is when we realize that it has to be a dream because the Juliette we know would not just accept like that and say that it totally makes sense. Or at least, this is when A and I realize that. We're still not sure if this is better than our theory about her claiming to remember and being joyful as she was in the trailer teaser for this episode, and then it turns out she's been seeing Renard the whole time, or if this is worse. I'm going to go with better, actually. At least this dream sequence is over as Nick's phone alarm intrudes on his happy dream, giving me and at least one other person fits of 'why is my phone going off.' No, it's just the surround sound/headphones. And just like that, everyone's hopes for Juliette actually remembering go poof.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Captain's Log, Supplemental (part 2 of 2)

Our second part of the supplemental log picks up right after the mid-season finale. Bearing in mind, therefore, that our Captain is coming off the effects of being coin-touched and likely to be crankier, warier, and overall less happy than usual, let's dive right in. This is a strange enough case that Nick and Hank bring it straight to the Captain, because, as he says, human lipids? Are you sure? Again with the BLATANTLY OBVIOUS Wesen cases. I still want to know how Renard's shuffling those off to Nick, since for a Watsonian explanation that's the only thing I can come up with. He's covering throughout this scene, though his stance isn't as uncomfortable as it sometimes is when he's dealing with Wesen cases. Whoever this is, Renard has no contact with them and no more vested interest than normal in ensuring the safety of both human and Wesen citizens in his city. In fact, it seems likely that he wants Nick to fulfill the stereotypical enforcer role of a Grimm in this instance, since there's no indication that this was anything other than a flat-out murder. I wonder how well Wesen/Royal society in general tolerates Damonfeuers, since at least this pair are really ill-suited for human society. I also caught a tiny, tiny continuity error (though I suppose it's possible Roiz shifted hands during the split-second camera pan), in that Renard's left hand goes into his pocket on the "human lipids, are you sure?" question, only to be seen holding the paperwork as he stands behind his desk. And then his right hand's in his pocket as he holds the arson investigator's report, which, points for consistent characterization! And now you all know the depths of our obsession and may sigh at us or nod knowingly.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Captain's Log, Supplemental (part 1 of 2)

Because we're completists and also stubborn (or is that redundant?), we're finishing up our Captain logs from season 1 of Grimm by doing all the intervening episodes, the ones that don't involve a great deal of metaplot and may not involve much of our favorite Captain. There's a fair number of these, understandably so since last season was a lot of world-building and establishing what the monster of the week cases look like before diving headfirst into the mythology of the world, as this season seems more inclined to do. We have, as a result, opted to split them into two parts for your reading pleasure! In this part, we have 1x05-07 (Danse Macabre, Three Bad Wolves, Let Your Hair Down), 1x09 (Of Mouse and Man), and 1x11 (Tarantella). Part two will involve the four post-coin episodes, as that's a major time, plot, and character marker.

Someday if we're feeling really masochistic we might go through these for full ep analyses, but honestly they don't do that much to advance the metaplot, and since that's what we like chewing on the most, that's what you're getting.

I will note, before we chew on the few Renard scenes we get in Danse Macabre, that this ep is singular in being the only case (to date) in the which the originating case didn't have Wesen perps, just a primary suspect who happens to be Reinegen. I would love to see more of that, though I'm also fond of Wesen victims/family members turning up, as in Bad Moon Rising, and asking for help. I cannot wait for Wesen to start turning up at the precinct and asking for Nick specifically because word's finally gotten out that he's a Grimm and a cop and not going to kill innocents. Because that will give Renard shitfits as he works out how to cover it up. Look, I never said I was a nice person.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Better the Devil You Know: Haven Profile (Bowen)

Date: 10/07/2012 (updated 11/3/2012) (updated and closed 12/3/2012)
Subject Name: Thomas Bowen
DOB: 01/15/1976
DOD: 09/??/2010
Gender: Male
Age: 36
Place of Examination: Data compiled at Chandler/Hammett Investigations offices
Occupation: Police Officer
Marital Status: Single
Race: Unknown, presumed human 11/3/12: Unknown, presumed Troubled
Classification: NA-#### 11/3/12: classification unknown at this time, likely class BD, MD, or SR

