Wynonna Earp Season 3, Episode 6 Review “If We Make It Through December”
Last week, Wynonna Earp dropped the bombshell of Waverly’s paternal lineage being as angelic as many fans had long speculated. Will we discover what happened to her father, Julian? Will Bobo finally get out of the well? Get ready for Christmas in August, Wynonna Earp style! Because what’s summertime Christmas without demons, vampires, and grotesque torture?
It’s Christmas time in Purgatory, and the team is getting ready to celebrate. Mama is still chilly toward Doc, and Waverly thinks Nicole makes a cute elf. Nedley’s doing his best grumpy Santa impression at the park when a kid sees the ‘real’ Santa and runs off. Only to run into Bulshar. Wynonna tells Waverly her dad was an angel while Mama guts a turkey. Flashback to younger Mama being in love with angel Julian because he was everything Ward wasn’t. Mama then tells Waverly Bobo was present at her birth. Doc takes a (mostly needle-less) tree to Jeremy, who opens up about Robin not calling him back. Jeremy calls Robin’s phone, but he can’t answer, as he’s in some kind of torture dungeon run by Bulshar, as is the missing kid.
“I have to dig around for the menstru-angel.”—Waverly
Wynonna meets up with one of the other officers, Charlie, to look for the missing kid. While she and Charlie check out the scene, a tree falls on them. One that doesn’t grow this far north (creepy blood tree??). They take blood from the scene to Jeremy and figure out that Bulshar is kidnapping children of Purgatory’s ‘first families.’ Waverly visits Bobo in his well. Wynonna and Doc go to visit Kate, where he learns that she was already a vampire when they got married. She offers to help them out, but Wynonna leaves after Kate drops the bomb that she and Doc slept together.
“A kid is missing, and we don’t talk about Helen Mirren in that tone.”—Wynonna
Waverly asks Bobo about the day she was born. Flashback to Bobo finding Michelle after she’d given birth to Waverly. When Mama passed out, Bobo took Waverly to Ward, demanding that he take care of Waverly or Bobo would kill him. In the present, Bobo implies Julian might still be alive but won’t tell Waverly the truth unless she releases him. She leaves. Wynonna tells Doc she doesn’t want to be the other woman; he tells her that they share something deeper than he had with Kate. When he asks her to admit she loves him, Wynonna walks away. Nedley’s wracked with guilt and Purgatory is getting to him. Out in the woods, Nicole finds a bright red lily that intrigues her. In Bulshar’s house of horrors, he feeds another guy a wrinkled up nutsack looking thing and some green goo while Robin covers the missing boy’s eyes.
“Last week I watched vampires bite someone’s head off and the next night I binge-watched Pretty Little Liars like it didn’t even happen.”—Nedley
Doc tells Jeremy that the vampires can’t kill the first families, so Robin is alive. Doc, Wynonna, and Nicole split up to look for sources of the pig blood found in the forest. Bulshar tells the children of the first families that their ancestors betrayed him. They sold him out to Wyatt, so now he’s punishing the great-great-great grandchildren. Bulshar preps Robin for the nutsack and green goo treatment. Charlie flirts with Wynonna after she proves he’s not supernatural. They break into Bulshar’s torture room and bust the kidnapped kids free. Wynonna flirts with Charlie; Robin and Jeremy flirt and kiss. Nicole goes to visit Nedley, who tells her that he’s retiring and she’s the new sheriff.
“Premature e-joke-ulation on my part.”—Wynonna
Everyone shares an awkward Christmas dinner, mostly made awkward because Doc and Wynonna are fighting. Doc gets a text message and leaves in the middle of dinner. Mama gives a speech about being proud of her daughters being able to make a family without her. She then puts up the ‘menstru-angel’ to represent that they’re imperfect, but great. Mama tells Wynonna to go after Doc, telling her not to settle or make the same mistakes she did. Wynonna heads on over to see Charlie instead. Mama visits Bobo and asks for information about Julian in exchange for letting him out.
“Mmmm, it’s too much tryptophan.”—Nicole
Waverly dresses up like a sexy Santa and does a song and dance for Nicole. Kate tells Doc that Bulshar’s goons came to collect fealty from her and she fought them off. Doc tells her he’s there for her and will do whatever she needs, even become a vampire. Which he does.
Favorite One Liner:
“My baby daddy is…married to a vampire.”—Wynonna
“That’s a Harlequin I’d read.”—Mama
I Gotta Say…
I honestly don’t have a lot to say about this week’s episode. The action sequences and pacing were well done, and a lot happened. At the same time, there isn’t a whole lot of character work or thematic implications for me to dig into. It was a solid episode, and I enjoyed myself. I just find myself…lacking in analytical substance to dig my teeth into. The family dinner at the end was quite lovely. Mama’s speech was well done. It was nice to see a blend of found and biological family, even with the awkward undertone. Mama being proud of her girls for carrying on when she left warmed my heart.
