Robb takes the trio to Alaska to seek help from his tribe. Maddie tries to deter Robb from asking too many questions about their gruesome discovery.
On Siren Season 3 Episode 7, Ryn, Ben and Maddie must recruit new allies in the fight against Tia; Helen seeks answers when she’s haunted by Donna’s spirit; Tia obtains dangerous weapons she plans to use in her fight.
For her first Siren credit, Director Marita Grabiak filmed a beautiful episode. Visually, it’s one of my favourites of the whole series. Siren also introduced a new tribe of mermaids that are incredibly unique, but still true to species in real life. I love that so far each new tribe has had something different about them physiologically. Katrina’s tribe have orange markings and can camouflage. Robb’s tribe is pale and all of them are born female (!). They use a special pool to transition into males for procreation.
In addition to meeting Robb’s tribe, we also learned more about Helen’s connection to the spirit world. Donna is reaching out to her because her spirit is not at peace. Again, the writers continue to impress me with the little moments pointing to the importance of life and burials to the mermaids. In Episode 1 Tia told Ben that Donna should be in the ocean, not in the military lab. Then Ryn wanted to retrieve the bodies from the island in Episode 6. In this episode, we see that Tia has given her tribe members proper burials, but left Ryn’s tribe members to rot on land.
Ryn also shows great concern/sadness for a taxidermy bear after having seen a real one. Bodies are to be given back, not kept. What frustrates me with this though, it that Ben tells Ryn that he’s been injecting himself with the same thing his mother was and Ryn isn’t concerned about where Ben is getting his stem cells from. I expected her to be more upset. Unless she doesn’t understand or realize what Ben has really been doing to get the cells, I don’t buy that she would be okay with it. Once again Maddie is left in the dark.
To Be Human
Robb drops a bomb on Ryn and company when he reveals that he can no longer transform. After transitioning from female to male, he left to try and save his tribe from pollution. But the back and forth between water and land made transforming longer and more painful. Eventually, he stopped transforming altogether.
This reality is quite sobering for Ryn. She doesn’t want to choose between water and land. Especially now that she has Hope, who is out being trained in the water. It should be noted that Robb’s permanent form came after years of going back and forth. Ryn hasn’t been on land for more than a few months at a time, so initially, I wasn’t sure that this is really something she needs to worry about right now. However, the signs we’ve seen this season with her not being able to heal as quickly point toward this hurdle possibly coming up faster than we think.
It also brings into question the whole matter of her relationship with Ben and Maddie, the future of her tribe, and raising her daughter. She wanted Hope to learn about life in the water and on land. Her loves are on land. But she’s also leader of her tribe. She can’t just abandon them. I foresee Ryn possibly leaving for a much longer time after this season to be with her daughter and her tribe. Ben has convinced himself that maybe with enough injections he’ll be able to visit Ryn in the water if she has to stay but that can’t be sustainable. We don’t know if the effects are long-lasting. Eventually, he’s going to need a new stem cell source and finding another mermaid won’t be easy.
As Ben and Maddie grow more distant and awkward, Robb and Maddie’s relationship becomes more intimate. Through the various scenes between them as pairings or a group, the writers again touch on the whole theme of Change. The songs selected for this episode (particularly the last two of the episode), also have to do with change. The truth is, our main characters are changing – or being confronted by change = whether we like it or not. Ryn is physically and emotionally becoming more human. Ben is becoming addicted to the stem cells and is more like a mermaid. Maddie hasn’t changed much. But she’s directing most of her interest towards Robb and his project.
Ben clearly still feels some type of way about Maddie leaving him. He implies that Maddie is the one out of the three of them that has changed. This worries Ryn, who is concerned Maddie no longer has feelings for her. Maddie reassures Ryn that her feelings for Robb will never change how special Ryn is to her. While it’s clear that Maddie likes Robb a lot, she admits that he’s not “love” for her. I would even venture to say that Maddie is still very much in love with Ben.
As much as I love Robb and I like him and Maddie together, I don’t like where this seems to be headed. It’s all too convenient for them to introduce someone that happens to be like both Ben and Ryn in one for Maddie. It feels like a deliberate move to hurriedly end the trio’s relationship and sideline Maddie.
With Ben and Ryn growing even closer and keeping more secrets from her, it feels like a slap in the face for fans of the trusting relationship they spent two whole seasons developing. Ryn’s romantic interest in both Ben and Maddie was a new direction for a mermaid series. The polyamorous relationship actually happening is another element that really set this show apart. It was done in a way that felt genuine. The writing played to the strength of the actors’ collective chemistry. So if the writers are now going the cliche route, I’ll be very disappointed.
The Siren Song
The writers are finally bringing the siren song and its effects back into play, after over half a season. The song has been the through-line for the entire series. It has influenced everything that has happened so far in one way or another. Maddie rightfully assesses that the only way for Tia to do real damage to the humans who vastly outnumber her is to use the song. Since Tia can no longer sing, she is amassing an army that can. At the end of the episode, we see Tia setting off an explosion in the underwater echo chamber that healed Ben and Maddie from the effects of Ryn’s song.
The implications of this are massive. And worrying. If Tia were to attack Bristol Cove, there will be no going back there for any remedy or recording. Ben and Maddie did take a recording back to the military in Season 2. However, there’s no guarantee that it still exists or hasn’t been damaged or misplaced. This also has implications for Ben who started listening to Ryn’s song again in Season 2 Episode 14. Neither Ryn or Maddie is aware that he did this and no one knows what will happen if he hears a different song.
I really hope that the writers address Ben listening to the song again. Given his recent behaviour, I’m starting to think that maybe the song even influenced his decision to let Ian die. He’s been changing, and not in a good way. Now that he’s upping his injection dosage, who knows what other side effects he’ll begin to experience too.
What did you think of Siren Season 3 Episode 7? Share your thoughts in the comments below.