A man is walking through the sewer system in Portland. He empties his bag of what look to be silver serving pieces into a barrel and heads out again. He breaks into a house and begins loading his bag with silver candlestick holders, a tea set, and other valuables when he hears voices outside. A cab has pulled up in front of the house he’s in, and a young man comes to the door, his phone ringing. He pauses to answer it and speak to his mother as he opens the front door. Once inside, he confirms that his parents will be home the next day – and then he notices the mess the house is in. He hears a noise and turns to see a huge man behind him. He runs to the kitchen and grabs a knife, but the large man easily knocks it out of his hand and then knocks him down. The large man woges and attacks.
Back in Vienna, Adalind is brought in to meet with Eric’s successor, a second cousin named Viktor. The new Prince makes it clear that he wants her to continue providing legal services to the Royal Family… and more intimate services to him, as she did for Eric. He tells her that he’s determined to bring down those behind Eric’s assassination, and he believes it had something to do with what happened when Eric was in Portland. As Adalind is very familiar with Portland, he asks her to get him a list of anyone in Portland she thinks might have been involved in Eric’s death.
Nick and Hank arrive at the house and are stunned by the scene. The young man’s arm has been ripped completely out of the socket, and there’s blood on the ceiling. The killer left behind huge boot prints – Hank says they’re larger than a 15 – and Nick says he wonders if they’re dealing with a Siegbarste again, a Wesen that Hank remembers very well. They quickly discover that there have been a number of home robberies in the area recently, but at the others no one was home. Hank goes out to check with some pawn shops for any of the stolen items while Nick goes to talk to the M.E. She tells him that the actual cause of death was a broken neck, and he’d been given such a strong shaking that his neck was broken, he had multiple fractures and a subdermal hematoma as well as having his arm torn off.
Workers are checking on the sewer, as there seems to be a blockage somewhere. Jimmy suits up and is lowered down into the sewers where he reports back to his co-worker, Charlie, on the street. He finds a large tree branch that’s causing the blockage and tells Charlie he’ll need a chainsaw, but then he hears a noise. He tells Charlie he’s going to check it out and walks further into the tunnels. He reaches a section where a green moss is covering the walls and wonders what it is when he’s attacked. Jimmy starts yelling and the rope holding him is pulled completely out of the winch. Charlie orders the other worker to get him up, and the man works the winch as fast as he can. When they finally get Jimmy up, he’s dead – and missing a leg.
Meanwhile in Vienna, Renard and Meisner are waiting in a warehouse for Sebastian to arrive. Renard holds a gun on Sebastian while Meisner checks to be sure Sebastian is alone. Renard questions whether or not Sebastian had set them up, but he protests that he didn’t know where they were. Sebastian has brought some food and drink and tells Renard that the Family has brought in his cousin Viktor to take Eric’s place. Renard says he doesn’t know much about Viktor other than the fact that Eric didn’t trust him. Sebastian also tells him that Viktor is determined to bring Eric’s killer to justice and they should get Renard to a safer place, but Renard says no to anymore ‘safe places.’ Sebastian then tells them that he still doesn’t know where the resistance meeting will take place, but he knows it’s the next night at midnight.
Nick, Hank and Sgt. Wu arrive at the scene and discuss what happened to Jimmy with Charlie. The deputy M.E. shows them the body, saying Jimmy was dead before he was brought back up – and also mentions that the only time he’d seen anything like this was when a bear tore a hiker apart. Sgt. Wu then brings up the alligators in the sewers legend that his uncle had told him. Nick asks Charlie if someone can take them down into the sewers, and he says that he will. Hank, Sgt. Wu and Nick get suited up, and Sgt. Wu reveals that he’s a tad claustrophobic. When they get to the blockage that Jimmy had been checking, they find a backpack and a number of other items, as well as blood on the walls. They keep going but leave Sgt. Wu looking through the items… one of which – to his horror – is Jimmy’s leg.
Back at the precinct, Sgt. Wu is going through the items they found in the sewer while Hank matches them up with one of the recent robberies and Nick plots the location of the robbery on the map. Then Sgt. Wu finds a gym card from their murder victim, and suddenly they’ve got a link to both the above ground and below ground murders. Then the M.E. calls and tells them that the closest match to the bite mark on Jimmy’s leg is an alligator – but Sgt. Wu points out that alligators don’t rob houses.
Hank and Nick go to Monroe’s house to ask him if he knows about an alligator-like Wesen, and he tells them he thinks it’s a Gelumcaedus – but he’s never seen one, and he can’t go to Aunt Marie’s trailer with them because he’s making dinner. The detectives give him a hard time until he writes down the Wesen name and then suggests they get the books from the trailer and bring them and Juliette back so they can have a dinner party and figure it out together. The group goes through the various Gelumcaedus accounts by different Grimms over the years, finding out that the creatures do rip people apart and their grip is impossible to break. Gelumcaedus are also one of the oldest Wesen species – they guarded the Roman aqueducts under Caligula’s reign. The books also show a weapon that should be used against the Gelumcaedus – a vambrace – which Nick just happens to have in the trailer.
