Tag Archives: L.J. Smith

Step Inside The Secret Circle – A Look at one of the CW’s Most Promising New Fall Series

“Hi!  We are a group of extremely attractive, well-dressed, early twenty-somethings, pretending to be teens.  One of our favorite hobbies is to stare at the camera, in a vaguely angry (but, not too threatening) way.”

I’ll start off by saying that I don’t have the best luck writing these types of posts.  The last new “fall premiere program,” I previewed on my blog, before the pilot aired, was a show called My Generation.  Don’t remember it?  Maybe, that’s because it got CANCELLED AFTER TWO EPISODES!

And yet, given that THIS new program is (1)  is based on popular book series, written by the same author who penned The Vampire Diaries; (2) is being produced by Kevin Williamson, the Big Kahuna behind The Vampire Diaries; (3)  will air on the CW, Thursday nights, directly AFTER The Vampire Diaries, I feel fairly confident that this show will last AT LEAST half a season, if not longer . . .

I am so insanely beautiful and talented, that merely by standing in close proximity to me, YOU will also appear to be more beautiful and talented.”

So, now that I’ve (hopefully) proven that reading this blog post will not be a TOTAL waste of your time maybe just a partial waste? let’s delve into The Secret Circle, shall we?

The Source

As I mentioned earlier, this upcoming CW series (like the successful Vampire Diaries franchise before it) will be based on a collection of L.J. Smith novels bearing the same name.  The Secret Circle book series was a trilogy comprised of the following novels: (1) The Initiation, (2) The Captive, and (3) The Power.  Both the television and the book series revolve around a girl named Cassie,  who learns that she is a powerful teenage witch, who just so happens to belong to an elite “circle” of OTHER powerful teenage witches.  And yet, if The Secret Circle television series is anything like The Vampire Diaries television series, that’s about where the similarities between the books and the TV show will end . . .

One main difference between the books and television series that already has fans buzzing is the size of the titular Circle, itself.  The book calls for a coven of twelve teens to complete the circle, whereas the show only seems to require six.  Granted, in terms of consistent character development, a twelve-member regular cast can seem a bit overwhelming to some writers . . .

On the other hand, a number of fans question the showrunner’s decision to excise so many potential HOT MALE WARLOCk roles, on a show geared predominately toward young FEMALES.  In terms of teenage male leads, The Secret Circle only has two, for now.  Will a choice between just two dudes be enough to please fangirls, in the long term?  That remains to be seen . . .

The Cast of Characters

Leading lady, Cassie Blake, who undoubtedly will eventually become romantically involved with BOTH male leads (Sound familiar?) . . .

 . . . will be played by Brittany Robertson.   Some of you might remember Brittany as Lux from the recently canceled CW series, Life Unexpected. You also might recognize her as one of the many dead girls in Scream 4.  (Sorry to spoil the movie for you guys!).

Thomas Dekker plays the brooding and soulful, Adam Conant, boyfriend of “Good Witch” Diana Meade, and main love interest of Cassie Blake.  You might remember Thomas as John Connor from the recently canceled Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, or as, one of the many dead guys in The Nightmare on Elm Street remake.  (Am I the only one who is starting to notice a pattern, here?)

Phoebe Tonkin plays the bitchy, power-hungry, Mean Girl / potential “Bad Witch,” Faye Chamberlain.  Aussies might recognize Phoebe as Cleo from the the television series H20: Just Add Water.  She also played Fiona in the film Tomorrow, When the War Began.

Speaking of Aussies, Louis Hunter, who plays the flirtatious and slightly arrogant (but still sexy) Nick Armstrong, is, perhaps, best known for his role as Kyle in the Australian series, Out of the Blue.

Kind-hearted head witch, Diana Meade will be played by Shelley Hennig, who soap opera fans might remember as Stephanie Johnson on Days of Our Lives.

Rounding out the titular Secret Circle as Faye’s Mean Girl Sidekick witch, Melissa Glaser, is Jessica Parker Kennedy, who fans of the CW’s Smallville might remember as comic book villain, Plastique.

Arguably the shows most recognizable cast member, Gale Horold, plays the murderous Thomas Meade.  Television credits for Gale Harold include Hellcats, Queer as Folk, and Desperate Housewives.

And finally . . .

While perhaps best known as a freaky man-killing alien from the movie, Species, Natasha Henstridge, who plays the not quite trustworthy Principal Chamberlain, also had starring roles in television programs, including, Eli Stone and She Spies.

Analyzing the Extended Promo

Now, that you’ve met the cast, it’s time to take a look at the Extended Promo, which I plan to discuss in more detail below.  So, watch and learn, Witches and Warlocks! 

(Note: Due to some SUPER ANNOYING copyright restrictions, it looks like they’ve removed the extended promo for this show from EVERYWHERE it was posted, except for the CW Website, itself.  Nevertheless, if you still want to “watch with ME,” feel free to click on this link, either before, or while, you are viewing the analysis below.)

:00 – “My sweet Cassie, I did not want you to have this life.  But Destiny is not easy to run from.”

“Grrrrrrrr!  ROAD RAGE!”

Poor Cassie!  Apparently, “Destiny” is not easy to drive from, either.  We aren’t 30 seconds into the trailer, and already, Cassie has been driven off the road by some Asshat Driver, got a flat tire, and is about to lose cell phone reception, while stranded in Middle of Nowhere U.S.A..  Of course, judging by what happens to her next, this is probably the BEST part of her night . . .

:30 – “I know how to change a TIRE, MOM!”

Here’s a hint:  Don’t get too attached to Mommy, kids.  Because THIS ONE isn’t going to make it out of the promo alive.  I actually think this might be the first time I’ve ever seen a cast member DIE in the PREVIEW for a pilot episode.  Talk about a SPOILER ALERT!  I mean, that’s gotta be a first, right?  And we all know how much Kevin Williamson likes his BIG BODY COUNTS! 

I’m just wondering why (since Cassie’s mom is supposed to be this Big Powerful Witch) couldn’t she, I don’t know,  cast a spell to prevent her from . . . BEING BURNED ALIVE IN HER OWN HOME?  Weird . . .

:45 – [Insert sound of burning flesh here.]

We are just under the one-minute mark, when we get our first look at the EEEVIIL Thomas Meade, as he bakes Cassie’s mom for dinner.  I found the whole scene pretty shocking, the first time I saw it.  On a Non-Dead Mom note, notice how the Four Elements come into play in this scene.  Witch shows always tend to be big on the whole Four Elements thing, “earth, air, fire, water” and all that.  Notice how, the Evil One drops a bottle of water on the floor to trigger the burst pipe in Cassie’s kitchen, and lights the matches to trigger the fatal gas leak. 

Also, Dude’s got some SERIOUSLY FREAKY EYES!  Are we sure he’s not a vampire?

*sniffs*  “Do you smell something burning?”

1:04 – “Cassie.”

“I think I may have left the oven light on.”

Cassie’s mom .  . . DEAD .  . . in under two minutes.  Impressive.  You know what else I found impressive?  The fact that this good-hearted Mommy’s final thoughts were of her daughter’s soon-to-be orphan status.  (No word on “Daddy” yet.   I’m thinking there’s some sort of Big Backstory there.)  That sure was nice of Mommy to think so selflessly of her kid, while her body was getting barbecued. 

Because you know what MY final thought would have been, if I was in her position?  I suspect it would be something like, “Hmmm . . .  I wonder how painful it is to be burned alive in your own home.  I’m going to guess excruciatingly painful.  Time to test out this theory.” 

Then again, perhaps, it would be something a bit less eloquent, like, for example, “F*&K, I’M GOING TO DIE! AHHHHHHHHHH!”

1:15 – “Welcome to Chance Harbor.”

I noticed that, in the books, the town where the story takes place is called New Salem.  I’m kind of glad they changed it.   Because that would be a bit TOO MUCH Cheesy Witch Symbolism, don’t you think?  And yet, I can’t help but notice all the OBVIOUS parallels between THIS sleepy town, and TVD’s Mystic Falls. 

I mean, think about it, you’ve got the whole Small Town Hiding a Big Supernatural Secret thing . . . the Founding Families thing . .  . even the whole Old Diaries and Letters from the Past Inform the Present thing.  Plus, I’m willing to bet there’s only One Bar / Social Establishment HERE too!

“Been there, drunk that.”

1:25 – “Cassie!  I’m really glad you’re here.”  But I’m not glad that my kid died of some Weird Witchcraft Accident . . . because that would be, you know, inappropriate.”

 “This is the part where my eyes glow bright red, and I snap your neck.  Oh . . . wait . . . wrong show.  Sorry!”

Hmmm . . . Grandma looks pretty young to have a grandchild in her late teens, doesn’t she?  Come to think of it, most of the “parents” on this show, appear to be a bit young looking.  Maybe being a witch comes with anti-aging powers, or something?

I have to say, I’m already worried about Grandma’s fate on this show.  After all, we all know full well that the statistics regarding Grandmas surviving supernatural dramas are not exactly in her favor.  Just ask Sookie’s Granny on True Blood . . .

 . . . or Bonnie’s grandma on The Vampire Diaries .

Oh wait, you can’t ask them . . . because they are both DEAD!

1:35 – “And she will soon discover that her arrival will bring the Town’s Dark Secret to light.”

“If I see anything I haven’t seen before, I’ll throw a dollar at it.”

