Wednesday, January 2, 2013

When You're At Home: Monroe

So the downside to these last two parts of this series that we have to either cherry-pick eps for close examination, or do something sufficiently massive that it gets split up into multiple parts and might not be done before the hiatus. Now, I'm sure y'all wouldn't mind the first one, but I mind the second, if nobody else does, so I'm going the cherry-picking route. We'll start with a couple s1 eps and move along to some s2 eps, with special focus on La Llorona and Monroe's Halloween decorations, because dear god the man must have a separate storage unit for his holiday shenanigans. We're not doing the Christmas decorations because that would make this into a multi-part post for sure. Oh Monroe.

Let's start, then, with a relatively early s1 episode! Three Bad Wolves, in which Monroe's home is invaded by Hap. And Angelina. And Orson. Poor Monroe. But it gives us, among other things, a good sense for what he wants his home to look like, and the ways in which other people being in his space is very upsetting. We get a brief exterior shot of the house to start with, and it's definitely smaller than Nick's. Possibly smaller than Hank's, come to that, and again I have to ask: does the Portland PD pay its detectives that well? Really? It's well-kept but nothing really remarkable about it, not even down to the lawn. Monroe is Just Folks. He swears. Nothing to see here, move along. When we switch to an interior shot, it's of the hallway that leads... looks like between the kitchen and living room, we can see counters behind Hap. The coat hooks on the left hold familiar coats, including the not at all ironic one with a fleece-lined hood. (Heh. Heh. Sheep fleece. Thanks, guys.) There are a couple lamps with nifty cutout patterns on the right wall, illuminating what may be one of the many clocks but I think might be some kind of humidistat or similar thingie. (Why you would need that in Portland I don't know. Is it still Portland? Then it's at least mildly humid.) I will establish right now that I'm not going to try and count all the damn things. Speaking of, there are at least two for-sure visible clocks in this initial shot: one a bit beyond the two metallic things and one in the back over a trash can. Our impression is of clutter, but controlled clutter: everything is in a place that Monroe knows about and Hap please don't mess with his system. HAP.

Ahem. Moving down the hallways as they come toward the camera, we see one more clock that comes into frame/focus with Monroe, just in case we'd forgotten his occupation. One of the reasons I picked this ep is because Hap looks around a lot, and so we get some shots of what he's looking at. Our next non-motion shot flips the angle so we're looking the other way down the hall at them standing in what appears to be Monroe's workroom, which is plainly just an excuse to have us know what it looks like, since they move to the other side of the front of the house and the living room after that. There are smallish windows in here, and I'd bet that at least some of them are supposed to be northern or eastern exposures, given the diffuse lighting. A number of small but powerful lamps, well set for Monroe to do work without bumping his upper body on anything big and clunky; two clocks that we can see, one over each Blutbad's shoulder. Hap's looks like a miniature wall-mounted grandfather clock sort of thing, and Monroe's is nautically themed, a ship's wheel surrounding the clock face. They even seem to be set to the same time - I'm sure Monroe takes pains to have his clocks set to the same minute, second if possible. (I question how the fuck he sleeps through the hourly chiming, but you can get used to a lot. Maybe he doesn't go to bed before midnight?) I think that's a piece of driftwood on the wall adjacent to Monroe's nautical clock, which speaks to some kind of a seafaring theme that we haven't really heard anything about in his backstory. The curtains are white and not particularly opaque, presumably the bushes outside accomplish that task. Once I stop giggling over Monroe having shrubberies, I notice the wallpaper: two greens and white striped, sort of a cool forest pattern. Which along with the bushes follows from his talk of his family coming from the Black Forest; it's a good, subtle reminder of things he may be more used to. Last, the furniture is all dark woods and there's a bunch of library-fronted cabinet type stuff I can barely see around Monroe. I'm sure it holds all kinds of useful things for his work, but can I have it? Please? Some kind of a green-covered book on the shelves (?) in the center of the shot, and something that looks like a level, maybe.

More blurry motion shots, including one of the front door which we'll come back to yet this episode, and hey look, it's the living room! Heavier curtains over the front window, another wall-mounted clock, a very pretty grandfather clock that Hap needs to stop messing with, a collection of knick knacks on shelving in between including what I believe is some kind of stereo system. And a... cow figurine? Monroe, is that your reminder of things you can't eat anymore? Books, of course, not that we can get a good look at what any of them are. And a couple framed prints of barren branches, which is a theme we've mostly seen in Adalind's house, actually. That's. Interesting. I mean, I suspect it's intended to convey more Black Forest themes, but it may also convey repression and lack of connections - something Adalind definitely suffers from, and something Monroe is slowly coming out of. I'll be interested to see if those change over the course of the episodes!

