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'The Strain' recap: 'By Any Means'

Fet and Dutch go strigoi hunting while a blast from the past gives Abraham some hope.

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Michael Gibson/FX

The Strain

TV Show
Current Status:
In Season
David Bradley, Corey Stoll, Mia Maestro
Drama, Horror, Thriller

The Strain spared us any vomit-inducing worm barfing scenes in “By Any Means,” instead it indulged its more disgusting tendencies with a few severed strigoi heads flying through the air. The episode is much more concerned with the continued searches of its leads: Nora and Ephraim’s hunt for a cure, Abraham’s search for the fabled Occido Lumen, and Fet and Dutch’s exploration of neighboring buildings for strigoi nests (and a hidden place to shack up together).

Yes, The Strain is keeping its core team at various edges of the show’s universe, unfortunately denying us the joy of seeing their combined camaraderie while largely providing more table setting for the main arcs.

Eph and Nora are hard at work treating the infected couple from the storage lockers and using them as subjects in their hunt for some way to stop the spread of infection. At first, the husband and wife are left out in the cold, unaware of how exactly the transformation will progress. Once Eph decides to tell them, however, it takes some excessive guilt tripping to convince them to stay, as Eph suggests the fate of mankind could rest on their shoulders. No pressure.

So they remain in isolation, Eph and Nora continuing to experiment on them, Nora continuing to be frustrated, and Eph continuing to drink and become less likable by the minute. The two former-CDC employees appear at an impasse, but when Nora realizes the lab has some pure DNA strains, they begin to attempt a synthesization process that may lead them toward some transformation-halting solution.

And it appears they may be onto something, as the results of their efforts show vampire brains being munched on by their solution. Will it work on a larger scale? Who knows, but it’s a hell of a start.

Fet and Dutch have more immediate success in their endeavors, as the two venture out from the safehouse for a little strigoi hunting. And really, if the show turned into the Fet and Dutch (“Futch?” “Det?” “Fetch?” I’m not sure I love any of their couple names.) hour, that wouldn’t be such a bad thing. The two most charismatic and, frankly, enjoyable to watch members of the team begin hunting down strigoi in the neighborhood, hoping to clear one structure after the next and build out a safe perimeter. (There is some flawed logic there. Sure, they can clear out building after building, but the real world doesn’t operate like a video game, and strigoi could very much move back into the area.)

They start with a fitness center, where the strangest aspect of it isn’t the nests of sleeping strigoi in the showers. It’s the odd midi or jazzy instrumental version of the Bee Gees’ “How Deep Is Your Love” playing in the building.

The answer to that song’s title though is quite deep, as the two risk their lives for each other to clear out the nest. Dutch creates a distraction, drawing strigoi toward her while Fet blasts off a few sunlight grenades. The two then commence a lesson in head severing 101, sweeping the vampire-infected craniums clean off their necks.

NEXT: Abraham may have a new lead in his hunt for the Occido Lumen.