Welcome back everyone. We will be pulling apart and dissecting ‘A Discovery of Witches’ – 2nd episode. It was written by Kate Brooke. It was directed by Juan Carols Medina. The directors are Radford Neville and Dominic Barlow. The series is executive producers are Deborah Harkness and Kate Brooke.
When in Venice do as all the Venetians do:
The episode opens and we see Juliette (Elarica Johnson) on the prowl around the canals of Venice, Italy. She’s stalking her next Matthew but it’s not Matthew Clairmont (Matthew Goode). One person calls out “Matthew” with a French accent. Juliette’s laser like focus picks it immediately. She starts enticing this “Matthew” with those “come hither” looks. (A side note here: I really love the soundtrack to season 1.) We hear “White Rabbit” by Jefferson Airplane) playing in the background. The song really delineates a vampire’s blood lust and how intoxicating the craving is for them. Juliette and this “Matthew Beignet” are having sex in an alley. (Keep it classy, girl!) She gives him a series of love bites. Matthew tries running from her. He’s her white rabbit and his blood consumes her. Like a predator hunting its prey. Juliette finally gets what she wants: Blood. She has drained this “Matthew” dry. A little while later, Domenico (Greg Chillin) finds out the news. Where he goes to the morgue and investigates. The corner explains “No blood on him, no blood at the scene.” Domenico takes a huge whiff of the body. He detects instantaneously the smell Juliette all over him. Domenico goes to tattle on Juliette to Gerbert (Trevor Eve). Her father/sire Gerbert is infuriated! (You know why: Baldwin de Claremont sees and hears everything going on!) Gerbert first needs to find out what Juliette was up to. He takes a bite into her neck. He sees the attack. Proceeded by Juliette and Matthew Clairmont having sex. He throws her in the dungeon.
“People, people who need people. Are the luckiest people in the world.”
Off to Woodstock, England where Matthew Clairmont (Matthew Goode) visits his close friend, Hamish Osborne, (Greg McHugh) who’s a demon. This scene clearly demonstrates Matthew’s lack of prejudice for other species. Matthew came to seek counsel from his old friend. They exchange greetings and a few barbs.
“This place looks like a wedding cake.” – Matthew
“Did you really come here to diss my interiors, Matt.” – Hamish
Matthew goes on to tell Hamish he needed to get away. Hamish already has an idea why his friend’s there. If one thing Hamish has learned over the many years of their friendship. Matthew is clearly conflicted with something monumental. Hamish senses by his tone and reactions. In a more complex sense, Matthew wasn’t prepared for his feelings which are clearly taken hold of him.
“I came up here to get away from a witch. I’m craving her.” – Matthew
(If you could have seen Hamish’s reaction… It was like he knew this witch is different). Shortly after this; Hamish takes Matthew out for a hunt. Matthew must control his blood rage; we see Matthew hunting a stag. It’s after that this #brotp has a candid conversation. Matthew’s experiencing something he himself was not prepared for: The introduction of Diana Bishop presence in his life. (He had always wished and hoped for a mate, Now? Her? Can this be real?) Matthew didn’t realize how much she’s already affected him. She has invaded his thoughts, his fears, his desires. It can be compared to an awakening. He’s having a hard time controlling himself and these feelings. What do good friends do to discuss all that ills you? They play a game of chess. There is nothing quite like a strategy game to pick up on what your opponent is thinking. You can clearly see Matthew is distracted. Which gives Hamish the opportunity to win.
“There is more to the game than protecting your queen.” – Hamish
I found it interesting how Hamish is already picking up on Matthew’s intense need to want to protect Diana. Therefore the “queen” reference is key… Matthew’s queen is Diana’s. Hamish is Matthew’s truth teller.
“But Matt, you’ve never talked about another women like the way you do about Diana Bishop.” – Hamish
Hamish reminds Matthew what happened with Celica and Eleanor. (These were the other 2 human women; Matthew was involved with.) Matthew feels like his old friend is giving him a harsh reality check. Matthew realizes in his attempts to stay in the background and distancing himself from Diana – he isn’t keeping her safe at all. Matthew’s thinking, he thought he monster in this story, has backfired. The notion of losing her terrifies him. Truly, a price they could both pay for. You will always pick it up in my reviews to come, Hamish mentions Diana by name a few times. The various factions of creatures rarely do this, if at all. It’s usually by creature species. Hamish warns Matthew once more before he leaves. Matthew is going back to Oxford, to protect Diana. (Our boy is in a “river named denial.”) Hamish is a loyal friend indeed.
The season of the witch.
Meanwhile, Diana is dealing with Peter Knox (Owen Teale) and Satu (Malin Buska), back at Oxford. They have become a huge problem for her. All the witches are waiting for Diana to arrive to call up ‘Ashmole 782’. Diana sees Satu looking down at her in the Bodleian. Not even a second later, Peter Knox arrives.
“Suppose word has spread that the Ashmole manuscript was taken out.” – Peter Knox
Honestly, Peter must think Diana’s naïve. He assures her he’s a friend. (Yeah, and Freddy Kruger’s mine. *Snorts*) He tries persuading Diana he knew her mother, Rebecca.
“Are you a tea drinker like your mother was?” – Knox
“I’m not my mother, Mr. Knox.” – Diana
Diana tries putting Peter Knox on notice. Honestly, this is the part, I would have got my arse out of there. Diana agrees to have tea with Peter after learning he knew her mother. Diana asks Peter, if he knew her father. “Only slightly.” (Yeah, Peter. You hated him, right!) The way he describes Rebecca to Diana, you would have thought they were the same person. He mentions Aunt Sarah (Alex Kingston) and Em (Valarie Pettiford) being very protective of her. (You think?! They’d let the likes of you anywhere near her.) He wants if this book. Peter’s letting his true animus be known.
