Lost Girl: Season 4, Episode 04, Turn to Stone

Here’s the thing. I spent most of this episode a saying things a couple beats before they occurred. Things like . . .

Between this and Trick’s comment about the deathtrap, they’re definitely getting a break-in.

Tamsin’s gonna get wings.

mIt has to be the end of Tamsin’s life cycle; I’mma bet Valkyries only get a set numbers of resurrections. there’s got to be actual stakes. Also, explains wings.

Hale is not the man behind the curtain.

DARK. DARK BLOOD.

This episode is fairly predictable and the foreshadowing anything but subtle. Heck, the very lyrics of the Spice Girls song at the Dal point out Kenzi and Bo’s rift will be short.

But that does not make it a subpar episode. It’s remarkably much better and more effective than 4.02 and 4.03, both of which kept trying to yank the rug out from under our feet and change the plot’s directional course every 10 seconds. In a lot of ways, it’s better precisely because it’s not trying to surprise us.

Very hell-ish.

Here’s a secret about television writing: It doesn’t have to be surprising. It doesn’t have to be shocking. It doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel or cloud its metaphors in veils of smoke and mirrors. Most of the time, if something on a TV show truly surprises you, examine it, because either you missed something, or it was born of flawed logic and is a shocking swerve, a deux ex machina, a diabolus ex nihilo.

On the last season of Big Love, the ultimate ending was foreshadowed in at least three different ways, multiple times, one way so often I got a little annoyed with how obvious Chekov’s Gun was being waved around. Every Sopranos twist may take you by surprise as the action begins, but .5 seconds later you realize of course, that’s where it was heading all along, that’s where it had to be heading.

Or take Doctor Who, which is relevant to this episode in more ways than one. You know how a typical episode is going to end – world saved, Doctor cavorting, characters either redeemed or dead – the fun is getting there. And sure the solution is occasionally a new facet of the Doctor which fits inside what we know of him already, or a surprise revelation by a guest character, but mostly it’s something which has been well introduced, even in that very episode. Oh, he was killed in a way which would stop his heart? Well just this very episode, our med school student was listening to two sides of his chest and got a puzzled look on her face. VOILA! Two hearts. Two hearts is also a stunt Lost Girl pulled, though they went a step further and made it genetic and then made the mother the subject of the long game, and that, ladies and gentlemen, is how it’s done.

All these examples are television examples because surprises come cheaper and easier in movies, both because of the nature of a short story, and because you’re not as familiar with the world or characters, and plots function slightly differently, etc. That’s really a different essay. Point being, for a television episode to be good, it just has to have a legible plot/mystery/device, interesting characters, and narrative arcs which continue those which came before and extend into those coming after. It should do this while servicing the audience . . . and boy, does this episode ever; along with some helpful exposition.

Random Phallic Symbol of the Week

Audience Servicing / Acknowledgement / Answering (feel free to add in the comments)

  • Shout-out to Geraldine!
  • Kenzi notes how unsexy ‘Karen’ looks.
  • Tamsin “used to bang hydra’s at lunch.” 
  • Lauren hair and conditioner mentioned. I’m surprised Kenzi didn’t outright say hairporn.
  • A resolution to ‘did the runeglass work or why did it fail’ (which was discussed at length in this blog’s comments and I assume all over the interwebs).
  • Actual use of the word spybang, and Lauren’s acknowledgement Crystal’s moves are a near mirror for her own (which I discussed last week). Lauren’s always been the most self-aware, just rarely speaks it. This quasi-apologetic and terminology incorporation, coupled with the knowing smile, is a new kind of fan acknowledgement.
  • Dyson’s amused we’re finally seeing Kenzi’s room, “the inner sanctum.”

This episode was also chock-full of blatant answers and setup, and also set recycling and sexiness, starting with the very first scene. That boxing gym gets quite a workout.

Sex while being watched by a gargoyle. Just what every girl ever dreams of!

