Whoosh!
Online Edition Yet another bad hair day


WITCHBLADE

PERICULUM


EPISODE NO. 07
Season 1, episode 07
Series 107
1st release: 07/24/01
2nd release: 08/26/01
Production number: 107
Last update: 09/10/01


REGULAR CAST, GUEST CAST & CREDITS
TV GUIDE PROMO
SYNOPSIS by Nora
COMMENTARY by Beboman
THE COMIC CONNECTION
LINKS


REGULAR CAST
Yancy Butler (Sara Pezzini)
David Chokachi (Jake McCartey)
Anthony Cistaro (Kenneth Irons)
Will Yun Lee (Danny Woo)
Eric 'Kaos' Etebari (Ian Nottingham)

GUEST CAST
John Hensley (Gabriel Bowman)
Kim De Lury (Conchobar)
Nestor Serano (Captain Bruno Dante)

CREDITS
Teleplay by Ralph Hemecker
Directed by --

Filmed on location in Toronto.




TV GUIDE PROMO

Sara is put to the ultimate Witchblade trial. Meanwhile, Captain Dante introduces Jake to a secret brotherhood of vigilante officers who use their own methods to exact justice - will he join with them?

Sara is subjected to the ultimate Witchblade trial; Jake is asked to join the vigilante officers. ExciteTV

Joan of Arc tells Sara that "your spirit and the spirit of the Witchblade must become one. It is that which links us - you, and I and the others. It is the hinge of our shadows." Elizabeth Bronte tells Sara, "I am not from your past, nor are you from my future. Both of our lifetimes exist right now." She also reveals the origin of the Witchblade: "It is a branch ripped from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil." WarnerBros.

Sara faces the ultimate Witchblade trial; Jake is recruited into a secret brotherhood of vigilante police officers.






SYNOPSIS:

This synopsis is by Nora.

Ian Nottingham is explaining to Kenneth Irons that he has noted that Sara has not left her apartment in four days. She has not bathed, has not called anyone, and she has not eaten anything. He even filled her refrigerator with all her favorite foods as she slept but to no avail. Kenneth Irons listens intently between scenes of Sara wandering about her apartment. She seems very lost and lonely. Jake attempts to get her on the phone but she refuses to answer. He tries to get her to work using it as a distraction for all she is going through. On the other side of town, Kenneth asks Ian for his analysis and he says that Sara seems to be suffering deep depression, desperate grief, a broken heart and she may even try to end her life.

Sara finally gets into bed as Ian tells Irons that he needs to watch her closely from now on. Sara is sleeping rather restlessly and dreaming about being with Conchobar, but also about the moment he died. Sara is awakened and as she attempts to get out of bed she finds that metal laces around her wrist and legs confine her to it. Right about now you can start thinking comic book connection. Nice touch!

Jake is trying to keep on top of all the work piling up with Sara not there. The Captain is questioning Jake about Sara being involved in the Irish group's murders. He also does not believe him when Jake tells him that Sara is just suffering from a bout with food poisoning.

Sara is now struggling with the metal laces now beginning to cover her body. The answering machine picks up a call from Gabriel because she cannot reach the phone. Jake gets an invitation from the Captain for beers after work when he tells him that Sara has a bonafide alibi for the time that the Irish group was being gunned down. According to Jake, she was talking with Kenneth Irons about another case they were working on. The Captain seems fascinated.

Sara is now scared about the situation she is in. Danny appears to her and they have a discussion about her situation and the bracelet being back on her wrist. Meanwhile Jake visits Kenneth Irons and finds out from him that he has already corroborated his story to the Captain. Irons seems quite distracted and sends Jake off without too much conversation.

Danny is trying to get Sara to relax and calm down as she struggles with the metal now entwining her whole body. He holds and kisses her hand and she realizes that something is wrong because she can feel him holding her hand. He tells her that she can feel him now because she is dying.

