Welcome back to the wonderfully altered world of Discover Haven!
Superbly directed by Jeff Renfroe (recently from The Colony and Being Human) and written by entertainment industry veteran Matt McGuinness, “Countdown” is THE pivotal episode in the first half of season four that many of us expected it to be.
Subsequent to learning last episode that Lexie IS Audrey (Emily Rose), but with a fascinating twist and a lovely nose ring too, admirers of Haven were overjoyed that Duke (Eric Balfour) was confided in by Audrey that it really was her!
In the series past, Audrey either did not remember her past identities in the town, or, she had only clues, glimmers, dreams of what she had been that needed to be fleshed out in the story arcs of the first three seasons.
Nose ringed Lexie not only remembers her life as Audrey, she is capable of switching personalities at will. This turns out to be a mighty handy capability to help maintain her cover story so that The Guard does not kill her in an attempt to end The Troubles.
This factor of Lexie remembering Audrey must somehow be related to what happened to the wormhole bar barn with Audrey/Lexie escaping before the standard twenty-seven year “Haven Curse” cycle had completely elapsed.
Is the wormhole barn actually destroyed? Or did the barn materialize in another timeline following its standard tendency to appear and disappear seemingly at will? This reviewer thinks it is not destroyed and will return again in a future episode of the series, perhaps in season four.
Instead what has happened was the normal sequence of the twenty-seven years, with the exception that Lexie/Audrey escaped with William’s (Colin Ferguson) urging, the barn has moved to another space and time outside the current reality.
And just who in the heck is William? Is he The Colorado Kid as I have theorized? Or is William simply a male version of Audrey replete with cross dressing and wig wearing tendencies?
We shall soon find out since the ninth episode of season four, entitled “William”, airs on November 08, 2013 in a little over two weeks on Syfy! It will be mind blowing I am sure!
“Countdown” will bring tragedy and death to Jordan McKee (Kate Kelton) of The Guard and unleash a known set of The Troubles for Wade Crocker (Christian Camargo) who will commit an unspeakable act that follows in the Crocker “Troubled” historical lineage in a tour de force set of performances by both of these talented supporting actors.
An interesting, and good Public Service Announcement (PSA) is incorporated into this week’s episode. How many of us have been driving or walking down the street, expressway, freeway or sidewalk only to see some person keying their mobile device obviously texting and head straight for us oblivious to the world? How many of us have swerved to avoid such maniacs? (raises my hand … several times!).
In “Countdown” one of the victims is killed as a result of such activity. The episode exudes a digital quality as a result with one of The Troubled producing a death countdown on every electronic device of people he does not like. Each encounter results in a weird form of death!
Throughout the episode, the “Countdown” will be displayed that could affect the lives of several citizens, including none other than Nathan Wournos (Lucas Bryant) who will be threatened by the “Countdown” phenomena which leads to being frozen to death… instantly when the “Countdown” reaches ZERO!
Therefore the episode begins when a Haven resident who had been at the local travel agency planning a vacation is literally frozen to death while simply looking at his cell phone in front of the travel office! A nice scene occurs with the victim ending up face down on the pavement bouncing off the sidewalk like a chopped down tree!
You know Duke and Audrey, the coffee mugs are really filled with Bailey’s Irish Creme liquor! The two are chatting at breakfast time about what they are going to do to keep the secret that Lexie actually remembers she is Audrey.
Nathan had desired to to bring Lexie/Audrey in an attempt to help her restore her memory (that she already has, but he does not yet realize).
Lexie/Audrey opts out for a good reason after her morning chat with Duke.
However, Duke has advised Lexie/Audrey to steer clear of Nathan. So “Lexie” excuses herself from Nathan to avoid being identified by Nathan as Audrey, for now. Indicating that she has some paperwork to fill out at the Haven Police Station, Nathan and Duke head out.
With Lexie/Audrey safely out of the way, Duke offers to help Nathan find out about The Troubles of the frozen body mystery in town. As they arrive at the crime scene, Duke and Nathan seem to know the man named Seth Hughes (Ira Henderson).