The next day, he and Hank get some help from a woman at Portland Water and Sewer as well as a map of the tunnels , and then they go to Aunt Marie’s trailer to get the vambrace. When Nick puts it on and slides the knife out of the brace, he has a flashback to the fight in the bar when he was a zombie. Hank sees him zone out and asks if he’s ready, and Nick says yes. The two head to one of the places on the river where they can walk right in to the sewers and find very large bootprints in the sand, then walk in. After making it back to the area where Jimmy had been killed, Nick hears and sees something, but then can’t place where it is because of the echoes in the tunnels. As they continue to search, Nick starts hearing a ticking sound and realizes that there’s a hidden door. He opens it and enters, with Hank following. They go up a set of stairs and find the Gelumcaedus’ hideout and stash, and then he attacks. Luckily Nick manages to block his teeth with the vambrace and then Hank hits him from behind with his rifle. The Gelumcaedus turns over and de-woges. Nick calls him Gelumcaedus, and he calls Nick Decapitari.
Sebastian comes back earlier than expected to bring Renard and Meisner to the meeting. When they arrive at a house in the countryside, they’re told that the meeting has been delayed by a trial. They all go to the barn where the man who betrayed them is being beaten and interrogated as to why he did it. He gives the name of the woman who was working for the Royals, and then is taken out and shot. Renard and Sebastian are led up to the house to wait for the last person to arrive before the meeting begins.
The Gelumcaedus, Gregoric, is taken to the precinct for questioning. His previous record shows that he was arrested twice for breaking and entering, but he was acquitted both times due to lack of evidence – not a problem they have now. But Gregoric thinks their charges of murder and robbery are amusing and tells them to let him go and to just go home. Neither Nick nor Hank understands his attitude, but they both prepare to leave for the night with Hank heading home first. Nick gives Monroe and Rosalee a call, and they tell him that Decapitari is a really old term for a Grimm. Nick then calls Hank, who’s just arrived home, and tells him that he thinks there’s another Gelumcaedus based on the times they have for the recent break-ins. Hank asks if he should come back to the station, but Nick says no and that he’ll come over if he finds anything. As soon as they hang up, Hank turns and is attacked by the other Gelumcaedus. The other Gelumcaedus drags the unconscious and duct-taped Hank into the sewers.
Nick arrives at Hank’s house and knocks, but then his phone rings. Expecting Hank, he tells him that he’s outside, but it’s the other Gelumcaedus. He tells Nick that if he wants Hank back in one piece, he needs to bring Gregoric to him. Nick goes back to the station and gets Gregoric out of holding, handcuffs him and drives him out to the sewers. When they drive up, the second Gelumcaedus calls again and Nick demands to talk to Hank or he’ll shoot Gregoric. Hank says “Nick,” and then the Gelumcaedus tells him to bring his brother in and to leave the gun behind. Nick puts the gun in the glove compartment, but he’s got the vambrace on, covered by his sleeve. Nick walks Gregoric in, who tells him that he’d always had respect for the Decapitari, but now he doesn’t find them very scary. They reach where Gregoric’s brother, Andre, is holding Hank, and Andre tells Nick to uncuff his brother or he’ll slice Hank’s throat open. Nick uncuffs Gregoric and tells Andre to step away from Hank. Gregoric tells Andre that Nick is Decapitari, and Andre says that means Nick knows what they are. Nick agrees that he does, and Andre says that’s too bad because he and his brothers will have to kill Nick. Nick gets the tape off Hank’s mouth and he immediately tells him there’s a third brother behind him! Nick fights off Andre and the third brother, but Gregoric almost has him when Hank gets back in the fight. They manage to subdue Gregoric without killing him.
Over in Vienna, Adalind is rubbing the vile cream she made with Stefania onto her pregnant belly, which while still a small bump is beginning to show. Little does she know that Prince Viktor is watching her with great interest on hidden cameras set up throughout her rooms…
Nick puts the vambrace back into the weapons closet in the trailer, saying that he kind of likes the term Decapitari.
It’s the Christmas season in Portland, but that only brings out the naughty kids. Two teenagers break into a car and steal the bags of gifts, then head to their hideout under a bridge to unwrap their loot. After breaking a Santa snow globe, a scary Santa with horns shows up and says, “You’ve been naughty.” He grabs one of the boys and stuffs him into his sack, then tries for the other one who only gets some cuts and scrapes because he hid in a car. “Santa” takes the first boy and disappears.
