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Blood Ties: Heart of Fire

I really loved this episode.

First, my completely shallow responses:

Holy crap. Mike should be forced to have stubble and blood on his face in every episode, because he was hotter than a hot thing. When it came to the books I was a Henry girl through and through, but in the show I actually think I'm starting to favor Mike (albeit slightly) over Henry.

On the other hand, Henry was also amazingly hot tonight. I really can't decide if I find feral-vampire -Henry-of-the-artfully-torn-shirt more, or if I liked regal-Henry-of-the-flashback better. It's a tough choice. I have to admit I've been wondering, lately, if Kyle Schmid really had the range to play Henry, but I did think he did a good job with flashback Henry, bringing that certain edge of entitlement a bastard son of royalty would have had.

Also, I *must* make icons of the two of them in each other's arms, walking down the hallway in that last scene, because that was slashy heaven.

Second, my religion-geek responses:

Hey, not bad! Grand Inquisitor, a little cliched but why the hell not--if you're going to do over-the-top religious insanity, no one can resist the Spanish Inquisition! And how hilarious that the Inquisitor was using the dark arts to stay alive. I confess I was laughing as Javier recited Revelation while torturing Henry, but even though I was amused by the OTT of it, I still found it effective. And props to them for having people in the flashback praying in Latin. The part that made me laugh hardest, though, was Henry saying grace before meals right before he ate Javier. That was PRICELESS.

Finally on to the episode as a whole, and character stuff:

I had thought Mike turning in Henry would drive Mike and Vicki apart, and yet what it actually did was allow them to really work together on a case like they haven't really all season. And damn, they're a great team. Fantastic partnership vibe, and they know each other well enough to really play off each other's strengths. I thought their interrogation of the prostitute, for example, showed that very well.

At the same time, this episode really showcased Henry in a way we haven't seen before. We got lots of Henry's history, via the flashbacks--yay flashbacks! (I have watched *so* much bad television **cough Forever Knight, Highlander cough** because of flashbacks like that, and I thought they did a great job with them). We also got to see how complex he is as a character, and the extent to which being a vampire does and doesn't shape his ethical choices: he lets the rat go free, and he's willing to confess to save Vicki's life, but he kills Javier's helper in the past and also kills Javier. To be honest, I can't remember Henry ever killing any non-demon in the books; can anyone refresh my memory about this? I guess they've decided that Henry can kill on the show, and Mike doesn't, and that's going to be one of the divisions between them?

I would have predicted that Mike's betrayal of Henry would have shifted the triangle so Vicki was being more sympathetic to Henry in this episode, but that actually wasn't the case, either. She was certainly concerned for Henry's life, and didn't want him to betray himself to protect her from Javier, but she was also extremely concerned for Mike after Henry fed from him. I do think what this episode did, though, was open Vicki's eyes to exactly what Henry is capable of. It was very interesting indeed that she went back for the illumination del sol, or whatever it was called. To protect herself and/or Mike from Henry in the future? Or just a handy weapon if one encounters a rogue vampire?

Coreen continues to shine in the small amount of screentime she gets--I'm really not sure *how* she and the professor made the conceptual leap from "immortality" to "Chinese," but it was nice to actually *see* her get her scooby on, and I'm glad they brought back the professor. I also like the fact that some of the background characters at the police station are starting to be more fleshed out, like Mike's female colleague who covered for him. And the pathologist, whose name I can't remember, continues to be absolutely fun.

My only complaint about this whole episode is why on earth didn't Vicki and Mike try to shield Delphine from the sun? Are we supposed to think it happened so quickly they couldn't stop it? Because honestly, that pissed me off: she really died a needless death, all just to get Mike to realize vampire deaths are wrong too???

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( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
norwich36
Apr. 23rd, 2007 08:26 pm (UTC)
I look forward to reading your meta on this--and I definitely support a ot3 reading of this show. It's really my favorite resolution to love triangles, anyway. Also, I love how Javier's immortality agent could be the solution to the long-term problem of being in love with a vampire, and really, having two people to feed off of makes Henry more capable of something somewhat close to monogamy.

I did really love how much depth Henry had in this episode.
(Deleted comment)
sunryse00
Apr. 23rd, 2007 05:19 pm (UTC)
Hope you don't mind that I wandered in off the street...

Also, I *must* make icons of the two of them in each other's arms, walking down the hallway in that last scene, because that was slashy heaven.

I'll take one of those please.

I do think what this episode did, though, was open Vicki's eyes to exactly what Henry is capable of. It was very interesting indeed that she went back for the illumination del sol, or whatever it was called. To protect herself and/or Mike from Henry in the future? Or just a handy weapon if one encounters a rogue vampire?


I like it that Vicki has now seen pretty much the worst of Henry, one of the things that drove me nuts on Buffy was that Buffy always had this idealistic and unrealistic vision of Angel, even after S2 she separated him into his two parts. Vicki now knows exactly who and what Henry is and what he is capable of or could be in the future.