Actually the Gloria character is not “new” but is to us. Gloria is introduced that she is “coming out of mothballs” having worked for Nathan’s father (Nicholas Campbell) before his own untimely death.
The former M.E., Doctor Lucassi (Christopher Shore) is said to have “split in the middle of the night and took the neighbors cats with him!”.
Before continuing my analysis, another kudo for the creators and screenwriter; One of the best parts of the series each season are the one liners of humor and levity that are deftly blended into the story. “Countdown” is no different when Medical Examiner Gloria states;
“Okay, Seth Hughes, 25. Running errands, walks out of a bakery with a dozen muffins, and… gets rigor mortis. Yes, normally that happens after death. But in Haven, look at that! It’s like the actin and myosin in his cells went bonkers.”
Duke chimes in with an incredulous look on his face; “Bonkers?”,
“Yes” says Gloria “It’s a medical term”.
Gloria also related (before examining the frozen corpse), that she returned to Haven after “Club Med” “they regretted the all you can drink option!” which gets a smirk from Nathan and Duke, as well as this reviewer.
Gloria looks like she could pack a few “belts” away, and says she bought “weed” from Duke too, so very funny stuff from Gloria! I hope your appearance is not a “one off” and we get to see more of you in the future of the series!
Concerned they made need help, Nathan calls for backup. A new Haven Police officer arrives, but will not be with the Haven Police Department very long. Officer Tatum (Henrick Strait-Hinnerichsen), who we have not seen previously, arrives quickly.
After studying the crime scene, Rafferty, Duke and Nathan now believe the victim’s cell phone had something to do with the death because he is clutching and was apparently staring at the device when he froze hard as a rock!
We learn from Rafferty that the cell phone, or something coming digital emanating from it causes the spontaneous death syndrome.
Haven now has one less citizen when Officer Tatum looks at the cell phone. He is frozen to death on the spot! Later, Nathan is tipped off about Audrey remembering when she slips and utters Officer Tatum’s name, something Lexie would not have known about.
This reviewer was pleased the Haven police officer called was not “Stan the Cop” (Glen Lefchak) who had suffered a frozen death like Officer Tatum. Stan has been a familiar face adding stability to Haven as a character who has appeared in the series since the “Ain’t No Sunshine” episode in August 2010 and last seen in this season’s second episode entitled “Survivors”.
To digress a bit on that point; I theorized that “Haven, Maine” with such a small population of approximately 355 persons as of the 2010 United States Census, and 381 as of the 2000 census, that more than 26 people have been killed to accurately relate “Haven” to “Haven, Maine”, leaving few left to become victims of The Troubles.
However, with the wormhole barn always in the mix, this reviewer suspects that The Colorado Kid is “salting” or “seeding” the fictional town of “Haven, Maine” with new people upon occasion to keep the town’s population up to snuff, in effect making things realistic and changing memories of others in the process. This accounts for the new Officer Tatum, and other characters that come and go making for a fun science fiction supernatural series!
By seducing and manipulating Wade, Nathan’s brother, Jordan is convinced she can get Wade to kill Audrey and Nathan by promising Wade that he can become part of the real power structure in Haven, The Guard.
Playing with fire she will be unable to control, Jordan gets Wade’s unqualified attention. What Jordan does not realize is that Wade may simply be attracted to her physical beauty.
During the seduction, Jordan craftily persuades Wade to hide miniature remote control cameras in the Haven Police Department.
The cameras turn out to be a rather good idea for Jordan as Wade and Jordan overhear Lexie admitting that she really is Audrey. Yikes! The secret is now in the hands of one of The Guards most influential people!
Based on the video snooping, Jordan thinks she can restore peace, and ultimately order to Haven to put an end to The Troubles once and for all. Jordan in her glee at figuring it out, shares the information with Vince Teagues (Richard Donat). This turns out to be a huge mistake. Vince deduces what Jordan is planning and attempts to stop her. Jordan uses her built-in Tazer electrical shocking power and knocks Vince out tying him up in a nearby barn.
