A rushed and over-stuffed episode still manages to get the show where it needs to be.
- 🤠 So much closure!
- 🤠 Everything about that Doc and Wynonna duel.
- 🤠 Nicole's big hero moment.
- 🤠 Everything moved far too fast to process.
- 🤠 We deserved more time with Dark Angel Waverly.
This post contains spoilers for Wynonna Earp.
Check out our last review here.
One of the most charming things about Wynonna Earp is the fact that unlike so many other genre shows with complex mythologies, the cult drama’s aim isn’t to inspire fans to untangle the mysteries and complicated plot developments like a puzzle to be solved. Wynonna Earp is an adventure, and what really matters is simply enjoying the ride. The show’s chaotic, whip-fast approach to storytelling means that, sure, sometimes you don’t quite always understand the mechanics or logic of certain events, but you do always understand the emotions behind them. This is certainly true of season four’s — and likely the series’ —penultimate episode, “Better Dig Two."
Picking up after Waverly (Dominique Provost-Chalkley) went full dark angel (and not the Jessica Alba kind), the action-packed installment finds the Earp sisters where we left them in the woods. Unlike Waverly, who was a warm ray of sunshine, Dark Waverly is calculating and detached, telling Wynonna (Melanie Scrofano) that the affairs of man — including those of her sister, Nicole (Katherine Barrell), and the rest of her chosen family — are no longer her concern. On top of that, Dark Waverly explains that Wynonna is no longer necessary as the Triangle's hero, since she can protect the Garden on her own. Never one to give up without a fight, Wynonna declares that she won’t idly sit back and watch Waverly become this "thing." But Dark Waverly clearly has an ironic sense of humor, since she then uses her powers to temporary blind Wynonna.
Now stranded alone in the woods unable to see, Wynonna is at the full mercy of Billy (Billy Bryk), who is still stalking her due to Cleo’s (Savannah Basley) shady spell casting. But when Billy approaches the vulnerable Wynonna, he is no longer a mindless, murdering reaper. That’s because including some of Wynonna’s hair with Jolene’s (Zoie Palmer) wasn’t Cleo’s only trick. The Clanton heir also manipulated Rachel (Martina Ortiz-Luis) into doing a spell to turn Billy back into a human by binding him to her forever. Though clearly this spell is part of a larger, malicious scheme by Cleo, it does work in Wynonna’s favor at the moment. That's because instead of tearing her limb from limb, the now-human Billy returns Peacemaker and helpfully guides her until she regains her sight.
So it’s together that Wynonna and Billy discover the next phase in Cleo’s master plan: kidnapping Rachel. Though Wynonna is initially reluctant to rush to Rachel’s aid due to her desire to save Waverly from herself, Billy refuses to let Wynonna abandon Rachel to his diabolical sister. Since Billy can’t return to the ranch without getting re-reaped, Wynonna sets off alone, returning to the scene of one of her greatest shames. But before she goes, Wynonna looks down at Peacemaker and pledges to do things different this time. We can only hope this is one promise she doesn’t break.
Meanwhile, back at Black Badge, Graham has thrown the injured Mercedes (Dani Kind) into the feed pen with Doc (Tim Rozon), Jeremy (Varun Saranga), and the others. Mercedes, narcissistic and oblivious as ever, can’t stop talking about how much she’s bleeding, which further incites Doc’s already growing bloodlust. Doing everything he can to stop Doc from killing Mercedes, Jeremy tells him that he’s already lost his love and his job, and if Doc feeds he’ll have lost his brother too. So, Jeremy offers Doc to feed on him instead. The cowboy slowly approaches Jeremy, but instead of eating him, Doc embraces him in a brotherly hug. With Doc now returned to his senses, Mercedes pitches that he save her life by turning her into a vampire, which is honestly such a natural character evolution for Mercedes that we’re shocked she didn’t find a way to get sired before this.
After getting her clear and verbal consent (“Get over here and suck me off already!”), Doc transforms Mercedes into a vampire. And together, their vamp strength is enough to bend the iron bars of the cell and escape. They lead the prisoner evacuation of Black Badge with the aid of Nicole (Katherine Barrell), who arrives on the scene just in time to stop Graham from executing the plan to make Purgatory just another Monument. Graham doesn't get off unscathed either, with Jeremy setting him up to be killed by the werewolf who was imprisoned in the feed pen with him.