I spend awhile falling over laughing about how Monroe keeps what looks like some kind of oldschool Rock'em Sock'em Robot on his grandfather clock. I mean, really, Monroe? And we get no more of the living room just now, so we'll follow them into the kitchen! Which we actually get almost none of for a good minute and a half due to the focus being on Monroe and Hap as Hap nearly leaves: light greenish walls to re-emphasize the forest themes while the light part of that reminds us that Monroe is by and large on Nick's side. Greenish fridge that totally is out of the 70s and Monroe is the fridge that old or are you that much of a hipster? No clocks, notably, that I can see at first pass. Counters that are fairly clear of clutter, overall what little we see of the kitchen in this scene reinforces impressions from those earlier eps that I've skipped that Monroe's kitchen is a workplace. It's a direct contrast to other kitchens we've seen, from Renard to Hank to Adalind. Monroe has chosen to be the kind of Blutbad who makes extensive and skilled use of his kitchen, and we see that reflected in all the scenes across Grimm where he's cooking or feeding people or having drinks with Nick.

What we do get is a brief look at the living room through the doorway. A nice leather chair on rollers, facing the fireplace (which has three? four? lots! of clocks on its mantel), a small end table with the cross-braced folding legs that I always find too wobbly for my liking. Lamp and some kind of small something or another said table. Pictures or possibly plaques of some kind on the wall to the right of the mantel, definitely a painting of some forest scene above, and for one of the first times I notice a ceiling light fixture in ANYONE'S living room. Not that it's on, but at least one exists. We flip back to the kitchen and see a cutting board and some kind of a blender or juicer out on the counter Hap sits by; also Monroe keeps stools in the kitchen for sitting on. (Which we knew, but keeping track of the details, here.) There might be a thermos or similar on the counter by Monroe's left but we don't get a good look at it yet. First Nick and Angelina have to fight! I should note, here, that this is good consistency, the park still across the street from the pilot. Hi park! Hi Nick getting knocked around!

One ad break later we come back to the living room, and get a semi-clear view of the dining room beyond it, which we didn't when Hap and Monroe were in the doorways between kitchen and living room earlier on account of the kitchen being on the back side of the house. I will get to layout after I finish this ep, because right now it looks like the dining room is the frontmost of the dining/living room combo, which is just odd to me. At any rate, surrounding Angelina's leather-clad badass self we have another clock, a clock on/in a bell jar (?) on the bookshelf in front of the pass-through wall. A telescope which is nominally pointed at the sky, though if Monroe's house is surrounded by those tall bushes I question what the hell he can actually see with it. There's a decanter and some kind of bizarre wire thing that looks like a giant upside-down whisk on the pass-through wall, and we can see books in the bookshelf, which appears to be the sort with doors that lift from the bottom. A globe way beyond, on the window seat, and possibly more books. And, of course, the chair which looks scavenged from a yard sale and frankly not comfortable at all. When we pull out we finally get a good grasp on the layout, which is to say: living room to your left as you enter in the front door, with the dining room beyond it. There are two entrances to the kitchen, one from the dining room and one from the living room, and a long hall that goes down to the kitchen. To your right as you enter the front door is Monroe's workshop. Presumably somewhere on this level is a bathroom, but since heroes don't take shits we can only assume. On the wall to the right of the doorway between living room and dining room are still more coat hooks, which, Monroe, how many goddamn coats and coat hooks do you NEED. The leather chair in this lighting looks red (excuse me, I have to rummage for the surprised-face jar, I replaced it with the believing-you face for Yuletide) and the couch is a very 70s mustard yellow. Monroe, you are SUCH a hipster. On the living room wall toward the front of the house is what looks like one of those branchy lamps, which is affixed to the wall rather than being a floor standing set. Despite all the pacing around and cutting back and forth, or maybe because of it, it's a bit tough to get any other useful information out of this scene. Below those lamps is what looks like a corkboard with a bunch of notes stuck in, probably Monroe keeping track of household things since I'd assume his work-work notes are kept in his workroom. He's that kind of person, requiring a system. Once Hap is finally standing between Angelina and Nick we see there's a cushion in the leather chair, aww, Monroe, do you have lumbar back issues? Or are you just padding your weak spot? (If the latter that is some damn impressive detail work.) And there's definitely some kind of chair or loveseat in front of the big front window, which looks like it's holding afghans/throws/clothes of some kind. We get very little else of any use, except to note the blue bicycle leaning up in front of the big front window on the porch. A torchlike porch light (say that five times fast) and I think those are meant to be crabapple trees? And we'll get an even better view of the front door stained glass in a bit here, so, moving on!

