Haven is back! Hurrah! This quiet, quirky summer show is one of my favorites, and I’m looking forward to recapping it for you this season. A quick refresher: When last season ended, Nathan had finally told Audrey that he could feel her touch, and Nathan/Audrey shippers everywhere were very excited, but then they all got distracted by the death of Nathan’s father (who, it turns out, was not actually his biological father) and by a woman showing up claiming to be the real Audrey Parker.
In this first installment of Season Two, “A Tale of Two Audreys”, our team must figure out the Trouble of the week while dealing with these ongoing issues. Let’s deal with the Trouble first – the Ten Plagues (you know, frogs, locusts, etc.) start occurring in Haven, and Audrey and Nathan eventually trace them to a recent widower named T.J. Smith. While mourning his wife, he went to the Good Shepherd Church and started reading the Bible, and the things he read began to manifest. Things reach a crisis point when the two Audreys corner T.J. in his baby’s room and he threatens to kill himself to stop the plagues, while all around Haven all first-born sons are suddenly taken ill. (Something to keep in mind: Nathan is affected; Duke is not.) Audrey manages to stop the plagues by having T.J. read The Velveteen Rabbit to his baby; as the Audreys leave, they see a shadow of a rabbit on the wall.
The church’s involvement is not coincidental: Nathan accuses the Rev of trying to start a war within Haven, and the Rev readily agrees, saying it’s a war on sin. The religious nature of this week’s Trouble really brings out the dichotomy in Haven: Rev thinks the Cursed, as he calls them, need to ask for God’s forgiveness in order to save themselves and the town, while Nathan insists that the Troubled didn’t do anything wrong or bring their afflictions upon themselves. Audrey is clearly on Nathan’s side, and while Duke insists that he’s merely on his own side, it’s becoming clearer than ever that his involvement with the town, and with both Nathan and Audrey, runs deep. Meanwhile, the Rev is trying to recruit Duke to his side, in pursuit of his somewhat vague goals, but more on that later.
Audrey holds up surprisingly well when faced with Audrey 2.0, even though she’s clearly questioning herself. She thinks Audrey 2.0 is Troubled, while Audrey 2.0 thinks our Audrey is just insane. They discover that they have all the same memories, including one that neither had ever told anyone, about defending a girl from an abusive foster father and being inspired by this to get into law enforcement. Audrey is shocked at the end of the episode when the FBI show up and say that Audrey 2.0 is real, but Audrey 2.0 feels connected enough that she doesn’t turn Audrey in to them, and instead says that the impostor was headed for Canada. It seems like we’ll have two Audreys around for a while, at least, so it should be interesting to see where that goes.
Even as Audrey doubts herself, though, Nathan never doubts her or wavers in his belief that she’s the real Audrey. He’s distracted, though, by refusing to talk about or deal with his father’s death. (He’s a New Englander. What do you expect?) He eventually decides to tell people that his dad was lost at sea, which is an interesting choice given that earlier in the episode Duke said that his father was lost at sea, and the Rev implied that that wasn’t the whole story. (Am I the only one starting to suspect that Duke and Nathan might turn out to be brothers, somehow?) It looks like Nathan will also end up being interim Chief of Police, although he claims that he’s not sure he wants the job.
While Audrey and Nathan are wrapped up in these issues from last season, Duke gets a whole new issue to contend with: A wife that neither the audience nor Nathan knew he had. Evie Crocker shows up in Haven, and Duke doesn’t seem exactly happen to see her. When she asks why he assumes she wants something from him, he replies “Because your lips are moving.” He finally admits that he doesn’t want her around because he’s afraid that she’ll wind up in the middle of the Troubles, but Evie, for her part, is suspicious of Duke’s motivations for remaining in Haven and is determined to stick around and find out why he’s there.
Meanwhile, Duke is also in the middle of the battle between Nathan and the Rev. He thinks the Rev knows something about the mysterious symbol associated with his family, but the Rev won’t tell him anything unless Duke declares for his side. Duke’s response: “If you knew me as well as you pretended to, then you’d know I stand for me.” Later, when Nathan recruits Duke to go along with him and Audrey to confront T.J., Duke grumbles “Why does everyone think that I want to help?”, but he and the audience both know that, as much as he and Nathan claim to hate each other, they’re always actually there for each other and Audrey when it comes down to it. The Rev has clearly noticed this too, as he tells Duke “You may refuse to choose a side, but sooner or later a side will choose you.” For now, at least, it seems that Duke has chosen Nathan and Audrey’s side by default, but we’ll see if upcoming events – and Evie – throw a wrench in this.
My favorite scene in the episode came toward the end, when Nathan finally buries his father and Duke shows up, unasked, to help. Their solid but reluctant bond is encapsulated in their exchange:
Duke: “You could have told me about your dad.”
Nathan: “You could have told me about your wife.”
Duke: “Fair enough. You been thinking at all about what the Rev said?”
Duke: “Yeah, me neither. But just so we’re clear … I’m lying.”
That is perhaps one of the most honest moments Duke has had, and I can’t wait to see where it will lead this season.
Photo Courtesy of Syfy