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The Strain - S3E9 - Do or Die

Previously on The Strain, “White Light”

The Strain - S3E9 - “Do or Die” | Starring: David Bradley, Kevin Durand, Corey Stoll,Richard Sammell, Jack Kesy, Miguel GomezRuta Gedmintas, Jonathan Hyde, Natalie Brown,Rupert Penry-Jones

If You Can Make It There

When I saw this week’s episode title, I was hoping we’d be spending some time in Bed Stuy, but not only didn’t we get to visit this area of Brooklyn, it turns out almost everyone is getting the hell up outta New York altogether.

Justine Faraldo tries to rally the troops she has left, but morale is damn near nonexistent. No one has the desire to maintain the small strongholds they have left, especially with supplies waning. Justine’s desire to remain and protect the city would make a lot more sense if there was something to protect. At the rate they’re going, there are more strigoi left in the city than actual humans. In the end, she’s only left with five officers, including Kowolski.

By the time Faraldo realizes they should leave as well, it’s nighttime because of course it is. Their convoy out of town is attacked by strigoi. Gus and Angel see this on their way out of town, and Angel wants to help. Gus ain’t bout dat life, but Angel is driving so…

Images: FX

Gus and Angel free Faraldo and Kowolski, and tell them they just need to make it a few feet across a bridge since strigoi can’t travel over moving water. Of course, not all of them make it.

Angel is stung and forces Gus to go ahead without him while he holds off advancing strigoi. Kowolski is also stung and Faraldo gets another worm in her eye. Before the strigoi can finish them off, a leaking fuel tank ignites and kills them all.

Gus watches helplessly.

Now, Now, Boys; You’re Both Pretty

Despite being two alpha males, Fet and Eph haven’t really clashed in three seasons. This all changes after Fet stops by his own apartment to tell Eph and Dutch that the police are pulling out of the city and they probably should, too. They refuse as they’re close to finishing their Microwave Ultra-Neuro Communication Halting Equipment Rays, or MUNCHERs for short.

After Eph and Dutch test the device on a few strigoi and discover it works, they take the good news to Fet and Abraham. Without Quinlan, it’s their only chance to draw the Master into the silver and lead box Abraham has prepared for him. Did we know Abraham was working on this?

Fet is down, but he doesn’t want to work with Eph, citing Eph’s ain’t-shit ways. Eph counters that Fet isn’t much better and throws all the people who died in Central Park in Fet’s face. Then Fet throws his fist in Eph’s face.

The fight is broken up by Abraham, who has to tell both boys they’re pretty and that they don’t have time for this shit. Quinlan arrives and agrees. And since no one in that room can beat Quinlan’s ass, the case is closed.

How Palmer Got His Groove Back

We’ve noted many things about Eldridge Palmer over the course of three seasons. He’s petty, stubborn, doesn’t know how to be the lesser in any situation, and he thinks his money alone should demand respect and doesn’t bother trying to earn it. This week, we get some insight into how he came to be that way.

He spent his entire life trying to earn the love and respect of a father who wouldn’t publicly acknowledge him. At his worst, Palmer’s father, Mr. O’Neill, gives his son a check for $10,000 with the instructions never to reach out to him again.

If The White has been sustaining Palmer for the past season and a half, his anger towards his father was all that fueled him before that. Palmer visits his elderly father in a nursing home to show him that he turned that ten thousand into millions and he’s acquired his father’s company. Palmer returns the money only to see the check ripped to shreds in his face. His father isn’t impressed, and shuns him once again. He points out that Palmer spent his entire life trying to get back at him, while he wasn’t thinking about Palmer at all. He predicts he’ll outlive his son and laughs in his face.

And now we know why Palmer is so obsessed with prolonging his life. It doesn’t even matter if his father is still living; Palmer gonna stay alive out of spite. I told y’all that Old White Man Petty is unrivaled. 

It’s this encounter with his father that drives him to return to Eichorst and accept his offer to be in league with The Master - except Eichorst promises Palmer not just eternal life, but equal standing with The Master.

In present day, we know that their arrangement has been anything but equal, and the latest slight was the vampires using his resources to smuggle something in the country without telling him anything about it. Palmer rectifies this by tracking down Sanjay and demanding (at gunpoint) to see what’s in the crate. It’s one of two nukes; Palmer pieces together that the explosion the night before must have been the other one. Palmer takes the nuke and heads home.

When Eichorst arrives to demand it back, he finds Palmer weak and hooked up to his machines. He refuses to disclose the location of the bomb until Eichorst tells him what the Master needs it for and lives up to his part of the deal. Eichorst reminds Palmer he doesn’t need him to tell him anything: He’ll drain him, turn him, and give the Master access to Palmer’s memories.

Before Eichorst can make good on that promise, Palmer pulls out a shotgun and puts a hot one in Eichorst’s chest. Worms everywhere! Palmer’s security detail joins in and a wounded Eichorst falls down the elevator shaft to escape.

