“Motherland: Fort Salem” Episode 307 Recap: The Return of Raelle

Hello and welcome to this recap of Motherland: Fort Salem, season three, episode seven, aptly named, “She Returns.” Like the second coming of lesbian Jesus. *wipes tear*

Previously on Motherland: Fort Salem, Scylla talked to Raelle through the mushrooms and through Willa, Tally had a vision of Raelle ending the world with a witch bomb, Alder went on a quest to find all the pieces of the First Song, the Cession Council realized it has a mole, and the Camarilla set invaded the White House and started an all-out war.

This week, our dear Raelle wakes up on a picnic blanket, surrounded by snacks and sandwiches.

Raelle is lying on a picnic blanket in bright sunlight next to a plate of fresh fruit

For a second I was afraid she was in heaven because surely heaven is full of fresh fruit and sandwiches.

Raelle stands up and finds her mother standing nearby. She’s wary, but Willa insists that it’s her. She tells her daughter that she’s healed now, and that Raelle has a choice to make. She can stay here, in the mycelia, with her mother. They can have picnics as often as they want and be safe and warm or together. Or she can go out there in the world, where things are hard and hateful. But for Raelle this isn’t as hard a choice as Willa perhaps hoped; she has too many people she loves out there in that dark, scary world. She has to find her way back to them so they can help change it for the better in any way they can.

Raelle looks sadly at her mom

“Plus the queer fans will go absolutely feral if me and Scylla don’t get reuinted before the series finale.”

Willa brings her little girl in for one last hug, and tells her that the Mother will call on her, in the end. But before she can clarify what that ominous message means, Raelle finds herself in the dark, alone.

At Marshal Manor, Thelma and Anacostia make battle plans. Anacostia really needs to find President Wade, and Thelma tells her that all the marshals are connected, so they could help. Thelma points them in the right direction but she can’t go with; they have called an emergency Council meeting and she needs to go stand up for the Bellweather unit and tell them about her secret militia.

She asks Abigail to take care of one thing before she leaves though…take care of the smell upstairs. You see, Scylla has been hoarding dead animals in a desperate attempt to contact Raelle again.

Scylla steels her face in concentration

A determined little necromancer, she.

Abigail tells her to snap out of it. “You’re part of the unit now,” she says. “And we need your help.” And Scylla is still a bit distracted and stressed right now, but I know this moment means a lot to her. At the very least, it meant a lot to me.

Thelma goes to the emergency Council meeting and tells them she formed a secret militia, and one of the members is willing to hear her out, but then all of a sudden all of them except Millie are passed out; she drugged the cookies. Since Thelma didn’t partake, she gets a bonk on the head instead.

On her way back to the Cession, Tally suddenly realizes her getaway truck is going the wrong way and she starts to panic.

Tally looks shocked and also is wearing a cute lil beanie.

Will I ever get over Tally in a Beanie? No, no I will not.

But soon she sees a familiar face in Mack the Dodger, and when she asks why she was redirected here, Scylla steps out to welcome her home. A lot has happened while she was off with her book club, and she has some catching up to do.

Scylla smiles at Tally

Raelle is going to be so shocked when she sees Scylla is now BFFs with her unit.

Anacostia and Abigail find a marshal who they hope will help them find THE Marshal, but before he can try, they’re interrupted by a horde of Fort Salem witches. Well, more specifically, an Oversight agent with a god complex backed by a horde of Fort Salem witches. Including my girl Cadet Cortez, who doesn’t seem to be like an enthusiastic participant in this scenario.

The wards go down and they’re able to waltz right onto Cession grounds, so Anacostia and Abigail know that someone on the Council must have been behind it.

And sure enough, when Thelma comes to, Millie has her tied to a chair. She’s been bitter about being left out of mining contracts and other such political things so she made a deal with the US Military to get the Bellweather unit. Thelma points out how nearsighted this plan was, because now they’re using it to break the treaty and start a war.

Back at the dodger camp, Tally uses her vision to try to find Wade; she has no luck there but she can see that the Council is in danger, but she thinks that if they all work together, they can save them.

Tally widens her eyes at Scylla

I just know this sweet girl and her expressive eyes never has an issue communicating while wearing a mask.

