There’s an art required to surviving murder high school. That’s how you pass. Live or die. Pass or fail. Grades are seemingly meaningless in these classrooms as it’s either learn how to kill or fall, victim. Of course, any school has something to strive for whether it’s clubs, sports, or high honors and King’s Dominion seems to be no different. In order to achieve high honors, you need to survive… and probably kill a lot. I suspect characters like Viktor, Brandy, and Saya would all make the high honors list. What do these characters have in common? They’re legacies of course, but they also know how to play the game, and in order to survive your time at King’s Dominion you have to learn how to play the game. It’s that cut and dry. This is a high school filled with some of the world’s most dangerous teenagers. Some of which who have spent their entire lives, like Chico or Maria, involved in this kind of world. The advantage that Legacies have is at times insurmountable leaving the Rats scratching and clawing their way through the game. In “The Clampdown”, Deadly Class begins to divide our Rats and Legacies a bit more clearly. Sides are picked as students begin to play their hands and the results are a little surprising.
Right off the bat, we’re hit with a bit of a shocker. Shabnam, our resident joke of a student, seems to be more adept at survival then we maybe gave him credit for. All season long he’s kind of been the butt of the majority of jokes as he’s been beaten, beaten with sex toys, looked to pay for sex, and kind of ignored leaving Shab a bit unsuspecting. If you recall a couple of episodes ago when Shabnam got furious with Marcus for saving him from a Viktor beating, a strange thing to be angry about, and now Shab’s motivations are becoming a bit more clear. He’s there to learn everything about everyone. All strengths and all weaknesses and as long as he keeps this unsuspecting air up he’s golden. The thing is, his motivations have been at the forefront this entire time. Ever since his introduction, Shabnam has described himself as the person in the background just soaking things up unnoticed, and in “The Clampdown” we see just what he’s learned.
Presenting Madame Gao with Marcus’s notebook is a huge power move. For starters, how did Shabnam even obtain it?! That notebook seems to be constantly glued to Marcus’s hands and rightfully so as it includes every little detail about things happening at King’s Dominion. Mostly the trip to Vegas and its fallout. That’s some major information to poses considering how things throughout the school have been unraveling since then. Shab makes an interesting move with his newly found information and chooses to gift Madame Gao with the notebook and not Master Lin showing that even the students are picking up on the division within the King’s Dominion faculty. In the comics, Shabnam presents the book to Lin which leads me to believe that Lin might not be long for this world. Gao has acted more like the Lin within the pages of the comic while Lin has acted… I’m not entirely sure. But quietly Gao has obtained a following of students that also include Brandy and Viktor giving her some serious Legacy power along with the knowledge of what really happened in Vegas which is incredibly important.
Lin also knows the truth behind Vegas and what he does with that information could lead to his downfall thus furthering my Madame Gao King’s Dominion takeover for season two. With Maria killing another student last week, one of Saya’s Kuroki Syndicate pals, tensions are high. Lin is suddenly losing his grip over the school he’s run for years, and after a brief attempt to kill Saya by the Soto Vatos, things are spilling into the hallways. As we’ve discussed in the past, the one rule of murder school is you don’t kill other students and that rule has been broken twice now. There has even been an attempt of murder on school grounds. That can’t stand so Lin locks down the entire school as he looks for answers. Answers he finds in Marcus who sneaks out of his room to try and broker a truce between Saya and Maria and gets caught because he’s an idiot.
I’m not going to lie, I was a bit shocked and disappointed that Marcus gave up the goods during his interrogation. I want to believe that comic Marcus wouldn’t do that, but I understand the shows decision to have him do so. Lin is the Head Master of this school and I can’t believe that he either didn’t know or wouldn’t learn what happened in Vegas. Switching things up and having Shab give the notebook to Gao creates an issue. Through the use of home videos, and some pretty graphic dead parent imagery, Lin is able to piece everything together as he preys on Marcus’s search for a father figure. And instead of getting angry he rewards Marcus and the rest of the gang by covering for them. There is no doubt that Lin telling Chico’s family that his death was a simple drug deal gone bad blows up in Lin’s face. No. Doubt. Don’t forget that Gao and F-Face also know exactly what happened in Vegas making it only a matter of time before El Diablo finds the truth. Then what happens to Lin? This is exactly what Gao needs to make a power move.
As for the rest of the group, it would appear with Lin not dropping the hammer on them that they’re in the clear, but nothing is further from the truth. Everything in their lives is so fragile right now and instead of banding together there seems to be a clear division amongst the Rats. There is some very real beef between Saya and Maria after the attempted murder and lunchroom fist fight. Then sprinkle in a little bit of love triangle and things are damn near combustible at this point. Marcus sides with Maria but clearly his heart wants to side with Saya throwing in a bit more division as Saya is now turning to Willie for friendship. Do not forget about that Saya wrinkled nose smile as she talks with Willie. That’s incredibly important for things going forward not to mention Willie calling out Marcus on his b.s.. Yes, everything has to be about Marcus and the others in the group are taking notice and getting fed up. This is a major problem. Marcus has now told the group about the F-Face problem and the ensuing assault on F-Face manor to get Chico’s head. How are these Rats going to be able to pull this off if with such clear dissension in their ranks? I have a feeling that Lin isn’t going to be able to protect them for much longer, and then what? Finals…
Some other quick thoughts before I leave you-
- Everything that happened in Petra’s room with Billy and Lex was gold. Everything. From the proposed threesome, to glue huffing, to Lex’s backstory, to Petra flipping things around and establishing dominance over the two boys. Loved it.
- “Thank God, I’m starving” was line of the night. Hands down. Viktor’s Bon Jovi comment was probably a close second.
- Marcus would be the worst person to play Monopoly with.
- Why do all these people think they can step to Saya suddenly?! Like you guys, it’s effin’s Saya!
- Seriously keep an eye on all things Willie and Saya related.
- I don’t think Madame Gao is wrong, Maria is sort of a cancer right now and I love the character but let’s be I honest, she’s too much of a wild card. Her unpredictability is a problem and it’s causing division among the Rats too. How much longer can she spin out of control like this?
- With two episodes left, ugh, I’m starting to believe that this season is going to end right around the conclusion of volume two of the graphic novels. There’s still so much left to explore that I doubt they’re going to cram in a bunch of major story elements before the season ends without letting them breathe first.
- Lin is dying guys… I’ve got this feeling. His story is the most different from the comic and I have no idea what to make of it. Either he dies or he establishes some major dominance but it’s not looking good.
There you have it Geeklings, what did you think of this week’s Deadly Class? Things seem to be falling apart all over the place. How do you like Lin’s odds right now? Is Maria the real problem? Does Gao have the power team? Sound off in the comments. If you’d like to talk more Deadly Class with yours truly, either show or comic, you can find me on Twitter @iamgeek32. You can also find me there every Wednesday night live Tweeting along with the episode. Only two episodes left guys… it’s about to get real. Until next week my future disrupters of America.
Kevin Carey is an
unapologetic geek who strongly
believes his mind works much like an episode of
Community. Has a strong love for pop culture that focuses on
TV, comics, movies,
and books. Kevin also enjoys writing fiction and has self published a short
Amazon. While awaiting his Hogwarts acceptance letter, Kevin lives on
Long Island with his cat and extensive
Pop Vinyl collection. You can find him here on Fan Fest, at his blog I Am Geek, or the I Am Geek Podcast spreading geekiness to all.