Saturday, October 25, 2014

Paul Is Dead Haven S5E07 Nowhere Man

Previously, on Haven! They brought Audrey back! And according to Millikin this was always the way they intended to do it, which makes us feel so much better about things (no, seriously, no sarcasm) and gives us a fair bit of glee. Audrey is of course naked on arrival, but Nathan is not letting on whether or not he can feel her touch, so.

Our first shot is the Cape Rouge! Alas, Cape Rouge, we will miss you. For those of you who didn't catch it the first couple times we mourned (I think this is the first episode set in large part on the Cape Rouge this season?), the boat that serves as the look and shell and establishing shot of the Cape Rouge actually sank recently, and I believe it's non-recoverable. Thankfully as far as production is concerned, they've already got a lot of establishing shots and everything else is shot on a soundstage, so Haven is still good to go. The poor people who owned that boat, though. At any rate, we start off in the Cape Rouge, with Duke pouring through the Crocker journal to find anything about body splitting or cloning or split personalities or anything like that. Duke can't find a damn thing, and the best he can come up with is weird mutant Trouble. The best Nathan can come up with is that maybe it was one he doesn't know about, since the Crocker family (of serial killers, thanks Nathan) (no, really, thanks, the snark gets Audrey to smile at the familiarity of it) probably didn't keep perfect records. Actually, Nathan, serial killers can be very meticulous to the point of mental disorder, so maybe they did keep perfect records! No, no they didn't, the Crocker curse is more like a drug addiction than the kind of compulsion that drives serial killers and I'm getting off topic. The end result is they have no idea what happened. But they're glad it did. Audrey is off in the corner, somewhat less damsely and more understandably shook up and fragile over what happened. She does focus more on the fact that it's just her in her body, Audrey Parker, and not Sarah or Lucy or Veronica or any of the others we've heard about so far, and that's a good thing to be focusing on. But then they also have the demon in their basement, and Audrey is in favor of giving her over to the Guard. Which I actually find unusual or unlike her, but not in an out of character way? It's a very much in character reaction to what Mara has put her and everyone else through, and I like that they went there. Duke, of course, is also in favor of this. We're in favor of it too, guys! Motion carries? Wait, no, we don't actually get a vote, dammit. Nathan doesn't want this to go down until Dwight gets back into town, because Dwight left town? And suddenly I see why they fridged his sister, maybe, although it's still irritating me that there's a sister in the fridge. Who wants to bet this is Adam Copeland's paternity leave coming up, yes? Yes.

Unfortunately Nathan has a good reason for not wanting to turn her over to the Guard until Dwight's there to yank on their leashes: what if Mara and Audrey are connected. It's plausible! Magical theory in general over much fiction says it's plausible, and Magical Theory as applied to Haven agrees on account of Maraudrey and William were somehow connected, as so amply demonstrated by the gunshot. Which now brings the question of, are Audrey and William still connected or is that only a Mara and William privilege? We still don't have an answer as to whether or not Audrey's immune to the Troubles anymore, and the two are likely linked. She said, getting tired of typing out connected every couple of sentences. Too many questions, is the upshot, and insufficient data. We sympathize wholeheartedly. But this also means they need to keep Mara safe until they find out what putting her in danger will do, which they're all reluctant to do both given what she's done to them and given how dangerous it is to be in close proximity to her. Audrey describes her as making her skin crawl, which is probably not just Mara and the potential for being connected to her but also the history of being inside her head, of having Mara inside her head, now that she's a fully formed person and not a collection of impulses and memories like last time. As a result of all that she declares she's done with Mara, she's just going to be Audrey Parker, and everyone goes oh honey. Because while the latter is understandable and probably even feasible (probably. we do note the irony of her saying this right after all the body switching) the former is not likely to happen anytime soon. Duke resolves that they're going to keep Mara until Dwight gets back, Audrey resolves that she is going to go home and take a shower and collapse. The "and collapse" is taken as read, along with the steel wool she's going to use to scrub off in the shower. We would. Poor Audrey. Nathan's not going to follow her yet, he's going to double check in with Duke and rehash everything they just discussed just to make sure they're clear, I guess? No, they've already adequately expressed their thoughts, and this reaffirms that they feel sorry for and want to protect Audrey, and they don't actually think Mara is going to help them. And then Nathan follows Audrey out.

