‘Dracula’ Recap: From Darkness to Light
The episode opens on someone other than Dracula today. It appears that the onslaught of vampires that Lady Jayne was worried about coming has arrived. We see three vampires in a train car with what appears to be drunk woman, though we do not see the woman who is all wrapped up, we just hear noises that imply feebleness.
Then one vamp gives the telltale flashing of teeth signal and they attempt to get their drunk prey. Only their prey isn’t drunk, it’s actually Lady Jayne in disguise! Surprise surprise! Now I know reading something versus hearing something makes it hard to figure out tone so I am just going tell you it’s sarcasm. I would hate for anyone reading this to fall into a sarchasm – I hear it hurts – so I am just going come out and admit I was being sarcastic. The scene is a common trope though I do enjoy the fact that it allows us to see Lady Jayne in action again, albeit in another leather get-up. She dispatches two of the vampires but the last one, a rather scraggly looking one, manages to escape.
She takes the bodies to the Order secret layer where we see the desiccated vampire bodies on an autopsy table. Apparently there is a science to their bodies and Lady Jayne can give a rough age for each of her kills. She does note to Browning who is present that her kills are not old enough to have been the one to kill her seers though she thinks the one that got away might be the one. Browning and her give off this weird chemistry vibe that hopefully might get explored later. I quite like the actor who plays Browning and he is not been given a lot to work with here.
Anyhoo, over at Dracula’s mansion Lady Jayne is the topic of choice between Renfield and Dracula. For some reason that escapes me Dracula is having this conversation while sprawled out on the floor near his fireplace. Renfield just hands him the decanter of Scotch, no need to gasses where Dracula is concerned. Renfield being a saner, more civilized man, oh I get it now, foreshadowing for later, takes the seat that is available and uses a glass to drink his Scotch. It also provides a rather interesting visual juxtaposition with Renfield physically higher than his employer.
Dracula explains that he plans on gaining Lady Jayne’s most valuable prize, and surprise, surprise, it’s not love, it’s trust. He tells Renfield to make a reservation for two at the Savoy for seats in the center where everyone could see. They depart from their respective spaces, Renfield is off to do his master’s bidding while Dracula goes to his balcony to drink straight from the decanter. And then the scraggly looking vampire appears behind him and we learn that he is Dracula’s liege. Dracula has called him to help in his plans to take out the Order. He explains business aspect of his plans but this guy is more hotheaded than Dracula and wants to kill Lady Jayne for killing his progeny immediately. He finds this business method cowardly. Renfield does not like him much either. It was at this point I totally called what Dracula’s plan was but as to not spoil everyone reading I shall refrain from sharing. I will do my “I knew it” dance while the opening title sequence plays.
You know who’s day is good for once, Harker’s. I know amazing right. Dracula has offered his abode to Mina and Harker as the location for their engagement party. Lucy covers her disappointment with the engagement with extreme engagement planning; I think her plan is to bankrupt Harker with this party so that he cannot have Mina because some of her suggestions sound ridiculously extravagant. Mina manages to separate the lovebirds with barely restrained anger which is when Dracula does his part and sends Harker on a mission to find more about a general pushing for war with the Ottoman Empire. Dracula believes the main general is a puppet and that the second-in-command is under the Order’s thumb, essentially a war profiteer.
With Harker out of the way Dracula manages to finagle alone time with Mina. But first he has to lose Lucy and lose Lucy he does. Dracula’s engineer comes up the threesome walking through house and informs him that they are ready for a test run. Mina would love to stay for it and Dracula all but pushes Lucy out of the house when she tries to get Mina to leave instead. And then there were two. Not really though since the lab is filled with people. I quite like the lab design.
Everything starts off well enough but then things start malfunctioning and the show gets a little too heavy handed with its romantic imagery. Dracula shields Mina from the chaos ensuing in slow motion in what looks more like a feel-up session and the score increases bombastically. I do not like it. Anyway, no one is hurt in the end and Dracula tries to play it off like it’s all good. Can’t let her see you sweat and all that jazz. Ugh men and their egos.
Later his vampire buddy Josef, who had managed to get a glimpse of Mina, mentions how much she looks like Ilona. Dracula replies with his stern voice and tells Josef never to mention the resemblance between the two women again. Josef is clearly befuddled by Dracula weirdness when it comes to Mina and Renfield is in the background helping Josef getting dressed giving side-eyes all around. Dracula’s night is not through though, turns out the seats at the Savoy were arranged so that he could stand Lady Jayne up, making her look the fool. Looks like someone has been reading the pick-up artist handbooks. He watches gleefully as she waits for him to show.
The following day we deal with more men and their egos; Harker comes home – by home I mean the place he got as a bonus from Dracula, not the hovel he used to live in – from information gathering to find Mina waiting for him. It would appear the feel-up session was a bit much for her and she is not too keen on Dracula’s involvement in hers and Harker’s relationship. Harker – being the big dolt that he is – is not cottoning on to the fact that this is his girlfriend actually telling him that she needs space between herself and Dracula and makes it about himself. He also tells Mina that Dracula was the one to open his eyes to the whole person Mina is. He deserves to have his girlfriend stolen, he’s clearly just helping Dracula get the girl. I mean for a guy who is supposed to be inquisitive, he sure is slow on the uptake. He is lovely to look at though.
After seeing Harker Mina heads to Van Helsing’s office to start her time as his assistant. He starts her off with slides and stuff which she is not a fan of. Van Helsing has little time to teach her why fundamentals are important though since he is on his way out to see Dracula. He has managed to make a serum that works but only at the injection site. Without a heart to circulate the serum through Dracula’s system it would be impossible to have his whole body fully be in the sun.
