“The Third Rail” is supposed to be the rousing pseudo finale of The Strain but it yet again proved to be an uneven hour, with varied degrees of focus. I just can’t fathom how these episodes were written, as this week the central conflict finally develops while a woman while Alzheimer’s takes up far more time than she needs to, looking for her ash tray.
Let me get this out of the way. I understand her attachment to the object. I understand why she’s hysteric, and I get why she’s part of the show. It’s about holding on, it’s about protecting the one’s closest to us, but why in the name of god do you leave the child and the old lady to hold down the fort? As illogical as that may be, it’s really the child actor playing Zack that bothers me to no end. See, the script has him acting like a mini adult where it’s required and a complete imbecile in other scenes.
Yet, despite all my dialogue problems with this little adult, his story held my favorite moment of the week when he and Gus cross paths. It shows that this world will eventually have our heroes converge on one another and when they do it’ll be glorious. But, until then we have to deal with small moments like this.
Speaking of Gus, he’s becoming a fearsome force for the fight back against the master. It’s clear that he now understands the world has fall to ruin after killing his brother and his mother nothing is sacred, and he was already violent by nature. So his story is really going to be something to watch.
Finally this week we were given some moments of true terror with our group descending into the subway tunnels. There was a real sense of fear when they had to cross over the hordes of sleeping vampires and real tension between the group. And, how awesome was that vamp hitting the third rail and smoking to a crisp? It’s imagery like that, which keeps me coming back week after week.
What keeps me thinking about giving up on this show are moments like Eph’s blind determination to find Kelly amidst these hordes of deadly creatures. On the one hand I get it, this is his wife, but she was completely estranged and very distant. Their relationship wasn’t the strongest and while he may find the compelling need to release her from the virus, the time has come to move on.
Abraham handles everything like a champ, as is assumed with how badass he’s been over the past few weeks. Yet, we get a peak into his defining flaw, his raw determination to defeat the master compels him to make mistakes. He’s far to dedicated to revenge, but how fucking awesome was it when he smashed The Master’s coffin to nothing. He was finally able to make amends with his crucial mistake from years ago. It’s damning how much that actually haunted him because you don’t see it on his face until that very moment.
While Vasily seems to be the only one who can remain objective in this scenario and is reprimanded for it. It’s almost as if they don’t like that he doesn’t care, but it’s his biggest asset. This is a man who killed vermin for a living and now his world is overrun. Let the man go wild, he’s sure to get the job done better than anyone.
With two more weeks to go, The Strain is showing signs of age. This weeks episode felt padded yet again, but was a significant improvement over last week. The large cast forces episodes to narrow their focus but doesn’t always bode well. While, the A story hit new heights of horror for the series, the B story faltered completely with Zack, and Gus’ story was long overdue. We’ve still got a lot of road left to cover and hopefully these last two episodes will help the series stick the landing on an otherwise bumpy season.
– Really don’t dig the look of The Master he comes off impossibly cheap.
– I understand Zack’s dedication to his phone, but getting two strangers killed for it was a little much.
– We need more brief scenes like the one between Zack and Gus, showing how the world is getting smaller every day.
– Two weeks no Eichorst, send help.
What did you think of “The Third Rail?”