There are scenes of weather travesties shown; tornados, hurricanes, volcano's erupting, etc. Kenneth Irons states that the Periculum has begun. Ian then says that means Sara is the true wielder. Irons seems to be suffering somewhat and his scarred hand has become stiff and painful. He sends Ian to watch Sara because he cannot do anything to help him. Ian seems pleased with this order.

As Sara wakes she finds that there is more metal surrounding her. As it grips around her, Irons is also seen being affected by this situation. The next scene is of Sara lying among dead armor draped men. She is awakened by the tip of a sword on her arm. Startled, Sara asked the armor draped woman standing over her who she is. The woman who is identical to Sara, tells her not to be frightened. Sara tells her that she recognizes her as Joan of Arc but she also has her face. Joan tells her that she also has her soul and heart. She then tells her that this is the Periculum, the test of her worthiness to wear the Witchblade. A trial by fire - life or death. She is told that she does not have a choice in the matter.

She is told that she has been chosen to wear and wield the Witchblade. Sara wants to know why. Joan tells her that it is a complex matter. It rises when dark forces reach a critical mass. Sara seems very confused by all of this information. She is told that the Witchblade has been initiating her so far and has deemed her worthy of this test. Sara even though confused by it all, says she is ready. Joan asks Sara what her crises is. What is her battlefield? Sara responds that it is the whole damned world. The world is insane. Joan tells her that is the correct answer - insanity - being unclean. She is destined to work towards that. Again, Sara is confused. She asks Joan how she can be so quick to support the Witchblade when it abandoned her before. Joan raises her sword to strike Sara and the Witchblade appears to protect her. She is told that the blade has not abandoned her.

Jake and the Captain are having a couple of beers and the Captain tries to convince him that Sara's father was responsible for his partner's death. Jake does not believe it yet. The Captain also continues to bad mouth Sara and I am very surprised that Jake takes it over and over again from him.

Gabriel comes to Sara's door and as she is about to yell out to him the metal covers her mouth. He tells her through the door that the research he has done on the blade points to an initiation of some sorts that could prove fatal if not passed. Sara seems to have moved on to another dream state. She is in a forest (NOTE: all the dream sequences are done in black and white film) and comes upon Cathain. She recognizes her from the story she read. Sara is crying and tells her that death follows her. Cathain tells her that it is the opposite, Sara follows death. Cathain calls her back to her destiny. She asks her what she is willing to do to achieve this goal - restoring sanity back to the world. Is she willing to sacrifice her life and Sara answers yes. Sara asks if she can get Conchobar back and Cathain says yes. Before she can get any more information she is pulled away from the scene.

Ian is watching Sara on her bed covered in the entwined metal when he sees a flash of Danny's face on the window. He notes that someone else is watching Sara and asks him to watch her.

Jake and the Captain are still having beers together and talking about why they became cops. The Captain says that being a cop is about a sacred trust and being part of a group. He also says that they are underpaid and overworked. He claims to have a solution for it.

Sara is now totally bound on her bed and Irons is also bound on the floor of his office. But he has no visible bindings. Ian comes in to check up on him and tells him that Sara has a guardian angel watching over her. Irons does not seem convinced and not happy with the fact that Ian is questioning his directives.

The Captain shows Jake a bullet with a bull on the casing. He tells him that he is a member of a secret trust group called the White Bulls. Jake asks what the group is all about. The Captain explains that when someone is obviously guilty and the system cannot be trusted to deliver justice they use one of the bullets to achieve that justice. But they watch each other's backs.

Sara is now in a bedroom and a man is asleep on the bed. Elizabeth Bronte then enters the room. Sara asks her if she is her grandmother. Elizabeth tells her that they are the same person. Not exactly reincarnation. They coexist at the same time in different times. Elizabeth tells Sara to break her paradigm of time in order to understand. Sara asks her why time slips back and forth for her. Elizabeth tells her that is an aspect of the Witchblade she herself could not control. Time is just a matter of perception is the overall message here. They are the same person. When Sara finally admits that she carries a heavy load of fear. Elizabeth asks her what else could she feel besides fear. Sara then acknowledges that she would also be disappointed because she still has so much left undone. At this point Elizabeth smiles and tells her that today she has become a true warrior and she should walk forward in her truth. The last thing she tells her is to trust the Witchblade and when it guides her she should follow.

