Episode 7 of Locke and Key Season 3 begins at Matheson Academy back in 1995. We’re in flashback territory and Rendell uses a brand new key we haven’t seen before. Alongside a young Jeff, the pair manage to conjure forth a creature courtesy of using a key that can magic up whatever one draws.
Gordie is there too and he ends up injured as a result of this creature attacking him. Rendell shrugs it off, claiming Gordie will be fine. He wants to use the key to make a bigger production, but a young Ellie is not so sure that’s a good idea.
Fast forward to the present and Gideon drives with Ellie, encouraging her to floor it so he can experience the thrill of driving fast. With his eyes watering, Ellie suddenly slams on the brakes and decides to make a run for it through the woods. Of course, Gideon catches up in true villain fashion and knocks her out.
Back in Locke house, Nina listens to Sam apologize and refuses to forgive him for what he’s done. However, he wants to atone for his sins and part of that comes from the group banding together and working to stop Gideon, no matter what. So for now, those animosities are put on hold so they can thwart Gideon.
Naturally, Gideon and Ellie make it to Gordie’s place, as further flashbacks show Rendell busting into Gordie’s memories and taking those relating to the little sprite that attacked him. This explains why he doesn’t remember what happened with the key and everything else connected to him.
In the present, Gideon stabs Gordie and uses the Memory Key, breaking into his psyche to get the key back before it’s too late.
Meanwhile, Bode and Nina try a number of ways to break into the halequin chest even though Bode was explicitly told no one can break in without the key. He even tells the others this too earlier in the season, hence why the keys were chosen to be kept inside. Big brain moment there from Bode.
Anyway, while these two conduct their pointless busywork, a visual treat ensues as we explore Gordie’s memories to find the final key. Back in Gordie’s office, Rufus shows up and notices the guy bleeding out, hurriedly ringing an ambulance. The thing is, with Gordie dying there’s a possibility that the key could be lost forever inside. Thankfully, the group find the key nestled in a piano on stage and prepare to break out.
While Sam fights off Gideon inside Gordie’s head, he dumps the grand piano on him and walks off. However, Gordie is fading and we see the curtains whence they entered his mind blinker out of existence. Is he dead? Is everything lost? We’ll have to wait to find out!
The Episode Review
It’s taken 7 episodes and we finally see some of the visual flair and imagination that made the first season so endearing. Ironically, it comes with a completely different writer this episode in Carlton Cuse and Joe Hill.
This imaginative flair is something lost with the previous season and we finally see it here in a nice exploration of Gordie’s memory. The whole sequence feels quite reminiscent of Persona 5 and for those Phantom Thieves familiar with the PS4 game, I salute you!
These visuals work well in the context of the mission, but it also feels very last-minute as busywork to delay Gideon. The fact that there’s one last key and we’ve only just heard about this now, with no prior knowledge or foreshadowing, does seem like a bit of lazy writing.
Speaking of lazy, the show itself is riddled with stupid character choices and it’s one of the biggest pet peeves with this season. The show as a whole has always had echoes of this but season 3 in particular has been awful for characters just acting idiotically. Why is Bode trying to break into a chest he cannot open when he knows it’s impossible? The whole sequence with Nina just feels like a complete waste of time. They could have at least tried to pick the lock, which may have been a little more believable!
While Gordie is taken to hospital and his life fades, everything is left hanging in the balance for the final episode. Will the Locke’s come out of this on top?