29 December 2011

True Blood S4 E8 "Spellbound"

Spoilers Ahead

The post-holidays are upon us and with that comes a return to real life. Well, we knew it had to happen sooner or later. But what better way to welcome the new year than with hot vampires? You could do a lot worse.

Let's get the non-vampire events out of the way...

While Alcide is still unsure that the Shreveport werewolf pack is the one for him, Debbie is more than ready to settle down. Even Marcus is impressed with him when he steps in to stop a fight between two of the younger members. Speaking of Marcus, he's instructed the weres to keep out of the vampire-witch conflict, mainly because he's sure the vampires will win and--much as they all hate to admit it--weres are no match for vamps. This prompts Debbie to make Alcide promise to stay away from Sookie because Sookie comes with vampires.

Elsewhere, Sam goes to see Luna and, with the help of her young daughter, manages to finagle an invite for dinner. They're both still upset about what Tommy did but she's at least starting to acknowledge that it wasn't Sam's fault. As they're having dinner suddenly Marcus barges in. Remember when Luna said her ex was a psycho werewolf? Yeah. He's less than impressed that "his" woman is hanging out with a shifter (but aren't Luna and Emma shifters?) and that his daughter really likes said shifter. When Luna threatens to call his parole officer if he causes trouble he decides he's going to make Sam pay. Sigh. Why can't people just get along?

Meanwhile Tommy, having been banished by Sam, breaks into Maxine's and steals some of her personal items. Then he shifts into Maxine and meets with the representative of the gas company that wants to buy the leasing rights to Maxine's land. Tommy has to be the world's worst bargainer but he does get a small cheque from the guy. At least enough to get him out of Bon Temps. Mind you, he makes it as far as the woods before he collapses, sick from the shift.

You'd think with everything else going on there wouldn't be time for anything more. And yet... Terry and Arlene have to bring baby Mikey in with them to work. As they argue about keeping an eye on him the ghost lady shows up and starts singing to Mikey. Suddenly Lafayette shows up and sees her. And she sees him as well. Later as Lafayette sleeps at home the ghost lady shows up. We're treated to a flashback/dream in which we see her before she was a ghost. Once upon a time she was a happy new mother bringing home a doll (the creepy one that now belongs to Mikey) to her baby son. Unfortunately the baby's father--a married white man--has taken it upon himself to make it so no one will ever know about the child or his affair with a "negresse" (her word, but I think there's something sad and elegant about it). As she begs to see her baby one last time Lafayette wakes and the ghost possesses him. Now that he's been taken over by the ghost lady, Lafayette ambles over to the Bellefleur place and grabs Mikey while everyone else is asleep. It's hard not to feel sorry for the ghost woman.

As if all that wasn't enough, there's still plenty more happening with the vampires and witches. If you'll recall the last episode, Jessica--under Antonia's spell--had just thrown open Bill's front doors to greet the sun. Jason had been running to save her but got held up by one of Bill's guards (I guess there's such a thing as too much security). Just as Jessica starts turning into a crispy critter Jason tackles her. He manages to shut the doors with his foot but then he has to contend with a furious, out-of-control vampire.

Jessica's about to sink her fangs into Jason's neck when the witches end the spell. She returns to her senses and then kisses Jason in gratitude for saving her. She then immediately apologizes but they both end up kissing each other. Disturbingly they keep kissing as Bill calls out for her despondently, thinking she's dead.

Eventually they manage to break apart and Jason carries her downstairs where Bill is relieved to see her still alive. Unfortunately there's a chance the witches will redo the spell so Jason has to silver Jessica all over again, even more heavily than before (ouch) so that they can be safe until nightfall. Bill and Jason also make a deal that Jason won't report the dead guard in the cell (Jessica killed him in order to escape but she doesn't remember) if Bill will overlook the guard outside whom Jason shot in the shoulder in order to get to Jessica.

Once it is safe and Jessica has healed and gone home, Hoyt is thrilled to see her. She's not quite as happy. She tells him she wants to move out and he immediately starts crying, whining and even begging her to stay. She's getting increasingly annoyed with him and when he claims he'll die if she leaves she obliges and kills him. Yeah, you probably shouldn't say things like that to vampires. Outside Jason is waiting for her in his truck. He thinks she looks hot spattered with blood and want to have sex. Right now. He also wants her to bite him while they're having sex. Jessica once again is happy to oblige.

And then she wakes up.

But maybe reality is worse than her dream. When Jess really does get home Hoyt doesn't even acknowledge her. She tells him that she loves him but she wants to break up. There's definitely no crying or whining from him. Instead he gets angry, shouts at her and says all kinds of really hurtful things (she doesn't deserve him, he wants someone who can give him daylight and kids...) Finally he tells her to get the fuck out and revokes her invitation. Clearly Jessica is not the monster in this relationship. And it sucks because they were such a good couple in the beginning. I think I need to go listen to some country music.