We get a cut of Nick staring at the Blutbad's weak spot to Angelina tucking Hap in on the couch with what I can only imagine is a handknit afghan. Yes, thank you for the not at all subtle message there. Monroe keeps some magazines that look like the sort of things with home decorating/cooking/etc things in them on his coffee table. In a tray designed for same. Beyond, adjacent to the green bookshelf from last scene we see a dark brown bookshelf that doesn't appear to have any doors on it, but has any number of books. It's worth noting that I haven't seen a single paperback; these all look like at most the younger cousins of Renard's collection and possibly some that are contemporaneous with those books. They do, however, look like they see use a fair amount - careful use, but use nonetheless. Tucked in the other corner along that wall we have the TV, which I think is a decent flatscreen, if I'm remembering right between this and SotH. A floor lamp in front of it, and an eight-pointed star on the wall behind it which looks like it might hold a clock. The walls, which I can now see better from this angle, are browns and greens and striped similarly to Monroe's workroom, with a [plate rail?] running near the ceiling to divide the stripes from the strip of white at the top. (Or cream, or eggshell, or whatever we're calling it.) I'm not sure but I think this and the other might be wallpaper. The ceiling looks to be exposed hardwood with rafters, yay! The rest of this scene is all closeups and seduction until our lovewolves (which is like lovebirds only way more deadly) go out for a run, at which point we get one brief look in at Hap. There's a baseball in a green dish on the coffee table, and a bunch of clocks on the aforementioned dark brown bookshelf. Hello front door pane! A wolf in the forest, though you could honestly fanwank that to be a fox, too, if you really wanted. It's sufficiently stylized.

The next morning! Hap wakes up! The murder scene is good for maybe two things: one, it establishes the staircase to second floor as leading straight up from the entryway, and two, we see the front door mat inside the door. I assume poor Monroe gets that replaced, after. We move on to the crime scene with our cop crew and I take a moment to snicker over Hank being framed in the doorway of the workroom with all the foresty themes, on account of do you remember that man's bedroom? Yeah. In daylight, the curtains look to be some kind of inoffensive gray-green color that fits right in with the forest theme. And that's all for that scene!

Next stop, Monroe being REALLY ANGRY in his workroom. It's notable that that's the first place he goes when he needs to calm down, and that he's so furious that he throws a clock, which is probably a symbol of his domestication to him. We can see more clearly in this scene that the front windows also have panes of stained glass in the top section, which appears to continue the forest theme of the side panels in the front door. Unfortunately, because this clip is so action-focused I can't get a lot out of it other than a lot of dark wood furniture which presumably holds any number of work-related items. But next we get Monroe brooding in his chair with a glass of (white, notably) wine. The thing that I thought was a loveseat earlier turns out to be a window seat with no arms and what looks to be a substantial amount of storage space underneath. When he gets up to let Nick in, the door to his workroom is mostly closed, probably to hide the mess he made earlier. We also see, below the corkboard and wall lamps, a small end table that seems to serve as keeper for mail, bills, etc. And then we get a clear shot of the big storage/shelving unit in daylight, and yes, that's some kind of audio system (though I don't see any speakers, presumably they're hiding behind some of the closed sections? we'll see when we get to his date with Rosalee) and also? His bike helmet. Monroe you are such an adorable homebody. We also see more clearly that there's a small end table on the other side of the grandfather clock. And hey! That's not a lamp with branching bits. Those are leaves, brass of some kind. BECAUSE WE NEEDED MORE FOREST IN HERE. Sigh, you guys. Most of the wood doesn't quite match, though it's all similar shades; this is undoubtedly deliberate so that he can display whatever clocks he wants and have it not be hideously clashing.

Speaking of hideous clashes, let's go to the scene with the Bauerschwein. Nothing particularly new here save to note that Orson comes from the workroom side, that being the way one can hide behind the front door. I'd expect that's a deliberate choice of layout on Monroe's/the set designer's part, depending on whether you're emphasizing Doylist or Watsonian choices here. We can see some cluttered shelves in the workroom behind Orson, but alas, nothing concrete. A stool with a back on and one of Monroe's old-man sweaters draped over in front of his main work area, trays of gadgets and gears in all probability, a big adjustable lamp and at least one project (possibly the clock he threw earlier?) sitting on the workbench. Table. Thing. I facepalm at how Orson's head is covering up the wolf in the stained glass pane and the rest of the scene is all closeups on the actors, as you'd expect.

And our last scene of this very Monroe-and-his-house oriented episode is the last scene period! It is, however, mostly Monroe angsting, as well he might, but we see that he's a Mac user and he's sitting in his workroom with it and what I'd assume is the broken clock. Oh honey. And the very last pullback is at a high angle designed to emphasize that Monroe still lives half in the woods, half in civilization. Just in case we missed that the first half dozen times they anviled us with it.

