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Beauty and the Beast - Episode 2.13 - Till Death - Review

This was a great episode, but man, did it pour on the crazy sauce!  A convoluted series of events twisted the Vincent/Cat/Gabe triangle in all different directions while again raising questions about Gabe's potential villainy.  Although, like last week, I wasn't thrilled with the way the episode ended, there's no denying the emotional potency of the darker direction that Season 2 is still heading in.  That's not to say there weren't some adorable, funny, and hopeful moments in the mix, too.  

Due to the knife twist that was Vincent's longing for Cat and his attempts to promote her happiness at the cost of his own, we'll eventually have some lyrics from Matt Cardle's "Not Over You" to guide this review.

Cat ran into Gabe down in the dungeons where Tori died last week, and he was tracing the beast-scratches in the wall like a total sketchbomb.  When confronted by his kind-of-girlfriend, Gabe announced that he was just down there to give her coffee because they haven't seen enough of each other lately.  Don't worry, Gabe!  Whenever Cat wants to see more of someone, she just loops them into an investigation she's working on.  Anyway, in the course of this discussion, Cat had a weird "flash" of Gabe back when he was in full beast mode, threatening her last season.  

 As unpredictable and inscrutable as some of these developments are, they definitely keep the suspense level high throughout the episodes.  Have Cat's memories of Gabe's evil days been repressed by some outside means, or has she been wilfully repressing them?  Either way, she has to try not to dwell on what he did last year, or he starts to seem incredibly suspicious all over again.  Hence, much of what was in this episode.

Vincent was adorably intent on hanging out on his couch, trying to stay out of trouble after the virtual Troubleacocalpyse he got enmeshed in last week.  J.T. dropped some more wisdom bombs on Vincent as to why he needs to get back out there, reminding his bestie that Tori's death wasn't his fault, and fully supporting a potential reunion with Catherine.  

Meanwhile, an awesome J.T./Tess subplot begin to emerge as he ordered a ridiculously ornate Valentine's flower arrangement to be sent to the station, from "a secret admirer."  J.T.'s "seize the day" mentality seemed to spur Vincent into a more contemplative mode regarding Cat.  And by the way, did J.T.'s fantastic speech comparing Tori to Les Miserables' Eponine make anyone else suspect that the writers modeled the character on this tragic heroine?  

The good news is that Vincent at least admits that he still has feelings for Cat. That, paired with their intense chemistry, foreshadows a return to VinCat. The bad news is obviously that she's still denying her own emotions towards him, and that leaves them at a difficult impasse.  

"When I look in the mirror
It's difficult to believe
That the man in the mirror
Staring back at me
Is blinded by the truth

I'm not over you.*"

Tess and Cat got blindsided by the new boss, who quickly noted their low number of closed cases and demanded that they start doing a better job immediately.  It was good to see a more traditional chief back at the station after the way Gabe came in and let Cat and Tess do whatever they wanted for so many months.  That has to have consequences, as convenient as it was at the time.  

Despite the need to pursue NYPD business, Cat zapped right back to Dana and Sam's side like a magnet, because she just can't let go of her beastly investigations - I wonder why.  After discussing Sam and Dana's vow renewal and the ongoing search for the true kingpin of the recent beast-related crimes, Cat called Gabe to ask him to get a search warrant for a suspect.  Lying about his whereabouts while having his picture taken somewhere, Gabe was once again being sketchy as hell.  I had to wonder if he was having a fake I.D. made for some nefarious purpose, but later we learned that he was planning a surprise trip to Mexico for Catherine and was getting his passport renewed.  Hurmph.

Cat continued to feel uncomfortable and not entirely trusting towards Gabe, which certainly took her long enough (even though he's totally cute and I'm thoroughly entertained by his sketchiness).  So the best possible idea was clearly to get Vincent involved.  Ha!  I love the way Catherine thinks nothing of continuously having Vincent all up in her grill while she's supposedly pursuing a romance with Gabe.  It's outrageously inappropriate and fabulous.

