THE STRAIN — “The Battle For Red Hook” — Episode 209 (Airs September 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: Kevin Durand as Vasiliy Fet. CR: Michael Gibson/FX
There was no Gus (Miguel Gomez, Southpaw) or Quinlan (Rupert Penry-Jones, Whitechapel), so the badassery was on low-level in tonight’s episode of The Strain, but we still got some decent action… I guess. Apparently, “The Battle for Red Hook” was a decisive victory for humankind, but I’m not really cheering. In fact, I would have preferred if they’d lost…
THE STRAIN — “The Battle For Red Hook” — Episode 209 (Airs September 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Samantha Mathis as Justine Feraldo, Paulino Nunes as Frank Kowalski. CR: Michael Gibson/FX
First of all, the love triangle between Fet (Kevin Durand, Real Steel, Legion) and Dutch (Ruta Gedmintas) and her estranged, prodigal girlfriend is old and tired. Somehow it feels like of all the priorities to have, fighting a messy battle over one woman seems petty and trite. Who really gives a shit who’s with who or who’s in love when vampire with phallic appendages are sucking people dry. Get over it, and move on. Out of the ashes of that love triangle, however, comes the first glimmer of potential romance between Nora (Mia Maestro) and Fet.
After last episode’s close call with Kelly (Natalie Brown) just barely missing her chance to kidnap Zach (Max Charles), he finally realizes that his dad Eph (Corey Stoll) was right, and he should probably quit being a brat. However, Kelly not one to let death or derision keep her from her son, manages to almost get her hands on him again when Nora, Fet, and Zach attempt to restore the power grid. If you’re wondering where Eph was, he was doing everything but parenting. He was providing shoddy backup for Abe Setrakian (David Bradley) in his face-off against Eichhorst (Richard Sammel). I hope Eph invests in some sort of target practice, because missing his mark is not going to cut it. Just when you think it’s over for Eichhorst, he manages to get away. There’s a reason why that guy is still alive. He’s good in a pickle.
THE STRAIN — “The Battle For Red Hook” — Episode 209 (Airs September 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Corey Stoll as Ephraim Goodweather, Max Charles as Zack Goodweather, Mia Maestro as Nora Martinez, Kevin Durand as Vasiliy Fet. CR: Michael Gibson/FX
The Strain on TV has taken a huge detour from the books in that humanity is actually battling what’s going on as seen in this episode. The books paint a vastly different (and quite superior) story. There’s really not a lot of horror going on this season, with the exception of the little kindervamps that are terrifying to look at. That’s a huge problem for me, but alas, there was all out war at Red Hook, complete with motivational speeches invoking unity and other mushy stuff. Eichhorst and Kelly eventually come to Red Hook prepared with an army of vamps that initially have the upper hand, just by sheer numbers alone, but thanks to Nora and Fet getting the power grid back up and running, the UV lamps burn them to a crisp, and the day is won.
That’s pretty much it. It was a big battle, with a lesbian makeout session and some of Sammel’s signature shady malevolence thrown in. The Master/Gabriel Bolivar (Jack Kesy) must have taken a day off with Gus and Quinlan. There was a little hint dropped, however. A page from the Occido Lumen, the highly sought after ancient book with all the answers, showed an angel and part of a crescent moon. This was a very brief, and miniscule look at The Master’s origins.
THE STRAIN — “The Battle For Red Hook” — Episode 209 (Airs September 6, 10:00 pm e/p) Pictured: (l-r) Max Charles as Zack Goodweather, Corey Stoll as Ephraim Goodweather. CR: Michael Gibson/FX
I’m starting to feel a terrible sense of ambivalence at the show. We’re nine episodes in, and what we have here is very little creepiness, and a whole lot of procedural bullshit, which is tedious. I’m holding out due to loyalty, but I can assure you, had I not fallen in love with the source material I’d be done with the show. Hopefully, they can get it back to being scary in the next few episodes.