Next up in the round of cherrypicking: Organ Grinder! Because dinner. And reasons. But first, hey look, it's Monroe's kitchen! Nick and Monroe standing in the same doorway that Monroe and Hap were in Three Bad Wolves, and we can more clearly see the hallway that comes down from the living room, just to the side of the front door. Yay! I like layout confirmation. The thing that might have been a thermos turns out to be a French press, and absolutely nobody is surprised. We can also see, in the better light, several pictures running up the side of the cabinets above the coffee machine, all of which look to be of various places in Germany. At a guess and running by the architecture, anyway, though I swear I should know where the bottom one is from. There's also what looks like a cup full of used wine corks, which raises several questions: a) how much wine does Monroe go through, b) how long did it take him to collect those, and c) why the fuck IS he collecting them? I estimate a good 10, total, based on what I can see plus whatever's buried. Weird. There's a bit of blue around at least one of the windows (probably all of them) in this room and along the backsplash area of the walls, between counters and bottoms of cabinets; dark woodwork and what appears to be another ceiling light fixture. It looks like there's a bunch of wooden spoons/spatulas/other such tools in a canister on the far counter behind Monroe. When we pan around to face Nick we can see different canisters and containers, a pitcher for cream and a canister probably of sugar cubes or coffee grounds. Oh, and a toaster! Also in that avocado green. And a big rough-carved island in the center. We move further into the kitchen to see the sink at the back window and the stove/oven on the side that was blocked by the wall before. Lots of counter space, a couple sponges and a pump bottle of soap. Also I bet the canister by the side of the sink is for compost, because Monroe? Totally the kind of Portland hipster who composts. (Also I recognize it from a friend's house. What.) Behind Nick on top of the fridge (which appears slightly less horribly green in fake-natural light, maybe it was picking up color from the cabinets earlier) is at least one clock and possibly a clock radio? And some kind of metal bin thing, I have no idea what that's about. Overall, yes, this is very, very much a working kitchen. I bet I could walk in and know where things are NOT out of overanalyzing but out of sensible design principles. (Whaaaat.) There's a basket of food behind Monroe and beyond the possibly-compost bin, I can't tell if that's fruit or bread of some variety. I think the latter, on account of that looks like a napkin draped over to keep things fresh. And then Nick has to run off to his case of the week!

We don't see Monroe again at his place until the most awkward dinner ever, only to be topped by another awkward dinner which we'll visit in the last post of this series. Monroe has very lovely blue ceramic plates! And more white wine. One assumes that he drinks only white wines, on account of red. The dining room in this lighting appears a faintly sickly green. This Will Be Important Later, if I don't severely miss my guess. Monroe's serving family style from a couple bowls, aww, and cooked veggie pasta of some kind. The place setting looks like the fork's on the right side of the plate, which is a bit odd but not unheard of. (Personally I'm more surprised that Monroe doesn't eat European style, fork in his left hand, than by his place setting.) This actually doesn't at all resemble the dining room we saw glimpses of in Three Bad Wolves, nor is it the same as the place where Monroe and Rosalee have their date later on, in Over My Dead Body. Best guess? This is a dining area off the kitchen, probably on that side of the house, and given the more bacheloresque feel to it it's where Monroe takes most of his meals. At any rate! There's a cabinet of some sort on the wall above Monroe's head, along with some lower along the wall, and also some drawers; this is part of what inclines me to say this is off the kitchen since it clearly has storage space similar to a kitchen. There's a closet door (or maybe the basement door) beyond Monroe, which, yay, the man DOES have some damn closets. There's a bookshelf that Nick's blocking a good third of, and at this point I will stop to note that with the exception of the big tall one by the granddaddy clock in the living room, all of Monroe's bookshelves are half-height. SWM isn't a small guy, which makes me wonder about a Watsonian reason for this; from a set designer standpoint you don't want to overwhelm the camera shot with lots and lots of big tall shelves. I would bet, though, that Monroe does this so as to have more surface area to cover with clocks. Of which there are at least three maybe four in this room. There's a binder or two on the shelves, maybe some kind of a plant? And hey, someone remembered to put in some outlets! Wall sconces for his lighting, very inconspicuous. Monroe's chair is again on coasters, he really seems to like that in his chairs for comfort (as opposed to the stool in his workroom which is highly utilitarian). Hard to say about Nick's chair with the coat covering it up, but it might be a match. The bookshelf here is also on wheels, I note as I look around for such things, and at this point I wonder if that's something Monroe prefers or if they like that for set design 'cause it makes their lives easier. No clue. And that's about all I have for you out of this scene, because most of the camera work is cutting back and forth to Nick and Monroe's faces.

We get a prolonged look at Monroe's bedroom in Thing With Feathers when Nick calls to ask about the Klaustreich. Monroe has a giant wooden headboard that I would not be surprised to learn is a family heirloom/he made himself, all the better for displaying as many clocks as one can possibly fit on top of it, my dear. (Look, you knew I was going to make that joke sometime, at least it's out of the way now.) There's at least a couple blocking our view of Monroe on his bedside whatever-that-is, plus half a dozen or more on the headboard (some are stacked in front of others, making it even harder to get an accurate count), and at least one on a dresser or something on the far side of the room from the camera. The whole room, what we're allowed to see of it in this scene, is done up in hardwoods that go up the walls so far it feels like the inside of a cabin even though it's not; we get peeks at a yellowish or cream base color to the walls, possibly a red color lower down though that could also be a red leather book or something on his nightstand. It also has the effect of visually tying Nick and Monroe together, since Nick is in a cabin right now. Monroe has light bluish bedclothes, and a cream/white nightshirt, giving him a very Old World feel. I half-expect him to jam on a nightcap and slippers and a dressing gown. Oh look, another clock tucked behind the lamp on his nightstand. Monroe also sleeps habitually in the center of the bed, habits of a confirmed bachelor and/or someone who's been single for a long time. (Fandom, if you do nothing with this the first time he and Rosalee share a bed, I will be disappoint.) When we get a top-down shot of Monroe it looks to me like there's a pair of dark-colored sleep pants under there, so fine, no nightshirt that goes down to his ankles in true Old World style. Probably. Also his bed and comforters look snuggly. I wish to steal them. Blutbad optional, I know there are people in fandom who want him more than I do.