While Bo and Dyson’s romping is much more relaxed than in “Vexed,” the blocking and shadowing are similar. The whole thing feels just a bit weird, though. Bo’s still most in character, denying what she doesn’t want to face, punctuating her hate of rules and rituals with jabs and jibes, but this season is just a different show. Dyson actually comments that Bo is different, underscoring my belief the ‘off’-ness of all characters is important and going somewhere. They’re having cake and eating it. A lot of it. It can’t be netting much new audience; it wouldn’t make as much sense to newcomers. So where’s it going?

In addition to the character vibes, memory comes and goes as convenient. Bo remembers Lauren, though there’s some artificial distance placed there. Neither Bo nor Dyson mention the train. Tamsin’s selective knowledge of her powers and past lives and allegiances is ‘whateverisconvenient.’ Kenzi mentions macking on Dyson, but neglects the part where that was in essentially a parallel, Bo-less universe; perhaps she remembers the events without remembering her then-lack of memory.

Let’s talk about all of the parts where Bo and Kenzi are together again, hurray. Starting with their general banter, building through the Dal scene where they enjoy themselves and the killer soundtrack and some attractive extras, tackling Massimo together, then the scene at Lauren’s, rife with emotions and tension, and finally the ultimate declaration ‘we’re family, forever the end.’ It was beautiful to have this key part of the team back together, and also, it simply works. Kenzi’s romantic reveal was better than it would have been with anyone else on the cast, and Solo’s heartbreak with just a touch of attitude and flourish in the right places lands.

May we continue to share many more narratives.

Kenzi does mention to Bo how she’s “always alone/human,” something which is and will be crucial to Kenzi’s storyline, and Bo is properly conciliatory and all, until she’s not. Dayum, Bo, that’s a cold way to respond to your best friend kissing your not-even-boyfriend, especially considering how willing Lauren was to fogive you for full-out ex-sex. This reads as more evidence of Dark/OOC Bo.

Everything, in fact, is not just out of character but darker. Tamsin is the Harbinger of Doom, which just feels like it should be capitalized. Lauren examines the files of a fae who’s been feeding off his siblings: ‘Course of treatment? Oh, I dunno, maybe lay off the incest a little bit.’ We get a load of Dark Bo hints; the guard against malicious fae works on her, she says “I’m the new Bo,” she smiles at Massimo’s demise. Yes, make no mistake, she knew he’d go in for the hair. Indirect killing is her pattern. She’s done it with Slenderman, with the Land Wight, she kicks the food out of the Lich‘s reach, and plenty more . . . only now she’s graduated to enjoying it. Also, Massimo’s ‘mommy’ is clearly The Morrigan, who really attracts the beings with mommy issues.

Then Lauren is chained in a dungeon with Crystal (though if she comes to trust Crystal, that fairly seals the deal Crystal won’t doublecross again. Storytelling pragmatism). The way much of the footage is shown through the spy camera, the idea of torture and threatening to kill Crystal, the odd disjointed angles on some of the shots, we’re clearly meant to feel this is Very Bad.

I've never seen the Saw films, but this feels like those ads looked.

Speaking of bad, Lauren’s a badass. I mean, she’s always a badass, she’s just not often this blatant about it. But all their characterizations are just a touch off this season (spoken of somewhat above), and looks like we’re seeing some of Lauren’s past personality emerge. It still feels weird, though. I’ll give you her yanking her restraints off and throwing the folder feels like when she snapped at Lachlan. But she’s usually smarter than to provoke someone, especially when she’s got no power to leverage. This is all showing off and antagonization. And she’d be smart enough to know the person behind the curtain might not be Hale. After all, she’s not been hiding from Hale in the middle of nowhere.

All that aside, I like this backstory gives Lauren a secondary explanation for staying under the Ash’s thumb for so long, a better reason for not just taking Nadia and running long ago. She needed to get off the human grid, she wanted to atone, and what better way to do both those things than living in a supernatural compound and helping heal legions of sick?

The rest of the backstory could be pulled out of thin air, but it’s also consistent with her resourcefulness; helping Kenzi concoct things out of condiments, living in a jungle for months, etc. Now, though, we have a mysterious brother in the mix. A brother whose whereabout or demise she carefully avoids. Cue the soap opera music!

