Hello, Gates, Folk! Been awhile since we’ve visited the most predictable supernatural show on television! I hope everyone had a marvelous Labor Day that included very little actual labor and tipped everyone who was working heartily. Those in The Gates, as I’m sure you remember, were not headed to such a happy holiday weekend.
Andy, succubus extraordinaire, kissed Brett, almost turned him into a zombie, but he healed instantly and she was all better! Then she found an even better “cure” for her condition in Devil’s Weed, but when she ran to tell Charlie that there love was no longer forbidden/dangerous, she walked into a perfectly timed makeout session between him and Lexie! Now it’s a love quadrilateral! I don’t believe in the word “quadrangle.” Also, Christian vampire raped Claire, Dylan almost killed him, but not quite, because as we saw at the end of last episode, Christian lived on to kidnap little Emily! Dylan, ALWAYS stick around until you know the villain’s dead.
This is how people get hurt in sequels.
We open at the Radcliffe’s right where we left off. Dylan’s looked everywhere for Emily while Claire’s apparently sat in the girl’s room staring at the ring Christian left in on the bed. She’s too busy blaming herself to be of any real assistance. Dylan doesn’t exactly jump to her defense, but does mention that he should have killed Christian a little more completely. Agreed. His best advice is to keep searching, but since neither one of them know where else besides his apartment or favorite bar Christian could have taken their daughter, and in violation of so many vampire rules they’re unable to go their own kind, they decide to turn to Nick.
Cut to Nick sleeping (shirtless, of course) and Claire clamping a hand over his mouth to wake him. She and Dylan briefly explain the situation and beg for his help, and Nick, though frightened, hops out of bed. Sarah’s a pretty heavy sleeper, apparently, as she’s out for this whole exchange. I’m guessing, though, if Nick’s life keeps heading in this late-night, supernatural benefactor direction, Sarah’s not going to be in the dark for too long about her community.
The trio heads back to Emily’s bedroom, and Nick recommends issuing an amber alert and calling the FBI. Claire, reminding Nick once again that he’s dealing with VAMPIRES explains that if he does either of those things, they will fail and Christian will kill Emily. Nick sighs and asks if anything is missing from her room. When Claire affirms that Emily’s stuffed lion and several outfits are gone, he points out that that’s a good sign – kid’s probably still alive! He still doesn’t understand why an old friend of theirs would take their daughter, though. Because kids are extra tasty. Duh. Claire’s apparently tired of explaining why she’s an asshole, and just orders Dylan to start talking. Awesome. Dylan uncomfortably reveals that Christian “violated” his wife and was then unsuccessfully murdered by Dylan.
Successfully pissed off, but unsuccessfully murdered.
Cut to morning at the Monohan’s kitchen, in which Sarah is wearing that concerned expression which might as well have been stapled to her face for the past few episodes. Charlie asks what’s up and she asks if he saw his father leave that morning. Ooooh, Nick. You didn’t even leave a note? Send a text? Give a shit? Bad form. Charlie knows nothing, per usual, and Sarah comments that Nick’s not picking up his phone. Wanting desperately to think about something else besides her husband’s rampant inconsideration, she asks if Andy ever got in touch with Charlie the night before. Charlie, who has heretofore been calmly eating his breakfast pretty much chokes on it asking what his mom’s talking about. She explains all about Andy calling the night before, but not leaving a message. Charlie literally leaves a Charlie-shaped smoke pattern in the air as he sprints off to school at the possibility of Andy even butt-dialing him. But not before throwing an insensitive “Hell no!” her way when she offers to talk to him about girls. The concerned face reappears, and I think we’re supposed to realize from this scene that no one’s going to notice Sarah’s descent into tea-addiction until it’s way too late.
Mug of TEA!
At the police station, Leigh’s going through all of Christian’s possible (and Irish) aliases on the computer . There’s one hit nearby for a “Shane Healy,” and a picture comes up from about 20 years before. Leigh immediately recognizes Christian as some dude she saw walking around The Gates with Vanessa recently. He was going by Steve Saunders, and he was looking at properties. I guess Leigh was either totally eavesdropping or she and Vanessa had a serious heart-to-heart right after, because Leigh knows some details. The guy was from Lancaster, which is only about an hour away. Nick and Dylan make to go check it out, but when Claire tries to come with, Nick orders her to go home and wait by the phone, while the Menfolk go vamp huntin’. She’s understandably pissed at her lame assignment, but Nick explains that Christian could show up, or even just call, in which case, the police could get a trace. Mmmm, I don’t think so. Christian’s like, the best vampire on this show. I doubt he’d be felled by mistakes like staying on the phone too long or returning to the scene of the crime. Then again, this is “The Gates,” and the characters have the consistency of Lindsay Lohan’s sobriety, so who knows?!
