Tag Archives: unrequited love

To Fluffer or Not to Fluff Her – What your favorite TV characters can teach you about unrequited love . . .

[Don’t worry, my fellow Fangbangers / Upper East Siders.  I haven’t forgotten about you!  I know I’ve been a bit remiss in my blogging recently, due to some real-life issues I’ve been facing.  But I’m BACK now.  You can expect a recap of The TVD season premiere “Growing Pains,” and a GG-related post, hopefully within the next 24 hours.  Thanks for your patience!]

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Not getting any lovin’ from that special someone in your life?  Nick Miller feels your pain . . .

“You’re an emotional fluffer,” the eternally wise Winston warned his perpetually unlucky-in-love loft mate, Nick on this week’s episode of New Girl, which was aptly titled “Fluffer.”

For those of you who don’t know what a fluffer is (or for those of you who are pretending not to know what a fluffer is, because you don’t want anyone to know you actually watch porn . . .) . . .

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A “fluffer” is someone whose job it is to keep porn stars “happy” prior to their . . . um . . . cinematic performances . . .

And by “happy” I mean HAPPY . . .

SO, what exactly does this have to do with Jess and Nick, you might be asking yourself if you didn’t see the episode.  WHY DIDN’T YOU WATCH THE EPISODE DAMMIT?  IT WAS A GOOD EPISODE!  GET OFF THE INTERNET AND WATCH IT NOW, YOU LAZY BUM?

Hmmm . . . let’s think about this for a second.  In what ways have we seen Nick fluff Jess . . .

Actually, the answer is a bit more abstract than that.  You see, according to Winston, Jess gets the emotional perks of coupledom from Nick, which , in turn, her up mentally, to BONE This Guy . . .

. . . and That Guy . . .

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And pretty much every other male guest star on this show . . .

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. . . which is great for Jess . . .

But, perhaps, not so great for Nick . . .

Porn analogies aside, Nick’s conundrum actually prompts viewers to, once again, consider that age-old question: Can men and women (particularly single men and women) be friends, or will sexual tension and unrequited feelings of lust / love on the part of one or both of the parties inevitably taint the “purity” of the platonic relationship?

In the case of Jess and Nick, the question was  . . . at least for the time being . . . decided in the affirmative.  With the help of some super sexy squabbling . . .

. . . a not-particularly-easy-to-assemble piece of furniture from IKEA . . .

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. . . and a rocking Nick Miller mix tape that contained the SHEER AWESOMENESS that is This Song . . .

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. . . our two adorkable loft mates ultimately concluded that, provided that they set some boundaries in their relationship (NO MORE FLUFFING!), Jess and Nick could, and should, remain friends, despite the fact that they both constantly dream about f*&king one another senseless .  . .

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. . . admit to being more than a little bit attracted to one another . . .

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Of course, the question remains: How long can these two keep up the pretense of platonic friendship, before their baser instincts take over, and good ole horny human nature is allowed to run its course?

Because if Harry and Sally are any indication it could take them anywhere from two days . . .

. . . to TWELVE YEARS . . .

Of course, Nick and Jess weren’t the only TV characters suffering from the slings and blue balls arrows of friendship-without-the-benefits this week.  Get a load of Mulan . . .

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Talk about a hardcore fluffer!  I mean, this chick spent 28 years helping the guy she was head over heels in love with slay dragons and conquer evil, just so that she could watch him wake up his narcoleptic girlfriend, and engage in some nauseatingly overzealous PDA with her . .

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Then, as if that wasn’t bad enough, this happened . . .

Let that be a lesson to you unrequited lusters out there!  If you happen to be one of those people who’s secretly in love with your best friend, you MUST tell him (or her) how you feel, ASAP.  I mean, sure, it might ruin your friendship.  But, hey, you never know when a Dementor from the Harry Potter movies is going to come and eat the face off of the maybe-love of your life, thereby ruining every chance you ever had at happiness . . . FOREVER!

Of course, Mulan wasn’t the only TV warrior princess forced to “fluff” from the sidelines this week, while someone else reaped her sexual rewards . . . Care for a little Revenge with your emotional fluffery?  I thought you might . . .

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You’ve met Emily Thorne, right?  You know, the girl who’s real name is actually Amanda Clarke.  But she is pretending to be Emily Thorne, in order to wreak vengeance upon the Evil Rich People who played a role in the untimely death of her father, David Clarke?

And if you’ve met Emily, then you’ve probably also met Faux-Manda, the girl who switched identities with the real Amanda Clarke, in juvie, and did a brief stint as a murderess stripper . . .

. . .  before totally Single White Female-ing Emily / Amanda, i.e. stealing her wholesome bartender boyfriend right out from under her,  by pretending that she’s actually Amanda Clarke . . .the chick he hung out with back when he was eight.

. . .  because that’s not creepy at all . . .

Confused?

It gets worse.  Not only did Faux-Manda steal Jack, the Blue Collar Bundle of Beer-Stained Joy, right out from under Real-Manda / Faux Emily (F-emily?) ‘s nose, she also somehow managed to convince him that she’s carrying his floppy haired, future bar mop- slinging spawn.

Insert coin, eject Meal Ticket . . .

So, while our hero, Emily is busy cooking Bartender Dude dinner, giving him longing looks across the beach, and helping him bury his dead dog . . .

R.I.P. Sammy, the almost, but not quite, immortal dog . . .

Faux-Manda gets to bump uglies with him on a regular basis, dance on top of his bar, sleep in his bed, and carry what might very well be (though we are still doubtful) his toastie townie bun in her oven.  Talk about UNFAIR!

This, of course, raises another rather interesting question about the duties unrequited lovers have toward the objects of their affection.  Is it slightly out of line / a wee-bit opportunistic to tell your pal / wanna-be lover that his or her current significant other is a lowlife / skank?

On one hand, this might be overstepping your bounds as “friend / fluffer.”  Plus, there’s always the chance that your buddy crush might get offended by your accusations, and end up, as they say, shooting the messenger.

And, if you happen to be Emily Thorne, there’s that whole “that b*tch can totally blow my cover / ruin my REVENGE” thing with which to contend as well . . .

And yet, lets not forget the possibility that, if we don’t speak out, our loved ones might very well end up gettin their FACES SUCKED OFF off by the Dementor from Harry Potter . . .

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Now, she tells me!

So, yeah, love can be tough.  And being a fluffer can be even tougher.  But rest assured, unrequited lovers, sometimes the nice guy and girl really do get to finish first.

Harry and Sally, Pacey and Joey, Seth and Summer . . . they all eventually got their happy ending.  Your time will come too, you  Fluffer Nutter, you!

Because even if the girl or guy of your dreams is currently involved with someone else, there’s always the chance that they could break up . . . which brings me to this week’s episode of Glee . . .

But that, my friends, is a story for another post . . .

Until next time . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under New Girl, Once Upon a Time, Revenge

“I Prefer MY Men Dark, Broody, and a Little Bit Evil.”. . . My Picks for TV’s Top Ten Brooding Bad Boys

 

What good girl doesn’t secretly want a bad boy by her side to rescue her from the monotony of a life spent being well-behaved?  Now, in the real world, dating a guy like this is the quickest way to a broken heart — if you’re lucky — and a black eye, the slammer or the morgue — if you’re not.  But in TV land, the girls who win the hearts of the baddest baddies fare quite well, actually (not to mention have the best sex lives)! 

 For girls like me, who are desperate to experience the thrills of the darkside, without any of the risks or guilt attached, TV Brooding Bad Boys are our salvation.    And because I am so grateful to these fictional bad asses, who’s mere existence has managed to keep me on the straight and narrow all these years, I have decided to pay tribute to some of the best ones in this post . . . 10 to be exact.  (They are in no particular order. although I may have saved the best for last.  After all, playing favorites with bad boys is the surest way to get burned . . . literally.)

1) Don Draper – Executive Bad Boy

TV Show: Man Men

Who plays him?  Jon Hamm

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Let’s see.  He accidentally killed the REAL Don Draper, and then stole his identity.  Now, he smokes and drinks like a fish (and usually drives afterward).  He also cheats on his (soon-to-be ex) wife . . . ALOT, sometimes with married women, sometimes with coworkers and/or his kids’ teachers, and sometimes with random flight attendants he meets on business trips.

Why he’s broody?   On occasion, Don actually feels guilty about all the sleeping around he does (It’s rare, but it happens).  He also had a miserable childhood, with a drunken dad who abused him mentally and physically, and a prostitute biological mom who named him after a private part.  To top things off, Don’s wife can be a real cold b*tch sometimes.  And despite being model gorgeous, she actually strikes me as a kind of snoozy lay.

Why we love him anyway?  Don Draper is nothing, if not flawed.  But he is also a brilliant ad man, with a keen sense of business acumen.  When he wants to be, Don is actually a pretty great dad to his kids.  But Don’s “parenting” goes beyond the walls of his home.  The advertising executive’s paternal nature extends to his younger colleagues, particularly Peggy Olson, whose ambition and intellect he encourages, and whose career got a jump start, thanks to his willingness to put his own job on the line for her.