Back at the local bar Jake is being given an opportunity to join the White Bulls. The Captain explains that they work to balance the scales and help each other out in any way they can. Even if it means taking money that would otherwise be destroyed. He is told that he has one opportunity only and should not let it go. He doesn't have much time and should be prepared for an initiation as part of the deal. Another part of the initiation would involve Sara.

Sara asks if she failed he Periculum and Elizabeth says that there are only true answers to the test and she has done that. When asked about the history of the Witchblade, Elizabeth informs Sara that the blade is branch of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. She then leaves Sara.

As time is seen passing by, Sara lies on her bed and the metal has disappeared. She wakes up gasping for air. She is now dressed and picking up broken glass from her floor. Danny appears and as she moves to hug him he tells her that she cannot touch him anymore because she is no longer dying. Sara agrees and says not anymore.

Ian reports to Irons that Sara is alive and has evidently passed the Periculum. Irons states that Sara and the Witchblade are now one and will be more difficult to control. As 'Do You Believe In Magic' plays in the background, Jake comes to visit Sara. He is surprised to find her looking refreshed and happy. She mentions that she feels like she now has a clear purpose. On her table is her father's box that has been opened. When Jake asks about it she mentions that they were things that belonged to her parents and wanted to see if there were any stories to tell in the box. Jake picks up a bullet with a bull on the casing. It was among the items left by Sara's father for her.



COMMENTARY

This commentary is by Beboman.

Well, this was a totally Sara episode, and a good one too. I would not say excellent, but good. This has nothing to do with the acting. Once again, YB was very good in her portrayal of Sara Pezzini.

I would say that YB did a super great job playing not only Sara, but also Joan of Arc, Cathania and Elizabeth Bronte, all her predecessors.

This is Sara's test by "The Witchblade" to see if she is deserving. If we recall from a previous episode, Sara relinquished the"Blade" to someone else and that person used the "Blade" to kill Sara's lover.

The thing about this test (which finds Sara totally devastated by the death of her lover) is that if you fail, you die. Not good odds. "The Witchblade" really gives a new meaning to the word failure, and its timing just sucks. Talk about kicking a woman when she is down.

The thing about this episode was that it had three different story lines going on at the same time and all off them were intermingled with Sara. This was very effectively done.

The first story line was Sara's test by the blade, which provided Sara the opportunity to visit her past, answer questions and confront three previous "Witchblade" bearers.

The second one was Jake facing the corrupt Captain Dante and making the decision to betray Sara or not. This is not going to be an easy thing for Jake to do, but all the signs are there that it may happen.

Finally, Ian's defiance of Irons. Although Ian is doing it very subtly, he is still taking matters into his own hands and not being as loyal to Irons as he was at the beginning.

Something in this episode really stands out this time. Once again, we see how closely linked Irons and Sara are. This time around, he also feels the pain and anxiety Sara is going through during the test.

Then we find out from Irons that it was he who killed Elizabeth Bronte and the only thing he really wants from Sara is her blood. This is very interesting since at first I thought he wanted "The Witchblade".

Another interesting point is brought forward when Sara and Elizabeth come face to face. We find out from Elizabeth the origin of "The Witchblade", which was from a branch of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. A very interesting concept.

I also liked what Elizabeth Bronte told Sara about time. When Sara questioned her about being her grandmother, Elizabeth said, "I'm not from your past, nor are you from my future. Both of our lifetimes exist right now." This is extremely interesting, the idea that time is not a line, but something more circular.

I really did like the special effects as the "Blade" gradually took over and tied Sara down, especially when Gabriel came knocking and the "Blade" covered Sara's mouth like a hand. That was very cool.