In Austria, the last person heading to the meeting is nearly delayed by a Verrat-staged accident, but he’s smart enough to kill everyone alive at the scene. He arrives at the meeting site and after brief introductions, the meeting finally begins. Sebastian leaves, saying he cannot take the chance of being missed. At the meeting, there is some dissention in the ranks as they discuss whether or not they can trust Renard. He finally speaks up, saying he has insights into Wesen that they don’t – plus he has a Grimm. Everyone agrees, and they head out as dead bodies at an accident site have been found.
Rosalee is saying goodbye to Monroe for the day, and as soon as she’s out the front door, he lets Juliette in the back door. He wants her to help decorate the house as a surprise for Rosalee, who’d been with her aunt the previous Christmas.
Nick, Hank and Sgt. Wu are under the bridge, examining the crime scene. They find the gifts, a lump of coal, and the body in the car. Sgt. Wu crawls in to try to pull the body out when the boy begins to scream – they’ve got a live one! They immediately call for the paramedics. At the hospital, the doctor tells them that the boy got a really bad scare. Hank and Nick then speak to the father of the boy, Derek, who tells them he wouldn’t blame them for arresting him… he really got himself in trouble this time. He knows Derek stole the gifts. When they ask about the jacket with the initials “Q.B.” on the tag, the father says it might be another ‘bad’ friend of Derek’s by the name of Quinn. Hank and Nick go to talk to Derek, but he doesn’t say much until he sees a man playing Santa on the ward. He starts screaming that he won’t get him, and the detectives wonder if Derek and Quinn robbed the wrong Santa.
That night, another teen steals a bag full of presents from a woman. He stops in a parking garage to check out what he’d gotten and the scary Santa shows up, spanking him with a tree branch and putting him into his sack. A man walks out and sees it happen, threatening to call the police, but the Santa figure growls at him and leaves another lump of coal.
In Vienna, Renard and one of his associates are in the hotel where Adalind is staying, and they break in to her room. She’s not there, but Renard looks around. He finds the Hexenbiest cream that she’s been using on her pregnant belly and when he opens the jar, it causes him to woge. He then notices the cameras. He leaves a rose and a note on the desk for Adalind and leaves.
At the precinct, Hank and Nick look up both Derek and Quinn and find the teens have long rap sheets. With Quinn’s address in hand, they head to his house. When they arrive at Quinn’s house, Bud answers the door! It turns out that Bud is friends with Quinn’s father, Jerry, who’s very worried about his son. They show him the jacket that was found at the first scene and he confirms that it’s Quinn’s, but then Hank gets another call and they have to leave. Outside the house, Hank tells Nick that they have a witness to a kidnapping by Santa.
Rosalee gets home to Monroe’s house that night and walks in to a winter wonderland. Monroe excitedly tells her about all the heirloom decorations he has, but she’s just not happy. She finally explains that her family used to love celebrating the holidays – though perhaps not as much as Monroe’s family! – but when she was 7, her favorite aunt and uncle were killed in a car crash on Christmas Eve as they drove to Rosalee’s family’s home. Monroe feels awful, and Rosalee feels worse.
Hank and Nick meet Sgt. Wu at the parking garage and get the details. One guy chased the kid who’d stolen the woman’s shopping bag, but he lost him. Then another guy came into the garage and saw a Santa shoving a kid into a bag, a Santa that looked like “his worst drug-crazed acid-flashback nightmare.’ Sgt. Wu hasn’t questioned any of the Santas in the square where the woman was robbed, so Nick and Hank head back to do that. The first one they question turns out to be a Schakal who freaks out once he sees that Nick is a Grimm. Unfortunately, many people in the square begin to record the Schakal-Santa’s takedown, and the children who see it are confused and upset.
Adalind returns to her room and reads Renard’s note. It tells her that there are cameras in the room, and to meet him at a cafe. She’s to stay and change her clothes, smiling at the note, and then leave. Adalind manages to do so, but is clearly nervous.
Monroe lies awake in bed next to Rosalee. He finally gives up and goes downstairs with a big sigh. Rosalee wakes up the next morning alone in their bed, then goes downstairs to find all the Christmas decorations gone and Monroe asleep on the couch.
Juliette is watching the news that morning and tells Nick he has to see – it’s video of him and Hank punching out the Santa they’d arrested the night before. Someone pounds on the door and Juliette lets Bud in, who wants to know if Nick found Quinn and if the guy they arrested was behind it. Nick tells Bud he’ll call as soon as he knows anything, but all he’s got so far are two lumps of coal. Nick leaves, but Bud reacts very oddly to hearing about the two lumps of coal.
At the station, Sgt. Wu tells them that the analysis on the coal is back and it comes from… the North Pole.