I love how when the voiceover teased that the Town had “Dark Secrets,” they chose to show us an image of Open-Shirted Nick, of all things . . .

Hot?  Yes.  Damon Salvatore-caliber hot?  No.

So, is that supposed to be the town’s Big Dark Secret, that hot guys hang out in windows with their shirts open?  Still, the fact that this six-minute preview featured BOTH a death, and a half-naked hot man, I find VERY promising . . .

1:37 –

And . . . here we are at Chance Harbor High.  So, do you think Cassie will actually GO TO SCHOOL on this show, or will she be a TOTAL derelict, like Elena Gilbert?

“Hey!  I resent that remark.  I am a VERY good student.  I attend EVERY school dance!”

1:40 – “We are happy to have you here, Cassie.  I’m Principal Chamberlain.  Your mother was  . . . very special to me.  And by “special” I mean I wanted to use my magical powers to turn her into a slug.

I once saw the woman pictured above in a movie, where she enticed a man to have sex with her, seconds before MORPHING INTO A SERIOUSLY UGLY ALIEN LIFEFORM, AND IMPALING HIS HEAD WITH HER SNAKE-LIKE TONGUE!  So, yeah, I don’t care how pretty Principal Chamberlain is, or how nice of a smile she has . . . I don’t trust her!

1:46 – “Have you seen her yet?”

“Did I SEE her?  I did a little striptease for her in front of my bedroom window.  She is now pregnant with my children.  Magical Powers ROCK!”

Well, HELLO LOVE TRIANGLE!  The romantic aspects of this tale COULD prove to be particularly interesting, considering that both of Cassie’s suitors are, at this time, technically “taken” by other members of the Secret Circle.  I’m eager to see how this plays out in the show’s first season.  However, beyond that, I already feel like, if this show wants to last, it’s going to need MORE hot male blood infused in it, and FAST!

1:53 – “She’s meeting a new Circle of Friends.”

Was it just me?  Or did this scene IMMEDIATELY make you think of the movie Mean Girls?  Phoebe Tonkin was ABSOLUTELY channeling Regina George, when she pulled that little locker trick.  Is it any wonder that her sidekick, Melissa, played Plastique in Smallville?  Get it . . . Plastique?  As in . . . The Plastics?

2:02 – “I saw you in school today.  How was your first day?”

*brood, smoulder, smirk, brood, smoulder, smirk*

Adam, i.e. Love Interest Number 1, is clearly angling for the “Dark yet Sensitive Type.”  How original!  It could work though.  So, far, I’m kind of seeing him as a cross between Stefan Salvatore and Jeremy Gilbert.  Anybody else getting those vibes from him?

2:20 – “With her here, we have REAL POWER now!”

 

And so the power to control the Circle begins between the “Good Witch” and the “Bad Witch.”  For the sake of the show, I’m hoping things are a bit more complicated than that.  Otherwise, the dichotomy will get real old, real fast.  I’m definitely liking Faye, as the edgy, yet vulnerable, villainess on the show, however.  She shows real promise . . .

2:33 – “How did the fire go out?”

Only YOU can prevent witchcraft-induced car fires . . .

It’s interesting that Faye, in trying to make Cassie recognize her supernatural abilities, chose, of all things, a Car Fire, especially considering that a Witchy Fire just so happened to be what killed the poor girl’s MOTHER.  And just like I wondered why Cassie’s mom, who KNEW she was a witch, didn’t use her powers to put out the fire, Faye seems to be wondering the same thing about Cassie.

As for the whole Rescue Thing . . .

. . .  did the writers REALLY expect us not to think about Twilight, here.  I know, I know, the book series on which this show is based came out LONG before Twilight did.  But those books also came out before a lot of the future fans of this show were BORN!

For better or worse, Twilight is what we remember NOW.  So, how could the creators of this show not see the quiet brooding supernatural creature, putting out the fire with his “powers,” and rescuing the damsel in distress from the flames, and not immediately think of Edward and Bella?  Just sayin’.

Oh, and Cassie TOTALLY screams like a girl! 🙂

3:09 – “Cassie, wait!  I think I can help.”

Umm . . . yeah, because THAT place isn’t creepy, AT ALL!  It kind of looks like the house at the end of the Blair Witch Project.  *shudders*

We are now half-way through the trailer.  And FINALLY, Cassie gets introduced to the titular “Secret Circle.”  It’s about damn time!

3:32 – “Oh, for god sakes, SPIT IT OUT!  You’re a witch.  You are a full-blooded, 100% witch.  We ALL ARE.”

Haha!  Well, thank you, FAYE!  I always hate when books and television shows take about 35 minutes to come clean about something you already figured out from reading the book jacket or watching the trailer.  At least ONE of the characters on this show has enough sense to call the REST of the characters out on their B.S.  3.5 minutes in, and Faye is already, by far, my favorite character on this show.

3:45 – “Each family has a book.  A book that lays out each family line.”

Ahh, yes the Obligatory Ancient Book wherein you can find the Convenient Cure Alls for all your Plot Problems!  You can’t have a  supernatural series without one!  Speaking of TVD-parallels, as I mentioned earlier, I also found the “six families” concept, to be very “Founding Families-esque. 

Oh, and for those of you who have ever seen the film The Craft, Melissa’s speech, about the Circle only being able to do “lame” spells, until Cassie came along, ABSOLUTELY reminds me of a similar comment made in that film.

 

4:03 – “We can’t let it happen AGAIN.”

Oh, Silly Naive Granny!  Don’t ask the Evil Alien Lady questions like that!  Have I mentioned yet how worried I already am about the fate of this character?

4:17 – “It was covered up.  Something went wrong.  People got hurt.   So, they abolished witchcraft.”

The way they ordered the images in this particular 10-second sequence definitely made it seem as though Thomas Meade killed Cassie’s mom, so that she would be forced to return to Chance Harbor, and complete the “Circle.”  The question is “Why?”  What sort of spell does he want them to cast?

4:28 – “With Cassie here, our powers are magnified ten times over.”

Uh oh!  SOMEONE made it rain, but didn’t remember to bring her umbrella.  Not too swift.

The next sequence features a few images of Faye being “bad ass” with her “rain-making” powers.   I don’t know why they always do crap with the weather in these witch shows.  If I had witchy powers, I’d make myself a millionaire, who looked like a model, and force all hot male celebrities to fall instantly in love with me.  It’s called “creativity” witches.  It’s time you got some .  .  . And I mean that in more ways than one . . . 

We also see that Cassie’s Return has spurred an already restless Faye to more vigorously challenge Diana’s position of power within the Circle.  The problem is, with only six members, being the “leader” of the Circle doesn’t really seem like that big of a deal.  This is definitely a situation where having more “coven” members would have bolstered the plot.

4:45 – “My dear, sweet Cassie.  You finding this means I am gone, and for that I am so sorry.”

Speaking of cliches in supernatural stories . . . here comes the Mandatory, Mildly Touching, Plot Explanation Letter from an Important Dead Person in the Protagonist’s Life  . . . YAY!

4:57 – “It’s incredible.”

Oh, Hell to the NO!  Not another, Romantic Use of Magic Moment!  Where have I seen THIS before?

Oh, that’s right . . . EVERYWHERE!  And, then we have the Almost Kiss . . .

Now, THAT is what I call an appropriate use of your powers, Adam . . . the power to get into your not-girlfriend’s panties.  Well played, Stud . . . at least, until she LEFT YOUR ASS in the forest!

5:15 – “Bad things happen, when you mess with fate.”

And even WORSE things happen, when you mess with Evil-Eyed Thomas Meade, Random Guy!

5:29 – “I was a good friend of your mother’s (and by ‘good friend’ I mean ‘murderer’).”

I LOVE the twist that Evil Thomas Meade is actually GOOD WITCH Diana Meade’s DAD!  I genuinely didn’t see that one coming.  Except, I REALLY don’t think this guy is old enough to have an 17 or 18 year old daughter, do you?  Like I said . . . Witch Fountain of Youth. 

5:37 – “You did the right thing bringing her here.  She has the gift.”

A-HA!  I knew the Alien Principal and Evil-Eyed Meade were in CAHOOTS!  (Just so you know, “cahoots” is my new favorite word.  Except to see it a lot on this blog in the future . . . )

5:40 –

Awww, Nick is writing Cassie grammatically incorrect love letters from his window!  Next thing you know, he will be connecting two soup cans together, with pipe cleaners, and trying to use it as a cell phone.  Speaking of cell phones, doesn’t NICK have one?  I mean, he can’t CALL Cassie, and ASK her if she’s OK?  Talk about LAZY!

5:47 – “I don’t have to do a thing.  The Circle will take care of that without even knowing it.”

[Insert Evil Laugh Here]

OK.  So, how manyof you were actually fooled into thinking that Principal Chamberlain was a “nice lady?”  Yeah, I didn’t think so . . .

5:56 –  “Believe in the power of the Circle . . . You have incredible Power.  People will come for it.  They will come for YOU.”

“Make it stop.”  (My sentiments exactly, Cassie.  This trailer needs to STOP, before you spoil the entire first season . . . or, at least, the first episode.)

And so, we come to the point in our script, where Cassie finally embraces who she is, and uses her powers to stop that Freak Rainstorm that Faye made, earlier in the trailer.  Should we be happy, that Cassie is doing what Fate has seemingly intended for her to do?  Or do we fear that she is playing right into the hands of the Evil Adults? 