Except for you Dylan. You consistently blow.
Back at school, Andy’s walking down the hall and this tornado comes up behind her and dematerializes into Charlie. He asks about her phone call the night before and she cops out saying she just wanted to ask about their English homework. Charlie buys that not at all, but before he can get more information, Lexie runs up to flirt with him and in general pee all over Phase One of the Charlie/Andy Reunification project. She asks if he’s still into knowing the name of her band (Experimental Necking, remember?). He tries to get her to leave, but she sticks around just long enough to make things really awkward, so Charlie abandons Phase One for another time, and exits. As soon as he’s out of earshot, Andy lays one helluva stinkeye on Lexie, and asks the other girl just what she’s up to with Charlie. Everyone knows that Lexie wants to do all sorts of doggy-style things to Brett, and Andy points out that she and Brett are just friends, so Lexie can stop using Charlie to make Andy jealous. Lexie intelligently asks what Andy and Brett are doing together if they’re not dating, and Andy throws back a gulpy “Hanging out?” before rushing away.
At the Radcliffe’s, Claire all alone staring a phone hating herself. It doesn’t last long, thank God. The doorbell rings, and it’s Sarah, who immediately knows something’s wrong. Claire invites her in and reveals that Emily’s been kidnapped, and she believes it to be her fault. Sarah’s horrified – at the incident, at Nick not telling her anything and at Claire’s utter insistence upon blaming herself.
Cut to a nondescript house, I assume in Lancaster, that Dylan and Nick are approaching stealthily. In broad daylight. Guns drawn. Yeesh. Nick asks where he should point the gun – head or heart? Dylan answers heart. It’s not that interesting, but that fact is relevant for later. As soon as they barge in, Dylan senses something isn’t right. I’ll say, there’s a dead family sitting in front of a television, and no Emily. Her stuffed lion, but no Emily. Curses! Dylan comments that the dead couple is probably the real Saunders family.
Probably. Sucks for them.
Nick’s cell rings almost immediately, and of course it’s Christian! The vampire smoothly asks, “Can I call you ‘Nick’?” Ooh, sexy. But I doubt Nick thinks so. Commercial!
Back to the now-ironic Saunders living room, Nick tries to calm down a pretty crazed Christian on the phone. Christian ignores the shit out of that directive and simply orders Nick out of the entire situation, lest the human be struck down. Nick counters, asking why Emily has to be involved if Christian’s so concerned about innocents being hurt, and her kidnapper coldly answers that she’s collateral damage. Because he’s distraught, and therefore a little dumber than usual, Dylan grabs the phone and demands Christian tell him where Emily is RIGHT NOW! Christian’s enjoying being in power again, so he calmly tells Dylan he’ll slit Emily’s little throat unless Nick is put back on the phone. Dylan obeys and Nick asks again about the missing girl’s whereabouts. Christian wonders why Nick doesn’t think she’s already dead, and the chief answers that if she were, she’s be propped up right there between the Saunders (gross). Nick thinks Christian wants something. Proving (at least to me) that Nick was onto something, Christian veers left and changes the subject. He asks if Nick really thinks the saintly Radcliffes deserve their daughter back and instructs him to ask them about St. Louis… Uh-oh… I think we’re about to find out how Claire and Dylan got into the adoption business, and I’ll bet it’s not pretty…
After Christian hangs up, Nick turns to Dylan for answers, but Dylan looks pretty blanked out as to what significance St. Louis could be. Lies or just general confusion?
No way to tell, really.
Meanwhile, at the Radcliffe’s, Sarah, because she lives her life out of context, tries to get Claire to calm down and doesn’t understand how Claire could take the entire blame for Emily’s kidnapping. Unable to tell her the whole truth, Claire simply explains that before Emily came into their lives, she and Dylan were selfish (bloodsucking) jerks. But once they became parents, they tried to change. Claire cries that she tried to be the perfect wife and mother, but she failed, and now Emily’s paying the price. Sarah soothes her just as Claire did her when they first met, and whispers that nobody’s perfect, and no woman can do it all. Dylan should have said this shit to Claire a long time ago. They probably wouldn’t be in this mess if he had.