Jason, meanwhile, has gone back to work, meeting Andy at the scene where Beulah Carter, secret vampire, burned in the sun. In the throes of his V addiction Andy is actually tempted to lick up the remains. In other words he's not much different from any other addict. Bill shows up too, making a statement on camera (using his glamouring skills) about how Beulah's death was a suicide, a not uncommon experience among vampires with all the anti-vampire sentiment running rampant these days.

After work Jason gets paid a visit by Jessica. She tells him she broke up with Hoyt. Again, things don't exactly go as smoothly as in her dream. He gets upset because Hoyt is his bestie and then he revokes her invitation. Poor Jessica. Jason then tries to distract himself with pushups, forgetting that Jessica shares a blood bond with him and can feel what he feels. No use pretending you're not into her, my friend.

Eric made it through the witches' assault more or less okay, although his silver-inflicted injuries are extensive enough that he needs real blood to heal (True Blood just won't cut it this time). Of course Sookie offers her own neck (there are other arteries and veins, you know). He ends up offering her his own blood, as well, so that they can be "one." As one they both enjoy some mutual ultra-vivid hallucinations, ending up in a bed in the snowy woods. Not unappealing.

Later as they lie in bed, Eric suggests they run away together. He really doesn't want his memories back. If it were me I think I'd take that offer but Sookie doesn't want to leave her home or to leave Bill to die (I guess she's got a point there). She also tells Eric that he's a warrior and he would never forgive himself for running from a fight. Sigh--stupid practicality intrudes again.

But I think Bill will need all the help he can get. As Antonia watches the news she's livid that all their effort only got one vampire killed. Tara has the sudden realization that they're not actually protecting themselves--they're indiscriminately killing vampires. Antonia is perfectly okay with that--her intention is to wipe out all vampires everywhere. Bill's at least trying to work something out. He calls Antonia (I'm not sure how he knows where to find her) and apologizes on behalf of all vampires for what was done to her. He believes there can be peace between them if they're both willing. She's not exactly convinced but finally Antonia agrees to meet him--alone and unarmed--at midnight in the cemetery at Bon Temps.

As Bill prepares at home for the meeting with Antonia, Sookie and Eric arrive to join the fight. He reluctantly agrees to let Sookie take part before heading to the cemetery. When Antonia arrives she's already hostile and neither of them is surprised that they brought back up (although Sookie is shocked to see Tara on Antonia's side). Bill promises that his vampires will leave the witches alone (under penalty of death) if Antonia will lift the spells on Eric and Pam. Antonia points out that the vampires he wants her to help are the ones who've already harmed the witches. Will he kill them once she lifts the spells? As Bill is giving his word that the vampires will leave the witches alone Sookie hears Antonia silently casting a spell. She warns Bill and suddenly more vampires arrive.

I don't know what sets him off but out of nowhere Eric decides to rip the heart out of one of the witches. Sookie is shocked (like she didn't know what he was capable of). Antonia casts a thick fog and everything descends into chaos. Some are killing whoever they find. Sookie is running around useless. Bill releases every witch unharmed as he searches for Antonia. Tara kills a vampire and looks sickened by what she's done. But then Pam finds her and is ready to end her--until Bill shows up and orders Pam to never harm Tara or he'll personally execute her. Pam takes off and Tara is just dumbfounded.

As Eric feasts on a dead witch and Bill is confronting more of them, Sookie gets shot. Both men sense it and in that moment of vulnerability Bill gets silvered and Eric is put under Antonia's spell much as Luis was. Luckily for Sookie Alcide broke his promise to Debbie and comes to her rescue when he hears her scream. Unluckily for possibly both of them, Debbie sees Alcide do it. Just as things are looking as though they can't possibly get any worse the camera pans slowly out until everything is obscured by the fog.

I'm not worried for Sookie (and not just because she's the main character) but I am concerned about what's going to happen to all the vampires. Who would have thought a small coven of witches could turn out to be so much trouble? And now that Debbie's aware of Alcide's betrayal, who knows what she's capable of? Also, are they completely done with the fairies on the show? Because if so that was pretty damn anticlimactic.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale humans with red-rimmed eyes and long, snakelike fangs that extend or retract at will (and also when the vampire is excited). They cry blood. A dead vampire is a mass of stringy, bloody bits

Strengths: Super strength and speed. Fast healing (faster with real blood). Ability to glamour (hypnotize) humans.

Weaknesses: Witchcraft, silver, the sun. When vampires haven't properly rested at night they get the "bleeds" (bleeding from their eyes and nose).

Mythology: Once a human has consumed a vampire's blood, there will always be a bond between the two. On the other hand, vampire blood is also a powerful and illegal drug that many humans become addicted to. A vampire needs an invitation to enter a home (and they can't legally own property); their invitation can also be revoked, forcing them to leave immediately.

Sound Bites

Marcus: [re: vampires] Those dead fuckers are hardcore. They will kill you and not blink an eye.

Sookie: I'm trusting you, Eric.
Eric: I won't betray you. Ever.
Sookie: I may remind you of that someday.

Hoyt: [to Jessica] Maybe my mama was right all along--maybe God really does hate fangs. And you know what? So do I.