Ahem. Next up we have Over My Dead Body! Mostly for the date scene with Rosalee, which gives us an excellent look at Monroe's dining room, but also to check through quick and see if there have been any notable changes since first season. So our first shot, in among all the dates/dinners being set up, is of Monroe coming out with wine glasses to finish setting the table and then going back to the kitchen to putter. The blue ceramic will apparently do for date night with Rosalee, which means either he doesn't have super-nice china or he's trying not to overwhelm her, and I would bet more on the latter than the former given how many other things Monroe's got that are Old World and inherited in feel. That said, the blue ceramic are perfectly pretty plates for a date. Flowers and candles on the table, aww. And a clock or two barely visible in an alcove off to the right. Red walls for his formal dining area, which says so many things about Monroe and his issues with control I can't even. From testing himself to reminding himself why he should keep it under control to giving himself ONE of the safer things that makes him feel like a real Blutbad. Orangey-red candles, too, and he has a thing for certain red foods, if you remember the beets-grinding. Fork and knife again on the right-hand side of the plate, knife on the inside and I really have no idea what that etiquette means and I should. This is going to bother me; if I get a chance before this goes live I'll look it up and otherwise I leave it to our readers to inform me. (Wiki swears this is traditional in Turkey, Greece, and Armenia, which makes NO SENSE with Monroe's stated background what the fuck.) Ladle and slotted spoon and I think that's cast iron? Pout, I wanna know these things. At any rate, we can tell by his actions that Monroe does cook for himself a fair amount, and has a certain level of confidence in said cooking. I have no idea what's up with all the random French this season; maybe he's from the Alsace-Lorraine area or some of his relatives are.

When we come back from Angelina having Issues at the bar and credits, our first shot of the adorable couple is through the pass-through archway in the living room, positioned so that we can see one of the clocks (the one he'll shortly be squeeing over to Rosalee) and some sheet music on a quite lovely stand off to the left. I can't read the music, it's too blurry, but it looks like there's too many staves on it for it to be a solo cello part, though it might be the right number for it to be a piano score under a cello solo? Speaking of which, in the eps I've done so far I haven't seen the cello stored anywhere, you know, obvious. And cellos are kind of big and obvious and sorry, props department, you can't just take it off the set when it's not in use, nitpicky fangirls like us notice. (K: He keeps it at Gold's house. Duh.) (A: Dammit, woman, we're doing that one this weekend. And also phtbbbththth.) Also, hey, red wine! Which Monroe will apparently break out for a date (though it looks a bit more like a rose than a truly dark red) but not for casual drinking. I... guess that makes sense, sexual and/or romantic urges being presumably linked to hunting urges in Blutbad, as we saw with Angelina. There's still another clock (that kind of looks like the tenor cuckoo's baby cousin) in the corner above Monroe's head because it's not a Monroe-in-his-house scene if he's not surrounded by clocks. Behind him on the far wall is something that looks maybe like a painting/print of an angel, hard to say for sure from this distance. There is, again, a cabinet behind Monroe that in this case looks to hold wineglasses and possibly some of the china? The candles are burned down and drippy with enough wax that it seems like at least a first course has passed if not a second, though we didn't see enough dishes for that and the way they're approaching the dinner it seems like they've just got settled, so I'm calling that a minor continuity mistake and moving along. Some kind of an armchair behind Rosalee, yellowish-gold in color, and though we don't get a good look at it we can tell that these chairs are more formal, all wooden and don't appear to be on coasters. Oh, wait, there. Before the tenor cuckoo blocks it entirely. A smallish armchair, not overstuffed, and probably at least half in there for lack of anywhere better to put it. The weird wire thing I noticed back in Three Bad Wolves turns out to be a nifty lamp! Hah.