Just as Claire’s wishing for another chance, the phone rings, and whoever’s on the other line tells her that Emily’s alive and Christian’s made contact. She and Sarah rush to the police station and…
…just to make me mad, we make a pitstop at school. Lexie, her true loyalties revealed, runs to Brett and reports that Andy’s up to something. See Lexie’s been manipulating both Andy and Charlie for a few days now, and the machinations resulted in Andy basically spilling that she isn’t over Charlie. Brett, as per usual, plugs his ears and starts singing “La la la la la la!” rather than listen to a bad word about his lady love. He does jump in long enough, though, to claim that Andy can’t still be under Charlie because Charlie can’t give her what he can! Lexie get this hilarious look on her face before she realizes that he isn’t talking about sex, and tries to find out exactly what Andy needs that Brett can supply. Aside from a little… puppy love? Sorry, couldn’t resist! Brett vaguely and douchily explains that Andy’s sick, and when they kiss, it makes her better.
That’s right, MAGIC kisses.
This throws Lexie for a serious “Jigga-whaaa?” and she asks if Andy’s a vampire. Nope! And succubi must be a more popular myth in “The Gates” universe, because they’re Lexie’s next guess. And then things get serious. She totally freaks out and warns Brett that he could totally – like TOTALLY – die at the hands of harmless looking Andy. But Brett is blinded by love to the point of needing a walking stick, and claims that she’s worth the risk.
Sarah and Claire arrive at the police station and as soon as she’s alone with her husband, Sarah rips into Nick for not telling her what was going on. She also asks why the hell he seems to be the only one working on this – no task force, no helicopters, no search party, no nothing. Nick just says that he’s the one who’s made contact, and tells her to go home so he can do his job.
Keep going, Nick. Push her right to the tea. You’re gonna regret this later.
He leaves Sarah standing in the waiting and goes into his office to question Claire and Dylan about St. Louis. Dylan looks a lot more clear-minded and guilty now than he did at the Saunders’. But it’s Claire who pipes up. She admits to meeting Emily’s parents, socializing with them (briefly), and murdering them… in St. Louis. Commercial.
We return to the station while Nick’s clarifying that he heard properly. Meet, socialize, murder? That’s correct. Flashback to eight years ago: Dylan, Christian and Claire are hanging out a strip club, all friendly-like. They’re on the prowl, out for bloooood. It’s all very sexy and evil, like vampires should be. About time! Dylan and Christian are happy enjoying the scenery, but Claire’s hungry right now. She spies a couple that looks tasty, but the boys complain they reek of amphetamines. But Claire can’t wait, so she goes alone while the boys promise to join her later, post strippers. This makes me even angrier at Dylan. He had a cool as fuck wife would do her own thing and while he ogled strippers, and he still treats her like shit.
In the present, Dylan pipes up that the couple was a perfect target, whatever that means. He did follow Claire about 20 minutes later, and found her at a decrepit (at least on the inside – the outside’s pretty nice for an addict’s residence) house, the couple dead inside. Dylan immediately senses something’s wrong, and hears a baby crying upstairs. He rushes up to find Claire cradling it – eating it? No, no she’s cradling. She’s wracked with guilt at seeing the baby. She and Dylan decide that as payment for their murderous years, they will raise the couple’s baby as their own. As an added bonus, they’ll get her out of her obviously shitty current family situation and into a nicer, wealthier… gatey-er lifestyle.
In the present, Dylan reminisces that Emily allowed Clare and him to feel human again. They moved to The Gates and started living better lives. Nick and his impeccable sense of right and wrong feel the need to point out that raising Emily doesn’t justify killing her parents. Claire answers that she knows. And she takes full responsibility. Once they get her daughter back, she vows to submit herself to Nick and whatever punishment he sees fit. Dylan looks on and is proud to have finally broken his wife’s will.
NOW you’re good enough!
Leigh walks in just then, with the news that she’s traced the phone Christian used to call Nick and it was purchased in The Gates! He’s calling from inside The Gates!! We cut immediately to Nick, Dylan, Claire and Vanessa in front of a house that she says Christian wanted to see several times. Apparently she knew that Christian was a vampire, but since he didn’t end up buying a house, she didn’t feel the need to do a full background check on him. Way to go, Vanessa. You are so no match for Devon.
The trio enters cautiously, and of course, Christian’s there!! He and Dylan go at it, then Mama Claire joins in and it looks like Christian’s about to meet the true death when Nick gets Dylan to pull her off. Christian needs to remember three very important life rules: Don’t fuck with people’s food. Don’t fuck with people’s money. Don’t fuck with people’s kids. You can avoid a lot of trouble following just those three. Nick points his gun right at Christian’s heart and Christian takes that opportunity to spit that where he’s taken Emily, they’ll never get her back.