Duke will head down to the hold? Cargo room? I think it's also the same place he and Julia were held back in season one, come to think of it. Mara is sitting chained to a chair, loosely chained but still, and clanking. Also, interestingly, dressed in the kind of jeans and tank top that almost make her look like some sort of ... well, a Sarah Connor figure. Not in the sense of being a protagonist but more in the sense of being a restrained badass. With additional alienation? She wants to talk to her new twin sis, she says. Yeah, that's not going to happen, but it's a nice thought and speaks somewhat towards this being an unprecedented event for her, too. She'd like to get her hands on Audrey and see what this means for her. That's not going to happen. Duke explains in his usual inimitable fashion that no, she does not have rights, she does not get to make demands, she does not get to anything. The only reason she's alive is because of her connection to Audrey, which brings up really scathing depths of sarcasm from Mara. About how she can sense her, and mocking the very idea after stringing him along for a bit. While she's doing that I'm looking at the lighting, which is interesting that Duke's in the spotlight and Mara's in the shadow when usually it's the other way around to keep the person tied to the chair blinded. Though this does have the similar effect of making it difficult to see him, and it puts Duke as symbolically the only light in the darkness, or what have you. It also puts Mara in the shadows and makes her more sinister. Especially when she starts dictating terms to him, and this is more assertive and aggressive and also more cleverness than we've seen out of Mara in ... pretty much since she showed up. Holding information hostage. I say cleverness but maybe what I mean is sharpness, she's sharper. Possibly because she's in a more precarious position now that they really don't have any reason to keep her alive except for wondering whether or not killing her would also kill Audrey. She also wants the Crocker family journal. I would put forward that it's not only that she's not immune to Duke's Troubles anymore, but also that she's curious how the Troubles have changed and manifested in descendants more recently. She's already expressed an interest in/fascination with Dwight and Vicki's Troubles, after all. At any rate, Duke bringing up her curious lack of immunity, which leads us to ask, is Mara not immune to the Crocker Trouble because Audrey made it, and it's the one Trouble Audrey made? (and does that mean she's not immune to the ones William made or is that referring to how they made them together?) Further than that, is she immune to the Troubles because she deliberately made them that way, and Audrey didn't know how to? Further than that, is it possible others of her race or species or what have you to create Troubles and Troubled people, or at least powered people, to whom they aren't immune? And then send them after Mara and William? Or... something. I'm not really sure where I'm going with this chain of speculation, but look, it's a nice chain, all the links are polished and shiny! The key point here is that the only difference that we know of between the original Crocker Trouble and the new improved Crocker Trouble, as far as how it was given, is that Audrey did the latter without a clue what she was doing and Mara did the former. The other salient differences: the original Crocker Trouble involved absorption, the Crocker Mark II involves expression and absorption. It's hard to say whether or not each Crocker contained only the Troubles he (she?) absorbed or whether they had all the ones prior down the bloodline, and whether Duke would have had Wade's regardless or if he absorbed them when he killed Wade, on account of absorption, not expression. They're playing our song, and the chorus is insufficient data! insufficient data!

Duke's chosen means to get sufficient data is torture. Oh Duke. Not only does that get you inaccurate data, which is in some ways worse than insufficient, you're actually not that good at it. He grabs a pliers, makes threatening gestures at her toes, but whether or not Mara's right and he doesn't have it in him, she is right that he doesn't have it in him right now. And right now is the important time. He does have kind of a psychotic grin on, which just brings up a similarly aggressive tone from her, also a lampshade for the foot fetish referring to Nathan tickling Maraudrey's feet. Nah, it'll be fine, they'll find out if she and Audrey are connected if Audrey loses a toe, and it's just a toe, right? Well, is that what he's going to tell Audrey? Duke might not be in love with her anymore, but Mara is right in that he does love her and wouldn't want to do that to her for no better reason than to find out if the two women are connected. And there are much easier, less permanent ways to experiment with that. This whole scene does, by the way, also serve as retroactive indication of how much effort Mara was probably putting forward to keep Audrey from coming out, which is also somewhat reassuring on the flatness of the villainous behavior. Maybe? We hope this remains a trend, anyway. Having called his bluff, she points out that they are in way over their heads as he walks out with nothing, closing the very heavy door behind him. Dun dun dunnnn! Roll credits!

Well. Whatever her status with immunity to Troubles is, Nathan certainly has no, um, trouble responding to Audrey. As it were. According to writer statements they opted to open after the initial burst of OMG you're alive, which we agree with as a choice, it's calmer, and it's more of a return to and a reminder of what Audrey and Nathan are to each other outside of Nathan's borderline hazardous obsession. It's sweet. We haven't seen much of that lately. As per usual both for a cop on a show and for this show, this isn't going to last and is interrupted by Nathan's phone. Audrey calls the face he makes "case face" which is painfully adorable, there's some discussion of the case and Nathan attempts to procrastinate by saying they can handle it let's stay here. Audrey brought lampshades for this, and for their entire role on the show, really, yes, they are that couple. They solve cases and help people with Troubles, that's what they do, and she would really like to get back to doing what it is she does and feeling normal again, thank you very much. Nathan is more concerned that people will think she's Mara and react accordingly. Heh. Yep. And Nathan's other concern, which it takes him a while to cough up, is that she's not immune to the Troubles. Because he can't feel her touch anymore. This, well, yes, after everything they've done and been implied to have done, comes as something of a shock to Audrey. Not at all a shock to us, we're sitting back here snickering and a bit relieved that at least that aspect of their relationship is undimmed by her lack of immunity. I can even get behind his reasoning of wanting to be sure that it was what he thought it was; trauma and shock do weird things and the Troubles are pretty much always fucking weird. Now he's got, shall we say, ample proof that her lack of immunity isn't wearing off, and he's provided her with proof that it doesn't matter to him at the same time. And none of this is diminishing her desire to go out and do normal things, be herself, be almost aggressively herself at this point, in fact it's probably just making it worse. She's clearly disturbed and upset by the fact that Nathan can't feel her touch anymore, in fact she might be more upset by it than Nathan is, which is something of a switch from the expected. A good switch, though. It provides her with vulnerability without the damselification of earlier, an emotional wound that's solvable and workable, a minor obstacle for their relationship to surmount. Nothing too dramatic, but nothing too smooth, either. It's a harder balance to strike than you might think.

