We’re now more than halfway through Locke & Key’s final season, and most shows like this tend to put their characters in a trap around this point. It’s time for the “We’re all screwed” episode, with just three episodes for our heroes to prove everyone wrong and save the day. That sort of happens in “Siege,” but while the Lockes aren’t in a great place, there’s been a wrinkle in Gideon and Dodge’s evil plan for world domination. It appears Dodge and Gideon might not be allies after all. Instead, Dodge is a sort of demonic freelancer, someone who has tried to destroy the Lockes before but thinks Gideon is going too far in his pursuit of entire world domination. After all, Dodge likes this meat world. How sweet.
“Siege” opens by repeating the last episode’s closing scene, with Nina finding Dodge’s “corpse” under her son’s bed. Eek. While she looks a little suspicious, she doesn’t immediately figure out that Bode has been possessed by Dodge. The little tyke explains that Dodge came back when he used the Timeshift Key and tells a little lie that her body was limp like that from the minute she arrived. Maybe because she is not supposed to exist in this time? Mom looks like she’s going along with Dodge’s lies, but not for long.
Meanwhile, Tyler now remembers everything — just in time, of course — because Kinsey used the Memory Key on him. He is reminded that Mom used it too and immediately thrust into a problem involving magic, keys, and a demon corpse under a bed. While they’re trying to figure out what’s going on with Bode, Ellie is facing a similar problem with Rufus, who first insists that silence is the only option but eventually reveals that the kid who called Bode over there in Keyhouse is not being controlled by his BFF anymore.
The three Locke musketeers decide to call Duncan to figure out what’s up with the Timeshift Key while they feel out exactly what’s going on with Bode and Dodge. Gideon is pressuring Dodge to deliver the keys, and it seems as if this episode is spinning its wheels here a bit after the momentum of the last chapter. It also feels just a little low stakes, right? Maybe it’s because Gabe/Dodge felt like more of a danger than Gideon and his cronies? Even with Dodge back, this season lacks some of the suspense of the last two.
Well, unless you’re a Nintendo fan who has a panic attack when they see Dodge literally break a Switch in half. The other Lockes are chatting when Dodge comes in and says that he got so mad at himself he threw the gaming device at the wall. (With enough strength to break it in half? Dodge is bad at understanding kid strength.) While they all try to figure out what happens when the hourglass in the magic clock runs out, Dodge is trying to get her hands on the Mending Key to fix the Switch. Let’s go to the chest, Kinsey! She senses something isn’t right because Dodge is barely trying to be a real kid anymore and tries to buy some time. Not long after, she starts to figure out that Dodge’s body means that Bode’s ghost is floating around the graveyard.
The big reveal happens because of the unlucky coincidence of Nina putting her phone on a table where she can’t see it but where Dodge/Bode can. When Ellie calls to warn the Lockes about Dodge, the demon gets to kill the call and gets increasingly impatient about not being given the Mending Key. (Dodge really doesn’t have the patience for playing the long game in a kid’s body.) She pulls a knife on Mom! A big one! Boom — Tyler suddenly has the magic chain on Dodge. She makes her case that they need her! Gideon is trying to merge the demon world and the human one. Dodge doesn’t want that. She’s trying to stop him! Could Dodge actually work with the Lockes to save the world? After all, an enemy of my enemy is a friend, right?
They try to fix everything through the ghost door, but it’s overrun by plants — remember when Gideon got his hands on that Plant Key? How convenient. They’ve closed off all exits but the front door, through which Gideon and his echoes march. While Ellie/Rufus are on their way there, the men search the house with orders to kill Dodge/Bode — so there’s at least some truth to the idea that these two aren’t working together. They’re searching the house when they find Dodge’s body, but everyone else is hiding.
Not for long. Kinsey and Coffey fight first, and Bolton gets his hands on a key in another part of the house and gives it to his boss. That’s the plan — Gideon can’t take the keys, but his soldiers can. As the fight intensifies, a winged Dodge/Bode comes in and grabs Coffey off the ground, flying to the wheelhouse and throwing him over it, causing him to burst into flames. One down. Dodge insists that she can stop Gideon with the Alpha Key. Has she proven she is on the side of the Lockes? Kinsey thinks so and hands Dodge the most powerful key in the box. As Dodge flaps her wings outside the house, a shot rings out. Bode’s body has taken a shot to his shoulder, which causes panic among the Lockes. None of this is worth it if there’s no body for Bode to reenter. Tyler tries to bargain — they will give Gideon all the keys if they can save Bode’s body.
In the final scenes, Uncle Dunc calls back to say that the hourglass is a fail-safe; anything brought back through the Timeshift Key that shouldn’t be there will go poof when the sand runs out. What if Dodge is still in Bode’s body when that happens? We get an answer pretty quickly. While Gideon and Bolton are collecting the remaining keys, Dodge/Bode straight up disappear moments before she could attack Gideon. The season’s big bad squeezes what he found in the Harlequin Chest and the blue portal opens in the ground. “The end of the world is upon us,” he growls.
• This is another episode that benefited from the tighter run times of the final season, coming under 40 minutes! That’s shorter than a network-TV drama! Netflix almost always has the opposite problem — stretching out its dramas to an hour or more — so it’s really nice to see quality valued over quantity.
• Do you trust Dodge? While it seems true that she doesn’t want the entire world destroyed, doesn’t it feel like she will try to find a way to stay in power herself, too? She won’t be willing to just disappear back into the history in which she was defeated, of course.
• Only three left! It feels like there’s a lot to do in those three episodes. Let’s see how they pull it off.