Midnight, Texas Season 1, Episode 2 Recap: Something's Different & That Scares Me

Photo: Ursula Coyote/NBC.
Welcome back to Midnight, Texas — where vampires and angels roam free and psychics are still considered frauds.
This week, Manfred Bernardo (François Arnaud) and Creek — who has no last name because she’s a female character so take that feminism — (Sarah Ramos) are in trouble. The show opens with an action shot of the pair running, and reveals that Manfred has a huge claw mark down his side. Hm, could a werewolf named Rev. Emilio Sheehan (Yul Vazquez) be far behind? Just so everyone knows they’re into each other (or that their adrenaline is majorly pumping), they try to kiss. Spoiler alert: It doesn’t work out.
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Flashback to 24 hours earlier: Manfred is where we left him last week, staring open-mouthed at his demon- and ghost-infested house. So he hops in his RV for a chat with his dead grandma, Xylda (Joanne Camp), who lets him know that Hightower has been blowing up his phone. Then she reminds him that he doesn’t have to pretend to be normal in Midnight and that he should seriously ask his supernatural townie friends for help with this whole home infestation thing before it blows up in his face.
The core townsfolk are in the pawn shop having a city council meeting about how to get Bobo Winthrop (Dylan Bruce) out of jail and, you know, deal with Fiji Cavanaugh (Parisa Fitz-Henley) having used her telekinetic witch powers to lift and crush a sheriff’s cruiser in a diplomatic fashion. I can’t help but wonder if Midnight has a grocery store. Anyway, Manfred joins them and drops his ghost problem in their laps. They have to resolve this issue so Manfred can confer with the spirit of Aubrey (Shannon Lorance), Bobo’s fiancee, again and figure out what the hell is going on.
Speaking of Bobo, we find out during his interview with the sheriff’s office that they arrested him because that gun Aubrey led Manfred to in the river was not only used to kill her but was also registered to Bobo. Props to Bobo for trying to Jedi mind-trick them into believing the whole car-crushing incident didn’t happen using the hubris and poker face of a mediocre white man gaslighting us all.
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To try to get him to talk, they put Bobo in a cell full of Sons of Lucifer members. Within minutes, he’s not only the only one standing, but he doesn’t have a scratch. So he has to have some supernatural powers of his own, right? Because there’s no way a biker gang would just happen to be full of terrible fighters. Bobo asserts his innocence to the head biker in charge of the cell, with a message that her husband who runs the gang should stop coming after him. Not going to happen!
Olivia — also no last name — (Arielle Kebbel) locks the Rev in his storm cellar because a full moon is coming and there’s no way a werewolf could simply break down timber doors that are chained closed by punching a hole through them. He feels dread: “Something is different” this month because lunar cycles defiantly put one in touch with nature — just ask every woman who is still getting her period.
So anyway, Manfred, Fiji, and Joe Strong (Jason Lewis) go to his house. No wait, let me tell it again: A psychic, a witch, and an angel walk into a haunted house, and the witch asks, “Do you see any ghosts now?” You can see how this scene could use a punchline better than Fiji saying “oh my Goddess” when the floorboards light up with an evil red energy. Manfred lets the ghost of Aubrey inside of him to show him what happened, since she can’t speak through all the water in her lungs. It’s a mishmash of images: She's standing on a dirt road at night as a truck drives up; there's a gun in a woman’s hand; her watching her own feet as she’s dragged off; her waking up in the sunlight on the side of the river surrounded by human skeletons; a man dressed in black with a skull face mask standing over her; and her drowning. While it’s clear that Bobo didn’t kill Aubrey, none of these things offer the layperson any hints about who did or any substantial evidence that might get Bobo out of jail.
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When Manfred wakes up in Fiji’s very quiet (a.k.a. inhospitable to the dead) house later, she casually mentions that mediums don’t typically stay in Midnight for long, so let’s all make a mental note and cross our fingers for a psychic showdown when another medium shows up. When Manfred relays some of what he saw through Aubrey’s eyes to Fiji, he says her killer is a biker. Fiji tells him Aubrey was married to a biker so everyone jumps to the conclusion that Aubrey’s biker husband must have killed her. Also, Fiji is going to cleanse his house and perform an exorcism, so that’s going nowhere good. Before it gets started, Manfred drops a little info from grandma: His family used to fight demons in Eastern Europe. Fiji wants to know more but literally says, “But that’s for another time.” Thanks for the heads up, writers room!