2) James “Sawyer” Ford – Castaway Con Artist Bad Boy

TV Show: Lost

Who plays him?  Josh Holloway

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Sawyer made his living as a con man who bilked little old ladies out of their pension checks, and slightly younger ladies out of their inheritances and hard-earned dough.  On the island, he initially kept to himself (aside from the occasional fist fight).  Left to his own devices, he survived by hoarding his fellow castaways possessions (including some very pricey drugs, and quite an impressive weapons stash).  He also used Shannon’s painful and highly traumatic asthma attack as an excuse to get Kate to kiss him for the first time.  It was hot, but kind of heartless too . . .

Why he’s broody?  Like Don Draper, Sawyer had a pretty f-ed up childhood.  When Sawyer was a little kid, a con man bilked his parents out of their life savings.  Sawyer’s father became so depressed as a result, that he killed Sawyer’s mother before turning the gun on himself.  To make matters worse, Sawyer is stranded on a deserted island where he is constantly fending off the unwelcome advances of Polar Bears, sadistic birds, black smoke, and those wackadoo Others.  Oh, and did I mention the object of his desires keeps ditching him to make out with this lame ass pompous doctor?  You’d be pretty pissed off too . . . I bet!

Why we love him anyway?  Sawyer may be a con artist, and a thief . . . and he sure likes to beat the sh&t out of people!  But he looks GREAT with his shirt off!

As the seasons of Lost progressed, Sawyer also proved himself to be an excellent leader, and a staunch protector of those he loved, most notably, Kate, Juliette, and, yes, even Hurley.  He even stopped beating people up so much.  (Well, at least he was more selective about it.)  Oh, and the nicknames!  I loved all those nicknames!

3) Noah “Puck” Puckerman – Mohawk-Wearing Bully Bad Boy

TV Show: Glee

Who plays him?  Mark Salling

Why he’s a Bad Boy?   At the start of the show, Puck was your basic jock bully (with a mohawk, of course).  He LOVED tossing slushees in the faces of the Glee kids, and tossing nerds in the dumpster.  He also got it on with a quite a few of his mom’s friends.  But Puck’s worst offense, by far was screwing “Celibacy Club President Quinn,” while she was dating his friend.  He also kept their rendezvous a secret, even after Quinn became pregnant, and Finn agreed to take responsibility for Puck’s baby . . .

Why he’s broody?  You know, I could explain it to you.  However this video says it better, than I ever could . . .

Why we love him anyway?  Ummm . . . did you WATCH that video?  Did it not make you fall in love with Puck, and make you want to give birth to all of  his mohawk-wearing babies?  By the end of Season 1, Puck came a long way toward redeeming himself.  Not only did he stop throwing nerds into dumpsters, he also became really close with the Glee kids, most notably Rachel and Mercedes.  And when it came down to it, Puck really stood by Quinn, and supported her throughout her pregnancy, even going so far as to stand by her side, as she gave birth.  Now if that’s not a Redeemed Brooding Bad Boy, I don’t know what is!

4) Chuck Bass – Upper East Side Bad Boy

TV Show: Gossip Girl

Who plays him?  Ed Westwick

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Oh, Chuck!  How are you a bad boy?  Let me count the ways.  Before you met Blair Waldorf, you bedded so many random women, that you made Don Draper, Sawyer, and Puck look like priests. 

You tried to date rape Jenny Humphrey in the pilot episode (an incident we ALL wanted to forget about, and almost did, until you repeated the feat during the Season 3 finale.)  Along with Blair Waldorf and the rest of your Scooby gang, you have schemed (and succeeded) to ruin the lives of MANY of Manhattan’s elite, sometimes even those in your own social circle.  And you’ve callously broken Blair’s heart a few more times than us fans would have liked . . .

Why he’s broody?  Despite being born into privilege, Chuck hasn’t had the easiest life.  His mother died giving birth to him (or so he thought).  And Chuck’s father blamed him for his mother’s absence all his life, constantly denigrating the young man’s worth and ability.  Then his father died, which always sucks. 

On the romantic side of things, particularly in the earlier episodes, Chuck constantly found his love for Blair unrequited or blatantly ignored.  And once he FINALLY got her, Chuck had to keep screwing things up.  So  he lost her, over and over again, due to his own insecurities, hubris, and fragile ego.

Why we love him anyway?  He’s Chuck Bass!  The only man who can refer to himself in the third person constantly, without it ever becoming annoying.  And as cold and callous as he may sometimes seem, Chuck LOVES Blair, possibly more than any television character has ever loved another.  He loves her unconditionally, despite her flaws and idiosyncrasies.  Chuck is always willing to sacrifice his own happiness for Blair’s, as he does in this adorable scene.

(Click the internal link to watch.)

5) Ryan Atwood – “Bad Boy from the Wrong Side of the Tracks”

TV Show: The O.C.

Who plays him?  Benjamin McKenzie

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Ryan hails from Chino.  Based on what the show’s writers would have you believe, growing up in Chino makes you automatically bad news.  During the pilot episode of the show, Ryan got himself involved in a teensy bit of grand theft auto.  (It wasn’t really his fault, but still . . . .).

  Oh, and believe it or not, Ryan likes to beat the sh&t out of people EVEN MORE than Puck and Sawyer!  In fact, I’m pretty sure he did it at least once during every single  episode of The O.C!  If I recall, toward the end of the show’s run, he even got into cage fighting for a while, so that he could get PAID to beat the sh*t out of people.  Smart business move, Ryan!

Why is he broody?  NOBODY does broody like Ryan Atwood!  Don’t believe me?  Check out this clip from the show’s pilot episode . . .

This guy is the epitome of the strong, silent and ANGRY type.  And with good reason!  Growing up poor with an absentee father, a drunk mother, and a delinquent brother, Ryan didn’t have many opportunities growing up.  At least, that is, until saintly public defender, Sandy Cohen, took him into his home and under his wing . . .

Why we love him anyway?  Grand theft auto and butt-kicking notwithstanding, let’s face it, for a bad boy Ryan wasn’t .  . . all that bad.  He was sweet and protective of his friends, particularly Seth and Marissa, the latter of whom he got out of more jams than I can even count.  He also had this staunch code of honor and integrity, that he never seemed to waver from, no matter how far he got from his Chino roots. 

Sure, Ryan could be a little stiff and quiet at times . . . . OK .  . . most of the time.  But every once and a while, he would let loose and show his sweet side.  And when that happened, no heart was safe . . .

6) Alex Karev – Dr. McBad Boy

TV Show: Grey’s Anatomy

Who plays him?   Justin Chambers

What makes him a Bad Boy?  OK.  I’m not going to lie.  A lot of times Alex Karev can be kind of a dick, both literally and figuratively.  There was that one time, when he posted all those pictures of Izzie in her undergarments all over the hospital.  And that other time when he unwittingly gave George syphilis, by sleeping with the nurse he had a thing for.  Giving of STD aside, Alex was kind of mean to George in general.  He was always calling him names and denigrating his manhood, whenever he got the chance. 

Oh, and Alex cheated on Izzie . . . like A LOT!

Why he’s broody?  Alex had an abusive father, who beat the crap out of him regularly.  (Anyone else noticing a pattern here?)  He also has really bad luck with the ladies.  His girlfriend Rebecca went all crazy and bipolar on his ass.  The other love of his life, Izzie, cheated on him with a ghost (Oh, I am serious!).  She also got cancer . . . and he married her, thinking she was dying.   But then she went into remission . . . and then she inexplicably dumped his ass.  I think Alex has a right to be a little pissed off at the world?  Don’t you?

Why we love him anyway?  Alex is a fighter.  He speaks his mind, and tells the truth, when no one else has the guts to do it.  Plus, he’s an amazing doctor, who has a fabulous way with kids and teens, in particular.  Unlike some of the other doctors at the hospital, Alex speaks their language, and doesn’t talk down to them.  For that reason, they often trust and respect him.  And for a D-bag, he can be surprisingly sweet and romantic, as illustrated here . . .

7) Eric Northman – Immortal Viking Bad Boy

TV Show: True Blood

Who plays him?  Alexander Skarsgard

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Eric is a very old, and very powerful vampire, who always gets what he wants.  To him, humans are food to be consumed, and toys to be used for his amusement.  Eric is currently involved in the shady and underground business of selling highly addictive vampire blood to humans and other assorted creatures.  He’s betrayed his colleague Bill more times than I can count, in order to get what he wants.  He kidnapped Lafayette and beat him into submission, until the latter agreed to become one of his blood pedaling minions.  Eric also tricked Sookie into drinking his blood so that she would have hot sex dreams about him all the time.  (And that’s a BAD THING?)

Why he’s broody?  In truth, Eric’s not all that broody.   And if he was, he probably wouldn’t admit it.  But he does have a very soft spot for one Sookie Stackhouse, which has heretofore remains unrequited.   And Eric is not a man used to not getting his girl.  At the end of Season 2, we witnessed a vulnerable side to Eric that we hadn’t seen before.   He lost his beloved maker, Godric to the sun, and cried tears of blood to mourn the loss.  Thus, proving that even a “cold blooded” vampire like Eric can suffer from a broken heart.

Why we love him anyway?  Let’s face it.  Eric is just super sexy!  His witty banter with Sookie never fails to make me drool.  Eric also has a great sense of humor, and can lighten even the darkest of moments with his wit and charm.  Plus, Vampire Eric is a really good guy to have on your side, when you are faced with a group of evil supernatural creatures who wish you dead.  And you never know when that might come in handy.  Did I mention he would be an excellent accessory to any bathtub?