Presents with: Subject displays competence in most field procedures regarding pursuit and
apprehension of suspects according to police standards. Although employment with the Boston Police Department was verified by phone call, as previously demonstrated by subject IN-#### designation Audrey Parker this may not be sufficient to confirm his status as a Boston Police detective. Regardless, he is conversant in and confident of police procedures enough to carry out witness interviews and apprehend suspects. Subject affirms a lower-class upbringing but demonstrates considerable secondary school education [can someone confirm this?]. Colloquial/dialectical speech patterns have been observed, including Boston accent.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Irezumi: Grimm Akira Kimura's Tattoos

The first thing to note about Akira Kimura's tattoos is that they're fucking backwards. I didn't notice this immediately upon watching, I was too busy watching the actual episode, but when I started analyzing I automatically tried to read the hiragana, which is when I noticed they were all backwards. The only way this makes sense at all to me is that the transfer sheet on which the tattoos were originally inked was put on backwards, or someone forgot to reverse it initially. Either way, this caused about a minute or three of confusion when I started translating before I remembered to flip it. Then it caused about a minute or five of swearing. The second thing to know, not to note, in order to translate properly is that not all of those are pictogram symbols. The third thing to note is that Japanese is my least proficient language currently; fortunately we have eagle-eyed readers whose skills are much less rusty than mine! See the bottom for one reader's interpretation.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Devil You Don't Know: Haven Profiles (Arla Cogan aka Bolt Gun unsub)

Note: This profile supersedes all previous profiles for this subject. Earlier versions are available for record-keeping and reference purposes only. Much of the data from this profile is identical to the 12/3/12 profile, differing mainly in gendered pronouns, though we have of course taken pains to update the data as relevant.
Date: 1/31/2013
Subject Name: Arla Cogan
DOB: Unknown, presumed approx 1955
Gender: Female (though has assumed male form frequently and at length)
Age: Actual age approximately mid-50s, apparent age has varied from late 20s to mid 60s
Place of Examination: Data compiled at Chandler/Hammett Investigations offices
Occupation: Unknown
Marital Status: Complicated. Married to James Cogan, though has been separated from him due to outside interference for 27 years. Unclear if either subject or her husband are currently alive.
Race: Troubled
Classification: SR-BD-####

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Trust Issues Grimm S2E06 Over My Dead Body

Before we begin this incredibly dangerous and painful beguine, I should note that we're pulling from a multitude of source material for this one. The ep, of course, and all previous eps. The deleted scene from this ep, which if you were following any actor or writer Twitter feeds you should know about but hey, not everyone's on Twitter. This TVGuide interview in which Roiz talks at some length about how he sees Renard and the current/immediately upcoming issues our good Prince is facing, and the original Grimm fairytale for this one. Because we are nothing if not compulsively completist.

(I should also note that I intend to do part of this analysis using a speech recognition program to save my wrists, so any patchwork you see here is the difference between my spoken voice and my writing voice. HAVE FUN.)

Because this quote and its placement are so incredibly ominous, I'm going to spend some time talking just about that and about the Grimm fairytale from whence it came. First off with the placement we see that Mia the mystery woman can be considered a snake, which is on par with a description of anything that's ever come out of the Families. At least in the old Christian fairytale sense, though as we'll see, this is not the only sense you can take this fairytale in. Snakes are also purveyors of wisdom and knowledge, and whether that's good or bad comes down to how you use it. (Aren't you proud I avoided the Hamlet quote? I'm proud of me.) So just on the surface of it we have the double-edged sword of wisdom, and since potions and poisons have played a significant role so far in Grimm it's safe to assume this ep will also see an emphasis on such things. Venomous snakes, potions and poisons that make one thing seem like another.

Now, in the fairytale itself, the snake is almost a footnote. It's the MacGuffin, the driving force behind events, but it's only there to get things moving. As the hired assassin snakes are only here to get things moving for the queen snake (in metaphor only, as far as we know), as Mia is only here to provide a nudge down the garden path for Renard's plans and also for the effects of that potion he took. The part that scares me shitless for just about everyone is the one where it talks about in resurrection, some portion of a person's soul is lost. Now, what the fairytale does is a fairly literal form of soul-removal, in which the people resurrected become sociopaths, at least going by modern definitions. The potion Juliette was dosed with caused all her memories of Nick to be removed (and was called "spirit elsewhere"); the one Renard took has affected his ability to control his emotions; and the one Monroe takes in this ep mimics death, the very thing this fairytale tells us the dangers of fighting.

