Haven returned to Syfy last night for Season 5 with “See No Evil,” which picked up right where Season 4 left off. I’ll admit I’m fairly skeptical going into this season: Season 4 was not my favorite, and it seems from the teasers that Season 5 will be doubling down on some of the elements I didn’t like — namely, Audrey not being Audrey. But more on that in a minute.
First, a note for our Canadian readers: If I’m reading the Showcase site correctly, Season 5 will begin for you next Thursday, September 18th, but you’re having a two-hour premiere, which means the U.S. and Canadian airings should be roughly synchronized (though at different times on the same dates) from then out. At least until someone skips a week for a holiday or something. So we’ll see you next week, Canada!
So. When we pick up, Nathan, Duke, Dwight, and the Teagues are scattered, Jennifer is missing, and Audrey is Mara. And this means I’m annoyed right from the beginning, because the main thing I’ve liked about this show from the start is the dynamic between Nathan, Duke, and Audrey, and they keep making Audrey not be Audrey. I’ll grant that it’s an interesting story, but I’m not sure it’s the story I want to watch. And as I was writing this, it struck me that Mara is an interesting character, and I’d be happy to have her as a big bad if it didn’t mean not having Audrey. Anyway. At least Nathan and Duke are currently working together, though their goals aren’t exactly the same; they’re both clearly on the side of good, now, but Duke’s priority is getting Jennifer back, while Nathan’s priority is getting Audrey back. (Dwight, meanwhile, is presumably asking himself how he wound up with these two lovesick guys for partners.)
But is getting Audrey back still an option? I have to assume so, because I don’t think the show would actually get rid of its main character, but the fact that we’ve seen multiple other characters in her body at least gives the lead-in-peril question more tension than it usually has on other shows. Mara insists that Audrey is completely gone (though she has her memories, along with those of her previous personas, which makes it easier to impersonate her), and Nathan flat-out refuses to believe this, and while I do believe Audrey will come back in some way, the show did a good job of making it extremely hard to tell whether Audrey’s consciousness was actually having an effect on Mara at this point. Dwight is much more open to the idea of Audrey being gone than Nathan is, which makes sense, and which leads Nathan to avoid telling Dwight that Mara started the Troubles, because he’s worried that Dwight will kill Mara and then Audrey will really be gone. Duke eventually mentions it to Dwight, assuming he already knew, so it will be interesting to see whether there’s fallout from that.
Mara’s goal is to get William back, so she, like Duke, is looking for Jennifer – because she wants to use her to open a door. And I say a door because it looks like there are actually several of them. Mara spends most of the episode going around to various thin spots between the worlds — she calls them “thinnies” but can we please not say that? It sounds stupid — but the doors are all “sealed” in some way preventing her from getting through. (And in this process, we see how much Mara really does not care about people, as she casually kills the coffee shop guy.) Nathan and Duke think that Jennifer is a step ahead of them, sealing the doors, but Mara scoffs at this idea. Do you think it’s Jennifer? If not, any ideas about who it could be?
One of Mara’s threats turns out to be somewhat hollow: she says she’s going to inflict more Troubles on the town, but Nathan eventually figures out that she can’t, at least right now — and Mara confesses that William hid the box of aether (the black goo stuff). So who’s actually starting Troubles? Maybe Duke. A Trouble last seen in 1929 comes back — it involves creepy “See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil” monkey dolls and results in people’s faces being sewn up — and Duke realizes that all the Troubles his family ever ended are in him now because of what happened in the cave. And they might just pop up at any time, when he’s upset? Oh. Good. That won’t wreak havoc at all.
Given Nathan’s general reticence about his feelings, it’s even more striking how open he now is about his love for Audrey and how firm his belief is that, basically, love will conquer all. Throughout the episode, he uses this in his confrontations with Mara — “Audrey won’t let you hurt me. I know she’s still in there.” “You can’t get William back, but I will get Audrey back.” Is he really completely convinced, or will he not let himself entertain other options because he knows he’d fall apart, or is he partially trying to mess with Mara’s head? Possibly all three. I just find it a marvel that this laconic Mainer who literally could not feel is making these sweeping romantic declarations, and that I totally buy into it, as character development. (I would, of course, like it even more were Audrey actually around.) As he insists that “Our love is stronger than anything that you and William could ever — ” Mara shoots him, and even then, he doesn’t give up. His possibly last words are “I’ll always love you, Parker,” and in a possible point in favor of Audrey still having some presence or control, Mara gets a weird look on her face and runs off, leaving him injured, instead of going through with actually finishing him off. My notes, by the way, say “SHE SHOT HIM” with many capital letters, because — well, I think he’ll be fine, really, but one of my big fears with this show is that Eric Balfour is such a fan favorite that they could think killing Nathan is an actual option. I’m 99% sure they won’t. But I worry.
What did you think of “See No Evil,” and of the set up for Season 5 in general? Any theories on where things are heading?
Other favorite lines and stray thoughts:
- Possibly important fact that Vicky reminds us of at the beginning: this is the longest the Troubles have ever been in Haven.
- Speaking of Vicky, a brief quibble: If she doesn’t use her Trouble ever, why is it suddenly worth it for a run-of-the-mill crying baby? That is not a dire situation. Think about your choices, Vicky.
- “That lighthouse just can’t catch a break.” Poor lighthouse.
- “I know you’ve been shot. And I’d be more sympathetic if you hadn’t been shooting at me.”
- “The handsome ones just don’t have to be very smart, do they?” I mean, Nathan is smart, but hee.
- I sincerely like the people worried about insurance and liability. Because seriously. You’d think by this point no one in Haven would be able to get insurance for anything, and I always appreciate when people on supernatural shows are concerned about practical matters.
- Duke, with my second favorite line the show has ever had: “You try operating a supernatural door to another dimension using a vampire novel and a positive attitude!”
- While — as I keep saying; you’re going to be sick of me saying this really soon, I know — I’d rather have Audrey actually there … sure, I’ll take all the adorable lovesick Nathan flashbacks.
- There was at least one offhand reference to the Guard, so I’m curious to see to what extent they’ll be back.
Next week we continue with “Hear No Evil,” and I’ll be happy when we finish this series of titles because I’ve already had to look up whether this episode was “See No Evil” or “Hear No Evil” six times.
NOTE: Next week is actually “Speak No Evil.” I told you I kept messing up these titles.
(Image courtesy of Syfy.)