Rather than backsliding into another “mystery of the week” pattern, it looks as if the Beelzebub’s Skull arc and it’s aftermath were the beginning of the final arc after all – it’s just taking some time to come together. It now looks as if any mysteries we have will be directly tied into the big one, the coming storm and Victorique’s role in it. And the Marquis de Blois certainly looks like the final boss.
In many ways this may have been the darkest ep of the series so far, though to be sure it’s never shied away from showing us the evil that men do. But this really cranked up to eleven with Coredila’s backstory. The poor girl was an innocent can-can dancer, minding her own business and drawing legions of fans in “The Blue Rose of Saubere”, when de Blois appears out of nowhere. After accosting her on stage and identifying her as a Gray Wolf (which probably should have set off more caution in her than it did) he kidnaps her off the street after her performance, just as she’s to meet a red-haired lad named Brian.
There’s no glossing over what happened next. He raped her, held her prisoner and impregnated her with the daughter she gave birth to on Christmas night, before abandoning her on the street. She winds up in a mental hospital, where the redhead finds her – and thus begins what looks to me a fascinating partnership on-stage and off. They have many common goals – not least the hatred of de Blois and the Ministry of the Occult – though in one area they strongly differ. Brian professes to loathe Victorique and curse her birth for what it represents, while Cordelia has only love for her child. I haven’t decided if their partnership is one of convenience or if there’s real affection there, but it certainly seems like an interesting pair.
Most of the ep is told from Cordelia’s POV, and it’s interesting how little she appears to be driven by hatred despite her horrific treatment. Indeed, she seems to care only for helping Victorique realize her potential – while for Brian, this is obviously a quest for revenge. de Blois’ motives still aren’t perfectly clear in terms of Victorique – he speaks of a child with “The power to purge foulness…to break up the storm…” The storm must surely be WW II, but Victorique’s precise role is still obscured. For now, as part of her ascendance, de Blois has yanked her out of school yet again to solve the greatest mystery of Saubere – the Coco Rose Case. Alas, this comes down at the very moment Kujo has hitched a ride with Sophie to go shopping for Victorique’s Christmas (and birthday) present. So it looks as if in the next episode we’ll be treated to Kujo racing off to find her again.
I can’t shake the feeling that the finale will turn on Greville having to choose between his father and half-sister… But that’s still several eps away, and we’ve at least one more mystery to solve in the meantime. As good as this ep was, I did miss the Victorique-Kujo interaction, which was totally absent. It’s the best part of this series, but at least we’ll get another touching reunion scene as a result of this additional separation.