So we have ALL OF THIS informing this episode, and with that in mind, let's begin the episode itself. We open on a private plane in a private hangar, possibly not even at PDX but at a smaller/private airport, though I don't know the area well enough to be sure. The only two people we see around Mia as she walks out in her designer cream-colored suit (dollars to donuts that's a fuck you I'm a Royal fashion rules don't apply to me, at least in the Hollywood sense of fashion rules, since it's a bit late to be wearing something that close to pure white) are both servants. One airport attendant and one man who's might also be the pilot but judging by his stance and the way he clears the tarmac with a glance, tucking his suit coat around a holster before Mia gets off, probably also a bodyguard. Funny, though, she doesn't seem to keep him around much while she's actually conducting business. I suspect that's on the surface of it a statement of trust in Renard's abilities to keep her from harm while she's in his canton, but also a couple different jabs at him. One that he doesn't have anyone capable of hurting her physically, and he won't do so himself, and two that despite the upheaval and what might be considered proper protocol, this isn't a city worth the time and trouble of having a bodyguard follow her around. More pragmatically, she probably doesn't want to deal with loyalty issues while she's here.

Bad Company Haven S3E03 The Farmer

Previously on Haven, your friendly neighborhood profiler suspects it wasn't the kidnapping that traumatized Audrey so much as the knowledge of who she was before. And we just love how everyone sees Crocker and no one sees Duke.

Joggers in the woods! And a biker, by the look of it. Possibly a public park or some other place where joggers often go, only with a typical New England set of greenery. Between the nature of the show and the minor key music we know that Greg isn't going to make the caterer's. Or the wedding. By the time she picks up the shoe we totally know something gross is about to happen whether or not we've seen the preview scene. And indeed, she steps on a pair of lungs. Ew. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Love Is In The Air: Nick and Juliette

One of the most notable things about Grimm is its dedication to the growth of its characters. And this phenomenon of communication. The two most notable things about Grimm are its dedication to the growth of its characters, the phenomenon of communication, and the equal respect ... among the most notable things... I'll come in again, shall I?

While Nick is quite clearly the protagonist of the show, the first thing we see him doing is buying an engagement ring with which to surprise his girlfriend. This has nothing to do with either of his main roles in the show, neither Grimm nor cop, and places his role as boyfriend (and possibly later fiance?) in a position of equal weight to both by making it the first thing we know about him. There is a person in his life whom he loves very much, and would like to spend the rest of his life with.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

When You're At Home: Sergeant Wu

This is the beginning of an actual series of posts, I know, my god. Grimm focuses a great deal on people's homes and sanctuaries (look, if I have to have bad show puns, I'm picking the one we're not analyzing) and the difference between the two, but a lot of it's very background detail. They put a lot of effort, as we've seen when tearing apart the scenes in Renard's condos, into set details. And such effort shall be rewarded with nitpicky, detail-oriented blog posts! Much to absolutely nobody's surprise.

While I'd like to get one of these out a week, I can't guarantee it - we're saving Nick and Monroe's places for last because we've had so many shots of their places that it's going to be a massive undertaking. This week we begin with Wu, since frankly we have very little information about him aside from his wisecracking ways. He's the sort of cop who hides his horror behind humor and prefers to keep work and personal lives separate. I'm curious to know if that's going to become at least an internal conflict as Nick's Grimm work begins to feature more prominently and, well, knowledgably within the precinct. Since Hank now knows, the next likely candidate to be brought in (from work) is Renard, and we all know how hilarious THAT'S likely to be. Which will leave Wu out in the cold, so I have to assume they're going to do something there eventually.

At any rate! We begin near the end of Island of Dreams, as Nick brings Wu home after a long day of wacky blood magic cookies and hallucinations. Nick and Wu are sitting on the couch, Wu in off-duty clothes for I think the first time. Black jeans, black t-shirt, black or navy flannel bathrobe. The couch is dark, I'd guess some kind of a hunter green or black, it's hard to tell in the low light. At first it looks shiny, like pleather, probably not real leather, or not intended as such unless it was a curb find/secondhand buy. Once we get a couple more shots it's obviously clothe of some kind and that was just a trick of the lighting. A two person couch, indicating that Wu doesn't do a lot of entertaining, it's about the right size for him to curl up on and sleep. Or the right size to be a Wu-sized sofa bed, since we never actually see his bedroom. It's also a much smaller apartment/house than we've seen anyone else have, reflecting his lower income as a sergeant rather than a detective, police captain with old money, or independent artisan like Monroe. The lighting is low but warm, and the lamps at either end of the couch don't match. One is a little taller, a bronze or wood finish, and the other is a little squarer with a gold finish. The blanket over the back looks like a Pendleton knockoff, both a nod to the area and a nod to Wu's income again. The whole apartment very much looks like something that he's cobbled together out of odds and ends, but they're his odds and ends in a way that suits him.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Better The Devil You Know: Haven Profiles (Claire Callahan)

Note: As of 12/8/12, this file is considered closed. All future sightings matching the physical description of Claire Callahan are considered those of subject SR-BD-#### and should be treated with due caution. Believed at this time to have been murdered and skinned in the aftermath of BGK-Bowen's 'death.' May have been questioned prior to her death; regardless, subject SR-BD-#### has possession of Callahan's notes and case files. Updates to file SR-BD-#### are on hold until further data presents itself.

