Grimm: Beginning of the End, Parts One and Two (episode 21 & 22)
May 21, 2016 7:13 AM - Season 5, Episode 21 - Subscribe

Black Claw makes a shocking move against Hank, which sends Nick on a warpath; Hadrian's Wall seeks an enigmatic man named Bonaparte; Adalind and Renard try to adjust to their new reality. (Season finale)

“It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.” - Emiliano Zapata

AV Club - The nightmare of the century is alive in Portland in a war-torn Grimm finale
posted by oh yeah! (14 comments total)
I expected the cliff-hanger, but they cleared up enough plot lines to make me happy. Juliette's back? Pre-hexenbiest? So now Nick has to choose between two attractive women, the show must be written by someone who didn't date much in high school (looks at self in the mirror).

A great season ender, I like Renard's second thoughts, not too blatant. Sorry for Meisner, I liked his character. I half expected Diana to feel his death since he took care of her for a while. And I wonder how they will handle her next season, she's too powerful to keep around, maybe she'll be the Big Bad.

Renard killing Bonaparte was good, though I was expecting Diana to fry him from a distance after the red-headed girlfriend's death.

That's a lot of dead bodies to account for.
posted by beowulf573 at 7:36 AM on May 21, 2016

I've been hating how kill-happy a lot of shows have been this season, and especially dislike the "someone will die...but who?" foreshadowing/promo tactic, but Meisner's death was a well-done shocker. I'm sorry to lose him from the show, but what a terrific scene for him and Renard.

And Renard being puppeteer-ed into killing Bonaparte made me laugh - he was perfectly ready to watch Bonaparte kill Nick, but now next season he can try to spin it as if he was Bonaparte's unwitting pawn. (And his "Well, I am the mayor" line to Adalind was another good laugh.)

Monorosalee baby! I don't really want another prop baby for the cast to juggle (though I nominate Bud for emergency-nanny duty) should the series last longer than the pregnancy, but Monroe's reaction to the news was adorable.
posted by oh yeah! at 8:24 AM on May 21, 2016

I was not happy to hear of her being pregnant. Maybe when the show's ending, but it's freaking terrible to have her pregnant while they're on the run from Black Claw., ugh, I hate that kind of timing and pregnant girl in peril who can't be the action girl they need stuff.

So.....Diana's already a homicidal murderer. That's...such a delight. I think the actress playing her is gorgeous and doing a great job of it, but hoooooo boy, was I hoping she'd just stick to killing those who really deserve it. I didn't like Rachel either, but you could have just scared her off rather than gift-wrapping her. That's very worrisome. God, I wish someone was around to mentor her in the ways of nice morality and not becoming a homicidal hexenbiest. Girl will probably end up ruling the world, we need to make sure she's not mouth foaming crazy. Like someone should start by explaining why Mommy and Daddy probably shouldn't be matched up with voodoo dolls. Adalind needed to give a much better suggestion as to why that's not a good idea. Also, I dread when Diana goes after Nick as a rival for daddy--I'm surprised she didn't already instead of nicely agreeing to pass on the message.

Conrad was a very scary villain. That ring trap, ugh. But we're done with him now!

Trubel was the only one really upset about Meisner. It was a good scene, though.

Oh, since when do we have another police department that's entirely made up of vesen?!?! Seriously, I thought we had the whopping 2 so far on the police force (Renard and uh, that guy in one episode) and that was IT. What the heck?

And Renard is now full on evil, apparently. Oy. But you'd think he'd get that being a political puppet is a bad idea, come on.

I'm not sure what to make of the return of Juliette. Apparently they created "Eve" by making her an emotionless robot, and healing everything led to Juliette's feelings coming back. I know everyone thinks the actress is pretty wooden and mostly I wouldn't argue that, but you could definitely tell it was Juliette by her face after that.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:32 AM on May 21, 2016

Oh yeah, I forgot: good use of Wu's new powers. Even if his not-a-wesen face reminds me of a Neanderthal, that worked well to sic him on cops.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:46 AM on May 21, 2016

It's not just you, jenfullmoon, Bitsie Tulloch called him Neanderwu on twitter. (her finale live-tweets are pretty cute - I like this one of Giuntoli trying to do the handcuff trick)

I was not happy to hear of her being pregnant. Maybe when the show's ending, but it's freaking terrible to have her pregnant while they're on the run from Black Claw., ugh, I hate that kind of timing and pregnant girl in peril who can't be the action girl they need stuff.

Considering that they have a shortened order for season 6, I think the show probably is ending. But I think it's more likely that they'll play the "don't get between the mama bear and her cubs" card with Rosalee than to have her turn into a helpless damsel.

