REVIEW: Motherland: Fort Salem – 2.05: “Brianna’s Favorite Pencil”


“I just wanted answers.”

If you’re like me and love a good spooky episode from your favorite tv series (especially if said show is supernatural based), then this episode of Motherland: Fort Salem is for you! Centered around All Hallow’s Eve/War College traditions, “Brianna’s Favorite Pencil” does a great job at both providing a special holiday themed episode while also continuing the ongoing story-lines.

“And tonight, we wake the dead”: As mentioned above, this episode provides us with a eerie War College tradition that allows the units to wake the dead. The catch? They have to protect the burning fire from the unwanted spirits until midnight passes. It’s easier said then done, when you have various ghostly arrows being thrown at you from all angles. For me, it was so interesting watching this part of the episode, because obviously Motherland: Fort Salem is centered around witches, but I never considered it to be in the realm of the supernatural/paranormal? But it makes perfect sense and I would love to see more elements of this in the show.

“You’re not weak. There are things worth dying for and things worth living for”: Once succeeded, each member of the group gets to speak with a member of the dead for a brief amount of time. The choices each member makes are fairly obvious to the audience. For Tally, it’s a member of the martyrdom to gain more insight on Alder’s past. Abigail’s spirit is Charval and for Raelle it’s her mother. Unfortunately, with the audience knowing very well that Willa Collar is alive, we’re left with a heartbroken Raelle at the end of the episode. We know Willa’s alive and the pair will eventually get a (hopefully) happy reunion, but seeing a distraught Raelle as the candle burned out, was so hard to watch.


“Why didn’t she come? Why didn’t she want to talk to me?”

“Find something to live for…otherwise hate is going to eat you whole”: On the other side of the witch front (both for and against), Scylla and Anacostia attend a Camarilla Hallow’s Eve party undercover to gain even more insight into the goings-on of the group. What may look like a fancy get-together meeting, is just dripping with hate underneath the surface. Their tradition is of course sacrificing a witch. That being Brianna’s friend, Tiffany, from previous episodes.

From a show standpoint, I’m always impressed with the way Motherland: Fort Salem pushes the writing just a little over the edge, but from a viewer perspective (and decent human being), just the idea of Tiffany being sacrificed irked me. But when you have a duo like Anacostia and Scylla attending the event, you know justice will be served. In their case, that’s saving Tiffany and putting a stop to the party.

The last scene of the episode was chilling. I’ve noticed in these past few episodes, the title of the episode gets mentioned in a very “blink and you’ll miss it” way. But it’s incredibly impactful. For this episode, “Brianna’s Favorite Pencil” is the weapon Scylla as Bonnie uses to kill Shane. Did I see this coming? Absolutely. We’ve seen how Bonnie interacts with people, especially her husband. It’s very skittish; this was different. Scylla knew what she wanted to do. The line Scylla mentions to Bonnie as she’s exiting the house was a harrowing thing to say. Don’t follow hate and do what makes you happy. I really hope we see Bonnie soon and that maybe she joins the Spree/witches side in the end?

What were your thoughts on this week’s Motherland: Fort Salem episode?

The next new episode of Motherland: Fort Salem, 2.06: “My 3 Dads” airs Tuesday at 10/9c on Freeform.

The trailer as well as this week’s “After the Storm” can be viewed below.