Eric: I just want to be with you and only you. Forever.
Sookie: There's no such thing as forever.

True Blood, Season 4 Episode 8 "Spellbound." Written by Alan Ball. Directed by Daniel Minahan. From HBO.

30 November 2011

Being Human (UK) S1 E4

Spoilers Ahead

Monsters and mobs go hand in hand. I mean, what's the point of being supernatural if you don't have the occasional run-in with villagers and their pitchforks? Well, we've got the mob this episode but they're going after the wrong monster. It's an interesting twist and makes for the perfect plot device.

Episode 4 starts off with Mitchell narrating and having something of an existential crisis. I think we can all relate to his concerns about belonging. But it's particularly poignant for our three protagonists as George returns home after the full moon scratched up, wearing women's clothes, and scaring off the normal people. As for Annie, what is she if not the ultimate outsider, continuing to exist but unable to fully interact with anyone else? You really understand the pain and unhappiness inherent in what otherwise seem like pretty cool circumstances (powers, immortality, superhuman strength...)

Enraged about Herrick taking Lauren back last episode Mitchell goes to pay him a visit. Herrick shuts Mitchell up with a lecture on how badly he's treated Lauren, abandoning her after turning her and not taking care of her as he should have. He points out that Lauren's only with him (Herrick) because Mitchell isn't taking responsibility for her. Considering Mitchell treats Herrick like he's the devil incarnate, Herrick is pretty patient. You really don't get a sense that he's evil at all--just that he cares about Mitchell and is loyal to his fellow vampires. He finally dismisses Mitchell by telling him to go do his thing (that is, try to be human) and when he's done to come home as there will always be a place for him. Makes you wonder why Mitchell is so adamantly opposed to all things vampire and Herrick in particular.

When he gets home Mitchell finds Annie stress cleaning after her realization that the man she loved is also the one who killed her. More disturbing than the cleaning, though, is Annie's new--and uncontrollable--skills as a poltergeist. Every time she's set off dishes go flying, glass explodes, fixtures fall from the ceiling. Fun all around! And speaking of stressing George has a date with Nina and is panicking, not only about what to wear but also that she might just prefer the wolf (which was on the verge of emerging the last time they saw each other) to him.

Things start really getting interesting when Mitchell intervenes as two boys bully another one. The bullies give him attitude and he scares them off with his all-black vampire eyes. In the process he makes friends with the bullied boy, Bernie, and his mom, Fleur. Charmed by his defending her son (and undoubtedly by his smouldering good looks), Fleur invites Mitchell in for tea. Later she lets Mitchell take Bernie out for the day, which I find a bit weird. Fine--she doesn't believe children should be wrapped in cotton wool (agreed) but letting a man you only just met take your kid out for the day--is it just me or is that asking for trouble? Come on--even Mitchell asks her if she's sure that's a good idea!

Not that he has any ulterior motive other than just hanging out with a nice kid who reminds him of himself at that age. They bond and bowl and all is going well until Lauren shows up. Mitchell pulls her away angrily but Lauren claims she's only there to say goodbye. She says she and the other vampires got the message and that they're going to respect his decision and leave him alone. Although he still worries about her his relief becomes increasingly evident. Especially when Bernie falls and cuts himself and Mitchell doesn't react at all to the blood. Maybe he can do this human thing, after all.

To celebrate he brings Bernie home to meet George and pig out on junk food. At one point Bernie notices a Laurel and Hardy statue and asks who they are. Aghast at the ignorance of youth Mitchell tells him to run up to his room and grab the first Laurel and Hardy dvd he sees. Mitchell promises he'll laugh more than he ever has before.

The next morning Bernie puts the movie on but it's clear he did not end up with a Laurel and Hardy dvd. Instead he's watching Lauren's vampire porn. And then Fleur sees it. She shows up at Mitchell's enraged and starts telling the entire neighbourhood that he's a perv and a pedophile. Mitchell tries to explain what happened but by then no one's listening. All the neighbours start turning against him (and by extension, George), spraying graffiti on the house, egging it, picketing, throwing garbage, refusing to let them shop in their stores, spitting on them and worse.

As if things aren't already bad enough for Mitchell, Herrick shows up at work in an official capacity (for anyone who's forgotten, he's a cop) to see him about the serious allegations made by his neighbours. Herrick is more than willing to make this go away and before he leaves he has Mitchell reminiscing about the good old days when they would deal with problems like this vampire-style. Mitchell claims he doesn't want Herrick's help but it's hard to believe he really wants nothing to do with his fellow vamps. It's pretty obvious Herrick doesn't believe it either.

Events come to a head when Bernie sneaks over to apologize to Mitchell for everything that's happened. As Mitchell is reassuring him that none of it is his fault, one of the more obnoxious neighbours intervenes. Soon the mob has arrived and Mitchell is starting to get pissed off. Meanwhile Fleur starts shouting from across the street for Bernie to come home now. Poor Bernie is clearly torn but then he starts running for home, somehow not seeing the car that's coming toward him. Mitchell sees it, though, and runs. Unfortunately he gets there a second too late and they're both hit by the car. But only Mitchell gets up again. Fleur and Mitchell are devastated. The mob just gawks.