I'm not sure what to make of the return of Juliette. Apparently they created "Eve" by making her an emotionless robot, and healing everything led to Juliette's feelings coming back. I know everyone thinks the actress is pretty wooden and mostly I wouldn't argue that, but you could definitely tell it was Juliette by her face after that.

I'm sure it's Juliette, the only question is whether the Stick treated the hexenbiest as an infection to be expelled or if she'll retain any abilities. It didn't cure Monroe of being Blutbad, but he was Wesen-born. Back before they had Wu learn to control the lycanthropia, I figured that they'd use the Stick to cure him of it, and then have it as an option for permanently suppressing Adalind's powers and/or protecting themselves from Diana. Guess we'll find out next year.
posted by oh yeah! at 11:15 AM on May 21, 2016

They didn't do the hexenbiest sprit leaving the body like when Adalind did when she lost her powers, that might be a clue.
posted by beowulf573 at 11:35 AM on May 21, 2016 [1 favorite]

Oh I think the ambiguity was a very deliberate we-don't-know-if-this-is-ending rorschach type thing. You want to believe that they've just lost their big magic gun? You can. Want to believe Juliette is back to like she was before? You can.

I mean, they have her be scared and Nick say "Juliette?" to imply it's her back to her old self. Then later Trubel says she'll stay there with Eve... and there's no "Who?" or sense of confusion from the actress that she doesn't know who that is. Now, COULD she be shell-shocked and just not reacting? Sure. Or she could be back to being Eve, same as ever, with the fear moment just a passing thing as she healed. It was very well done.

I was very happy with this wrap-up, and if this is where the whole thing had ended I'd have found it pretty satisfying. We got some smoopy tell Nick I love him from Adalind, more creepy Diana, a little more depth to how Renard was slotting into this role, etc.

The all-vesen police precinct I thought was fun and I was just fine with it. It seemed like a pretty reasonable set of machinations, particularly with Nick seeming to be less plugged into the vesen world this last season or two. Maybe the ongoing from this mess is going to be the team deciding they finally need to start looking more big picture.

Really they could go anywhere with it. There's been a giant slaughter that needs to be coped with and explained. Will Renard take the reins on this with the absence of BC's top brass or just continue to be pushed around? Will he decide he's going to re-steer local BC? Is Nick going to have to go along with that and find a way to be a part of a new order, but maybe one less chaotic and murder-y? Will Trubel and Juliette try to run a new resistance-ish operation?

Nick operating as unkillable grimm-machine was great and they played that just right for my taste - getting shot and stabbed HURTS but if you're determined you get back up more pissed than before. Wonder if the temptation of that power will play into next season? So long as the shard doesn't become a oh-no-don't-let-it-get-stolen macguffin.

I was not happy to hear of her being pregnant. Maybe when the show's ending, but it's freaking terrible to have her pregnant while they're on the run from Black Claw., ugh, I hate that kind of timing and pregnant girl in peril who can't be the action girl they need stuff.

Anything is possible, but I think that would be a bit of a divergence from how they've written her for years now. She's tough and in the mix - though she's never been a big fighter - so I think it's way more likely we'll see her get some requests to take a background spot and her ripping that person a... let's say, freshly fabricated posterior exit portal.
posted by phearlez at 7:16 AM on May 23, 2016 [1 favorite]

Re: Hank getting captured. I'm usually not okay with hostage plots, but this one being just a big diversion was actually kind of cool, except....

...did those two wesen just tell a black man that he doesn't know what it's like being oppressed?
posted by Mogur at 10:26 AM on May 23, 2016

What do you guys hope to do here?
Shut up.
You think kidnapping me is going to get you some kind of freedom you didn't have.
You know what's going on. You work with the grimm.
I know the cost of whatever you get out of this is going to be very high.
You're not vesen, you'll never understand.
I wonder if you do.
I didn't see that as all that ironic, but maybe that's my failure of imagination and because of all the narrow factions Black Claw has pushed back on rather than general society. I'm not sure we ever got a good idea of what the hell the deal was with the Royals. They seemed to subjugate vesen somehow though they had enough seemingly willing collaborators and no clear sphere of influence that it's hard to know. I'm not sure the show ever knew, given how quickly they just swept it under the rug.

The main reason it didn't seem that ironic to me is that all the supposed gripes black claw members ever voiced in our hearing had to do with hiding their true selves, both in appearance and in action. They're amassing power now so they can avoid being slaughtered when they reveal themselves but we're not currently seeing them dealing with the sort of oppression african americans do. And the show seemed to take a pretty clear judgmental stand on the actions that BC vesen wanted to undertake - darwinian intra-vesen relations, violent old rituals, etc. I think that scene would have had to be a little more on the nose to really feel comically ironic.