I guess you will have to WATCH this Fall to find out . . .

And there you have it, an extended preview of this falls new “hot” supernatural drama, The Secret Circle . . .

So, what did you think?  Will you stay tuned to the CW after TVD, and try this one out, for a “spell?”  Or do you plan to vanquish this series from your memory, forever?

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Battle of the Bad Boy Vampires: Damon Salvatore (The Vampire Diaries) versus Eric Northman (True Blood)

Those of you who know me and/or have read this blog before, probably suspected that the time would come when I would write a post that pit my two favorite television vampires (both of whom are based on characters fromnovels) against one another . . .

But WAIT!  Before you stake me, or snap my neck like a twig, please know that this is REALLY not a competition, in the traditional sense of the term.  I merely aim to illustrate some similarities between these two extremely unique and dynamic fangsters . . .

(But, before I begin, I’d like to give a shout out to the Always Brilliant Amy, over at imaginarymen, who remains the reigning queen and founder of the TV Boyfriend Olympics.  Without her, this post would never have been written.  Additional thanks go out to the Fabulous Cherie, over at myspideysenseistingling, and the Remarkable Madeleine, both of whom have a depth of vampiric fangirl capacity that knows no bounds.)

Above all else, Viking Vampire, Eric Northman, and Fangy Rebel Without a Cause, Damon Salvatore, are both EXTREMELY SEXY!  In fact, they are unequivocally sexy, no matter what they happen to be doing, at any given moment.  Whether they are . . .

 .  . . preparing for war . . .

 . . . or lounging around in bed . . .

. . . or driving around in hot super expensive sports cars, with the top down . . .

 . . . or having a little “snack” . . .

 . . . or forgetting how to button their shirts . . .

 . . . or getting dressed up for a night on the town . . .

 . . . or breaking in their new leather jackets . . .

. . . or wearing certain BLUE PANTY DROPPER articles of clothing 😉 . . .

 . . . rest assured these immortal beings are going to be looking hot, while they are doing it.

And yet, being an INSANELY AWESOME Television Vampires isn’t just about looking good.  (That’s most of it . . . of course . . . but not all of it. ;)) To be truly insanely awesome, you’ve also got to have the personality to match the looks.    And for both Eric and Damon, a fun and snarky sense of humor functions as the perfect accessory to any item of clothing (or, no clothing at all, for that matter)!

Behold . . . the funny .  . .

(Don’t worry!  I’m not playing favorites, by using a longer video for Eric than for Damon.  I just take them, as I find them!)

So, now we’ve got a handle on their looks, and their respective senses of humor.  But if you want to learn what REALLY make Damon Salvatore and Eric Northman tick, you’ve really got to watch them in action.  What follows is a comparison study of fourteen (seven a piece) arguably similar Damon and Eric scenes from their respective shows .  . .

(Note: For clips that are non-embedded, just click the internal links for your viewing pleasure!)

Let’s BITE into it, shall we?

Romantic Manipulation

In the REAL WORLD, when you look like Ian Somerhalder or Alexander Skarsgard, NO fancy hypnotic magic, or blood bonds are necessary to ensure romance.  When you want to get laid . . . all you’ve got to do is ASK!  But in TV Land, virtually EVERYONE is beautiful, and girls can be (no offense to Elena and Sookie) kind of dense, sometimes.  For this reason, both of our Bad Boy Vamps, at least initially, used vampire magic to add a little OOMPH to their respective courtship rituals .  . . with varying results.

First up is Damon, and his attempt to mesmerize Elena — the number one object of his affections — to make out with him.  The “mesmerizing” part seems to work . . . (She’s not BLIND, after all!).  But the “making out” part . . . well . . . not so much.  Because what Damon doesn’t know is that Elena is wearing a vervain necklace, which makes her impervious to vampire mind control.  He gets an “A” for effort, though!

Eric Northman had slightly better luck with Sookie, when he tricked her into drinking his blood, thereby establishing a Blood Bond between the pair.  As a result of the Blood Bond, Sookie will have uncontrolled sexual dreams about Eric (I have those ALL THE TIME!).  He will also always be able to sense her feelings (like, when she’s horny, for example ;)), and instinctively know when she’s in danger (so he can rescue her).  Well played, Viking Vamp!

 

Dream Walking (a.k.a. Inception – Vampire Style)

So, by now, we’ve all probably seen, or at least heard about the film, Inception, and its erudite discussions about one’s ability to manipulate the dreams of another. 

In TVD world, vampires are capable of controlling other’s dreams, Inception style, as Damon does in this next clip.  (Hint: We know it was Damon making Elena’s dream, based on his creepy crow mascot hanging out by her bedroom window, near the end of the scene.  By the way, I’m SO GLAD the writers nixed that lame plot device!)

In True Blood, sexual vampire dreams tend to stem from the blood bonds between human and vampire.  Never do the writers of True Blood ever explicitly mention dream manipulation.  And yet, in this next clip, Sookie clearly KNOWS that she’s dreaming, and Eric does appear to be purposefully using the dream to send her an important message.  This particular dream scene may also give you a little sense of deja vu, when you watch a similar REAL LIFE (well . . . real TV life . . . at least) scene that takes place between the two characters, later on in this post.

(Note:  This is actually just one of THREE dreams Sookie has about Eric, and it’s not even the HOTTEST one.  I simply chose it to make a point about Damon and Eric both using Dream Manipulation Tactics on Sookie and Elena.  You can watch Sookie’s other dreams about Eric here.)

 

Murder By Seduction

Of course, Damon and Eric would never WILLINGLY hurt the women they love.  But they don’t seem to mind hurting others all that much . . .

In this next clip, Damon lures the unsuspecting Vicki Donovan into his lair, plies her with liquor, sexy dancing, and promises of genuine understanding and affection.  And then . . . well . . . I’ll just let you watch, and see for yourselves.

Though Damon’s motives for “murdering” Vicki Donovan were never made entirely clear, during the series, one suspects they had something to do with Damon wanting to wreak havoc on his little brother’s life.  (Damon promised to make Stefan’s life an unliving hell, after the latter coerced him into becoming a vampire, seemingly against his will).  Damon eventually “revived” Vicki from death, by turning her into a vampire, shortly after initially killing her.  Ironically enough, it was at the hands of STEFAN that Vicki met her True Death.

This picture SHOULDN’T be funny . . .  but it kind of is!

Likewise, Eric seduces and ultimately murders Vampire Talbot, to wreak havoc on Vampire King Russell Edgington’s life.  Eric seeks vengeance against Russell, for murdering his parents, centuries ago.  You see, Talbot is Russell’s “soulmate.”  Though, as you will clearly see in the next clip, vampires and monogamy don’t exactly mix . . .

(Note:  This clip is DIRTY with a capital “D.”  Parental discretion is advised, KIDDIES!  Don’t say I didn’t warn you!)

 

Hot Bod Taunting

“When you’ve got it, flaunt it!”  These are words to live by . . . even if you’re undead!  And Damon and Eric have NO qualms about displaying their “wares” to the women they love, in order to show them EXACTLY what they are missing . . .

In this next scene, Damon might be drunk, but he’s NO dummy!  He knows that, once Elena gets close enough to him to button up his strategically opened shirt, she will get a peek at those abs, a whiff of that vampire man musk, and be his forever.  Even if she doesn’t know it yet . . .

As for Eric, he takes Hot Bod Taunting to a whole other level!  Unlike Damon, who tactfully alludes to the fact that he’s a Lion in the Sack, Eric wears his HOURS and HOURS of nonstop Sexual Conquesting like a badge of honor . . . one located right below his belly button . . .

 

Vulnerability Due to Loss of “Maker”

Damon may be head over heels in love with Elena now, but for about 140 years, he loved her doppelganger Katherine, the woman who initially turned him into a vampire.  Damon loved Katherine so much, in fact that he risked everything to “rescue” her from the tomb in which he thought she was buried undead.  So, when the tomb was opened, and Katherine was still nowhere to be found, Damon was heartbroken.  It was the first time in the series, where we really saw this tough-as-nails vampire break down emotionally.  And when he needed a shoulder to cry on, Elena’s was the first one he sought . . .

Unlike Damon, Eric may have never done the horizontal mambo with his maker, Godric (at least, not that we know of).  But he did love him, in the way that a father loves his son.  And when Godric “met the sun” (i.e. committed suicide by burning to death) Eric felt completely lost.  For the first time in the series, the Viking Vamp cried tears of blood.  Eric was inconsolate over the True Death of Godric.  Without Sookie there to support him, who knows what self-destructive acts he might have committed?

Romantic Gestures with BITE!

Who said bloodsuckers couldn’t be romantic?  Let’s face it! When guys have been on this earth for as long as Damon and Eric have been, they KNOW when they are in love.  And they are NOT afraid to show it.

In the episode Rose, Damon has just rescued Elena from an Evil Old Vampire who kidnapped her.  He also retrieved from said Evil Old Vampire her precious vervain necklace, which protects her from vampiric compulsion.  When Damon visits to Elena’s home to return the necklace, he decides that this is the perfect moment to let Elena know exactly how he feels about her. 

Sounds simple, right?  It isn’t . . . Because Damon knows better than anyone, that True Love sometimes requires us to make the most painful of sacrifices.