8 ) Logan Echolls  – Spoiled Little Rich Bad Boy

TV Show: Veronica Mars

Who plays him?  Jason Dohring

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Logan Echolls takes the term juvenile delinquent to a whole new level.  Like many on this list, Logan enjoys giving a good ass whipping, but that’s not anywhere close to the worst thing on his rap sheet.  Let’s see, during the show’s three seasons he (1) bashed the headlights on Veronica’s car; (2) brought GHB to a party; (3) blew up the local community pool; (4) orchestrated and videotaped “bum fights” for profit; (5) screwed his good friend’s mom and his girlfriend’s enemy; and (6) got himself arrested so he could beat up a known criminal who hurt Veronica. (I’m sure there’s more, but I only have so much blog space . . .)

Why he’s broody?  Logan’s dad was a famous actor, but also a sadistic psycho killer who slept with and then murdered Logan’s girlfriend, Lily.  Then his mother promptly killed herself.  Logan soon found himself to be a suspect in Lily’s murder.  Once he was cleared of that rap, he became a suspect in some gang member’s murder.  Then, later, he was a rape suspect. 

In fact, every time something bad happened in Logan’s general georgraphic vicinity, he became an automatic suspect.  After just a couple of episodes spent hating her guts, Logan fell in love with Veronica.  The problem was, there almost always seemed to be another guy (Duncan, Piz), another girl (Hannah, Kendall, Parker), another dead body, or another one of Logan’s bullheaded actions, standing in the way of the couple’s happiness.

Why we love him anyway?  Logan and Veronica were made for eachother!  Their witty banter was timeless.  Logan alone had enough one-liners to fill a Joke Bible . . .

 The sexual tension that emerged from Veronica’s and Logan’s once mutual hatred of one another could power cities.  No matter what the current state of their relationship was, Logan was always willing to risk everything to save Veronica, be it his happiness, his future, his life, or his freedom from legal prosecution. 

And what girl wouldn’t want that dedication in a guy?

9) Pacey Witter – Bad Boy from the Creek

TV Show: Dawson’s Creek

Who plays him?  Joshua Jackson

What makes him a Bad Boy?  Pacey was pretty much the worst student ever!  It was a wonder he even graduated!  He was also in many ways the ringleader of the Creek crew.  For the most part, they were pretty straight laced to the point of being kind of boring (I excuse Slutty Jen Lindley from this list of course).  But Pacey was always the one trying to lure them over to the darkside, with parties (gasp), and drinking (double gasp), and ditching school!  (OMG!) 

OK . . . so maybe he isn’t that much of a bad boy.  But I couldn’t imagine doing a “boy list” without including the boy that officially started my TV fangirl career.  And, of course, there was that time he banged his English teacher in the bushes and ended up inadvertently making a sex tape from it . . .

Why is he broody?  Like many of the boys on this list, Pacey is a product of a dysfunctional family — a drunken dad who abuses him, a brother who verbally berates him, and a mother and sisters who ignore him completely.  Due to his poor grades and upbringing, Pacey believes himself to be destined to a life on the Creek, doing menial labor for minimal wage.  To make matters worse, he spends a good portion of Season 3 head over heels in love with Joey Potter, a woman who he believes to be completely out of his league, and who also seems to be very hung up on his best friend, Dippy Dawson.

Why we love him anyway?  Pacey is by far, the kindest hearted, most romantic, sweetest, and most loyal boy on this entire list.  Not only did he beat up boys for his lover, Joey ( most of these guys did that at one time or another), he also took care of her when she needed a friend, taught her to drive, saved her family’s business, bought her a wall, picked her up from a bad date in the middle of the night, and took her on a three month voyage without ever pressuring her into sex.  In short, this man is MY HERO!

10) Damon Salvatore – The “I Like to Bite” Bad Boy

TV Show: The Vampire Diaries

Who plays him?  Ian Somerhalder

What makes him a Bad Boy?  What doesn’t make this guy a bad boy?  He’s a VAMPIRE!  He controls humans’ minds and drinks from them regularly.  He breaks peoples necks for no apparent reason at all.  He made Caroline his feeding vessel and sex slave for a couple of episodes.  

(Click the internal link to watch.)

 He tortured Vicki and made her think his brother, Stefan, was doing it.  Then he killed her. 

(No embedding on this clip either.  You know the drill.)

After that, he turned her into a vampire and she went nuts.  So he had to dispose of the body.  He also continually tries to steal his brother’s girlfriends.  (But we actually really like him for that .  . .)

What makes him broody?  Damon has been pining over the same girl for a century and a half!  (How’s that for dedication!)

So, he risks his undeath to find his dream girl, only to learn that she doesn’t want to be found.  His own brother basically tricked him into becoming a vampire.  And now that same brother is dating a woman who looks exactly like the girl he fell in love with all those years ago.  Did I mention that Damon is in love with this new girl too?

(Here we go again, click away . . .)

Why we love him anyway?  Damon is beautiful and sexy.  He is also strong, intensely masculine, and hilariously funny.  The elder Salvatore Brother really does try to protect Elena in every way he knows how.  Damon knows that Elena can redeem him.  And deep down, he truly wants to be redeemed.  Oh, and he looks really hot with his shirt unbuttoned. . .

So, there you have it, Ten Brooding Bad Boys viewed from the perspective of the blogger that loves them all.  In every life a little darkness must fall.  And if you have to have darkness, at least let it come in the form of a hot sexy man who loves you, like no one else will . . .

Sweet Dreams, fellow Good Girls!

[www.juliekushner.com]

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Filed under Dawson's Creek, Glee, Gossip Girl, Grey's Anatomy, Lost, Mad Men, The O.C., The Vampire Diaries, Top Ten Lists, True Blood, Veronica Mars

Create Your Dream Cast – Vampire Academy Series

A few months back, I became absolutely obsessed with a little book called The Hunger Games by groundbreaking author, Suzanne Collins.  Upon hearing that Lionsgate had purchased the film rights to the book, I decided it might be fun to create a sort of “dream cast,” of actors I would “hire” if I had the opportunity to do casting for the film.

Writing the post was a ton of fun for me.  Plus, a lot of people really seemed to respond to it. 

So, now it’s a few months later, and I find myself obsessed with a brand new Young Adult book series.   In many ways, Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy is the anti-Twilight.  On the surface, yes, like that other series, Vampire Academy is about a girl in her late teens who is enmeshed in a world of supernatural creatures, most notably, vampires.  However, Rose Hathaway, the main protagonist who narrates the books, for lack of a better phrase, kicks ass!  She is a dhampir.  A half-human, half-vampire amalgamation, who is training to become a guardian of vampires.  That’s right, boys and girls, she protects vampires, as opposed to being protected by them! 

While these books definitely focus MORE on action and less on the romance, there are enough longing looks and steamy scenes in these novels to sate the desires of even the most sappy of romantics.  And don’t even get me started on these dhampir and vampire men . . .  (swoons and faints).

Even though there are currently no plans to convert the Vampire Academy books into a film or television series (SERIOUSLY?  What are you WAITING for, Hollywood?), I thought it might be fun to return to the casting couch, and select who I would cast in a hypothetical film or television show based on these books.  

I plan to try EXTREMELY hard not to inadvertently spoil any of the main plot points of these books, in the context of explaining my various “casting” decisions.  However, there ARE lots of jaw-dropping twists in this series, particularly in the first novel, that impacted my ultimate decisions as to which actors should play these characters.  So, if you are a MAJOR spoiler-phobe, please tread lightly.  And don’t say I didn’t warn you . . .

Rose Hathaway:

My pick: Nikki Reed

Why I think she’d make a great Rose:  In many ways, Rose is the toughest character to cast in this series.  After all, as the series’ protagonist and first-person narrator, her likeability and relatability will drive the entire story.  Rose is a fairly complex gal.   On one hand, she is tough-as-nails, extremely brave, and fiercely loyal.  However, she can also be prone to impulsive behavior, moodiness, icy sarcasm, and intense bouts of rage.  To top it off, at the start of the series, Rose is quite the popular party girl, one who has a reputation, whether deserved or not, for being “more than friendly” with many of the guys at her school.

In terms of Rose’s physical characteristics, Nikki Reed meets them to a tee!  In the novels, Rose is described as being of medium height, muscular, and slightly curvy (at least in the chest area).  She also has lightly tanned skin, dark eyes, and long dark brown hair.  Additionally, as an actress still in her very early 20’s, Nikki will have no trouble passing for a 17-18 year old girl, particularly one as mature beyond her years, as Rose.

Of course, ideal physical characteristics alone do not make a perfect casting choice.  Undoubtedly, many of you likely remember Nikki as the blond and beautiful, but slightly bitchy, Rosalie Hale in the Twilight series . . .

However, what you may not know is that Nikki Reed has been acting in films and writing screenplays LONG before Twilight was even written.  Nikki was not even 15-years old when she wrote, and starred, alongside Evan Rachel Wood, in the heartbreaking and highly disturbing film Thirteen, about two young teens who find themselves falling into an unforgiving world of drugs, crime and sex.  The film was critically acclaimed and even received an Oscar Nomination.

Aside from “looking” right for the part, I think Nikki Reed has the acting chops, intelligence, physicality, and natural sex appeal to pull off a role as multi-faceted as Rose Hathaway.