After assuring her that Gabe is no villain and majorly overcompensating in saying that Gabe is a boyscout compared with himself, Vincent got embroiled in a long heart-to-heart where he encouraged Catherine to get past her emotional roadblocks and trust hang-ups, and simply believe that Gabe is who he presents himself to be.  Obviously, Vincent feels responsible for Cat's trust problems and her inability to commit to a new love.  However, he should also realize that Gabe should feel more responsible for Cat's trust issues, and that the real reason why she's having commitment issues...is that she still loves Vincent.

This quote from Vincent killed me: "Yes, I love her.  Enough to let her be with someone worthy."  The depth of Vincent's guilt and his willingness, noted by Cat, to make everything his own fault, is somehow masking Gabe's own problematic nature from his view of the situation.

"If you need somebody
While you're playing solitaire
Just let me be that body
Even though you're in repair
I think you feel it, too
I'm not over you"*

The scene with Cat and Gabe's kiss interrupted by a feral Vincent, who slammed Gabe against the wall and pinned him by his throat, is a total insta-classic.  It's about time we saw some overt aggression between these two, even though Vincent later stepped down after Gabe insisted on his innocence.  Didn't we already establish that Gabe is capable of concealing certain things from beasts?  So do we buy that his heartbeat is always going to be a trustworthy lie detector?

Well, Gabe was off the hook this time, since the evidence began to pile up against Sam Landon (poor Dana!), making it apparent that Sam had framed Gabe.  This was a good twist, as Tom Everett Scott's seemingly sweet persona eventually fell away to reveal a cruel and manipulative villain willing to set a bomb off at his own vow renewal to get rid of a few loose ends.  

The absurdity with which Gabe proceeded to act all haughty and offended by Catherine's suspicions of him was through the roof.  Come on, man, I love ya, but when you try to kill someone, it's going to take more than a few months to fully redeem yourself.  He's lucky Cat gives him the time of day at all!

Speaking of the vow renewal, more classic moments ensued on the way to the bombshell reveal.  First, J.T. crowed that VinCat "look like Brangelina!", hilariously irritating Gabe.  Then Vincent and Gabe found the bomb and, in an insanely awkward scene that brought out all of the tension between them, came up with a plan to learn more about Sam's motives by letting him believe his evil plot had at least partially succeeded.

I loved the last conversation between Vincent and J.T. and the continued bonding between them, even though Vincent came to the depressing conclusion that his "window of opportunity" to be with Cat has closed.  And then there was the beautifully heart-wrenching moment of Vincent looking through the window at Gabe and Cat kissing.

Sigh.  On one level, this angst was gorgeously portrayed and made for moving and compelling television.  There was practically smoke emanating from Vincent due to how hot he was in that moment.  On another level, though, I'm more than ready to get past all the VinCat problems and Cat/Gabe anytime now.

"I should have been the one 
To make you happy
But I didn't pass the test
Just like all the rest

And every time I cry
I hear you laughing
Though I wish you all the best

It doesn't hurt any less"*

While VinCat didn't get a happy ending this week, with Cat oddly clinging to this attempt to be with Gabe, J.T. and Tess had a charming conversation about his Valentine's gifts.  It was awesome that he made up a supposedly closed case to help Tess keep her job, which meant more to her than the delightfully silly flowers ever could.  The vibe between J.T. and Tess is so pleasant and cute that it lightened up the episode after some bleak VinCat scenes.  Earlier in the episode, when Cat and Tess came over to see J.T. and Vincent, the furtive looks between both couples reinforced the way the two pairings nicely complement each other.  When VinCat reunite, I could see some amusingly doomed double dates being planned!

What did you think of this week's episode?  Share your thoughts in the comments!

*lyrics are taken from the song "Not Over You" by Matt Cardle.

About the Author - Virginia Mae Fontana
Virginia is happy to be reviewing Hart of Dixie, The Mentalist, Beauty and the Beast, Bones, Witches of East End, Covert Affairs, and Devious Maids for Spoiler TV. She is a college English instructor and also enjoys obsessing over films and pop music - in addition to tv shows, of course! You can find her blog, SugarRushed, at http://virginiamaeblog.blogspot.com/ and her Twitter handle is @SugarRushedBlog