Leave your thoughts on the episode below or on the Facebook post for this review, and we’ll read them on tonight’s podcast!

The Strain S3E9 = 7.5/10
  • 7/10
    Plot - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Dialogue - 8/10
  • 7/10
    Action - 7/10
  • 8/10
    Performances - 8/10
User Review
5 (1 vote)
About Nina Perez (1391 Articles)
Nina Perez is the founder of Project Fandom. She is also the author of a YA series of books, "The Twin Prophecies," and a collection of essays titled, "Blog It Out, B*tch." Her latest books, a contemporary romance 6-book series titled Sharing Space, are now available on for Kindle download. She has a degree in journalism, works in social media, lives in Portland, Oregon, and loves Idris Elba. When not watching massive amounts of British television or writing, she is sketching plans to build her very own TARDIS. She watches more television than anyone you know and she's totally fine with that.

10 Comments on The Strain - S3E9 - Do or Die

    Damn, there’s only one episode left for this season? Time has flown by and it’s actually been a pretty good ride this year. I’m looking forward to seeing how they wrap this thing up.
    1. Gus – OK, so now that Angel is gone, who is gonna be Gus’s new daddy??? Hopefully it’ll be Quinlan and they can team up to wreck shop on these hoes next year. They really need to find something to do with this man. Let’s get him out of this Bokeem Woodbine, “Can’t Get Right” zone and have him be awesome in the final season.
    2. Where Is This Nigga From????? – Yo, where the fuck is that black security guard from? One week he has no accent, then the next week he has one no one has ever heard, ever. Nigga, where you from??????????????
    3. Fet And His Feelings – Man, this dude Fet was so butthurt in this episode. Sheesh! Get it together, son! You know before bed he sat there on that bottom bunk he shares with his pretend daddy, listened to Adele, wrote poetry and had a good cry. He was like “Man, FUCK Eph!!!! He took my woman… after that other woman took her first. He took my damn house. And he gets all the liquor, while I’m out with Dad doing all the damn work. I hate that bald headed bitch, and I wish he’d die!”.
    4. Palmer/Eichorst – Damn, Palmer’s daddy wasn’t SHIT!!! It’s crazy how all the shit Palmer has done in life was to prove something to him. But, that happens a lot in real life, so it wasn’t a surprise that was his motivation on the show. On another note, the way the episode ended was pretty beastly. Palmer, That Non Descript Nigga, and the rest of their crew set Eichorst up for failure! That shit was pretty gully. You know Palmer’s old ass is gonna need about 50 drops of Master Popeye’s Baby Batter squirted in his eyes to recover from all that action in those final scenes tho. His old ass hasn’t moved that fast all series long.

  2. For the podcast:
    👏This👏petty👏petty👏bitch👏. Palmer was beautiful. He’s finally using his brain. Was there only one box in the ship? Was all of that over two bomb? Ok I guess. So we’re just going to kill off everyone? The worms & stinger-bites weren’t enough? 💥💥🔥🔥💥🔥. RIP guys. I just don’t get why these people still insist on traveling at night. Yay for Quinlan😍. Now it’s on!!!

    I turned to this directly after TWD so I was still a tad shell shocked only 2 see more death.

    Feraldo/kowalski/angel, albeit stung, went down fighting & how cool (or corny depending on your POV) was the image of angel going up In flames as the champion luchero?
    So what happens to Gus? I think he re-teams w/😍uinlan aka Qdog. And Qdog is back (yay) a bit singed but no worse for wear.

    Palmers backstory was interesting-i felt sorry for him-an unwanted love child hated by his daddy-company name should be coldheart or noheart.

    Fet vs eph aka battle of the wussies was funny & I LOL when daddy Sertrakian raised cane to stop the noise. Btw does fet know/guessed that eph/Dutch are a couple?
    Speaking of, zero chemistry when they’re coupling aka shower scene but in the field it’s more natural.
    Back to Palmer-since he got that shot of the white, he’s gone gangsta! He regained control of the company, got the nuke (so that was all what was in the box?!?), and took out Eichorst in an excellent scene. I guess petty Palmer can play along to suit his purpose. As for Eichorst, down but not out.

    Good episode-looking forward to the finale

  4. For the Podcast!

    Damn! I thought this episode was going to get swept away in the craze of The Walking Dead, but they brought their A game! [Which it turns out is just locking New Zach in a cupboard like Enid and shutting Kelly’s shit down like Negan!]