Juliette and Rosalee are having tea together as Rosalee explains the Christmas problem she’s having with Monroe. Juliette admits to helping Monroe set everything up, but she also suggests that the two of them need to find a tradition they can share. Rosalee tells her that the only tradition she really remembers is her aunt leaving out a cigar and a beer for Santa.
Meanwhile, Hank and Nick go to talk to Monroe, and he gives them a brief explanation of the Christmas problem he’s having before they explain theirs. Once Monroe hears about the missing kids and the coal, he’s sure it’s Krampus. He explains that it’s not really a Wesen tale, but Krampus shows up before Christmas and whips naughty kids with switches, then kidnaps them and hangs them in the highest tree he can find. Then on December 21st, the winter solstice, he consumes the children and disappears at midnight. As it’s the 21st, the trio realize they don’t have much time.
Out at the tree, Krampus stuff another teenager into a basket and hangs her in the tree, while all the other teens in the tree beg to be released. Monroe, Nick and Hank are arguing as to where the highest point with the tallest tree in Portland is when Bud shows up, still not believing in Krampus but knowing he needs to tell them. The four of them head to the place in the woods that they think is their best bet and manage to find the tree. Nick hears Krampus coming and goes to fight him as Hank, Monroe and Bud let all of the kids out of the tree. Nick manages to knock Krampus out just as Hank and Monroe come to help him, and the two of them urge Nick to kill Krampus, since there’s no way he can be taken in as he is. Then the clock strikes midnight and Krampus de-woges into a normal-looking man who freaks out at then men who have guns on him.
Back at the station, the man tells them that it happens to him every December – he seems to black out for days until he wakes on December 22nd. He can’t remember anything that happens… but sometimes there’s blood. He doesn’t know what a Wesen is, and he has no idea how he got to Portland from his home in Salt Lake City. Nick writes a new account of Krampus in one of the books in the trailer, wondering what he should do with the guy. Monroe says that maybe he goes into an altered state of being which is why he doesn’t remember anything. Nick finally says that since there’s no way they’ll get a conviction – no one will recognize this guy! – they should turn him over to the Wesen Council. Monroe agrees to talk to Rosalee about it.
Monroe gets home and all the Christmas decorations are up in the house again, and Rosalee is asleep on the couch this time. On the coffee table is a cigar and a beer. Monroe smiles and puts a blanket over the sleeping Rosalee.
Wow! What a way to end the first half of Season 3! Let’s get into these episodes.
Gelumcaedus is an interesting Wesen species, and the Grimm take on the alligators in the sewers urban legend was a fun one… although more gory than expected. This episode had more of Hank and Sgt. Wu and less of Monroe, Juliette and Rosalee, which is both good and meh. I really like when Russell Hornsby and Reggie Lee get to shine, but I wish the writers could find a way to achieve a better balance with all the costars. It shouldn’t seem like such a special occasion when some of the actors get more screen time! They’re all wonderful, and I wish things could be more equal.
Twelve Days of Krampus was a very wicked take on Christmas! Here’s hoping all the naughty teenagers will be on their best behaviors for a while. 😉 And a Wesen that doesn’t know what he’s doing and only woges 3 weeks out of the year without control? Completely new idea. I have to wonder what the Wesen Council will do with the poor guy, though.
Nick’s flashback to the bar fight and then his resistance to killing Krampus (going back to Renard’s question about killing humans vs. killing Wesens) were intriguing. I’m glad to see those things aren’t being forgotten, but the Krampus incident was a little too convenient because he ended up not killing a Wesen who couldn’t help himself… one who was something of an innocent. Hopefully the writers will push the envelope a little further when Grimm starts back up again.
Adalind is literally stuck between a rock and a hard place, isn’t she? Prince Viktor is not a very friendly guy, and he wants a lot from her – it’s hard to tell just how much at this point – plus, he has to have at least guessed that she’s pregnant now that he’s seen her via hidden camera. But will she be any better off with Renard? He knows that she’s trying to get her powers back, plus he knows that there’s some chance the baby is his. The next episode is going to be a wild one!
Renard is also in trouble. If Viktor really thinks that people in Portland were involved in Eric’s death, he’s going to put Renard under a microscope, especially once it’s discovered that Renard and Eric met while Eric was there. Viktor may not know why Renard had it done, but he knows enough to be very suspicious. And okay, fine – I’m starting to believe Eric really is dead. But… he still might not be! Did anyone see a body? I just can’t give it up entirely.
It seems as though everyone in Portland, at least, will now be able to have a nice Christmas and a happy new year. We can only hope those in Europe will make it through to January. And that’s when we’ll all be back here, as happily the mid-season break isn’t as long this time!
Happy Holidays to all of the actors, writers, producers, publicists and everyone else that works on Grimm, and especially to all of my fellow Grimmsters, from me and everyone else at Three If By Space! See you in January!