Scientology school. Eat it!
Back from commercial, Christian’s chained to a chair, quipping his way into a few punches from Dylan and Claire. Nick calms them both down, and Christian remains a dick until the end of the scene.
At school, Charlie catches up with Lexie, and wants to talk. She correctly guesses after their conversation with Andy that Charlie’s not over her. Lexie’s pretty cool about the whole thing, but she does warn him about Andy. And when I say “warn,” I mean “tell her almost everything about Andy, including that it was her kisses that made him sick.” Damn, Lexie. Control yourself. I feel like that information could have been used in a more productive way. Charlie bought the same pair of earplugs that Brett did, apparently and doesn’t listen to Lexie, calling her a liar and running off. Bad day for Lexie, all around.
In what could have been Christian’s happy home, he’s still tied to a chair with Nick questioning him. Apparently Emily’s alive and equipped with food and water. Whew, I was worried. He snidely asks Dylan for some whiskey (what they were drinking the night Emily’s parents were killed), and Dylan punches him in the gut. Boooooring. Christian moralizes with Nick over his captivity, asking why he thinks the Radcliffes are worthy of protection. Did Nick know Claire’s been out hunting again?
It’s onto Dylan as Christian asks if the vampire can honestly say he’s never killed anyone in the past eight years. Nick and Dylan share an awesomely sheepish look over the murder of Amanda, and Christian, missing nothing, starts laughing his head off at all the hypocrisy. He cries that they’re all the same, and Claire refuses to admit that. All of a sudden, Christian’s ready to start negotiating – in his own nefarious way. If Dylan kills Nick, he’ll reveal Emily’s whereabouts. And Dylan looks like he’s about to do just that as we cut to commercial.
And we’re back! Treated to Dylan making High-LAR-ious half hissing, half choking sounds as he makes to kill Nick. But then he cops out and just punches Christian some more. They scream at each other a bit and Dylan actually has the stones to call out Christian for destroying their friendship. Christian points out the very obvious fact that Dylan tried to kill him, like, a week ago, and calls them both monsters and killers. Nick chimes in agreeing with Christian for a change. For as much as they try to hide it, the vampires are killers, and for split second, Dylan considered killing the chief. Nick’s sick of being snuck up on with surprise information (like “Hey! There are vampires!” and “Hey! There are werewolves!” and “Hey! You are their champion!”), so now he wants to know the truth. All of it, he says pointedly to the vampires. I guess he wants to know how many people Dylan’s killed, because that’s all the detail we get before commercial.
Just Dylan, Dylan and me together, this century…? I’m gonna need some search filters.
In other news, it’s the day for confrontation at Gates High as Charlie confronts Andy about Lexie’s allegations. True to form, Andy literally turns tail and runs away… to Brett! Whom SHE confronts about his spilling the beans to Lexie about her condition. Brett’s apologetic, but doesn’t know why Andy cares – doesn’t he provide everything she could possibly need? Brett’s the one who’s there for her, for goodness sake. Andy cries that she needed a friend, and Brett fucked that all to hell by spilling her secrets. She runs away leaving him at school, and he calls after her that Charlie will never accept her for who she is, all the while the wolfrage builds inside. And the quadrilateral starts it’s long, painful demise…
But, if that’s getting too serious for you, don’t worry. Back at the house, Christian’s ticking off murders like he’s going through Dylan’s magic numbers. It’s awesome. He’s all, “There were those two in Jamaica, six or so in Miami, then there was this WHOLE tour of the south where we left a trail of rednecks in our wake from Mobile to Lexington. Good times!” The best part is Nick’s actually starting to get bored at this point.
This is like the most boring horror movie ever.
Dylan tries to defend himself by complaining he and Claire were just trying to survive, and Christian wails that his friend has never accepted the true nature of vampire, while Christian has. He’s accepted it so much that he even attends the funerals of his victims to make sure he’s fully aware of what he’s done and the pain he’s caused. Claire and Dylan are just as sickened by this obvious breach of vampire protocol as I am. She asks why they’re even still listening to this prattle, and Nick says it’s because they could find a clue to Emily’s whereabouts. Hope he finds it soon. Christian doesn’t understand why Nick is risking his life to give Emily back to two vampires, when she’s probably better off where she is. Which, Nick guesses, is with her relatives! Ding ding ding!! He babble something about how Christian seems obviously fixated on the families of his victims, so that’s what lead him to the conclusion, but I don’t really care. I’m just glad the Vampire Ethics portion of our program is over.
