Hemlock Grove - S1E8 "Catabasis" Recap

Roman exits Ashley's house and vomits out front before getting into his car, muttering angrily about Peter and snorting some cocaine. He pulls over the car and steps out, appearing to regain some composure. Upon spotting the Godfrey Institute in the distance, he sets off towards it on foot. *roll opening music*

Upon arriving there, he compels his way past security and swipes a key card to get in. He goes exploring and eventually sets off towards the "Restricted Access" area, attempting to get in using a blowtorch. Dr. Pryce catches him but eventually agrees to take him back there when Roman demands to know what Ouroboros is, even drawing the symbol on the door and asking why he is dreaming about it. Roman sees a large box with a light coming out of it at roughly eye-level and Dr. Pryce says that this is Ouroboros. Roman looks inside and is stunned, not noticing Dr. Pryce sneaking up behind him until it's too late. Roman finds himself lifted up by his throat and injected with something that causes him to pass out.

Peter is in an improved mood and his mother and he subtly comment on the fact that this is due to his removing Roman from his life. She finds lipstick on a cup and is weary when Peter says that it is from Letha Godfrey.

Roman wakes in an empty pool and there's all kinds of flashes. He demands to be let out, but we then see that Roman is in a coma. Olivia visits him at the Pryce Institute and Dr. Pryce claims that he merely gave him a sedative when he was in an agitated state, and that the coma must have been a result from a psychotic break. Olivia doesn't seem suspicious of Dr. Pryce but does insist upon taking Roman back home, despite Dr. Pryce's objections.

Clementine examines Roman's car and when the sheriff shows up, he states that her Fish and Wildlife badge will only take her so far. He also tells her that her visit to the Godfrey manor did not go unnoticed and that if the matter doesn't match her (fake) badge, she needs to stay out of police business.

Back at Godfrey manor, Shelley carries Roman upstairs to her room in the attic, where he is to stay. Olivia has him positioned in the line of a window so the first thing he feels upon waking up will be the sun's warmth. Olivia is eerily calm as she leaves, and Shelley types a message to Roman on her phone, imploring him to come back to her.

Roman hears her message in his dream state and communicates with a "normal" version of Shelley - one that is of normal stature and classically pretty physical features. He tells her Pryce drugged him and she replies that that isn't the reason he's there. When he asks why he's there, she hands him his phone and asks him to ask his razor the next time he cuts himself. He presses play on the phone and a video plays of Roman asleep in class while the teacher explains what a Catabasis is. A Catabasis is a Greek ritual in which a person descends into the underworld to perform an important task or defeat a dangerous enemy. Shelley then advises him to look inside himself and destroy the Dragon before its fire burns him alive.

Clementine is lurking around the Rumancek trailer, though Peter and Lynda are not present. The bishop shows up and she pulls out her gun until she realises who it it. He jests about her talents with the gun, she asks what he's doing there, and he voices concerns he had after their last call, during which she was drinking.

Letha teases her father with an impersonation of him but the happy family moment is short-lived when Norman receives a call from Olivia. He says he'll be right over and then tells his wife and daughter that Roman is in a coma.

Back in Roman's Catabasis, we see him speaking with dream-Shelley, who tells him that this version of herself is how Roman makes her see herself. She goes on to say that she wishes she could teach him how to see himself.

Norman, Olivia, and Letha stand around Roman and Olivia tells them that this was caused by a drug overdose. Norman and Olivia go downstairs to speak in private and discuss Roman's condition and what led up to it. She is still convinced that the drugs caused it but upon hearing of Dr. Pryce's involvement, Norman all but outright claims that Dr. Pryce caused it. Norman kisses Olivia's hand and takes her into his arms and Shelley observes the interaction from upstairs.

Clementine and the bishop discuss the case and he scolds her for stepping on the toes of the local law enforcement. She fills him in on quite a bit of personal information on both the Godfreys and the Rumanceks - clearly she's been spying on them. The bishop becomes exasperated on her telling him about so many different "animals," stating that she was only sent there to hunt one. To this, she replies that she has found a whole herd. He insists that she just focus on Peter Rumancek, whom we see walking alone on the road.

Back in Roman's Catabasis, he first walks through a tunnel and finds himself outside. He meets Clementine, with blood painted on her face. She tells him he's weak, draws a snake eating it's tail on his shirt with blood, has him kneel, and shoves a silver spoon in his mouth. She asks him if he thinks the Dragon gives a shit about his nobility and states that he shall eat him alive. Roman hurries off and comes across Norman in front of Godfrey manor, cutting up a brain. They sit and discuss the Dragon and consult Norman's Swiss colleague via laptop. They discuss Roman's Catabasis and Roman sits feeling confused and eventually JR shows up, too. He looks just as he did on the day he died, minus the bullet to the brain. JR and Roman walk together and JR tells him how Olivia had no interest in his older sister, Juliet. When Roman was born, she was obsessed with him and we see a vision of her shrieking at a nurse to let her hold him and we see baby Roman with some sort of skin over his head. Roman is still mad at JR, who also tells him that Norman is his real father.

Roman finds his way through school hallways and into a classroom. He sees a video begin of Letha dancing. He's interrupted by Letha's mother screaming at him that he paid his money and she lashes a snake tongue at him from her mouth. He jumps up, runs out, runs into the first victim with her entrails hanging out, has a vision of Francis saying, "It was you! I don't wanna see that!" and then runs downstairs. Things segway into the dream previously had by Peter with the birds and Roman's bloody shirt. It continues on with Peter describing fear as smelling the the hottest, wettest pussy on earth.

Peter sits with his mum outside their trailer and she hands him a beer. She says she never wanted him mixed up with the Godfreys and he says that he thought his shared dreams with Roman meant something.

Clementine visits the Godfrey manor and she goes out back with Olivia to question her about her discoveries at the mill. Olivia snaps and calls her a cunt, and expresses anger since she is being a pest while Roman is in a coma. She tells her to get on with what she has to say or to go back to Ohio. Clementine is surprised that Olivia knows of her origins but Olivia will not answer why she knows this information about her origins. Clementine says she'll pray for Roman, Olivia snaps that she shall do no such thing, and Clementine asks if she is afraid he'll be saved.

Roman is becoming frantic in his Catabasis and making his way through the manor, feeling as if he's in a maze. Wielding an ax, he chases after a wolf that is chasing Shelley and attempts to slash it before it turns to smoke. Shelley also disappears but he is then met by a naked Ashley. She tells him he's ugly and that he can find a monster by looking in the "coke mirror." She grabs his erection through his pants and when he looks back up to her, she is now his mother - yikes.

Peter visits the Godfreys and Olivia meets him at the door. He offers a statue of Ganesh for Roman, and surprisingly, Olivia is willing to let him in, though Peter politely declines the offer. She tells him that if Roman had met someone like him sooner, he might not be in this current state. Peter meets Letha and they go sit on a hill of the Godfrey manor, not knowing that Clementine is photographing them from afar.

Norman visits Olivia and they begin to make out right next to a comatose Roman. Dr. Pryce talks into his tape recorder, speaking about alchemists creating life and the sedation of Roman. Shelley narrates a letter about how she wishes she had a voice and how she is trying to be strong. She also removes her wig and continues on to vent her upset towards Roman for leaving her.

The entire first season of Hemlock Grove is available for viewing on Netflix.


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