Oh, Snowflakes. I know. This season is super boring. But we’re almost done, and then we’ll get Vachon! And Tracy Vetter! And Livia! So on we go!
Two uniforms are on the beat, and some dude is watching them through a – ventilation grate? Or something? I dunno. The cops pass, and the dude exits the grate. Oh, he’s homeless. Sad Panda. He’s looking through the trash and finds a kaleidescope, but his moment of joy is interrupted by another guy who dresses like a ninja and calls him trash, just before incinerating him with a flamethrower.
Dude. Not cool.
The beat cops didn’t see this all go down, of course; they just found the body. Schanke posits that a flamethrower isn’t exactly inconspicuous, and Nick figures the dude went through the ventilation grate – which is actually access to service shafts and other ventilation systems that go on for miles.
Nat is concerned about Nick going after a firebug – because duh, vampires go up like kindling. Schanke complains about going in after the dude and protecting the “mole people”, and then it’s Flashback Time!
1860s America. Nick, Janette, and Lacroix stop for the day at an abandoned cabin with a root cellar. Lacroix’s complaining about Nick never hunting and Janette’s laughing at him and BOOM – runaway slaves in the cellar. Uh-oh.
Back in Toronto’s ventilation systems, Nick and Schanke are wandering around with a map and one flashlight. No backup, no protective gear, nuthin’. Seems legit.
They’re going to meet up with another team who’s working from the other end of the system. They wander through someone’s laundry room – shirts are hanging from an improvised drying rack – and come up on a dead end. I’m thinking that’s not the last time it’ll happen.
Meanwhile, Nat is freaking out over the body on her table. I know death by fire is a gruesome way to go, but you’d think Nat would be able to handle it. Squeamish people don’t become MEs, you know?
Schanke takes a look at the map and says something about how the map’s never right. Nick’s all, “You’ve been down here?” and after some prodding, Schanke admits that his dad was a sewerworker. Nick doesn’t see anything wrong with that – good for you, Nick, rising above your feudal beginnings! – but Schanke was teased mercilessly about it as a kid. Aw, poor Schanke. And fuck those kids. How did they think their privileged little lives worked so well?
In another part of the tunnels, a woman is filling a bucket with water. Flamethrower dude shows up, predictably. Poor woman. But Schanke and Nick can actually see the flames and discover that the dude went down into further tunnels, so they follow. Backup’s on the way, obviously, but who knows if they’ll be able to find our detectives?
They’re walking along when Nick hears footsteps: someone’s following them. He and Schanke split up, and Nick finds a teen who’s big on attitude and rightly doesn’t trust cops to do anything but round up him and all the other people living in the tunnels. Nick says that helping them could keep him alive. “Who says anyone down here wants to live?” he retorts, and it’s back to the Underground Railroad.
Lacroix wants to eat the man and boy who are in the cellar, but Nick wants to help them. Lacroix backs off, but Janette warns Nick that the slaves are being pursued, and thus are a danger to the vampires – and Lacroix isn’t going to let it go.
I have to say, this episode is well-paced. I haven’t been bored yet. I’m sure that will change.
Captain Cohen sends a bunch of unis down into the tunnels to find the boys, and then asks Nat when she’ll have an ID on the first victim. Nat says she’s going to let the intern handle it, and Cohen – gently – asks if this is Nat’s first burn victim. It is, and Nat confesses that she doesn’t know if she can handle it.
Nick, Schanke, and the kid find the second victim – so I guess the fire they saw had risen from the lower level? That was kind of confusing. Anyway, Schanke and the kid go off to find the victim’s family, and Nick is on his own after the murderer.
Schanke finally gets radio reception – he thinks – but it’s really the murderer, and Schanke gives him the location of the second murder and his location relative to it. Obviously Schanke couldn’t know that, but damn. I don’t feel good about his chances.
The victim’s family isn’t at home, so the kid – Danny – taps on the pipes to get their attention. “Phone call,” he tells Schanke. The vic’s husband shows up – with their baby.
Meanwhile, Nick’s wandering around, and comes up on a corner. He eases around it and sees the glowing tip of the flamethrower. He and the murderer have a nice little conversation, where Nick says he’s a detective and the murderer calls himself “Dragon”. He says he has a job to do, and we’re back to the cabin in the south.
The people chasing the slaves have shown up at the cabin. Nick opens the door and they ask if it’s his place, to which he says, “I’m here, am I not?” They want to have a look around, and Nick lets them in. He mojos the main guy into thinking that the men have gone in the opposite direction, and the guy leaves. Oh, Nick the Hero. Always so noble and perfect.
In the tunnels, Nick is still chatting with Dragon about being an “exterminator”. Ugh. This guy gives me the willies. Anyway, Dragon runs off, but Nick follows, and gets an arm on fire for his trouble.
At the precinct, Nat tells a story about seeing a car on fire while on a family vacation. Turns out fire’s one of her fears, and she’s not desensitized enough to do her job. The captain says she understands.
Schanke delivers the news about the second victim, then goes out to meet Nick, who’s a little late. Dragon had said something about “taking out the nest”, so Nick asks Danny if there’s any place that could be called such. Danny’s reluctant to tell the cops about it – obviously – but he does finally say that there’s a place on the lowest level called The Camp that houses about 20 people – including a few families.
Night has fallen in the American South, and the plantation enforcers have found the Railroad Man who was supposed to take Jonah and his son North. They kill the Railroad Man, then set fire to the cabin – with the two men and all three vampires in it.
In the tunnels, it’s a race to see who’ll get to The Camp first. Schanke suggests that Danny use the “phone” – tapping on the pipes – to call ahead and warn people. But of course, Dragon hears it too, and ups his pace.
As the cabin burns around them. Nick refuses to leave Jonah and his son to the plantation enforcers. Lacroix and Janette leave, and Jonah, after seeing what the three really are, asks Nick to kill him and his boy before the fire does.
Captain Cohen tells her own story of fear, involving her first partner, a shootout, and friendly fire. Her fire. She encourages Nat to face her fear and conquer it, to become stronger. It’s really a beautiful conversation, a lovely moment of two women building each other up in a traditionally male workplace. Sometimes, this show gets it just right. I only wish it happened more often.
Nat goes down to the lab and relieves her intern.
In the cabin, Nick wraps the child in his cloak and tells Jonah to stay behind him. They go right out through the front door, with Nick all vamped out. Most of the enforcers run away, but Nick kills their leader. Jonah and his son run off toward the river, but Nick, of course, is still in “captivity”.
Nick and Schanke find The Camp, then send Danny back to the surface. The place is deserted, so it appears they got the message. Dragon shows up seconds later, increasingly frustrated that everyone’s gone. Nick and Schanke circle around to box him in.
Turns out not everyone left: one old woman is still there, and Dragon throws her a quarter to get her out of her hiding spot, then opens fire. Schanke moves in, and Dragon points the flamethrower at him, but Nick gets his attention. Dragon threatens Nick, but realizes he’ll get farther if he threatens the old woman he managed not to incinerate already. Nick drops his gun, and Dragon turns the flamethrower on him, but Nick uses super speed to knock Dragon out, disarm and handcuff him.
In the coda, Schanke’s talking to his daughter’s class about being a cop. They all just want to see the jail and start chanting it in the middle of the squad room. Captain Cohen comes in to rescue him by calling him a hero, and Schank takes them down to see the jail.
Nick and Nat have a conversation about her fear which is much less entertaining, and then it’s on to the end credits.
Next week: Actresses! Thinking they can be detectives too! And messing everything up! Oh, wacky hijinks!Show SGRoA Post List