Date: 10/03/2012
Subject Name: Claire Callahan
DOB: 12/28/83
DOD: 10/??/10
Gender: Female
Age: 28
Place of Examination: Data compiled at Chandler/Hammett Investigations offices
Occupation: Psychiatrist.
Marital Status: Presumed single.
Race: Unknown, presumed human
Classification: CB-####

Presents with: Obfuscating torrents of babble, some of which seems intended to overwhelm and mask information and some of which seems intended to create an impression counter to her actual emotional state. A preference for group work over solo work, indicative of a tendency to groupthink and, at extremes, prize conformity over independent thought. Subject's strong desire to prove herself, particularly to an older, more experienced woman she admires, overrides her schooling, indicating a lack of and desire for strong female figures in early childhood. Assumes authority easily and largely in the sense of presenting herself as having authority which she may or may not in fact possess, for reasons unknown, perhaps contrived or perhaps psychological and unintended. Places high value on appearances, not because she disbelieves in substance beyond that but because she views it as a necessity to her self-image and self-esteem. Insufficient data as yet to determine if she places as high a value on others' appearance as she does on her own, though it seems safe to speculate that some of those beliefs will seep into her behavior regardless of what she believes she "should" feel.

Observations: This is to be regarded as a preliminary profile only, as all indications are that subject intends to remain closer to the action in Haven for the foreseeable future. However, we have extrapolated the following based on available data. Easily manipulable, the subject is inexperienced in the finer details of hiding her emotions. Were Audrey Parker, Nathan Wuornos, and Duke Crocker (see files IN-####, PT-TD-####, and ST-BD-#### respectively) not absorbed with other issues at this time, they would be more immediately suspicious of subject's actions and motives. (Additionally, none of the three have knowledge of the Guard, to the best of our knowledge here at Chandler/Hammett.) Subject's use of torrents of words (not dissimilar to Crocker in that regard) to distract from her motives and true feelings are an amateur distraction tactic, indicative of an inability to strategize long-term and therefore unable to anticipate others doing so as well. Under other circumstances, this would not be so effective. Unfortunately for those she works with, this is an effective delaying tactic due to the rapid acceleration of the Troubles and Parker's limited timeframe. It is highly likely that even if subject is not working for the Guard, she is still working for someone; this insertion into daily police and Troubles business reeks of larger-scale contrivance.

Subject's preference for groupthink and conformity may indicate a need for outside validation and/or a fear of being wrong and any subsequent rejection by a collective, somewhat out of the realm of human norms. If subject were provided with a strong, healthy authority figure to follow, she would probably excel both personally and professionally; unfortunately she seems to have fallen into an abusive situation and probably places most of her self-worth on whether or not the authority approves of her progress toward his/their goals. It is likely that subject believes any and all errors or setbacks to be her fault in some way, and works to mitigate the damage to said goals on her own rather than admit to requiring assistance. Subject hasn't the fairest idea who she is.

History (Clinical): Subject agreed to an interview, which she then attempted to turn back on the interviewer, to little success. Subject has declined follow-up appointments, citing her busy professional schedule.
History (Family): Unknown at present, though it seems likely subject will be possessed of another attempt to connect by talking about her (and others') private life at length. Current speculation runs to upper or upper-middle class parents, only child, and knowing little to no physical poverty in her early life. Emotional neglect or abuse possible to likely, either in early life or in recent past, or both. Given the assumed connections to the Guard, recent activities would make it highly likely that this is her stand-in for any family group, and that she has no current ties to her childhood family unless they are also members of the Guard.
History (Medical): Unknown. Subject presents as in relatively good physical condition for her sedentary profession. Given subject's focus on physical appearance, she probably works out regularly, though preferring appearance over capability. May be prone to fad exercise programs and diets.
Recommended Action: Shift to Miranda. Not to be trusted.