Things Look Grimm

Science/Fantasy Monday:  Things Look Grimm

Hello all! I don’t have a ton of time on my hands today, so I’ll keep this relatively short, but I wanted to share a few thoughts on NBC’s new fairy-tale show: Grimm.  It has, of course, already received wonderful in-depth reviews last week from the marvelous Tiffany A. White on “Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday: Grimm Versus Evil” and from Kait Nolan on “Thoughts on the Grimm Plot.”  But I only got to watch the pilot and this past Friday’s episode (FINALLY) late last night (my crazy schedule just does not allow for consistent tv viewing), and I was pretty excited about it, so I thought I’d share.

For those who aren’t familiar with it, the basic premise of Grimm is this: Nick Burckhardt is a homicide detective who was raised by his Aunt Marie.  In the first episode he is starting to see strange things that he can’t explain or understand, but he tries to ignore them, while he and his partner Hank Griffin try to solve the murder of a young woman and the disappearance of a young girl (both wearing red sweatshirts, one might add).  However, is Aunt Marie, who is dying of cancer, appears to tell him something important, only to be attacked by a man carrying a scythe before she can tell Nick what she needs to.  As the episode progresses, Nick discovers that there are group of people called Grimms whose job it is to police and hunt down supernatural creatures when they go wrong.  His aunt is a Grimm, and now that she is dying, the duty (and the ability to see through disguises to the creature beneath) has passed to Nick.  To make matters worse, there is a race of creatures called Grimm Reapers whose sole purpose is to hunt down and kill all Grimms.

I won’t go into detail about the actual plot of the first episode both Tiffany’s and Kait’s reviews give detailed run-downs of the first episode instead I’ll give you some of my initial impressions of the series as a whole, based on these first two episodes.

First, the characters: Nick Burckhardt is a likable, conscientious, intelligent character played well by David Guintoli (whose not bad to look at either).  I do not foresee any problems with following this character around for a few seasons, which is good.  Sometimes even if a show is well-written, the main character is so hard to like that it becomes impossible to watch.  Also, his partner Hank, while often skeptical of some of Nick’s theories (because he doesn’t know what Nick knows) is still willing to trust his partner and go out on a limb to follow his lead.  That kind of trust is refreshing I get tired of the characters who absolutely refuse to believe their partners when things get weird, even when they’ve never given them any reason to doubt before. Even more likable than Hank, at least for me, is Monroe, played by Silas Weir Mitchell, who will become (as far as I can tell from the first two eps) Nick’s de facto sidekick in his work as a Grimm.  Monroe has a world-weary and dryly-humorous attitude that amuses me, and I’m guessing an interesting back-story to go along with it (you’ll see what I mean when you watch it).

The plot of the show looks to be your traditional new-mystery-every-week format, like any mystery/crime drama, with monsters thrown in instead of human criminals, but also with some kind of overarching plot line to tie it all together and keep the magic element at the forefront at least, that’s what I’m guessing based on some of what’s been hinted at so far.  I LOVE crime dramas, and I love a good fantasy show (like Supernatural), so this should keep me happy for at least a couple seasons, provided the writers don’t do anything incredibly stupid.

My own complaint, as with Once Upon A Time, is an obvious lack of budget to give the show the special effects it really needs/deserves.  I suspect the monsters and transformations, etc, are going to remain fairly cheap and a little cheesy throughout the season.  But I’m willing to let my imagination do some of the visual work as long as the story lines and characters stay interesting.

I’m going to leave it there. I definitely recommend this show.  So far it’s not catching my attention quite as much as Once Upon A Time did, but it’s still very good.  And we definitely need more fantasy television nowadays, so I’ll stick around for awhile and see how it turns out.  As with ABC, NBC is getting smart and has the first two episodes available to view online at their website: Grimm Season 1 Eps.  Go, and enjoy.

If you’ve seen it, please share your thoughts here! I’d love to hear what others have to say.

Side Note: This is probably the last television review I’ll be doing for a little while.  My schedule simply makes it nearly impossible for me to catch anymore of the newer shows coming out.  For instance, I haven’t seen any of American Horror Story, which is sad to me because it looks absolutely fascinating.  But oh well…  Also, Wednesday posts may be a bit sporadic for awhile, as I am nearing the end of the semester and things are CRAZY.  Just to give you a heads-up.

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10 thoughts on “Things Look Grimm

  1. All I really want, is for Nick to show up on Monroe’s doorstep at 6:30 the next morning with a giftbasket full of bagels.

    That aside, that was pretty fun to watch. 😄
    I had seen previews for Once for a while now and actually got kinda excited about it, and had been meaning to watch when it started, and then got so busy the last couple weekends that I just hadn’t had the chance. So thank you for reminding me to go and watch it a few nights ago. ^^
    And I don’t know that I had heard of Grimm (maybe saw a poster or something but hadn’t really looked into it), so I’m glad you recommended.

    I do think I still like Once better. Something about Once just completely endeared me to all the characters from the get-go. And I love the whole “town trapped in time” bit. Somehow it wasn’t what i was expecting from the previews that I saw, but in a good way. And the special effects didn’t bother me too much. Yeah, they weren’t awe-inspiring, but still not bad at all compared to a number of other movies and such that I absolutely love too.

    Grimm…well…I’m with you. I like Monroe. Lots. ^^
    The plot itself feels a bit more typical “hunter” type plot…typical at least in the world of fantasy/supernatural stories. But I definitely agree with your points about the characters. It’s refreshing to see intelligent, sensible, trustworthy leads once in a while. Even the police chief/whatever his position is, I can buy. He’s realistic enough in being practical but not some big-bad-bureaucratic annoyance. And it makes sense, because if you’re going to make the main conflict the kind of external conflict that this one is, you really don’t need a lot of strife between the central core of characters. Sure, probably some at some point, but not the ridiculous, constant, forced every single episode kinda stuff. And it definitely seems like there’s a lot more going on in this world that’ll be interesting to find out more about. The Grimms and Reapers and all of that. And I kinda hope they vary more eventually with the monsters and they’re not all just animal-associated creatures that can go uglyfacemode whenever the audience needs to jump in their seats a little. But there’s a lot of potential with the different fairy tales out there, and two episodes is really still too early to say about that. ^^;;

    All-in-all, on the two, the pilot for Once was, I think, just astounding. It was so very “we’ll just scratch the surface, but there’s so much more, and it begins…now.” Grimm’s pilot was more “here’s the characters, here’s the setup, here’s the formula we’re going to use…hope you like it.” And generally, I like the shows that have more cliffhangers and twists constantly being unraveled as more show up and are more obvious pieces of one big continuing story (like Once) over the more episodic shows (like Grimm). Still like both, but that’s more of a personal preference. Not that Once isn’t at least somewhat episodic…but from the first few episodes anyway, it definitely seems less-so. And I think, maybe looking at it from another angle – I like Once for what it already is, even in the first three episodes. I like Grimm for what it has the potential to become.

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    • Yep, I definitely enjoy it. Though I’m still waiting around for stronger character development, especially for Nick. He’s not all that interesting, and unless the writing gets stronger soon, I’m not sure the show is going to last all that long.

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