Lissa Dragomir

My pick: Julianne Hough

Why I think she’d make a great Lissa: In the novel, Rose’s best friend, the vampiric Lissa Dragomir, is described as being tall, thin, and pale-skinned, with blonde hair, and piercing green eyes.  In terms of personality, Lissa and Rose are almost polar opposites.  While Rose, is loud, and tough, and brash, Lissa, a descendant from a long line of royal vampires, is more reseved, a bit more fragile, and a lot more graceful and sophisticated.  She also excudes a certain innocence, and charisma (part natural, part magical) that draws others to her, making her extremely well liked at the Academy where she and Rose study.  On the other hand, whoever took on the role of Lissa, must be able to display intense emotionality, as certain things happen during the course of the series that cause Lissa to lose her characteristic cool.

Most people are familiar with Julianne from her role as a dancer on Dancing with the Stars

In that capacity, Julianne’s grace, innocence, likeability, and natural charisma practically leap of the screen.  The question is, “Can she act?” 

I would be inclined to say, “yes.”  Hough has already been slated to play the female lead, Ariel Moore, in the upcoming remake of the popular 80’s musical film, Footloose, which originally starred Kevin Bacon. 

 The role of Ariel in that film is a fairly meaty one, particularly for an actress making her big screen debut.  For the producers of the movie to cast Julianne in that role, she must have shown them something truly special at her audition.  If Julianne can pull off Ariel Moore, I have no doubt that she would also be able to pull off Lissa Dragomir.

Dimitri Belikov

My pick: Channing Tatum

Why I think he would make a great Dimitri: As Rose’s mentor, and main love interest throughout the series, 24-year old guardian, Dimitri Belikov is arguably the most important male role to cast in a film or television show based on this series.  In the books, he is described as being extremely tall, and impressively buff, with dark eyes and brown hair. 

Dimitri is basically every girl’s dream.  On one hand, he’s strong and amazingly tough.  He described as a “god” by many at the Academy.  And yet, he is also stern, secretive, and sensitive — a natural born-caretaker, one constantly torn between doing his job well and giving in to his desires.

Having starred in films like G.I. Joe and Step Up, we know that Channing Tatum has the physicality necessary for this role (And have you seen those abs?  WOW!).  Yet, Tatum has also had the opportunity to prove himself capable of taking on the role of romantic lead, as evidenced by his portrayal of John Tyree in the recently released chick flick, Dear John.  I’m just hoping he can fake a Russian accent . . .

Christian Ozera

My pick: Ed Westwick

Why I think he’d make a great Christian:  As Lissa’s main love interest throughout the series, Christian is probably the second most important male lead to cast.  The character is described as being tall and lean, with dark hair and pale skin.  Christian begins the series as a loner and an outsider, due to a questionable family history.  He has a dark sense of humor, a biting wit, and is not afraid to challenge authority.  Christian also can do very cool things with fire . . .

I chose Westwick, mainly because, aside from him being an amazing actor, I felt Christian’s relationship with Lissa, at least as it was portrayed in the first book in the series, dovetailed nicely with Westwick’s character Chuck’s relationship with Blair, during the early seasons of the CW series Gossip Girl.

In both relationships, the male lead is instantly sure of his feelings for the object of his desire, while the female will ultimately take a bit more convincing.   Like Chuck and Blair, Christian understands Lissa in a way that nobody else does, not even Rose.  To win her heart, he uses his intelligence and wit, as opposed to any sort of brute strength or macho bravado.  Christian’s and Lissa’s relationship has a fun, and undeniably sexy, push and pull, in its early stages, that I would love to see play out screen.  And who better to exemplify the “push and pull” of young love than Chuck Bass?

Mason Ashford

My pick: Douglas Smith

Why I think he’d make a great Mason:  As Rose’s best guy friend and fellow guardian, who just so happens to harbor a not-so-secret crush on Rose, Mason doesn’t play a particularly big part in the first book of the Vampire Academy series.  However, he DOES play a major role in Frostbite, its sequel.  In the books, Mason is described as being tall (Am I the only one noticing a pattern here?), and red-headed, with boyish good looks.  In casting Mason, it is important to find a guy who is likeable and fun enough, to function as a reasonable, if not exactly heart-stopping, alternative to Dimitri, to fulfill the role of Rose’s boyfriend.  Douglas Smith’s portrayal of Ben Henrickson in the HBO series Big Love is so genuine and inherently likeable, you almost want to reach through the screen and give him a hug.  Yeah, that’s our Mason!

Mia Rinaldi

My pick:  Ashley Benson

Why I think she’d make a great Mia: Every high school series needs a mean girl.  And, in the Vampire Academy series, those shoes are filled, at least initially, by Mia Rinaldi.  Rose’s and Lissa’s nemesis, Mia, is one year younger than they are.  She is described as being short (YAY!  FINALLY!  Short people represent . . . too bad it had to be the bitchy one . . .), with blonde hair, blue eyes, and a childlike cherubic face that belies her catty and manipulative nature.  And yet, there is also a vulnerability to Mia.  Behind that cold facade, Mia hides a few dark secrets, ones that make her actions, if not necessarily justifiable, at least understandable.

Best known for her role as Carson in the fourth installment of the Bring it On film series, and for her upcoming turn as Hanna in the new ABC Family teen drama, Pretty Little Liars, premiering this summer, Ashley has plenty of experience playing the girl you love to hate.  And yet, there is always a soft-side to her portrayals — one that allows the “love” part to dominate just a bit more than it would otherwise . . .

Natalie Dashkov

My pick: Tina Majorino

Why I think she would make a great Natalie: In Vampire Academy, Natalie is more or less described as a plain-jane.  Natalie is the quiet, sweet, and socially awkward friend of Rose’s and Lissa’s.  Unlike the others, she seems to care little about the politics of high school.  The actress who plays Natalie must be sweet and inherently likeable, but have sufficient acting chops to pull off a major dramatic turn toward the end of the first installment of the series.  Majorino’s recent portrayals of Heather in Big Love and Mack in Veronica Mars, have shown her to be precisely the right girl for the job.

Jesse Zeklos

My pick: Michael Trevino

Why I think he’d make a great Jesse:  In the novels, Jesse is described as being a tall, dark, and handsome, spoiled rich kid.  He is popular, D-baggy, manipulative, and rumored to have slept with multiple members of the cast.  Now if that doesn’t SCREAM Tyler Stratton from CW’s The Vampire Diaries, I don’t know WHAT does!

Eddie Castile

My pick: Chris Lowell

Why I think he’d make a great Eddie:  Admittedly, at the start of the series, Eddie is little more than Mason’s friend and sidekick, and, therefore, a sort-of adopted member of the novels’ “Scooby Gang.”  However, by the second and third installment of the series, Eddie comes into his own, as a loyal friend and strong protector of those around him.  In casting Eddie, the producers would need someone relatable, who has a sense of humor, and isn’t afraid of getting knocked around a bit (and bitten?).  Seeing as Chris Lowell’s character Dell on Private Practice recently died of a brain hemorrhage, I’m thinking the actor’s schedule is WIDE open . . .

Adrian Ivashkov

My pick: Jason Dohring

Why I think he’d make a great Adrian:  OK, this is sort of cheating, seeing as Adrian doesn’t appear AT ALL in the first book of the series.  However, the character plays such a major role in the subsequent books, I just couldn’t resist trying my hand at casting him.  The novel describes Adrian as tall and fair haired with penetrating eyes that see EVERYTHING.  He is more muscularly built than most vampires, but leaner than super-buff dhampirs, like Dimitri.  At first glance, 21-year old Adrian might appear to the casual reader as just another spoiled rich vampire — a hard drinking, heavy smoking, womanizing, cad, with too much money and time on his hands. 

However, as we get to know Adrian throughout the series, we see that he is much more than that.  He is smart and often scarily perceptive, instantly knowing things about Rose that she might not even understand about herself.  Adrian can also be surprisingly generous with his money, his time, and his soul.  He quickly develops a friendship with Lissa, and harbors an as-of-yet unrequited MAJOR soft-spot for Rose.  More so than Mason, Adrian could wind up being a major contender in the battle for our main protagonist’s heart.

So why Jason Dohring?   Basically, a few years back, I fell in LOVE with a character by the name of Logan Echolls!  On Veronica Mars, he too was a spoiled womanizing rich kid bad boy.  Or, at least, he started off that way.  That was before he fell in love with Veronica Mars, who like Rose, was a kickass, hardcore, take-no-prisoners, protagonist, who began the series, despising Logan. 

In my opinion, Veronica’s and Logan’s relationship remains one of the hottest and most compulsively watchable couplings in television.  Please forgive me for wanting to see my Logan again, even if it has to be with another leading lady . . .

So, there you have it, my Dream Cast for the Vampire Academy film and/or television series.  Now we just have to find someone willing to buy the media rights . . . Any takers?

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Filed under Book, casting, Vampire Academy

Accentuate the Positive, Eliminate the Vanessa & Dan-itive (a.k.a. My Gossip Girl Season 4 Wish List)

 

Greetings fellow GG fans!  Can you believe there are only TWO more episodes left, before Season 3 draws to a close, and our favorite Upper East Siders ride off into the sunset (most likely to the Hamptons) for summer hiatus?  (The season finale episode, entitled Last Tango, Then Paris, is scheduled to air on May 17th on the CW.)

“OMFG, S!  That TV Recapper Girl is staring at us again!  Doesn’t she know we’re on vacation?” 

