On Wynonna Earp Season 3 Episode 9, things get rough and wild when the Earps are set off on two different paths: one in the hands of Bulshar's mind and one in the hands of Bulshar's ring.
Wynonna gets the short end of the stick when she must battle again and again in her own Groundhog Day-type situation. It's delightfully entertaining to watch and really gets at Melanie Scrofano's range.
It's one thing to make a fulfilling episode that involves the big bad -- but it's another to add a whole new layer of having to navigate the repeated scenarios and come up with new ones (so props to you, Wynonna Earp writers).
The stakes get increasingly higher, playing with increasing levels of dramatic irony between the Wynonna/Doc plot and the Waverly/Nicole/Jeremy plot. It's great to be able to balance only two plots versus the three that often happen in the same episode.
Forcing Doc and Wynonna into the same space is also extremely clever, given their deep and complicated history.
While it does end up a little complicated for the sake of the episode (as well as end up a little cheesy given the Doc projections), it does allow them to interact on a more emotional level.
Bulshar's ring also only gets more and more mysterious. In healing Mercedes' face but also burning the jeweler's, what does that tell us? Is it an evil ring or a good one? Is it controlled by the wearer?
It also gets more complicated when Bobo tells Waverly that it's in fact her father's ring, confirming many fan theories that have been floating around recently. This would support the idea that the ring helps good and hurts evil.
Many questions are also raised about Bulshar's powers. We know he enjoys screwing with Wynonna, but she has such an incredible amount of willpower and stubbornness that sheer mental force isn't going to do much good.
With one mind game aside, where can Bulshar go from here? At this point, Bulshar is proving to be more powerful than Wynonna in theory but not in practice. Sooner or later, there's probably going to need to be a huge face-off, Widow-bullet-splitting style.
Wynonna: The floor is melting, Doc! I'm out!
Doc: Wynonna, do not do anything foolish!
There's only three episodes left to solve some of these questions, and Mama Earp isn't even back yet. Things are going to get tricky.
Jeremy's and Robin's roles are also starting to get slightly muddier. Jeremy previously through in that he has some sort of empathetic powers because he was in a car crash when he was little -- but this was never touched on again.
I can't tell if this was just lazy storytelling or a way of dropping something for future usage, but he's such a strong comedic character that it seems like it would be a shame to waste that character information.
Wynonna: So you can't take Peacemaker. That's good to know. Tell you what: when I break this game, I'll shove her up your ass and blow your guts out through your brains. Willingly.
Jeweler: How did you say you came upon this ring?
Nicole: Uh, it's been in my family for generations. Yeah. It came right over on the boat, smuggled right up Granny Haught's petticoats.
He typically seems to act as an easy way to transfer our focus from one location to another, which seems like a cheap usage for his role. It'd be amazing to see his lab role increase or even see him in action with Wynonna or otherwise.
He did have a moment with the trees, so here's to the show explaining how he knew how to sense where Wynonna was. Otherwise, it's too much of a deus ex machina for the show to rely on.
This series always loves to play with our expectations, and we're not let down this episode either. The visual and aural playfulness of making us believe that characters are having sex, only to reveal something else, is brilliant.
Similarly, this episode doesn't fall into classic traps of a love story gone too long. Doc's narrative has twisted and turned, but there's always something fresh around every corner for Wynonna and Doc.
Nicole, I've never been so happy to hear your stupid, bossy voice!Wynonna
This time, they're trapped in Bulshar's mind. Previously, Doc turned into a vampire (and still is one!). You really can't get any more creative than that, and that's really the power of Wynonna Earp.
Bulshar's ring has also now occupied the focus of quite a few episodes, and seeing it pay off is great. However, the urgency to pay off the plot point is growing, considering all the other narrative plans flying around.
This aside, it was also great to see a familiar face back in town -- Mercedes! Not to mention her role in demonstrating the power of Bulshar's ring, which is bound to be influential in the future as well.
My face still looks like a goddamn charcuterie board!Mercedes
Only time will tell how everything will be able to fit together. It's complicated, it's a shitshow -- it's Wynonna Earp.
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What do you think is next for Bulshar's ring? What do you think its power holds? Let us know in the comments below!
Olivia Popp is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.