Wednesday, August 4, 2021

‘Motherland: Fort Salem’ Recap: Season 2, Episode 1 “Of The Blood”

The season 2 premiere of Motherland: Fort Salem kicked off with a huge bang as we revisited the cause of that season 1 finale blast, Tally’s new role as a Biddy, and gave us the reunion we’ve been waiting for! Let’s dive right into the recap for “Of The Blood.”

The episode begins with a young woman preparing to sing a church choir solo in front of a congregation. Her father smiles encouragingly but as she sings the stained glass behind her melts away. Some of the congregation flee while others stand in shock and record the incident. When she finishes singing she turns around to find the entire window has melted away.

Just hours after the season 1 finale the U.S. Army team are headed home on the rescue plane. Everyone believes Abigail and Raelle to be dead, and Tally and Adil mourn their loss together. He asks Tally what being a Biddy feels like, but the other Biddies silently warn her not to speak of it. She leaves his side as a rescued child runs up to Adil. He can’t sleep and shows Adil the trinket given to him by one of the witches; it’s Raelle’s family charm. General Alder steps in to help the boy by singing an ancient song her own mother sang for her. Together, she and the Biddies sing for the boy as they journey home.

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Meanwhile, Scylla confronts Willa about her mission and the truth. Scylla is furious she was sent in blind for Willa’s personal mission and the Spree attack at the wedding. Willa informs her that was not the Spree, and shares a vision with Scylla. In it, Willa meets with six other leads of the Spree to celebrate a victory at a restaurant. However, one of the unconscious patrons awakes and attacks with a device that inflicts the same strange illness that Khalida had in season 1. It kills all of the leaders almost instantly. Willa is spared only because she’d moved across the restaurant and flees. Back in the present, Willa tells Scylla that the Camarilla (an ancient enemy determined to wipe out all witches) has returned. Willa asks Scylla to join her in hunting the Camarilla, they must focus on the Camarilla if they want to survive.

The rescue plane arrives home where Petra tearfully watches them disembark. Alder gives her condolences but Petra calls her out for being reckless and out of control. Alder says Abigail’s choice to go on the mission was a brave one, and Petra says “I mark you with this, Sarah” before walking away. Anacostia hugs Tally and they share a moment of sorrow on the tarmac. The generals, including Petra who is a soldier first and mother second, gather in a meeting room to discuss the blast, where it’s revealed its affecting climate in perceptible ways. The radius is also diminishing but is noticeably on the move. Petra received word that the Spree was attacked one week ago and six were killed by the same weaponized plague. The pieces fall into place as the generals realize the Camarilla made their attacks look like the Spree to buy time. They’ve been harvesting the vocal cords of witches and have figured out how to turn them into weapons. A soldier enters and tunes the television to the news where reports are covering the strange church incident in the opening scene. The young woman is Penelope, the daughter of Vice President Silver. Alder says they must test her immediately and find any others who don’t know they are witches before the Camarilla.

Back in the field, Raelle and Abigail hike to find the outpost. They’ve traveled roughly 10 miles and are still in the blast radius, Abigail points out while calling Raelle shitbird again. “If you keep calling me shitbird every two seconds it’s not going to be special anymore,” jokes Raelle. Both carry marks of the blast on their skin though it appears to be healing. The outpost is still 60 miles away, but they stumble upon a decomposing body covered in mushrooms from their blast. Abigail thinks they have to show someone, but Raelle wants to keep it secret. As they argue, a unit of soldiers finds and collars them until they can be identified (and make sure they aren’t Spree parading as soldiers).

Freeform/Jeff Petry

Tally brings Alder a book in the office and Alder asks her to take a seat. She thanks her for her choice to become a Biddy in the field, but tells Tally that Biddies are usually given years to prepare and specially selected. Alder offers Tally the sever the connection, but Tally says she made a choice and she stands by it. Still, Alder tells her the option is there if she wants it. A knock at the door calls Alder away, where she receives some news. Tally reacts almost instantly with joy and whips around to confirm what she feels and collapses with relief. Raelle and Abigail are alive and on their way to Fort Salem. That’s all it takes for Tally to change her mind and take Alder’s offer to return to War College with her unit. On the plane, Abigail and Raelle continue their argument about whether to tell anyone about the blast. Raelle doesn’t trust Alder, but Abigail asks Raelle to trust her.

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Vice President Silver meets with Alder in her office to discuss the events with Penelope. Alder explains the matriline to Silver. Men can be born with the work but it’s not passed to their offspring, therefore the government traces witchhood through the matriline, mother to daughter. Silver’s wife wasn’t aware she was a witch, but she’s passed and so she can’t be tested or asked. Penelope must be tested but Sliver is worried about painting a target on his daughter’s back. Alder reiterates that if she’s a witch, Penelope must serve in the military as the law demands. Silver complies but it’s clear he’s not happy about what this means for Penelope and his future granddaughters.