Eric Northman knows a thing or two about sacrifices, himself!  After all, he’s willing to DIE the True Death, in order to rid the world of the PURE EVIL that is Russell Edgington.   When you are about to die, the things that are most important to you, suddenly become crystal clear.  And nothing else matters. 

Remember when I showed you that Dream Scene between Sookie and Eric?  Well . . . IT’S BACK . . . for real, this time!

Rescuing the Woman He Loves . . . For Her OWN GOOD . . . Whether She Wants It Or NOT!

As a member of the fairer sex, I can admit, that us ladies can be pretty stubborn when we want to be — especially when we feel strong enough about something, that we are willing to fight to the death for it.  And while, most of the time, we are ABSOLUTELY right . . . there are sometimes (very rarely, of course ;)) when we are wrong.  Enter the Hot Vampires with Hero Complexes to rescue us . . . even if they have to drag us away, kicking and screaming, in order to do it . . .

In this next clip, Elena has set off on a Suicide Mission.  She plans to turn herself over to an EVIL HOMICIDAL VAMPIRE, in order to save the lives of the people she loves.  But Damon loves HER . . . and he’s not having it . . . AT ALL!

Like Elena Gilbert, Sookie Stackhouse always seems to be throwing herself into harms way.  But she doesn’t have to go far from home to find trouble.  It usually just knocks on the door, and comes right in!  In this particular instance, Sookie is unwittingly being stalked by some Killer Werewolves.  It’s a good thing her Friendly Neighborhood Vampire  is available to help her in her time of need (even if she would rather talk about Boring Vampire Beeeel, than do important things . . . like NOT GET EATEN)!

So, there you have it: seven situations and fourteen sexy scenes to compare and contrast.  Not bad, for a pair of undead bloodsuckers, right?

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Filed under Alexander Skarsgard, Ian Somerhalder, The Vampire Diaries, True Blood

Hungry Like the Wolf – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Bad Moon Rising”

I gotta say, given the build up this whole “Lockwood Curse” has had since the end of last season, Mason’s big drooly “Presto Chango,” this week, was kind of “all bark, no bite,” wasn’t it?  I mean, literally . . . he snarled, he barked . . . he made googly eyes at Tyler, like he was the boy’s “b*tch” (no pun intended).  He just didn’t .  . . you know . . . bite

To be honest, that was a little disappointing.  You see, I thought for SURE that random ho-bag, Amy (who is NOT to be confused with my fabulous blogger pal, who shares the same name, BTW), was a prime candidate to become Dog Meat / win the Senseless Death of the Week Award.

I was wrong . . .

This is not to say that there weren’t ANY fun things about “Bad Moon Rising.”  For example, I thought the “B” plot was quite intriguing . . . or, perhaps, I should call it the D and E plot . . .

I’ll have what SHE’S having . . .

So, without further adieu, what do you say we chain ourselves to our minivans, and bark at the moon?

Or . . . maybe we’ll just get started with the recap, instead?

Return of the “Rick”

Hey, boys and girls!  Guess who’s back with a Brand New Nickname, and a “Useless” New Girlfriend?

Our episode begins with one of TVD’s classic Pow Wows of Sexiness and Plot Explanation.  Said Pow Wow is held, of course, at the typical headquarters for such events, namely, the Salvatore Brothers’ Casa de Rich and Awesome.  Joining our usual trio of attendees to the Pow Wow is Alaric Saltzman, who, suddenly, everyone is referring to as “Rick.”  

This makes Alaric the only character on this show to actually have a nickname (except for Damon, who I sometimes refer to as “My Boyfriend.”)

If you want him, you will have to get through me first . . .

Why did they invite Alaric, you ask?  Because it was the third episode, and the writers figured it was about time Matt Davis had some lines. You see, the Salvatore brothers . . .

 in their infinite wisdom (and insane hotness), recalled that Alaric’s former wife, Isobel

 Known aliases: Elena’s Bio Mom, Heartless Vampire B*tch 

 . . . was a doctoral candidate at Duke University, who studied  “folklore.”  Apparently, said “folklore” didn’t only include vampires.  It also included lycanthropes or, more specifically, werewolves.

Kudos to the writers for providing us a (sort of) explanation here, as to why our favorite Vampire Detective Agency (Stefan and Damon) has been so unbelievably slow in figuring out what the rest of us have known for about half a season now: namely, that the Lockwood’s are, literally, Dirty Dawgs! 

“I’ve been on this planet 160-odd years, and I’ve never seen one.  If werewolves exist, where the hell are they?”  Damon inquires, throwing in a dash of his trademark “Eye Thing” for good measure.

“My mouth may be talking about wolves, but my eyes are TOTALLY undressing Elena, right now . . .”

 And then, just in case his youthful charm and unmatched good looks had made you temporarily forget, Damon chose this moment to remind fans just how OLD of a fogey he really is, by making, not one, but TWO Lon Chaney (Junior and Senior) references, and one Bela Lugosi one.  Now, while I knew that Bela Lugosi was the original Hollywood Vampire . . .

He’s not too bad looking — definitely NO Salvatore brother, though.

  . . . I’ll admit, I had to Google the two Lon Chaneys.  Apparently, the younger one played Wolfman in movies (hence, the reference here).  Also apparently, when he wasn’t in costume . . . Wolfman was actually kind of hot.

The Lost Salvatore Brother?

As for his father . . .

 . . . well, I’m sure he had a really nice personality.

Anyway, recognizing that having werewolves in Mystic Falls would be, in Damon’ words, “not good” for our little Scooby Gang, Damon and Alaric decide to take a trip down to Duke to “borrow” Isobel’s research on the creatures. 

Damon and Alaric:  Together again.  How bromantic!

Meanwhile, Elena, who is desperate to find out why she looks so much like Vampire Katherine, sees Isobel’s research as a possible treasure trove of information on the subject of her doppelganger. 

So, despite the fact that, Damon, the vampire she is desperately attracted to and can’t stop thinking about hates, is going on the trip, Elena decides to tag along.  Unfortunately, for Elena, Stefan  . . .

 . . . has to babysit Baby Vamp Caroline . . .

 . . . and can’t come along.  But that’s OK!  Elena can still use Stefan to make Damon jealous!

OK, Elena.  Now, I actually like the whole “meanspirited-ness” thing you have going on during this episode.  So, I’m going to give you an “A” for effort.  But here’s a little hint:  when you are trying to prove to someone that you are “so over them,” you might want to try .  . . oh. .  . I don’t know .  . . NOT staring longingly at that person, while you are MAKING OUT WITH SOMEONE ELSE.  . . just saying.

What Elena was doing . . .

What Elena was thinking . . .

While Elena is OUTSIDE tonguing Stefan and eye-f*cking Damon, Alaric / Rick is inside, hitting on Useless Aunt Jenna .  . .

However, when things get too close for comfort, suddenly Alaric is all “I’m not ready for a relationship.  It’s not you it’s me, blah, blah blah.”

(Honestly, I’m not really sure why we are supposed to CARE about whether Alaric dates Useless Aunt Jenna.  I guess it’s just a way for Alaric to kill time, while he waits for his TRUE LOVE, Damon, to realize that he exists . . .)

Picspam courtesy of http://fyeahteambadass.tumblr.com/

“You hate me, huh?  That sounds like the BEGINNING of a love story, to me . . . not the end of one.”

During the ride to Duke University, a Super Sulky Elena rides in the back, while the Ambiguously Gay Duo, Damon and Alaric, keep the seats warm, up front.  Damon (who clearly feels that one and 1/4 episodes is MORE than enough time to get over someone trying to MURDER YOUR BABY BROTHER) inquires into the current status of Elena’s “forgiveness” of him.  “You know this pretending to hate me thing, is getting a little silly,” jokes Damon, as he aims his best “Eye Thing” into the back seat of Alaric’s car.

When Elena replies with the obvious — that the murder of one’s brother requires a mourning period more substantial than a commercial break —  Damon notes that there is a very big asterisk next to that statement.

Jeremy is still alive.

(Ahhh, Damon.  Between your obscure fogey film references, and your use of archaic grammatical symbols, you really are proving yourself to be elderly today, aren’t you?)

Elena uses this opportunity to pose to Damon the question fans have been pondering since the Season Premiere, namely: Did Damon see the Ugly Ass Ring of Immortality on Jeremy’s finger, before he decided to break the little guy’s neck?

To this inquiry, Damon responds, “Elena, I SAW the ring.  It’s a big tacky thing.  It’s hard to miss!”

THANK YOU, DAMON!  It’s HIGH TIME someone FINALLY noticed how majorly UGLY this ring is!

More Caroline-y than EVER BEFORE!

Speaking of Ugly Ass Rings, is it any wonder that Caroline bitched about the lack of stylishness of her brand new Vampire Sunscreen one?  “I have to wear this ring for the rest of eternity,” whines Caroline.  “Shouldn’t I at least get to choose what it looks like?” 

(Given the Salvatore brothers TERRIBLE taste in jewelry, I’d be inclined to say “Yes, you should, Caroline.”)

But, perhaps, I should backtrack . . .

At the opening of the episode, Caroline is avoiding Matt (who wants to go down to the old Lockwood Swimming Hole for Tyler’s outdoor party) because she can’t go out in the sun, without frying like bacon . . .