As the summer months will definitely be long, hot, and lonely, without my wealthy and stylish New York friends to party with on Monday nights, I thought it might be fun, just this once, in lieu of my usual weekly recap, to peer into my crystal ball into Gossip Girl‘s future, a.k.a Season 4.

Here’s the thing . . . I’ve been a fan of Gossip Girl pretty much since it started, which was back in 2007.   (Sheesh, I can’t believe it’s actually been that long!  I feel OLD!).  When you’ve been with a show for that long, you can’t help but become invested in its characters and storylines.  You also can’t help but form some REALLY STRONG opinions on which aspects of the show you think work, and which . . . well . . . don’t.  So, without further adieu, here is my Wish List of Ten Things I’d Like to See More (or Less) of during Season 4 of Gossip Girl .  . .

1) More C&B Moments!

This one is so obvious, it almost goes without saying.  But, of course, I am going to say it anyway.  As far as I am concerned, Chuck and Blair are, and have always been, the true heart and soul of Gossip Girl.  Every time Leighton Meester and Ed Westwick are on screen together, their explosive on-screen presences and undeniable sexual chemistry are so intense, that I sometimes fear that their collective “heat” will burn a hole in my television set.  Check out this SMOKING HOT fan video of the pair, if you don’t believe me!

Early on in Season 3, Chuck and Blair fell into that WAY TOO common trap suffered by many of television’s great super couples.  Here’s how it goes. . .  You have these two sexy characters that are TOTALLY hot for eachother.  But, for one reason or another, they can’t couple.  (Maybe one of them is dating someone else.  Maybe the two are pretending to hate one another.  Or maybe each member of the pair is simply too proud to admit their true romantic feelings, out of fear of hurt or rejection.)  In Chuck’s and Blair’s case, it was ALL OF THE ABOVE!

So, FINALLY the Season Finale comes.  And the writers give fans what they have been clamoring for since the first episode, a dramatic event that throws the two unrequited lovers together and FORCES them to admit their feelings for one another.  Fans rejoice!  Pause and rewind buttons are worn out on television sets, as “shippers” replay the sexy satisfying moment of coupling OVER AND OVER AGAIN!  DVDs of the Season are preordered en-mass, JUST so people can rewatch the finale.  Fangirl blog posts are written in ALL CAPS with lots of smiley face emoticons!

Then the following Season begins and the pair is now a COUPLE.  And the writers are stumped as to what to do with these fan favorites.  So, first, they give the new couple a lot of makeout and sex scenes to appease the fans.  Then they throw the pair into ridiculous situations, just so the two can fight with one another, and somehow be involved in the story.  But the “fights” seem lame and contrived, and the loyal fans don’t buy into them for one second.  These fans soon grow bored with the same people they once tuned in week after week to see.  Unfortunately, it happens all the time.  And it happened to Chuck and Blair.

But now that the two have broken up (but obviously still care for one another), the writers have an EXCELLENT opportunity to rebuild the angst and sexual tension Chuck and Blair once had.  There can ONCE AGAIN be longing looks, and ALMOST sex moments!  There can be sexy “I want to rip your clothes off, because you infuriate me so much,” bickering.  And there can be the inevitable jealousy that arises when one of the pair tries in vain to “move on.”

You have the power to REALLY make this work GG writers, so DON’T SCREW IT UP!  Don’t instantly throw Chuck and Blair into random and unfulfilling relationships with new characters we don’t care about, or old characters we don’t like that much (cough, Jenny, cough).  Curious as to how to fill Chuck’s and Blair’s time while they are single and, once again, longing for one another, writers?   #5 on this list, should help you out there . . .

2) DOWN WITH DAN AND VANESSA!

“Hey Vanessa, what are you watching?” 

“The Chuck and Blair parts of our show.”

“Cool, let’s do that for the remainder of our screen time.  Maybe it will make us more interesting .  . .”

People who read my recaps might get the idea that I HATE Dan and Vanessa.  I don’t (or at least, I didn’t).  You know when I liked Dan and Vanessa?  Back during Season 1, when they were the poor kids, thrown in with a bunch of rich kids they didn’t like and felt morally superior to.  Because Dan and Vanessa were different than the rest of the GG crew.  They were snarky, and not as well-dressed, and a bit less attractive (Sorry guys!).  So when they made fun of Serena, Nate, Chuck and Blair, you laughed with them, and related to them.  Then the writers got the “great” idea to incorporate Dan and Vanessa into the gang.  They even made Dan RICH! 

“Yo, Jeeves!  I called you TWO WHOLE minutes ago!  Where the F is my limo?  I’d rather DIE than ride the subway!”

What’s worse?  They took these two GREAT sidekicks,  and not only put them center stage, but put them center stage TOGETHER!  Why?  Vanessa and Dan are practically the SAME PERSON!  They are both artsy fartsy, self-righteous, outsiders, who prefer talking about art and literature to partying and having sex.  How can such people even exist on a show like Gossip Girl AT ALL?  Let alone take up 15 minutes of screentime each week .  . .

The TV version of a sleeping pill . . .

Now, I’m not saying to get rid of Dan and Vanessa ALTOGETHER (Although, seeing as the writers just shipped Vanessa off to Haiti, they may, ultimately, have decided to do just that).  I’m simply saying keep them as snarky sidekicks.  Let them give sage advice to our less “level-headed characters.”  Let them provide a grounded sense of realism to the show (as long as such grounded realism lasts under 7 minutes . . .).  Gossip Girl is supposed to be about ostentation, fashion, gorgeous people, bad immoral behavior and teenage angst.  Mature cast members need not apply.  Which leads me to #3 on this list . . .

3) Ix-Nay on the Parental Units’ Storylines, Por Favor!

OK, this one is probably going to sound a little ageist.  But just as I am not cool with Dan and Vanessa eating up twenty minutes of perfectly good GG screentime, nor am I copacetic with that same screentime being devoured by:  Lily van der Woodsen, Dr. van der Woodsen, Rufus Humphrey (and/or that slutty neighbor chick who wants in his pants), Eleanor Waldorf, and Cyrus Rose.  I would, however, make an exception for the Dead Bart Bass . . .

This guy is just too cool!

Look, I’ll be the first to admit it.  There are PLENTY of great shows out there that revolve around the “Over 40” set.  Like, for example, Desperate Housewives or The Golden Girls.

Gossip Girl just ISN’T one of those shows . . .  It’s on the CW, for crying out loud – The NETWORK for late teen, and early twenty-something angst!  Now, I know these teens DO have parents.  And I am not expecting the show to convert said parents into off-screen incoherent buzzing sounds, a la Charlie Brown. . .

 . . . nor should they be just a pair of “feet,” like The Nanny in The Muppet Babies.

All I’m saying, is I don’t need to be informed EVERY time Lily is propositioned by one of her many, many, MANY aging bachelors.  And I don’t need to see that furrowed brow look that Rufus gets every time he feels “insecure.”  Enough is enough!

4) Fire Little J’s Stylist!

(Self explanatory)

5) Bring Back Scheming Blair and Self-Destructive Chuck!

Earlier in this post, I suggested that the writers keep Chuck and Blair single and hot for eachother during most of Season 4.  I also suggested that I would provide the writers with guidance, as to how to keep the characters’ busy during those long uncoupled months.  Here it is!  Gossip Girl was never about “good behavior.”  We love our characters best when they are being naughty!  So, enough of all of this maturity!  Let Chuck get self-destructive, drunk, and slutty with random girls.  Let Blair scheme and connive to get what she wants and to get revenge against those who double cross her.  Better yet, let these two awesomely adorable baddies self-destructively scheme and connive TOGETHER, like they did during Season 1!

6) Get thee to Columbia, GO!

When a high school show transitions into a college show, it is typically a make or break time for the series.  Lesser shows have failed in making the transition, but Gossip Girl did a fairly good job of it.  The writers managed to keep all of the characters in NYC and, therefore, relevant to the series, while not falling into the “they should all go to the same college” trap, into which other shows have fallen.  For example, it makes total sense, that the non-academically inclined Chuck, and the under achieving, Slutty Serena would not attend school at all, while the born-with-a-silver-spoon-in-his-mouth Nate would be able to use his lineage to get into an Ivy League school.  However, I can’t say I’ve been all that pleased with the show’s portrayal of NYU.

Having taken summer classes at NYU, I am happy to report that it’s a fine establishment, no where near the lame artsy fartsy place it’s portrayed as on the show.  Now that BOTH Nate and Blair are attending Columbia on the Upper West side, the writers have a BRILLIANT opportunity to portray a second college in a more realistic way than they portrayed the first.  The change of scenery might be nice too . . .

7) “New York . .  .  it’s streets will make you feel brand new.  It’s lights will inspire you.”  USE IT!

As someone who works in NYC, I generally love Gossip Girl’s glamorous and CLEAN portrayal of my city.  However, they keep showing us the SAME TWO BLOCKS!  NYC is a vast playground, in which our favorite characters can thrive and play.  Take advantage, writers!  Wouldn’t you LOVE, for example, to see Blair muck it up in the not always so classy, Times Square?  Or watch Serena get laid in the Bronx?  Because I WOULD!

8 ) Put the “F” back in OMFG!

I absolutely ADORED the “OMFG” Gossip Girl campaign that jump started Season 2 of the show.  After all, how could you possibly top posters like these?

