EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

'Hemlock Grove' recap: A new girl in town

Season 2 | Episode 2 | “Gone Sis” | Released July 11, 2014

Does a horror-based television show have to be frightening all the time in order to be effective storytelling? According to Hemlock Grove, the answer is no. Instead of giving us chills, the second episode of the new season is a quiet and meditative character piece that is surprisingly effective. Not only are formerly clunky characters rehabilitated, but the lead characters also acquire some needed nuance.

But before we jump into the recap, the creative team behind this show deserves praise for the way it weaves in subtle homages to the great horror films. This episode in particular has so many references to the horror film Psycho that there is no way these moments are accidental. From the bird motif to the taxidermy to the shower peeping to that motel sign, it is fitting that this quieter episode evokes moments from Hitchcock’s character-driven classic.

The episode opens at a random, seedy motel. Still struggling with his blood hunger, Roman (Bill Skarsgard) arrives and quickly procures a prostitute. As she strips and reveals a series of bruises given to her by her boyfriend-pimp, Roman decides there may be a more appropriate buffet upon which to feast. Enter the boyfriend-pimp, who is “all about customer service” and wants to offer up another woman from his stable in order to appease his disgruntled customer. Roman, however, has other ideas and attacks the man by ripping into his throat and drinking his blood. The juxtaposition of Roman’s assault and the explicit sexuality coming from a porn video playing in the background elevates the scene from graphic to downright disturbing. It is also a subtle comment on the connection between porn and violence that is audacious, to say the least, especially for the horror genre.

Hemlock Grove newcomer Miranda (Madeline Brewer) is running from an old boyfriend and ignoring his calls, when a truck appears and begins ramming her car for no apparent reason. A chase ensues and Miranda is able to escape. But as soon as she switches the station from the aggressive punk music that has been the soundtrack to this encounter to tranquil classical music, any horror fan worth their salt knows something is about to go down. And it does, in the form of the ghost truck crashing into her.

Seemingly none the worse for wear, save for a bleeding head wound, Miranda shows up on the doorstep of Roman, who has just vomited a large portion of his dinner. My guess is that lowlife pimp blood doesn’t exactly settle well in a discerning upir’s stomach. The two share an awkward exchange before Roman decides to play host to Miranda.

Meanwhile, back at the rehabilitation solarium, Olivia is tending to the plants when a bird flies into the glass and dies. This seems to trouble the formerly unflappable Olivia and hints that her mental state may be more in need of rehabilitation than her body. We get a bit more insight into Olivia’s condition when Dr. Pryce reveals that the medication he is giving Olivia will increase her empathy substantially. As you’d expect, the cunning Olivia does not receive this news well, but it does inspire her to reveal herself to Roman, which she does by surprising him at work. The two have a tense reunion that ends with Roman devastating his mother by telling her that he would give anything not to be her son. Olivia tells her son that his desire to feed will only increase, and that she prays he comes to her before he does something from which he will be unable to recover.

Andreas, he of the funeral kitchen sex with Destiny, arrives in Hemlock Grove and takes up residence with Peter and Destiny. While Destiny is thrilled to see her paramour, Peter’s attention is elsewhere. Not only is he turned away from visiting Lynda at the prison, but his new, taxidermy-loving boss reprimands him for tardiness. Things begin to perk up for our sometime-werewolf when he meets Miranda and the two strike up a quick friendship.

Across town, Norman (Dougray Scott) has fallen into the bottle over the death of his daughter, Letha. Marie (Laurie Fortier) visits him and reveals that she is unable to move on from Letha’s passing and is planning on suing Godfrey Industries for wrongful death. Although Norman is concerned that would mean putting Letha’s memory on trial, he flashes back to the night of Letha’s death and decides to join his ex-wife’s crusade. Norman pays a visit to Dr. Pryce and warns that he and Marie will be filing a wrongful death suit and to expect a  storm of subpoenas. Although Dr. Pryce appears to be genuinely sorry about Letha’s death, Norman remains unmoved and insists that he will get to the bottom of what is happening in the White Tower, which, from the variety of organs on display, is a whole lot.

Although warned by Peter to be careful of Roman, Miranda opts to stay with Roman while she waits for her car to be repaired. The two talk about their dead fathers over dinner and then visit Beautiful Dreamer, Roman’s new thoroughbred horse, in the stables. Roman’s plan to either feed off of Miranda or to seduce her—it’s unclear which objective he has in mind—is quickly extinguished when Miranda excuses herself to go to bed. From the shadows, Roman watches as Miranda takes a shower, her bird tattoos on clear display.

Things have gone from bad to worse for Peter, who is now suffering from visions of masks, broken dolls, snakes and a Gone Sis sign. He enlists Destiny’s help in determining what the visions mean. As Destiny starts to channel Peter’s dreams, she hallucinates black, snakelike swirls making their way up from the water and into her body. As she starts to convulse, Peter is forced to perform CPR. Although Destiny is visibly shaken by what happened and demands Peter forget his visions, Andreas sees a drawing of Peter’s and instantly recognizes Gone Sis as the Wagoner Oasis, a place frequented by horny truckers.

The episode closes with Roman feasting on his prized thoroughbred, Peter arriving at the Wagoner Oasis, and a drunken man being choked to death by two men in silver masks who were in the middle of a ritual when interrupted. The masks the two men are wearing are the same ones from Peter’s visions.

Comments, Gripes & Observations

  • Does anyone have any guesses as to what or who is the source material for Olivia’s treatments?
  • Mark down this day, ya’ll. I finally see a purpose for Norman’s character!
  • I loved Olivia’s story about Roman as a child asking if she had blood on her hands, and her response that it was red frosting. It was so in keeping with the characters.
  • What does everyone think about Miranda? Anyone else get the sense that her arrival to Hemlock Grove may not have been accidental?
  • Loved the scene between the nanny and Roman. She’s right. They really are all cursed.

Hemlock Grove can be viewed on Netflix.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

You May Like