Going out there and being them involves, as it turns out, Audrey pulling on slightly more professional than usual clothes. She'd been getting softer and more casual, henleys and jeans and almost never a blazer, but either because Mara went through her wardrobe and threw shit out or because Audrey wants more of the authority conveyed by I Am From The Government And I Am Here To Help, she's gone for blazer and… heels of some kind, by that sound. Though jeans, for more of the just-folks feel. Rafferty is on scene with the wife of one of the vics, who promptly lashes out at Audrey for being Mara. Yeaaaah, see, this is the problem with having had your body taken over by a psychopath who ran around shooting people. Rafferty's explanation that it's not really Mara anymore would hold more water if she sounded like she believed it rather than was the world's most annoyed Catholic reciting catechism. And indeed, she's not happy about it, she's just following Nathan's orders. Aheh. This Trouble involves… shadows on walls? Seen from outside it's described as a flash of light and then, as Nathan points out quite rightly, the afterimage of a body you get with a nuclear explosion. Guys, why do you not have a Geiger counter on site. Guys? They've got two more vics, all tied to the farmer's market, let's go investigate! Right? No-o, no, Nathan wants Audrey to sit this one out because he doesn't want to handle a mob scene. Nathan, you have forgotten the basic tenet of your relationship with Audrey, which is that you started out as partner who respect each other, each other's opinions, and work a case best when you're working it together. Bad Nathan. No cookie. Audrey's both traumatized enough and twitchy in the immediate sense over having been called a monster to her face that she gives in with little protest and moderately bad grace. Yeah, I don't think this is a good idea. That's the look of fine, fuck you, I'm going to go work the case without you and prove to everyone I can still do this.

That strings trio sounds like it belongs in Asheville. Who wants to bet they grabbed some local-ish eastern Canadian musicians for this? Because it also really sounds like that. Sadly, I don't know enough about Maine's local fiddle tradition to say if this is accurate for the region. I would say close-ish, but that's not a detail we're technically here for. Excuse me while I stop trying to figure out what the tune is, look, the fiddler's pretty good, shut up. Or at least the one on the recording, because believe you me they didn't record that outside. Particularly not with that amount of faking it from the fiddler onstage. Everything looks perfectly normal and ordinary! Oh, except that guy over there, thank you ominous musical cue and lurking and brooding! That Guy turns out to be named Reggie, he's a Guard member, I would just like it noted that I am really tired of the classism with the Guard. Ever since they got more fleshed out, all the men are hicks and/or playing at just-folks, unless they happen to be recurring characters with actual plot and stuff. And all of the hick-types are the ones who want to shoot first and ask questions later. Guys. Nuance. I am SURE you have heard of it. Although it is at least true that with the power swap between Vince and Dwight, the Guard rank and file will necessarily be testing how far they can go with Dwight out of town. If Dwight gets to have power, who else can? Etc. And with Nathan's obsessive fixation on Maraudrey, of course they're going to be inclined to inform him that he fails in his job both as a cop and as a person who put that tattoo on his body. (Let's not forget that he did that so he could use Jordan, back when. Nathan doesn't really believe in what the Guard tattoo stands for, to any insider's way of thinking about it.) Reggie is going to be a creepy fucker and claim he was standing around watching over all the people at the farmer's market. Um. Yeah. That's a significant fail on social skills, dude. Yes, he heard about the incineration Trouble, Nathan points out the connection to the market, and gets his complete and utter lack of help with the Troubles shoved in his face. Well about fucking time someone said it. And it's not totally true, but it's enough of the truth that it stings, as it damn well should. Yes, Nathan, outside of your tiny circle of people who know all the details (over your objections and obfuscations let's not forget), the information people can see to know about you is… not really positive. At all. Even a little. He will now issue a direct threat to take Nathan down and make Mara pay for what she did, except it's of course going to be Audrey. And no, he's not going to offer up what his Trouble is for the having, are you kidding, Nathan.

Nathan goes back to the precinct to do the scutwork of looking for any other victims, considering that shadows aren't all that obvious a mark of Something Is Troubled In Haven, and missing persons is a common enough problem in this town. So! Digging into the reports, I'd love to know why they didn't give this bit to Audrey in the first place - at the precinct would be a good place for her to feel useful while not putting her in any significant danger, yes? No. But it means that we get Nathan being ghostified while on the phone telling her that there are, in fact, several other incidents that look related or similar. We don't get a "going back until" point, either, but that's a good half dozen file folders he has open. Ulp. And from the outside, yes, that is a bright flash and a shadow left on the floor, and an increasingly freaked out Audrey on the line. After the ad break, she declares her intent to come down there right now, while Nathan discovers he can no longer affect the physical world and, in fact, as per standard in ghost stories, the only reason I can guess for him not falling through the floor is residual body memory. Yes, Nathan, you are fucked. He's going to give it a try anyway, because that's what you do when you get freaked out about being displaced from your body even more than, you know, usual. (Look it was right there I had to.) She has more files for him, it looks like one of them might be on a beach? Innnnteresting. Rafferty drops the files down, then turns to see Nathan's shadow on the floor. ...actually now I wonder if this is as much a shadow-removal Trouble as anything. Something something Peter Pan. This is bad, Nathan, it's okay, you can say that much on cable TV.

