Tuesday, March 29, 2022

"A Discovery of Witches" | S3:E7 | An Analysis (contains details of E7)

In the spirit of how the Bishops and de Clermonts united as a family in the story of "A Discovery of Witches," I, too, had to take care of the people who are most important to me. I hope that if you're following this blog for my ADOW posts, you'll forgive me for the delay in posting my analysis of the final episode in the series.

The following analysis is solely my own. Some of it offers an opinion while recapping portions of the episode. I impart a little satire within the recap. For this post, I'm mainly covering episode 7 and looking at the themes the show revisits. It may not recap every moment and may not cover every character of the episode. Anything written for this post is created by the blog's author who is an inspired fan with the intention of promoting the work. If you enjoy reading this, please leave a comment here or on Instagram @thataddamsgirl.

Season 3 Episode 7

Writer: Helen Raynor, Director: Jamie Donoughue

Description: As Benjamin tortures Matthew to near death, Diana makes plans to rescue him. Revelations from the Book of Life illuminate the long-hidden secrets of creatures.

We open to the Sept-Tours scene of the vampires and witches strategizing on where exactly Benjamin has taken Matthew and Baldwin enters. It brings everyone to attention. Diana sent for him. She plays the video and he immediately begins to dissect the contents of the video. He reveals that the watch Benjamin is wearing belongs to Philippe. In the previous episode, the witch brought with her a coat in which the watch was purposely placed in the pocket for Matthew to find. Benjamin was on the medical team that tortured and experimented on Philippe with the nazis. Baldwin keeps everyone up to date that he found out Gerbert was protecting Benjamin.

Quickly the team decides to go rescue Matthew before he is driven mad like Philippe. Baldwin, Gallowglass, Marcus, Miriam, and Diana get into a helicopter and set off to rescue Matthew.

Ysabeau, Marte and Sarah stay behind to guard the twins. Gerbert shows up uninvited. He's wearing his coat like a cape. When he enters the main room, he purports to be there for Ysabeau as a friend. He talks so creepily about hearing the childrens' heartbeats. He goes on for a minute about Diana having The Book of Life and the capability to destroy all vampires. He really hates that she's a witch. He dredges up the history he shares with Ysabeau. His game is to remind Ysabeau of what Philippe tried to push -- loyalty and obedience as the patriarchal figure. "Philippe was the sword that made and unmade kings." He belittles Ysabeau by reducing her to being a widow and having a son who forms a scion to break with the Covenant. She fights back with her own words that Gerbert wasn't expecting--that she knows he tortured Philippe with Benjamin. Gerbert and Benjamin made her a widow. "Whatever crimes my family have committed, are nothing compared to yours." Lindsay Duncan as Ysabeau is so powerful in delivering that line. He keeps going on about what the Congregation will do to her. She orders him to leave, go back to Venice, "You have no dominion here."

Benjamin (right) is played by Jacob Ifan.

Arriving at the abandoned medical facility, Diana has the vampires listen for heartbeats. She is sensing trickery as she sees a bleeding Matthew and his gaping, wounded chest. She determines it is an enchantment. She knows this because she as a witch can sense a witch is behind this enchantment. Satu. Diana prevents the vampires from following her with a barrier that they cannot break through. 

Tastes like blood rage. The make up and lighting washes out Matthew's pale skin, and highlights his brilliant blue-green eye color with the color palette of the scene. Matthew Goode is Matthew de Clermont.

She finds another illusion with Matthew by the two baby cribs. He pretends to taste their blood. 

She tells Satu to reveal herself. Diana is unflinching and has far more power with the fact that she is The Book of Life. 

Diana is played by Teresa Palmer

It infuriates Satu, who recites the old prophecy, "Beware of the witch with the blood of the lion and the wolf." Her conjuring of fire in her hands while Diana has her threads prepared. 

Malin Buska as Satu wearing a dress designed by Susie Cave for the clothing line The Vampire's Wife.

She creates a binding spell to suppress Satu's magic. Diana admonishes Satu for misusing her power and saps her from having any power. "Power without conscience is a savage weapon," she says. Satu is left in a corner weeping.