Another scene that was probably not supposed to make me laugh but Josef is like the village/country character that you see who hates all things in the city. He is all what is this witchcraft and Helsing is side-eyeing him while telling him it is called science. So much side-eye this episode. Dracula’s upset, yet again, over his inability to walk in the sun like a real man. Renfield would probably be side-eyeing his behavior if Josef wasn’t so clearly a problem he is itching to fix.
Back to Mina, who has changed her outfit, sorry, that was random. This show’s timeline makes no sense sometimes and all I have to go on is outfits. So apparently this is a completely different day, possibly the next day. Anyhoo she decides to poke her head around Helsing’s things and finds a secret room with lots of weird things clearly connected to Helsing’s Dracula research. She then finds a slide that has live cells on it despite it being dated 9 years ago. She is telling all this to Lucy who is not paying attention to her and is miffed that Mina missed some meeting with her.
The two try to talk it out but they are having two different conversations. Mina is trying to comfort her friend while promising that marriage won’t end their friendship while Lucy is saying goodbye to her impossible love.
Back to Dracula who makes a trek to see Lady Jayne asking to make amends for leaving her looking silly in the Savoy previously. What is his amends, it’s a female mud wrestling fight, but legit fighting, none of that silly let’s just throw mud at each other. This gets Lady Jayne all hot and bothered they have rough sex intercut with scenes from the fight. Yay sex. But things are not going well for Dracula everywhere. Back at home Renfield shows him the remains of their cook that Josef has eaten up. Then Renfield tells a dark humor funny. I love Renfield.
Switching gears, time to check in our baddies. Davenport has passed his son’s death off as a heart attack and is starting on his personal vendetta against Grayson. He tells Browning that he will handle their American problem without the hint of the anger he has boiling within him. No time to linger on this though since they have guests. Dracula was indeed correct and the two Generals that he had Harker investigate walk into the Order’s chambers. But only one walks out when Browning does not get the answer he likes from one of the Generals and has his manservant slit his throat. This encourages the one to walk out, General Shaw, to make sure the Order’s commands are completed.
Now back to Davenport who meets with a woman who is a freelance something, something nefarious, who usually works for the Order but Davenport wants her help finding out what Grayson cares about most and then having her destroy it. She’s a little terrifying, she says everything so mater of fact, like no big, I destroy things all the time, just how I roll. Dracula may need to start watching his back.
Speak of the devil he’s having another confab with Renfield. So much Renfield and Dracula this week, be still my heart. Renfield is there to deliver a letter from Lady Jayne asking for Dracula’s presence later in the evening, as well as give unsolicited advice. Renfield decides to make his issues with Yosef clear. He thinks that he is not to be trusted in that he knows so much about Dracula’s past. He doesn’t question Yosef’s loyalty but a man breaks at a certain point. (So much foreshadowing).
Dracula heads to Lady Jayne’s later that evening where she has called him to dismiss him. He tries to get her to reconsider, playing at her ego, but she’s not having it. She even has his replacement come in before he leaves. Dracula returns home to a pissed off Josef who thinks Dracula is pathetic and that they should just rip apart Lady Jayne. Dracula tries to reason with him but to no avail. Eventually, with tears in his eyes, he agrees to have Josef go take her out.
Don’t be fooled though, those tears are not for Lady Jayne but Josef instead and even then probably crocodile tears. It’s a double cross – this is the thing I called from earlier – he attacks Josef the minute he arrives in Lady Jayne’s chambers. The look of sadness in Josef’s eyes when he realizes who is attacker is. Lady Jayne awakens just in time to slice off his head. He awakens to a grateful Lady Jayne who pretends the man ran away who now trusts him completely. They take a bath together to celebrate.
After celebrating together in the bath they hold their personal celebration at their homes with their halves, Lady Jayne with Browning while Dracula is with Renfield. First Lady Jayne thinks that this the vampire they have been looking for since he is old enough. Browning is rather doting when he says that she should not have lured the vampire to her home – I guess she changed the story around – but she is all bravado. She seems quite pleased that he is proud of her. Dracula has his victory but it is sobered by the fact he lost Josef, which Renfield is surprised by and he looks kind of unhappy that Dracula is upset to see Josef go. I think he might be jealous of the bromance. Best part is Dracula pouring some out for the homie in the fireplace.
Harker had an interesting night as well. He has been chasing information about General Shaw which lead him to a shady night time meeting with a man who give him a name and an address for a price,. He finds the person mentioned but that we get though I’m sure there’s more. I guess General Shaw is sticking around for a bit.
Show’s not over yet though folks, the following day Renfield is on his way to do Dracula’s bidding when he sees a woman struggling with a stroller. He attempts to help her but she is just a decoy and a group of men clobber him and take him away. Lo and behold his captor is Davenport who bringing Renfield to a meeting with the creepy woman from earlier. And the foreshadowing pays off.
So not my favorite episode this season, it kind of dragged for me. The increased presence of Renfield was a nice change though. The foreshadowing was clever, Josef was essentially being used to discuss all the possible problems that will come from the fact Renfield is now caught. That being said his character was so blah. It was clear he was a puppet from the start and seeing him go was not sad at all, he was a nuisance. Harker’s naivete is starting to irk, no way he suddenly stops suspecting Dracula of shadiness. Actually everyone’s inability to see Dracula’s motives is starting to grate. How is that Lady Jayne hasn’t noticed his lack a heartbeat before, or that Harker, who was the first to notice Dracula’s interest in Mina suddenly thinks he is all sunshine and rainbows? I’m still invested in the story but I really hope things pick up.