The story is at an exciting boil, so we get right to it. Salcedo is able to work her way into Highclare per Lagunas’ tipoff. Some major reveal must happen at the conclave of billionaires assembled. Can she keep up the ruse to learn key information? Also, Paco & Elena are in the presence of Lombardi who is far too eager to see the book they obtain. They haven’t gotten this far because they dropped a sense of caution, and they haven’t given up on it just yet. That’s a wise move considering we know that Barbrow is providing the words/action of the fake Lombardi.
But to our surprise, the fake Lombardi proves to be of little threat. Here, we thought it would take the whole episode for Paco & Elena to thwart the imposter and it happens before the title credits play. It paid off for them to be cautious and it didn’t hurt that Barbrow passed off the duties to a subordinate because he was late for the Highclare gathering. So, the goal of the episode is to find out what is crucial about Highclare, to find the real Lombardi, and to learn the importance of the book. This writer is eager to find all that out. Besides the benefit of the ‘arcane symbol,’ the good guys really need some sacred support and or divine intervention to be able to beat their foes. Plus, it is interesting to see Salcedo (played by Nuria González) really take some forefront action this season.
Salcedo smoothly makes it past security but the snag in her plan, unbeknownst to her at first, is that Merche is in the crowd having arrived on Barbrow’s arm. While all attention is on Barbrow’s pitch to reset the world with only the Highclare assemblage to move on, Merche’s eye is on the spy in the room. As Salcedo tries to leave the grounds with what she’s learned Merche stops her. She stops her not to call her out to see her killed but to get word to Paco that he is in grave danger. Uh, I think he already knows that.
We see him next finally meeting the real Lombardi. He and Elena have the clergyman explain the book to them. It is one of a few grimoires, or books of spells. We know Barbrow has one, and our couple now learn they have one also, but no clue how to use it. Can they evoke a spell, let alone the right one? The worry is that those with the power of the 30 COINS can evoke the spells within to lay waste to the world as we know it. It is all falling into place. The trick for the Good is to find the counter spell. Let’s just say all that is easier said than done as once again things seem to turn for the worse.
I won’t spoil all that transpires but it causes a need for reinforcements on Earth. Thus, Padre Vergara is permitted to return to the surface with Santoro in tow. It seems Barbrow might have had the upper hand but not now. A little side note here, remember the teaser for the second season showing a garish Vergara? Well, that wasn’t just for publicity’s sake. When Vergara returns to the living, he is a bit on the gruesome side. There is a well-placed comedic moment as the two adjust to their return. All unexpected but interesting. Another unexpected moment was Laguna and most of the Pedraza residents escaping the hospital/lab. Yet another surprise occurs when Paco & Elena are separated. Merche uses her Coin to draw Paco to her. That leaves Elena alone with the book and Paco on Barbrow’s yacht.
I think I have an idea of how all this will end, but I can’t second guess how De la Iglesia will get us there. I believe only Vergara will be able to read the counter spell from the book as, what the hell, he’s already dead. The Good Guys are gaining ground, and they have until the Spring Equinox to defeat Evil. How does it all pull off? Two more episodes left!