George and Nina's relationship is really up and down this episode. At first he's relieved to find out she doesn't prefer the wolf to him when she suggests they slow things down a bit (apparently when he rocked her world last episode it was a bit much for her). But as things start going downhill with the neighbours he becomes convinced he and Mitchell will never be accepted anywhere or be able to live any kind of normal life. He becomes cold to Nina and then tells her it's over, that trouble follows him and he can't be with her anymore. Nina's not entirely convinced and she shows up at his place to tell him so. He keeps pushing her away until she finally gives up, first making sure he knows she would have listened to him.

He's determined to stay away from Nina but after Bernie is hit George goes to see her, horrified to the point of tears that he's just seen a child killed. Nina is a great support and George eventually tells her that he has secrets but he can't tell her about them yet. This prompts her to reveal her own secret--horrific scars on her abdomen (she doesn't give details, just says that people can be bastards). Their relationship seems to have found its footing and I really hope it works out for them.

While all this has been going on Annie's been having her own relationship issues. Her stress level goes off the charts when Owen shows up at the house with his new girlfriend. Annie tries her best to control her uncontrollable poltergeisting (yeah that's a word), although her efforts aren't entirely effective. After talking to the guys about the situation with the neighbours Owen is understanding but still gives them notice--they need to get out so he and Janey can move in. This about pushes Annie over the edge. Not only is she about to lose her only friends but her ex and his new girl are getting ready to step into the life that was meant to be hers. After Owen and Janie leave Annie makes a decision. She's not going to lose the guys or let Owen and Janie have the house. She's breaking with her past and to emphasize it she has a little barbecue of all her Owen-related items. Although the boys are concerned she claims she's never felt more alive. And she might just be right. When Bernie is hit Annie comes outside to see what all the commotion is and is shocked that people can see and touch her. Does anyone else see ghostly revenge on the horizon?

Bernie ends up on life support, although he's fading fast. Fleur is blaming herself when Mitchell shows up. Probably breaking every rule there is he tells her he's a vampire and, after offering some proof, tells her he can turn Bernie to save him. Fleur is disbelieving and then torn, unsure whether that's the right thing to do. Mitchell responds that she has to make that decision. The next scene is Fleur sobbing over Bernie's body while Mitchell sits outside. From there he meets Fleur at the train station. She's got a bag and is leaving town. She lets Mitchell know that she told the neighbours she was wrong about him and he's actually okay. Whether that'll make a difference remains to be seen. But Mitchell's focus is elsewhere, particularly when Bernie shows up looking pale and carrying a bag of his own. He and Fleur are happy to see each other again but when Bernie tries to thank Mitchell for saving him, Mitchell says "don't" and walks away. So if he thought it was such a horrible thing to do why did he do it? Especially when the next moment Bernie tells his mom he's hungry and the formerly sweet kid suddenly has a tinge of menace about him. In this moment it becomes all-too clear just how difficult his and Fleur's lives are going to be. Not just difficult but dangerous.

The episode ends with Mitchell going to see Herrick. With just two words ("I'm in.") he turns his back on his humanity and joins again with the vampires. Is it out of self-hatred, disgust with humans, an overwhelming need to belong, or any number of other reasons? I don't know but I'm also not sure how long it'll last.

I like this episode a lot. It somehow manages to show the difficulties of life as a human and as a "monster." No matter what it's not easy and there's no clear winner in terms of which is preferable. So how does one decide which path to follow? Maybe Mitchell's right--maybe it's just a matter of finding where you belong. Or maybe we're all a bit of both. Whatever the case I'm not too sure one can survive without the other.

Fang Files

Appearance: Human, until the vampire emerges--then pure black eyes. A vampire's image cannot be captured. Vampires are cold to the touch.

Strengths: Not easy to hurt, quick healing.

Weaknesses: Blood lust, cruelty to humans.

Mythology: Ideally a maker should take responsibility for their "children," helping them through the transition and teaching them about being a vampire. To make a vampire a human must be "snatched" at the moment of death.

Sound Bites

Mitchell: You can piss your whole life away wondering who you might be. It's when you've worked out who you are that you can really start to live.

Nina: [Re: taking it slow with George] Don''t get me wrong, I'm not suggesting we wear those weird chastity rings--you know, American kids 'we're not shagging 'cause we're mentals'...

Lauren: [to Mitchell] God, it's always about the blood with you, isn't it? Like that's all there is. There's a whole dark and beautiful world and you're obsessing about what we eat.

George: We're not fit to live among decent people.
Mitchell: It's a good job we don't, then.

Fleur: If you were me, would you choose that life for your son? Because I don't see much happiness in you, Mitchell.

Being Human (UK), Season 1 Episode 4. Written by Brian Dooley. Directed by Alex Pillai. From the BBC.

