With Magnus (Amanda Tapping) back at the helm, we re-join the Sanctuary in the middle of what appears to be disturbing news, once again involving the UN. This time the upcoming trouble goes by the name “Addison”, of the UN Security Council and his team of supposed genius!
Before I review “Untouchable”, included below is the full episode courtesy of Syfy via Hulu for you to enjoy in the United States. Sanctuary season four begins in Australia on November 04, 2011 and soon in the United Kingdom too. Enjoy!
In the main lobby Magnus, Will (Robin Dunne), Henry (Ryan Robbins) and Biggie (Chris Heyerdahl) congregate to discuss their issues with the UN arriving to inspect Sanctuary operations, the biggest being security, for obvious reasons. Although why the United Nations did not go with the “tea with Magnus, photo op with the mermaid” option is beyond us!
Putting the final plans into place for the visit is always going to be pre-emptive for this lot, and lo and behold, the doorbell rings an hour early.
The onset of Henry’s panic is quick, he’s determined no-one could get through his defences. Until, that is, he finds the code used to access the Sanctuary is his own. The real question now, of course, is: Who’s behind door number 1?.
Luckily for the team, the unannounced arrival is only Erika (Pauline Egan), Henry’s girlfriend who left the Sanctuary for London at the end of last season. Her return brings about exciting news for the Sanctuary family – once Henry stops blathering away – there’s soon to be an addition in the form of a little HAP.
After the credits, we are transported to Jakarta, Indonesia via flashback and a busy marketplace where it appears Magnus and Will are in the process of hunting and capturing another abnormal – this one presumed to be of Hollow Earth origins.
This is confirmed by present day Henry as he recaps the story to Erika in his lab, along with Magnus’ suspicion that the psychic powers possessed by this abnormal was the cause of the invasion. With Erika up to speed and a cute future-parents conversation between the two out of the way, it’s time to meet Addison (Brian Markinson).
From the outset, his character is immediately dislikeable with both the insults aimed at the Sanctuary and the arrogant name-dropping. Along with his team, collectively known as “The Untouchables”, Addison maintains an air of pompousness as Magnus and Will show him around the Sanctuary, doing their utmost to maintain a calm, composed and professional image despite being lumped with the UN’s egotistical department before giving as good as they get and calling Addison on his tactics.
Back in the lab, “The Untouchables” continue with their thinly veiled insults and Erika responds in kind, her blunt retaliations culminating in tackling Addison to the wall whilst being half transformed. One up for the Sanctuary, it seems.
Erika’s retaliation is not without cause though, it appears that there was a side-effect of the lychen medication that affects fertility. Rest assured though, baby Foss is absolutely fine and Erika simply needs to stay in isolation with Henry by her side, whilst Magnus and Will supervise the “geek squad”.
In yet another part of the Sanctuary, Magnus, Will and Biggie are meeting again to complain about the UN invasion from Will’s lament that they’re settling in too well right down to Biggie’s disgust that they asked for coffee!
The scene skips again to Magnus’ office and a Ping-Pong match between Addison’s criticisms of the Sanctuary’s handling of the invasion to Will’s correction that at least the Sanctuary did something and stopped the majority of the invasion from becoming a real threat, then back to Addison again.
All the while Magnus sits, waiting for the opportune moment to intervene and when she does, has no qualms about setting Addison straight about the existence of an abnormal with psychic powers that can cover long distances.
Cue the flashback to Jakarta, and Magnus and Will’s meeting with their informant who directs them to their abnormal. With headphones in and music playing, so as to disrupt any psychic signals being sent, they set off at a discreet pace and observe the abnormal, waiting for the moment to strike. All was going to plan, an anomaly in itself, until a team of armed combatants burst onto the scene, weapons at the ready.
Before anyone knew what was really happening, the new team were opening fire on each other and the target was fleeing the scene. Back in the present, Will is quick to work out that Addison sent those men to their deaths, only for the man to admit it in such a calm and uncaring manner. Definitely not helping his likeability.
In the lab, Henry and Cass (Mig Macario) are working together on the Sanctuary systems. Showing their lack of familiarity with the Sanctuary, Cass requests blueprints for a number of items that Henry can’t help her with because they were invented in the heat of the moment by Henry and other persons not around at the moment. Erika is however, and Henry responds to a panicked text only to find that her arm has transformed to its werewolf state and she can’t change it back. It seems that the original side effects of the lychen medication are having further reaching consequences on Erika.
Returning to the meeting in Magnus’ lab, it’s not surprise that Addison quickly pits the events in Jakarta as a ‘you vs. us’ venture. It doesn’t gain him any advantages though, as Magnus and Will have no problem seeing through his façade to the fact that he wanted the abnormal to hold global control and tracked them in order to do so and was perfectly happy to kill the abnormal rather than let it fall into the Sanctuary’s hands.
Addison appears to still have his trump card though, and puts it all on the table by revealing autopsy findings that show the abnormal they’d been chasing to have no abnormal brain functions, thereby ruling out the possibility of it having control of the Hollow Earth invasion.
