Friday, September 24, 2010

The Vampire Diaries "Bad Moon Rising" Review

Maybe this show isn't for me, after all. As I watched various episodes from last season or read about the episodes, I wasn't exactly on board with the show. The finale last year earned great reviews. I watched it. The finale did nothing for me, really. My return to the CW has gone as smoothly as Ken Griffey Jr.'s tenure with the Mariners this season. I even fell asleep during the fourth and fifth acts of the latest episode. Of course, it was about 2:25AM when I reached the fourth act of "Bad Moon Rising."

I thought "Bad Moon Rising" fell flat in every area. The exposition was very clunky, the werewolves story is very weak and the teenage melodrama was at a Dawson's Creek level. On Dawson's Creek, the melodrama was very annoying because the teenage characters were self-involved and their lives were relatively stress-free so it made sense they'd blow everything out of proportion. Dawson Leery himself was the worst. I draw the parallel with Dawson's Creek because TVD showrunner, Kevin Williamson, created Dawson's Creek and set the standard for overwrought melodrama.

In one of the episode's stories, Damon, Elena and Alaric went to Duke University to read the research Isobel collected about Mystic Falls. The three wanted to learn more about werewolves after Mason Lockwood's werewolf-ness during the fight at the carnival. The story allowed Elena and Damon to be alone and, possibly, repair their friendship after Damon's attempted murder of her brother. For a vampire who is 164 years old, Damon acted more like Pacey Witter than Dawson Leery. Yes, the Dawson Creek comparisons will continue. Damon continued to be a smart-ass for awhile before he let his guard down and decided that honesty might work with Elena. Damon found information for Elena to use about Katherine and doppelgangers. Elena thanked him; however, the friendship is far from fixed. Elena hates Damon for what he intended to do with Jeremy. Damon even gave a tearful confession about how he didn't see the ring and thought he actually killed Jeremy. Damon admitted he couldn't bear the thought of Elena gone from his life. Well, Elena told him that he's lost her forever. THAT is the kind of melodrama I am speaking of.

Nina Dobrev and Ian Somerhalder have great chemistry. I think the writing fell flat and the motivations behind these two characters to explain their actions. The writers wanted to get to a place where Damon could say Elena is more similar to Katherine than Elena wants to acknowledge. Elena used Damon to get info on Katherine, but Damon also used her. The problem is, I didn't realize this was going on until the two characters said it nor did I think Elena was Katherine-esque.

Meanwhile, Stefan began helping Caroline control her vampire-ness. This story reminded me of the Dawson/Jen story from season two of the show. Dawson and Jen go to a party. Dawson wants Jen to know that she's better than where she's at. Dawson becomes self-righteous and judgmental. Stefan's much less self-righteous and judgmental than Dawson Leery. The two stories had things in common though. Stefan continues to remind Caroline that she can't let her vampiric nature take over. The two end up at a party. There was even a bit of dialogue when Stefan tells Caroline that he should've walked away from Elena a long time ago because the vampire stuff could be troublesome. But he can't walk away from Elena because she's Elena. Shades of Dawson and Joey Potter but at least the two haven't broken up yet. Dawson's Creek enjoyed telling the viewers that Dawson and Joey were soulmates even though the two were barely together in six seasons.

A relationship that did end is Caroline and Matt because Matt tired of his girlfriend's craziness. Katherine showed up at the end of the episode to recruit Caroline as a teammate, I suppose, in whatever plan she has. Embrace Caroline as a badass vampire, show. I'm not a fan of her as a mopey teenager who happens to need blood to survive.

And the werewolf story fell flat on its face. The backstory is nonsense as is the idea that they are a threat to vampires.

If only former Dollhouse writer Andrew Chambliss' name wasn't on this episode because this episode was awful. Chambliss comes from the school of Joss Whedon. Tim Kring might've taught him bad habits though. Oh that's a cheap shot because I hated HEROES. The bulk of the blame probably goes to the entire writer's room for breaking a very poor episode.


Unbreakable Written By M. Night Shyamalan


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About The Foot

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Originally, I titled the blog Jacob's Foot after the giant foot that Jacob inhabited in LOST. That ended. It became TV With The Foot in 2010. I wrote about a lot of TV.