Van Helsing: Help Out – Guilt (Recap/Review)

 Van Helsing - Season 1

The strain of being trapped in The Farm is beginning to take its toll on Van Helsing and the others. “Help Out” manages to cut the survivors down by two and Mohamad meets a girl in the woods outside the bunker.

It is the morning after the night before and John’s body is on the floor with blood surrounding its head.  Van Helsing begins cleaning the blood up and as she gets the corpse ready to be moved a hungover Axel and Flesh arrive to help out.

Flesh is troubled by Axel’s “disrespect” for the dead and later thanks the Marine for his help in “getting them this far.” The two men then discover a number of putrefied bodies in one of the kitchen freezers.

Vanessa and Susan share a bunk and later they kiss.  Van Helsing admits to her friend that when she killed John, she wanted to kill and could not wait to do it again.

Doc does an autopsy on one of the corpses. She suddenly vomits and believes it is down to the alcohol from the night before.  She tells Axel and Gorman that the new bodies in the freezer need to be moved.

Vanessa goes to help Axel and thanks him for “having her back.” As their conversation continues, Vanessa learns that he read her personal file back at the hospital. The atmosphere between the two changes.

Van Helsing locks Axel in the quarantine area but lets him out when a vampire appears. The Marine shoots the creature before he leaves area.

Mohamad runs into a woman, Emma,  who is gathering wild mushrooms and berries for medicine.  She initially thinks that he is a feeder.  After introductions they two go to find more mushrooms.

Axel and Susan try to hunt down the vampire and they discover that the thing has healed itself. They also find a room that looks like a abattoir with blood all over the walls.

Rebecca, Darius’ sister, sets up Quaid to take the blame for her bloodhound, Sheema.  She and the doctor return the woman to a human camp to be killed. This will allow the vampire to use Sheema longer as a way to hunt down the rest of the  resistance.

Doc discovers that her nausea is down to radiation and not her hangover. Once she finds the levels are way too high for them to remain in the shelter, Doc passes out.

Axel gets concerned and all the group, except Gorman, go to check on her. He manages to wake her up and she unlocks the door to the lab. Doc tells the group that the entire place has been contaminated. She hands out iodine pills to counteract the radiation.

Vanessa now distrusts Axel and Doc explains that if they do not get out quickly enough  the radiation will kill them anyway.  Susan and Doc get into an argument and Axel notices that the only one who is not getting sick is Van Helsing.

Emma kisses Mohamad and then runs off. She runs past two of Julius’ special vampires and they ignore her. Moments later Mohamad runs past and they ignore him as well.

Rebecca’s plan works and Quaid dies, shot by Taka after Sheema backs up the vampire’s version of events.

Axel finds Doc crying and she confesses that she was not trying to save Smith when she got bitten. Doc also tells Axel that she is a coward, not a  hero and that she is a bad person.

This scene is a huge signpost for what happens moments  later when the two go looking for Gorman.

The Marine comforts her. Susan and Sam come in looking for Gorman who has gone missing. Sam finds a way out of the bunker and the survivors all head out except for Axel and Doc.

Axel heads into the quarantine area and Doc holds the door open for him. Gorman finds Axel and the two fight. As they get closer to the door, Doc panics and locks them both in.

She screams through the door and runs off leaving the Marine to die. Gorman attacks Axel and the two disappear beneath the glass in the door.

Later a bloody hand raises up and smacks against the glass.

On top of the bunker the escapees are attacked by vampires.  Vanessa becomes a one woman killing machine. Doc climbs out of the bunker and tells Van Helsing that Axel is dead.  She says that Gorman bit him.

The fortified ambulance runs out of gas and Vanessa learns that Axel lied to her about her file. Van Helsing also finds out that she was meant to be taken back to The Farm before the vampires took over.

As Susan and Vanessa talk, the bells begin ringing again and she decides they need to check them out.

This episode finally allowed us to see what has been eating Doc for so long.  Her guilt over sentencing Smith to die and her continued cowardice in the face of the vampires is overwhelming. It is not, however, enough to let her save Axel.

Mohamad’s new friend may not be all that she appears to be.  It is a bit odd that Julius’ special troops completely ignored her. Although that could be down to their mission to find Van Helsing and bring her to back to Julius.

Clearly Axel is not dead, although he might have been turned by Gorman. Either way, the tough Marine may not be quite so attached to Doc since she left him to die in the contaminated bunker.

The feeling of this episode was one of confusion and melancholy. Certainly the group was not as tight, it was as thought the death of John broke something. Radiation sickness may have caused a lot of the disharmony but some it may be down to the group dynamic changing.

Vanessa is evolving, her abilities to kill are improving exponentially as the series progresses.  It is odd that Axel  lied about the file but he may have done so to make Van Helsing feel less exposed.

It will be interesting to see how Axel gets out of the bunker. With Mohamad searching for the group; the smart money is on the young man and  his new friend releasing the Marine from the quarantined section.

Overton and Scarfe have brought a lot to their characters and Bernard, as Doc, is just killing it. Heyerdahl has managed to make Sam much more than the big silent type. David Cubitt will be missed as his character was one we loved to hate. 

Van Helsing airs Fridays on SyFy.



Guest starring  Chris Ippolito as Gorman,  Christie Burke as Emma, Jennifer Copping as Quaid  and Gwynyth Walsh as Magdalena.

Author: Mike's Film Talk

Former Actor, Former Writer, Former Journalist, USAF Veteran, Former Member Nevada Film Critics Society

6 thoughts on “Van Helsing: Help Out – Guilt (Recap/Review)”

  1. Michael, I just happened to stumble upon your site & I have to say, I LOVE your recaps & reviews. 🙂

    You absolutely convey every emotion that I’m feeling in the episode while you’re reviewing it & you’re asking ALL of the same questions that I have swirling around in my head long after the episode has ended.

    Like “Who’s the REAL killer? because let’s be honest, it certainly wasn’t poor, annoying, makes my skin crawl revolting (but most likely innocent of pinky stealing) John.”


    That fact alone is a testament to this show, because I have total ADD & when any other show is over, it’s usually “done, goodbye, see you all next week… on to the next!”.
    However, I find myself still pondering these kinds of questions long after the episode has ended, and totally into watching Z Nation (and I love Z Nation, so…).

    I really, really hope this show survives, as all of my other “go to” shows were cancelled this year (Penny Dreadful, Legends, Dominion, etc). 😦

    Van Helsing is really getting gooood… I can’t wait to see what happens next


  2. michael:

    thanks for the update and the insights–hope you’re enjoying the first season! keep watching as we’ve still got many surprises ahead in the next few episodes…


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