“If this book is what I think it is. It contains the witches’ first spells. It could tell us how we created vampires.” – Peter
We know Diana is not prejudice. “I’m not interested in uncreating another species.” – Diana
Satu is in the next room, listening and trying to read Diana. Satu seems to think Diana’s hiding something. They decide they’ll have to try other tactics. We find out that Gillian Chamberlain (Louise Brealey) is indeed a rat. She’s no friend of Diana’s. In fact, she’s been playing two sides the entire time. Gillian is clearly envious of Diana. (Peter Knox made sure Gillian would be… “Using Elemental Magic.” Ring a bell?) Gillian meets up with Sylvia (Nila Aallia) the head of their coven. Gillian spills the bean to Sylvia, Peter Knox and Satu. Diana has found “Ashmole 782” and she’s friends with a vampire. (How dare she? How could she? Gillian, karma is a bitch.)
“I can take care of myself.” – Diana
Diana doesn’t really understand the creature’s world. Diana has made it her 1st priority, shunning magic because of what happened to her parents. You could use the example, “I never feared persecution until now.” – Diana tells Satu this when she’s tailing her in the park. You could really say the witches have proved to be her biggest enemies. Yet, a vampire, Matthew Clairmont has been totally upfront and controlled himself. All of this in despite of what Gillian, Knox, Satu and everyone else has told her about Vampires.
“Thank God you’re here. You haven’t been answering your phone.” – Diana
There it is… ‘fate complete’. Gillian was the one person Diana thought she could trust in Oxford. Seeing Peter Knox in Gillian’s house was like a knife in the heart. Now she realizes that the one person she told about her struggles was also a double agent to the Head Witch, Peter. Diana starts to get upset; she is angry. Every person in her life she thought she could confide in, has let her down. She starts getting flashbacks of all the moments. Gillian, Peter Knox, Satu, and then Matthew… As scary as Matthew was when his instincts tried to take over to hunt her, he got them in control. Matthew told her what to do to escape. He protected her even from himself. The witches have never done that. The one friend she thought she could confide in is gone.
“Professor Clairmont’s rooms, please.” – Diana
Diana then goes to seek out the only person she feels she can trust, Matthew. She heads for his rooms. Only to be disappointed he is not there. She leaves. Only to spot Matthew at the bottom of the staircase. (The look exchanged. Le Sigh..) Matthew invites her to come into his rooms.
“Try to calm down. Your adrenaline is very high.” – Matthew “You can smell my adrenaline?” – Diana
“Of course, I can. – Matthew
Matthew wonders why she came to him. Diana did tell him; she never wants to see him again. Diana explains she has no one else to talk with. I can imagine Matthew was pleased with this. In the creature world, trusting someone is paramount. (Especially amongst a vampire/witch relationship. They’re not of the same species, this is rare.) We begin to realize that Matthew’s awakening to his feelings for her are real. He sees her as beautiful, intelligent, unique, brave and a witch willingly turning against her own coven.
“I don’t trust what Peter Knox will do with it. He hates other species. He’d use it against them.” – Diana
Matthew wanted to know why Peter Knox wants the book. In this scene, watch his hand, the deliberate choice he makes. He retrieves the book (It parallels Diana in E1.) He’s offering her the chance to know more about him, to learn more out what he does. Why he does it. For him, this is a huge risk, letting her into his life. He has made up his mind. She walks through that door, cracking open the book.
“You knew Charles Darwin?” “How old are you?” – Diana
I love her emphasis on “old”. When you think about it, Matthew appears to look young. Yet, he has lived many lifetimes and experienced things we can’t possibly fathom. He toys with her as she tries to guess his age. You can see the flirting going on here.
Entering the vampires lair.
“I won’t harm you. You have my word.” – Matthew
“Alright.” – Diana
Matthew is letting her in deeper to his life than any other person before. He tells her to put a jacket on.
“Your cold.” – Matthew
“You can hear my heart?” – Diana
“Yes, all the time.” – Matthew
Clearly, you could see how this scene, it’s becoming more apparent. They are starting to fall in love. Off to the laboratory, where Diana meets Marcus (Edward Bluemel) and Miriam (Aiysha Hart). Marcus immediately approaches Diana .Matthew’s not having it. This reminded me of the “alpha male” thing. Matthew growls at Marcus in his face, his son backs off. The next scene was swoon worthy. Matthew explaining the different reasons why creature species are slowly dying off. The look between them. It was so intense and meaningful. He’s hovering over her, protecting her.
They flirt when they leave. I love the visual foreplay between them. They discuss the major changes between humans and creature species.
“As far as I can tell there are only two emotions that keep the world turning. One is desire, and the other is fear.” – Matthew “Magic is desire made real.” – Diana That’s what her aunts always told her. Matthew’s desire for the book and now her is starting to hit him like a mac truck. Diana tells Matthew about the book. I found this part as a test of Matthew’s resilience. He says “Thank You.” and then kisses her palm. He’s marking his mate.
Thank you for reading! Please follow us at @tvserieshub for all the latest news and future reviews. Don’t forget to follow me @EJamiHEIninfite @ADiscoveryOfWitchesTV, @DeborahHarkness @amc @shudder and @sundancetv. I will be back next week with my review of S01E03 review. Until then, take care everyone.