There are plenty of supernatural programs for television fans to invest in. From True Blood to The Vampire Diaries the options are each a little different from the next. Now in Season 2, NBC’s Grimm may have the most unique premise. It was show creator David Mitchell who put it best, noting Grimm is “the little weirdo that could.” However, is Grimm a program for everyone?
While there are shows that are easier to invest in if they are watched from Day 1, luckily there are plenty of shows with the ease of plot or the writing finesse to help people to jump into any episode and get involved with a new series. To determine whether a show falls in to the former or latter camp, TV Blend writer Jessica Rawden has vowed to watch episodes of shows she’s never seen before and analyze those shows in different areas to let you, the reader, know how quickly you could become a fan. This week Jessica is tackling Grimm’s Season 2 Episode 14 drama “Natural Born Wesen.”
1. Quality Of Story
Grimm’s story is extremely intricate and prior knowledge of German mythology is not only helpful, it’s basically required homework if you haven’t been watching the series for a while. On a good note, the writers are great about explaining new supernatural concepts and rules as an episode progresses, so each week should be a learning experience for everyone and not just newbies. Still, if you haven’t watched, yet, I would invest in a little knowledge of German terms like “Wesen” and “Hexenbiest” before you jump in.
The show also does a pretty good job of balancing the case of the week, friendships and relationships, and a few random side plots all at once. At its heart, the writers have put together a finely crafted procedural with plenty of added complications, including extra sideplots and fun-to-pronounce creatures from lore. I’m the type of gal who can almost invest in any sort of quirky procedural, but Grimm seems like the sort of program that even haters of procedurals could find reasons to invest in.
2. Quality Of Characters
There’s so much action going on that the characters seem to rely more on supernatural attributes than actual personality quirks to be interesting most of the time. For instance, other than being a Grimm, the show’s lead Nick is pretty much a straightforward dude with intuitive police skills who wants to get the job done himself. A slightly more unexpected character might be Nick’s buddy, Monroe, a reformed creature who seems pleasant but a little off-kilter most of the time and who can occasional show a streak of aggression. Additional characters include Nick’s love interest, Juliette, his cop partner, Hank, and his sort-of supernatural boss, Renard.
The show’s very action-oriented, and while the characters may not always be the most interesting on television, there is a chummy aura surrounding their cores and they seem to have each other’s backs. Plus, people who like details will enjoy the wealth of background knowledge the writers try to get in about each of their characters. I’d never watched the show before “Natural Born Wesen” and I feel like I’ve gotten plenty of background info on the characters already, which is pretty impressive.
3. Likelihood Of Staying On Air
Tucked away on Friday nights, NBC’s Grimm is a procedural stooped in folklore with a niche fanbase. While Grimm is too oddball to even be a massive hit for NBC, the program performs steadily, averaging around 5 million total viewers each week. That’s enough to keep the show competitive with other Friday night network fodder, like ABC’s Shark Tank and CBS’ Blue Bloods. While Grimm may not work on another night, it’s a perfect fit for the Friday audience.
Currently, the show is well into its second season, and while NBC hasn’t handed down the renewal order yet, I’m betting it’s coming. Besides, if the show gets a third season, there’s no reason it won’t get a fourth, thanks to the awesomeness that is syndication rights, although with new ways to stream television, the magic 100 episodes may be changing in the next few years. Luckily, that shouldn’t affect Grimm’s chances.
4. Necessary Investment Level
There are two parts to investing in Grimm. The first part is buying into the German version of the supernatural, learning all of the lingo and adjusting accordingly. The second is understanding the show is a procedural. It isn’t too heavy on the thinking, but there is just enough of a puzzle to keep fans going each week. That first part will take some initial work and investment, as it will for me over the next several weeks, but once you’ve invested you can stay and go as you please.
Grimm is basically a procedural with some ongoing storylines and enough myth and lore to leave viewers wanting more. So, if you miss a week it probably won’t kill you. In fact, I know it won’t kill you, unless you have some weird disease related to getting a Wider Blutbad fix every week. See, I’m learning already.
The Good, The Bad, And Whether You Should Watch
NBC’s supernatural procedural drama with a hint of comedy is certainly not for everyone. It’s a young, fresh, and action-oriented series that is steeped in some seriously strange folklore. However, that’s the show’s charm. As an added benefit, Grimm doesn’t seem to be the type of program viewers have to watch every week, but it does seem like the type of show the right audiences will want to return to every week. That’s a crafty little skill that not all TV programs have.
Overall, I found Grimm to be refreshing and the right level of weird during my first round at bat. Clearly, the show is right in my wheelhouse, but it’s a good enough program that I’d advise anyone home on a Friday night to tune in and go ahead and give the show a shot.
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