HAVEN “The Hand You’re Dealt” Review


Audrey gets more Colorado Kid clues and people die fiery deaths in the “The Hand You’re Dealt” episode of HAVEN. Duke takes Audrey to see Vanessa, the babysitter who was with him the day of the Colorado Kid. She doesn’t remember anything about that day, but the idea of it upsets her and triggers her ability to see how people die. After she is present when both the high school principal’s car blows up and a student boils in a pool, Nathan and Audrey suspect her of being behind the killings, but she helps prevent an explosion and leads them to a potential disaster where they find the real firestarter, a misfit student named Matt.

Angry teen and pyrokinesis are definitely not a good combination, and Matt is seriously creepy when he got excited about his killing powers. Who doesn’t love a good case of spontaneous human combustion? I like that Audrey feels guilty for what she did but also seems to accept that she did what she had to do to protect everyone in that field.. Vanessa seeing bits of what people see before they die is a bit too much of a light version of “Clyde Bruckman’s Final Repose,” but it gets us clues in the Colorado Kid case and brings Duke onto the team, so I’ll take it.

Duke is now on the same “screw fate” team with Nathan and Audrey, which should make for a fabulously awkward dynamic. The Duke-Nathan bickering is awesome, especially when mixed with moments where they actually work together well (love the grill-dumping scene with the very awkward pause before the boom) or show some caring. Julia seems to be along for the ride, too, but I need to see more of her before I decide how I feel about that other than knowing I miss her mom.

I love that Nathan keeps finding reasons to touch Audrey and that he continuously jabs himself. He’s been starved of feeling someone for so long that it must be almost overwhelming for him, giving him a compulsive need to test it and himself. He still hasn’t told her he can feel her, and apparently no one from the party has, either. I`m actually not sure how you start that conversation, but I hope Nathan tells her soon because she`s beginning to think he`s losing it. One thing, though–when Nathan asks Duke if meeting someone he can feel is fate, Duke assumes Nathan is talking about Jess. Did he not he hear Nathan say he could feel Audrey after he shot the shapeshifter in last week’s “As You Were” episode?

According to Vanessa, Duke will die when an arm with a maze tattoo with a figure at each corner reaches for him–just like the Colorado kid did. Nathan and Audrey have already seen the tattoo on a dead body, so it must be something very connected to the Troubles, but I’ll still put my money on Duke. Poor Duke isn’t have good luck with women, though. Vanessa could have been a good match for him.

The photographer talking about the clawed men coming out of the water is surreal and I love how Julia is willing to hand over her mom’s notes on the Colorado Kid even after Eleanor never even mentioned having notes. Audrey feeling that she triggered Vanessa’s ability is interesting in that we don’t know how much Audrey does affect the Troubles, for good or bad. I’m glad she’s becoming aware that it is an issue

Sadly, there is no Vince, Dave, or sheriff, but Haven is definitely upping the stakes on their central mystery with Duke now in the crosshairs and it`s making the episodes more compelling. I like the drips of information we’re getting about the Colorado Kid and Lucy, and tying it into the case of the week is a great bonus.

What did you think of “The Hand You’re Dealt?” Why do you think Nathan hasn’t yet told Audrey he can feel her?

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  • 2mfns

    Nice review &:) Nathan could be overwhelmed at his new feelings with Audrey’s touch and is coming to terms with his emotional feelings as well. After being numb physically/emotionally for so long he’s possibly trying to make sense of it all… even guys who can feel have reservations about letting someone they like know it. Love all the small expressions between the characters! (Julia should show a little more emotion at the loss of her mother even if they had ‘issues’ though. We liked Eleanor and will miss her.)
    Haven is our favorite show… really curious about “The Trial of Audrey Parker”… can’t wait!

    • Thanks!

      Julia really is pretty casual about her mom’s death, isn’t she? “Oh, yeah, I’m taking over for her and you can look at her notes. Let’s get a drink.” I’m definitely mourning Eleanor more than her. 😉

      I agree that Nathan is trying to make sense of what he’s feeling–does he have romantic feelings for Audrey or is he simply reacting to the fact that he can feel her touch? However it turns out, their relationship is becoming a fascinating one.

  • Alyssa

    Excellent review, as always.

    I think that nobody knows that Nathan can feel Audrey. I’m pretty sure he bent over close the chameleon so that only the chameleon could hear that part.

    Also, I love those moments when Nathan makes excuses to touch Audrey. It breaks my heart to see his face after though; so sad and full of longing for real human connection.

    • Thanks–I wasn’t sure if anyone could hear Nathan or not when he was bent over the chameleon, but you’re probably right that no one did and I’ll happily go with that. It does make for a better story.

      I am so impressed with how Lucas Bryant is playing this–I absolutely agree that his expressions are heartnreaking.

  • Fantastic review – as always. I’m so glad you’re reviewing this show. It’s great and I really feel like not enough people are watching and blogging about it.

    I love how Lucas Bryant is playing Nathan’s turmoil about the touching thing. I was not sold on Nathan in the beginning. I loved Audrey (Emily Rose is fantastic at deadpan humor.) But Nathan took awhile to grow on me. I felt like he was too stiff in the beginning, but it was a good call, because seeing him reveal his emotions, little by little, at this point is so much more effective.

    And I echo all the comments about missing Eleanor — Julia is a poor subsitute. She’ll really need to step it up if I’m going to be OK with her joining the team.

    • Thanks for the kind words, and I agree that more people should be watching Haven–it’s really come into its own.

      Very good point about Lucas Bryant being stiff in the beginning and then peeling the layers slowly, and I totally agree. Nathan is really becoming one of the most interesting characters around.

      I’m hoping that Julia just wasn’t introduced that well and that her character will grow with the show and on me. 🙂

    • You’re welcome. I recently found this website and I’m enjoying it.

      I’m also hoping that Julia will grow on me. I think that this show actually manages to do that with their characters. Nathan and Jess were both characters that I didn’t really like (right off the bat) but, over time, I understood why they were the way they were. I’m hoping Julia is similar.

      I’m afraid SyFy won’t give this show a second season, which would be a shame, because I feel like this is one of those shows that needed a season to find it’s footing and to set up the mythology. Chances are quite high that the 2nd season would blow this one out of the water. I also feel like they didn’t advertise it very well — I just happened to stumble across information about this show on tv.com and decided to give it a try. If I hadn’t done that, I would never have even heard about it. (Even ew.com didn’t psot a review that was easy to find, which is bizarre because King used to have a column there.)