In other news, we’ve finally met Wynonna’s other love interest, Charlie. He’s quite average. I do find it amusing that the Earp women seem to have a thing for paladins or other ‘law enforcement’ types. Mama married a cop then had an affair with an angel (a literal warrior for light). Waverly is dating a cop/sheriff. Wynonna dated a US Marshal and is now into a firefighter. They do have a type, these Earp ladies.
Still, I found Charlie decidedly lacking in anything interesting. He’s fine looking and his character is generic. He’s not a hundred year old immortal, a vampire, or working for a top-secret government organization. He’s not even a demon. At least not yet. Though I am suspicious about his allegiances; the show almost went out of its way to make him as unsuspicious as possible. So, of course, I’m suspicious. Maybe I just want him to be more interesting because right now, I find him rather boring as a love interest and as a character.
Look, he’s fine, and I get that Wynonna is going through another one of her “I don’t do complicated or emotions” things right now. The thing is, it’s starting to feel both tired and forced. By this point, if Doc and Wynonna aren’t endgame I’ll eat my entire sofa. So, when Wynonna is suddenly freaking out about being close with Doc—after she’d seemingly spent months trying to get him to be closer to her to avoid thinking about Alice—and shacking up with a rando, I can’t help but roll my eyes.
Same with Doc, who bounced around from one form of depression to another quicker than he can draw his pistol. First Alice, then Dolls, then going to hell. First he’s into Wynonna, then into Kate, then back into Wynonna (after sleeping with Kate) and now he’s all in with Kate the way he was with Wynonna last season. Actually, this is the first time his emotional swings have made sense this season. He’s vulnerable and clearly reacting to Wynonna’s unwillingness to admit her feelings. Doc is the kind of guy who doesn’t want to stick around pining after someone. So yeah, hooking back up with Kate, who verbally expresses her need of him, makes sense.
At the same time, this feels childish and immature. This is what you do when you’re 18, not a hundred years old. After the amount of leveling up Doc did last season, this feels like major, unwarranted character regression purely for the sake of drama. I don’t find it compelling.
It’s as if Doc and Wynonna are making up for any tension lacking in Nicole and Waverly’s relationship. I appreciate that Andras doesn’t want to contribute to negative storytelling regarding queer female characters. I do. It makes sense. Her fanbase loves happy, domestic queers, so that’s what they’re getting. Good for her listening to that part of the fanbase. I can’t say I’m super compelled by it, but if that’s what lots of fans want, I’m happy for them.
My one disappointment, however, was that this episode seemingly erased Dominique Provost-Chalkley’s previous comments about Waverly identifying as bisexual this year at ClexaCon. Mama Earp remarks, “You’re already a lesbian” in response to Waverly mentioning she’s vegan. Given that Waverly does not correct her mother, one can reasonably take this as confirmation that Waverly identifies as lesbian, or at least didn’t find it important to correct her mother’s assumptions.
At the end of the day, Waverly is still a queer female character, and that’s super awesome. Also, Dom’s remarks weren’t ‘canon’ nor were they word of mouth from the creator. At the same time, for those of us who identify as bisexual and found a lot of meaning in Dom’s discussion of Waverly’s identity using those terms, this does feel a little bit like erasure. Perhaps Waverly will have a discussion with Mama further down the line, but this is mildly off-putting. I’m willing to wait and see what the show does. But I’m not super sanguine about a follow up that clarifies Waverly is bisexual. Overall, I think it would have been better to leave her identity un-labelend rather than basically contradict Dom’s earlier statements.
Finally, I’m going to miss Nedley. This is one loss this season that feels well-seeded, as disappointed as I am to see him go. Nedley brought so much dry humor and a ton of heart. I liked having an older character on the show to balance out the young-uns, and one who wasn’t family. I’ll miss you Nedley. You were such a good grumpy old dude. I hope you’re not gone forever.
I see you, Andras
- I love hearing Dom speaking French.
- The angel made of tampons was pretty damn delightful.
- Jeremy shaved his docstache, woohoo!
- The big nose thing doesn’t really sound better when you try to make it about sex.
- “Nothing comes free from Earp women” was such a good line. I love Bobo.
Tune in next week for “I Fall to Pieces,” where it seems like we’ll finally get the infamous Nicole and Wynonna handcuffed together scene! Looking forward to some excellent brotp-ness.