Hop on board for Bloodride’s fourth episode, Lab Rats. Once again we start things off on a stormy night as our silent host, the ‘Bus Driver’, adjusts his rearview mirror. As we pan along the rows of hopeless passengers, the camera lingers of five people dressed only their undergarments. Admittedly, I’ve been most curious about these passengers and, finally, Bloodride will tell us their story.
Lab Rats Invites You to Dinner
Atop a metropolitan tower, pharmaceutical giant Edmund Brathen gathers his wife and team for a celebration. They’ve developed an industry-changing prototype, and Edmund is in good spirits. However, as the celebratory dinner gets underway, tensions among the group reveal themselves. Edmund’s longtime collaborator, Philip harbours some professional jealousy over colleague Abdi’s breakthrough contributions. And Edmund’s wife, Iselin, suspects her husband has gotten cozy with young assistant, Oda.
In a cruel twist of irony, Edmund informs them that the combination to get out is the same as his personal safe.
But the festivities come to an abrupt halt when Edmund discovers the prototype is missing from his personal safe. When his personal security guard informs him that no one else has come or gone from the building, Edmund believes one of his guests is the thief. Desperate to retrieve the prototype, Edmund has his security officer search and strip his guest, including his wife. Too bad the search comes up empty. Edmund and his security officer lead his wife and guests at gunpoint to his research lab. Once inside the lab, Edmund locks his guest inside a glass chamber. In a cruel twist of irony, Edmund informs them that the combination to get out is the same as his personal safe. In other words, only the thief can open the door.
Still Just a Rat in a Cage
Trapped together and watched by an increasingly paranoid Edmund, simmering tensions amongst the group boil over. Jealous Philip quickly points a finger at Abdi. As the two bicker over whose contribution was the true breakthrough, Philip snaps and beats Abdi unconscious. Meanwhile, Iselin and Oda take turns pointing fingers at each other. No one will admit to stealing the prototype. With no other options, Edmund leaks a poisonous gas into the chamber. Finally, Oda gives herself up when she frantically enters the combination and frees the guests.
At this point, it’s fair enough to say that Bloodride isn’t Black Mirror.
Years ago, Oda’s father worked for Edmund. But after Edmund conned his employees out of their investments, Oda’s father committed suicide. Out for revenge, Oda planned to steal and sell the prototype to Edmund’s rival. Though Edmund gets his prototype back, Iselin turns the tables, forcing Edmund into the same glass chamber at gunpoint. In a cruel twist of fate, Iselin tells her husband that she’s changed the combination – to her birthday. Unfortunately, the greedy and self-absorbed Edmund can’t remembers his own wife’s birthday and collapses to the chamber floor with foam brewing at his mouth.
Lab Rats Delivers a Fun, Suspenseful Whodunnit
Though Lab Rats teased cheap ‘Torture Porn’ thrill early on, the episode delivered a pleasant surprise. What Bloodride gave us instead was a bit of a whodunnit mystery that generated some of the best suspense in the series to date. No, it wasn’t a perfect episode. With only 30 minutes with which to work, Lab Rats’ mystery is pretty basic stuff. But that’s probably not a bad thing considering the occasionally heavy-handed plotting on display. Nonetheless, there was just enough guessing and tightly paced tension to make this an enjoyable episode. At this point, it’s fair enough to say that Bloodride isn’t Black Mirror. Still, the Norwegian anthology series is delivering consistently good episodes thus far.