They really like lighting just a third of the frame. Damn, so effective.

This episode ends with Bo echoing things said at the beginning of the episode, and the series: she doesn’t play by their rules. But then the Una Mens declare her blood has betrayed her a pick a side.

That side is Dark.

Soap opera music swells, aaaaaand CUT TO BLACK.

Again, just so happy for these two to be back together.

Further Predictions

Still feel the Morrigan and/or Una Mens snatched Lauren and Crystal, but the voice could possibly be Trick. He wasn’t the one who opened the door, though.

Bo’s new clan could lend nuance to idea of Dark. Though we’ve seen some Light fae be nefarious and awful, hopefully we also get some Dark fae (besides Tamsin) who are presented as complicated or wanting to do ‘right.’

Tamsin mentioned it’s not exactly fair that her former-life-self is who chose the Dark, but I don’t agree with Dyson she’ll get to re-choose. Instead, I think she’ll join with Bo/Hale/Lauren to . . . do some form of eradicating the Light/Dark system. Challenging all the systems, including binary systems, is what this show is about. It’s perfect.

What We Got Right

Definitely going darker.

Heavier weight class of fae, whom Bo tackles head-on boobs-on in this episode.

I mentioned the runeglass may have worked, though that wasn’t my theory; it was one presented in my comments which made sense. Massimo revealed it was to ‘mark’ Bo for another plane.

Tamsin needs and wants peace, love, and understanding. Not necessarily Bo-mance.

Massimo getting dead in retaliation for his sexist/molester ways.

Crystal's skirt, Lauren's folder, various fires, Dyson's shirtcuffs, the Una Men's lair, lots of red accents this episode.

Stray Observations

– ‘It is like occupied France in here.’

– Rock music equals bacchanalia? Huh. That’s what the preacher always told me.

– ‘If you’re good, you can go in all the stores.’ That’s the cleanest way I’ve ever heard to refer to that.

– Also, Kenzi gets her hand all up in Lauren’s bush. 

– Kenzi stole the Twig of Zamora. Hale is of Clan Zamora. Man, I should have done a whole section on double entendres.

– ‘She just got her wings. You know what that means?’ ‘Monthly cramps. Bloating.’

– ‘Ambiguously fae duo.’ ALL OF THE COOKIES TO THAT WRITER.

– Speaking of, a lot of the writing was fairly agile, but nothing so nimble as landing Massimo’s murderous bit on Bo’s line about not giving women forced haircuts. Sheeeeeeeet.

– Weeping Angel feels of Dr Who’s ‘Blink,’ down to the stingers.

– I can’t tell if Kenzi’s room is Bo’s room redressed and shot from a low angle, or if they built a new room with similar parts.

– No way they ‘planted’ that Lauren plant wall two seasons ago. Nice bit of retconning.

– Friend-of-Blog Emily says: “I liked Lauren’s green wall better when the lighting on it was poor enough that it just looked like the portal to some fuzzy black Muppet dimension.”

Comments
17 Responses to “Lost Girl: Season 4, Episode 04, Turn to Stone”
  1. Rachel says:

    I’m sooo down with comprehensibility. Connecting plot strands from last season to now (and beyond) makes me happy, and also it is just making the characters more interesting.

    Long-term continuity things I liked lots:

    – Bo struggling/playing out some of the dark stuff she’s been struggling with all along: knee-jerk reaction to lie, ignore things, make selfish decisions when she feels emotionally threatened/cornered (a reaction she doesn’t seem to be aware of in general); not being aware of others and her impact on them
    – Kenzi felt more like Kenzi to me this ep, I think it’s because Bo’s back
    – Kenzi’s feelings of being alone and helpless and vulnerable as a human. It’s also, to me, a deepening of her character when she voiced that so clearly.
    – Bo doesn’t always see Dyson clearly, and that’s interesting
    – Bo and Kenzi
    – When Lauren trusts people, she often gets burned
    – Bo and Lauren’s connection
    – I felt a bit bad for Dyson — Bo kind of used him

    I wonder if undercurrents in Bo throughout the seasons are becoming more pronounced now, and potentially add a lot of interestingness to her. Lots of stuff she would have to face to grow, too.

