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Grimm Review: Where in the World is El Cucuy?

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Justice comes in many different forms. For Grimm Season 3 Episode 5 justice is best served by El Cucuy, a nomadic, old lady roaming the world listening to the pleas of the disenfranchised. Serving out justice by brutally slashing some throats.

So it’s not quite the DC or Marvel origin story, but it’s not lacking in flair.

A Legend Returns

This installment really boils down to the long awaited “Juliette knows about Wesen now so she needs to be useful” that every non-Wesen character seems to get shortly after learning the truth about Nick and his world.

As much as I’ve harped on Juliette over the course of the series, watching her working so hard to help Nick, and being completely as ease with his world is endearing. She’s got a lot of work to do to catch up with Hank, Monroe, and Rosalee, so at least she’s willing to jump right in.

Were there times she was overly enthusiastic? Of course, she was beaming with enthusiasm while reading about one of Nick’s Grimm ancestor’s killing an entire village, but she’s doing good work in other areas. She’s playing a pretty hard game of where in the world is Mama Grimm (let’s hope she doesn’t need to run around a map of Europe in 45 seconds lighting beacons).

Getting back to the case, I like Grimm’s style in telling this case. It easily adapts it to use within the Wesen world, but it doesn’t chain itself down in keeping every procedural trope satisfied. El Cucuy was never arrested, and she’s free to continue her throat slashing justice. In a world that requires suspending of disbelief, having Nick and Hank be able to arrest her would have been the biggest suspension of the night.

For a moment, it was looking like Monroe and Rosalee weren’t even going to be featured as they live out domestic bliss together. Rosalee answering a call from Monroe’s mother only serves to delay both of them in telling their parents about the relationship. Monroe and Rosalee are already breaking the status quo by helping a Grimm, so there’s probably an unspoken rule that asks them not to date outside their Wesen kind.

Adalind’s adventures in Vienna continue, and so does Renard’s spy. Her ultrasound of the baby, and its two heartbeats is…different. As far as the obstetrician can tell she’s not having twins, so this heartbeat likely confirms the baby is not of the human variety. It’s probably safe to say that Renard is the father at this point. However, does this development explain his sudden downturn in emotion after talking to his spy on the phone, or is he thinking of something else?

A Few More Thoughts:

  • Nick, Juliette, Hank, Rosalee and Monroe’s shoptalk over dinner is the nuttiest thing I have ever seen, but the scene has a certain charm and lightness to it. Enjoying food and wine while talking about the nuances of how a Blutbad murders in comparison to other “jerkwad” Wesens.
  • If I were Juliette, I would not be laying on the trailers floor. There are far too many objects that could literally stab me in the back.
  • Has there ever been a case of intermingling between Wesen species in the series? I’m currently drawing a blank.

Review

Editor Rating: 3.9 / 5.0
  • 3.9 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0 (35 Votes)

Nick McHatton is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.

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"As a child of Hispanic decent, I was no stranger to tales of el Cucuy coming and terrorizing bad little children who did not obey their mothers and fathers. It was a nice twist to see el Cucuy as more of a protector of the innocent rather than the bogeyman she's made out to be." I do not see this as much of a twist on the role. El Cucuy is still acting as a boogyman. It/She is just targeting those who are attacking innocents as opposed to going after disrespectful children. I loved her final comment warning off Hank and Nick. She was reminding them that she would be forced to deal with them if they tried to hold her. I loved her playing innocent as well as the grin on her face just before she went after the mugger/purse-snatcher. If you have a job/role why not enjoy it?

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Regarding intermingling between Wesen species, the only certain example we have is Pierce in 'The Other Side', a product of deliberate genetic manipulation. There's also the child of Harmony with Reverend Calvin, but it might actually be her boyfriend's after all, hence pure Seelengut. Two species - Ziegevolk and Naiads - apparently need to breed with humans, but the offspring must be genetically full Wesen or those species would have been diluted out of existence many generations back. Renard is our only example of a definitely mixed-species individual who has to the best of our knowledge been created the old-fashioned way. (And I reckon he's half-human, possibly half-Grimm, as Zauberbiest is the only Wesen we see when he puts his face on.) This is interesting given that mixed-species relationships, while slightly taboo, appear far from uncommon. (Rosalee/Monroe, 'Danse Macabre', 'Of Mouse and Man', 'Three Coins in a Fuchsbau', 'The Thing With Feathers', 'Happily Ever Aftermath', 'The Good Shepherd', 'One Angry Fuchsbau', 'Kiss of the Muse', 'A Dish Best Served Cold' - whew!) With all this going on, it seems strange that we're not seeing more cross-breeds; I'm going on the theory that mixed couples tend to have fertility problems.