25 November 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E8 "Ordinary People"

Spoilers Ahead

This just might be my most-hated episode of The Vampire Diaries. I don't know what they were thinking when they put this hot mess together. Here's some free advice for the writers: Vikings don't have English accents and they do not have Biblical names. Furthermore you're telling us there's no archeological evidence for an entire Viking village in the US from only 1000 years ago? Congratulations on coming up with one of the stupidest story premises I've seen in a long time.

So "Ordinary People" starts off with Alaric, Elena and Damon in the caves under the Lockwood estate. Alaric shows Elena the glyphs and explains that they tell a story before he points out that the Viking runes (which he can apparently read) include the names Rebekah, Elijah, Michael and Niklaus. See, I'd have no problem if the characters ended up changing their names over time but the fact that their names appear in runes means those are their original names and how can you expect me to believe any of this stuff if you can't get something as simple as names right? You show me evidence of a Viking named Rebekah or Elijah and I will give you a million dollars. Seriously. But Alaric, Elena and Damon have other things on their minds. Alaric's managed to interpret that werewolves lived in Mystic Falls long before there was such a thing as Mystic Falls, while Damon figured out that Michael is the Original dad.

We're also treated to a series of flashbacks, starting with one of Rebekah and Klaus in the cave as she carves the runes. Why? Who knows? I guess there wasn't much to do back then. We also find out that they and their siblings are all afraid of their father. We get a sense of why when we later see the miserable bastard chewing out Klaus for nothing.

Back in the present Alaric takes photos of all the glyphs so he can study them at home. As they're discussing their next move Elena spars with Damon (let's just say she's no Buffy). Elena finally decides they need to talk to Rebekah to find out more about Michael and the Originals. And after a few threats Rebekah is more than willing.

Rebekah tells a truly ridiculous tale. Apparently her parents, back in the land of the Vikings, lost a child to plague and decided they needed to take their family someplace safe. That safe place was the new world (already populated by werewolves) where everyone was healthy (they apparently travelled there with the help of a witch.) First of all, you don't get plagues in sparsely populated areas. I don't think plague was a real issue for the Vikings. Second of all losing children was commonplace back then. Yes it was sad but people were used to it. Running away from the dangers of life wouldn't occur to anyone. Thirdly I can't believe a Viking would run away from anything. But Rebekah goes on. She adds that her family lived in peace with the weres, retreating once a month to the caves while the wolves did their thing. That was, until the night Klaus and youngest brother Henrik decided to go out and watch and *gasp shock* Henrik ended up dead. Well, that was it--no more friendly relations with the weres. Because, you know, it was their fault the kid got himself killed. And the family couldn't go anywhere else because Michael was too proud to run (except from disease, apparently). No, Michael decided they had to use witchcraft to make themselves meaner and stronger than the weres so they could kick their collective ass. Really? When their witch refused to do something so against nature, mom Esther (another fine Viking name), also a witch, stepped up.

Although it goes against everything witches stand for Esther agreed to work a spell to change her family into the first vampires. She didn't include herself in the spell, however, because you can't be a witch and a vampire. Of course now that they've said that unequivocally you know a vampire witch is going to show up at some point. By the way, Esther was also the Original Witch. Once the spell was out of the way Michael fed his kids blood and killed them. Then when they woke up he brought them fresh blood in the form of a girl to complete the transformation. Of course there were consequences, being the weaknesses we all know about (see Fang Files).

But wait, the worst was yet to come. When Klaus killed his first human it triggered his werewolf gene. Of course that made him Michael's greatest shame. So Esther put the curse on him and turned her back on him. But Michael still couldn't deal. He slaughtered half the village and then killed Esther in front of Klaus. From there the family was scattered, although Klaus, Rebekah and Elijah stayed long enough to bury their mom and vow to always stick together.

Elsewhere Damon has decided to amuse himself by releasing Stefan from the cell. He's not a big fan of the Lexi rehab plan so he's going to try another way. It's not a particularly subtle way as they head to some random bar where they indulge in whiskey, blood, and dancing on tables. Damon claims he wants Stefan to remember what freedom feels like so he'll get mad and fight back against Klaus. Before they can really explore that idea Michael shows up. How he found them considering they don't even really know where they are, who knows? He starts questioning Stefan about where Klaus is but because Stefan is compelled he can't give anything away. So Michael decides to motivate him by shoving his hand into Damon's chest and threatening to rip out his heart (by the way, this counts as impaling if you're playing my drinking game!) At first Stefan still insists he can't tell Michael anything but just when Michael is about to perform amateur heart surgery Stefan suddenly admits he can lure Klaus back to Mystic Falls. Good enough--as soon as Klaus shows up, Michael will kill him. And if Stefan can't get Klaus back then Michael will kill him.

While Elena is busy with Rebekah and Damon is busy with Stefan, Alaric has Bonnie bring him the necklace that wouldn't die. With the necklace he can confirm that one of the recurring glyphs is the symbol for witch. Once Elena is done with Rebekah she joins Alaric and helps fill in the blanks in the glyphs. And--OMG--she realizes that it wasn't Michael who killed Esther--it was Klaus!!!!! When she runs back to Rebekah with photos and a breathless revelation the vampire first gets angry and then starts crying. Because somehow it never occurred to any of them that Klaus might have been lying about Michael killing their mom. I can sympathize with Rebekah, though--this episode made me want to cry too.

