Kung Fu – Season 1 Episode 4 Recap & Review

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Episode 4 of Kung Fu begins with Zhilan continuing her search for the mythical weapons. While she does, Nicky teams up with Henry to do more research and figure out what the key opens. Well, it seems like the clue may be linked with an old fairy tale that’s not actually a fable after all. Within this, the story depicts an ancient box.

However, said box happens to be belong to a collector called Tom Travers. He lives alone and even has the box out on display in his living room.

Brad continues his research and comes across old photos of Henry. It seems he has a long criminal record, which explains Henry’s quick plan to break into Tom’s house that evening.

As day turns to night, Nicky and Henry manage to break into the house and begin searching around for clues. Henry knows his history, and comments how some of the artifacts there don’t belong in this house. However, they’re both blindsided by an assassin working for Zhilan. She’s been following the same leads they have, and quickly takes off with the box.

Outside, Brad phones Nicky and warns her about Henry, revealing that he’s got a history of stealing. He also confirms a number of felons involved with breaking and entering. Henry is smart though, and he trades up an artifact for crucial intel to help them going forward. Specifically, just who has taken the box.

Henry and Nicky are held up at gunpoint on their way to Razor’s house – Randall’s contact. When they show up inside, they find the man in possession of the box. It has been sold though but Nicky decides to fight for it. She shows the key and confirms he can have it if he bests her.

Nicky wins the fight of course, and eventually opens the box with the key. Thankfully it’s a perfect fit (although it would be funny if it wasn’t) and inside happens to be a scabbard. She assembles the different pieces and realizes it’s for a sword.

Meanwhile, dinner for Althea and Dennis’ family goes awry. While they all sit down to eat, Dennis’ father admits that he wants Althea to sign a prenuptial agreement. He wants his funds to remain secure.

To make matters worse, Althea receives a text from the reporter, confirming that the contact looking to expose Althea’s abusive boss has dropped out.

Both of these issues cause Althea to snap, angry at her in-laws that they’re putting a bridal price on her. Tellingly, she removes the necklace they gave her and lays it out on the table. After some scathing words, she takes off. Dennis follows after her though and embraces his bride-to-be.

Henry drives Nicky home after their adventure, exchanging a cheeky kiss before they part ways. When Nicky does head inside, she sits with Althea and learns about the abuse she suffered in the past. For all the flaws of this show, this scene is beautifully done and really hits hard.

As the episode closes out, Zhilan receives her box and key in the mail. The only trouble is, Nicky has already taken off with the scabbard parts.

The Episode Review

Kung Fu returns with another dose of melodrama, one that’s actually quite good when it comes to developing the characters. We also see what’s inside the box too, which happens to be a connect-the-pieces scabbard.

The kung fu and fighting elements are really secondary in this show though (which is ironic given the name of this series.) Ultimately though, it’s the soapy melodrama that’s really the driving force of this show. Althea is a far more interesting character than anyone else here and understanding more about her difficult past adds a sobering element to what’s otherwise a pretty goofy show.

Everything else about Kung Fu outside of this is pure CW territory, with little in the way of kung fu fighting or spirituality. For the Althea storyline alone though, this one is worth sticking with, but everything else fails to really stand out.

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