Rafferty calls in both Duke and Audrey, because whatever her feelings about Mara she still knows who the appropriate people to call are, the more or less next of kin in the event of supposed death. And I think Audrey's face starts to convince her that it really is Audrey back again, because Mara couldn't have faked that kind of shellshocked oh hell no expression. She's not going to believe Nathan's dead until she sees a body either! Just in case we thought the obsessive fixation only went one way. It doesn't, which is admittedly the point of their relationship, I just… still don't really see how it is that people can view their relationship as healthy or any kind of ideal to aspire to. Audrey's the slightly healthier one in that she's also focused on, this is what she does. She fixes Troubles. She helps other people. The fact that Nathan's now been taken by this Trouble is driving her to greater heights of obsession, but she'd still have hit this point sooner or later with some Trouble in an attempt to prove that not being immune doesn't make her worthless. Oh honey. Duke's expression says more or less that as well, along with the resigned I am just as fucked up as you two, I just have better coping mechanisms look. I don't know if I'd agree with that, Duke, but I will admit that he's got a wider variety of them. And he'll go look, as he snarks, in the Crocker book of death. Not that it's likely he'll find anything in there, if the Crockers had ended the Trouble it wouldn't be showing up again, but maybe he can find reference to something a Crocker wanted to end and failed to? If nothing else he can go rattle Mara's chains some more, he's just not going to say that in front of Audrey. Who will dive into the piles of missing persons reports after asking Duke to get the Guard off her back, they're staking out the cop shop. That seems like a really bad idea, the stakeout and the request both. Not every member of the Haven PD is going to be a member of the Guard, and they might be pretty sick of these guys encroaching on their territory. Jurisdiction friction, after a fashion, even with the Chief also being the leader of the Guard. (Maybe, for some, especially.) No, Nathan, you established she's not immune, that's more of a losing-hope "Audrey" than anything that indicates he expects her to hear him. If he were thinking clearer he'd go straight to working on Mara, but he's not and he doesn't. I will say that it's convenient that he gets to drop eaves all over the place without people being aware!

One panover later, we're back with the Guard, this time with Duke approaching and, oh god, mocking the whole hick thing. At least there's a degree of trend awareness here, but I'm still getting very tired of the northern redneck paramilitary movement thing. This time he's mocking Mitch, as he requests them to back off of Audrey. Because that always inclines people to do what you want them to, Duke. Mitch, in mild contrast to Reggie, appreciates what Crocker and Wuornos are trying to do at least enough to offer bland sympathies, most likely because he's actually seen them in action and helping the Troubled even despite Nathan's shooting the barnvatar. But that doesn't mean he's willing to let go of the fact that Crockers kill the Troubled, or that he's willing to stop watching Audrey, who he thinks is Mara. More than that, he blames her for this killing people Trouble, which isn't unreasonable if this is one of the more obscure ones no one's seen in a while. We the audience know it's not Duke, and we can be pretty sure William hasn't made any new ones, but who and what it is and what triggered it? The hell if we know. The closest Trouble we've seen to this is maybe the handful of reality altering ones we've seen (The Trouble With Troubles 4x10, Sarah 3x09 at a stretch), any sort of transdimensional Trouble we haven't seen, or maybe the Dark Man one which had to do with light and shadow (Ain't No Sunshine 1x08). We have seen a man whose Trouble cast him into a state where he was believed dead by everyone else (Resurfacing 1x12) but that Trouble only affected the carrier, not the people around him. So, yeah. This isn't anything we've encountered before. This isn't, apparently, anything Mitch or the Guard he knows has encountered before! Because it's fun to deal with a Trouble with entirely unknown parameters. You know, my main question in this scene is why Duke isn't offering up the death truffles as explanation, not that that's like tangible evidence, but it's at least a reason why Mara can't be going around Troubling people other than "oh, by the way, she's locked up in my hold." No, Duke's got nothing, and Mitch is giving him nothing. He's faking giving him the deal! Badly. But whether or not Duke believes it is immaterial for the purposes of this scene, because we do have an immaterial Nathan around to overhear Mitch saying that they're still going to watch her, they're going to let her do her thing, and they're going to grab her the second she gives them anything like proof that she's Mara. Which is, in this case, make one mistake. Getting really tired of the guys being single-minded obsessive violent thugs, people. Nathan is getting really tired of people going after Audrey.

And then, as he's stalking off to try and help her, rescue her, whatever he thinks he's going to do, we get a nice sequence of whooshing passing-right-through-people sounds followed by a meaty thud. Oh, hey, this guy he can run into! This guy who seems not at all fazed by the fact that a ghost just ran into him. Because he's a ghost too, of course. Or at least he thinks he is. No clue where he thinks he's gotta go if he's a ghost, but he's definitely taking a sort of authoritative, patronizing tone when he tells Nathan he's dead. On the ad break, of course. Nathan keeps following him after we come back, asking him about any kind of atomic flashes (none, it was a car crash) and why are they still here if they're dead. Other guy seems to think it's because they're in Purgatory, and points out that not everyone's dealing with this all that well. Yeah, no arguments there, if I were flashy-thingied into another plane of this world I'd be jittery too. Nathan's next approach is to try and find out if there's a way to talk to the living, as it were, but the guy's got no idea. If there's help, he says, it's at the cemetery. That's... depressing. Apropos, and kind of hilarious given the cemetery is where they had quite a lot of talking to ghosts when talking to ghosts was an actual thing (Sins of the Father 2x12) but not all that helpful. Ah well.

Audrey's trying to pin down who was at the farmer's market and thus who can be cross-referenced to the files of old missing persons. Which isn't a bad place to start! Although I pity the poor raffle staffer. Having requested that list, Audrey sees something that's kind of like better: a woman's been taking pictures of the event. She goes over to request those pictures, and either this woman hasn't caught up on recent events or she really is just there to be a tourist, or something, because she doesn't have the same reaction to Audrey as those who are more familiar with Mara. (Logistically, this is because Audrey's on her own and it'd be harder and take up precious minutes for her to talk this woman down on her own. But still.) She does find a picture of Nathan talking to Reggie, but the woman with the photos doesn't know who that is. Apparently Reggie was, as he said, there all morning watching over the farmer's market. Or just watching them, lady photographer doesn't think much of him or his vaunted efforts to "protect" people. That's okay, lady photographer, we think he's creepy too. Audrey asks her to email all the photos to her, hands her a business card, with some implying that she's going to have a talk with Reggie he's not going to like. And not just because she looks like Mara.

