In this week’s episode of The Strain, Eph opens up to Nora about his troubles in DC, Setrakian tracks the ancient book, and Gus is encountered by more sentient vampires.
Eichorst opens up this chapter for us by tutorial-izing Kelly’s husk in the ways of guising as a human, and how over time there may be some pieces missing, much like we had seen at the very beginning of the series where Eichorst dresses himself in the very same room.
It is in this episode that Eph and Zack’s awkward dirty laundry about Kelly is seemingly aired, as the two set off on a side quest for Eph’s intent to retrieve a rifle from one of Fet’s contacts. The father and son bonding finally has the chance to happen in the midst of performing surgery on an old man with a bullet wound. This brief side story provides some resolution for these two characters, and puts Zack in a “real world” situation, which is really only good for child characters, as most writers don’t know what to do with them other than give them asthma and a Point A goal; in this case “Save Mom.”
The point in the episode where Kelly does her titular “intruding” at the hideout in Red Hook is creepy if only because it built tension in her swaying of Zack’s decisions and in the cinematography. Kelly herself looks more deceivingly human, yet the Master / Eichorst send the Feelers along with her anyway, which, to me, kind of gives the whole thing away. Provided, the deception depends on if Zack is smart or just too stubborn.
Meanwhile, Gus and Angel scope out the surrounding city being ransacked and burned to the ground, both determined that the Gupta family can’t stay in New York, lest they lose their lives as well as their family business. As the daughter, Aanya, shares a tender moment with Gus (because reasons of youth), we see a determined Quinlan tapping on the window outside to have a chat. While this moment has a sense of exposition about it for the sake of getting Gus up to speed on our plot, Quinlan proves to be a bit telling about what he intends for Augustus as an agent hunting in the light, and Gus is able to properly articulate his disdain for the Ancients and The Master. Luckily for him, Quinlan is not favorable to either one of them.
The most compelling plot line of the week was an anonymous bidding war for the silver-bound ancient book between Eldritch Palmer and Abraham, seemingly in possession of Manhattan’s local catholic Cardinal. Rather than paying 500,000 dollars in gold however, both parties intend to steal the prized book. However, Eichorst reaches the devout Cardinal first. We’ve yet to see a character representing of catholicism put face to face with one of these monsters, and not only does the show’s writing make the presence of God, or lack thereof, felt through the Cardinal, but mostly through Richard Sammel chewing up the scene insinuating hopelessness, ultimately speaking into the camera about the desperation of a man’s faith. It was one of the more truly frightening and unsettling moments so far this season, and it was all based in performance.
The Strain Episode 2×08 “Intruder” (7/10)