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Interspecies: "The Thing With Feathers" didn't quite confirm if the bird creature and her companion were a couple (albeit an abusive one) or simply captive/captor.

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Interspecies: "The Thing With Feathers" didn't quite confirm if the bird creature and her companion were a couple (albeit an abusive one) or simply captive/captor.

Fortyseven

Boring procedural.

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Juliette bugs me so much. How dare you think Nick was cheating on you after you spent months being a B to him and running after Renard! Nick ever the good guy did not bring this up. Shows like to kill of characters now I vote for Juliette! I think the baby having two heartbeats has something to do with Adalind getting her powers back. I think the baby is Eric's because he was human and she was human at the time. I hope it is not Renard's baby. Renard knows Adi was sleeping with him and his brother so there is a chance the baby is his or his nephew? Did they say what the sex of the baby was? They keep saying who will take over the Royal family isn't King Renard still alive? Why isn't he in charge? It will hit the fan when Adi shows back in Portland claiming Renard is the baby's father. This will not go well with Nick and Hank! My girl Adi will use this baby for all it is worth. I still think Stephania is Renard's mom. She wants the baby for power too. Once again Monroe and Rosealee are so cute!

Joyeful

Favourite case ever. I have never laughed so hard at the resolution of a case. I didn't see it coming at all that it was the old lady, and her interrogation (followed by Renard's incredulity) was just hilarious. When the guy snatched her purse at the end I just couldn't stop laughing. I loved it. Go Grandma! Good on Grimm for shaking up the normal procedures - discussing Wesen over dinner instead of the spice shop (hilarious), taking Juliette to the trailer instead of Hank/Nick, and actually not knowing whether the killer was Wesen or not until the very end. I agree that Juliette's enthusiasm is a little over the top (especially in the trailer), but I'm glad she's useful. She also gave me a few laughs, especially with, "who is M and why does she love you?" You think it's safe to say the baby is Renard's? I'm still not sold on that. I think it's gonna be Eric's, but because Renard's the better man, he'll probably end up raising the kid to protect him from the royal family. I do wish that part of the story would speed up though. P.S. Love the Carmen Sandiego references :-)

Marissa

Good episode. The gang sitting around eating dinner passing around pictures of people throats ripped out and saying oh it's not this because this would have happened also. It's so weird that it's completely normal for them to do that. I never thought of the old woman being El Cucuy I suspected it was the marine. I don't know why but I couldn't help but laugh when they had to let the lady go because they couldn't prove she slashed guys throats. I don't remember where but I am sure I have heard of El Cucuy before and it's going to bother me until I remember.

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I'm also from a hispanic background, and actually grew up hearing that small song at the very beginning. I was actually suspicious of Mrs. Garcia from the start, something was odd about her like if she wasn't really the age she was supposed to be. And also because she shares the same last name as me, Garcia, but not all of us are monsters as far as I know LOL. About the whole inter species thing. I remember an episode were a blutbod priest had a relationship and impregnated a sheep like wesen. Were not given any information about this unborn baby except that it was a girl, so its hybrid status is in question (although a wolf/sheep wesen hybrid sound interesting). And although not technically a relationship the vamp spider lady wesen flirted and probably slept with at least a sizable number of males from different species, even if was only to drain and mummify them.

Dreamrose

@Nick McHatton - This is not the first time we've seen a cross-Wesen relationship; In "The Thing With Feathers" in season 1, we met a Seltenvogel who was married to a Klaustreich. However, we've never (knowingly) seen the offspring of two different Wesen, only Wesen/human (Renard, the Naiads). We have met someone with two different woges (Genio innocuo/Lowen), but that was due to genetic manipulation in utero.

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@ Dreamrose

@Dreamrose I don't know that I would call Renard half human.. we haven't yet determined if Royals are some kind of Wesen as well. He is half Hexenbeist, as Eric loved to point out. As far as other couples intermingling.. let's not forget the fact that Aunt Marie was at one point romantically involved and engaged to Farley Kolt, who was a Steinadler. That must have made things a bit awkward seeing as though she was a Grimm. As far as this episode with el Cucuy, I have to admit I really enjoyed the way it was handled. As a child of Hispanic decent, I was no stranger to tales of el Cucuy coming and terrorizing bad little children who did not obey their mothers and fathers. It was a nice twist to see el Cucuy as more of a protector of the innocent rather than the bogeyman she's made out to be. And the fact that it was a 77 year old woman? I was in hysterics! Especially when Hank and Nick said they couldn't let her go and she responded, "I don't really see that you have a choice." Seeing them both back cautiously away from the table, and then Renard even being in disbelief was great. Kudos to the Grimm writers for their clever way of handling an old childhood ghost story.

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