Over at the graveyard Nathan is making great progress in finding people he can talk to. Unfortunately they all think they're dead. The first is an older woman sobbing at the graveside of a Ruth Creed? By the way the man who steers her away talks she's a recent arrival, which brings up the question of how recent are all these alleged dead people. Dead people shouldn't age, after all, are they aging? Why has no one noticed this? Or are they not aging? The welcome wagon's name is Morgan, and according to him they don't eat, sleep or age, so that does answer that question even if it raises several more (like, if this is a Trouble, where did the bodies go, or did they get vaporized?) and they don't talk to the living. Oh, apparently he's been a ghost longer than anyone else, which means two years or a little less. That's not quite long enough to decide you haven't aged, dude, but okay. He then takes Nathan to his own grave as proof, says that he had cancer, he went out for a last swim and that's when it happened. Whether "it" is his death or the Trouble incident is uncertain as yet, let's keep in mind that it's also possible that some of them are ghosts and some of them are victims of a Trouble. Nathan brings up the very good question of, if he died at a beach, where's his bathing suit. And the perfectly valid answer is that they manifest, however that happens, in the last image they solidly remember being as, something with intellectual and emotional pull. In Morgan's case, his last birthday party, and in Nathan's case, well, he was in the office pursuing a case and on the phone with Audrey. And actually, while we're discussing that and I'm thinking of it, is it just me or are they using a soft gray filter over the "ghost world" scenes? I don't think it's just me. It's most clear when we get the transition from Nathan alive in the office to Nathan status unknown in the office, though. Anyway. Nathan is still focused on helping Audrey, and Morgan dolefully says that there's no way, he knows, he tried. He mentions a fiancee he tried to get back to, then speculates that they need to finally let them go.

(K: I'm gonna let you finish, but I think I just figured out who the Troubled person is. So, there's a fiancee, right? And then there was the photographer lady who took the picture of Nathan and Reggie at the Farmer's Market, and then there's also a fiancee here? I bet it's her, and I bet something to do with Morgan is what triggered her Trouble. The light is a flash bulb, more of an industrial strength flash bulb than she has on the camera. Yeah, I don't have anything else to pin that on here, but I'm really curious to see if I'm right now. Okay, back to your regularly scheduled recaplysis.) (A: No wait that's perfect, because it goes straight to the splitting bodies from their souls or whatever the fuck is going on here, that's an incredibly common superstition with photography.) (K: BRB finding a writer to chew on.)

Ahem. So, anyway, letting people go and letting issues and unresolved problems go reminds Nathan of his father, which brings us also back to Sins of the Father 2x12, and the gravedigger Trouble. The only problem with that is that there has to be a body, or at least something buried in a grave to trigger the ghost of that person, and there are no bodies happening here. But Duke did kill the Hopkins kid, or rather the Hopkins kid impaled himself on a knife Duke was holding, so now Duke has that Trouble and yes, that might be a way for Nathan to talk to him, again, if there were a body to bury. There isn't. It's not happening, Nathan, even allowing for the existence of the Troubles. He's going to pursue it anyway. Morgan has no idea what the hell he's talking about, or at least professes not to, and still thinks Nathan wants to say goodbye. Oh Morgan you silly deluded man, try being around Nathan for a few hours. He will refuse to say goodbye to Audrey when she's ninety and on her deathbed.

Back over at the Cape Rouge, Duke is flipping through the Crocker journal for anything that could help in the slightest and Nathan is hovering like the usual creepy stalker ghost, and now that I think about it can I just say how hilarious and different it is to have the tome of all knowledge trope tossed on its head? Usually when there's an ancient book or even a hundred plus years old book that's been written in it and passed down in generations, it has everything. The Winchester Family Biblenotebook, the Burkhardt Trailer and its journals, the Halliwell Book of Shadows, the Beauchamp Book of Shadows which might actually be the same thing, or Giles's library. Here? It's the Crocker Family Notebook and more often than not, it gives them nothing. I love it. It tells only what it is meant to tell and at no point do they toss a Trouble in there because it is convenient to the plot. And, you know, clearly if the Crockers had encountered this Trouble before it would probably not be happening anymore, so, no, Duke's got nothing. Nathan is now going to attempt to talk at him in an effort to I don't even know. I think at this point in the same way that we lean sideways with our game controllers or talk to whatever animals or inanimate objects we're racing, it gives us the illusion at least that we're doing something useful even when there's nothing to be done. Duke is also talking to himself, though in his case he at least knows he's talking to himself and he's just doing it out of frustration, visibly demonstrated by him throwing the book across the room and reaching for the bottle. Oh Duke. He does bring up the very good point that everyone around him dies, even if right now it feels like it's just going to be him and the scotch in the end. Let's have a tally of the people around him who've died in no particular order: the skeevy Trouble-Stealing friend from Fear and Loathing 2x02, Evi, Jennifer, Vanessa the babysitter from The Hand You're Dealt 1x10, the grandfather he tried to save, the father he didn't really try to save because he was, what, ten? Very young. Are we counting Claire Callahan in this? We probably could. His friend Jeff McShaw from 1x04 Consumed (K: Thank you so much, Millikin, for bringing that one up last night while I was eating dinner). And that's just the ones off the top of our heads. It's a long list. It's worth a bottle of scotch. He can have a second bottle of scotch for the number of times Nathan and Audrey have scared him shitless that they're about to die, or have died, for that matter, Nathan and his two bullets to the chest from Magic Hour (3x07). But the crazy lady down in the hold is a great idea, Duke! Go forth and bug her for answers, and Nathan will follow.

