The Gates Watch: Jurisdiction

Somehow, seemingly overnight, Sarah Monohan has become the most powerful woman in The Gates. How? Not with vampire speed, or lycanthropy strength, or witchcraft, or Barbara Jansen’s intricate web of gossip… no, she’s accomplished this feat with unfaltering kindness. And that kindness, devious as it is, may be just the thing The Gates needs to bring its two female factions together.

In this week’s episode of The Gates, Sarah helps organize a fundraiser, at first with Karen Crezski and her group of friends. However, after learning that weather-related issues have made their fundraiser unfeasible, she decides to invest her efforts in helping Claire and Vanessa with their art auction/fundraiser. This isn’t well received by Karen and the gang.

Sarah is able to get the art auction fundraiser rolling after some assistance from Devon, who offers to host the fundraiser at her spa. With the combined drawing power of culture and pampering, the fundraiser is a smashing success, bringing in over $20,000. The two factions are warming to each other (slightly), and Devon is the recipient of much adulation… that is, until she harps on Frank and Vanessa in front of everyone for their past infidelity. Almost everyone leaves the spa in disgust of Devon’s actions, but Sarah remains behind and begins to feel sympathy for the ostracized Dev.

So why is Sarah so powerful? Well, in her short time in The Gates, she’s managed to become quite the diplomat. She’s gotten the notoriously cold Karen Crezski to open up, as well as Devon, she’s become one of Claire’s best friends, and through both Karen and Claire, she’s been accepted into both factions of the suburban-wide cat fight. Plus she’s now chummy with Dev – the badass witch in town who always seems to be scheming up something. Not a bad person to be on good terms with! So now, due to her completely inoffensive behavior, Sarah is in the center of a giant Venn diagram of The Gates’ social circles. Of course, she is still oblivious to the whole “vampires, werewolves and witches” thing. It’s going to be juicy when she eventually finds out Nick has been keeping that secret from her.

Speaking of which, Nick is making some social headway as well. He earned a lot of good mojo with the vampires this week, as he helped save one from a grisly fate. Barbara Jansen, who we all know from her delightful tidbits of gossip, is found dead with fang holes in her neck at the start of the episode. Nick recruits Dylan’s help in the investigation, but Dylan – wanting to keep Nick in the dark about other vampires in The Gates -- doesn’t prove to be helpful. Well, at least not intentionally. When Nick learns Dylan is visiting all the vampires in town, getting their story about the murder, Nick orders an unsuspecting Eddie the Gate Guard to follow Dylan and take pictures of whom Dylan visits.

This leads Nick to Gloria – Barbara’s friend and business partner – who he then confronts. Gloria admits to being at the murder scene, to being a vampire, and to having a romantic relationship with Barbara. Wasn’t expecting that last one! Gloria claims she didn’t kill Barbara, and was actually trying to save her by turning her into a vampire. As it turns out, vampires are created by first feeding on their prey, then giving them back vampire blood. Gloria was unsuccessful in her attempt, but the fang marks Gloria left behind were still was enough to implicate her to the other vampires. She’s appropriately worried about this, since killing inside The Gates is a crime punishable by death.

Nick attempts to bring Gloria into the police station, but she is captured before this happens. A furious Nick calls Dylan, whom he believes to be behind Gloria’s kidnapping. When Dylan claims he didn’t kidnap Gloria, Nick asks Dylan to help stall Gloria’s execution; Nick believes her story, and evidence on the corpse backs up her claims. Nick eventually discovers that the death wasn’t vampire-related at all; the real murder was an accident -- the result of a heated confrontation between Barbara and her ex-husband Alex. Alex is arrested, Gloria is freed, and Nick earns some good will.

Nick also finally realizes the tremendous risk Dylan took when Dylan saved his life, killing Teresa within The Gates’ walls. This couldn’t come at a more opportune time. At the end of the episode, Nick meets with Frank Buckley, and tells Frank that he knows about the vampires within The Gates. Buckley says he kept Nick in the dark so Nick would take the job. Nick is angry, but Buckley has an ace up his sleeve. Dylan arrives on the scene, and together he and Nick watch Buckley’s security footage of Dylan killing Teresa. With both Nick and Dylan on the line should that tape become public, Buckley now has a tremendous amount of leverage over the pair.

Quick Hits:

* The drama of Christian and Claire’s secret relationship, and how Dylan fits into the picture, is taken up another notch this week. Claire, believing Christian to be responsible for Barbara’s death, tells Christian that she never wants to see him again. That’s unfortunate for Claire, since Dylan runs into Christian and invites him home for dinner. We learn this episode that Christian is actually Dylan’s oldest friend, making Christian a somehow even bigger scumbag than he was before. During dinner, Christian makes several comments to Claire brimming with innuendo while Dylan and Emily are none the wiser. While Dylan is upstairs, Claire threatens Christian and tells him to leave her life. But something tells me we haven’t seen the last of him yet…

* Will Andie ever learn her lesson? Even after she learns from Peg that her Succubus condition is getting worse, she refuses to take her pills. Her excuse? Some phony baloney desire to be free of its nauseous side effects. (See, to me, I’d figure feeling nauseated beats having a dead boyfriend any day.) In reality, Andie yearns to be like her mother, whom Andie believes was able to control her Succubus powers without medicine. Little does she know that her mom couldn’t control herself, and that’s the reason why she’s dead. Granted, it’s hard to blame Andie for this; it’s her dad’s fault for never telling Andie the truth about how her mother died. Recklessness must run in the family. At the end of the episode, after a near-fatal kiss with Charlie, she finally wises up and takes her meds. Smart girl. She also tells Charlie it was her fault that he got hurt, but didn’t tell him why. That might come up again. Call me crazy.

* This episode featured some of the best insults yet in the suburban housewife vampire-werewolf feud. Karen Crezski makes a snide remark to Claire, saying she could use a facial since she uses so much sunscreen. Claire counters by offering her a silver dog choker. Buuuuurn!

* Devon, despite gaining some sympathy points this episode, still manages to remain creepy and conniving by the end of the show. In one of the final scenes, we see Devon has kept and cataloged the beauty masks (or something similar) from all the women who came into her shop. This adds to the slew of other creepy things she has collected and secrets she has kept in the series’ short run. Devon is definitely the most mysterious -- and possibly the most dangerous – person in The Gates right now.