Diana sets off down the hall as she weaves her 10 knots as flashbacks reveal how far she's come over the past three seasons. The arrow pendant that Philippe gave to her lights up like it is being heated from her energy. She's at the tenth knot just as Benjamin enters the hallway through the double doors. She forms a bow and arrow from her tenth knot like Diana the warrior in mythology.  She aims and it hits Benjamin in the heart. "Justice."

The arrow from Philippe. She draws energy from it to conjure the weapon that saves Matthew's life.

The warrior goddess, Diana.

I have a problem with the footwear, especially the sight of white socks. However, great stunt work by whoever is throwing themselves back into the air.

Vampires don't explode into ash or dust like on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"

The only other time we've seen a vampire killed was with Juliette. Benjamin looks like a victim hit by the ash of a volcano. 

Benjamin is dead on the floor. He dies differently like he's being turned into gray ash from the firey impact of Diana's arrow. It's not the same as when she killed Juliette in S1.

She finds Matthew barely conscious, hardly able to utter her name. Her first instinct is to have him drink from her. Marcus decides to get Matthew to Ysabeau, his sire. We don't see Ysabeau slit her wrist, however, for a show about vampires that sadly lacks in displaying realistic gore, we finally get a camera angle of her blood elegantly oozing down her arm into her palm so that she can save her son. 

The sequence of scenes is narrated by Matthew's friend Hamish, reading the poem by Rainer Maria Rilke, sonnet 6. Matthew recovers and finds Diana in a chair. She seems so elated to see him. The next morning, he's at a chessboard with Hamish much like when he played the game in S1. 

We're back to the science when it is revealed that Diana has daemon DNA as does Matthew. They discover that daemon DNA mixed with vampire DNA is what manifests blood rage. There is so much exposition over this topic in such a short time. They talk about weavers descending from witch-daemon unions and that is why Diana could have children with a vampire, which are called Bright Born. The Covenant was creating an extinction effect by making all the creatures live separately because the depletion of daemon DNA had a negative effect on all creatures.

Diana has to take this new information to the Congregation and point out the fact how they've been behind the reason for each of the species dying out. Baldwin tries to discourage her and Matthew has to convince him to let her go speak to them. Baldwin and Matthew have a moment by the window in Philippe's former office. 

Someone upcycled the dress Diana wore in the 1590s into a pantsuit but kept the piping and shoulder accents. 

It stings Gerbert (Trevor Eve) knowing he has to let her into the Congregation.

Bring it on, Gerbert.

Philippe making Diana his daughter allows her to sit on the Congregation as a de Clermont so she goes to Venice with Baldwin and Gallowglass. Baldwin confronts Gerbert and introduces Diana as the de Clermont representative. She holds the key, literally, the key that opens the doors to run the meeting. Gerbert goes on about all of her crimes. She holds her own in defending herself and brings the proof of why the Congregation has to change. She opens The Book of Life and places it in the center of the room. All of the members stand and stare at it. She tells them that she is The Book of Life. She manifests from the book to show everyone the tree representing the branches that make them all related to each other. The tree returns back to the book. She explains that the species decline was because the Covenant segregated the creatures. She proposes that the Congregation overturns the Covenant. Gerbert's argument is still ranting about crimes. She argues for the Covenant to be abolished. The vote is held, the Covenant is abolished, and she nominates Agatha to be the new leader. Everyone, except Gerbert, votes in favor of Agatha as the new leader of the Congregation.

Agatha (Tanya Moodie)

Matthew is chiseling and Jack comes in to hand him the miniature portraits. It's a brief conversation about Jack getting better at controlling the blood rage. We look at the newly formed friendships living in harmony. 

Matthew looks admiringly towards Jack Blackfriars as he exits. He tells him that he loves him.

Finally, Fernando (Olivier Huband) sees a symbol of honor for his partner Hugh de Clermont.

Matthew recites what we heard in the beginning of season one, episode one as we end up in the big room with the old record playing the strings and piano piece we heard in season one when he invites Diana to dance.

Matthew and Diana dance as the ghosts of Emily and Philippe fade in and then out in the background. The camera goes wide as it moves back towards the fireplace, and from the perspective of the viewer, we are all the embers that glow with warmth for these characters whom we cherished for three seasons.

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