VAN HELSING – Season 3 Episode 3 – SPOILERS
Vanessa spends most of the episode in the body of her great-grandmother Lilly Van Helsing who has just arrived in 1896 Hong Kong by steamship with her maidservant Siobhan (Siobhan Williams) and her husband Edward Hawkins (Adrian Hough). Edward has traveled there for business purposes, and is to meet with the head of the East Asia Trading Company. Lily meets with Agnes, the wife (?) of the colony’s Governor, whose maiden name is Seward. “My father”, Agnes says, “was a faithful servant to your grandfather Abraham.” Vanessa learns that vampire activity is suspected in the area, and Agnes gives Lily/Vanessa the address of Mr. Tsui (Lee Shorten), a shopkeeper who knows about vampires, and has “ominous and important things” to share with her.
Siobhan may have gotten things mixed up when she said that it was the Governor’s wife who arranged to meet with Lily. The governor of Hong Kong in 1896 was the twice widowed Sir William Robinson, G.C.M.G., whose second wife died in 1894. There is no record of a third marriage, so whatever his relationship with the woman Vanessa had tea with, she was not his wife.
A hint is given as to where Edward and Lily are living. Agnes mentions the recent outbreak of plague, and when Lily seems surprised she says “Oh, surely you’ve heard of it in Chicago.”
Lily’s husband is, in the beginning, the very definition of a male chauvinist. Lily/Vanessa spends much effort evading Edward’s restrictions (with Siobhan’s help). Their efforts include slipping him a mickey on one occasion, and beating the crap out of the servant left to guard them on another.
Vanessa visits Mr. Tsui, from whom she learns that vampires have been commonplace for a long time in the Chinese countryside, but have recently invaded the cities to avoid plague-tainted blood. Tsui tries to instill martial arts discipline in Vanessa, and succeeds to some degree in getting her to control her anger. (Vanessa has many good reasons to be angry, but none of them seem to explain why she is angry all the time.)
Cyril Abernathy (Gary Peterman), the head of the East Asia Trading Company is murdered, and Edward goes off to investigate. He ends up in an opium den at the mercy of The B’ah (Jennifer Spence), and has to be rescued by his wife. He watches Lily/Vanessa do battle with The B’ah and her minions. Both Lily and The B’ah (who is inhabiting an earlier version of her own body) have been brought to this point in time by Elder Susan. Edward has no clue that his wife has been temporarily possessed by their descendant. The B’ah deduces that she must be in what she calls a “however” created by another Elder.
Lily/Vanessa is able to catch a thrown knife, so she has had some training. She’s in Lily’s body, though, and Lily does not have Vanessa’s ability to heal. The knife thrown by The B’ah is poisoned, and its a good thing that Lily stabbed The B’ah (who immediately vanished in a puff of pink smoke) because the only antidote to the poison was The B’ah’s own blood, which Lily is able to lick from the blade of her sword.
Edward, having been rescued by his swashbuckling wife, has a change of heart, and joins her feminist anti-vampire campaign. Then Agnes (Camille Mitchell) drops by with a bit of bad news. Twelve suspicious looking crates are being shipped to San Francisco by the East Asia Trading company, and it’s too late to stop them. (It’s a fair bet that each contains an Elder, one of them being The B’ah.)
Vanessa seems to spend about 48 hours in Hong Kong, but in real time, the entire experience transpires in the blink of an eye. Elder Susan (Hilary Jardine) makes the mistake of expressing surprise that Vanessa survived the process, making Vanessa realize that he cannot be trusted. Vanessa frees The Elder from his bond, returns his totem, and, having gained his trust for a moment, kills him by running a sword through his heart. We do not see The Elder change into his original form when he dies.
If the twelve Elders originated in China, how are they connected to Dracula? How did Edward and Lily come to live in Chicago? In the previous episode, Lily checks into Renfield House on 21 May 1906 (according to her death certificate). That’s a little over a month after the great San Francisco earthquake. Was she looking for an Elder? Were the Elders disturbed from their sleep by the quake?
UPDATE: 4 December 2018 — TIME FOR ME TO COME HOME FOR CHRISTMAS will premiere on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries on 9 December at 9/8c.
Gwynyth Walsh (Magdalene in “Last Time“) will be Barbara in the Netflix series BLACK SUMMER, which will star Jaime King as Rose, a mother who teams up with a small group of American refugees in hopes of finding her daughter during the most deadly summer of a zombie apocalypse. BLACK SUMMER is a spinoff of the SyFy series Z NATION, but will have more horror and less comedy than its parent program. Netflix has ordered eight episodes. No release date has been announced.
Gary Peterman (Cyril Abernathy) is Santa Claus in TIME FOR ME TO COME HOME FOR CHRISTMAS, a film inspired by a song by Blake Shelton, and starring Josh Henderson as country singer Heath Sawyer. Heath is traveling home to Oklahoma to spend the holidays with his family when his flight is canceled. He meets Cara Hill (Megan Park) who is in a similar predicament and has the same destination. Meeting Cara somehow enables Heath to overcome the writer’s block that developed after the death of his father. TIME FOR ME TO COME HOME FOR CHRISTMAS will premiere on Hallmark Movies & Mysteries on Saturday 15 December.
Lee Shorten (Mr. Tsui) will be Brian in THE INTRUDER, a psychological thriller about a young couple (Meagan Good and Michael Ealy) who purchase a home in Napa Valley from a “motivated seller” (Dennis Quaid) who then terrorizes the new owners, and refuses to leave the property. Directed by Deon Taylor, THE INTRUDER will be released in the US on 26 April.
Shorten will also be Officer Chen in NOELLE, a film about Noelle Claus (Santa’s daughter, played by Anna Kendrick) taking control of operations at the North Pole. Rumour has it that the film will not have a theatrical release, but instead will be part of the launch of Disney’s new streaming service (expected in the fall of 2019).