This From Dusk Till Dawn review contains spoilers.
Our trips down memory lane start early this week, as we watch some of Seth’s time in jail, and the visit from Carlos that started his trip towards Mexico and El Rey (the city, not the network). Carlos promises not just money, but security and peace of mind when the job’s done and they arrive at his place in Mexico. Seth is skeptical, saying it sounds like paradise (in other words, it’s too good to be true), but agrees in the end.
Present day keeps us moving ever forward, where the From Dusk Till Dawn we know will converge with the new series’ events. We see Carlos go pick up a shipment, only to be double-crossed by the idiots who were supposed to deliver. I know, I called them idiots and you’re not supposed to talk ill of the dead… but what can I say? They were idiots. And no, it has nothing to do with my sporting a cane and extra painkillers this week.
Seth goes to ditch and switch the car they’ve been driving for something a little more inconspicuous, while Richie and Monica (their hostage from the bank) chill for a while in a motel room. He stops by a Big Kahuna Burger where he proceeds to almost order food, but instead decides to enjoy a nice brunette instead (apparently his ex-wife). After their hello romp in the restroom, Seth tries to give his ex four million dollars in bonds so she doesn’t have to worry about crossing with him and possibly getting dead.
Meanwhile, our Winnebago family gets stuck as it overheats, and our preacher goes into a local bar looking for someone to help him out. Also at the bar is our own Ranger Freddie Gonzalez, talking to another fun and familiar face, Jake Busey. You might remember him from loads of things, from Enemy of the State to Starship Troopers (though my favorite place to remember him in is The Frighteners). He’s a professor named Tanner, and apparently Freddie is consulting him on the cartel murders. He IDs the knife with the eye symbol on it (which was Richie’s until recently) as being a dagger used in ritual sacrifices and while written about extensively, it’s never been seen before. Apparently, it shouldn’t exist, and it shows that the cartel worships the Vision Serpent. The knife (and the belief system) is supposed to imbue believers with two gifts: To See and To Take Action. This explains Richie’s visions. Yay! … I think.
Richie and Monica are chilling, watching cartoons, sitting on the bed when he suddenly gets a knife and unties her. He then promptly starts pacing, sort of freaking out, and writing in a notebook trying to figure something out. Monica asks to see what he’s drawing, and the images look both awesome (some nice drawing ability there, though cartoony) and also very strange (maybe more than a little disturbing too). They look similar to what you’d expect in a ritual chamber, with serpents and female figures with painted markings obviously being disemboweled. There are also images of the ritual being performed; three men holding down a woman as a fourth man cuts into her.
While Seth and his (ex?) wife argue about his choice of changing the plan and how it makes her feel to be left behind, Richie and Monica are bonding as she cleans his wound. And of course, by “bonding” I mean he’s hearing voices and seeing visions of her wanting him to “set her free”. Even as he fights his visions (sort of) and ties her up again, he sees her asking for more, telling him that they’re alone, that it’s just him and his ‘gordita’ (which literally means chubby or chubby little girl, but it can be used as an affectation sometimes) and there’s a serpent beside her.
In Winnebago-land, the siblings are fighting over whether they’re right or wrong in following their father, even as he and a friendly stranger try to fix the van. They resolve to let the van cool down, and go in for a drink. While dad’s inside, Kate takes a peek into the storage bins her dad stopped her from opening earlier (when she was looking for Tools) and finds some interesting paperwork. Was her dad drunk when the accident happened? Was he charged with vehicular manslaughter (like the papers seem to indicate)? Kate calls in pretending to be someone from her dad’s insurance company to try and find out more. Of course, while she’s on the phone, dad accidentally backs into her with the now-fixed Winnebago. She’s fine, but she insists on driving right afterwards.
Professor Tanner explains that the Mistress was transformed by the serpent god (into a queen/original vamp for snake-fang vamps, maybe?). Even as it’s described, we see back to the images from the first episode: The followers of the serpent god chasing and sacrificing the young woman, throwing her into the snake pit. And at the same time, Richie listens to the voices and looks through the hole in his hand, which previously he saw an eyeball in, and looks at Monica through it. There, he sees not her face, but the Mistress’ face begging “Set Me Free. Come to me”, even as Monica (the real one) is begging him to know how he knew her nickname, the one only her husband calls her. How’d he know “gordita” was her nickname?
Back at Big Kahuna Burger, Seth is ordering food for everyone when the ex starts smashing his car (insert heartbreak here) with a lead pipe. No, it’s not a flashback of a news story in Florida (like the girl who lit her boyfriend’s car on fire because he didn’t buy her a McFlurry), it’s her saying that maybe if she acts crazy, Seth will care about her (because he won’t ditch Richie and stay with her). He re-iterates that he is all Richie has, and that he won’t abandon him, and goes back inside to hopefully and finally get food.
Carlos, after asking three lovely ladies to carefully wrap the cargo as if they were wrapping gifts, kneels at an altar to his Goddess (with candles in the familiar Eye shape) and explains the events of the day. He tells her that they will now tremble at the mere mention of her name. Later we see him presenting his superiors (nine of them, to be exact) with the ‘gift’ he was shipping: a container of young women. Aaaaand…. Fangs. Dinner is served.
Back at the motel, Seth’s finally there with food, but Monica has checked out: eyes plucked and put on her palms (as seen on Richie’s hand in an earlier vision/flash), disemboweled (as seen in the drawings earlier). His excuse: “I worked it out. I can see now. I see.”
While he may not know consciously, I think this little ritual killing has cemented the gift of Sight originally started when he used the knife. The knife seems to have an effect on the people who have it in their possession, a la the One Ring from Lord of the Rings. While it hasn’t affected Martinez in any noticeable way yet, we see Tanner almost steal the knife thinking Martinez had asked him to take it with him for more tests. As he gave it back to Martinez, Tanner tells him the knife belongs to the Nine Lords of the Night. That’s why I made a point to count before: Carlos has Nine superiors he was trying to suck up to with the crate of girls. Interesting, right?
Now that the Sight seems to be cemented into Richie, will he be able to actually control the visions or will they just get worse? Will Seth and Richie reach the border before Martinez does? What did Kate find out when she called about the papers she found of her dad’s?
Find out and stay with us as we continue watching From Dusk Till Dawn right here on Den Of Geek.