Grimm Season 4 episode 17 recap: “Hibernaculum”

grimm-nbc-hiberniculum-bodies Lori Acken

As we being this week’s Grimm, sad Nick is eating alone at home. He sadly looks at a picture of him and Juliette from before and, sadly, lays it face down. Did I mention he is sad?

Meanwhile, in a no less sad place, Renard is at home, presumably after the throwdown with Prince Kenneth (not a very Royal name, I must add) checking out his battle wounds. Juliette barges in all hot under the collar asking where Adalind is and if she’s still in town, because Juliette is going to kill her. Renard admits that’s a pretty good idea but things got complicated with the new Prince, and he also wants his key back because it’s not a lot of fun having Juliette around acting all Hexenbitch (amiright?). She peels off her shirt so they can “finish what we started,” then pokes Renard in one of his gunshot wounds. Apparently he likes the rough stuff and they get busy.

About this time, a guy in an elderly SUV has a breakdown in the middle of nowhere. He spies a farmhouse in the distance and goes for help. He seems to be freezing, though the day seems relatively nice for the Portland area. At the farmhouse an older woman is talking to her daughter on the phone when the cold man comes to the door. He asks for help, but the daughter tells her mom not to answer the door, which turns out to be very good advice. The woman tells the stranger that she’ll call him a tow truck and he doesn’t take it well. He goes around to the side of the house and kicks the door down and forces himself on the older woman, Woges into a scaly critter with huge fangs and chomps down on her neck, freezing her solid. He then walks away, leaving the woman in a literally petrified state.

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The victim is one Esther Blake, and the cops are having trouble piecing this one together. Her body was found, two hours prior and it is still frozen in position despite the fact that the house is 72 degrees. They discover the bite to her neck and Wu immediately suspects that they have a Wesen problem on their hands. Only the woman’s car, a Toyota Corolla was taken. An interview with the daughter tells them nothing more than what they already know.

That night as Nick and Hank are driving down the lonely country roads, they get a call from Wu telling them that the Toyota was spotted by the State Police.

Monroe is enjoying a less than quiet evening at home. As he’s working on a clock his hands begin to shake and he flashes back to his encounter with the Wesen KKK. He shaken up to the point that he Woges on Rosalee as she comes in the door. He tells her that he’s having a tough time (get it?).

The Killer is driving the stolen Corolla when he rides up on a Police roadblock waiting for him. He pulls a Rockford and starts heading the other direction with the Smokies in hot pursuit. Coming the other way is Hank and Nick, lights flashing, and Wu joins them in the chase. They bear down on the killer in a pincer move and they and the State Police pin him in. The killer manages to flee into the nearby woods and Hank, Nick and Wu give chase. As they chase him, the killer starts to get cold again. Nick uses his super Grimm hearing to eventually corner the guy who realizes that he’s being pursued by a Grimm. He begs Wu and Hank not to let Nick kill him. They take him in without a fight.

Grimm - Season 4

Back at HQ, they discover the killer, Knut Gunderson, is in town from North Dakota. No sooner do they learn all this than Wu comes in telling Nick and Hank that there’s a problem with the suspect. It seems he has frozen to death in his cell. Word comes down that Gunderson’s broken down SUV has been found.

Captain Renard’s night is going from bad to worse. He wakes up in pain, some of which was likely inflicted by Juliette, if you catch my drift. He checks himself out in the mirror and is dismayed to see his gunshot wounds begin to bleed again. He flashes back to his murder and subsequent trip to the ER. Then the walls seem to part and he hallucinates a giant pair of red clawed hands reach for him. He collapses.

The following day, Nick and Hank are searching Gunderson’s abandoned SUV and realize that he wasn’t traveling alone and now there are possibly two more freezy monsters on the loose. Not cool. 😉

Back in the city, the Royals are hanging out in their Royal hotel suite going over the situation about the stolen baby, the Grimm and the new Hexenbeast. Kenneth orders his henchman to tap Nick’s phone, certain that his Mother will be in touch. Adalind joins them complaining that none of her clothes fit because she’s super preggers. Kenneth sends her and a lackey out shopping.

Yet another guy is walking down the road freezing. He is spotted by a passing nurse who stops to help him, offering to take him to the hospital. He gets in the car shivering but before they drive off, he attacks the good samaritan, Woging into the same creature as before, and lunges for her neck. She fends him off, and flees down the road. He crawls out of the car in pursuit, but he freezes solid before he gets too far.

