Senior Staff Writer
Hemlock Grove is a Netflix original series that centers on a small town with an array of supernatural secrets. Season 2 of the series premiered on Friday exclusively on Netflix, and PopWrapped is ready to review and share our thoughts on the first 6 episodes. Leave now to avoid spoilers!
-Spoiler Territory Below-
In season 1; Roman was a character you consistently wanted to better himself, but managed to dig himself quite a hole from his actions. His development in season 2 shows Roman is now in charge of the Godfrey Institute, and is doing his best to be a business man while dealing with Upir tendencies and yet still be a rebellious young adult. Roman convinces himself that he can avoid feeding on humans and comes extremely close on many occasions (a few unlucky individuals didn’t receive Roman’s restraint). Roman’s life has changed drastically trying to deal with fatherhood in the most bizarre circumstances, and has an epiphany about the person (key word) he wants to be.
Famke Janssen serves cold hearted Olivia as perfect as season 1, however Olivia’s story-line is drastically changed as she finds herself in a weakened state dealing with mortality. It serves as a pivotal change to the character adding a new layer to Olivia. The relationship with son Roman remains complex, as Roman wants nothing to do with his mother despite her offering Upir wisdom to deal with his transformation.
New girl, Miranda (OITNB’s Madeline Brewer) is stranded in town after being ran off the road, wrecking her vehicle and stumbling upon Roman and eventually Peter. Brewer shines in the role, bringing a likable naivety to Hemlock Grove and Miranda quickly develops a bond with both men adding to the pre-existing tension between Roman and Peter after Peter abandoned him last season. As it progresses the two work to repair the friendship, at least to solve the towns mysteries once again.
Anyone who noticed the potential romantic interest and deep connection between Roman and Peter were met with an “I KNEW IT” moment when the two participate in a ménage à trios with Miranda. The three will seemingly develop a polyamorous-esque Upir/Gypsy Wolf love triangle. Not your typical relationship but hey, that’s Hemlock Grove! (more on this in the next review)
Peter has a variety of spooky dream sequences involving death, snakes, and children which Roman also begins sharing were a great addition. Anytime dream space is explored in the show, it’s done phenomenally. A few new creepy cult like members in white masks have made their way to Hemlock Grove and appear to be committing murders and targeting families with children, which adds a different approach to horror with slasher-moments. Destiny is given a more prominent role this season which is excellent, with such a fun witty character played by a talented actress Tiio Horn, the decision to incorporate her as an official cast member improved the well rounded ensemble. The fortune teller is often the point of guidance for Peter and occasionally others, so you begin to learn to listen to what Destiny has to say, and lover her for it.
Dr. Pryce has made extreme progress with the top secret project shown at the end of season 1 which has now developed into an actual person, and concocted a slimy substance beverage Upir’s are sure to love. It’s a rough one. Pryce has involvement with almost every character featured with all roads leading to the “White Tower.” Joel de la Fuente balances being a powerful decisive role, while proving to have compassion for select characters (Absolutely love the relationship between Pryce and Shelley).
If that all isn’t enough, a new player arrives with one of the most cringe worthy torture scenes a guy could experience. Cover your eyes and possibly groin, gentlemen! The first six episodes of the horror series brings a coherent supernatural story, while successfully integrating new characters in with the returning ones as well. The cast is selected perfectly and Madeleine Martin’s portrayal of Shelley brings a life like take on the character, even with little dialogue. (give it time, its happening!) The second season seemingly has found its niche and provides the best horror elements with gore, scares, and characters you grow to love passionately or hate deeply. Eli Roth has done it once again. Check back soon for the review of the remaining 4 episodes of Hemlock Grove, and if you haven’t begun watching, check out the series on Netflix! It’s a horror-buff must watch!