The Gates Watch: Identity Crisis

Nick Monohan may be a decent guy… but he’s sure a lousy cop.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m all for cutting the guy some slack. He may break into people’s homes without a search warrant every now and then, or accuse people without any proof, but that’s all part of the job (or it is in TV Land). But in this week’s episode of The Gates, entitled Identity Crisis, Nick allows a crisis to occur when he doesn't verify the identity of an alleged member of the FBI. In doing so, he puts himself and many of his friends in danger.

When Kat Russo arrives in The Gates, she claims to be an FBI agent investigating a financial fraud case. The suspect: Robert Jessup, a Gates resident who mostly keeps to himself. Nick is helpful at first, but switches gears when he learns a bit more about the investigation. As it turns out, Jessup is a forger, and he helps people (specifically vampires) obtain new identities. Among his clients are Dylan and Claire Radcliff, along with just about every other vampire in town.

Russo learns about a flash drive with the names of Jessup’s entire list of clients, which is in a safe deposit box downtown. Nick, not knowing how to deal with the situation, informs Dylan and the vampires about Russo. The vampires prefer to end situation curtly by killing Russo, as any investigation into their lives would be quite damning. Nick, however, wants to save Russo’s life, and will instead attempt to switch out the flash drive at the bank with a fake one. Nick is angry at Dylan for putting him in this situation, saying he is risking everything by helping hum. Dylan is quick to remind Nick that Dylan did the same thing a few weeks ago when he saved Nick’s life. That sure shut Nick up.

Nick is partially caught in the act by Russo. She grabs the fake flash drive, and arrests Nick. It looks like he’s in deep trouble… but lucky for Nick, Russo isn’t exactly what you’d call an “active” member of the FBI. After Nick and Leigh actually take the time to, you know, actually check her credentials, it turns out Russo has been dead for two years.

Russo is discovered to be formerly engaged to Jessup… and they’re also both vampires! She has been hunting Jessup for retribution, since he made her a vampire against her will. In the end, Russo kills her former husband-to-be, and goes to Nick for the real flash drive so she can hunt down the rest of the vampires. Nick gives up the drive, but tells Russo he can’t protect her against the other vampires. Way to protect and serve, Nick… he’s not protecting Russo, he’s not protecting his friends’ identities… he isn’t protecting anyone but himself. Like I said… he’s a lousy cop.

And while we’re cynically casting judgment on fictional TV characters, I’d like to mention that Dylan is a lousy murderer. I mean, sure, he got rid of “Teresa” easy enough when she tried to kill Nick, but Dylan did a pretty poor job killing Christian. By which I mean: he didn’t kill him at all. Dylan, perhaps after watching too many James Bond films, tried to kill Christian in the last episode by tying him to a tree and walking away before the sun came up. Christian did get singed from the sun’s harmful rays, but it appears he escaped! (No, Mr. Christian, I expect you to die!). At the end of the episode, Christian is able to take advantage of Dylan and Claire while both are wallowing in their own self-pity; while the two are chatting downstairs about their relationship issues, Christian kidnaps Emily and leaves the ring he offered to Claire behind as a calling card. Next time, you watch him die, Dylan. Lesson learned.

But not everyone in The Gates is a failure. Lexie Wade – the sole female werewolf (that we know of) in Lukas’ wolf pack – gets brownie points for her pitch-perfect seduction of Charlie Monohan. After growing annoyed with Brett’s infatuation with Andie, and Lukas’ unwillingness to take back alpha status for the pack, Lexie shakes things up by going after the subject of Andie’s true affection: Charlie.

Lexie’s plan is simple -- and probably as old as the stars in the sky -- but it works like a charm. All she does is cause Charlie to pay attention to her, she makes a few playful advances, and then she fakes being hard-to-get. Charlie, the lost puppy dog that he is, falls for it hook, line and sinker. Lexie and Charlie hang out after school and visit Lexie’s twin sister’s grave. Despite not being the most romantic locale, Charlie says he had a great time (he must be really desperate) and it ends with a kiss.

Most of Lexie’s advances on Charlie are noticed by Andie – including the kiss. Andie is heartbroken, as she still has feelings for Charlie. In what is most certainly a total coincidence, she only exhibits these feelings after she sees Lexie with Charlie (what a shocker). Andie also is dealing with guilt, as she is leading-on Brett without having feelings for him. Andie has to get life force from someone to sate her Succubus powers (that, or take the medicine that she isn’t taking), and Brett is the only person she can drain without hurting. Mia, however, provides another option for Andie; with the Devil’s Weed she took from Devon, Mia believes the weed’s curative powers will work for Andie’s condition the same way it apparently works for cancer. Because as we know, all forms of medicine are exactly the same and treat all ailments equally well.

Seriously, Mia… when Devon of all people tells you something is dangerous, and deadly, you probably shouldn’t recommend that your best friend ingests it. Mia, you are hereby added to the Lousy List for being a terrible witch pupil.

Quick Hits:

- In this episode, Leigh is mentioned to be the computer expert for The Gates Police Department. This isn’t surprising, as it seems there are only four friggin’ people who work there: Nick, Marcus, Leigh, and Eddie the gate guard (who works 24-hour shifts). I wouldn’t be shocked if she were also the demolitions expert, the head of the homicide department, and the sole member of the K-9 division.

- Leigh admits to Nick that she is on Jessup’s list of previous customers, but she promises she is not a vampire. She tells Nick that she needed to start her life over after a bad ex-boyfriend “ripped her heart out”. Something tells me Leigh is being very literal; we learned in the third episode, Breach, that Leigh possess a small box that causes her harm to be apart from. Could her heart be in there? A wild guess, but anything can happen in this show.

- If you were reading above and thought to yourself, “Who the Heck is Lexie,” you’re not alone. Often times when watching The Gates, I’ll forget minor characters’ names, and will have to look them up before I write these recaps. I like to think this isn’t all my fault. For example, Nick’s daughter Dana wasn’t named in the show until the second episode, despite appearing in the pilot for several scenes. I also had this issue with Lexie; even though she was featured prominently in this episode, I still had no idea what her name was. I hope I’m not the only one having this problem.