Chief Monohan springs into action and orders a missing persons report on all infants that went missing in the St. Louis area the year Emily was born, and the trio is on their way. I’m sticking to my theory that this show is set somewhere in Illinois, because they arrive at a house in St. Louis very, very quickly. It’s the same house where Dylan and Claire found Emily eight years ago, and Claire barges in NO INVITATION NECESSARY.
Dear Show, Consistency, please.
She flashes back for a split second to the house when it was a crack den, in stark contrast to how nice it is now. She rushes upstairs and there’s Emily, all dressed up still, and safe and sound. She and Claire share one brief moment of bliss before a blond woman comes in demanding Claire unhand her niece! Oh crap. Christian really did screw the pooch for everyone. Nice work, Man.
See, now it doesn’t matter than Claire and Dylan are all Emily knows. It matters that they kidnapped her after murdering her parents, and the only way to keep her now is to do more killing. Or more lying. Damn, Christian is good. He did put her in a place where they would never get her back.
Flash a little forward to everyone sitting over some tense coffee. Emily, nee Piper’s Aunt Nancy says that Lindsay, Emily’s birthmother inherited the house from their parents. When Lindsay died and Piper went missing, Nancy and her husband moved in and stayed. Hmm, kind of morbid, but okay. Also, Lindsay was a giant fuckup, and while everyone thought that she might clean up her life when Emiliper was born, of course she didn’t. Then she died and Emily was raised in luxury.
Right, Sweetie, that was your mommy before she was all strung out on uppers.
Nancy’s a little pissed that Claire and Dylan managed to go through a closed adoption without anyone notifying Lindsay’s relatives. Claire and Dylan cover as best they can, but of course the conversation devolves into a, “She’s ours!” “No, she’s OURS” situation until Nick’s forced to break it up. He clarifies that the Radcliffes do have the most legal rights to Emiliper, and Claire jumps in once she’s done gripping the table hard enough to make it crack, to make sure she threatens Nancy and her husband so they don’t try anything. Jeez, Claire, calm down and say then can visit or something. It’s a tense departure, with Nancy gifting Emiliper with an album of birthfamily photos, Claire gifting Nancy with many glares. Way to open a can of worms, Christian. Excellent villainy!
At the Monohan’s, Andy’s finally ready to talk to Charlie, but it’s too late. He’s been dicked around too much by this girl, and when she tries to explain what she is, he freaks out and does exactly what Brett said he would. He’s not exactly rejecting her because she’s different, it’s more because she’s acted super crazy toward him up til then, and now she’s capping it all off with what would look to him a lot like very real mental instability. She tearfully whispers, “I’m still me…”, but Charlie stalks away, leaving her crushed.
In case you were worried about him or wondered what he was up to, Brett leaves the house to go run, sheds his clothes and embraces the wolfrage. I guess that was significant because that’s the last we see of Brett for the rest of the episode.
I mean, I had a pretty good idea he was upset…
Finally, after spending the whole day saving it, Nick comes back to the station to a pissed. Off. Sarah. She wants to know details and why he didn’t tell her. He gets really evasive and something clicks in Sarah. She’s seen that look on him before. She thought once they started their new life in The Gates, she wouldn’t have to see it anymore. I guess it’s the Look of Hidden Secrets or something and it is not welcome in Sarah’s gaze. She stalks out and Nick looks defeated. Oh just fucking tell her, Nick. Tell her about the vampires, the werewolves and all the crazy shit that goes on in her neighborhood. She’s like, the only one who doesn’t know at this point, and it’s getting tough to watch.
At the Radcliffe home, things are finally at some sort of peace. Claire and Dylan put Emily to bed, and she asks if her real mother loved her. Claire promises that yes, she did. Emiliper heads off to dreamland. The couple heads downstairs and Claire rues the fact that the relationship with Em’s birthfamiliy will never end. It was exactly what Christian wanted, in the end. Dylan, newly in love with his wife, softly tells her that everything will be all right. He cups her cheek, and for a moment, he’s right.
Don’t screw it up, again, Darling.
And if you, like me, were wondering where Christian’s been all this time, we head to a road outside The Gates, and Leigh drops him off in a squad car. He asked who wanted his release – she snots, “Who didn’t?” and asks him never to come back. As she drives away, Christian turns and sees a figure come through the woods. It’s Claire. They share a final few words before she STAKES THE SHIT OUT OF HIM! AWESOME!! Get it, Girl! Before he breathes his last breath, Claire asks why he did it. He answers, “For love,” and I think, “To be alone.” She stakes him some more and finally, he dies. For real this time.
But not without leaving a trail of destruction in your wake a mile long. Dear Show, Not bad.