And despite the way they left things, Mack wants to offer his and the dodgers’ help.

Out by the border, the marshals try to order the military mob to leave, but they enter anyway and a fight ensues. The Oversight kills the marshal, much to the witches’ horror. My sweet Cortez looks heartbroken; this isn’t what any of them signed up for.

Abigail and Adil want to fight but Anacostia begs them to stand down. But Abigail isn’t exactly the listening type, so Anacostia wishes her well and leaves her be. She may not be able to stop her but she sure isn’t going to stand by and watch her get herself into trouble.

Outside the Council meeting cabin, Tally leads the dodgers and Scylla in their plan. While they wait for the right time to strike, Scylla takes in the moment and comments on how far they’ve come since Tally turned her in for being Spree. She doesn’t blame her for that, by the way; she knows Tally was doing it to protect Raelle, and she appreciates that about Tally. Tally uses this moment to tell Scylla about the witchbomb vision, and Scylla starts to hyperventilate at the thought of getting Raelle back just to lose her again, but Tally immediately rushes to her side. They can stop it. They can save her. Together.

Tally widens her eyes even more and gets real close to Scylla to...reassure her. Definitely that. Definitely not kiss her.

Why does Tally always look like she’s a breath away from kissing any woman she’s sharing a scene with? This is not a complaint, to be clear.

The witches at the border start to march on the Cession, but Adil steps out in front of them and whips the ground like it’s a carpet, sending a tank into the air. The Oversight is about to order the witches to windstrike him when suddenly his neck snaps, and then Abigail appears right next to him. As Ashley Nicole Williams said on Twitter last night, “Snap crackle pop ya camarilla twit.

Cadet Cortez tells Abigail to run and promises to cover for her as long as they can, and when Abigail tests her on this by asking about the guards, she orders the witches to release them and they do. Abigail maybe sees a little bit of herself in this girl and asks what her name is; Cadet Cortez says to call her Lupe.

Cadet Cortez looks stressed but confident at the same time


Abigail hops up on a car and gives the witches a rally speech. She tells them to protect the innocent at any cost, and to remember who they actually fight for. She tells them to play along when they can, but to stall, complicate, do whatever it takes to ruin the Camarilla’s plan. She tells them that they are General Petra Bellweather’s soldiers, and asks them to make her proud.

Abigail stands atop a car and looks stern as she gives her orders.

Abigail is the leader these witches deserve.

When the time is right, Tally and Scylla break into the Council cabin and save Thelma. They work together, Scylla getting to work undoing what knocked the Council Out, Tally chasing Millie like a horror movie villain, walking while Millie runs…right into Thelma’s arms.

Meanwhile in Madrid, Alder goes to an antique shop to try to find another piece of the First Song. There, she learns that the families of the last two pieces are no longer with us, but the man does have a music box with one of the songs in it because his people used to harvest vocal chords…aka what Hearst is doing right now. His student. The last piece of the First Song is lost to history, though. Before she leaves, Alder sees a box marked as if it’s her sister’s hanging rope but she was there and knows it’s not real. She knows this man, born Camarilla and Camarilla through and through, isn’t on her side, and he proves her point by stabbing her. Realizing his error as her eyes darken, he drops to his knees and begs for forgiveness, but it’s too late. And because Alder has a little bit of poetry to her, she hangs him with the false rope before she leaves.

Perhaps emboldened by Abigail calling her part of the team, Scylla leads the dodgers into the fight, telling them to use non-lethal work only because the witches are here against their will.

Scylla looks softly at her dodger army

Considering she started this series mass murdering people, I’d say we’ve come a long way! Growth! We love to see it.

Of course, almost at the same time Scylla is saying this, said witches are being instructed to use lethal force if necessary. But when they’re told to attack the cabin they start walking really slowly, following orders like a younger sibling playing the “I’m not touching you” game. Bottles come flying in and they’re enveloped in fog, and they start reciting an oath together.

Tally leads the council away, while Scylla decides to do something she thinks will protect her friends; something she thinks Raelle would do if she were here. At first it seems like her plan is using Thelma as bait, but as soon as the power dampening collar is on, Scylla’s face is revealed.

