Just because the Warehouse likes Claudia doesn’t mean it’s not going to cause some mischief for her birthday – and what a birthday it is. While she and Artie are dealing with the effects of his being whammied, the remaining agents are investigating a prison break. It seems like a routine snag, bag and tag, until Steve’s ex Liam arrives on the scene. That’s when things start to heat up. Spoilers after the break.
It was a nice change of pace to have the ‘bad guy’ not be a horrible person. I will admit that I wasn’t thrilled when I thought that Barton was just a psycho who was out to kill his former gang member for money. I was pleasantly surprised when it was actually to stop his son from joining the same gang. It’s nice not to have to worry about deranged murderers every week. It was a little clumsy, but I liked it. It brought up a few different emotional responses in the characters, particularly in Pete and Steve, but for very different reasons. Pete, we know, still struggles with the loss of his father and he tends to become much more emotionally involved when there is a child/parent relationship involved. Steve, on the other hand, has to deal with fact that he might be alone forever.
We finally get to meet Steve’s ex—which, I have to admit, I hadn’t really put much thought into. After all, we didn’t know about Amanda until she showed up at the B&B. We knew about Sam right off the bat, but that probably had to do with just how recent it had been for Myka. Still, I liked Liam. It was nice to see Pete and Myka immediately jump to Steve’s defense, too. Steve spends most of his time with Claudia, so we tend to miss out on his relationship with the others. I think that it was maybe a little extreme of Steve to say that he would never be able to make it work with anyone but Liam, but I get his point. Pete’s struggled with balancing a personal life and the Warehouse, and it looks like it’s Steve’s turn. Admittedly, Steve has the additional issue of being a human lie detector, which is probably even more problematic. It’s good the two got to talk it out. They seemed like a good fit for each other, honestly, now that they’ve worked on their communication issues. He could still wind up being Steve’s OTP, after all.
I really enjoyed how they portrayed the Pete and Steve dynamic here. Sometimes it’s nice to just see people talk and be honest. Usually he’s reserved and collected, even with his mother and Claudia. It’s been an emotional season, and it’s easy to see how that would affect the emotional undercurrents in this episode. And there were a lot.
I have to say, I usually find it incredibly cheesy when shows try to use birthdays and anniversaries in their plot. I didn’t mind this one, in fact, I quite liked it. Artie and Claudia have been doing this ‘you’re a child, but really not’ dance since she’s joined the cast, so it didn’t feel out of place. Artie went above and beyond trying to make the day nice for Claudia and everyone was at least kind of in on it. I don’t think it’s out of the realm of possibility that Artie would have gotten a clown. I also think that this mini celebration comes in no small part because the characters need something to celebrate. This is probably the first time all season that Leena and Artie’s evil episode haven’t been hanging over their heads like a giant neon sign. It was subtle, but not too subtle, and it worked.
There was no mention of the Big Bad, be it Sutton or Charlotte, which is making me sort of antsy. We’re now officially in the back half of the season and we have no idea what’s going on. It’s possible that this has been deliberately left out because the Agents don’t know that there’s a threat like they did with Sykes, H.G. and MacPherson, but it still seems like cause to worry. I loved the first half’s reveal that Artie had been the big bad, but there was plenty of evidence there if you looked for it. Usually you can sort of suss out by this point what the general theme of the finale is going to be – going after Sykes, the showdown with MacPherson. I can honestly say that I’ve no clue other than a nagging suspicion that it will be tied to Claudia’s involvement in the Warehouse
Artifacts on display this week:
We’ve been seeing a lot more of the Warehouse lately, but less artifact labels. There are probably another dozen or so artifacts, but there’s almost no way to catch them all. I’m also kind of curious to know why the bouncing ball was in what appeared to be an isle reserved for mostly musical objects. Is this one of those personality/feeling sorts? Is it there because it makes people happy? Now that I know about the Feng Shui Spiral, I’d love to see more of it.
- Pompeii Amphora/Jar
- Ludwig can Beethoven’s Clock
- Jerry Garcia’s Black Blub
- The Original Bouncing Ball
I love Pete and Myka being awesome as much as the next person, but seriously, Myka just stuck her hand in front of something that was shooting lava. Was that really the smartest course of action? I guess the gloves wouldn’t have done much good, but it seemed a little careless and excessively dangerous for her to do that.
On that note, what happened to the cars? Did they melt? It sure looked like it, but it Steve is driving the exact same car at the end, paint job and all.
At the Table:
If things had gone differently, Artie could have been in a lot of trouble. Warehouse 13 relies very heavily on the use of ones’ senses. The Farnsworths make noise, and if you listen carefully, so do Teslas. Working at the Warehouse house and a full sensory experience and they’ve done a good job of integrating that with their audience. We know which smells are good and bad, which colors mean dangers, and the entire Warehouse just about runs on sound. What would have happened if Artie hadn’t gotten his hearing back when the bust was neutralized? He and Claudia both had to change tactic swiftly, and even with their quick thinking, things very nearly went pear shaped.
Most of us don’t think about it, but gaming is a full sensory experience most of the time. It’s something we take for granted, but extra sensory details can be inserted into your game with some extra description. Ameron tackled how to do this in his experience DMing for a blind player, but the lessons learned improve the game for players of all types. For more tips on how to create a full sensory experience, check out our articles on gaming with the 5 senses.
What about you guys? Are there any more artifacts you wish they’d paid attention to this week? Does Artie win at birthday surprises? What did you guys think of all of the interpersonal stuff? What did you all think of Liam? Are you rooting for him and Steve? Do you have speculations about the finale? Let us know!