Stefan, recognizing that Bonnie’s witchy powers can make a Vampire Sunscreen Ring, and that being with Matt is Caroline’s one link to whatever humanity she has left, tries to convince Bonnie to do the spell.  But Bonnie doesn’t want to do it, because she is a total asshole worried that Caroline will hurt someone again, if allowed to walk in the light. 

(Ummm Bonnie, what time of day did Caroline kill someone last week?  That’s right .  . . AT NIGHT!  And, therefore, you think that not making the ring for your supposed best friend is going to save lives because . . .)

Hello, there, person who is a FEMALE, a MINORITY, and a WITCH.  Perhaps, you’d be interested in learning a thing or two about TOLERANCE of other species  . . .

Ultimately, Bonnie agrees to place a spell on Caroline’s ring, but only after she ANNOYINGLY lectures Caroline about the whole “not killing people” thing, like the lame ass Debbie Downer-witch she’s become.  Then, after instructing Caroline on the importance of preserving all life, Bonnie nonchalantly risks burning Caroline to a crisp, by ripping open the shades to her bedroom, and LETTING THE SUNSHINE IN!

Keep smiling, and shining, knowing you can always count on me, for sure . . . that’s what friends are for!

Once Caroline is cleared for Sun Worship, Papa Stefan (ever the understanding parent) allows her to attend Tyler’s party, provided she feed on bunnies with him first . . .

“You don’t want to eat ME, do you Caroline?  Might I interest you in some Tasty B*tchy Bonnie-witch, instead?”

When a stressed-out Caroline unloads all her neuroses on poor Stefan, during their morning hunt, he notes wryly that “when someone becomes a vampire, all their natural personality traits are amplified.” (NEW VAMPIRE RULE ALERT!)

Upon hearing this, Caroline correctly notes that she will now be an “insecure, neurotic, control freak on crack.”  And, to prove her point, when Caroline reunites with Matt at the Swimming Hole, she goes BALLISTIC on Slutty Amy, for flirting with her man. 

Matt . . .

 . . . far from being turned on by the sheer extent of her girlfriend’s devotion, stomps away from Uber Possessive Caroline in a pouty huff.

Meanwhile, Tyler . . .

. . . has become suspicious of Uncle Mason, after seeing the latter lurking around an old underground “slave cellar.”  It is this suspicion, perhaps, that causes him to ignore Uncle Mason’s warning that it’s a Full Moon. And if Tyler doesn’t get all his friends off the property by nightfall, “someone will wind up wasted, and dead at the bottom of the lake.”

(Well . . . that pretty much sounds like every horror movie, I have EVER SEEN!)

“Pull it out, Baby!  It hurts (SO GOOD)!”

Over at Duke University, Isobel must have been pretty darn important, because her office looks like a Mansion / Ancient Artifact Museum.  And her old student / assistant, Vanessa . . .

(played by Courtney Ford)

 . . . seems literally willing to guard the place with her life.  Moments after the gang arrives, Vanessa shoots a crossbow in Damon’s and Elena’s direction.  The immortal Damon gallantly steps forward to take the proverbial “bullet” on Elena’s behalf.  While Alaric struggles to disarm Courtney, Damon and Elena engage in a thinly veiled sexual conversation over the phallic arrow lodged beneath the muscle fibers of Damon’s perfect abdominals . . .

 Yummy!

“Pull it out!  Pull the damn thing out!  It hurts so goodYES!  YES!  YES!” Damon whines, as Elena straddles him, rocks back and forth a bit, and, finally, breathing heavily, yanks the big stick out of his midsection. 

(Thank you for this, writers.  Clearly, you know how to give this Pervy Fangirl EXACTLY what she wants, while still sticking to your TV-14 rating.)

Watching this scene, I couldn’t help but be reminded of another vampire / human encounter on television.  This one also involved a morally ambiguous vamp “taking a bullet” for an ambivalent human female, and forcing said female to bodily remove the offending weapon from the vampire’s body . . .

I’m referring, of course, to the scene in True Blood, during Season 2.  In that scene, Eric tricked Sookie into sucking a bullet from his stomach, so that she would be forced to swallow his blood, and, thereby, be bonded to him forever . . .

“That b*tch i SOOOO DEAD!”  Damon remarks, referring to the woman who just crossbowed him.

“If you kill her, I will never talk to you again,” threatens Elena, childishly.

“You are starting to manipulate me,” Damon notes wryly.

“And I LOVE being manipulated.  Just ask Vampire Katherine . . .”

When Vanessa has calmed down enough for Alaric to unhand her, the grad student admits that, having reviewed Isobel’s research, she freaked upon running into the Definitely Dead Damon Salvatore, and Elena, a girl who LOOKED just like Vampire Katherine. 

Later, as the crew begins poring through boxes of Isobel’s research, Elena and Vanessa bond over boys and vervain plants.  “He is a first rate, jackass,” Elena whispers to Vanessa, looking over her shoulder at Damon.

Damon overhears and smiles.

“So THAT’S the pet name she plans to call me, when we’re doing the NASTY, tonight!  Daddy LIKE!”

Later, Damon sidles up to Elena to continue their Flirt Fest 2010.  “It’s a bummer we aren’t friends anymore, because I could tell you what I know,” he coos.

“Now who’s manipulating?”  Elena replies, trying to hide the smirk on her face.

Mental F*cking = all of the heat, none of the STDS!

Unfortunately, Vanessa has to ruin all the fun, by launching into a seemingly endless monologue of Plot Explanation Sans Sexiness, which seems to be the only purpose, thus far, for her character being on this show.  Vanessa explains to us that some Aztec curse made vampires Creatures of the Night, and werewolves Servants of the Moon.  She also describes the two species as mortal enemies.  “According to legend, a werewolf bite can kill a vampire,” remarks Vanessa. 

(And what exactly does it do to humans?  Turn them into wolves?  Give them a gnarly tattoo?  I guess we will find out soon enough . . .)

The “Serious” Vampire Look

While Elena and Damon are flirting over at Duke, Stefan and Caroline seem to be flirting with one another, back home.  Just as Stefan teased Caroline earlier about her neuroses, Caroline playfully taunts Stefan about his excessive seriousness, and the  stern looks he keeps giving Mason, at the swimming hole.  And I’ll be darned if the friendly teasing doesn’t cause the usually Serious Stefan to crack a smile or two.

Eventually, however, Caroline runs off to find Boy Toy Matt.

Apologizing for her earlier bad behavior, Caroline promises her beau “no more drama,” and then pulls him into the woods for a substantial makeout session, under the light of the Full Moon.

While the pair are going at it, Stefan receives a call from Elena, in which she relays to him the information she uncovered about werewolves, and the unique brand of danger they pose to vampires.  Ever the concerned Papa, Stefan rushes off to protect Caroline.

Meanwhile, Tyler is in the woods making out with Slutty Amy, a.k.a. Boy Toy Matt’s Sloppy Seconds.  Apparently, the girl had taken Caroline’s mind control command to “go after someone single” literally.  To Tyler’s credit, when Slutty Amy awakens from her compulsion, and ditches Tyler’s ass, he doesn’t go into a rage, like Season 1 Tyler would probably do. 

(I guess the writers are trying to make this Teen Wolf more likeable, after all . . .)

“Oh, come on!  How could you NOT like me?  I wear pajamas to my own keggar!  Now, if that doesn’t make me a Loveable Dork, I don’t know what does!”

Down in the underground cellar, Mason has chained himself to some rocks, to protect Tyler and his friends from his Wolfy Wrath.  However, upon hearing his cousin’s voice above ground, Mason decides to relocate . . . to also ABOVE GROUND.  Mason eventually chains himself to his van . . . which to me seems like THE DUMBEST IDEA EVER! 

So let me get this straight . . . you were concerned about hurting the teens located MANY FEET ABOVE YOU.  So, you decided to . . . come to ground level and be CLOSER TO THEM? 

“If this car’s a rockin, don’t come a knockin'”

When the Full Moon finally hits the sky two things happen that should surprise presisely NO ONE. (1) Caroline vamps out on Matt and tries to eat him; (2) and Mason, upon turning wolf, breaks free of the chains attaching him to his van.

DUH!

Fortunately, two more FAIRLY predictable things happen, to prevent anyone from getting hurt:  (1) Stefan tackles Caroline to the ground, before she has a chance to finish her Matt Sandwich;

“This is me, playing the HERO again .  . . and looking Super Sexy in my Hoodie of Hedonism.”

and (2) Tyler stares down Wolfy Mason, preventing him from attacking Stefan and Caroline.

“This is ME, doing my Endzone Dance, because my character is FINALLY relatively sympathetic.”

When it is all over, Tyler confronts a VERY DIRTY and VERY NAKED (but still tasty) Mason about his wolfishness (See picture above).  Nearby, Caroline compels Matt to forget that she ate him.  Stefan then gives him vervain, to protect him from being a future Snack de Caroline. 

Then, Papa and Baby Vamp engage in a conversation about the difficulties associated with protecting the humans they love from their own vampiric darksides.  Following that conversation, Caroline purposefully ruins her relationship with Matt, in order to protect him from her.

To see her break down in tears after Matt dumped her immortal butt was truly heartbreaking.  In making this decision, Caroline has performed a truly selfless act, one that not even the Saintly Stefan was capable of accomplishing.  The question is . . . now that she no longer has Matt to keep her on the straight and narrow, where will Caroline find that ever important link to her humanity?

“Hint:  It sure as hell won’t be from ME!”

