[Review] - Warehouse 13, Season 4 Episode 14, "The Sky's The Limit"

Courtesy of Universal Cable Productions.

For those that hadn't heard already, Warehouse 13 has officially been cancelled by Syfy. Sort of. Unlike the complete brush off they gave to Eureka, the network, which also renewed their new series Defiance for a second season, has given the series a final fifth season of six episodes (half their usual count) to rap up any plot threads left lingering from the current season, which was filmed late last year (James Marsters said he was on set in the fall, and Anthony Stewart Head was spotted in Toronto last October). Despite a proto-pilot being shot for a period H.G. Wells spin off, and claims from Marsters himself that producer Jack Kenny was interested in spinning off the Count of Saint Germain character, the departure of Warehouse 13 next year will all but kill the so called Syfy-verse, which had been the shared universe between itself, Eureka and Alphas.

And I figured as much. As I said in my review of the mid season premier, when Syfy starts breaking it's shows into #.5 seasons, it means it's saving money by ordering more episodes upfront and spreading them out over time. And that has historically been a precursor to the biggest money saving tactic there is: stop ordering episodes altogether. And despite what the tone of these reviews might suggest, I will miss it. Not the show so much as the characters. No matter the craptacular plots the writers might stick them in, this is a collection of characters that are good to know, and will be hard to leave behind. And this episode was a reminder of that.

Hit the jump for the review, which contains spoilers that are under constant threat of floating away.

It's always nice to see Joel Gray having fun, and he's clearly having some as the ageing magician, but his "whammy of the week" storyline wasn't the heart of this episode. Neither was Claudia and Jinx and the collection of horribly fake British accents in their diversion (though I do appreciate that the show has, after three Amero-centric years, decided to go more international. Or, as international as Toronto can be). The meat and heart of this episode was Artie. And a new addition to the Warehouse team in Kelly Hu, who will be recurring for the remainder of the season. 

I complained last week about the Regents simply not getting Artie a therapist, and look what happened: a therapist. Yay show. I like that, now that he's had time to settle into his grief, Artie is dealing with his emotions by becoming even more Artie. Increasingly irritable, jumpy, disgruntled. All a wall to hide the fact that he's ready to collapse emotionally. The sad piano playing Artie was fine for a while, and I'm glad to see the writers keeping his evolution through the process fresh. And Saul Rubinek, as always, is the gem of this show. He hit the fragility of Artie's state out of the park.

And Kelly Hu seemed to slip right into the role of the new Bed and Breakfast owner, and into the Warehouse without issue. She is also a damaged soul, looking for salvation as much as Artie is, and Mrs. Frederic obviously thinks they'll be able to help each other. What was refreshing was, as a new comer, she wasn't intimidated or overwhelmed by the Warehouse, and immediately suggested using the artifacts rather then locking them away. Even if it was only to illustrate a point, that she might represent another as of yet untapped mind set will make her a valuable member of the team. And that she has her own issues to work through already means she's a fuller and more interesting character then Leena ever was. Hopefully, one of the five (now four) episodes she's set to appear in will focus on her struggles, rather then just keeping her as a background element for Artie to interact with.

Elsewhere, the episode tackled the concept of magic, and while they've never given a label to what makes exactly artifacts work, its as good as one as any. Which made it a nice juxtaposition to Eureka, and made their crossovers that much more fun. It also got a dig in on Criss Angel, about five years after such references were relevant (is he even still a thing?). Joel Gray was great, but the episode feel down when it came to some truly rubbish CG towards the end, which completely knocked me out of the story. I think at this point, the writers have decided its better just to get Pete and Myka interacting together rather then focusing on the plot, because lets be honest, the sibling-bickering between them is the shows best quality. 

The same can be said of Claudia and Jinx, and if Allison Scagliotti's horse whinny wasn't unscripted, then they made the right choice keeping it in. The way Ashmore broke up speaks volumes to me about how this cast gets along, and brings that through on camera. It's just a shame that they have to do in in plots like the horse racing stuff, which was just filler, and could have been solved in a single segment block. Of course, it could also just have been an excuse to get Claudia dressed up in what I'm going to call punk-posh.

In two weeks, HG returns, and lets just hope she gets more to do then she did in the first half of the season.
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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.


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