Martin Carr reviews the seventh episode of The Strain season 3…
We have come full circle this week with The Strain. There are family connections, moments of regret and a sense of interrelation between characters which somehow ties things together. Hot topics are raised, dissected and discussed within the context of ‘Collaborators’, whilst a sense of cyclical closure pervades proceedings. There are thematic elements which work away in the background underscoring personal preoccupations, helping to shed light on motivations, fractured relationships and burgeoning alliances.
In rare moments of flashback we are given context which helps to shape, illuminate and understand existing prejudice. The Strain takes on issues including Holocaust survival, personal preservation and the desire to do what is necessary. Kevin Durand’s Fet sides once more with Setrakian, while Dutch, Goodweather and Quinlan form a partnership to aid their shared goals. Palmer and Eichorst cross ideological swords once more and both actors win out in those rare dialogue scenes they share.
With the loss of an essential limb Eichorst is starting to mirror his adversary in terms of ailing health. Palmer maybe degenerating but remains bloody minded in his desire to retain control of his business interests. It is Eichorst who looks the weaker of the two even though Palmer has twenty four hour care and spends time wheelchair bound through necessity. Allegiances come from the most unlikely places and it is here that The Strain draws its most powerful comparisons.
There are measureable historical presidencies at work here which underscore the present day events, giving us context and broadening narrative boundaries. Because of this we are able to connect more deeply and things are tied together more firmly. To discuss the connections would be giving away much of what happens and these things are best discovered alone. Suffice to say that hatchets are buried, adversaries brought together and The Strain is better for it.
Elsewhere in isolated moments of nostalgia we get to visit an old yet essential location. It gave me a moment of pause as I remembered how bad that first season was and allowed for the opportunity to appreciate how much things have changed. Goodweather is now carved out of granite, Setrakian has morphed into an artillery packing pensioner with obsessional preoccupations, whilst notions of humanity are mere memories to be savoured by those who still dream at night.
Munchers may threaten to engulf everything and that balance of power may swing pendulum like between the opposing forces, but we now have front row seats at what promises to be a battle royal. A millions miles away from the moment that first plane touched down at JFK, Goodweather suited up and he opened his first can of worms. Bad pun intended.