You can never tell when the procrastination bug will strike, but even though remixed fairy tales are one of my favorite things, I didn't watch "Grimm" or "Once Upon a Time" until most of my other current series were on hiatus and I had nothing new to watch for a while.
They were, of course, accumulating on my DVR though, so I watched Season 1 of "Grimm," then "Once Upon a Time," in big marathons. Here's a little primer for you in case you are also late to the party but don't want to bother with the marathon first.
Grimm is a cross between "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" and "Supernatural," with our hero, Nick (David Giuntoli) called to Grimm-ness slayer-style by the imminent death of his aunt, Marie (Kate Burton).
Being a Grimm involves the ability to see fairy tale creatures as they truly are (when they're agitated) while the rest of us remain oblivious. The name "Grimm" is based on the true historical records of the Grimm brothers (the first Grimms?). A Grimm's job is to hunt down the bad fairy tale creatures, as in "Supernatural"; although, unlike "Supernatural," they readily admit that there are good ones as well.
There is some question if being a Grimm involves any other features or perks. Nick's aunt was an ass-kicker of the first order, killing two assassins (one fairy tale, one professional human) while in the last throes of n-stage cancer. Nick may or may not have acquired some superior fighting skills when he became a full-blown Grimm. Also, the fairy tale creatures, collectively called wesen, seem to spot him pretty easily; so maybe he has a spirit form that they see when he's upset and we don't.
Finishing up with Grimms, there are more, but not many. During Season 1 we hear about one other Grimm being killed in Europe, but that's it. Nick's parents were killed by wesen when he was young, and he was thereafter raised by Kate. Kate has a trailer full of information, weapons and ingredients. It's odd for someone so prepared to have neglected to prepare Nick for his destined hereditary duties in any way. Even if she didn't want to teach him combat for some reason, she should have taught him German since most of the lore is recorded in German.
Nick is a police detective and was one long before being activated as a Grimm. His partner is Hank (Russell Hornsby), a more experienced veteran. Sergeant Wu (Reggie Lee) seems to be the all purpose dogsbody for the pair. Their captain is Sean Renard (Sasha Roiz), who unbeknownst to our hero or his confederates, is wesen royalty.
Nick's live in girl-friend, Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch), is a veterinarian. The series opens with Nick purchasing an engagement ring, but when Aunt Marie shows up, she orders him to break it off with Juliette and never see her again in order to protect her.
Indeed, 14 episodes in, Juliette has been in danger a few times. Nick is currently waffling over telling her the truth or breaking it off entirely. The problem with telling her, of course, is that she can't see the evidence that is right in front of her face. She can't see the difference even when a wesen is showing its true nature.
Genetically, wesen test as human. Several have undergone DNA testing in the course of Nick's official police investigations and none have thrown up flags as non-human. A friendly subject would have to show dramatic, irrefutable inhuman capabilities and there is the worry that even then she would not believe or that it would break her. That said, she has proven brave, intelligent and resourceful thus far and one hopes that they will keep her.
The wesen, are thus far all therianthropes of one type or another. We have seen werewolves, bears, mice, fox, spiders, snakes, dragons, eagles, etc. Non-animal based wesen include witches, trolls and ogres.
Usually the transformations are just head/facial feature modification and some hand/claw stuff; although, we did see a full-body animal transformation by a were-bear in "Bears will be Bears."
Note, I'm not trying to keep up with the German names, see the Grimm Wiki if you're interested.
The wesen display the analogous creature characteristics that you would expect: enhanced smell, venom, fire, strength, etc. They also have the traditional enmities: mice vs predators, bears vs blondes, wolves vs red-hooded girls.
The Grimms, themselves, have a known hunter class called "reapers" dedicated to exterminating them, usually with a scythe. Reapers are surprisingly numerous considering how few Grimms there are. Wesen live normal-ish human lives with jobs and such. They are well organized with group retirement homes, specialized suppliers and gathering places like bars, clubs and such.
Also, we know Captain Renard to be wesen royalty. How the hierarchy works is still unclear (is Renard on top or is he just minor royalty?); although, he kills and maims at will and expects to be obeyed without question by reapers and others who hold power.
Nick's wesan ally, Eddie Monroe (Silas Weir Mitchell), is a werewolf. Monroe has been in and out of the police station; although, I don't remember a face to face meeting with Captain Renard. As a regular wesen citizen, would he recognize Renard? Atypical of werewolves, Monroe is a vegan, pilates practicing clock smith. He is also a font of lore and unlike his fellow wesen, considers his alliance with Nick to be an honor. When a group of reapers beat him up he tells Nick that he feels no need to back off. He associates where he will. He is a big bad wolf and now that he is watching for them they will never again get the upper hand.
Fourteen episodes in, we have seen more wesen than not. Regardless of how rare the type is supposed to be, it still requires two of the same type to make a third. We have seen no cases of a wesen breeding with a human, or a certain type of wesen breeding with a different type. Being a wesen is genetic. A wesen is born, not created by spell or mystical disease transmission. Other than wesen, the Grimm universe also contains mystical objects of power. It is implied that a megalomania inducing set of coins were responsible for Hitler, a werewolf.
About the Author
Carol Wang is a writer for the entire GenreNexus.Email author