The Strain – “Last Rites”

It’s easy to forget that the entire mess in New York has been caused because of one man, Eldritch Palmer. A man who has been bedridden and ultimately inert the entire season. Yes, he’s been pulling strings, but you don’t fee much of an impact from him or threatened by him. He’s unimportant and whether he lives or die doesn’t feel like a big deal and Eichorst confirmed that nothing Palmer says or does will force the Master to do anything in Palmer’s favor. Thus even when Eldritch seemingly gets what he wants, you don’t really care.

The Strain - "Last Rites"Dutch has been largely unimportant. She bitched and she messed things up, and she was never apologetic. Sure, she felt bad about being part of the reason that the situation was perpetuated, but she never truly felt sorry. In fact she was proud of what she was capable of. Thus when she strolled in with her plan to use the Emergency Broadcast System it was brilliant. Sure, it also meant that those in NYC who would benefit from Eph and Nora making an announcement would actually need to be watching TV or listening to the radio. It would however let the rest of the country know that things were getting bad.

Before the broadcast is even finished a group of vampires are sent in to attack Setrakian at his home. It was the first time we had seen Gabriel in quite a while. He still looked awful, but seemed to have got a wig. The fact that he made his way into Setrakian’s home is the scariest pat confirming that it wasn’t quite as safe as they thought. Especially when more of them slowly made their way in and Nora’s mother was attacked. Forced into the basement they had little time before they needed to flee as Eichorst’s vampires forced their way in. It forced Nora to grow finally, accepting that one couldn’t come back. It took nearly all season, but Nora finally seems to be there.

The Strain - "Last Rites"More importantly we finally saw the return of the vampire killing league. I don’t know much as to who they are still , but they stormed in and took Gus, eliminating all the pursuing vampires.

Despite this being the penultimate episode, the episode moved at a rather leisurely pace. Characters meandered about with no sense of urgency. For the characters, nothing special was really happening. the characters were reacting to what is given to them in the situation. Nothing was given to them so their were a number of talking moments. Character moments that didn’t much develop anything new. Instead, character beats and traits and things we already knew were reinforced. The slow build didn’t result in a gripping story, but something more measures and less exciting. There was no built in drama, creating a situation that the characters would need to deal with in the finale. The episode felt wasted with little forward progress.

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