While Nicole, Jeremy, and Doc may have saved the Triangle from BBD, no one is coming to save Wynonna from Cleo. Upon arriving at the ranch, Wynonna is greeted by a thrilled Cleo, who is eager to get her revenge and free herself from her own suffocating legacy. As she explains, becoming the Clanton heir isn’t just about trying to take down the Earps; it also comes with the added weight of having all her reaper ancestors constantly urging her to get revenge and leaving her without a moment of peace. In order to cut the ties between herself and the reapers, Cleo says she plans to turn Wynonna into the next Clanton heir, thus forcing her to kill everyone that means anything to her.
With Reaper Hoyt (Ty Olsson) holding Rachel hostage, Wynonna is unable to stop Cleo from performing the spell, but she's soon relieved when she finds herself unchanged by the magic. Unfortunately, that win is short-lived since Doc magically appears at the ranch, pulled by Cleo’s spell. Whether this was Cleo's plan all along or a cruel twist of fate, it's revealed that Doc is the actual new Clanton heir — and now he's dead set on killing Wynonna.
Facing off at the same spot Wynonna murdered Hoyt, Doc insists that they duel to the death. But when the countdown to shoot is finished, Wynonna refuses to turn and face Doc. Believing that her cowboy is still in there somewhere, Wynonna seemingly bets it all on Doc's moral code of never shooting someone in the back.
But the Clanton magic is more powerful than Doc’s honor, and near simultaneously both Wynonna and Doc take aim — Wynonna at a sign so that the bullet ricochets and hits Hoyt to free Rachel, and Doc at Wynonna. Only Doc’s gun backfires, hitting him instead. But this is no chance accident or evidence of divine intervention. Before Doc was magically transported to the ranch, he suspected what was coming and loaded the gun with the wrong bullets. How he knew, when all this went down, and what exactly made the bullets wrong are all questions that we don’t get clear answers to. But we don’t really need that clarification because we know what truly matters: that Doc was willing to take himself out to protect those he loves, including Wynonna.
Bleeding out on the ground, Doc begs Wynonna to kill him, ending his pain and stopping the reapers once and for all. She refuses, insisting that there is always another way. “Or perhaps a miracle,“ Dark Waverly dramatically suggests upon her well-timed arrival. A tearful Wynonna begs Dark Waverly to save Doc, saying that if she’s going to take away her sister than she could at least save the man they both love. Dark Waverly ultimately agrees in exchange for Doc giving back the book she had taken from the Garden. But Dark Waverly doesn't just heal Doc, she turns him back into a human. And maybe mercy is addictive, since on her way out Dark Waverly also frees Hoyt and all the Clanton reapers, turning them into birds.
Dark Waverly then sets off to claim her birthright in the Garden. But before she can go through the door, she’s stopped by Nicole, who had been alerted to her fiancée's plans thanks to a warning from Jeremy’s psychic crotch. Still working through her own guilt and trauma from the last time Wavelry entered the Garden, Nicole has no intentions of letting her love leave her behind again. Dark Waverly, whose detached demeanor has slowly begun to break down at this point, tells Nicole that Wynonna has served enough, and that it’s her turn to take on the burden of protecting the Triangle. So Nicole proposes a compromise: she’ll become the guardian of the Triangle in all realms, a role otherwise known as The Shield.
Dark Waverly is considering the proposition, but before she makes a final decision Nicole insists she look at the book Waves took from the Garden. Now that she’s embraced her angel self, Dark Wavelry can finally read the biography, and in it she sees that Nicole is a part of her story too. A clearly moved Dark Waverly explains to Nicole that if she does this, she’ll never be able to leave the Triangle again, but Nicole doesn’t hesitate to agree to these terms. And so Nicole is officially transformed into the Triangle’s Shield and Waverly returns to normal, throwing the book back into the Garden, whose doors close (hopefully for good).
With the threat from the fog and Garden gone, Jeremy having taken out the BBD trash, and Doc and Wynonna back to giving each other heart eyes after that near-death experience, things are finally back as they should be in Purgatory. And so Nicole wastes no time in pointing point out that it’s about damn time they start focusing on what really matters around these parts: the impending WayHaught wedding. And you know what, she’s not wrong!
We’ve been waiting a full season to watch Nicole and Waverly celebrate their love, and the couple has been through so much in the interim. After this breakneck rollercoaster of an episode, we are just as in need of some time to slow down and cherish this chosen family as the characters probably are. Here’s to hoping Wynonna Earp doesn’t have too many more surprises in store for the finale that would get in the way of the perfect wedding that WayHaught — and the fans — deserve.
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