    1) Rip Bridge Trio, and unnamables . Geraldine just loves getting white and worms in her eye. God forbid they kill off a female character without her getting infected first though. Still, it was pretty badass. Not silver-on-rail Pantene commercial badass tho. Geraldine just sat by and let it happen - kinda like with the strigoi taking over.
    2) Yep, Angel became a luchador at the end. I ain’t even mad. They had to kill off the two characters that didn’t have a parental connection, and Kowalski for being a diehard follower. That was epic!
    3) I get why Palmer was trying to help Geraldine when he was still rolling with the master. He was just trying to make it a fair fight, otherwise Geraldine just ruins it by herself!
    4) Gus just went from worst character to my own personal spirit New-Yorker. What a great reaction.
    5) Damn! Eph packs a punch! Felt must’ve been in the way of his alcohol or something!
    6) Are we really down to one female character tho? I mean, they can only write for one at a time, so it’s not too bad. Did it have to be “Trousers” Dutch tho?
    7) Palmer. King Petty Palmer. I know what you’re going to say - Palmer could have killed Eichorst outright. BUT 👏THIS 👏IS 👏KING 👏PETTY 👏THO👏🙌🙌🙌 Eichorst’s face when he saw the shotgun was hilarious! Then when the Petty Patrol came out of the shadows and Palmer channeled his White Privilege version of Omar!👌👌Eichorst got the fuck outta dodge! He got (elevator) shafted! Palmer “Grima Wyrmtongue”d his ass! (Actually, that sounds kinda dirty considering we all know Eichorst loves eating the booty like groceries.)
    8) Ladies, do you prefer your Quinn-dog hot, or silver-charred? He came back at the right moment to claim Dutch for his own!
    9) Last one, what happened to Palmer’s Goon’s accent? Am I missing something?

    Looking forward to next week, especially with Sarah’s roundups. Part of me wants it to be a musical just so I can see Palmer and his Petty Patrol snapping their fingers in sync as they walk through the streets of New York to have a gang war with the Master. This show IS crazy enough to go there

  5. For the Podcast:

    Didn’t that mayor lady already get a worm in her eye a couple episodes ago?

    I was sorry to see Justine Feraldo get yet another worm in her eye, but she died like a warrior. My eyes got misty when the flames surrounded Angel and he went out as a proud wrestler. RIP lucha libre Angel de Plata. Happy Gus got away and can he please reunite with Q for some badassery?

    Eldritch Palmer pretending to be feeble with that fake I.V. and that blanket was so good. When he started blasting Eichorst and his team flanked him it was fire! What was in that single dose of white crack?

    Palmer’s backstory was sad, sad, sad. The illegitimate son spurned by a father with a stone heart. Could Palmer and Eichorst be such good frenemies because they suffered career and personal failures? Will Palmer give the nuke to Setrakian?

    These episodes without Zack and Kelly are lovely. This is the penultimate episode, right? Shoot. I am so sad that it is almost over. It’s cheesy but I love it.


    Sup fam, 👋🏾 Sarah!! This episode was super meh to me!! I was bored the first 40 mins but the end was cool!! I was also 💩y bc someone spoiled me who shall remain nameless ( cough NinNina Pérezugh) !!!! Lets get into my highlights!!

    Lets start with Geraldine and her crew!! I loved how everyone threw up the ✌🏾️s to her dumbass when she asked them to stay!! I bet them officers 👮 safe as fuck drinking refreshing beverages with Regina King 👑 in miracle Texas!!! Also I’m surprised they didn’t have a sexual situations warning this week bc damn Geraldine loves taking dat whyte in the face!!! At this point she Midas 🐳 get a ✅ like the other adult actresses do!!

    Speaking of sexual situations, ugh 😑 why did Eph and Dutch have to have 🚿 sex!!! That is the worst thing on this fucking planet 🌎 right next to table sex ugh!!!

    I was low 🔑 angry when the luchador took one in the ankle, bc I wanted him opened like a caprisun last week!! (Still need one btw) But then when he got blown up and Gus saw him as A luchador I was like that’s cool!!

    Lastly is Palmer!! His daddy was so right!! I was wondering who was who’s daddy in that nursing 🏡 scene!!! I’m like this nigga look damn near dead 💀!! But his revenge was amazing bc he turned Eichorst into Ricky from Boyz in the hood and I loved it!!! I was like damn and he just got into USC too!!

    That’s all I got can’t wait to hear the podcast!! Oh and apparently Nina is related to Palmers pops bc he don’t answer texts neither!! ✌🏾️ guys!! 👋🏾 Sarah!!!

  8. If only Fett had been on the bridge to save Geraldine from the eye worm again. I’m glad Gus got away. Perhaps he can do something useful next week? This show really knows how to kill a crowd of named characters.

    Overall really enjoyed the episode and glad I decided to jump into the show.

    Enjoyed the Palmer flashbacks.

    And sorry to see Geraldine go! And Angel looking like he was in a bad Motley Crue video.

    Fet over reaction to Eph was so stupid and I was actually yelling at my TV for Eph to get his ass up and woke up my dog.

    Ok that’s all and I hope this feedback is for the right episode….I rewatched 7-9 because after listening to the podcast i realize I slept through epi 7. Sorry my naps are my favorite thing right now.

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