I think the more official title for this one is “God Doesn’t Want You To Be Happy, He Wants You To Be Strong” but since that is Panic! at the Disco levels of long for a title, I’m just gonna go with the Netflix listed title, which is “What God Wants”.
This episode starts right where the last one left off – with Letha gone and Peter crying in the attic near Roman’s sickbed. (Peter’s sad because he’s about to battle the vargulf, and because he might have destroyed his relationship with Letha in the course of trying to save her life.)
Roman, of course, chooses that exact moment to wake up from his coma. Peter’s worried that after two weeks of being comatose, Roman might have some blank spots in his memory, but a quick series of flashbacks shows that Roman remembers pretty much everything that led up to his ‘accident’ – most likely including what was in the big shiny box at the Tower, but of course we don’t get to see what’s inside. Damn.
Roman apologizes for his behavior (sort of) before telling Peter that he’s going to help him kill the vargulf whether Peter likes it or not.
They head out in Roman’s awesome car of awesome. Peter’s driving this time (good call, because Roman in his weakened state would probably just crash it into a tree again) and we get a short glimpse of Peter driving like a maniac. Not gonna lie, if I had a bitchin’ car like that I’d probably be speeding too.
We jump over to Chausser looking over some files in her hotel room. She calls her twin brother, Michael, to tell him that she’s leaving the Order after this one last job. Oh, great. If there’s one thing I’ve learned from assassin and heist type movies, it’s that no one ever has ‘just one last job’ – either they keep on doing what they’re doing, or they die in horrible and graphic ways. I get the feeling it’s not going to be the former for Chausser.
Michael pretty much feels the same way, and asks his sister if the Order is going to just let her leave – which of course they aren’t. Chausser asks him to help her, and he promises.
Back with Hemlock’s dynamic duo, Roman and Peter are having a heart to heart where they basically establish their trust in one another again. Roman wants to be Peter’s friend, and that means not letting him be out there alone.
Letha and Shelley, meanwhile, are walking down the hallway together at their high school talking about how much they miss Roman. A little while later, Shelley is in art class when Roman pops up behind a nearby window, grinning. She ditches class to meet with him, and they have a joyful reunion. He asks Shelley not to tell their mother because he “has to do something first” – um, don’t you think Olivia is going to notice when she goes up to visit you and your bed is empty, Roman?
After their short conversation, Roman leaves Shelley alone again. Poor Shelley. As Roman heads back to his car, we hear a radio broadcasting of a reporter interviewing Sheriff Sworn, who announces that there’s now going to be a curfew for all minors after sundown.
Jump over to Olivia Godfrey, who is walking into Roman’s room with a tray of tea and snacks with Roman nowhere to be found. Just like I predicted, because I am all-seeing and all-knowing.
Olivia is confused at first, but quickly realizes what Roman’s up to when she sees the full moon shining in the window. She then sums him up perfectly in exactly three words: “That little shit.”
Elsewhere in town, Chasseur is existing a gun and ammo shop when she gets a call from Enigmatic Priest Man, who tells her that he got a disconcerting phone call from her brother, Michael. Uh-oh, looks like Michael totally ratted her out. Chasseur does her best to reassure Priest Dude that everything is hunky-dory.
She then drives straight to where Sheriff Sworn is lecturing the Hemlock Police Department on where their posts are for that night. The Sheriff is once again fed up with Chasseur showing up uninvited. The fact that she’s showing up to tell him that she’s leaving town just makes him more suspicious and confused.
Over at Hemlock Acres, Dr. Norman Godfrey is visiting Christina in her hospital room. Their meeting is a short one, and when he leaves to go home for the night, he runs into the Sheriff in the halls, who asks after Christina’s well-being.
Roman and Peter have reconvened at the steel mill ruins, where they’re going to wait out Peter’s transformation so he can scent out the vargulf with his wolfy senses. It’s gonna be a long wait, so they talk through a few important topics Letha and Peter (where Peter confirms he loves her, aww) and Roman’s coma (where Roman says he gets the feeling there’s something big he has to do but he doesn’t know what).
Meanwhile, the Sheriff is pacing anxiously in his home with his twin daughters on lockdown upstairs. The girls, Alyssa and Alexa Sworn, have a pretty hilarious conversation which includes the best and most creative dig at Nickelback I’ve heard in a long time.
The hilarity of the scene turns heartwarming when their dad comes in to check on them, and the girls give him a bear hug as they tell him that “Mom sees what you do for us.” Awww.
But naturally, because this is not the kind of story where good things happen to female characters, the girls end up getting attacked by the vargulf in their own home while the Sheriff is outside investigating some weird noises. By the time he gets back, they’re both dead.
Jumping back over to Roman and Peter at the ruins – when Peter turns, Chausser is waiting right on top of rafters for him with a sniper rifle and a ketamine tranquilizer. She incapacitates Peter easily, and dismisses Roman’s protests by telling him that Peter is “not your friend, he’s not even a person.”
Chasseur makes him Roman leave by putting a knife to Peter’s werewolf neck and threatening to kill him. Her parting words for him are the title of the episode: “God doesn’t want you to be happy, he wants you to be strong.” The camera pans away slightly to reveal Olivia Godfrey hiding behind a pillar; she heard everything.
Once she’s done packing Peter away into his cage, Chasseur makes a phone call to the Priest, who tells her not to kill Peter – to bring him back to the Order, instead. Though she agrees to do so, the instant she hangs up her phone she pulls a knife out and prepares to kill Peter, what she describes as “saving him”. That’s when Olivia makes her move, using her eye magic power to render Chasseur powerless even as she shoots her gun at Olivia.
The next morning, two little kids walking in the woods find Chasseur’s truck left abandoned in the woods, the cage in the back empty and the truck’s owner missing. Michael waits for his sister by their agreed upon spot, but she never shows.
Comments + Verdict
The first two-thirds of the episode dragged a lot. I got the point – it was trying to build up suspense and tension so that the final act of the hour would have the full impact of What The Fuck-ness, but that didn’t carry across too well, especially since the final ten minutes didn’t deliver the punch it could have.
I’m going to miss the snarky bitchiness of the Sworn twins, and I’m already mourning the loss of Chausser from this show – she was my favorite of everyone. Why, Hemlock Grove?! Why?
Chasseur: I can’t say this has been an easy one, but in the words of the immortal Hank Williams, “I’ve seen the light.”
Chasseur: Trust the feeling in your gut. This thing we’re after, it’s not anywhere near done.
Sheriff Sworn: Okay, besides the obvious, I have no idea what the hell any of that means.
Shelley: Will [Roman] be alright?
Olivia: …It’s a pity you don’t drink.
Alexa: Gun to your head, Steve Berna or Luke Vezetti?
Alyssa: Um, the bullet.
Alexa: Gun to Christina’s head.
Alyssa: …Luke Vezetti.
Alexa: Ew, what?!
Alyssa: Okay, you know what? Steve always has a yellow stain around his armpit and then I’d have to listen to him rank Nickelback albums.