Vampire Katherine’s arrival in Caroline’s room at the end of the episode, followed by her threatening, yet intriguing pronouncement — “Don’t be frightened.   We are going to have so much fun together!” — certainly didn’t bode well for the future of Vampire Caroline’s soul . . .

The Darker Side of Elena

After a lame-o scene, during which Alaric makes Useless Aunt Jenna his official Lame Ladyfriend, we are returned to the MAIN EVENT . . .

Upon arriving home from Duke University, Damon corners Elena, once again, by the car door.  Their mutually beautiful faces are just inches away from locking lips. 

“Road trips work well for us,” remarks Damon, glibly.  “You know I chipped away at your Wall of Hatred.”

A scene from Damon and Elena’s FIRST road trip.  Ahhh, memories!

Throughout most of the Duke trip, Elena has been trying to get Damon to spill the information he has on Vampire Katherine — information that, hopefully, can help Elena understand why she looks so much like her.  “Friends don’t manipulate friends,” Elena mutters, early on in the trip, when Damon, once again refuses to share.

And yet, at the end of the night, Damon is feeling remarkably generous.  Sensing some softening in Elena’s resolve against him, he tells her that Katherine’s last name was “Petrova,” and hands her a book on the Petrova lineage.  “Men snoop too, you know,” he says slyly.

But then, he becomes serious . . .

“You have every right to hate me.  I understand.  But you hated me before, and we became friends.  It would suck if it was gone forever.  Is it is it gone forever?”

Of course, it’s not gone forever.  I LOVE YOU, you Big Fangy Lug!  Thank you for the book, Damon,” Elena replies, demurely.

And that’s when Elena finally works up the courage to ask Damon directly the question that has been plaguing us all.  “Did you know Jeremy was wearing the ring, when you broke his neck?”

Damon admits that he didn’t.

NOOOOOOOOOOOO!  (I still refuse to believe it.)

Elena tears up at the admission, but thanks Damon for being honest.  “You have lost me forever,” she whispers.

NOOOOOOOO! (I refuse to believe THAT too!)

Now, it is Damon’s turn to be hurt and angered.  “You knew that already.  You used me today.  I thought friends didn’t manipulate friends,” he says, throwing Elena’s own words from earlier in the evening back in her face.

But Damon knows the unspoken response to that too.  Elena was OK with manipulating Damon, because she doesn’t consider him a friend .  . . not anymore.

“You and Katherine have a lot more in common than just your looks,” remarks Damon, before walking away.

She TOTALLY deserved that.

Don’t worry, Damon.  You’ll get her back, eventually.  Sexy television characters, like you, are ALWAYS forgiven for your evils.  So, for now, just go back to La Casa de Rich and Awesome.  Relax.  Pour yourself a drink . . .

or TEN . . .

Be sure to practice your trademark “Eye Thing” in front of the mirror . . .

Tomorrow is another day . . .

[www.juliekushner.com]

 

 

 

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

The Vampire Diaries Newest Villain, Mason Lockwood – Who would YOU cast?

Have you been chomping at the bit (no pun intended) for The Vampire Diaries to return from its already WAY TOO LONG hiatus?  Well, here’s some Season 2 scoopage to tide you over.  Apparently, bloodsucking vampires and witches on a rampage won’t be the only “supernatural problems” Mystic Falls will have to deal with next year.  Now, the not-so-sleepy Virginia town will also have to contend with . . . WEREWOLVES.

If you recall, during the show’s spectacular Season 1 finale episode, “Founders’ Day,” both Tyler Lockwood (played by Michael Trevino) . . .

. . . and his father, the Mayor, exhibited some “wolfy” tendencies, when faced with a “witchy” invention, whose intended purpose was to immobilize supernatural creatures.  Unfortunately, Mayor Lockwood didn’t survive the episode.

But, apparently, this means that his younger, hotter, brother must come to town and step into his shoes, or, perhaps more accurately, his doggie booties . . .

According to Michael Ausiello, over at Entertainment Weekly, the folks down at The Vampire Diaries have recently put out the following casting call:

Mason Lockwood: Described as Tyler’s “cool” uncle, Mason is sexy and athletic and possesses an easygoing charm. Though he has more control than his nephew, he can “flip in an instant” if crossed. Seeking Latin or Caucasian actors in their 30s for this recurring role.

Riiiiight, because that’s EXACTLY what The Vampire Diaries needs . . . MORE HOT MEN THAT LOOK GOOD WITH THEIR SHIRTS OFF (or open) . . .

Blatant male objectification aside, I thought it might be fun for me to try my hand at casting Mason Lockwood.  Here are my top five picks, in no particular order . . .

1) Michael Rosenbaum

Age: 37 (but he turns 38 on July 11th)

Where you’ ve seen him before:  He played Lex Luthor on Smallville.

Why he’d make a good Mason:  Let’s face it, no one does “sexy villian on a teen drama” like Michael Rosenbaum (except, maybe, Ian Somerhalder,  ;)).  Not only is Michael already a familiar face on the CW network, he’s definitely got the acting chops to pull off a “two-natured” (in more ways than one) role like this one.  It also might be nice to seem him in a role where he has HAIR, for a change . . .

2) Milo Ventimiglia

Age: 33 (just turned on July 8th – Happy belated, Milo!  What’s with me picking all these July babies for this role?)

Where you’ve seen him before: He played Peter Petrelli on Heroes and Jesse Mariano on Gilmore Girls.

Why he’d make a good Mason: Like Michael Rosenbaum, Milo is no stranger to the CW network (See Gilmore Girls reference above).  Nor would he be out of his element on a show featuring supernatural elements (See Heroes reference above).  Milo has already proven himself capable of playing a charming and likeable, yet volatile, persona.  He also bears a striking resemblance to Michael Trevino, who would play his nephew on the show.  And did you SEE that body?  Need I say more?

3) Scott Speedman

Age: 34

Where you’ve seen him before:  He played Ben Covington on Felicity, and Michael Corvin in all those Underworld movies.

Why he’d make a good Mason:  I can’t think of better preparation for playing a werewolf on a show featuring vampires and werewolves, than starring in a movie series as a  vampire / werewolf hybrid.  Can you?  Unlike Michael and Milo, Scott never starred on the CW, but he DID star on its predecessor channel, the WB, during his Felicity years.  Through Scott’s previous roles, he has definitely shown that he has enough innate masculinity and barely suppressed rage to fit in with the Lockwood clan.  And that uniquely raspy voice of his?  Pure sex . . .

4) Paul Walker

Age: 36

Where you’ve seen him before: Those Fast and Furious movies

Why he’d make a good Mason:  I’m not gonna lie.  I chose Paul almost exclusively for his beauty . . . and his body . . . and because Kerr Smith and Benjamin McKenzie are both already tied up with other television shows.  What can I say?  I’m only human!

5) Jesse Metcalfe

Age: 31

Where you’ve seen him before: He played that hot lawnmower dude, John, who got it on with Eva Langoria on Desperate Housewives.  He also played the title role in John Tucker Must Die.  (Too bad this character isn’t named “John.”  Because Jesse would have had the role in the bag.)

Why he’d make a good Mason:  Like Milo, I think Jesse kind of looks like Michael Trevino, which would weigh in his favor, for a part like this.  Plus, if these werewolves are anything like the werewolves in the Twilight series, they are going to have to be shirtless A LOT.  Clearly, this will be NO problem for Jesse.  On a more serious (and slightly selfish) note, Jesse Metcalfe is a very talented actor, and I’d really like to see him on my small screen again. 

 (Note:  When I was researching this post, I learned that Jesse Metcalfe is actually set to star in a new Jerry Bruckheimer-produced NBC pilot this fall, entitled ChaseBut everyone knows that most pilots don’t actually get picked up by the networks.  So as far as I am concerned, he’s still in the running  😉 . . .)

So, those are my picks.   Who would YOU cast as Mason Lockwood?

[ Season 2 of the Vampire Diaries premieres Thursday, September 9th at 8 p.m. on the CW Network. ]

P.S.  Apparently, less than 24-hours after I wrote this blog post, the producers over at The Vampire Diaries released their ACTUAL casting choice for Mason Lockwood.  (Special thanks to Amy, over at the always entertaining and fabulously fangirly imaginarymen blog, and first commenter Ellen O., for the late-breaking scoop!)  And the winner is . . . THIS GUY . . .

Taylor Kinney, who was best known for his role as EMT Glenn Morris on the NBC drama Trauma.  (Hey, that rhymes!)  And, just in case you were curious, here’s what he looks like without his shirt on . . .

Welcome to Fangirl Land, Mr. Kinney!  Prepare to be shamelessly objectified!

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Filed under casting, Spoilers and Sneak Peaks, The Vampire Diaries

Dr. Bloodsucking Psychopath and Mr. Congeniality – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries “Miss Mystic Falls”

It’s official.  The Vampire Diaries has become my FAVORITE show of this season!  VD continues to amaze and shock me each week, with its sharp writing, solid acting, and unpredictable plot twists (the latter being kind of a big deal for me, because I tend to predict EVERYTHING!)  Not to mention, the writers of The Vampire Diaries continue to dream up new and inventive ways to show off Paul Wesley’s insanely hot arms and Ian Somerhalder’s insanely hot face!