My only complaint about this whole episode is why on earth didn't Vicki and Mike try to shield Delphine from the sun? Are we supposed to think it happened so quickly they couldn't stop it? Because honestly, that pissed me off: she really died a needless death, all just to get Mike to realize vampire deaths are wrong too???

I thought that too, and one of my thoughts is that at first they didn't realize what was happening and then they didn't think she'd go that fast. Heck, if Spike went poof that fast he wouldn't have made it past the third season of BtVS, so even I was a bit surprised at the quickness. OTOH, I think it's a set up to a future plot point of what could happen to Henry if he doesn't make it home before sunrise after a night with Mike
norwich36
Apr. 23rd, 2007 08:31 pm (UTC)
*Waves hello* Always nice to meet new people, especially people who like Blood Ties.

I'll take one of those please.

I need to find a good source for caps of this episode, first!

I like it that Vicki has now seen pretty much the worst of Henry, one of the things that drove me nuts on Buffy was that Buffy always had this idealistic and unrealistic vision of Angel, even after S2 she separated him into his two parts. Vicki now knows exactly who and what Henry is and what he is capable of or could be in the future.

Interesting comparison. For me, what was notable is that this episode signals that the writers are planning on making Henry a little darker than he was in the books, where I believe he was depicted as avoiding killing most of the time. But at least we're not going to get an Angel/Angelus split, so I'm happy about that.

OTOH, I think it's a set up to a future plot point of what could happen to Henry if he doesn't make it home before sunrise after a night with Mike

Clearly he will just have to spend the day at Mike's! Like a sensible vampire.



sunryse00
Apr. 24th, 2007 12:49 am (UTC)
Let me introduce you to the_grynne. she usually has her caps up within a day or two...or any time now.

You can find all her BT caps here

what was notable is that this episode signals that the writers are planning on making Henry a little darker than he was in the books,

I haven't read the books but I really like that Henry isn't a watered down vampire that is nothing but fangs and strength. I think one of the things that I really like is that Henry does have a dark side, besides making a very interesting character it also gives him room for growth. My favorite characters are always the ones that change the most by the end of a series *coughSpikecough*

Clearly he will just have to spend the day at Mike's! Like a sensible vampire.

He didn't last this long by taking chances...I just hope they remember the curtains. ;)
(Deleted comment)
norwich36
Apr. 23rd, 2007 08:43 pm (UTC)
Part of why it works is because I think a person has to have a certain hypocritical streak in them to be able to ignore the evil of torture while insisting they're engaging in righteousness despite that part where they're, you know, torturing someone.

Oh, definitely. Though it actually did help to make him an actual Grand Inquisitor, since at least ignoring that hypocrisy was consistent with that particular historical worldview.
I'm resisting the urge to connect defense of torture, the Spanish Inquisition, and certain debates over the latest SV episode.

t was the best thing ever. I totally laughed out loud at that and also at how neither Vicki nor Mike was focused enough to think, "Hmm ... perhaps we should not leave the torture victim alone with his torturer." For some reason, that cracked me up because realistically, as cops (well, a cop and a former cop), they would know to maintain that distance. And sure, Mike had just been bitten and all, but still. It was as if they're were subconsciously perfectly okay with Javier getting eaten. Which, really, one can't really blame them. *eg*

Yeah, I had that same thought: umm, Vicki, shouldn't you be checking on Henry, now that you know that Mike is still alive? But really, what could they have done with Javier? The evidence that he was murdering vampires was destroyed with Delphine, and it's not like Henry could testify in daylight that he'd been tortured. I can see that this is going to be an ongoing problem for Mike, though, with his commitment to due process that I really respect.

Oh, definitely. I loved it that she went back for the pendant (aside: it was driving me nuts that no one in the episode even took a stab at translating the name; I mean, I've not taken Spanish in 23 years and I could work out that it meant "the illuminated/lighted sun") because there are at least three reasons why: (1) so it could never be used on Henry again; (2) so she could use it against him to protect herself and/or Mike (or Coreen); and/or, (3) to use on a rogue vampire. But the series doesn't necessarily provide any hints one way or the other. Loved that like burning.

Yes, I also love the ambiguity of her motive. Now that she's been forced to see the true threat Henry might pose to someone she cares about, it could be #2, but 1 and 3 are equally plausible--and she may have all three in mind.

I'm definitely loving how complicated the character dynamics are becoming in this show.


cinderella81
Apr. 23rd, 2007 06:25 pm (UTC)
Torn shirt Henry or Regal Henry ... decisions decisions! *G*

Yes, Mike did look sexy ...

And Henry saying Grace before eating Javier ... ROTFLMAO!!!!!

All in all, it was a fabulous ep!!
norwich36
Apr. 23rd, 2007 08:23 pm (UTC)
Yes, I definitely agree! It was too sexy for my screen, really.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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