Except, lately, I feel like the show has gotten a bit .  . . how do I say this . . . TAME!  So, here’s a tip for the writers: in Season 4, try to include at least one OMFG (slutty) moment per every 20 minutes of Gossip Girl.    You get extra bonus points if the slutty scene in question involves Chuck and / or Blair.

9) Little Eric . . . BIG Backstory!

In last week’s GG installment, “It’s a Dad, Dad, Dad, Dad World,” the chronically underwritten Eric van der Woodsen really got a chance to shine.  And fans FINALLY got to see Connor Paolo flex his acting chops.  The episode also gently reminded us that ERIC TRIED TO COMMIT SUICIDE back in Season 1!  Why did he do this?  What made him so depressed?  I would really love to see this storyline explored (possibly through flashbacks) during Season 4.  And I think Mr. Paolo is up for the challenge . . .

10) If Nate only had a brain (and a decent storyline) . . .

It’s no secret that Chace Crawford is easy on the eyes.  But I THINK he can actually ACT too.  Although, you wouldn’t really know this from watching Gossip Girl, of late.  In recent episodes, it seems as though Nate’s only function is be the sex toy for whatever lady happens to desire his “services” at the moment.  If GG was a porno (and sometimes I wonder if it is), Nate would be the Pizza Delivery Guy.

Earlier in this post, I saved you writers A LOT of screentime by nixing storylines for Dan, Vanessa, and the Upper East Side Parental Units (except for, of course, Awesomely Dead Bart Bass).  Let’s fill some of that screentime with a meaty Nate storyline — perhaps, one that doesn’t involve him taking his clothes off at the the first opportunity . . .

There you have it GG fans, my Wish List for Season 4 of Gossip Girl.  Oh, and if, by chance, you happen to be experiencing GG-related withdrawal symptoms this summer, I recently came across an EXCELLENT Gossip Girl blog site, that will be sure to satisfy all of your OMFG needs.  Here’s the link:

http://chuckandblairtheperfectpair.wordpress.com/

The writers of the site are VERY nice, and will be happy to assist you. (Just don’t mention the whole “Chenny” thing to them.  You might make them angry . . .  ;))

XOXO

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Filed under Gossip Girl

When The Vampire Diaries’ Meets Lost . . . : A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Blood Brothers”

Fans of both Lost and The Vampire Diaries likely found a lot of similarities between this week’s TVD installment and that other show trickling across the airwaves right now.  And I’m not just talking about how both shows feature Ian Somerhalder playing a ” hot dead guy” . . .

Like that “other show,” “Blood Brothers” split its time between the present day and a flashback this week, in order to: (1) further develop the characters featured in the flashback; (2) explain these characters’ actions and motivations; and (3) provide viewers with additional insight into the show’s “mysteries.”  In addition to being profoundly Lost-ian . . .

 . . . this week’s episode, also featured: some truly sexy moments (way to go Jeremy and Anna!), some shockingly disturbing moments (Stefan ate his dad?), a vampiric re-death (R.I.P. Vampire Pearl), a vampiric rebirth (Hi, Isobel!), and, if you were really looking hard for it (like I was), some yummy grist for the Damon and Elena shipper mill . . .

Sigh . . .

Let’s bite into the episode, shall we?

When the Going Gets Tough, the Tough Eat Daddy .  . .

When we last left our pal Stefan, he was acting like a total human bloodaholic, and, in Damon’s words, “going around chewing on people.”

Before you chew on me, Stefan, may I interest you in a nice stick of gum, instead?

Same gushy center, less mess . . .

And so, with the help of Damon and Elena (It has such a nice ring to it, don’t you think?), Stefan met up with the business end of a vervain-filled syringe, and ended up locked up in a sort of jail cell, conveniently located right inside the Salvatores’ La Casa de Rich and Awesome.  (You know, if I ever make it big enough to buy myself a mansion, I am TOTALLY putting some sort of cage in it . . . )

Because CAGES are SUPER KINKY!

Anyway, being “locked up” and all, Stefan suddenly has a lot of time to think.  So, he flashes back to the time in his life when he and Damon first became vampires.  This is great news for us fans, because we FINALLY get to learn how it all went down . . .

When we last left Flashback World, the Mystic Falls townspeople were in the process of forcibly gathering up all of the town’s vampires, in order to stuff them in a church and burn them to smithereens.  The mob is being led by none other than Damon’s and Stefan’s father, who uses the information he learned from Stefan, himself, to get to Katherine.  This is a very RUDE thing of Daddy Salvatore to do, putting a muzzle on a woman with whom you used to play croquet . . .

“But, Mr. Salvatore, I let you WIN!”

When Katherine is captured, Damon and Stefan band together to come to her rescue.  While they are attempting to untie and unmuzzle her, two gun shots are fired in rapid succession off-screen, one landing in each of the Salvatore brothers’ chests.  As the brothers’ lie on the ground, bloody and unconscious, Katherine is dragged away by the angry townspeople.

A few days later, Stefan and Damon wake up in a secluded area.  There, they are promptly informed by Witch Emily . . .

 . . . who just so happens to be the ancestor of Witch Bonnie . . .

 . . . that because both brothers drank Katherine’s blood (Damon, by choice, and Stefan, by compulsion) prior to being killed, they are now in transition toward becoming vampires.  The catch?  In order to fully transform into vampires, they need to drink . . .

 . . . ASAP, or they will DIE (for good, this time).

Initially, both Stefan and Damon agree that, without Katherine, there is no reason for eternal life. So, they must allow themselves to die, rather than complete the transition.  However, on a whim, Stefan decides to go to his father’s house to wish him goodbye.  Once there, his father informs Stefan that HE WAS THE ONE WHO SHOT THEM!!!!!  This bastard shot his own sons, because he didn’t like the girl they were dating?  Overreact much? 

 To make matters worse, Daddy Salvatore seems intent to finish the job.  He rushes at Stefan, clutching a large stake-like poker in his hands.  But Stefan, who has already gained some of his legendary vampire strength from those legendary (and hot) vampire arms of his . . .

 . . . stabs his DAD with the poker instead.  And while Stefan’s Daddy is moaning, groaning, and basically dying in front of him, Stefan begins to EAT HIM (well . . . drink his blood, at least).  The scene is NASTY!  I mean, sure, Daddy Salvatore was a TOTAL PRICK, no question.  But drinking the guy who gave you life, is kind of like drinking yourself .  . .

Stefan returns to Damon, all crazy-eyed and red-haired (not sure when present day Stefan found time in his busy “chewing on people” schedule to get a dye job, but, apparently, he did).  Trailing behind Stefan is a teenage girl, clearly under compulsion.  Stefan tells Damon that they were wrong.  That there is no need to die, not when drinking blood can “take away the pain” of life and “open up whole new worlds” for the Salvatore brothers.  Initially, Damon seems repulsed by his younger brother’s behavior, and hesitant to make the transition.  But, ultimately, his vampire urges take hold of him, and he sucks on (and very likely kills) the teenage girl.

After Damon returns from his “snack,” he angrily vows to make Stefan’s life hell on earth for all eternity.  And, in hindsight, we know that, for a good portion of his undeath, Damon did just that . . .

You just KNEW I’d find SOME WAY to use this picture again, in my recap, didn’t you?

They’re Bringing Sexy Back (from the dead . . .)

So, I’ve got good news and bad news.  Which news do you want first?  The good news?  OK.  Jeremy and Anna?  They are a SUPER HOT COUPLE!  And if their sort-of sex scene and post-coital cuddle wasn’t all of two-seconds long, I would have TOTALLY shown you a Shirtless Jeremy pic from it.  The actor who plays him (Steven R. McQueen) is, after all, 21-years old . . .

In addition to being HOT, Jeremy and Anna were also really sweet together.  Between Anna’s willingness to stand up to her mother, and revisit the slings and arrows of high school, just to spend time with Jeremy; and Jeremy’s sleepy whisper of “Oh, that feels so good,” when Anna lovingly rubbed his face, as the two laid in bed together, I instantly became a Team Jeranna fan! 

So, here’s the bad news:  near the end of the episode, Anna’s mom, Vampire Pearl . . .

 . . . was bludgeoned by a crossbow, shot at her from long range, and instantly killed!  Who killed her, you ask?  Presumably, this CREEPO . . .

 . . . Uncle John (I HATE THIS GUY!), who realized he no longer had any use for Pearl, upon learning that she had given his ancestor’s Magic Vampire Killer Thingy (that nobody knows how to use yet) to Damon.  Just one question:  What happened to Hottie Vampire Harper?

Vampire Pearl’s loyal associate was standing right next to Vampire Anna when she was bludgeoned, but has not been seen or heard from since . . .

Damon and Alaric – The Bromance Continues . . .

This week, Alaric calls his new buddy Damon (LOVE these two together!) to check out a lead he had on the possible whereabouts of his previously-thought-to-be-dead-but-actually-a-vampire wife, Isobel.  Damon immediately agrees to come along.  And although I know that Damon was the one responsible for turning Isobel, my Damon and Elena shipper sense tells me, that Damon went on this “little journey” with the secret hope of helping Elena to find her long lost biological mother.  After all, Alaric’s “ex” and Elena’s “mom” are one in the same person.

“Damon Salvatore is currently out kicking some Serious Vampire Ass for the woman he secretly loves . . . Leave a message.”

When Damon and Alaric arrive at the house initially thought to contain Isobel . . .

