TV Show Review

TV Review: THE STRAIN: Season 2, Episode 9: The Battle For Red Hook [FX]


FX’s  The Strain The Battle For Red Hook TV Show Review. The Strain: Season 2, Episode 9: The Battle for Red Hook brings community to the forefront of the war with the Master (Robert Maillet) and his strigoi, but is a little slow to warm up with  humdrum  dialog and more incredibly green, would be strigoi bait, making their infiltration seem effortless. This is supposed to be New York with a vampire infestation, and there are hardly any cops-anywhere-to be found. Where is the National Guard? I just can’t believe this is how it goes down.

Need a water taxi to Red Hook during a quarantine? Don’t worry, there’s a sucker born every minute. Climb aboard, strigoi. Nothing to be ashamed of here, just pay me in full when we reach the unguarded dock. Yeah, sure.  If it talks like a vampire Nazi, acts like a vampire Nazi, and makes deals like a  vampire Nazi, it must be hard to say “no”!

Toward the middle, the action begins, and the moment the power goes out, killing the protective UV lights, counselwoman Justine Feraldo (Samantha Mathis) needs these couple of guys loitering outside her work trailer because, yeah, when a cop throws you out of her meeting, they don’t actually make you leave the premises, especially while toting around a sniper rifle in broad day light.

The Strain has more than a few issues with the story progression, but it does have some hooks that work, great action when it gets moving, and of course, a few haunting characters.

Setrakian (David Bradley) knows too much about the strigoi which makes him seem nutso, but gives him the best strategic advantage this week. He not only decides not to waste time with the power supply, but comes in handy during the climax when Ephram (Corey Stoll) and Eichorst (Richard Sammel) face off. In the two episodes I’ve seen of this series, this was the most suspenseful scene by far. Eichorst is not the Master’s pet you want stalking you around when he knows how many shots your rifle holds.

Ephram and Setrakian discuss how the game changed for him early in the episode. He’s now willing to take human life, but it is a struggle for him to subdue vampires when he’s faced with the one on one pressure. He needs some work. Maybe a little target practice. It’s probably tough to switch gears being a doctor with the completely opposite mental state you need to survive. This could work in the dialog for Ephram. I need to see that he wants to choke out his fear.

The women kill it this week when Dutch (Ruta Gedmintas) and Nikki (Nicola Correia-Damude) have a violent make up sex fight which seems semi relatable, but then Dutch decides to think about other people and go see what the gunfire is all about. Her decision sold this episode. More please. And more Feraldo getting her balls back would be great for future reference. She is a little rickety once she sees the sea of strigoi making their way in. How did they get in? Nevermind the plot holes.

Kelly (Natalie Brown) as a pissed off vamp mama trying to get her son back and still in the grip of feeling pain is so touching. The Feelers and strigoi, for all their wormy semi reptilian emotive constructs, have a sort of caring warmth, don’t they? It’s such a true to life point about classic vampires. They are still caring and sensual beings. Who wouldn’t want Eichorst as a friend while in her predicament?

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About the author

Stephanie King

I am a meticulous writer. Story is my strong suit.

I do not waste time on political "critique" or paranoid "undertones" that might have been an inspiration to a story writer, but clearly are not a main or secondary theme.

I can identify high concept, main and sub theme(s), protagonists and antagonists, secondary character roles, the turning point, the key, the antagonist's story thrust, the spine, twelve sequences, the climax, the resolution, and most importantly, the goal of any film. I am aware of the act structure which can be from three to five acts, generally.

Aristotle elaborates in his Poetics on Plato's Republic on act structure.

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