A busy premiere week means lots of series to post about, so unfortunately, I did not get to Warehouse 13‘s season finale until earlier today. It seems I always forget about the series, but no matter what, it’s always an enjoyable hour of television and actually fairly potent as the second half of the finale. “Reset” is less action-packed than last week’s first half, but instead decides to focus on the emotional issues of the characters. And by the episode’s end, as the tears are flowing, I realized that the series has come a long way during season two.
Warehouse 13 isn’t a great television series, that’s for sure. The first season and a good part of this season was goofy as heck. The special effects are unbelievably cheesy and the plots are wholly familiar. This is all true. But throughout this season, the series was able to make the bonds between Pete, Myka, Artie and Claudia seem even tighter and even more crucial to the series that suddenly, Warehouse 13 was telling stories about a great, albeit dysfunctional family. It’s like there was an apparent change in how plots developed or how the characters interacted with one another, but there has been more than just goofy charm permeating through the last half-dozen episodes.
And so the choice to make the events of “Reset” break Pete’s heart, nearly kill Artie and force Myka to quit, all the while bringing nearly every main character, including Ms. Fredic to tears, is actually the smartest and most effective thing the series could have done as finales go. The stakes are never too high on Warehouse 13, even in this episode when the newly villainous, but not really too villainous H.G. Wells tries to create a new ice age, but the emotional stakes feel real in “Reset.”
I’ve wondered all season what the true point of Myka and Archie’s growing-closer relationship is, and it all makes sense now. When Myka realizes that she basically convinced everyone that H.G. was sane, particularly Artie, any consequences were on her. So when H.G. ends up being kind of psycho, the mountain of trust and care created all season between Myka and Artie goes away — at least in Myka’s mind. She suspects that no one will ever be able to trust her again, she feels like can’t trust herself. So she writes a gushy note and leaves the Warehouse seemingly for good while everyone else sets around and cries. This is a plot that’s as old as can be and we know that Myka will be back on the team next year because the Warehouse needs her just as it needs Pete. But while Pete figured that out with his deterioration relationship with Kelly, Myka needs to figure that out on her own.
Like I mentioned, Pete’s relationship with Kelly falls apart when under the spell of an artifact sent to her by H.G., she tries to kill him. He attempts to tell her the truth about the Warehouse, but she refuses to let him and moves away. He wants to quit, but Myka sets him right. Again, we knew this relationship was going nowhere as soon as the “You can only tell 1” beat was introduced. We know that Pete’s going to end up with Myka, even if she calls him her brother now. That’s how these things work. But the series did a nice job in making me buy into Pete’s relationship with Kelly and Pete’s desire for something real in his life.
Artie and Claudia don’t have full stories themselves this week, but once Artie gets shot by, well, himself (thanks to a nice artifact use by H.G.), the two of them share what’s perhaps the best emotional moment the series has done to this point. At this point, Artie is Claudia’s father and she can’t stand to see him almost die again, so much so that she burst into tears even though his injury isn’t that severe. It’s a quiet moment, but it’s not over-played and a prime example of why this series is so much improved.
As for the conclusion to the H.G. Wells story, meh. It could have been better and eventually feels anti-climatic that we spent all season getting to know her just to have her go off the deep end, not to get her daughter back, but teach our culture a lesson for destroying the planet. I guess in the end, the character served more of a purpose for Myka’s development than anything else, and in that respect, I’ll go with the resolution.
In general, this season was about Pete, who was initially more charmed by the Warehouse, finding life outside of it, while Myka, who was a little more skeptical, tried to get closer to its zaniness. In the end, they were both wrong and they’ll have to deal with the consequences. And going into this season, I wouldn’t have believed Warehouse 13 could even tell that complex of a story (even though it’s not that complex). So although I probably forget about the series until Syfy starts running ads next June, I’ll be very happy to see Warehouse 13 come back. It’s more than what it was, and these are four people (Leena doesn’t count, for anything. Just go away.) that I will always want to spend time with and actually care about.