 . . . she’s not there.  However, some random Hidey Hole Vamp is!  (And WE thought they were GONE FOR GOOD!)  Upon learning that Random Vampire Henry is somehow connected to Creepy Uncle John, Alaric and Damon KILL HIS BLOODY BUTT for good!  Congratulations to Vampire Henry for winning the Senseless Death Award for the week!  Here’s your trophy . . .

 Teacher (as Damon lovingly calls Alaric) is getting surprisingly good at murdering folks, now, isn’t he?  Once the deed is done, the two engage in a heartwarming personal conversation about the struggles of pining over the “one who got away.”  “Two years pining over the woman who left you, is remarkably healthy, I think,” remarks Damon, self-deprecatingly, having mooned over Vampire Katherine for way over a century now.

Although the two pals end their little road trip empty handed, in the last scene of the episode, Isobel comes out of hiding and confronts Alaric at the local bar.  Seeing as how next week’s episode is entitled “Isobel,” I’m pretty sure we haven’t seen the last of this chick . . .

The Will to Live (and to wear sexy white tees that show of your KILLER arms) . . .

When Stefan wasn’t flashing back to his past, he spent most of the episode, brooding, refusing to drink blood, and flexing those drool-worthy pectoral muscles of his.  Elena, who has been basically living at La Casa de Rich and Awesome with both Salvatores for a few days now  . . . (Threesome anyone?) . . . continually tries to get through to Stefan, and break him out of his funk.  At one point, she even goes as far as to enter the “lion’s den” with the hungry vampire, putting her life at risk.  But Stefan, feeling incredibly guilty for his recent behavior, and for the part he played in making Damon become a vampire, wants to die, as he feels he should have done all those years ago.  During the episode’s climax, Stefan escapes his cage, leaving his “I can be in sunlight without rotting” ring on the floor by his prison cot.  His plan, of course, is to meet the sun and die at dawn.

“I put up with your crap for 20 episodes, and all I get for it is this UGLY ASS RING?   You could have at least got me something from Tiffany’s . . .”

Having recently heard Stefan’s flashback tale of woe from Damon (BTW E and D have been sharing adorably snarky barbs and smirks with one another ALL NIGHT . . . just saying), Elena instantly knows she can find Stefan at the very spot where he got Damon to eat that teen way back when.  Elena explains to Stefan that she too is no stranger to guilt.   After all, she was the reason her parents were out driving on the night they were both killed in the car accident.  Elena explains to Stefan that she knows he is “good,” and that, together, they can beat his human blood addiction.  Ultimately, Stefan puts back on that UGLY ASS RING, and the two kiss and make up.

With Stefan back to being the “good brother” and Damon’s alone time with Elena over, it is now Damon’s turn to brood.  In the last scene featuring the sexy Salvatore brothers, Damon admits that the REAL reason he hates Stefan is because Katherine chose to “turn” Stefan too.  And now, it seems, once again, that the two brothers are in love with the same girl . . .

Love sucks . . . and so do these guys .  . . literally.

 Can’t wait to sink your teeth into “Isobel?”  Non-spoilerphobes can click the video below to watch stills from next week’s episode, in which Slutty Bad Ass Vampire Isobel seems to be wreaking havoc on Mystic Falls.  The pictures feature, among other things, quite a few photos of Damon Salvatore adorably open-shirted.  So, put your fingers on those “print screen” buttons, ladies . . . 

 

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Too DIVA-licious? – A Recap of Glee’s “The Power of Madonna”

“Psst!  Sue!  I don’t really know how to tell you this . . . but your HIGH BEAMS are showing . . .”

Could there ever POSSIBLY be such a thing as TOO MUCH MADONNA?  The Verdict is still out for me on that one.  But one thing is for sure, Glee definitely put this question to the test,  during last night’s episode .  . . With a total of EIGHT musical numbers from the Madonna catalogue, and countless other Madge songs blaring in the background throughout the episode, there was literally little room for anything else during the hour.  In fact, the plot took SUCH a backseat during “The Power of Madonna,” that I felt less like I was watching a musical teen dramedy, and more like I was at concert featuring my favorite Madonna cover band . . .

In terms of the musical numbers, Glee TOTALLY outdid itself last night!  I have NO DOUBT that the show’s inevitable Madonna-themed album will remain in high rotation on my iPod for perpetuity.  And, as if that wasn’t enough, some of the costumes and choreography on these numbers were (dare I say it) BETTER than the original music videos on which they were based!  Here were my four fave performances of the evening . . .

1) Express Yourself

The first singing number of the evening, was a Girl Power-Infused, Pastel-Colored, Beltfest, that would have made the Divine Miss Madonna, herself, PROUD!  Sure the “rationale” behind the song, “BOYS are MEAN, GIRLS RULE!” was a bit cliche and juvenile, but the flawless performances by our female Gleeks, more than made up for this.  Once again, while, unfortunately, I can’t show you the musical number in its entirety, you can at least listen to it, HERE . . .

2) The Borderline / Open Your Heart Mash-up

While, the on-screen chemistry between Lea Michele and Jonathan Groff is admittedly sizzling, there is just something about the screentime she shares with Cory Monteith, that is incredibly honest and sweet.  Plus, now that these two have that sort of “unrequited love” thing going for them again, I may just have to go back to rooting for this couple to “re-couple.”  The “story” behind the mash-up, is that Rachel has just admitted to Finn that she is still dating Jesse St. James, star of Vocal Adrenaline, and the Gleeks’ arch rival.  Finn sort of/ kind of tries to be supportive, but more or less just ends up sulking.  (After all, don’t all boys only want what they can’t have?) 

 I imagine the number was supposed to be a sort of dream sequence, taking place jointly in the minds of both characters.  Otherwise, the Madonna music video-attired class mates bustling around in the background, and the LOUD SINGING IN THE LIBRARY  .  .  .

 (Really Glee?  Again?  McKinley High doesn’t have other places for its students to break into song . . . like, say . . . THE BATHROOM )

. . . would just be completely bizarre.  You can listen to the lovey-dovey, brooding fabulousness HERE . . .

3) Like a Virgin

Not to toot my own horn or anything  . . .

. . . But I TOTALLY called the use of this song, the minute Emma “came out” as a “Big Ole Virgin,” during last week’s episode.  In terms of a natural and seemless meshing between storyline and singing, “Like A Virgin” clearly won the award last night.  Three virginal Gleeks: Rachel, Finn, and Emma, all decided to do the DEED last night, with their respective sort-of significant others Jesse, Santana, and Will.  Only Finn actually did it.  (But he lied to Rachel, and said he didn’t.)  Conversely, Rachel DIDN’T DO IT, but told Finn that she did. 

Emma also didn’t do it (not quite sure WHY though . . . of the three relationships on-screen, this one seemed the healthiest, Will’s Man Sluttiness aside).  However, she DID decide to get “counseling” for her problem.  (I’m assuming when she says “problem,” she’s referring to her OCD, and not her Virginity, as the latter is SIGNIFICANTLY easier to “kick” than the former . . . just saying.  Also, it would kind of be a dick move on Will’s part, to refer Emma to a counselor, just so he could get laid . . . ).  Anyway, here’s the song . . .

4) Like a Prayer

Sure, the finale ensemble number had no correlation to the episode’s storylines whatsoever.  But, in this case, it sort of didn’t have to.  It just worked.  I LOVED how Kurt and Mercedes got oodles of solos, during this episode.  After all, my girl Mercedes kind of had a point when she griped that, lately, all they have been letting her character do is “belt the high notes at the end.”  (Something tells me — with these two now on the Cheerios, and a romantic storyline for Kurt on the horizon — that we are going to be seeing a lot more of this dynamic duo, in the coming weeks.) 

Oh, and are any of you ACTUALLY buying that Jesse St. James transferred schools and joined the Gleeks, just to be with Rachel (who he really just met), and not to please his Nazi Vocal Adrenaline Glee Coach, Ms. Corcoran?

A close (and very smart) friend of mine commented on how IDIOTIC Will Schuester was for BLINDLY going along with this.  And I think she has a point.  On the other hand, in a SANE world, who in their right mind would go so far as to TRANSFER SCHOOLS just to commit an undercover Glee Sting Operation for your coach?  REAL PEOPLE in the REAL WORLD simply wouldn’t even consider this an option to be concerned about.  Then again, this IS a school where teachers rufie their principals, so that they can blast Madonna through the speakers during school hours . . .

 . . . so maybe Mr. Schuester should have seen this one coming . . .

Speaking of Shady Glee Narc D-Bags, in addition to seeing Kurt and Mercedes in the forefront, during the final song, it was nice to see Jesse St. James withering away in the background.  Two weeks and that dude is already starting to grate on my nerves .  . .

In other news, we FINALLY learned the source of Sue Sylvester’s obsession with berating Will’s hair.  Apparently, following the release of Madonna’s 1986 True Blue album, Sue, then “age 6” (I’m thinking more like “age 16”), tried to bleach her hair and had a terrible accident, as a result.  This Hair Catastrophe has forced Sue to keep her hair short, ever since.  So, when it comes to Will’s highly-gelled coiff, Sue is simply jealous.  While this surely sucks for Sue, I can’t help but agree with Will, that her current ‘do is TOTALLY Florence Henderson!

A Very Brady Haircut!

Well, that’s all I’ve got!  See ya next week, Gleeks!

