VAN HELSING – Season 4 Episode 4 – SPOILERS
The Oracle, Ivory (Jennifer Cheon Garcia), and Sam (Christopher Heyerdahl) get together to raise Michaela (previously referred to as the Second of Three) from her coffin. Michaela is displeased that so few members of Ivory’s sisterhood have survived. (It is not mentioned why this is so, but one suspects that Vanessa has been curing the membership at an alarming rate.) Micheala calls the Oracle by her real name, Bathory. Are Michaela (Heather Doerksen) and Bathory (Jesse Stanley) two of the three unnamed “sisters” referred to in Stoker’s novel? In the short story Dracula’s Guest, published two years after Bram Stoker’s death, one of the three sisters is called Countess Dolengen of Gratz. (The other two are not named.) Gratz (with or without the T) is a city in Austria located some 300 kilometers from the castle in Slovakia where Countess Bathory was imprisoned and allegedly died. (Her grave has never been found.)
Since getting together with Bathory, Sam has lost his horns entirely. He is clean-cut, and dresses like a successful accountant. (He has even somehow gotten new glasses). Bathory, formerly known as The Oracle, has cleaned herself up nicely as well. Michaela initially doesn’t like Sam, and when he tries to explain that he killed love (meaning Mohammed) for the darkness (meaning at the behest of Bathory) Michaela tells him that he knows little of darkness and kisses him on the lips, to the obvious displeasure of the Countess. Did Bathory get Sam to kill Mohamed only because she was jealous?
Meanwhile, in the woods near Fort Collins, Vanessa is busy curing vampires. One re-humanized man wanders into Lee’s bar. Axel (Jonathan Scarfe) is there as well, and this encounter leads to Axel finding Vanessa. They fight for a bit. (Vanessa is surprised to find that Axel has fast healing abilities.). Then they make up (sort of), and Vanessa gives Axel the cross compass which seems to point to the nearest Van Helsing, just in case he ever needs to find her again. Axel says he needs to go back and do something the “right way”. Does that mean he’s going back to rescue Phil and Jolene?
Violet (Keeya King) decides that her stepdad isn’t telling her the entire truth about what happened to her birth parents. She has a picture of herself and her sister in her room, and her sister looks a lot like Jack (Nicole Muñoz). Violet decides to leave Fort Collins, something that will not make Hansen happy. She is (at least initially) unsuccessful in persuading Lee the Bartender (Ryan Jinn) to join her.
Hansen (Neal McDonough), who has sent Doc away somewhere, possibly to Loveland (which would reunite her with Jolene), displays superhuman strength in restraining Julius, and then tries to have Julius taken away as well, but the two guards he sends are not up to the task.
Bathory, Michaela, and Sam drive to Fort Collins to see Hansen. They drive there in a very clean looking forty year old Lincoln Continental. Bathory must have a base of operations somewhere that provided them with the car and the clean clothes and Sam’s new haircut and glasses. But the real question is: What is Hansen’s part in all this? What is his relation to Dracula?
Jack finds Vanessa and joins her on her travels. They still don’t know where they are going. Violet will probably try to leave Fort Collins with or without Lee, but that may not be possible now that Michaela and the gang have arrived.
Jennifer Spence (Karen in “Help Me“) will be Rachel’s mom Tessa, in the Freeform pilot for the projected mystery series CLOSE UP. Rachel (Fivel Stewart) is on a mission to expose, by any means necessary, the truth about her apparently normal New Jersey home town. Jeremy (Anthony Keyvan), whose relationship with Rachel is “complex”, is keeping a potentially explosive secret. Sheriff Griff (Sean Blakemore) is trying to decide if he should cover up the results of a recent investigation for the good of the town. Natalie Chaidez is showrunner, and Alex Kalymnios will direct the pilot. Production is now underway in Vancouver.
Spence is also Professor Kathy Torrance in TRACES, a six-episode series about Emma Hedges (Molly Windsor) who takes an online forensics course and finds that a fictitious case study presented in it bears a not inconsiderable resemblance to events in her own past. All six episodes are directed by women — three by Rebecca Gatward and three by Mary Nighy. TRACES will air on the Alibi Channel in the UK over a three week period in December. (No specific dates have been announced.)
Sarah Desjardins (Catherine in “Nothing Matters“) is Donna Sweett in at least six episodes of RIVERDALE‘s fourth season. One of Season Four’s major developments involves Jughead transferring to a new school, Stonewall Prep. Donna is also a student there, and she made her first (brief) appearance in Episode 4.2, “Fast Times at Riverdale High” as part of a study group talking about Melville’s Moby Dick. Jughead’s decision will likely put a strain on his relationship with Betty, who remains at Riverdale High. In the US, new episodes of RIVERDALE air on the CW Wednesdays at 8/7c. In the UK, episodes become available on Netflix on Thursdays, usually around 8am.