Adalind and the henchman stop for some window shopping. Juliette is across the street stalking them and Adalind catches her reflection in the store window, but when she turns around, Juliette isn’t there. Juliette uses her Hexenbitch powers to try and drop a gargoyle onto Adalind’s head, but the henchman is too quick and tackles Adalind out of harm’s way. Juliette splits, but Adalind knows she is being hunted.

Nick and Hank are out at the trailer going through the Grimm archives, but there is no mention of the type of Wesen they’re looking for in any of the books. They decide to see if Monroe and Rosalee might have answers, so they make for the Herb Shop where Rosalee and Monroe are moving a bunch of boxes. Monroe and Rosalee are pretty sure that the Wesen in question is a Varmative, a Norwegian “Heat Thief” model that can’t generate it’s own body heat and has to steal it from humans. They are ordinarily harmless, which explains why it wasn’t in the book, but will kill when desperate. It’s hibernation season and the killers were likely heading to their Hibernaculum, where they bed down for the winter.

Juliette comes in looking for some help, claiming she’s losing herself to the Hexenbitch within. At first Rosalee is confused, but when Nick and Hank walk in from the back, Juliette, at Nicks urging, reveals her dirty little secret. Juliette mocks them and blames everyone for her trouble (I’d have to say she’s not exactly wrong, but she’s making it difficult to want to help her). She storms out. Rosalee is sure they can fix Juliette, but Nick is pretty confident that ship has sailed. Wu calls and tells the boys they’ve found another frozen dude, and they leave with Monroe to have a look. Rosalee has a little freakout after everyone leaves.

At the scene of the nurse attack, the second Varmative is still frozen in place. Turns out, the trio of Wesen are brothers and they likely split up in desperation because they would never catch a ride together, nor would there be enough body heat to go around. They speculate that there may be a relative in town who has the Hibernaculum.

Back in the city, the third Varmative is catching a cab ride. He’s in the back of the car freezing, and when the cabbie asks him where he’s heading, the guy Woges and bites the cabbie. The detectives arrive on the scene, and realize that the cabbie isn’t a Varmative, which means the killer is on the loose in the stolen cab, probably heading for the hibernation spot. Previously, they found out that there are 7 Gunderson’s in the Portland area. Wu informs them that their likely suspect is Sven, a dude with snake tattoos who’s family has a farm outside of town.

Meanwhile Adalind and Kenneth are having it out back at the hotel. Adalind insists they kill Juliette, but Kenneth is pretty sure she’s more useful alive. Plus, he clearly does not want to take orders from a harpy like Adalind.

Nick, Hank, Wu and Monroe are out at the farm later that night. The place looks pretty empty. They approach cautiously, but since they can’t see anyone they decide to break in. The house is freezing, but further investigation leads them to a room that is as abnormally warm as the rest of the house is abnormally cold. They find a trap door hidden under a rug. In the basement they come across a pile of what appears to be sleeping bodies. It’s a whole pack of hibernating Varmatives. Sven is sleeping in the middle of the pile, of course, and when the boys try to untangle the mass of bodies they all start to wake up.



Within moments, the entire clan is awake and mightily pissed. The boys break for the stairs hoping to get to their cars before they’re mobbed. Outside, they realize that they’ll never get to the vehicles, so they hightail it to a nearby barn, where they find the stolen cab. The team barricades themselves in before the masses descend. Two of the burlier Varmatives get in through a side window so Hank and Nick have a fight. The rest of the swarm force the front doors open where Wu and Monroe are. Fortunately, the mob starts to freeze and, one by one, collapse to the ground. Realizing the mob are innocents the boys return them all to the pile in the basement, hoping that none of them die. Except Sven, who froze to death in the barn.

The boys all realize that there is absolutely no way they can write a report about what just happened so they all agree that they were never at the farmhouse. Sven is another matter, but since the they have the stolen cab, they park it in the city and plant Sven’s frozen body behind the wheel.


Case Closed (sort of, because there is no case, right?).

Nick is back at his sad home. He gets wistful about his relationship but remembers his Aunt telling him that being a Grimm is a rough life and he should dump Juliette. But he didn’t and now he’s sad.

New episodes of Grimm air Friday nights at 8/7CT on NBC.

(Photo by: Scott Green/NBC)