Petra is waiting in front of Fort Salem as Abigail and Raelle arrive. She immediately pulls Abigail into a tight hug. Abigail tries to apologize but Petra says her actions were a true Bellweather move and perhaps makes Abigail the greatest yet. Raelle asks to see Tally, but is cut off when Petra hugs her as well. They go inside to find Tally undergoing the de-Biddy process. The tie is severed and a youthful Tally stumbles to Abigail and Raelle but collapses. Another Biddy takes her place. Tally wakes in the infirmary and the trio are reunited. Tally tells them she could hear orders but not memories, “And I could hear the Biddies. It was like being in a car with the same people on a road trip that never ends. No privacy, like ever.” Raelle and Abigail confirm that the blast was them, but they aren’t sure how they did it. Tally is very defensive when Raelle says she doesn’t trust Alder, hinting that the connection isn’t as severed as they think. Abigail realizes their new power might help defeat the Camarilla.

Freeform/Jeff Petry

Khalida and Adil walk in the garden. Khalida wants to move on but Adil thinks Fort Salem could be their home. Adil doesn’t want to run anymore and Khalida asks him to consider their options, he agrees.

Raelle and Abigail give a moment-by-moment account of the attack to Alder. Abigail cuts to the chase and Raelle tells Alder they caused the blast. They don’t understand the power but will master it. Alder asks them to continue giving a detailed account of what exactly happened.

Willa and Scylla sit on the stoop of their hideout and discuss the events that followed the attack on Spree leadership. Willa led the attack on the Brussels soccer stadium, but she chose to warn all witches of the Camarilla rather than carry out the attack. Scylla notices a spot on the ceiling of the porch, “That’s a fetch” she says. Scylla rebuts the tracker, and it’s revealed Anacostia is the spy.

Abigail and Raelle finish their debriefing with Alder instructing the generals to train them to master this power. Abigail wants answers about the Camarilla and the wedding attack, but Alder refuses to answer her questions. Outside they find Adil and Khalida. Abigail and Adil immediately embrace with a kiss. Khalida returns Raelle’s charm and then asks her if she can save her brother who has seen too much suffering. Inside, Raelle calls her father but can’t disclose any details about her mission to him. He asks about Scylla and Raelle tells him they broke up. “Her great loss,” he says. Later that night, Adil and Abigail meet outside to have some steamy sex that literally causes an earthquake. Alder finds Tally in the infirmary where Tally confides that she’s missed Alder though it’s only been one day. Alder tells her their bond will endure and Tally may feel as if she’s lost a child or a mother. It’ll fade with time but it will never go away.

Several high-level military officials, including Alder, attend Penelope’s test for the work. They do a few examinations and then Alder tells her to feel the power in her blood and then sing. She does so, and the water in the basin before her swirls and forms tall tendrils. “She is of the blood!” announces Alder. Penelope will begin military training following her oath.

Freeform/Jeff Petry

Willa and Scylla change their faces and visit a memorial at the site of a Spree attack. People leave flowers and light candles while a man talks about his belief that the military aren’t doing enough to contain the Spree. “Hate is a disease. Find patient zero,” Willa tells her. Scylla agrees to the mission.

The trio visits the infirmary, where Abigail tells them it’s more than just sex with Adil, she cares about him. Anacostia arrives and asks for their medals. She changes them to reflect their new enrollment in War College rather than Combat Ready. They celebrate with a drink as Anacostia congratulates them. Alder sits awake in her bed, but Tally is asleep and has a nightmare of being deployed with Alder in a jungle. They are attacked and huge bugs crawl up their bodies stinging them. She wakes screaming, and Raelle and Abigail try to comfort her. But Tally lifts her shirt to find marks along her torso, it was more than just a dream.

Motherland: Fort Salem airs Tuesdays on Freeform at 10 p.m. ET/ 9 p.m. CT.

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Brianna
Brianna works full time in the publishing industry, passionately building books to bring to the masses. Her first fandom was Harry Potter, which she joined at age 11. Her love for books took her abroad to earn her Masters Degree at University College London, after which she lived in New York City, and now resides in Austin. She loves all things fandom including Supernatural, Doctor Who, and more. Ever the introvert, she can usually be found reading, playing with her dog, listening to music and practicing yoga. Brianna joined the Nerds and Beyond staff in 2018 where she unites her love for all things "nerd" with her passion for writing. Find her on Twitter here: @bookbag09

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