It's ambiguous at first, on purpose of course, whether or not Mara can see Nathan. Mostly because Nathan's standing right in front of or passing in front of Duke as they all snark at each other. Duke also engages in a transparent attempt to get her to talk about the Trouble that's been sort of not really killing people, which Mara has lampshades and stone walls for. She shuts him down and possibly chases him out by bringing up the fact that he's living on borrowed time till his Trouble kicks in again and he has to deal with one of his many bottled up, borrowed Troubles, and snarks at him some more as he leaves. And now it's just her and Nathan's ghost! Who she doesn't acknowledge till he turns to leave and calls her a name you're not really supposed to say on CableTV. It's not so much as she's insulted as that she's taunting him with the fact that she's the only one who can interact with him and the material plane or whatever. Oops. Yes, Nathan. Mara is still immune to the Troubles, that means she can see you. That is a truly terrifying psychotic smile Emily Rose has on, and they're doing that funky lighting thing with her eyes again augh. After the break we get Nathan quickly coming to the conclusion that her seeing him means he's not actually dead, just affected by a Trouble. He still can't touch her, though, which is a little odd that that's the extent of her immunity. Sort of the reverse of Audrey with James Garrick (Resurfacing 1x12), where she could touch him but not see or hear him. And he still wants her to help him, despite the fact that she has absolutely no incentive to do so! Go Nathan. Hope springs eternal. Well, there is the fact that her talking to him gets Duke's attention, though she plays it off as talking to herself and he dismisses it as her either losing it or being obnoxious, or both. Both is good. I'm wondering if the lights is meant to be a clue, though since he doesn't actually turn off the one faint light down there, we don't get to know for sure.

At any rate, Duke is catching Audrey up on the nothing he got from Mara, not that Audrey wants her help. She's off tracking the Guardsman Nathan was talking to, who she considers their main suspect. Or at least certainly their only suspect they can tie to the Farmer's Market who's been acting suspicious or aggressive yet, that's an awfully thin thread there. I mean, I understand why she's grasping at thin threads, but that's even thinner than usual. Duke realizes that she's been using herself as bait and looks like he wants to headdesk. It's okay, Duke, I'll headdesk for all of us. No, Audrey, you're not immune anymore, and I wonder how many times they're going to have this conversation. At least once more by the way she hangs up  her phone and goes walking off. All three Guardsfolk try to follow her between the houses, but she's disappeared by the time they get there. Nice tail job, guys. Real bang-up work you're doing. So, okay, they'll split up to find her, which is of course exactly what she wants, and therefore she's going to pop out behind Reggie, gun drawn, and take him to his knees. See, this is the Audrey we know and love, or mostly, she's still acting on sketchy information.

Back over at the cemetery, speaking of sketchy information, Nathan delivers the good news: They're not dead! That's only good news I guess if you weren't dying in the first place like cancer boy or potentially car accident boy, but okay. (K: See, that just adds to my theory, he tells her he's got cancer, she freaks out, her Trouble activates, freezing him at the moment in time albeit in a different dimension but at the moment in time when everything was good, right before he told her.) Nathan attempts to go on some about the Troubles but both of them are giving him the you're a crazy person look, so either they've never heard of the Troubles or they're still pretending they don't exist. Nathan points out that the headlights car accident guy saw could be the flash of bright light, and Morgan doesn't even say anything about his bright light, he's the most upset by the prospect that he's not actually dead, presumably because fuck cancer, anyway. (I love blogging like this. It enables me to find out that there's a Fuck Cancer charity and share that with you guys.)  He also points out that no one ever found a body for any of them, which might be true in both their cases. Certainly it pushes Morgan's buttons enough to start yelling at him about not hoping to go back. Well, no, if you're dying of cancer and this is the only life you've got and it might be indefinite, I'm not sure I'd want to go back either. It sounds awfully boring, though. And Nathan... it's hard to say whether he's displaying his customary lack of empathy in favor of Getting Audrey Back (oh dear lord again) or whether his empathy lies in the scenario that these people, if they knew they weren't dead, would be trying to get back to their loved ones. He convinces car crash guy at least! Cancer patient Morgan, not so much. And even, and it's a valid argument, if they do find out something, how are they going to communicate it to the living? Or, not that Morgan knows is, how are they going to communicate it to anyone not Mara. Well, that is a Nathan problem, right now everyone has tasks they've been delegated, and he looks pretty hopeful that he can get this Trouble ended. A little too hopeful, I feel. But only because I know it's too early in the episode.

Audrey, I have to say the guy's got a point: holding a gun on him is not the way to convince him you're on his side. That said, going around like you're going to sneak up on her and wallop her on the head, guys, is also not the best way to make her stop being jittery and unnerved. Particularly if you accept as truth that she was waging any kind of a battle against Mara from inside that body. (Did Nathan pass that one around? He should've. He probably didn't because he didn't want to make her look weak, but should've.) In conclusion nobody here is contributing to the notion that there's going to be a detente between Audrey and the Guard anytime soon, and Reggie brought the very specific lampshade of I know who I am, do you know who you are? Which she doesn't right now. She knows who she wants to be, but her world's been shattered again, and in light of no immunity she's falling back on ingrained cop habits. And, for bonus points, Haven with its classic awful timing will proceed to flashcinerate the poor guy to demonstrate for once and all that he's not the Troubled person doing this one. Just in time for Mitch to come up, blame her for it, and the one Guardchick (are we ever going to get a name, or is she just the token woman in the Guard to replace Jordan at this point?) to baseball bat her in the head. I really have to assume she pulled that blow, or we're excusing it because Hollywood, because swinging a full baseball swing at someone's head is enough force to well and thoroughly pulp it. Nathan cannot, in fact, fling himself into any car, he just gets to see them take her and run after. I wonder how much physical limitations are gone, with this Trouble, so that he can run at 30 mph? Or something equally ridiculous? Otherwise that's a lot of really annoying searching or, if he's lucky, knowing where a van marked Merrill Shipping & Freight might be headed. He is a cop and they've had more than their fair share of murder warehouses; I'll handwave it. I'm just noting.