Then we have to wait for Rosalee and Monroe to stop being adorable and Renard and Mia to stop being dangerous(ly sexy), and when we come back it's to Monroe in front of his record players (which OF COURSE he has) in front of what I'm guessing is the low dark bookshelf adjacent to the green one with the tenor cuckoo which has pride of place. He's still got a good bit of wine in the glass, so he's either gone through one or more glasses already or he's nursing this one to keep his head; I'd bet on the latter. Hey, I was right about where the phonograph was! And now we're back to the living room and checking on new data. Which, given the closeups, we're not really getting just yet. I do get a decent look at the wall behind the couch when Angelina barges in, but unfortunately aside from a small low table to the right of the big tall shelves, which balances the one on the side toward the kitchen? I got nothin. Oh wait, that's a lie! There are some paperbacks, they're just stored lower. Possibly lower-priority reading, possibly because Monroe likes to give an impression of culture without actually hiding his preferences. There's a brown afghan folded over what was Monroe's side of the couch before he stood up, which I don't think is the same one that Hap had back in Three Bad Wolves but it's of a kind despite not being patterned as far as I can see.

On into the kitchen! Where my, what a lot of big knifes you have, Monroe. Santoku knife and big and little chef's knives and something the use for which I'm not sure. Contrasting with that is a glass dish still holding some kind of salady greens, the bottle of wine, a custard cup, and a stainless steel mixing bowl. Also a small towel. As the camera pans around we see that the counter on the other side behind Angelina (the one we first saw is, at a guess, in the corner between stove and sink) is also covered with dishes and leftovers from dinner. I see what's probably a salad bowl peeking out as well as a tray with bread on. THANK YOU A GOOD SHOT OF THE LIVING ROOM. From an angle we haven't seen before. Cello still obvious by its absence, the leather chair that seems to be Monroe's default and Hap sat in during the argument in TBW appears to be a recliner, there's a random... canvas? chair over by the fireplace and, as always, clocks clocks and more clocks. After the ad break we can get, mm. Chopping board, knife, roll of paper towels, yes that looks like a blender, toaster oven, bottle of wine that Angelina set down, and something wrapped in plastic I can't readily identify. But! That said, this tells us among other things that with the exception of the coffee maker and sausage grinder/maker we see earlier, Monroe has very few kitchen implements that are not multi-functional. Which is a fairly pragmatic and straightforward approach to cooking. I approve. Also the two wall-mounted clocks I'm seeing in here seem to be the kind of pendulum clock with the counterweights to wind them. Possibly matching, I am so not going that detailed. TOO MANY CLOCKS. ALL THE CLOCKS. Angelina moves for morebetter view, so let's see: kitchen scale, a few bottles of vitamins/herbal supplements, a red something or another (hot mitt?), another cutting board (not a tray, sorry) with bread or an onion split open on it? That's quite a few cutting boards out for someone who shouldn't need to worry about raw meat contamination. I have no... oh, that's a wine cooler device back there, the silver-and-black thing, isn't it. So a few one-use toys, but all for things that Monroe makes extensive use of. Some kind of container that looks like it ought to hold garlic cloves, it not being big enough for onions. Or spices of some sort. Around the corner between the toaster oven and the sink, an airtight container with fuck knows what in it, it's not flour/sugar/any of the common household items. (I keep flour, sugar, cornmeal, and rice in mine, and now you know more about my kitchen than you ever cared to.) That is still a lot of coats in the hallway.

Oh hey! Little work alcove-y thing with a desk and I bet that thing off to our left is where Monroe and Nick ate dinner. Unfortunately the giant fuckoff pillar is in my way, but as we pull out this is not that alcove. It could be, but the pillar is new and the shelves weren't that close to Nick and Monroe and seriously, I need a floorplan approximately yesterday. But the chairs are familiar and this is where Monroe will have breakfast with Juliette in another six episodes, I do believe. Which gives us now THREE eating locations, the one from Organ Grinder, the formal dining room just past, and the breakfast nook. That's just weird. Monroe, why are you so weird. I will wait to give you more detail on this, then, until after I can acquire some better lighting. Though when we get around to Monroe calling Nick Angelina's standing in front of a table with some rather familiar looking flowers and yeah, that's the dining room, so I don't quite know how the layout here works. We don't get a good look at Monroe's movement here, either. Rarrgh. Once Nick comes over Monroe moves things into his workroom, which is very telling, actually. All his serious conversations take place in either the kitchen or his place of work, and ones where he feels the need to have the upper hand are almost always in his workroom, I believe. It's a nice bit of subtle blocking. I'm deeply annoyed by not having enough knowledge about clockmaking and repair (ditto watches) to know what everything in here is for, but there are myriad shelves and drawers and storage things for parts and tools, and I think probably one of those is a filing cabinet for business-related paperwork. Also there are TWO entrances to the workroom? The hell, we never got a good sense of that before this. Excuse me, I'll be over here pounding my face into the desk until it's smithereens. Or maybe it's double-wide doors? That would make fractionally more sense, and explain the weirdass angles from earlier. Though I still wanna know how the stairs to the second floor abruptly moved from where they were in Three Bad Wolves, since Hap fell dead at their foot and we can't see them at all with Nick standing in the doorway to the living room. That's a pretty substantial redesign, I'm just saying. I also don't see how both staircase and coats fit into the hallway down to the right. Assuming they actually do and I'm not totally insane, which it feels like I'm going because I think Escher designed this place. WTF. No, I still get two entrances off the workroom. GUYS. I swear to fuck this wasn't there in season 1. You'll have to excuse me while I get some booze to cry into. Certainly if it was like this last season Monroe didn't keep all these doors open when he wasn't working.