There is a satisfying moment, though, when Stefan mouths off to Damon and Damon handily kicks Stefan's ass. As Gordon Ramsay would say, well thank fuck for that. The episode ends with Damon waiting on Elena's bed as she's about to settle down for the night. There's an amusing moment as she's pulling on the blanket, trying to budge it so she can get under it while Damon ignores her and keeps talking. But then she slides in anyway, tells him they might have Rebekah on their side, and mentions that she thinks Damon will be the one to save Stefan from himself--not because Stefan loves Elena but because he loves Damon. Aww. Then she falls asleep under Damon's watchful eye (you know, when the Angel[us] would watch Buffy as she slept it was considered creepy. Now it's the romantic thing to do...)

I really can't stand shows that make it up as they go along. Yeah maybe that helps with the element of surprise but mostly it encourages the element of idiocy. Come up with a long-term story outline, makes sure it all makes sense, execute. How hard it that? At least this show still has Damon. He's the only thing that keeps me coming back.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and prominent fangs.

Strengths: Difficult to kill, quick healing. Super strength and speed. The ability to compel humans (Originals can also compel other vampires).

Weaknesses: Sunlight (unless wearing a piece of daywalker jewellery). Magic. Pointy objects. Blood lust. Need an invitation to enter a private residence. Vervain. Heightened emotions.

Mythology: Originally there was no way to permanently kill an Original (especially Klaus) but now it seems there might be a way (involving a stake made from the white oak tree). Vampires can turn off their emotions/humanity at will. In order to be turned a human needs to die with vampire blood in their system; to complete the transformation they need to feed from a human.

Sound Bites

Damon: [re: the cave glyphs] Yeah, it's the Lockwood Diaries, Pictionary style.

Rebekah: [to Elena] If you wake Michael we are all doomed.

Elena: [re: Stefan] How does he look?
Damon: Pasty and pouty.

Stefan: Damon, you are worse than Elena. Getting me drunk, brotherly bonding. What, you think I'll break down and you can pull me back from the edge, is that it?
Damon: I happen to like the edge, Stefan. Your problem is your inability to resist falling over it. You're all or nothing, man. You can't just be. Although, who am I to judge?

Rebekah: A witch is nature's servant. A vampire is an abomination of nature.

The Vampire Diaries, Season 3 Episode 8 "Ordinary People." Written by Caroline Dries and Julie Plec (based on a story by Nick Wauters). Directed by J. Miller Tobin. From The CW.

22 November 2011

True Blood S4 E7 "Cold Grey Light of Dawn"

Spoilers Ahead

It's weird: necromancer Antonia should be a more sympathetic character. After all, she was imprisoned, tortured, raped and finally burned at the stake by vampires. Her desire for vengeance is justified. And let's face it--her powers are pretty damn awesome. So why is she not only unlikable but also being portrayed as the bad guy? I guess her insistence on killing all vampires everywhere has something to do with it (nobody likes a fanatic). But even the "good" vampires on True Blood have done some pretty horrible things. This is all getting too confusing. Do I root for the vampires or for the wronged witch? Can't we all just get along?

Sigh.

When we last saw Antonia she had made herself comfortable inside Marnie's body (the possession thing is also a little too creepy). She had then enslaved vampire Sheriff Luis. "Cold Grey Light of Dawn" starts off with Antonia using Luis to execute the "treasonous" Katie (one of Bill's security guards who infiltrated Marnie's coven). Too bad--I kind of liked Katie. Luis is then given orders to give his King a message.

When Luis goes to see Bill he informs him that Antonia is back. Then he shoots Bill before trying to stake him. Of course Bill gets the upper hand. When he demands to know what Antonia wants, Luis says one word--"Resurrection"--before staking himself.

From there we go to Pam--still decomposing alive--as she attacks Tara and her girlfriend. Just as she's about to choke the life out of Tara she notices a group of locals watching and taking photos. Reluctantly Pam puts Tara down but promises to come back and shred her like confetti. Tara's shaken, so much so that she sends her girlfriend away claiming she doesn't want her to end up dead as well.

Depressed, alone, and granted a temporary reprieve Tara spends the night getting drunk and wandering along the side of the road. Out of nowhere Antonia shows up and gives a rousing speech about how alike she and Tara are, how they've both been used by vampires and how together they can avenge their torment and exact retribution. Of course Tara agrees to help (she has to be the most easily swayed/manipulated character on this show) and they set about recruiting more people to their cause.

Jason shows up doing some truly impressive pushups in an effort to get his mind off Jessica. Too bad his plan doesn't work out. Especially when Hoyt shows up and, after a perfunctory show of concern for Jason ("You were raped" "It's okay I'm over it" WTF?) he starts going on about how Jessica is slipping away from him and it'll kill him if he loses her.

