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See - Last 4 episodes & Series Finale - Review

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The House of Enlightenment

This then, was an exciting, action-packed spectacle that introduces the concept of guns into the equation and escalates the stakes in the military angle to another level with the concept of the base under siege; trapping our heroes in one place and cornering them.

The bait and switch of the double crossing that Harlan pulled off was somewhat predictable but it was emotional all the same; an effective send-off as he revealed he quite liked his old life. The stubborn reunion between Baba Voss and Harlan explored the uneasy bond between the two that has become a mutual respect for another.

The fight sequences in the House itself were excellent; I really liked how everything came together and the show couldn’t resist dropping a contemporary needle drop – good to know Welcome to the Jungle survived the apocalypse. See’s strength has always been its choreography, and the combat excels here – perfect. There were flashes where you think Baba Voss is fighting as though he can see but that’s more down to a practicality side of things, it’s always fascinating to see this show approach combat from the perspective of blind characters – I loved the little touches like the soldiers holding each other to move in groups; and now the gun changes things instantly. It’s a massive; massive gamechanger – Haniwa’s ears are appropriately shellshocked and showcases the fiery power of the ancient ones.

It takes some time for her to get used to it; but she almost ends up killing Kofun – turning on her own brother, when the books in the House are burned down at the end of the episode. It’s a deeply tragic moment with all that lost knowledge – but from the perspective of Kofun and Baba Voss, all it’s done is make bombs and guns – weapons that can bring about the end of the world. I like that Kofun and Haniwa aren’t just carbon copies of one another; both clearly developing different personalities and their own arcs as proper brother and sister – the children of Baba Voss are as just as integral part of the show as he is.

Seeing the little father/son bonding moments between Kofun and Baba Voss were fleeting but appreciated; loved Baba’s reaction to the godflame here in the form of electricity. Seeing Wren leave the children to safety benefiting from sight was a nice touch; these characters clearly have the upper hand but the soldiers they’re fighting are well trained and well marshalled. It’s not an easy situation to be in – and whilst they’ve escaped this army; it’s temporary. The Trevantians are unstoppable. And now the deposed Maghra has marshalled her Witchfinders again – intent on taking back her throne. Once again; has a character claimed greater plot armour than Sibeth? That’s not a complaint – I really love the batshit energy her character brings to the table. It isn’t over yet!

The Lowlands

The Lowlands picks things up by marching headfirst towards an endgame that looks to have put the pieces in place for a finale of a epic proportions. Sibeth, now with her Witchfinders, has united with the Trevantians in search of weapons – the enemy of her enemy is her friend and all that, and Sibeth knows how to play to the strength of Tormada, knowing a mark when she sees one. Identifying people she can manipulate and then manipulating them is like watching peak Robben cut inside the flank and score for Bayern – you know it’s going to happen but there’s little you can do to stop it.

The introduction of the cannibal-like force in the car graveyards was an exciting argument that this was the closest to a case of the week episode yet; initially six of them – but even six Baba Voss was questioning whether or not they could defeat them. That’s the great unknown of this world, they don’t know what their enemy looks like. It could be anyone. What followed was some insanely brutal combat that saw Wren captured – but Haniwa rescue her only to be taken in turn. It was frantic, chaotic, and the best kind of action.

Harlan was able to rescue Haniwa but at the cost of his own life in a bloody, brutal way – which sets up a reunion between Maghra and Baba Voss. It almost feels cruel to lose Harlan after everything he’s been through but he was always going to be in the way of that no matter what side he fell on – I had the feeling that the writers have written a numerous amount of endings for him. But letting him go out saving Haniwa was a nice completion of his redemption arc.

Maghra and Tamacti Jun also got their hands dirty this episode and Maghra recognising that she needs to stoop as low as her sister will almost certainly be a key plot point later on, if it’s not already – Tamacti Jun massacring his own former Witchfinders only to learn that most of them have rallied behind Sibeth is a testament as to just how clever Sibeth has been.

God Thunder

And this was the build-up, the culmination of all that promise. Sibeth rallying the troops for an all-out invasion on the seat of power; a devastating blow to Maghra’s rule. We open with the initial flashbacks to how Maghra and Baba Voss met, poking fun at each other’s names – and now, cut to the present – a city on flames. Fire from the skies is unimaginable to even those who can see but to those who can’t, god thunder – a powerful, devastating weapon – rips the city in two, hitting the major targets of destruction and almost killing Maghra.

It's all-out war. Baba Voss is too late to stop it – they sent Kofun on ahead to act as a scout, but he’s captured by Sibeth and her army – and Sibeth uses him first as a witness to the destruction of the bombs, then as a messenger – he wants Maghra to come to Sibeth, and return all of the wrongs dealt out by her. Tormada is smart in the sense that he knows Sibeth will turn on him eventually, but Tormada plans to turn on her first – and do that by recruiting Kofun, who’s not having any of it – but lesser men than Tormada have thought they could better Sibeth, and lesser men have failed.

The penultimate episode of the series ensures us that See still knows how to go out with a bang: the showrunners could’ve easily killed off Maghra if they still wanted to – but for now at least, she’s forced to live and bury the guilt of the consequences of her actions that have led her to this path, letting the witchfinders live, let Sibeth live – this is all instruments of her own making. Now her former army is watching her own city; but at least Harlan has a plan – and a way out, even from beyond the grave – a clandestine tunnel network spread throughout the city.

I See You

And then, the finale: a big, grand operatic clash that basically gave it as satisfying an ending as a show like See could. The reunion between Maghra and Sibeth was inevitable; but Maghra finally had the courage to do what Sibeth could not even at the last, and kill her – the tragic end between the two sisters that have been such a focal point of this series. It’s a fascinating end to their story that sees Maghra now reduced to walking among her people as a watcher; still Queen – but of a ruined city.

Baba Voss went out the only way that Baba Voss was ever going to – blowing up the bombs and taking himself out in a grand, heroic gesture. It was pretty intense watching Baba and Ranger infiltrate the camp that was only ever going to end one way – yet See has always revelled in its combat sequences – this was always going to be entertaining. The finale gave to mind the grand last stands of the westerns and war movies of old; and Baba going out in a triumphant but ultimately doomed way was always on the cards – leaving his children to pick up the pieces.

Haniwa marries Wren but reactions to people with sight from those who can’t see still haven’t changed – and they both leave the city, stumbling across a library of the sighted. It’s a touching moment and a direct counterpoint to Kofun’s choice to give up his sight – he knows he’ll live in a different world from that of his son – unless he robs himself of his sight voluntarily. It’s the hardest of hard choices, but Kofun has grown used to the role of the father now – and it’s a choice that even Baba Voss would have made were he in a similar position.

And so See ends on a satisfying note that’s about as much as anyone could’ve asked for: sight is coming back to the world, but the people aren’t quite ready for the change yet. The climactic battle was never going to be the end and an easy way out – and there was never going be a deus ex machina ending for this show. Baba’s death was the closest that he got.

Season 3 then was largely a high note for the series – had a slow start but quickly put the pieces together and gave an effective conclusion that means that this show ends on a stronger note than it began – culminating with an effective conclusion that leaves television as a weaker place for its absence, in an age of franchise television, we need all the original shows that we can get. That said – do I think the finale was a bit rushed with half a season wrapped up into one episode; I do – but given the material that the writers had to work with I think this was about as a strong a finale as we could have expected. Farewell Baba Voss, you’ll be missed.

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