Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Lost Girl 'In Memoriam' review: My death was greatly exaggerated

"All that's kept me alive is my hate."

The season four premiere of Lost Girl made the case for a show headlined by Ksenia Solo — and it exceeded expectations. Due to a real life pregnancy, Anna Silk had to sit out of the major duties for the premiere (and perhaps the next episode, too), and while Bo was greatly missed, I can't lie and say that I wasn't at all entertained by this episode. In fact, I was quite entertained by this episode. If Lost Girl can keep up the energy from this premiere, it may have a home run season. I don't think an episode has ever felt more assured, weaving all elements of the series together quite naturally.

And did you see that cinematography? I could go on and on about that aspect. But I won't indulge in the geekiness.

The main aspect of this episode is one that could have been quite a contrivance: It turns out everyone has a case of amnesia, thanks to the MacGuffin, but on Lost Girl, it works like gangbusters. One of my favorite episodes is when everyone's bodies gets switched. Being shameless about its camp is what Lost Girl does best sometimes. (Consider the performance by George Takei as a snake who over-pronounced "S" sounds and then died while saying, "Oh, my.")

Perhaps the reason I wasn't bothered by this version of our Lost Girl universe is that it reinforced everything that makes Lost Girl good. A version of this show without Bo is one where our two leads (Kenzi and Dyson) would be together for no other reason than the fact that they're the two leads. It's a show where we'd have to endure a love triangle that we've seen a dozen times: a good-looking woman is struggling between two good-looking guys. With Bo in the picture, everything is much more compelling. This is the show proving to us that the relationship these two women share (Kenzi and Bo) is far more interesting and important than the one Kenzi would have to rely on by default without Bo in the picture—either romantically involved with Dyson or romantically involved with Hale. Not only does Bo provide that all-important relationship with her best friend, but she also makes way for Kenzi and Hale's relationship to be more complex than sexual frustration (even if that makes for interesting scenes). Now we need to know where Bo is and why everyone's memories were wiped. I'm surprised at how well it could pull off the real-life reason for Bo's absence, as well as the reason it makes sense story-wise.

Elsewhere, it appears that Kenzi is kind of human with fae skin wrapped around her. And her ability is… making it the Fourth of July? We're still iffy on that concept. This may be different for everyone who didn't binge-watch, but I think it's fascinating how slow they've burned this story. Somehow, I'd expect Lost Girl to show its hand right away with this, but it's been slowly cluing us in. We know that Kenzi definitely wanted to be fae in our non-amnesia universe because she had an inferiority complex. And once again, I feel as though the amnesia plot served to underscore how much more interesting that is than Kenzi needing it to kick butt and pay rent. That said, it did feel as though Kenzi is still battling with wanting to remain human (especially what that means for her morality, well, the little she thinks she has over the fae) but allured by her possible fae abilities to fight among the best of them. I'm still quite intrigued by this.

That's about the meat of this episode. Obviously, the show was great in its other beats. Can we talk about that dance? Man, that was great stuff! It appears Aife still holds a grudge. (Can you blame the girl?) But more importantly, what was with the 0.3 seconds of Lauren, who appears she's Anne'd herself (Buffy style) as she has runaway from the Light and is masquerading as a waitress named Amber? And, of course, I'm grateful for Vex and lines like, "I love what you're doing with your mascara."

Basically, if you think Lost Girl would lose steam in season four, this premiere did everything to prove otherwise.

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