Scylla smiles up at her captors

When is a bear not a bear? When it’s a necromancer!

The Oversight goes into the cabin, but Tally didn’t get the memo about his armor bouncing work off it, so she gets knocked over. Despite two witches begging him to spare her, the Oversight looms over Tally, ready to strike, when suddenly he bursts into a spore cloud and when the cloud clears, Raelle is there.

Raelle stands over Tally, looking a bit out of sorts

Raelle “did I just jump out of a man” Collar, as I live and breathe.

Tally immediately bursts into tears and pulls Raelle into a tight hug. Together again, together at last. Raelle says she doesn’t even really know how she ended up here; she was following the feeling of Scylla through the darkness. And I guess could just sense Tally needed her. She asks where Scylla is, but like ships in the night they just missed each other.

Thelma comes in and is surprised to see the infamous Raelle Collar standing there, but there’s no time for questions, so she just helps Tally by getting under Raelle’s other arms while she tries to get her bearings; I guess gravity is a little different in the mushroom world.

Tally and Thelma hold Raelle up

Like a little mermaid on land!

In a scene I admit I don’t 100% understand, Anacostia is chilling at a diner when Nicte sits down next to her. They make what seems like small talk for a minute, but I guess they must have been talking in code, because when Anacostia leaves, Nicte follows, and then so do the rest of the diner patrons. Which makes more sense than Anacostia popping into a diner for a cuppa while there’s a war brewing. But maybe Nicte is up to no good? Spree-wise? Only time will tell.

Anyway, Abigail and Thelma meet back up and agree to join forces; they may have all been on different sides at one point, or even just parallel teams, but if they have any chance of winning, it has to be Everyone vs. the Camarilla.

Once they make their agreement, Thelma suggests Abigail go check on her friends, and when she does she sees her little shitbird, back again. She hugs and tells her it took her long enough.

Raelle hugs Abigail while Tally looks on

I love a family reunion.

And then all three members of the Bellweather trio come together in a group hug and my heart grows three sizes.

the Bellweather trio has a long overdue group hug

“Even though at times it seemed we were more like enemies,
I’d do it all again. My sister(s), my friend(s).”

They can’t celebrate for long because while the original members are finally reunited, the Bellweather unit has grown, and one of its members has been taken. So there’s only one thing to do: find her.

Tally runs up to her room to change out of her truck travel clothes, and finds Alder waiting for her in her room. She needs her help finding the final piece of the First Song, needs her visions. Speaking of visions, Tally tells her about the witchbomb vision she had, and Alder insists that the First Song is the only thing strong enough to stop the witchbomb. Convenient. She says to trust in the mother, and honestly the more she says that, the less I do.

But Tally trusts Alder, so she asks how far into the future she’ll need her to look. And Alder says she doesn’t need her to look forward; she needs her to look back.

Alder looks imploratively at Tally

“How many ex-girlfriends of yours am I going to find during this deep dive, Alder?” – Tally, probably

Scylla has been left cuffed in a truck, and she overhears some witches saying they saw Raelle. When she asks them to confirm it and they do, she’s thrilled. They don’t really understand why she’s smiling though; it’s not like she’ll ever see her again. She’s not going back to home sweet interrogation room. She’s going somewhere witches can check out any time they want, but they can never leave. Somewhere they call the slaughterhouse.

Scylla looks CONCERNED

“Are you sure it’s not like s’laughter house? Like a French comedy club?”

Next week, the turns table and Raelle has to save Scylla, and hopefully our girls can be properly reunited once and for all. It’s the least the TV gods could do, since they took The Wilds and First Kill from us in one week’s time.

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Valerie Anne

Just a TV-loving, Twitter-addicted nerd who loves reading, watching, and writing about stories. One part Kara Danvers, two parts Waverly Earp, a dash of Cosima and an extra helping of my own brand of weirdo.

Valerie has written 546 articles for us.


  1. “Why does Tally always look like she’s a breath away from kissing any woman she’s sharing a scene with? This is not a complaint, to be clear.”


    Valerie Ann, I just wanted to let you know that I can only skip through your formidable recaps atm because over here season 3’s not out yet and I don’t want to be spoiled completely. But: I’m at least totally here for the Tally appreciation! And will be back.

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