Reviewed By: Drew Vogel
Review Date: 11/13/17 7:59 pm
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I must admit, I'm getting tired of hearing myself complain about these stories. If you're reading all of these, I can only assume that you feel the same. Fortunately, I really like this story. It's actually quite a breath of fresh air. It does a really nice job of placing what is basically a standalone adventure against the backdrop of an ongoing story, and getting the two stories to work really well together. Specifically, I like how it uses the ongoing story as a sort of red herring, tricking us into thinking that this is a story about the Draconian-Mim war, when it's really about something else entirely.
Unfortunately, that something else is some entirely new never-before-seen backstory involving Bev Tarrant. It is a little odd to toss aside this ongoing story that's been slowly developing over the course of the last several stories and... surprise!... reveal entirely new backstory out of the blue. But it works. Indeed, it works very nicely. The ending also works extremely well, despite the fact that it's retreading well-worn territory. I would have thought it impossible to get any juice out of a plot "twist" as obvious as "Braxiatel has a hidden agenda", but I'm be damned if this story doesn't do precisely that. No, as twists go, it's not remotely surprising, but it doesn't have to be. It's dramatically effective.
Frankly, I'm surprised just how well this story works. If you described it to me, I would have thought it sounded boring and predictable. But it's not really. I think credit for that has to go to the script, which is strong and compelling. I also appreciate that it's a bit more straightforward than some recent episodes, with a simple, linear narrative and characters with clear (or clearly hidden) motivations.