Speaking of Jessica, she's busy being filled in by Bill on the Antonia situation. Their relationship has evolved into a rather sweet father-daughter bond (reminds me of Buffy and Giles). I want to see more of the two of them. Anyway, Bill's convinced that Antonia will reprise her last stand and lure the vampires out into the daylight so he comes up with a plan to send away as many of the Louisiana vamps as he can and to have everyone else bound with silver during the day. It's not going to be fun but it'll keep them alive.

While all this has been going on Sookie and Eric continue to have sex--in the glade, at home, the entire way from the glade to home. Don't these two get tired? They finally take a break and the pillow talk turns to whether Sookie will still want Eric if he gets his memories back. Way to ruin the moment. She's not sure that she will still want him but she wants to. I guess that's something.

No sooner do they get some clothes on than Bill shows up. They thank him for allowing their happy reunion (he looks completely miserable) and then he tells them about what's been going on. He offers Eric a secure cell at his place but Eric isn't leaving Sookie's. Bill hands them a rather large pile of silver chains and heads back home to start getting ready. He makes sure his mansion is light proof and then he silvers Jessica and himself. The silvering process looks pretty horrific, worse than we've seen it before. Bill ends up taking pity on Jess and holds off on silvering her neck.

Since the pain from the silver is so intense the vampires can't sleep and that seems to put them in a confessing mood. Jessica tells Bill that she's not sure she can love Hoyt anymore. Meanwhile Eric tells Sookie that he doesn't want his memories back--he's perfectly happy as he is with her.

Now that she's taking a break from trying to kill Tara, Pam has decided to see the doctor about a cure of some sort. Unfortunately the doctor can only clear the surface rot and keep Pam pretty--she'll still be internally decomposing. Even that temporary fix involves ripping off the external layers of skin (shudder) and taking six injections four times a day. You've got to wonder if it's really worth it. Lucky Ginger gets the task of injecting Pam, as well as covering her with silver chain mail and keeping watch over her coffin. It's so glamorous hanging out with the vampires of True Blood!

After an inspirational talk Antonia gets down to business with her fellow witches and vampire haters. As they cast the spell the vampires all start going crazy, begging to be set free to see the sun. It turns out one of Maxine's neighbours is a vamp but didn't get the memo as she bursts into flame on the front lawn.

In other happenings, after vomiting and passing out Tommy is feeling better (the doctor blames food poisoning). Once he's sure Tommy's all right Sam gives Luna a call and is shocked when she's less than friendly. He ends up going to see her in person and when she realizes he doesn't remember sleeping with her it ends up dawning on both of them that Tommy is a skinwalker. They're both sickened at the thought. Later Tommy wakes up to find Sam staring at him. Sam is enraged, not only at what Tommy did but at what he might do (like kill Sam and take his place). In his anger he starts choking Tommy but eventually backs off. Then he tells Tommy he has 2 minutes to leave forever and, just in case Tommy isn't devastated enough, Sam tells him he wishes he could forget everything about him.

Meanwhile Jesus and Lafayette decide that even the relative safety from vampires isn't enough to keep them at granddad"s (the fact that he decided to prove that Lafayette is a medium by nearly killing Jesus might have had something to do with that). But why they went back to Bon Temps isn't too clear. Lafayette goes back to work at Merlotte's like nothing's happened, which is also strange. But I guess it gives an opportunity for him to see the lady ghost hanging around Arlene's baby.

As for Debbie and Alcide, after being inducted into the Shreveport wolf pack Debbie's jealousy toward Sookie starts becoming more apparent. Alcide assures her she's the only girl for him and although she seems mollified I have a feeling the jealousy issue will be rearing its ugly head again before long.

The episode ends with Jason stopping by to see Sookie. Hearing Eric's screams she quickly explains to him what's happening. As she returns to Eric Jason starts running for Bill's. Jessica has managed to break her chains and escape from the cell. For a second it looks like Bill will stop her: he commands her as his maker to...release him. She ignores him, however, and crawls upstairs. As Jason runs toward the house he gets intercepted by one of Bill's guards. As he grapples with the guard Jess finally reaches the doors and throws them open as sun streams in.

I will not be happy if Jessica dies. She's definitely one of my favourite characters. I hope the vampires have a good plan for putting Antonia out of commission; otherwise, the silvering is going to get old fast. And despite my questions at the beginning of this post, when it comes right down to it, I always root for the vampires.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale humans with red-rimmed eyes and long, snakelike fangs that extend or retract at will (and also when the vampire is excited). A dead vampire is a mass of stringy, bloody bits.

Strengths: Super strength. Ability to glamour (hypnotize) humans. Mad skillz in the bedroom.

Weaknesses: Witchcraft/necromancy. Stakes, silver, sunlight. Lack of sleep causes "the bleeds."

Mythology: Vampire society is highly hierarchical with Kings and Queens ruling over Sheriffs and lesser vampires, and all ruled by the mysterious Authority. Vampire blood (V) is an addictive and illegal drug. If a maker orders his child to do something the child can resist but with great difficulty.