Because in the next scene he's already at the warehouse where some big and scary dude is stalking down the hall with his hands in mitts! Welder's gloves, actually, once we get a good look, and since he doesn't take them off to punch in the access code it's a safe bet that his Trouble involves not being able to touch people somehow or another. Mara? William? Which of you had the touch starvation sadism fetish, because really this is a lot now. Mitch announces to Duke on Audrey's phone that the deal's off and she killed Reggie, we will all continue to facepalm, and Audrey's back to going through smartphones like cordwood. Look, I realize that people get stupid when they're scared, but isn't there anyone in the senior ranks of the Guard going "uh, guys? guys? this isn't how Troubles work? guys?" Even if you take the stance, and it's a reasonable stance, that Mara is the ultimate cause of all their woes and therefore the one to blame for anyone's death or disappearance, there's still someone out there in emotional pain who needs help. Not revenge. Isn't that, like, your guys' raison d'etre? No? Fuckssake. We will now have some ranting about how awful it is to be Troubled, which frankly I don't think Audrey has problems identifying with, though now it's starting to set in on a different level where she's not immune. Bishop is what they name he of the welding gloves, he has dissolving touch and touched his wife's hands before he knew. Oh honey. Mitch's plan, which is about as monofocused as Nathan's, is to force Audrey to alter their Troubles into something easier to live with. One: ahahahaha she can't. Two: if you got hold of Mara and made this pitch, ahahahahahahahahahahahahaha yeeaaaah that's not going to work so well for you. Although, fine, Audrey can wrestle with her ropes, Nathan will go chew on Mara's head some more. He was going to do that anyway!

And we're back at the Cape Rouge! Nathan's really popping around for a guy who has no access to cars, I'm going to handwave this one by assuming he's discovered some ghostly way of teleporting because other than that, I got nothing. Except a healthy appreciation for their budget the way Lucas Bryant is walking through things, those effects aren't that cheap. He tries to convince her that he needs to talk to Duke and this is important enough for her to go with it. She's not interested. Still. He does make the valid point that (at least as far as he knows) she doesn't know what will happen if the Guard hurts or kills Audrey, so she has a vested self-interest in talking to Duke and at least telling him the Guard have her. Unfortunately she demonstrates complete and utter willingness to risk dying at the hands of Audrey's killers because reasons. And it's not as though she has any particularly great life here, either, nor any great chance of getting through a thinny and back home, or more aether, or whatever it is she wants right now, she's kind of chained to a chair. In the midst of her dismissive speech Duke walks in, having just heard via Mitch that the Guard has Audrey somewhere. And he's here... why? Apart from being on the edge of a breakdown at the prospect of losing both his best friends on the same day, and a few days from losing Jennifer. Ah-hah! He's planning on trading her for Audrey. Well, that would shut some of the Guard up anyway. Mara doesn't think he'll do it in case they really are connected but in this case the odds are with Duke; they'll definitely kill Audrey if he does nothing, and if he turns up with Mara there's a chance that hurting her won't also hurt Audrey. Hell, if he turns up with Mara there's a pretty good chance that the Guard will be too busy standing around going what the fuck to react if he decides to book it with both women. Or that would be my plan anyway. Mara then pulls the Duke needs her to control or help him control his powers thing. That would work except he doesn't actually care about that, and he's reasonably certain (after bringing Audrey back without her help) that he doesn't need her. And in this it betrays, a little bit, her lack of empathy and how that translates into a giant honking blind spot. She can't anticipate Duke acting entirely against his self interests, and it's what's biting her in the ass at the moment. Nathan takes this opportunity to gloat, which pushes her into saying something and, there we go! Nathan's smirk says he did that on purpose. Mara's half blank half grumpy face says she did not mean to do that and nobody heard a thing. Pull the other one, lady, it plays No One Ships Nuke Like Balfour Ships Nuke. Duke doesn't entirely believe her either which way, so Nathan prompts her (and, lacking any plausible way to save face and get any leverage otherwise, she goes with it) to call back to Duke's comments about the scotch. Which nobody else heard except the invisiNathan! Mara also relays that Duke threw his journal across the room, yeah, that's pretty good proof. Along with mocking him that now he's the one going crazy. That doesn't help Duke's zen thing, that just encourages him to threaten to turn her over to the Guard if she doesn't help them get Audrey back. And it definitely is a them, now that Duke knows that Nathan's there and at least Mara can see him. Mara looks like she's both reluctantly agreeing and trying to figure out how she can play this to her advantage. Awww. She's so predictable.

