Grimm Season 4 Episode 13 Review: Trial by Fire

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Talk about burying the lede!

We had to wait until the last five minutes of Grimm Season 4 Episode 13 for the long-awaited Adalind/Juliette showdown, but it was worth it. We were also treated to a nice bit of continuity with the return of Daniel Roebuck as the (jailed) Bauerschwein arson investigator Peter Orson, last seen back in Grimm Season 1 Episode 6.

Really, though, it was all about the look on Adalind's face before she ran away in terror from Juliette and her awesome new powers.

Oh, if only Adalind's mother could see her now. Catherine Schade would be so disappointed in her daughter and wonder where she went wrong, because Adalind once again demonstrated how utterly clueless she was. "Amateur," indeed!

Surprise, Adalind, your little magic spell to take away Nick's powers has backfired. Big time. And it looked like Prince Viktor wasn't all that impressed with Adalind's current behavior, either, to judge by this zinger:

Adalind: We need to get to Juliette.
Viktor: Not just yet.
Adalind: Then what are we doing?!
Viktor: It's called "back-channel diplomacy," and it cannot be done truly effectively when done so loudly.

The cast and crew did a great job with Adalind and Juliette's knock-down, drag-out fight: that looked downright brutal! Actresses Claire Coffee and Bitsie Tulloch spoke with TV Fanatic staff recently, giving some interesting insight into filming this scene.

(The effects here were certainly better than that horribly done burning car after the Excandesco torched the lawyer. That was almost painful to watch.)

Juliette also finally revealed her transformation to Nick. He was understandably shocked by the revelation. There was a rather heavy-handed bit of dialogue between them earlier in the episode, no doubt intended to ratchet up the tension:

Juliette: So what happens when Adalind finds out you're a Grimm again?
Nick: One less Hexenbiest wouldn't be a bad thing, would it?
Juliette: No, I guess not.

I know that Nick has had his problems with Hexenbiests in the past, especially those with the last name of Schade, but he doesn't really seem to have the same problem with Renard. Maybe Nick just thinks of Renard more in terms of his paternal Royal side than his mother's Hexenbiest contribution, which, in my opinion, would be a big mistake.

And, speaking of Renard's mother, Elizabeth did indeed help Nick get his powers back. So maybe Nick should cool it with the anit-Hexen sentiment and stick to the anti-Adalind sentiment.

Adalind Hexed Out - Grimm Season 4 Episode 13

Moving on to what was actually the A-storyline of the episode, I was pleased that the writers didn't take the obvious route despite several opportunities (though it was awfully convient that the Excandesco ended up dead and they didn't have to worry about jailing him).

Orson never tried to escape and apparently meant well the whole time. He and Monroe agreed to never forgive each the various offenses previously committed, and shook on it. But, perhaps most importantly, Orson didn't die heroically. I was fairly well convinced that his bacon would be crisped at the hands of the Excandesco, but instead he lived to go back to his nice comfy jail cell and get a pat on the back from Nick and Hank. Weird. Gratifying, but weird.

On a side note, the Grimm lore for the Excandesco referenced the famous Great Fire of Rome in 64 A.D. during the reign of Emperor Nero. According to some legends, Nero sat back and played music while the city burned. Some people even believe that Nero himself may have lit the city on fire, though this isn't actually very likely, given that parts of his own palace roasted in the blaze.

Back on point. Orson was understandably surprised when he was sitting in Renard's office and Nick started talking openly about Wesen in front of Hank and Renard:

Hank: You're a Bauerschwein. Nick's a Grimm. Yeah, we know.
Peter Orson: Wow. I've been away too long.

It really emphasized the point that what Nick and company have there in Portland is very, very unusual. The Awesome Posse is most definitely the exception, not the norm. Despite that, they're making it work, and a lot of that is thank to the unifying force that Nick provides as a Grimm whose attitudes and behaviors are heavily informed by his "normal" life.

To use a Harry Potter analogy, the fact that Nick grew up as a "Muggle" rather than a "wizard" made a world of difference. Of course, it meant a huge amount of stumbling in the dark early on, as Nick's brief flashbacks pointed out! Overall, though, the lack of preconceptions about a lot of things allowed Nick to approach the Wesen world with a much more open mind than any other Grimm.

So, what do you think, Grimmsters? Was the confrontation between Juliette and Adalind worth the wait? How do you think Nick will react to his sudden revelation? Did you enjoy the Excandesco ("case-of-the-week") storyline? Let us know in the comments below!

If you want to relive all the excitement leading up to this episode, be sure to watch Grimm online right here at TV Fanatic!

Unfortunately, we're in for a bit of a break before the next episode: Grimm Season 4 Episode 14, "Bad Luck," will air March 20 and move to a new time at 8/7c, filling the time slot formerly occupied by Constantine.

Trial by Fire Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.9 / 5.0 (34 Votes)
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Grimm Season 4 Episode 13 Quotes

Juliette: So what happens when Adalind finds out you're a Grimm again?
Nick: One less Hexenbiest wouldn't be a bad thing, would it?
Juliette: No, I guess not.

Hank: You're a Bauerschwein. Nick's a Grimm. Yeah, we know.
Peter Orson: Wow. I've been away too long.