It’s been a while since the end of the second season (not counting the Christmas special), but “Warehouse 13” hits the ground running with an episode that manages to resolve some issues while introducing a few new wrinkles. Oh, and it’s also a rather well-constructed introduction to the series for new viewers.
That’s because the second season ended with Myka disenchanted with her role in the Warehouse, and taking a leave of absence of sorts. This means the gang is short-staffed, and they are quickly overloaded by the constant madness of artifacts and such. Enter the new agent, Steve Jinks, who has the ability to tell if someone is lying. Pete struggles with the notion of working with a new partner while dealing with a case in Denver, which just happens to lend itself to consulting with Myka before all is said and done.
The cast is spot-on in this episode. Agent Jinks is a natural addition to the team, and despite the circumstances, he doesn’t feel like much of an intrusion at all. If anything, it continues the process that worked so well in the second season: bringing in new characters that can shake up the typical dynamic. Where Claudia’s enhanced role brought youthful energy to the entire production, Jinks brings a certain zen to balance it out.
Considering that I thought Pete’s banter was getting over the top in the second season, sometimes to the detriment of the show, I like the idea of Jinks being a more serene foil. Myka had gotten to the point where she fostered his mania, rather than balancing it, so the new dynamic should hopefully keep things more moderated. This episode is a perfect example; Pete is still very much Pete, but this felt less like Eddie McClintock doing improv than delivering a solid performance. (Though the in-joke about his tendency to go off-script was perfect!)
Not only did the episode manage to resolve Myka’s personal issues (along with a guest appearance by H.G. Wells!), but they had some solid action in the Warehouse and introduced a new villain or two in a most clever fashion. Everything worked so well that I’m almost sorry to raise one minor criticism. As much as loved watching Alison Scagliotti coo over the Prius while in character, the product placement was a bit intrusive. (It’s not as notoriously in-your-face as the Degree placements on “Eureka” a couple years back, but it’s close!)
All told, this could very well be my favorite episode of the series to date. It took all of the elements that I liked about the series thus far and made them better. I’m excited to see how they continue to use the cast to switch things up over the course of the season, and this new foe should prove interesting. With “Eureka” continuing to hit it out of the park, it’s great to see “Warehouse 13” still holding its own.
Final Rating: 9/10