    Season 3-now continuity things I liked lots:

    – Lauren’s backstory, and desire for atonement
    – Rune glass (yay they are weaving this in, in effective ways! Even though I don’t fully understand the spell, I’m learning and I can follow that story (i.e. it’s not being dropped)). It makes sense.
    – Taft connection. I still don’t think Lauren went with him just to escape the fae (who was the mysterious caller she talked to 3×5 and 3x? — from Taft’s lab?). And Bo has some doubts, which she mentions in this episode (Lauren’s too smart just to pick up and have gone with Taft…).
    – Lauren growth I hope — she is sick of being duped and used, yet I hope she continues to hold a deep sense of morality
    – Characters have felt off to me since the dawning. Could this have been intentional ever since then? Is the dawning fully over?

    I think I like the resetting of things. That’s a risk.

    And, like you, I’m all for comprehensible. Characters can grow, and nuance and layeredness can develop, when viewers can connect dots and can join in on the ‘getting there.’

    What’s up with Dyson hiding info from Bo about Lauren? And about _______?

    idk… thoughts? And I caught the hydra comment too. 9 heads… go Tamsin! 😉

  2. Maigray says:

    All I want to know is what the symbolism is behind the names Crystal and Amber; because that cannot be coincidence.

    • Melanie says:

      Ha! Hadn’t even noticed that.

      Down the rabbit hole of considering how amber is a resin hardened by time and the elements . . . or amber and crystal are just favorite accessories of a particular writer.

  3. keets says:

    What about ” For giving me the freedom to love…and I do.” ?

    • Melanie says:

      It felt like Lauren emphasizing she still loves Bo. It’s possible Bo said the line ‘and I do’ about herself, but it feels like all was on the note. I also think the freedom line suggest Lauren left her necklace for Bo, to show Bo she has made up her mind ,and Bo was a part of it. I think the writers enjoy being opaque and this isn’t meant to be completely clear until later.

      Anything specifically about it?

      • keets says:

        I was just curious what you thought about that scene. Mostly because, for me, it was the only part of the episode where I felt like Bo was having real heartfelt emotions, as opposed to the cold super Fae she’s becoming under influences. I also enjoyed having ‘Bo and Kenzi back together’ but the title of the episode really reverberated in my mind while watching them. Kenzi looked like the Lost one to me, hurting, seeking comfort, and getting a stoney, impatient, version of it, but glad to have it all the same.

        • Melanie says:

          Yes, Kenzi’s being quite beset upon this season. I’m interested to see which direction they’ll take that; will she be a saint, or will she (temporarily) snap.

  4. I’ve seen several blogs refer to the idea that The Morrigan is the mother of Mossimo, the Druid. What have I missed that suggests this idea to people?

    • Melanie says:

      When Massimo is crying to Bo over the hair, he said ‘my mommy needs it, and I need her to need me.’ It ties in to his trying to ask to come back and live with Evony – and also Evony being the only character he’s meaningfully interacted with this season, before this episode..

      I actually didn’t take it literally. but if one does . . . then does that mean the Morrigan had an affair with a human? I don’t remember Lost Girl spelling out if there’s a way for two fae to have a human child. And they’ve made it clear he’s human, last episode and this.

  5. vexundorma says:

    What a difference one writer makes. All the show’s main problems persist but they’re not as blatantly exposed because we almost believe there’s a story being told, that the characters are on a journey and even at which point of that journey they are. Can he pull a Michael Straczynski and write at least half of a season? For the sake of the audience?

    • Melanie says:

      I’m not familiar with the other things Straczynski has written for TV, only film and the occasional random episodes of Murder, She Wrote. And serial TV and film are just such different beasts.

  6. overainbows says:

    I enjoyed this ep. The first three fell flat to me. I was very tired when I bulk watched them but still. I think it’s safe to assume The Morrigan is Massimo’s mother. In s01 they mentioned human x fae children tended to be human in the wisp of the willow case, no?

