Beauty and the Beast leaned on the reset button pretty hard in last night's episode, choosing a whole new mythology to drive the show forward. As a result, Cat (Kristin Kreuk) is now the world's worst cop... and we've doubled down on government conspiracies.
The new season begins with a time jump from the events of last season's finale. It's three months later — Vincent's still missing, Cat's father is dead (and she still doesn't know he wasn't her biological father), and Gabe's alive, de-Beasted, and trying to prove that he's really Cat's ally. Also, Tess is wandering around, actually working, and expressing skepticism about the healthiness of Cat's obsession with finding Vincent.
JT manages to track down Vincent, who is with evil scientist Zhao. Zhao makes sure to let us know that he "IS Muirfield," Zhao gets away, and Vincent is found scar-less and with a severe case of amnesia – he doesn't remember TJ, Cat, or anything, really.
Cat's at her father's memorial, when she has a tense meeting with her sister, who chooses NOT to tell Cat about her true parentage. Which is great, since she then has a supertense meeting with her true father (an FBI agent named Bob). They have a conversation loaded with subtext, where she says that fathers never approve of their daughter's boyfriends, and he knowingly agrees.
Cat skips out on the memorial to track down Vincent, who tranq-ed TJ after getting a voice-altered call from "Condor." Vincent, it seems, has had his memories replaced with soldier obedience programming. Condor is — wait for it — FBI Bob, whose whole plan is apparently to use Vincent to kill Zhao/Muirfield and cover the connection between them and the government.
Cat arrives at the building where Zhao's screaming at Vincent for information. The building catches fire, and Vincent chooses to save Cat. Cat takes this as proof that their love is meant to be and that they now get to "fall in love with each other all over again."
And then Zhao turns up mauled and dead anyway.
So basically this whole episode served to set up a brand new status quo: Gone is the police procedural — Cat is now the worst NYPD detective ever, focused solely on Vincent and their love. Which has also been reset to be rebuilt from scratch.
They've doubled down on government conspiracy and interpersonal drama. Muirfield's dead, so the big bad's going to be FBI Bob and his cohorts. Whether or not these changes will make the show better remains to be seen.