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'The Strain': Season 2 report card

FX’s The Strain has come to an end after an action-packed episode that led to two deaths and a lot of fighting over the Occido Lumen. With the season finale fresh in our minds, let’s grade the character story arcs this season—from the badass introduction of Quinlan to the noticeably absent Master.

Ephraim Goodweather: C
Oh, Eph, we really wanted to like you more this season … but, nope. He had a few redeeming moments, but we’re finding it really hard to care about his character. His weird little trip to D.C. where he threw someone off a train and then snogged a random woman, before crying over her death like they had been together for years, didn’t exactly rank him any higher on our love list. His character didn’t experience any real growth, and while he and Nora found a virus in the beginning of the season, nothing ever came to fruition with it. We’ll have to wait until next season to find out if it can be weaponized.

The Master: D
Wait, he’s the big-bad of the show, right? The season started out with a look into the history of the most recent Master. Besides a quick worm transfer to Gabriel, and a “yo mama” joke with Quinlan, we really didn’t see much of him. Sure, Eichhorst handles a lot for him, but we were pretty shocked we didn’t get more Master action, since he is the one pulling all the strings. What the hell does he even do all day? Why did we not learn anything about his ultimate plan this season?

Dutch Velders and Vasiliy Fet: A
Dutch and Fet get an “A” from us because they made us feel something this season, and the reintroduction of Nikki was a smart move on the show’s part. It would have gotten dull to watch a normal relationship progress between Fet and Dutch. Plus, seeing Fet so hurt over Dutch and Nikki’s romance showed us a side of him we hadn’t seen before and made him even more lovable. Even though we’re rooting for Dutch and Fet to end up together, it was easy for the audience to understand where Dutch was coming from in her struggle with the love triangle.

Thomas Eichhorst: A
Eichhorst is such a badass character, and the actor who plays him, Richard Sammel, is a freaking genius. We got a little peek into his past with a flashback at the end of the season that helped us understand him a little more—not forgive, just understand. We thought for sure he was a goner in the season finale, but we’re excited to see what else is in store for this character next season.

Quinlan: A+
Quinlan is hands down the most exciting this to happen to the show since it started. He represents what The Strain is all about. Fans instantly fell in love with this character, and for good reason. Quinlan’s introduction on the show = badass. His flashback sequence = badass. All of his fight scenes = badass. His costume and makeup = badass.

Gus Elizalde: C
Nothing was more disappointing this season than Gus’ storyline. He and Fet are the two characters we would have full-on mental breakdowns over if they were killed off. Gus has hilarious lines, and Miguel Gomez plays the character so well. His storyline with the Silver Angel and the Guptas seemed random and forced. He deserved better. Teaming up with Quinlan in the end and kicking ass is what we should have been seeing from him all season long.

Kelly and Zack Goodweather: B
Everything started out great with the Kelly storyline. The Feelers were creepy, and her quest to get Zack back was logical and suspenseful. What wasn’t logical? The fact that in the end, Zack just went with Kelly willingly and left Nora to die [insert giant eye roll].

Abraham Setrakian: C
There was simply not enough from our favorite sword-wielding, silver-haired hero. We did learn he’s been keeping himself fresh with some worm juice, which was a nice twist, but the search for the Occido Lumen was a drag at times. The flashbacks were just okay, and the fact that his search for the ancient book seemed to go on forever made it feel unimportant. Setrakian is another character who deserved better scenes this season.

Eldritch Palmer and Coco: B
While Coco and Palmer’s relationship was a bit creepy and random, and Eldritch is certainly a royal asshole, we still can’t help but enjoy his storyline. Once we realized that his and Coco’s feelings for each other were genuine, it made it easier to feel for the both of them. Plus, hate him or love him, Eldritch plays an essential role in the story. Also, don’t judge us, but we kind of loved Coco (RIP).

Season 2 overall grade: B
There were some pretty badass moments in season 2, and each episode kept us hooked. They pulled the character storylines together, which was much appreciated, and the introduction of Justine Feraldo was a big plus in our book. Episodes like “The Battle for Red Hook” and “The Born” were season high points.

The season’s biggest downfalls: The unrealistic response of the citizens of New York/government/media/everyone in the world, no huge character development, and slow plot progression. Here’s something to look forward to, though: Executive Producer Chuck Hogan said in an interview with TVLine that because of a 10-episode season three, “… the show is going to be different—not radically different, but we are going to be advancing the story faster.” Yay!

Despite any criticism, there’s no question that we’ll be tuning in for the third season. There’s just something about the show that keeps us coming back for more.


xoxo,

TeamTSD (Liz and Lindi)

The Strain returns to FX in 2016.

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

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