All right, enough of this gushy stuff!  After all, “Miss Mystic Falls” was probably the LEAST warm and fuzzy episode of the entire season!  When promos for the episode suggested the exposure of Stefan’s dark side, they weren’t kidding!  The heretofore “kindler, gentler” Salvatore wasn’t just dark this week, he was downright terrifying!

Kudos to Paul Wesley for genuinely scaring the stuffing out of me tonight.  This guy made Norman Bates look like Mister Rodgers  . . .

So, without further adieu, what do you say, we stop gabbing and BITE into this awesome episode?

A Long Time Ago, We Used to Be Friends . . .

The opening moments of “Miss Mystic Falls” were filled with awkward exchanges and a generalized sentiment of mistrust.  First there was Vampire Anna . . .

 . . . who visited Damon on the pretense of apologizing for the whole “Stefan getting chained up and tortured, two weeks ago” thing.  But really, the whole purpose of the exchange, I THINK, was to let us viewers know that the writers have decided to scrap the whole Hidey Hole Vampires storyline.  (Good Call, VD!)  Anna explains that MOST of the aforementioned vamps skipped down last week, and therefore, could not have been responsible for the recent “blood bank” robbery that is now rocking Mystic Falls.  Damon sees Anna’s speech as the plot device it clearly is, and refuses to accept her apology. YOU GO, BOY!

Dear BFF Elena,

The good news is, I’m back.  The bad news is, I’ve decided to hate your guts . . .

Hugs and kisses!

Bonnie

Back at school, Bonnie, who has been largely MIA of late, runs into Elena in the parking lot.  These two haven’t seen one another since that time when Elena got Bonnie and her Granny to do that spell to seal up the Hidey Hole Vampire Tomb, the performance of which actually ended up killing Poor Granny.  Oh yeah, and it didn’t even work!  The vampires ended up escaping the tomb, anyway.  Insensitive Elena apparently decided to inform Bonnie of this fact, just days after she had to bury her own grandmother!

“What?  Who WOULDN’T want to know that their favorite relative had to die to further along a failed plotline?”

Given all that, I can’t really blame Bonnie for being icy to Elena, or for hating on the Salvatore brothers for the role they played in Granny’s demise.  I CAN, however, blame her for those weird bangs she was rocking during this episode.  Not cute!  Fortunately, for the girls, Caroline . . .

 . . . interrupts this love fest, to inform Elena that both she and Caroline are part of the Mystic Falls Founder’s Day Court, and are to compete in the “Miss Mystic Falls” pageant this year.  Elena had completely forgotten about the event, having only signed up for it to please her now-dead adoptive Mommy.

Meanwhile, Creepy Uncle John . . .

 . . . blackmails Damon.  Telling him that he will expose the Salvatore brothers as vampires UNLESS Damon agrees to help Creepy Uncle John find some weird ” invention” that a vampire stole from his ancestor, back during Civil War times.  Who stole the “invention,” you ask?  Vampire Pearl, of course!

As if poor Damon wasn’t having a crappy enough day, he returns home to find Stefan (despite his claims of being clean) leaning ravenously over an entire freezer, filled with blood stolen from the local blood bank!  Not cool!  Stefan, of course, promises Damon that he has everything “under control.”  However, when Elena calls to ask him to act as her escort for the pageant, he blatantly lies to her about his “drinking” — a very un-Stefan like thing to do.  Later, at school, Stefan comes very close to eating a teen with a bloody knee, and even attacks Alaric . . .

 . . . when the latter accidentally gets in his way.

The Thrill of Almost Touching, The Agony of Almost Eating . . .

Moments before the Mystic Falls pageant is set to begin, Damon, who has become convinced that Stefan’s new addiction will put them all at risk, informs Elena that Stefan is still consuming human blood.  When Stefan arrives on the scene, Elena confronts him about his lies.  Stefan responds by getting all pissy and wall-punchy . . . He then runs away, like a little bitch, leaving Elena to fend for herself during the pageant ceremonies . . .

“So, I’ve been behaving like a TOTAL ASS throughout this entire episode.  So, what?   I still look super sexy with my shirt off.  And NO ONE can take that away from me!”

When it comes time for Elena to be escorted at the pageant, Damon jumps in at the last minute to be her Knight and Shining Vampire.  And even though we all knew that this was going to happen, from watching the previews, I’m quite certain that the entire female VD watching population SQUEALED with joy when he appeared at the end of that staircase. 

Stefan’s bad behavior these past few episodes, has only further illustrated how much of a better match Damon is for Elena.  Need more proof?  Just check out the sultry and longing looks these two give one another during the “first dance” A.K.A “the prey circling, animal mating ritual.”  When Elena performs this “ritual” with Stefan during rehearsals, it seems stiff and awkward.  With Damon, it is PURE SEX!

“What?  Did you think I WASN’T going to find some excuse to include this picture in my recap AGAIN?  You clearly don’t know me at all . . .”

Despite all this sexiness, Elena actually DIDN’T become Miss Mystic Falls.  Caroline did .  . .

 . . . which was nice, because she CLEARLY wanted it so much more than Elena did.  However, it makes me worried for her, because Elena usually beats her at everything

Have you ever had someone who was always really nasty to you, and then, all the sudden, they started acting really nice?  So, you figured you must be DYING of some disease you didn’t know about, because that would be the ONLY way to rationally explain this person’s sudden change in behavior?   This is kind of how I think Caroline should feel about the world . . .  Seeing as VD is set to have two additional major deaths prior to the conclusion of Season 1, if I were Caroline, I would be getting myself on that All-Vervain diet, STAT!

Back in Whiny Bitch Land, Hungry Stefan is still brooding over his recent fight with Elena, when he encounters, pageant contestant, Amber, innocently catching some air.  Stefan forcefully drags Amber into the woods with him.  He then compels her to stand still and act blissfully calm, as he describes, emotionlessly, and in graphic detail, his overwhelming desire to rip her neck open and devour her whole .  . . 

Awww!  How Sweet!

 . . . and I’m thinking, “This is Stefan!  He’s not ACTUALLY going to bite her.” 

Stefan then compels Amber to run, and she does.  And I think, “Phew!”

But then . . . Stefan does his fast Running Man Vampire thing, and HE BITES HER!  Not just a little, either.  Stefan bites Amber right on her carotid artery.  You know . . . that part of your neck, which, if it bleeds, makes you . . . like . . . DIE . . . and stuff.  Fortunately, it’s DAMON TO THE RESCUE!

UNFORTUNATELY, Stefan throws Damon INTO A TREE and KNOCKS HIM OUT!  But then Bonnie appears, out of no where, and does that creepy, possessed, eyes-rolled-back in her head thing, she likes to do, every once in a while, on this show.  Suddenly, Stefan gets this really bad headache (from looking at Bonnie’s bad bangs?).  So, he lets go of Amber, in search of some Vampire-Sized Advil . . .

Later that evening, Stefan and Elena fight over his addiction, and Stefan THROWS ELENA AGAINST A WALL!  Elena hugs Stefan, telling him that everything is going to be all right. And, just when I’m thinking I’ve walked in on a “Bad After-School Special About an Abusive Relationships” . . .

 . . .Elena STABS STEFAN IN THE BACK!!!!! 

Then Damon magically appears. 

He helps Elena carry an unconscious, and, slightly evil, Stefan (who, I hate to say it, STILL looks kind of sexy, wearing that now, appropriately-titled, “wife beater”) . . .

 . . . into a sort of “holding pen,” where they will undoubtedly attempt to force him into Human Blood Withdrawal.  (Poor Stefan!  Always tied up or incarcerated, it seems . . . both in the books and on TV).  Damon offers to take Elena home, but she refuses.  In the final moments of the episode, the pair sit together in silence, forced to endure the suffering of the man they both love . . .

In Other News . . .

1) Jeremy reconnected with Anna (and, like Bonnie, got a kind of sucky-looking 90’s era haircut . . )

2) Pearl and Damon teamed up against Creepy Uncle John (hereinafter “CUJ”).  To cement their bond, Pearl handed over to Damon the “invention”  CUJ was looking for.  Surprise, surprise!   It appears to be YET ANOTHER magical piece of jewelry . . . The only difference here, is that no one has any clue what this one is actually supposed to DO!

That’s all for now, VDers!  Tune in next week, when Elena and Damon become overwhelmed with passion for one another and start making out hardcore on the staircase of the Salvatore home. 

OK, OK, I’m lying . . . for NOW . . . but IT’S COMING.  I CAN FEEL IT!

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Another Bloody 12-Step Program – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries “Under Control”

“Dude, I am NEVER DRINKING AGAIN!  The last thing I remember is going into a tattoo parlor and asking for some pegasus wings on my back . . . OH CRAP!  REAL WINGS!  How the f&*k did these get here?  Damon’s NEVER going to let me live this one down . . .”

Tonight’s installment of The Vampire Diaries featured an in-town party,

LOTS of booze,

SOME making out,

SOME brawling,

and a heaping helping of Julie Cooper-Nichol Melinda Clarke.

In short, it reminded me A LOT of this OTHER show I used to watch . . .

“Welcome to The VD, BITCH!”

Let’s take a closer look, shall we?

The Things We Cannot Change . . .

When we last left Stefan, he found himself hooked on . . .

 . . . having tasted his girlfriend, Elena’s, during a particularly weak moment.  When we see Stefan, this week, he is struggling to quit the stuff cold turkey.  His brilliant plan for achieving this goal?  LOTS of sweaty pull-ups  . . . which, again, I think, was only included in the episode, so that we got the opportunity to see Paul Wesley look like this . . .

