We thought we'd never get another pairing to replace Myka Bering and H.G. Wells, but Warehouse 13 has come through again. The team-up of Kate Mulgrew's regent, Jane, with Myka Bering was utterly perfect — and that's before they started joking about being Thema and Louise.
I would seriously watch a few episodes of Myka and Jane teaming up — for some reason, Myka just does really well with female authority figures, or more experienced women. I'm not saying I want to see Myka date Pete's mom, although the conversations would be pretty interesting if she did. But Myka just feels a lot more interesting, as a character, when she's bonding with other women who are her age or older. (So, not Claudia, in other words.) Myka's scenes with Mrs. Frederic have always been fascinating for the same reason.
Until the shock revelation at the very end of the episode — which I almost missed, because the credits started to swallow it — I thought Jane Lattimer was being set up to be sort of the new version of Mark Sheppard's Benedict Valda. Another important Regent who hangs around and dispenses wisdom and/or correction as needed. And I was totally okay with that. It was obvious she was going to be an important character, because she was played by a name actor, she made an instant connection with Myka... and then she got the magic shackle that makes her the Warehouse's final safeguard in case of emergencies. (How is Jane's role as the Warehouse's Guardian different from Mrs. Frederic's, since she has some kind of elemental connection to the Warehouse as well?)
The final revelation about Jane being Pete's mom — I had thought the references to her as Jane Lattimer in online materials were just a misprint! — was sort of random and soap opera-y, to be sure, but I'm willing to wait and see how it pans out. This is a show about the Warehouse as a family, so it seems a bit excessive to make that literal in Pete's case — but given how much we've heard lately about Pete's abandonment issues and his messed-up childhood, I guess this is taking it to the next level. But if the Evil Overlord in the wheelchair turns out to be Pete's dad, then I'm through.
Meanwhile, Warehouse 13 continued its recent trend of treating artifacts as objects of power, which can be horribly misused in the wrong hands — or even the right hands. We're slowly starting to delve into the implications of a world where all sorts of random knick knacks can be used to kill or undermine people, and that means going a bit more into spy thriller-territory. Which is not at all a bad thing. The cat-and-mouse game, with the Warehouse agents tracking down Sally, Pete and Claudia chasing after Aquino, and Artie and Myka getting the Regents out of the death trap, was all pretty terrific, thanks to some snappy pacing and some ingenious use of artifacts. And Claudia's Tesla grenade, as well as her stint as the faux car-GPS, were new additions to our long long list of reasons to love Claudia.
And then... there was the whole torture thing, with Mrs. Frederic randomly showing up to try and squeeze information out of Evil Sally. I'm generally super opposed to TV shows trying to be deep and/or controversial with the whole "When is it okay to torture someone" thing. However, at least this version had a few things going for it. First, Steve Jinks made the point that torture never elicits reliable information (although he, as the human lie-detector, is the one person you'd want to have in a torture-based interrogation, so he kind of nullifies that point.) Second, the torture clearly did not do any good in this instance, and served more to raise questions about Mrs. Frederic than it did to glorify "unusual" interrogation techniques. And third, Mrs. Frederic was at least right that there was a way to neutralize the artifact, and reverse some of the damage it had caused — and Sally might conceivably have known about it.
So who was the guy in the wheelchair at the end? Did Blofeld finally emerge from hiding? (And if so, what happened to his cat? This show really needs an evil cat.)