Salem: 2×09 ‘Wages of Sin’ recap and review




Mary is watching as the Grand Rite is being completed with Wainwright expressing his love and desire for the Queen Witch. She tells him in order to enjoy the benefits of witchcraft, he needs to prove his worth to the dark lord. She asks him to destroy his works regarding the plague and promises him for so much more. Wainwright burns his documents aka his life’s work, including the Malum.

Mary shows Tituba Increase’s corpse, which causes Tituba to yell at Mary for performing necromancy since it is dangerous. She shares what Increase has shared – Marburg’s weakness.

Mary delivers Little John’s breakfast and finds him missing. Marburg appears in her home and says, “Lost something? How careless.” Mary demands to know what happened to her son. Marburg reveals that her son is the sacrifice to complete the Grand Rite as the vessel for the Dark Lord, which will be done tomorrow night. Mary is distraught with the news and refuses to accept it. Marburg threatens to kill him if Mary doesn’t accept him as the sacrifice. Marburg leaves Mary crying.

Cotton is drinking in his home but is interrupted by Magistrate Hawthorne who reveals that Cotton was not allowed to return to Salem by the Boston folk. Cotton explains he is there to stop the witches. Hawthorne arrests him until Cotton is able to explain to him that he could prove witches exist. He tells him if he cannot trust him, he could trust Wainwright.

Wainwright tries to downplay the plague and everything in general that they saw in the forest. Cotton yells at the Magistrate to investigate, causing them to all go to the Crags (where the bodies are). They see the dead birds, but instead of the devilish black pitch, the corpses return again. Wainwright tries to explain Cotton’s hallucinations, but Cotton knows the witches got to Wainwright. Magistrate’s men hold Cotton back.

Sebastian pays a visit to Mary and tells her he wants to be with her. Wainwright shows up. Sebastian says kind words to Wainwright but telepathically instructs her to follow along with him. Sebastian offers to take him to the woods for his “initiation”, which Mary agrees in order for her to have her son back. Mary watches as she knows Wainwright is walking to his death.

Anne is in her home reading her father’s Book of Shadows (with Xander Berkeley’s voice! YAY!). In the book, he hopes he could have saved her from going down the dark path, but that he is always with her. She turns and briefly sees her father’s corpse in the mirror.

Wainwright and Sebastian walk together in the woods. Sebastian is impressed that Wainwright is not afraid of the woods and Wainwright confirms he’s ready to become one of them. Sebastian warns him that he may not survive the initiation, or at least his insanity intact. He pushes Wainwright into the black plague into hell and tells him he will comfort Mary in his absence.

Mary calls TItuba into her chambers and confronts her about the details of Little John as the Dark Lord’s vessel. All these years, she had been betrayed by her fellow Essex witches. She is pretty pissed off for Tituba deceiving her and they battle with Mary overtaking Tituba. In order to save herself, Tituba confesses that John Alden is alive and takes Mary to him.

John and Mary confront each other with him telling her he questioned why he loved her. She tells him she was at war with the Puritans who branded their friends and forbade their love. She tells him she was tricked by the witches and had to sacrifice their son, which she wished she never did. Poor John Alden looks shocked and really hurt. Tituba warns Mary not to release John, but she does. She tells him they have to save their son.

Meanwhile, Magistrate Hawthorne has Cotton on a horse carriage back to Boston. Cotton requests Anne to join him, but Hawthorne doesn’t allow it. Instead, he pays the driver to make sure Cotton is dead before arriving to Boston.

Mary shows John their son’s room and shared some details about Little John and the reasons for her sacrifice. She explains the circumstances of why she didn’t run away him – they presented their son to her and she had to stay with him. Mary begs him to help save their son.

With her father’s voice guiding her, Anne is practicing her magic. She is levitating objects with her thoughts, including having a flower to grow and die. Her father apologizes to her for the gift and curse of being a witch, with the curse being the devil. Anne suddenly teleports into the forest with the devil appearing before her and attempting to rape her. She screams for Cotton which he hears from a distance, but thinks nothing of it.

John asks Mary what they would need to do to stop Marburg. She tells him he must be there to protect their son, while Mary will go to her ship to destroy her coffin. Meanwhile on Marburg’s ship, she tells Little John he will be the comet that is flying.

As the comet is flying over the town of Salem, the townspeople come out to look at it. Anne is back in her home and closes her book, Tituba is tied up in her secret room, and Mary looks out at John as he walks away. She sends out a prayer to Little John that her and his father are coming for him. End scene.




We all knew Wainwright wouldn’t last long this season. I wasn’t upset over this loss. He was annoying and one dimensional. Before the season began, we were hinted that he had a dark secret, but he really had no secrets, other than wanting to become a witch… FOR SCIENCE. We knew he was going to end up either banished, insane, or dead by the end of the season. I’m glad they gave him a send-off after betraying Cotton’s trust. Welcome to hell, Wainwright.



Poor Mary. She had to find out about her son being the vessel to be sacrificed for the Dark Lord from Countess Marburg. Everything she worked so hard for to complete to have her son was all a lie.

Janet Montgomery does a amazing job in this episode containing her emotions and trying to get through to the man she was once madly in love with (and probably still in love with). It’s an intense rollercoaster for this character and she’s finally letting it all out. All the cards are on the table and she has nothing to lose.



I have to say, Shane West and Janet Montgomery have a lot of chemistry. This was their first real dialogue interaction since last season and it was deep. It was about damn time she told him about their baby they sacrificed. He needed to know why she left and betrayed him; it was all for their child. I’m so glad he understood and they are working together to save creepy little John.



After his meeting with his father, who told him he loved him, I could understand why he was getting drunk. He was doing everything he could to prevent his soul from going to hell. But now, he has to go back to Boston without Anne… with Hawthorne planning to kill him. I really hope they keep him this season. Salem is known for killing off our favorites (Increase and Magistrate Hale).



Even though I was so happy to hear (and see a glimpse) of Xander Berkeley’s character Magistrate Hale, I was quickly angry at the rape (or the possible rape) of virginal Anne Hale by the devil. We don’t fully know if she was raped because they did not show it, but we could assume it happened after we see her lying on the floor and closing her father’s Book of Shadows.

I have to say, I left this scene very hurt and angry. I understand every witch is a lover of Satan, but this was very unexpected and possibly, unneccesary. We know her powers were a gift and a curse, but that was just a sad scene, especially adding her screams to Cotton, was just too much for me. Salem was looking for shock value tonight and they did it.



  • I was really happy to hear Xander Berkeley’s Magistrate Hale voice as a guidance for Anne. I really hope he shows up physically, which was hinted at. She really is going to need his guidance, especially everything that happened tonight.
  • I need to know what happened to Isaac!!! Poor Isaac the Fornicator. The guy deserves a break.
  • I thought Tituba was stronger than Mary. She has been a witch longer, so seriously? Isn’t there a seniority with powers? I know Mary is the face of the witches because of her color and status, but I thought Tituba was a stronger witch. Well, Tituba… let’s hope Mary doesn’t find out you slept with her man.
  • This episode was the best episode of this season… so far. We got to see everything we wanted to see for Mary and John – everything is out. So much emotion from both characters and a potential life for them.
Facebook Comments

About author

Laura Sirikul
Laura Sirikul 1849 posts

Trekkie. Jedi. Whovian. Sherlockian. Hobbit. Sanrio. Comics. I am Spartacus. Warrior Princess. Superhero. Nerd. Follow me @lsirikul

View all posts by this author →