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“More of THAT Please!” – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries “A Few Good Men”

 

Welcome back VD’ers!  (Don’t you like how I basically just called you all a bunch of venereal diseases?  Great way to make friends and influence people, huh?) 

It’s been WAY too long since we’ve had a “taste” of our favorite campy, bloody, teen drama, hasn’t it?  But, now, we are back, and (I think) better than ever . . .

There was a lot to love in this week’s “Back from Hiatus” installment of The Vampire Diaries!  For starters, we got a few GREAT booby shots of a Drunk Shirtless, Slightly Broody, and Highly Emotionally Volatile Damon Salvatore . . .

More of THAT Please!

We also got a drool-worthy, sexual tension-laced “shirt BUTTONING” scene between our favorite couple-not-yet-to-couple, Damon and Elena . . .

More of THAT Please!

(By the way, in addition to being AWESOME, shirt on AND shirt off, Damon also had the dubious honor of uttering my favorite quote from this episode, “Unrequited love sucks, man!”  — Great line.  But so untrue, Damon.  Unrequited love ROCKS . . . particularly when YOU are doing the loving!)

Then, there were not ONE, not TWO, but THREE senseless Deaths,  this episode . . . well, two-and-a-half, depending on how you felt about Alaric’s rebirth . . .

( . . . will live to write on chalkboards and be stultifyingly boring, ANOTHER DAY!)

More of THAT please!  (Well, more senseless DEATHS at least, less Alaric, he’s snoozy . . .)

Let’s not forget that tonight’s episode title was modeled after one of my favorite films . . .

“You can’t handle the TRUTH!”

More of THAT Please!

And, as if that wasn’t enough, we got Marissa Cooper’s Mom from The O.C.!

Much more of HER please!

(By the way, if there was ever an Emmy award for “Best Performance as a Slutty Trashtastic Kind-of-Bitchy Mom,” Melinda Clarke would win every year hands down.  Has she been typecast?  Absolutely!  But that doesn’t make her any less fabulous!)

So, without further adieu, lets take a peek at what happened on VD’s A Few Good Men . . .

A Few Good Lays . . .

If you didn’t think I was going to somehow find a way to include this picture in my recap AGAIN, you clearly don’t know me AT ALL . . .

When we first reunite with Damon, he is getting it on with a trio of drunken, horny, and “compulsed” Tri Delts (a REAL sorority, by the way, . . . I smell a Defamation Lawsuit!).  We quickly get the impression that this has been how Damon has been spending his hiatus time.  You GO DAMON!  The way I see it, the best way to get over an undead Vampire Bitch, who you’ve searched for, for about 100 years of your life, only to find out she DOESN’T want to be found by YOU, is to get UNDER someone else . . . or rather, in this case,  SOMEONE ELSES. 

Might I suggest the cast of Gossip Girl, DamonThey always seem up for a good roll in the hay  . . .

A Few Good Bings . . .

By the way, I found this picture on GOOGLE!   Put that in your pipe and smoke it, BING!

One of the things I am NOT liking about The Vampire Diaries of late, is its already burgeoning sell-out tendencies.  Seriously folks, how many times is our favorite television show going to double as an hour-long commercial for a certain search engine website that shall remain nameless? 

Is this supposed to be our punishment for having DVRs?  What’s next?  A discussion about herpes pills or “feminine hygiene” products?

“Aunt Jenna? Did you ever get that ‘not-so-fresh’ feeling?”

Anyway, shameless product placement aside, Elena and her Auntie are doing a little internet research to find out some important intel on Elena’s birth mother.  In our last episode, we learned that Elena’s birth mom and Alaric’s “deceased” wife shared the same name, Isobel.  This week, we learned that they are the same person (and are both played by Mia Kirschner)

“What can I say?  I get around . . .”

Elena and Auntie come across some old high school yearbook pics online of Elena’s mommy and her cheerleading friend, Trudie (Amanda Detmer), who, conveniently, currently lives just a hop, skip, and a jump away from Elena.  Stefan, hoping to protect Elena from learning about Damon’s involvement in Isobel’s disappearance, tells Elena to leave Trudie alone.  But Elena goes to see her, anyway.  Trudie, initially, seems friendly enough (if  you consider people who don’t invite you inside their home, spike your tea with vervain, hoping it will make you sick, and text cold-blooded killers to inform them of your arrival, friendly).  But, when Elena questions Trudie about her knowledge of vampires, the latter becomes really unwelcoming, and asks her to leave ASAP.

Unfortunately, for Trudie, she never gets the chance to send Elena the neighborly “I’m sorry for being a bitch to you,” apple pie, she would have sent, otherwise . . .

Always helpful in times like these . . .

 . . . because the killer she so brilliantly texted, comes to her house, just moments after Elena has left, pushes her down the steps, breaks her neck, and kills her.  Talk about UN-neighborly! (SENSELESS DEATH # 1)

A Few Good Boyfriends (with Moms that Hate You)

In other news, Matt’s and Caroline’s still-new relationship hits a bit of a road block when Matt’s Mommy (Melinda Clarke) returns to town and tells Caroline, in no uncertain terms, that she HATES Caroline’s guts.  So much for getting Mommy Dearest to fork over the cash for the upcoming nuptials . . .  ( SOMEONE’S going to be registering for their wedding gifts at the Dollar Store, in a few years . . .)

A Few Good Bachelor Brawls . . .

At the Town’s Founder’s Day Fundraiser, both Damon and Alaric put their very nicely-sculpted bodies up for auction.  (Is it too late for me to move to this town?)  Proving himself to be an even bigger D-Bag than we initially thought (but, a HOT d-bag, mind you), Damon inexplicably calls out Alaric during his bachelor speech, revealing, in no uncertain terms, how he gave Alaric’s wife the best lay of her life before she “died.”  (And you just KNOW that all that “sexual prowess” talk upped Damon’s auction price considerably . . .)

“It was for a GOOD CAUSE!”

Elena puts two and two together, and figures out that Damon had a hand in her birth mommy’s “death.”  She dashes out of the party in tears, with both Stefan and Damon at her heels.  (Must be nice, having hot guys always chasing you like that . . .)  Say what you will about Damon, but the look on his face when Elena confronts him about his murdering her mother is genuinely heartbreaking.  He really does have a soft spot for her . . . (swoon).

Later, Cold Blooded Killer Guy (CBK Guy for short), who Stefan instantly recognizes as being under vampire compulsion, warns Elena to stop looking for her mother.  Having delivered this Very Important Message,  CBK Guy walks into oncoming traffic and gets mowed down by a car.  (SENSELESS DEATH #2)  Stefan appears genuinely concerned for the zombie’s well being.  However,  Elena sees the death as an opportunity to get a free cell phone  . . . so she snatches the corpse’s.

“What?  Mine was running low on minutes!”

Back at home, Elena picks up her brand new cell phone and dials the last number called on it.  When a woman picks up, asking if “everything went as planned,” Elena utters “Isobel” into the phone.  The woman hangs up . . .

A Few Good Pieces of Jewelry

“They sure like their bling on this show . . .”

Back at La Casa de Damon, Alaric confronts the vampire about porking, and subsequently forking, his  loving wife.  As it turns out, Isobel was somewhat of a “vampire scholar” when she and Alaric were together back at Duke.  Isobel had traveled to Mystic Falls, convinced that she would be able to prove the existence of vampires there.  That was when she met, and screwed, Damon.  Damon and Alaric tussle for a bit, and Damon appears to puncture his lung, killing him.  (SENSELESS . . . SORT OF  . . .  DEATH #3) 

 Saintly Stefan then arrives on the scene.

I just figured it was high time that I included HIS pic in this recap.  I’m nothing, if not, fair, ladies . . .

Damon admits to Stefan that he didn’t kill Isobel, but rather, turned her into a vampire, because . . . “she was begging for it.”  (Spoken like a true rapist, Damon . . . it’s a good thing I like you . . . otherwise, you’d be dead to me, right now.  Oh, but wait . . . you ARE dead . . . so, nevermind.)

 Left alone with corpse Alaric, Stefan is alarmed to learn that Alaric is not-so-much dead.  At first, Stefan fears that Damon turned him into a vampire . . . and we all know THAT hasn’t worked out too well in the past.

R.I.P. Doubly Dead Vampire Vicki

And yet, Alaric explains that, before she disappeared, Isobel gave him this Big Ugly Ass Ring to protect him from the occult.  Because Alaric was wearing it when Damon “killed” him, it allowed him to “live.” 

So, let me get this straight, on this show we NOW have . . .

(1) a lapiz lazuli ring that vampires wear to allow them to go out in sunlight;

(2) a vervain necklace that HUMANS wear to prevent vampires from controlling their minds;

(3) a medallion that WITCHES wear to do spells and hurt mean vampires; and

(4) a Big Ugly Ass Ring that ALARIC wears to keep vampires from killing his boring butt.

This show is starting to look like the Home Shopping Network . . .

In the last moments of the show, we learn that Vampire Anna and her recently rescued Mommy, Vampire Crystal, are having a little Undead Reunion for fellow Tomb escapees at some house in Mystic Falls (including this unnamed hot African American vampire dude with gorgeous eyes, that I wouldn’t mind seeing again).  Could THEY be the ones behind that Cold Blooded Killer guy who did in Isobel’s high school bud, Un-neighborly Trudie?

Tune in next week, to find out.  See ya then, bloodsuckers!

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