    I’m really excited as they finally seem to be adressing Bo’s dark side after the end of s02 seemed to be heading there but turned out to be the flop Yawning storyline that never meant to address that in the first place. I hope by ‘your blood has spoken’ they meant she shares her parents tendency towards killing (and enjoying it), more like a similarity of attitude due her choices other than some biological thing, or it’d be the Dawning all over again. It’s much more interesting to see Bo deal with these issues if they are treated as results of personality + environment other than just nature / external influences. And it would lead back to her mantra about choice more powerfully than the kind of choice she had to make in the Dawning (choosing a side in a big moment x choices she makes everyday in every aspect of her life in the most varied situations).

    What I didn’t like was Tamsin conflating killing with being Dark. Again they have trouble following the season 1/2 definition of the Dark and the Light, which in my opinion was a lot more interesting. Now the Dark are just the bad guys. So the Light don’t kill for lesser reasons? The Dark simply seemed to let things run more freely and don’t like to have authorities meddling in their affairs all the time, which might lead to more tolerance for violence, but also aligns very well with Bo’s lifestyle/ideology. It would also be interesting if they took this road instead of showing how Bo thinks she is so different and defiant of the system when she actually has a lot in common with it (and it’s most despised side), how much many of its values are impregnated in her and used by her to make her revolution, therefore being carried into the new system she proposes. Anyways, wherever they go from here, I really like the impression it left that yep, Bo, the system is much bigger than you, you try to escape it, but it’s also within you, it’s part of who you are, it assimilates you in more ways than one.

    Question: How old is the Tamsin played by Rachel Skarsten supposed to be in comparison to humans? I assumed she would be in her early 20’s but she seemed very teenagey with the self image problems, obliviousness to sex, etc.

    • Melanie says:

      Will o’ the Wisp! *slaps forehead* Of course! Thanks for pointing that out.

      I’m cautiously optimistic about going darker, but after this season, even if they keep the dark, I’d love to see a return to Season 1 format, where there was a unique mythology-based case of the week, with the season’s long arc playing out quietly in the background until the last couple episodes. That’s perhaps just me.

      I, too, have comments in my notes about conflating Dark with killing. They made pretty clear right off the bat the Light kill, and manipulate, and imprison, and torture, etc. I decided to leave it alone and chalk it up to this being a very young Tamsin with very simplistic ideas about the system; ie the biases most of us carry into anything with a Dark/Light binary. Thanks for nothing, Star Wars.

      Speaking of Tamsin’s simplistic ideas, I think the last incarnation is supposed to be her full-grown ‘form,’ but yes she still feels very young. Kenzi still referred to her as a baby, and she’s only a couple weeks old. I think until/unless her memories return she’s going to mature much faster than humans but is still going to have some extremely youthful tendencies. I’d say she feels like about 16 here, but a 16 who hasn’t lived much and still doesn’t get double entendres.

  7. takeela74 says:

    Two things:

    My goodness Dyson. He knew she loved Lauren and continually slept with her right after Lauren was mentioned. It’s still sad to watch after all this time.

    The guard against malicious fae: Three times in this episode it set off when Bo was near it. When Kenzi tried to jump over it, Bo was still close by. Thinking even without being soaked in water Kenzi could’ve gotten out by herself if Bo wasn’t near her. Then Bo would’ve/should’ve figured out something was wrong before the Una Mens told her.

    Lol Sorry on a LG binge.

  8. Shaun says:

    Another big elephant in the room the writers conveniently glossed over: Dyson knowing where Lauren was when he knew the whole time and he didn’t get called out on it. She’s a doctor for goodness sakes, she could’ve helped Bo with her memory issues.
    Unless 4/5 when Bo said Dyson was off looking for Lauren and Bo never calling him to tell him she found her, was their way of making fun of the lying jack waffle

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  1. […] other thing which enables Hale’s death is something which gets mentioned in passing in “Turn to Stone,” and that’s Kenzi stealing the Twig of Zamora. The twig was one of Hale’s family […]



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