Anyway. I give up on making sense of the layout and we'll move along to La Llorona, which I'm sure will not be frustrating AT ALL on account of massive redecoration spree. Ahem. Once I wipe the sarcasm off the keyboard, we take a good look at Monroe's new! improved! front yard. Starting with rows of skulls on sticks lining the walk, presumably as much for the Dia de los Muertos symbolism as because it's Monroe. In fact, a lot of what's in the front yard ties more to La Llorona and Latino culture than to US expressions of Halloween. I suspect that as I dig into Monroe's decorating it will be more Old World in general, as per usual for Monroe, but let's keep going! Gravestones, check, half-rotted corpse, check, skeleton popping out of a trash can on its side that's motion-sensitive, I think those skulls are making a faery circle and I have to go laugh hysterically now. (I can't decide if Grimm should do faeries - and I don't just mean the Nuckelavee - or never touch them with a ten foot pole.) And then a couple skeletons with long dark hair in long white dresses! JUST IN CASE YOU FORGOT THE EP TITLE. Or something. Trust us, we didn't. Skeletons and ghosts in all the gnarly trees. And a piece of scene-setting that mostly involved Monroe NOT doing something for awhile (though those poor props people) is hey look, a bunch of unraked dead leaves! Though given the way they're sort of artistically piled around the trash can and the hands reaching out of the ground and the faery ring of skulls I'd guess there was maybe some deliberate work put into that. Also that's a lot of fog machines. And cobwebs in the trees. Nick is greeted by a zombie dog lunging out of its doghouse. Monroe, you are a GIANT DORK and I love you. Spooky-colored lights (I guess? I didn't think purple was all that spooky but in with everything else it works) and a witch's head on top of the mailbox and he really, really has to have a freaking storage unit somewhere for all of this. Or if he has a basement it's nothing but boxes and boxes of decorations. Spiders great and small... er all over the front porch, plus strings upon strings of red-and-purple lights, plus some fake lanterns/candles type things. That's kind of cute, in that Monroe is managing to go all out for Halloween AND be relatively safe as far as keeping kids from tripping on his porch. And the piece de resistance that Nick brought the flail for, the undead knight. Who is probably a Knight Templar. And his pumpkin.

Once I stop swearing in all my languages and telling Kitty so she can swear in all her languages (I don't need to explain this, right? We remember the Knights Templar who were the founders of the various Grimm families?), Monroe finally fixes the flail in the undead knight's hand and we go inside! The stained glass, notably, is not covered by spiders and a giant pumpkin poster thing and so on and so forth all over his front door. The set of the living room actually does look more or less the same, just now with INFINITE HALLOWEEN piled over it. The props department must have had a field day with this. Again, lights and cobwebs and plastic jack-o-lanterns and skeletons everywhere. Over the shelves! Hanging from the ceiling! Framing the windows! I thought I'd have more to say about this, but if I stopped to actually try and count anything we'd be here all day, so we'll go with "completely covered but underneath the set is still the same" and move along. Everything else in this ep takes place outside of Monroe's house, and while that gives us a good sense of how much he considers this neighborhood his territory it doesn't do a whole lot in terms of explicating the house to us. I do see, when he opens the door to hand out candy, that the stairs to second floor are still directly in line with the front door, so sometime or another I need a good view of the entryway to figure out where the fuck the hallway is relative to the workroom and kitchen and so on. We may not get there in this post. You, like us, may have to wait for March! Because this thing is already monstrously long, pun intended.

Moving to the last of the cherry-picked episodes, Season of the Hexenbiest, then! Because Monroe has made a spare guest room out of his attic and we'll cover that along with checking on any notable changes to his house since first season. Our first scene at Monroe's is him and Nick talking and have I mentioned how glad I am that I watch these on mute for this series? Because otherwise I would be squirming with embarrassment squick. Most of this scene is just the boys' faces as they talk and Monroe drinks beer and is generally filled with confusion and distaste. Insert standard rant about communication skills and lack thereof. No new details, and the living room, what we see of it when Nick stands and walks out, looks to be back to normal after the kids smashed his window in La Llorona. No visible changes from season 1. A good look at the painting over the mantel which is, yes, of forest and hills/fields beyond the trees with no large wildlife depicted. I think this is one of the rare scenes where we spend so long focused on increasingly close shots of Monroe's face that we can't see any clocks around him until he stands, and it's a good way of visually establishing that while he may be at home he's out of his element right now.