After the break, Henry and Biggie are arguing over whose fault it is that Erika has escaped isolation, until Henry finds her in the lab writing a new algorithm for the system. Meanwhile, Magnus is less than impressed with the suggestion of separate interviews to find out what happened in Jakarta. She does, however, play along with Addison’s quest to remind him that she’s been doing her job 120 years and his pathologist wouldn’t know what to look for. Not to be intimidated though, Addison simply chooses to remind her that he’s the one who can bankrupt the Sanctuary if he isn’t satisfied.
Magnus appears to rethink her tactics, but it is Will who provides a flashback to Jakarta to show Addison that they knew during the fire fight that the abnormal was Wahid. Now switching back between the memories of Magnus and Will, it becomes clear that they were covering their tracks and hiding Wahid’s identity from the UN, in the hope that they could find him again before anyone else did, especially someone like Addison who would use the psychic powers for the wrong reasons.
Continuing with the UN’s inspection of the Sanctuary systems, Cass is determined to keep Henry with her in the lab rather than allow him to be with Erika. In doing so, she once again shows lack of awareness about the Sanctuary’s roots and demands Henry be serious when he can’t explain a device to her because it was invented by Nikola Tesla, before then asking that Tesla drop some patents in as soon as possible.
You’d think the UN would brief any teams visiting the Sanctuary, but this oversight only makes their visit look ever more like a set-up. In the isolation room’s lab, Erika is unsuccessfully attempting to get information on Henry’s past out of Biggie. Thankfully, a distraction comes in the form of her new algorithm picking up on something. Yet another sign that perhaps the UN’s intentions aren’t quite so golden.
Back to Addison’s interrogation of Will though, and he’s having a hard time trash talking Magnus when Will stands up for her at every turn. Addison has yet another card to play though, pitching Will ‘the human’ against Magnus ‘the abnormal’ and taunting him with details of his past.
Luckily for the Sanctuary, Erika’s algorithm seems to have saved the day as the UN were trying to hack Sanctuary firewalls whilst Cass was distracting Henry. Surely these organisations would have learnt how hard it is to fool the Sanctuary by now, but it seems it’s a long lesson to learn. In light of this, Henry’s all fired up and ready to kick them out, but from the look in Magnus’ eye, she has other plans that involve tipping things in her favour first.
Whilst Magnus is left to her scheming, Addison has Will cornered in the elevator and is trying to talk him into taking over as head of the Sanctuary in order to keep their government funding. Will appears to have given up the ghost and returns to the flashback of Jakarta and Magnus’ interaction with Wahid, including her offer to return him home to Hollow Earth.
The consequences of this decision lead to a confrontation between Magnus and Will in her office, with the rest of the team, plus Addison, looking on. Will’s pleas that they needed to cooperate are met only by accusations that he just wants the reigns to the Sanctuary. They’re interrupted by Addison laying down an ultimatum and declaring himself their new boss, something which does not sit well with the team.
It comes as no surprise though that Magnus turns down his ultimatum and kicks them out whilst laying down one of her own – stay away from the Sanctuary or be eaten. One of the more creative threats of this world. The whole ordeal seems to have flummoxed Henry though, especially when Magnus proclaims it to have gone well and Will expresses his agreement. It all suddenly comes to light that the whole episode was a ruse to make the world’s governments think it was their decision to break off ties with the Sanctuary when all along, it was a decision Magnus had made and put into place during her 113 year hiatus.
It also happens that they did capture the Wahid and he was sedated and safely in the Sanctuary throughout the episode.
On a happier note though, Magnus has found a way for Erika’s body to tolerate the pregnancy by slowing the gestation period to 22 months – a scary thought for most women! However, along with this miracle treatment, Magnus has a suggestion for Henry. The Sanctuary is no place to raise a family and the time will come when he must think of moving his family and leaving the Sanctuary.
The final scene of this episode leaves us on a cliff-hanger though – Magnus’ promise that there are changes ahead that the world isn’t ready for has reeled us in, hook, line and sinker. The rest of this series promises to continue on the same path it’s started on, which can mean only one thing: we’re in for a hell of a ride, but an amazing one all the same.
Stay tuned for next week’s episode of Sanctuary “Monsoon” because “If you’re going to hold people hostage, make sure one of them is not named Helen Magnus!”
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Tune in again soon for more about my journey to the MCM Exposition convention this weekend were Kenn arranged press access with the convention officials! So I suggest that you keep an eye out for the WormholeRiders News Agency detailed reports we will be bringing you in the future too!
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Comment on “Sanctuary: “Untouchable” – “From Now On, We Make Our Own Rules””
Thank you for a delightfully insightful review of “Untouchable”. I really like teh way you alternate the images left, right, center full size. It is a style I have used myself and it is very aesthetically pleasing.
Your analysis and thoughts are “right on” as always! Thank you.
PS: Have a great time at MCM this weekend! 🙂
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