Monday, October 8, 2012

Warehouse 13 falls down

SyFy's Warehouse 13 has had a banner run this season. Minimizing the case of the week stories in favor of a longer arc involving Artie (Saul Rubinek) using an artifact known as the astrolabe, and the consequences of such a turn of events, there has been lingering mysteries, morality conflict, and issues of life and death. It's a step up for an enjoyable and popular series, raising the quality of the story.

As interesting as villains can be, it's nice that Artie hasn't gone bad. He's way too lovable a character to lose, or to have turn evil for real. Now, he has been taken over by an evil power, which has resulted in murder and the release of a very bad virus. But that doesn't make Artie himself bad. There's still the knowledge that the Artie we know and love is in there somewhere, and he can surely be cured.

But how? And what happens when they do get Artie back? Will he remember shooting Leena (Genelle Williams)? If so, will this dark Artie to an even darker place than he's ever gone before? There have always been things in Artie's past that haunt him, but he still manages to get by. Will this most recent story be a turning point, making it very difficult for him to return to the more familiar man.

Is Leena gone forever? Pete (Eddie McClintock) sees visions of her that help him find "Artie" and what Artie is looking for. Will Williams continue playing the role in this manner? It wouldn't really be a reduction for her character, considering she is rarely on screen for more than a few minutes in any given week. Might this be an interesting new twist to take for her, or will she disappear for good once the current crisis is over?

That's the rub. Peter, Myka (Joanna Kelly), and the other track Artie, but they are too late to stop him. There's always been a sense that Artie could take everyone else in a true competition, given his knowledge and experience, and "We All Fall Down," the summer finale, proves that point. Unfortunately, it is proven by Artie unleashing a deadly virus upon the globe that could wipe out half off the population. How can this be stopped? Now that the evilness within Artie has accomplished its goal, will the old Artie be able to help the others save the day? It seems they really might need him to stand a chance.

Warehouse 13 has introduced artifacts that can allow the characters to travel through time and reverse action. But by adding a consequence into each time an artifact is used, with the most powerful artifacts coming at the gravest costs, there is a built in prevention for using such things to save the day on a weekly basis. "We All Fall Down" and the entire arc leading up to it prove that even actions taken with the best of intentions can have unintentional, harmful side effects. With great power comes great responsibility. Artie has lots of power, and when the series returns, it's time to see how much responsibility the Warehouse agents can handle.

Fantastic finale to a series that has gone from good to great. Warehouse 13 will return soon, but not soon enough, to SyFy.

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