Heaven help us all, there’s a ping at a renaissance faire! A mysterious jester appears out of nowhere and zaps a jerk-ish patron who’s been heckling a put-upon looking juggler. Pete and Jinks get sent to investigate, leaving Myka and (in theory) Claudia to help Artie load dangerous Artifacts back into the newly revamped Dark Vault.
At the faire, Pete and Steve start their investigation by talking to the King, who also happens to own the festival. He tells them that the jester disappeared into thin air once the heckler started having a heart attack. The guys interview a whole slew of jesters until they finally get a bit of a break in the case. The heckled juggler wasn’t actually a juggler, per se. He was Oswald the “do-fer,” low man on the festival totem pole, filling in for a sick performer. (When Pete and Steve find him, he’s filling in at the “Soak a Bloke” dunking booth.) He’s whiningly disgruntled, saying that he was supposed to have been made a knight by now, but he’s stuck in his current dogsbody position.
The conversation is interrupted by a runaway cart which happens to be barreling toward a little girl. Pete saves the kid, but that’s not the end of their troubles. Not an hour later, the festival is attacked by a lightning-throwing wizard! Pete saves the princess from the line of fire while Steve tries to tackle the bad guy. The wizard disappears before Jinks can get a hand on him, though.
Continuing the interview with Oswald reveals that the only thing he did different on the day in question was have his fortune told by Madame Doria, who told him that in order to get what he wants, he must become a hero. When they confront the old woman, she says she never read the cards for Oswald. She makes a run for it, though, leading Pete, Steve, and Oswald through the living chess game. As they cross the board, the White Queen goes all Artifact-y and tries to kill them. Like the wizard, she disappears when Pete grabs her.
Pete and Steve catch up to Madame Doria, who turns out to be the grandmother of Oswald’s friend Katarina (who has more than a bit of a crush on the hapless do-fer). She confesses to disguising herself as her grandmother and doing Oswald’s reading. Unfortunately, she used Mother Shipton’s tarot cards to do it. The cards will keep presenting Oswald with opportunities to be a hero until he either succeeds or dies in the attempt.
The guys sign Oswald up for the big knightly tournament so that he can win the heart of the princess and get out from under the influence of the cards. When it’s Oswald’s turn to fight, a massive, evil-looking Black Knight appears on the field. Ozzy runs away until the knight turns to face Katarina instead. Unwilling to let his friend be hurt, Ozzy dashes back into the fray and stabs the knight with his sword. In doing so, he wins the tournament and the hand of the princess. Of course, he rejects the princess in order to be with Katarina. This turns out to be a good thing, as Pete discovers, since the princess has the voice of Lina Lamont. Bless.
Back in good ol’ Univille, Myka has to track down Claudia before they can start helping Artie with the Dark Vault. She finds Claud back at the Regents’ Châtelet, in Claire’s room. Claud has a plan to wake up her sister. She thinks she can use Bob Dylan’s bus transfer to pull the music box energy out and put it into Alessandro Volta’s biscuit barrel. Myka decides to help, and to all appearances, it works. They wake Claire up and break the news that she’s been in a coma for 15 years. Myka volunteers to go break the good news to Artie. Claud is so wrapped up in Claire that she doesn’t notice Myka’s eyes glowing just a bit in that menacing, Artifact-y kinda way.
Claudia and Claire get to know each other again while Claud tries to bring her sister into the 21st century. It’s a cute sequence of scenes involving guitars, coffee, and “When I Grow Up” by Garbage. (Fair warning, it’s an earworm. I’ve been humming it for DAYS.)
Unfortunately, all is not well back in the Warehouse. Myka is in a seriously bad mood and it’s affecting the dangerous Artifacts that she and Artie are trying to move. Artie eventually catches on that Myka’s been whammied, and not just by any Artifact, but by Claire’s music box. At this point, Myka’s progressed to full-on, telekinetic, murderous rage, so Artie calls Claudia in for backup. Claud and Claire distract Myka long enough for Artie to tag her with Pliny’s scroll, temporarily freezing her in amber. Artie tells Claudia that he’d thought of the transfer ticket and biscuit barrel before, but that the music box’s energy has to go into a living person. Claire realizes that the only choice is for her to take the energy back until they can think of a permanent solution.
Back at the Regents’ Châtelet, Claudia and Claire say their goodbyes again with a tearful chorus of “When I Grow Up” before Artie puts Claire back to sleep. Artie takes Claudia back to the Warehouse and shows her his idea board full of rejected plans to help her sister. He tells Claudia and Myka that from now on, they’re doing this together because they’re a family and no one has to go through anything alone. Cue credits and so many feels!
Alright, in the interest of full disclosure, I feel it necessary to tell you that I was on the cast of my local renaissance festival for about 8 seasons (with the most recent season being just last year). Therefore, I may have been a touch distracted from the “snag it, bag it, tag it” storyline by my inner rennie constantly saying, “but that’s not how it works!” It happens. Mea culpa. It was a fun story, but for the inaccuracies that I’m sure next to no one actually noticed. (For more information, please see “Not at My Renfaire” under this week’s “Things to Ponder”.)
All griping aside, the B-plot was awesome and touching this week. I loved that Myka loosened up enough to help Claudia wake up Claire, even if it did backfire magnificently. Watching Claud try to bond with her sister and bring her back up to speed was pretty brilliant, as well. I’m enjoying the new emphasis on the Warehouse crew being a family, even if it does feel a bit like an attempt to reassure the audience that our favorite characters will always have each other, even when the show ends.
Next week is Warehouse 13‘s telenovela episode. I had the opportunity to watch it early, and guys, you don’t even understand how awesome this episode is. I’ve re-watched this one a non-zero number of times already.
Myka: “You shot me??”
Artie: “Well, it wasn’t really a shot, per se. More like an aggressive ‘hello.’”
Things to Ponder:
- With three episodes left, is Claire going to become a lifelong background crusade for Claud, or have we not seen the last of her?
- No seriously, guys. Did Josh get sucked into another vortex?
- So Claire got all coma-tastic in 1999, right? The N64 and PlayStation had already been out for a couple of years. I have trouble believing that she’d get confused by video games.
- Not at My Renfaire: Using a non-juggler to substitute in a juggling show, ye aulde suspenders, changing characters mid-season (Katarina’s becoming a lady in waiting next week), tying an actor’s promotion to the village hierarchy (see previous), cast members drinking out of ye aulde soda cups on site, unscripted combat with live steel
- Artifact Roundup: Bob Dylan’s bus transfer, Alessandro Volta’s biscuit barrel, Mother Shipton’s tarot cards, re-use of Pliny the Elder’s scroll