Mitch is winding up to his grand finale at the warehouse: he knows that she has to do some kind of laying on of hands in order to alter or give Troubles, so they'll just start her off with that! Plus the threat of Bishop dissolving the table. Yeah, guys, you're missing the whole black death truffles aspect, for one. For two, this is what happens when you go off half-cocked with partial information, you start risking everything on one shot and if he touches her and she's telling the truth and she dissolves? Congratulations, Mitch, you just became the next Nathan I-shot-the-barnvatar (but-I-didn't-shoot-the-William-thing) Wuornos. For three, I realize there hasn't exactly been a lot of time, and I realize that telling everyone everything isn't anyone's idea of a good time, even Dwight's, but this would be useful information and prevent this bullshit from ever happening. No? No. Mind you I'm not convinced that either Dwight didn't try or that they would have listened had he given it a shot; these people are desperate and undertrained thank you so much for that, Vince, so it's entirely possible nothing could have prevented this in the first place. Still. Duke comes riding to the rescue, Audrey is the smart and quick-thinking Audrey we've come to know and love and uses Bishop's Trouble to dissolve the rest of her ropes, and no, they're going to let them go. Because that's what Audrey Parker would do, is let people go in the spirit of understanding and hope for a better future, not shoot or arrest them. Oh honey. So much oh honey, because she's still clearly more skittish than she's ever been before: now she knows she can be hurt, killed, affected by things that aren't environmental factors. (Audrey, honey, how'd you deal when you knew you could still be killed by bullets? I know Dwight's been around awhile but still.) At any rate. Off they go, with snark about Duke and his psychic friend, congratulations, Nathan, you have a new nickname, and threats that they'll find out if he can control his new Troubles if Mitch and his friends try this shit again. I just want to know what Dwight's going to do when he gets back into town. Or for that matter if they had a chance to update him about the Maraudrey split before he left, since that wasn't clear by the reference at the beginning of the ep.

And back at the Cape Rouge Duke is bringing her something that resembles a meal (can of something with a spoon sticking out of it) and telling her she's not going anywhere until they find out if she's connected to Audrey, not even to the Guard. Well, that's a quick and easy test! And sure, it's possible that Mara could have done it before but now that he's openly stated her release is contingent on them knowing whether or not the two women are magically linked (among other reasons), she's just going to go ahead and cut herself on her handcuffs to prove they're not. Again, this is some pretty Sarah Connor imagery here, I'm a little impressed. And a little wondering that, if that's on purpose, what is it all in aid of. James Cogan? At any rate, she's now got a giant honking cut on her wrist and Audrey likely doesn't, so that's that myth busted. Duke wants to know what she gets out of it. Well, she still has leverage over them in that she's the only one immune to the Troubles now, and she's their only means of talking to Nathan. I'd say that's pretty good leverage there! And again, she'll help Duke only in exchange for something she wants. Really good leverage. He needs her, he outright admitted it so, she's not the only one blurting shit out, and she's got the upper hand until and unless they're willing to write Nathan off and go Trouble-managing without any immunity. Whee! Not. Though this does imply that eventually she's going to get out of that hold, which would be nice. As certain other shows are demonstrating, having a McGuffin/psychopath in your basement is only amusing the first couple of episodes, and then it's just yet another boring plot device.

Audrey confirms that yes, she's fine, there's no cut, she of all people knows from sympathetic cuts and scars that don't belong to her and so on and so forth. But she worries that it means Mara's getting more dangerous, I'm not sure why aside from a general sense of, Mara without anything to bind her is a Mara with nothing to lose. Which is more something they all now know they know, and less something that's news to Mara. Audrey will now hang up the phone and have a monologue to what she thinks is probably an invisible Nathan. I'm not sure if she hopes he's there, or hopes he's not there and she's talking more to the idea of him, but this doesn't, actually, seem like the kind of thing she'd never say to him. More the kind of thing we don't often get to hear, because they don't get these still small moments. Except when there can be great angst brought by them. Nathan is, of course, there. Listening to her spill out all of her terror that she didn't used to know who she was, but she knew what she did, and now she knows who she is but not what she does. The secret here, of course, is that you are what you do, and when you can't do what you used to do anymore, who you are changes too. It's a vicious way to learn that lesson, though. And it's not a complete lesson in and of itself: what you do in your off-hours is as much who you are as what you do for your job, if not more. It's just Audrey hasn't had much in the way of off-hours, and to her way of thinking now that's all she's got, because she doesn't have the immunity that made her special. Well, no. But she still has the mode of thought that made it possible to think around the corners of, this is how this Trouble works, this is what's affecting the person, and the empathy to talk them down. Nathan promises her, for his benefit and courage since she can't hear him, that he has people, he's safe here, he's going to go meet up with them. That "safe" bit is awfully concerning to me.

As it should be! We panover the cemetery and Nathan calling out for Morgan and Glenn and everyone else, whoever they are, and oh that's not good, that's a body on the ground. Three gunshots or gunshot-looking things, center mass, and written in blood across Glenn's tombstone, EVEN GHOSTS CAN DIE. That is really a lot not good. I bet it'll fascinate Mara though! Well, Nathan, I guess you don't get any days off even in the ethereal world. Sorry. This is, to be fair to them, one of the least cliffhangery two-parters we've had in awhile; it's the cliffhanger of a Trouble more than of the metaplot, and they're doing better with their pacing as a result. I'm not thrilled that they gave Nathan all the leadership and problem-solving arc of being stuck somewhere he couldn't interact with his loved ones except with great difficulty and going through Mara, right after they failed to give us anything other than Audrey flailing for whatever she could. I mean, I understand why, and I don't think they've lost sight of who their heroine is, but it makes me that much more aggravated that we didn't get to see Audrey fighting Mara from within. Still, as pacing!fail goes this is much much better, guys, keep that part up.

Next week on Haven! Someone's figured out how to kill… ghosts, incorporeal spirits, whatever the fuck we're calling these guys. That's not good. But they're calling in the Darkside Seekers! Is this a Nick episode? Is he writing them again? Because YES. DO WANT. Audrey will continue to mirror Nathan with her I'm going to save him speech. Yes, yes, we know, get to the saving already.

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