Although this episode did not have many special effects or fight scenes, it did accomplish a few things. It answered some questions regarding why Dante hates Sara so much and where "The Witchblade" comes from. It also defined a bit more the relationship between Ian and Sara and Ian and Irons. It was Irons who "made" Ian.

At the same time that this episode answered some question, it opened up still more questions, especially regarding Ian and Irons' history and why Sara and Iron are so closely tied together. I really hope some of these questions will be answered soon. We are running out of time.



THE COMIC CONNECTION

This commentary is by Nora.

I have wanted to do a commentary about the difference or similarities between the Witchblade comic book and the TV series. As the series is halfway through its freshman season, I thought it would be appropriate to do something now. I plan on getting more and different perspectives on this comparison in the future. But in this commentary I have some perspective from a friend of mine, Chris Diestler, who owns a comic book store in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He and I have discussed the show and the comic book it came from. In our discussions I was very interested in his perspective as a reader of the comic books first then a fan of the show. The following is his perspective on both and sheds a light on how the show is being received by the comic book audience hereto referred to as the fanboys.

I'm actually relieved that, since Marvel's "Blade," makers of comic book movies seem to have finally realized you don't have to exactly follow the comic to have a good show. In fact, if you do follow the comic exactly, you're likely to have a BAD show, because film and comics, while somewhat related at the conceptual stage, are entirely different media in their end product, with different rules, aesthetics and audiences.

With this in mind, I'd like to say a few things about the Top Cow/TNT series "Witchblade." I have been a fan of the comic since it started, several years ago. Heterosexual male that I am, I have to admit it was mostly the fetish-oriented art that interested me at first. I've heard a lot of fanboys complain about the casting of Yancy Butler in the role of Sara Pezzini, saying, "She's not hot enough, waaaaahhh." Well, I vehemently disagree.

First of all, there's no way a TV show with Sara in the Witchblade armor-as drawn in comics by the honorable Mike Turner, Randy Green, Keu Cha, et al - could ever get on the air and even if it did, no one would take it seriously. First off, you'd have to cast some vacuous, busty bimbo that couldn't act her way out of a paper bag (as much as I love Jessica Alba, "Dark Angel" springs to mind), and secondly, even if you could afford the special effects budget necessary to recreate the sentient-metal-bikini-effect on a weekly basis, you'd alienate about half your potential audience (namely, most of the women) and leave the rest with the unhappy chore of trying to like a supernatural detective show that looks like "Baywatch." I think casting Yancy was brilliant, because she has just the right combination of believable good looks and toughness to pull the role off.

I remember last summer at Wizard World in Chicago (a big comic convention) when they screened the movie for us in a neat old theatre, Yancy seemed really nervous about whether or not her portrayal of Sara would play to the fanboys. After the show, as I happened to pass by her in the back alley (we were both smoking), I hollered a compliment along the lines of, "That was pretty sweet," to her and she replied with an enthusiastic, "Thank you very much," seemingly relieved that at least one fanboy enjoyed her in the show. Hopefully, by now, with the series underway and, cross my fingers, about to be renewed, her fears have evaporated completely.

You may have guessed that I'm becoming a huge fan of the show as well as the comic. Though they are two completely different beasts, I think the producers of the show are taking it in the direction it needs to go to be successful on the small screen. The comic's characters and situations have been tweaked, overhauled or downright tossed out, usually for the better. I'm a huge fan of Kenneth Welsh and wish they could've kept him around as Joe Siry for a while, though I'm intrigued by Captain Dante's mysterious agenda. I like that they kept Michael Yee/Danny Woo around as a guardian angel, the interaction between Sara and Jake (largely intact from the comic) and the different spin they give the Witchblade's abilities. The show seems to pay more attention to making Sara's supporting cast interesting. I especially like the addition of the Talismaniac in "Diplopia." Actually now that I think about it, I may be getting to like the show better than the comic. Since that's the highest compliment I can give the show, maybe I'll stop and let you all get back to watching.



LINKS:

Transcript by SciFi_Angel

Screen grabs




Episode
Guide Table of ContentsBack to Whoosh!