Our next couple scenes are with Juliette coming over to fall apart on him. Oh honey. He's more in his element here, giving comfort to a friend when he has a clue what's wrong and isn't being asked to deal with awkward romantic entanglements. I was holding out hope that I could see what's with the stairway/hallway/workroom area this first bit, but alas, it's not to be. Instead we get a decent shot the next morning of that breakfast nook! Which really, at this point I have to assume that really is where Nick and Monroe ate dinner because I can't figure out where else it could possible be, the chairs match, the cupboards behind Monroe's chair match. Or what was Monroe's chair when it was him and Nick, but Juliette's currently curled up there. I think we must have had a very, very bizarre camera angle on this alcove to fuck with my depth perception on it that badly. Or they changed it between seasons, because there's a LOT more stuff on the shelves that we really should have seen glimpses of during Organ Grinder. If the two places are intended to be congruent, anyway. Couple clocks, a ficusy type plant that seems to be the Hollywood default for "we need a plant on set that looks good and won't look fake if it's fake or die easily if it's real." A metal rooster. Some hardcover books, a hand that looks somewhere between a Hand of Glory and a one of those jewelry holder things in terms of style, no idea what that's about. A wood box to the left of the plant. Hey, those mugs are familiar! I want Monroe's everyday dishes, you guys. I'll pass on the teapot, but it's a cute little thing. Drawers and cupboards behind Juliette for holding, one assumes, assorted dishes and china. We can just barely sort of make out a desk behind Monroe that I assume is for working on finances, be they business, personal, or both. Maybe for correspondence. There's a lamp on it that's on, and again we see how awkward Monroe is when he's not framed by his clocks. Juliette is more in his element than he is, I guess you could say, trying to seek out the answers (and running out of time, perhaps) and getting no help from anyone she could reasonably expect it from. Not much else out of this scene, I can't quite tell where the hell this nook is relative to anything other than the kitchen. I think it's sort of toward the back of the house? Also Monroe totally DOES have a bathrobe thick enough to look like a dressing gown, and I will be over here cracking up despite all the awkward now.

Our very last scene is also the very last scene of Grimm so far. Tragically, we still don't get a good enough look at the entryway to understand its layout. Nor do we get more than a glimpse of a closed door at the top of said stairs to know much about the second floor. But the attic! Which looks to be about half-finished, at a rough guess, and presumably that door to the right at the top of the stairs leads to a closet with a crawlspace. Just at a guess. No I did not grow up with an attic like that why are you giving me that look. There's a painting that looks like it's related to the Dutch masters in style though I can't identify which or what the painting is off the top of my head. This also appears to be one of the places Monroe keeps pictures of his ancestors, since there's a number of photos here and at least one is a black and white. Several clocks, as usual, which I assume means he comes up here with a certain degree of frequency in order to ensure they're running properly and/or to wind them. Rafters angled so that we know this is the attic, complete with slightly smaller windows. This actually, all of this furniture? Looks kind of like it used to be in a kid's room. Monroe, is this your childhood furniture? Because if so AWWWW. All the aww. The dresser's not too small for an adult to use, but I wouldn't want it to be a long-term stay, I think. The nightstand looks smallish. I think the bed is a double rather than a queen, a more traditional child or adolescent-sized bed. Excuse me. I have to go run the squee off.

There's an end table-sized thing right at the bottom of our screen, with a lamp and probably that's a clock and a couple other doo-dads on it that look to be carved wood. A big old trunk at the foot of the bed with a blanket thrown over top, a set of bookshelves that look close but not identical to the dark brown one in Monroe's living room - for one thing I think these have glass fronted doors, but since they're in the far corner it's hard to tell. More shelves on the adjacent wall although one of those things might be a desk. If it is, it's definitely child-sized. Apart from that, the lighting's too dim to get a great deal of detail out of it. The overwhelming impression is one of handmade things and especially wood: hand carved clocks, probably some of the furniture is handmade, probably at least that blanket Nick's sitting on is handmade if not the one on the bed. Dark and muted colors predominate, appropriate for the mood but also for Monroe's shrine to his childhood/ancestors, assuming that's what this room is. And then they go downstairs for the Big Reveal and HEY LOOK I think that's finally enough data for a shot at the layout of the front of the house. Front door opens, you've got the stairs up and to the right is the workroom. In between the two is, in fact, the hallway with the coat hooks and so on leading straight back to the kitchen, and probably the breakfast nook and study area tuck back on the right side of the house since I don't think the workroom goes all the way back. On the left we've got the living and dining room, each with their own entrances to the kitchen, and if the set designer could have made the kitchen more central to Monroe's living space I do not know HOW. Ahem. And then I stare at the living room for a bit and okay, no, nothing new appears to have been added or moved. Even since season 1! Monroe: a creature of habit. At least they're not telling us anything we didn't already know, in that.


  1. I'd attribute any puzzling shifts of walls or doorways to the fact that set walls have to be easily movable to make room for the camera rig, boom op etc. See also, why we don't often see ceilings or overhead light fixtures unless it's a location set.

    1. See, I know this and you know this and clearly the set designers did not count on this kind of obsession. And it is DEEPLY aggravating while trying to write this series. At least there's just the one more. *wry grin*