Tuesday, June 25, 2013

'Defiance' recap: 'The Bride Wore Black'


This episode of Defiance makes a strong case about the benefits of staying single. We start the action off with a good old-fashioned bachelor party. Which just goes to show that Casti punks are just as annoying as human punks. The one redeeming quality Alak has shown is that he decides to forgo the ritual mounting of the stripper "bride." This causes a fight with his so-called friends. During the scuffle, the boys knock a hole in a wall and reveal a dry desiccated corpse. Looks like they've found Kenya's long lost husband, Hunter Bell.

The townsfolk have bigger things to worry about, though. It's finally time for the wedding of Alak and Christie. The whole town is looking forward to the party, even Tommy. He unsuccessfully tries to entice Irisa to be his date to the wedding. She thinks weddings are stupid and she doesn't date.

Have I mentioned that I like this girl? She finishes up with calling Tommy an idiot, which appears to be a term of endearment for her.

Thankfully, the flirting is interrupted by Tommy's recognition of the corpse. It seems that Tommy came to Defiance as a lowlife card shark. Back then, the NeedWant was just a hotel and a bar. Hunter caught the young Tommy cheating Datak and some of his buddies at poker and hauled him off to the lawkeeper's office. Instead of having him arrested, he gets him a job scrubbing toilets. This is probably the only good thing Hunter ever did with his life.

Eventually, Tommy gets made a deputy and his very first case was Hunter's disappearance. Ultimately, the townsfolk decided that Hunter had just skipped town, leaving his wife and business behind. Though that never sat well with Tommy. What nobody wants to talk about is that Hunter was a lowlife, wife-beating, criminal piece of shtako.

Turns out that pretty much everybody in town had a reason to want Hunter Bell dead. In typical beaten wife syndrome, Kenya believed that she loved Hunter despite his treatment of her. Amanda, of course, knew what was happening and we see her swear to never let him hurt her sister again in a flashback.

Back in the day, Datak started off working for Hunter. When he hit up Hunter for a raise, they began to fight. And in a twist, Rafe McCawley is the one who saves his pale ass from getting killed. It seems that Hunter was making a move on Rafe's mines and he didn't like it. The unlikely pair head off for a drink together. Tommy stubbornly continues to investigate Hunter's death even though Nolan has heard enough. Some Liberata hair in Hunter's final resting place lead them to Jared, the NeedWant's bartender. Only he turns up dead; his throat slit by a Casti charge blade. This obviously leads back to Datak.

Now, Datak has been busy today. He and Rafe are having a sitdown before the wedding. It's important to remember that Datak only agreed to this wedding because Stahma convinced him that this would ultimately get them the mines. Rafe takes great joy in telling him that he's decided to give the mines to a trust to benefit the Irathients who owned the land originally. Well, you can imagine how infuriated Datak is to hear this choice bit of news.

He storms home to Stahma and screams that the wedding is off. She tries to calm him and make him see reason, but it's pointless. He's a very pale, long-haired idiot. He then storms off to Alak and gives him a long-winded speech about family tradition. He sums it up by telling him that he can't possibly marry a human. Alak does try to grow a backbone, but fails as usual. He obediently trots to Christie's house and breaks the news to her. Rafe walks in about the time Christie runs crying to her room.

When he finds Alak in his living room, the kid spills his tearful story. Rafe decides that Alak really does love his daughter and tells him that he can go ahead and marry her. It seems that everyone in the Tarr family, but Datak, is in on the deal. Stahma even makes Christie an old-fashioned bridal veil, when the traditional Casti metal blindfold is turned down. Of course, Stahma wisely disavows any knowledge of it later. All in all, Stahma has been extremely kind to Christie. It makes one wonder what she is scheming. In the end, Rafe takes great pleasure in informing Datak that the wedding will go on. He will take care of Alak if Datak can't be bothered. So the town gets its big wedding after all. Irisa even decides to show up in some colorful Irathient formal wear. She even holds Tommy's hand.

While everyone else is attending the wedding, Doc Yewll has another chat with Nicky. You see, Nicky really killed Hunter, because he discovered her secret. Have you guessed the secret yet? Nicky was one of the Indogene spies that was made over to look human. Hunter discovered this and was trying to extort money from her. She killed him by smashing him in the head with her walking stick in front of Doc Yewll and Jared the bartender.

Now, we've already been told that Doc Yewll had a complicated past. She came to Defiance like everyone else, to start over. Only she fell in with Nicky and Burch and was sucked into their schemes for power. After she realizes that Nicky killed the Liberata so he couldn't tell anyone what she did all those years ago, she can't ignore the problem anymore. She calls Nicky to her office and injects her with a paralytic and then kills her. During this procedure Yewll tells her how she has learned to be a healer in Defiance and doesn't want to kill anyone anymore. And though she hates to do this, it is for the greater good.

She rounds it all off with a suicide note confession from Nicky for Tommy and Nolan to find. The note only says that she killed Hunter for the town's good, and then Jared, to cover her tracks. So that ties everything up on a nice little bow, and Nolan congratulates Tommy on solving his first case. While Nolan is thumping Tommy on the back, Yewll steals away to hide the Golden Knot. If it's only one of many genocidal artifact weapons out there, then Defiance is probably in some seriously deep shtako.

The next episode of Defiance, “The Past Is Prologue” airs on July 1, at 9 p.m. ET on Syfy.