 . . . and AGAIN, I’m OK with that!

Unfortunately, for Stefan, his brother, Damon, is a TOTAL enabler . . .

 . . . and SMOKIN’ HOT (just saying).  So, Damon, who is a pretty big blood drinker himself, continues to randomly leave vials and glasses of the “red stuff” all around the mansion, where these two dapper drinkers currently reside.  “Why can’t you just get blood from a blood bank, like the rest of us?”  Damon inquires.

Now THIS development is very interesting to me . . . You see, I was always under the impression, that while Damon occasionally imbibed a “soccer mom” or two from vials of blood stolen from a hospital or blood bank, human skin was his “glass” of choice.  Perhaps, I always assumed this, because many scenes in The Vampire Diaries book series, featured a super sexy Damon compelling a young innocent lass to offer up her body for feeding.  The act of “drinking” these females was always overtly sexual.  And Book Damon, to his credit, always left the bitten ladies in bed asleep, with no memory of the event, except for some VERY SWEET DREAMS!

Truthfully, this has ALWAYS been a fantasy of mine!  And I was more than a bit disappointed when Damon admitted he hadn’t “had a human in years.”  It also raises an interesting point.  If Damon and the other vamps, drinks solely from blood banks, and Stefan repeatedly goes out into the woods to eat Bambi’s mother . . .

 . . . and other assorted forest creatures, heretofore alive and well, wouldn’t that make Stefan more of a killer than his brother? 

Also, we noticed, throughout the episode, how DANGEROUS Stefan’s newfound cravings for human blood were causing him to become.  EVERYONE suddenly became a target .  . . even Elena.  Given that, wouldn’t Stefan’s imbibing of blood bank blood make him less harmful to the people he cared about, not more?  The only possible explanation I could think of as to why we should be rooting AGAINST Stefan becoming a HUMAN blood sucker, is that his LOOOOONG absense from the stuff, has made him . . .

 . . . in terms of blood drinking, almost as if he was a NEWBORN vampire once again.  And we learned, from Vicki Donovan a few episodes ago, just how DANGEROUS those newbies could be . . .

“Oh, BITE ME!  On second thought, let me BITE YOU . . . HARD!”

Most of the episode’s A-storyline featured Stefan trying to get a handle on his blood drinking by getting as wasted as possible on alcohol!

Somewhere underground, the creator of the 12-Step Program is rolling over in his grave.  Unless of course, HE is a vampire too!  If so, he probably doesn’t mind as much . . .

The result of all this DRINKING, is that Stefan, as Damon says, becomes sort of “fun,” for a change.  He compels the D.J. at the party to switch from the snoozy orchestral music he is playing, to the song Falling by Phoenix (which you may have recognized as the song from those cadillac commercials . . .)

Don’t get me wrong, this is a good song, and all.  But I, personally, think it would have been WAY FUNNIER if Stefan “requested” that the DJ play a song by Vampire Weekend.

The song, “A Punk,” for example, would have been FABULOUS for this venue . . .

All the while, Stefan was telling Elena and Damon he had things “under control.”  However, we could tell that this wasn’t the case at all when he (1) got all veiny, wrinkled, and puffy eye baggy, when things got hot and heavy with Elena in her bedroom; and (2) twice almost killed that random dude for having the NERVE to knock into and be rude to Elena at the party (which was kind of hot, I have to admit).  But “rock bottom” for our pal Stefan had to be when Julie Cooper Nichol Matt’s Slutty Mom . . .

 . . . got a massive cut on her head.  In a move that was both incredibly creepy, and intensely sexy, at the same time, Stefan placed his hand gently on Julie Cooper Nichol’s Matt’s Slutty Mom’s wound, rubbed it with his fingers, and then proceeded to amorously lick his hand like a VERY DIRTY cat.

“Mmmmmm . . . Julie Cooper Nichol Matt’s Slutty Mom Guts . . . DELICIOUS!”

At the end of the episode, Stefan gives in to temptation, chugging down a blood-filled tumbler that his brother strategically left on the bar for him.  And again — I have to ask — is this necessarily a bad thing?

The Senseless Death That Was Neither Particularly Senseless, Nor Deadly .  . .

So, at the beginning of the episode, this guy shows up at Elena’s doorstep, and I IMMEDIATELY don’t like him, because he walks with his hands clasped between his legs, like a VERY MEAN AND SCARY principal I used to have in elementary school (RIP Princi  – PAL).  Apparently, this guy is Uncle John Gilbert — a man who once slept with . . .

Aunt Jenna, and MAY have slept with . . .

Elena’s biological mom, Isabel.  WOAH!  What are you telling me, VD?   Elena’s UNCLE did the deed with both Elena’s AUNT and Elena’s MOM?

Incest much?  It took me a few takes to remember that Aunt Jenna is the sister of Elena’s adoptive mom, Uncle John is Elena’s adoptive dad’s brother, and NONE of these people are at all related to Elena’s biological mom!  This makes the whole situation less gross . . . but only slightly.  It still strikes me as a bit “too close for comfort,” if you know what I mean . . .

Anyway, Uncle John immediately starts making trouble in Mystic Falls.  First, he threatens to take Elena’s deceased father’s office, which Elena and Jeremy inherited in their parents’ will, away from them.  THEN he reveals to the town council that a bunch of blood banks are reporting stolen vials of blood and missing employees, prospectively exposing all the vampires in Mystic Falls, not to mention cutting off their nutrition supply.  Uncle John then reveals to Damon that he knows EVERYTHING about the Salvatore brothers, including that they are vampires, and that they were responsible for opening the underground tomb containing Mama Pearl . . .

 . . . and the other Hidey Hole Vamps.  Damon takes quick action, like the Rambo Bad Ass, he is!

Our Main Man breaks Uncle John’s neck and tosses him off the balcony, before I could even utter the word “Douchebag.”  And I must admit, I CHEERED LIKE A SCHOOLGIRL, when it happened (maybe it was all those principal memories, getting the best of me).  “UNCLE JOHN, it gives me GREAT PLEASURE to bestow upon you the SENSELESS DEATH AWARD!”  I literally said, out loud, as I watched the scene.

 So, as you can imagine, I was just and confused and PISSED as Damon, when Uncle John showed back up at the party, alive and unharmed . . .

“He’s BAAACK!”

As it turns out, Uncle John was conveniently wearing that Can’t Be Killed Ring, also owned by Snoozy Alaric . . .

 . . . who, I must admit, I ENJOYED for the second week in a row, as he continued his awesome post-face punch Bromance with Hot Vamp Damon.

Apparently, like Alaric, Uncle John got the ring from Elena’s Surprisingly Slutty Biological Mom!

Uncle John also claims that HE was the one who sent Elena’s Slutty Mom to Damon, when she wanted to be turned into a vampire.  I’m not quite sure I believe him yet?  But, unfortunately, we will probably find out the truth in future episodes, as this AWFUL DUDE seems like he will be sticking around for a while.  Uncle John already kind of reminds me of a side-character from another show, who I DESPISED, but who never EVER seemed to LEAVE!

Marilyn from Big Love, anyone?

In other news . . .

Vampjer FINALLY Gets a Clue!

If you recall, newly-turned vampire Vicki was STAKED by Stefan, because she tried to kill Elena in a vampiric rage, while the lovelorn Jeremy watched in horror.  At Elena’s request, Damon compelled Jeremy to forget the entire traumatic experience, and believe Vicki had simply run away from home.  And that WAS what he believed — for a while, at least — until he developed a strange fascination with vampires, cultivated by, none other than his SORT-OF Gal Friday, Vampire Anna.

When Vicki was found buried in the forest, the coroner called her death a drug overdose.  “But then why was she buried?  Who buried her?”  Jeremy inquires, and rightly so.

The town council stonewalls Jeremy, when he inquires into the odd circumstances surrounding Vicki’s demise.  Even his sister, Elena, basically tells him to “let it go.”  At the end of the episode, a suspicious Jeremy breaks into Elena’s bedroom and finds her diary.  In it, he reads the whole Bloody Story.  And he is PISSED!

Also . . .

Drunk and Slutty IS as Drunk and Slutty DOES . . .

Still vulnerable from her daughter’s untimely demise, Julie Cooper Nichol Matt’s Slutty Mom gets wasted at the Founder’s Day Kickoff Party, and makes out with her son’s friend, Tyler.

“I totally POKED – HER!”

When Matt . . .

 . . . finds Tyler and his mom en flagrante, he freaks out, and moves to punch Tyler in the face.  But then, Tyler goes all rabid animal crazy on the poor guy’s ass!  And if you’ve read the books, or seen the spoilers, you know why.  Tyler’s dad slaps Tyler in the face HARD for losing his cool — making me feel bad for D-Bag Tyler, for the first time, since he’s been on this show.  And you just KNOW this isn’t the last we will see of THIS storyline . . .

Also, Matt kicks his Slutty Mom out of the house.  But something tells me, that ultimatum is not going to stick . . .

Well, that’s all I’ve got folks!  Tune in next week, when it appears that Sexy Damon (not Stefan) will be escorting Elena to the Founder’s Day Ball.  Let the sexually tense moments and sexual innuendos BEGIN!  Until then . . .

Sayonara, fellow Blood Suckers!

 

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