Beauty And The Beast episode 4 review: Basic Instinct

Review Rachael Kates 2 Nov 2012 - 16:45

Trust was the theme of this week's enjoyable Beauty and the Beast. Here's Rachael's review of Basic Instinct...

This review contains spoilers.

1.4 Basic Instinct

The game was on in New York for Catherine this week, the NYPD vs FDNY softball game that is. It was hokey but I won't lie - I was charmed right down to my toes watching Catherine miss hitting a softball over and over when, as Tess said "You have great hand-eye coordination. You can hit a target, why not a softball?". The theme of teamwork played really well this week, with the episode circling around trusting yourself and other people. The victim in the crime was a troubled boy whom Vincent found beaten near to death in a dumpster, the boyfriend of a girl whose mother managed to fracture her trust in him to help her with the crime.

For Cat, the trust issues were rooted in Vincent and her relationship to him. Muirfield finally showed itself - dragging her off to your typical creepy, empty warehouse where the villain calmly and matter-of-factly breaks down why Catherine's a sad deluded little girl who cant see what a monster Vincent really is. Honestly, I wonder about the landscape of Manhattan sometimes. Is it just littered with empty warehouses? Because everyone in any action-based movie or TV show seems to end up in one at some point or another. Muirfield's guy makes her an offer she almost can't refuse - Vincent for information on her mother's murder: the very reason she went from a Princeton education to the police academy in the first place. They sweeten the pot by showing her pictures of people Vincent hurt in the past - people who weren't soldiers or serial killers. 

I do adore that Catherine went to Vincent with it. She told him what was going on, didn't hide it or lie. She held back some things, but I appreciated it nonetheless. Vincent's reaction to the news was to worry about her which felt a little condescending but I blame that on the lack of sufficient build-up of what Muirfield actually is more than Jay Ryan's acting chops or the motivations themselves.

What really worked was later, at yet another of the softball scenes, when Vincent and Catherine encounter each other in the woods and he realises that she is afraid of him. Vincent's voice, his face, his eyes, everything about him made it crystal clear that his heart was breaking and that it made up for the holes spotted earlier. Catherine looking at him that way is his worst nightmare come to life.

Naturally, that leads him to do something unbelievably stupid. Being upset and in pain will do that to a person. It's not surprising when he turns himself in to protect her. It fits with his nature and everything we've seen of him so far.

What was surprising was how well Catherine and JT worked together to take him back. For the first time, I could actually see how JT would be someone you would want to be close to because the guy goes to the wire for Vincent and he helps Catherine go there too. Vincent lets himself be shackled in honest to goodness steel manacles a la some medieval torture chamber, and taken off to Muirfield in a creepy black van when JT and Cat appear to rescue him. That puts the two people Vincent was trying to protect in danger and the beast comes out.

By far, this was the best example of the beast we've seen so far. This is the first time we've seen him all mottled and messed up and actually roaring. It was kind of awesome - although you can see how low their budget is in the way they try to use shaky cam to hide the actual effects involved in his transformation. It's a stretch, visually, but he more than makes up for it when strangles his enemy with the chains holding his manacles together. It was one of the better attacks we've seen from Vincent thus far. Yeah, this show makes me bloodthirsty. I'm not sure why.

Thankfully, my desire for carnage was satisfied by the end of the exchange and I could watch the closing softball shtick without feeling cheated. It was adorable. Our team won, Cat managed to hit the ball and there were happy dances. I grinned at my TV like a loon and then clutched the pearls as Vincent appeared at her window in the closing scene - game ball in hand. He'd come and watched her play. From the shadows like the creepy stalker he is but still, he came. Sigh. Vincent was all nervous and twitchy giving the softball to her. It was adorable and worked really well with how they discussed what happened, how Catherine addressed his concern that she was afraid of him. Honestly, if the closing scenes continue like this - I'm not sure how I'm supposed to get through each shouting "Just kiss already!" at the screen. I'm having a hard enough time resisting as it is. 

Read Rachael's review of the previous episode, All In, here.

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