It's a shame we didn't get more insight into the people in black claw before they destroyed the vesen council. That sort of self-suppression would be very interesting to see the pushback on. We got a little of it over the few years with Rosalee talking about finding them kind of scary but that pretty well disappeared when BC entered the show. By that point we'd even started seeing Rosalee's contact as a pretty accessible personality.

It would be nice to see some more interesting ambiguity here in the presumably final season. They did some fun stuff with that in Angel, where Greenwalt came from.
posted by phearlez at 11:29 AM on May 23, 2016

[Renard] was perfectly ready to watch Bonaparte kill Nick

I dunno; I was getting a pretty strong Return of the Jedi vibe in the multiple scenes in which Bonaparte zauger-throttles somebody while Renard stands by looking pained.

Nice use of The Stick to turn Nick into an unstoppable Grimm fury; had he already realized that when he turned back, or was it just Nick doing his usual boneheaded-decision-works-out-OK-anyway thing?

Why did Trubel and Eve stay behind in the tunnels? It felt like a very arbitrary split-our-protagonists-up-into-groups thing, which makes me wonder if next season's opener is going to see one of the groups captured.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 5:59 PM on May 28, 2016

My vote is for Nick winging it re: the Magic Stick - I'd swear he had a moment of, "Wait, why am I still aliv- ooohhhhh right."

I think the split-up was because nobody knows if she's Eve (major badass) or Juliette (kinda helpless) or what. If she's more-Juliette-than-Eve she's safer hiding with Trubel down in the tunnels (nobody knows what the situation is outside, for all they know BC has gained control of the town and the Team Grimm members who find a way out will be captured immediately (I think you may well be right about next season's opener one way or the other)); if she's more-Eve-than-Juliette she & Trubel can certainly delay or stop any pursuit if the BC manage to get past Nick.

Overall, I thought this was a great ending to a good season (although Not Enough Bud . . . . )

And in a meta kind of way, I think they did a great job setting themselves up for whatever comes next - if the next half-season is truly the end they can wrap things up in a satisfying manner, if they get more episodes but still no Season 7 they can stretch the "BC uprising" plot out further no problem, and if they actually get renewed for further seasons they've laid the groundwork for taking the show in new directions (I don't see Nick staying a Portland cop after he got arrested for assaulting his superior officer/new mayor, yeah?), so they can still finish the current plotlines and have somewhere to go for future seasons.
posted by soundguy99 at 8:13 AM on May 30, 2016

So, DragonCon is finally having Grimm guests again this year - barring sudden cancellations, Jacqueline Toboni, Sasha Roiz, David Giuntoli, Reggie Lee, & Bitsie Tulloch will be doing panels, and I will be doing my damnedest to see them all. If anyone has a good question I can ask, let me know.
posted by oh yeah! at 8:09 PM on August 15, 2016

Well, darn - 'Grimm' to End After Season 6 on NBC

Here's hoping the writers were told in time, or were smart enough to sense the imminent cancellation, to write a non-cliffhanger finale. I'm glad the news broke before con, it would have sucked if the cast all knew but had to lie about it to us all weekend, now at least we can commiserate.
posted by oh yeah! at 4:49 AM on August 30, 2016

Little clip (not mine) of one of the DragonCon Grimm panels, about on-set pranks.

Made it to all 4 of the Grimm panels (Sunday pictures) - Friday's was just Reggie Lee, the rest of the cast was still filming and took a red-eye to arrive Saturday morning. They all seemed pretty enthusiastic about season 6; they had just come from filming episode 3 or 4, and had seen scripts through 5 or 6. I asked during the Reggie Lee solo panel whether he thought the writers had known about the cancellation early enough to plan a satisfying ending, given how they love writing cliffhanger season finales so far, and he said he thought so. Also there's a possibility of a love interest for Wu.

There was a question at one of the group panels about how Lee's Wu-walk, and the other cast members teased him into re-enacting it on-stage - the way he walks over to Nick & Hank's desk with the latest file, drops it on their desk, does that little tilt of his hips and head. It came up again at a later panel and Toboni did it too. They all told fond stories of Silas Weir Mitchell, and how he basically IS Monroe.

It's a cliche to say it, but they really do seem like a cast that all gets along and all know how lucky they have been to be on a show with a cast and crew that all get along for multiple seasons. There was a very poignant moment in the last Monday panel where Reggie Lee said that it just really hit home that the show was ending and that they wouldn't be together as a group anymore.
posted by oh yeah! at 7:21 AM on September 11, 2016 [2 favorites]

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