In the process we learn a bit of back story on Vince and the mistake he made in the past with Simon Crocker (Tahmoh Penikett), which lead to similar problems during the Lucy Ripley era. What we still do not know as of “Countdown” is Vince is one of The Troubled or not.
Always sharp tempered Jordan loses control in a fit of anger when Vince does not endorse her plan. Instead she holds Vince captive, pursuing her scheme to utilize the Crocker family Trouble of absorbing blood with The Troubles to use Wade as an assassin to kill Audrey and Nathan and return peace and stability to Haven.
This reviewer suspected that Wade and his family curse would be used by The Guard to try and cleanse Haven of The Troubles. I also suspected that Jordan would be killed off soon as I discussed with Kate Kelton before her recent WHR You Decide interview the weekend before “Countdown”.
Only stating my theory, and Kate Kelton being the professional that she is, could not comment, nor did I ask such pointed questions in the spirit of ethical behavior.
What I did not expect was for Jordan’s demise to come so quickly in “Countdown”. Looking back now, we had offered a range of dates to Ms. Kelton and she strategically selected the October 13, 2013 date and for good reason. She knew that Jordan was about to (sniff, sniff) die in “Countdown”.
In the interim, Duke, Nathan and Audrey figure out that it is Peter Krebs (Jason Jazrawy) the electronics repair shop owner who is the person who is killing the people by sending a digital signal texts that causes them to see an electronic digital countdown shortly before they freeze to death.
Peter Krebs uses his version of The Troubles to stop anyone who gets in his way. Unfortunately, Nathan is that person, so Krebs turns The Trouble loose on him and starts the countdown!
Nathan then also starts to see the countdown timer himself. The Haven “good guy” team struggles against the seemingly inevitable circumstances to find Peter Krebs and deactivate his Trouble.
As with many of the Troubles in Haven, Peter’s version becomes manifest as the result of emotional distress when he thinks others are responsible for his inability to ask a woman he likes out on a date, this subsequent to a robbery at his store which sent him over the top to The Troubles.
With our heroes nudging Peter’s lack of confidence along, Nathan’s countdown timer turning him into a stone cold bed of roses vanishes to the relief of Duke and Audrey!
Of course our main hero character, Nathan, has to live and survives the outcome. Tragically Jordan will not survive the episode (passes tissues to all the Jordan fans!). As Wade begins to experience his version of The Trouble, and the power that it brings, he does not want it to end!
In a fit of lust for power, remembering the feeling, like a narcotic when he stabbed Peter, Wade stabs Jordan multiple times as she bleeds out to death. The feeling of the surge of The Troubles power for Wade means certain TROUBLE in the future!
And Wade will assume the role of the most hated character that Jordan McKee once was in Haven?
At the episodes conclusion, can everyone still alive count their blessings, and light a candle for the demise of one of the series most vibrant supporting actors; Kate Kelton.
Therefore Nathan and Audrey are safe from being killed by The Guard in their attempts to end the curse for the time being.
Another character is not going to be so lucky! Jordan McKee Queen of The Guard, will be murdered by evil blood thirsty Wade Crocker!
Jordan slashed by Wade in the vehicle, also kept quiet about the belief that if Audrey is killed The Troubles in Haven would cease to exist. Sadly, Jordan told Vince she was planning on leaving town when she kidnapped him. Translation to screen writing?
No one in Haven will even miss the fact that Jordan was murdered by the maniacal, power mad, Wade Crocker who feasted on here blood!
For this reviewer, I was quite sad to see the “Shotgun Packing” Jordan character leave the series. Those of us with experience in the entertainment business know that supporting characters are usually killed off once their purpose has been served. Few supporting characters seldom last longer that two full seasons.
However, this is a supernatural science fiction thriller series and as such, it is possible that Jordan could return via flashbacks, or by some mystical power of the wormhole barn that threw Duke six months into the future, it is also possible that Haven history could be reset to a time before Jordan is killed. I hope so!
In any event, this episode clearly deserves an “A PLUS” with strong performances by all cast members in general, and Kate Kelton and Christian Camargo in specific. Both delivered top notch performances that make “Countdown” a literal tear-jerker and nail biter to the very end! Bravo!
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