Primeval – Series 4, Episode 5

Observant readers will have noticed that this review is late, and that I should have posted episode six[1]’s review by now, but as I haven’t actually watched that one yet, you’ll have to put up with this delayed one. So there.

As usual, there are more things going on at once than seems reasonable, so bits of this may appear out of order to reduce confusion. My confusion, that is.

Anyway, this episode seemed to be having a bit of fun with some films. It started with a bit of the old Blair Witch stuff, with a young man in a tent and no video camera skills apparently waiting to spot the local monster, which far from being mythical, turns up and eats him.

And so it goes with the usual multiple plot threads…

At the ARC, Philip tries to persuade Connor to come for him and work on his own private, secret and probably evil anomaly team at his company, Prospero.

Matt has told James Lester about the slight problem he’s been having with Emily and Ethan.

Then there’s an anomaly alert, only this one’s a bit funny as the signal seems a bit unstable. What with Becker still being a bit unwell after the previous episode, and the budget for disposable soldiers being exhausted, or some such, Abby and Connor head off to investigate the anomaly location, which is of course the coastal location with the Blair Witch vibe. In the local pub, it all gets a bit American Werewolf in London, with the locals divided between those who think the Wyrm got the young man with the camera, and those who don’t believe there is any such thing. They’re all united in giving the strangers the traditional strange looks, of course.

While Matt, who has turned up to join in the fun finds the remains of the dead guy’s camp, Connor and Abby investigate a seriously dodgy looking farm. Keeping up with the blatant movie references, Connor mentions that all the place needs is

a weird kid sitting on a porch playing a banjo..

What they actually get is a crazy old farm lady with a big pitchfork and a nice line in “gerroff my land” behaviour.

More fun follows with Matt being followed, finding some bits of a dead angler, meeting the Wyrm, which turns out to be a Labryrinthodon, Connor going to investigate the unstable anomaly, Abby having fun in a caravan park with the creature and all the usual running around.

Matt heads off to help Emily, having been alerted to the presence of the tracking device she borrowed from his flat. She’s having a bit of a rough ride in the boot of a car that Ethan is having no problem driving, suggesting that he’s not from the nineteenth century after all[2]. He’s clearly a bit upset wherever and whenever he’s from, as he wants to give his late friend Charlotte a proper burial, having brought her ashes along in a shiny container.

It was more or less at this point that the episode was interrupted by an ad break that rather than being wall to wall furniture shops[3] included one for some medical product that claimed to help when you’re in the dreadful position of having

nasal congestion and a blocked nose

which is presumably a common problem for the two-nosed members of the audience , but there I go, digressing again. Back to the story:

The bit in the cemetery gets a bit nasty, as Emily drops her tracker before Ethan pops her into a tomb and mentioning that he wants to track down his family, and not so they can have a nice chat and catch up on who’s been doing what. Matt catches up with him and they have a slight disagreement, during which Ethan does the usual sinister bit of hinting that he knows more about what’s going on than anyone else does, but he’s not telling, so there. Anyway, Matt finds Emily and does the appropriate heroic rescue bit.

Meanwhile, Abby’s trapped without a zap gun in a camper van with an irritated creature on top. Connor’s in a cave where someone has put a gate in front of the more flickery than usual anomaly. Oh, and there’s some kind of acid dripping into the cave, which is apparently reacting with stuff in the cave in an electrolytical way, which is why the anomaly is unstable. It seems the crazy pitchfork lady and her son have been removing the dye from red diesel (which farmers can get a lot cheaper than normal fuel, but can’t use it for cars) so they can sell it at a profit. As they think that the ARC crew are investigating them, they’re trying to dump the evidence, which leads to them finding Connor in the cave and pointing guns at him.

Abby, having been told where the anomaly is, drives off with the creature on the roof, only to crash on the way (building a bit more tension there). Creature runs off, and Abby turns up just in time to heroically save Connor. The diesel-cheating locals are eaten, the creature and its baby (which was in the cave) go through the anomaly, and everyone (apart from those who’ve been eaten) is happy.

Matt has another meeting with the increasingly frail Gideon, who now thinks that Ethan is the cause of whatever it is that’s upsetting him.

Connor declines Philip’s job offer, but agrees to do some part-time research for him at the ARC, which Philip warns him has to be kept completely confidential, which is obviosuly going to work well…

So, it was another good fun episode, with the multiple ongoing storylines developing in a suitably confusing manner. Will all be made clear in the final two episodes of this run, or will there be a honking big cliffhanger? My money (metaphorically speaking) is on the latter, but I’ll let you know when I catch up with last week’s and this week’s episodes…

[1] And indeed episode seven. Coming soon, probably.
[2] At this point, if it was revealed that he was from a small planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse, I wouldn’t be altogether surprised
[3] It looks like 90% of ads on ITV are for furniture