Manfred does go to the cops. Two pieces of info we didn’t get from his vision are put forth. First, the gun was one she had in her purse, which explains why it was registered to Bobo (the killer threw it in the river). And she was left in the river to drown slowly over three days, which is pretty odd in a domestic violence case – those are usually quick and violent. The sheriff decides to widen the search, just in case Manfred is right, and oh, he also puts his deputy on suspension for that stunt with Bobo. He may be becoming Team Midnight, and this is all allegory for racism right?
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Anyway, the now pissed-off deputy goes to Midnight after dark to have a look around for literally anything to get her back in the sheriff’s good graces and cracks open the chain on the Rev’s storm cellar because she hears some noise. (Point of order: If you’re suspended from duty, that’s called breaking and entering and is considered illegal. Also, I’m pretty sure cops who are suspended from duty have to hand over their service weapon until they’re reinstated, but she may just have a concealed carry permit. It is Texas, after all.)
Long story short: the Rev is a weretiger, he’s on the loose, he’s hunting, he kills that cop, and the whole town is now in danger. That catches us up to where this episode started. In case you were wondering, in this universe, his bite doesn’t turn you into a weretiger, you have to be born that way. So death is the only consequence here. Noted!
Fiji’s seance works (and looks exactly like the Haunted Hotel at Disneyland — RIP) as far as clearing out all the ghosts goes, but the demon in Manfred’s house takes a liking to her and chants her name in the most comical Jabba the Hutt voice possible. It's supposed to be scary, but the distortion on the voice just makes it seem silly. I would have recommended going with a kind of cheesy, male announcer voice instead. The part where its bloody demon hand starts lifting her skirt up is creepy af tho and weirdly reminds me of the stories that were popular during the “Satanic cults are performing rituals in kindergartens” heyday of the '80s. Manfred gets another family trinket – a skull – from grandma to condemn the demon back to hell, breaks the mirror, and that's not the last we're going to hear from that demon.
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Despite there being multiple search parties out looking for the Rev, Manfred and Fiji head out and, of course, immediately find him. Olivia brings her silver bullets and Lemuel Bridger (Peter Mensah) tries to reason with him because hey, why not. Obviously this ends in a vampire vs. weretiger fight and, honestly, these weretiger effects are not the worst. Vampire wins, with a sleeper hold or something and the threat is contained. He turns back into the Rev when the sun comes out (those effects are the worst) and buries the deputy he killed in an unmarked grave. No way is any of this going to come back to haunt the citizens of Midnight!
Bobo is released from jail after Manfred’s tip leads them to a Sons of Lucifer jacket downstream with her hair in the zipper. Case closed, her husband obviously did it, right? I suspect not, but we’ll see.
Back at Fiji’s house, there's a cupboard with locks of everyone in town’s hair and the demon voice is still demanding her attention. At least until Bobo drops by for a hug and an announcement that he’ll be looking to avenge Aubrey’s death.
Oh hey, that sheriff who released Bobo from jail? Yeah, Aubrey’s husband and the Sons of Lucifer blow up his car and then slip on masks exactly like the one she saw her killer wearing. So did he did do it? Looks like a yes. At least Manfred confirms that Aubrey and Bobo’s relationship wasn’t a scam; she did love him. Aw...
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Another aww: Creek stops by Manfred’s place to collect that kiss she was promised, and it makes me feel nothing. I am not sold on this couple.
Over at Joe and Chuy’s (Bernardo Saracino) house, Joe is gonna wrap this episode up with some exposition after unveiling a painting he made of angels and demons at war. So the veil between the living and the dead is fraying right where Midnight happens to be and that’s drawing evil to the town. Joe knows because he was there when it happened millennia ago, but a prophecy says an army is going to rise to fight it, and it sounds like Manfred is going to be the leader. Just in case, Joe isn’t telling anyone their lives are in danger or that they have a greater purpose. Why would he?!
Of note: In the close up of this gruesome scene, none of the demons have penises. Thanks, intrepid network censors!
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