Motherland: Fort Salem Season 1 Episode 10 Review: Witchbomb


It’s a good thing that Motherland: Fort Salem got unofficially renewed for a second season.

Otherwise, Motherland: Fort Salem Season 1 Episode 10 would have been the mother of all cliffhangers, as nearly no storyline got resolved.

About the only storyline that got somewhat tied up was that General Alder is generally one of the good guys.

She’s just complicated, taking questionable actions for the right reasons.

Alder did that all through this episode.

She wanted to save the Tarim and keep them and their spells from being wiped out.

Granted, her motives weren’t entirely humanitarian, as she wanted those spells for her Army to protect witches from the threats facing them.

But with all that Alder has had to endure through the centuries, of course, she’s had to become more morally flexible than a bright-eyed idealist such as Tally could understand.

As she revealed in the brutal showdown with the Camarilla, Alder will do what she has to to minimize her casualties.

Alder wasn’t just protecting her position of power. She was safeguarding her witches as well.

So, if nothing else, some cracks appeared in Alder’s facade during this finale, casting her as a more sympathetic character.

Other than on the Alder front, there were a lot of head-scratching developments.

Since the series is renewed, that’s OK, as these can play out over Motherland: Fort Salem Season 2, whenever that finally airs.

Otherwise, Freeform would have had to have dealt with hundreds of thousands of pissed-off viewers.

First, the Spree weren’t the big bad they were thought to be this whole season.

Make that the only big bad. Any group that was causing mass suicide can’t be seen in a positive light.

However, the Camarilla, only introduced on Motherland: Fort Salem Season 1 Episode 9, are the enemy of both Alder’s forces and the Spree.

I can’t wait to hear how a people wiped out by Alder had gotten resurrected.

As best I can cobble together, the Camarilla are humans who have mutilated witches to create magical voiceboxes they used as weapons against witches. 

At least Tally’s scrying identified those watching Alder’s forces as not being witches.

The Camarilla held their own against Alder’s soldiers. It helped that they had a big numerical advantage and the element of surprise.

It will be intriguing to see how Alder’s witches, the Spree, and the Camarilla line up against each other next season.

It appeared that Abigail, Tally, and Raelle was destined to become “war meat.”

Insecure Glory’s unit gets into War College but not those three? Huh?

They were among the most powerful witches among the cadets. (Granted, only five cadets were ever identified, a damn small sampling.) So how else could they not be chosen for War College?

The only thing that makes sense was that the mission to rescue the Tarim was top secret so the trio had to be listed as deployed. That way, no one asks questions when they disappear.

Of course, Petra did what the rich and powerful have also done. She pulled strings to get Abigail into War College.

Did anyone believe that the now more empathetic Abigail was going to blow off her unit mates? How could they? They were disillusioned already and susceptible to negative thoughts, I guess.

So it was no surprise when she joined them, and Adil, on the flight.

After seeing the kind of magic the Tarim had at their disposal, you had to wonder how the Camarilla, or anyone, could get the drop on them. They were rearranging mountains, for crying out loud.

Even magical pacifists should be allowed to defend themselves against attack, right?

Whatever that black goo was certainly had an impact on their numbers as well. If little Khalida was one of their most powerful witches, does that mean the other children attacked by the goo are equally powerful?

At one point, it appeared that creator Eliot Lawrence was just going to kill off the Bellweather Unit and start over with fresh recruits if the renewal was announced.

But then things got wacky.

After two of Alder’s Biddies got killed, Tally offered up her life force to save Alder, who she had been savagely berating just hours before.

Didn’t Tally age well?

Then Raelle gave up her war charm to that scared Tarim kid only to get run through with a sword. Abigail tried to resurrect Raelle (how I’m still not sure). Alder made a commander’s call and left them both to die.

Only that black goo Raelle had been removed swirled around them, and before long, they’re walking hand in hand, a cloud of the goo following them like with Pigpen in the old Peanuts cartoons.

Was that reality or some afterlife? Who knows?

What was up with Anacostia and Scylla?

Did they bond, leading to Scylla being freed? Or was Anacostia just playing her to track her back to the Spree headquarters?

Better yet, Raelle’s mom was alive and is the leader of the Spree? That came out of nowhere.

All told, this exciting finale was one big WTF moment.

How did you like the finale?

What did you like best about the season?

Are you glad the series got renewed?

Comment below.

watch Motherland: Fort Salem online

Dale McGarrigle is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.

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