Sound Bites

Redneck 1: What the hell's the matter with her face?
Redneck 2: Show us your face!
Redneck 1: Are you sure she ain't a zombie?
Redneck 2: Oh crap, now there's zombies?
Pam: I. AM NOT. A ZOMBIE!
Redneck: That's exactly what a zombie would say!

Bill: Since when has any fanatic been held back by the improbability of their righteous mission?

Jessica: When we survive the day I am going to eat that fucking witch, starting with her face.

Antonia: Vampires are not immortal. They are only harder to kill.

True Blood, Season 4 Episode 7 "Cold Grey Light of Dawn." Written by Alexander Woo. Directed by Michael Ruscio. From HBO.

02 November 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E7 "Ghost World"

Spoilers Ahead

I propose a new drinking game: every time Damon gets impaled this season you take a shot. Hint: if you play make sure you have a designated driver on hand.

At the end of the last episode the ghost of Mason Lockwood showed up and knocked Damon out. "Ghost World" starts off with Damon strapped to a chair with a fireplace poker stuck in his chest (echoing what he did to Mason to make him a ghost in the first place) and his daywalker ring on the floor. As Damon slowly regains consciousness he immediately blames Stefan for his predicament but although Stefan is amused by the whole thing he assures Damon that he had nothing to do with it. Stefan removes the poker and releases one of Damon's hands but then walks away. Mason, seeing Damon's about to get free, throws open the curtains so the sun streams in. Crispy fried Damon ensues.

The weak excuse for a plot device this episode is the Founding Families' Illumination Night (blah blah big historical significance that's really all about vampires blah). I hope there aren't any actual towns that are this obsessed with their founding families--it must be really fun for everyone else who lives there who isn't part of that particular group. In any case as everyone helps set up for the big event Damon arrives and lets Bonnie know she screwed up the anti-Vicky spell because Mason Lockwood is apparently back and really pissed (then he leaves to tell Alaric, even though Alaric still can't stand him). Luckily Bonnie's grimoire opens on its own to the spell she needs (maybe her spells would work out a little better if she didn't keep waiting for the books to tell her which ones to use). This particular spell is to reveal "veiled matter" aka ghosts (but not to get rid of them).

Meanwhile Elena has decided that if ghost-whisperer Jeremy would talk to Lexi and find out how to help Stefan that'll solve all her problems. But never having met Lexi, Jeremy's not sure he can do it. He's probably also a little distracted by Anna, who seems permanently attached to him now (not that he's complaining). In fact, as soon as they have a minute to themselves Jeremy seizes the moment and kisses Anna, which ends up being way more romantic than anything he's ever had with Bonnie. Yay for ghost love!

Speaking of, Bonnie and Caroline end up going back to the witch house to perform the spell (even though the witches are all gone Bonnie decides the house is a good place to work in peace). As Bonnie gets into the spell suddenly her Grams appears. But she's not the only ghost who shows up. Elena walks in on Anna and Jeremy (and sees Anna); Mason confronts Damon and Alaric; and Lexi arrives to kick Stefan's ass. Grams tells Bonnie that when she sent Vicky away the witch helping Vicky on the other side decided to take advantage of the situation and wedge the door between worlds open. Now any ghost with unfinished business can get through. Grams is there to help Bonnie restore the balance (witches and their balancing) by destroying the other witch's talisman aka Elena's necklace aka Rebekah's necklace. That way the ghosts will be sent back and the witch won't continue to be able to work magic on both sides.

Caroline calls Elena to find out where the necklace is. Elena tells her Damon has it and then tells her about Jeremy and Anna kissing. So Caroline tells Bonnie. Ah, teenagers, truly the souls of discretion. Anyway, after Elena hangs up and leaves Jeremy and Anna she runs into Lexi who's there to pick up Elena for Ripper Detox 101. Suddenly Elena isn't so eager to get rid of the ghosts. It turns out Lexi's got Stefan locked up in the vampire jail cell (where Caroline's dad tortured her). This time Lexi purges the blood lust from Stefan by somehow getting into his head and making him hallucinate that he's been starving for years (wouldn't that just make the blood lust worse, though?)

Conveniently Caroline and Bonnie can't find the talisman/necklace anywhere in Damon's room (did they actually talk to him before barging into his house? And where's Rebekah during this? Doesn't she desperately want the necklace back?) Elena asks them to hold off on sending the ghosts back so Lexi can fix Stefan. Unfortunately it turns out the tomb-vampire ghosts are also back and they still want revenge against the Founding Families (get over it already). If only they had a big Founding Families event to infiltrate so they could easily wreak their vengeance on all the gathered founders' descendants...oh wait... Jeremy and Anna are the ones who call Caroline to let her know about the tomb vampires and Caroline immediately accuses Anna of having stolen the necklace (again...Rebekah?) Anna denies it, which causes a fight between Jeremy and Caroline.

Meanwhile Lexi is telling Elena that they need to make Stefan feel something--anything--to make him see past the blood. Once they do that they can start bringing him back. Lexi's method of making Stefan feel is to stab him repeatedly with stakes. Well, that's one way to do it. It's a bit much for Elena, though, so she runs outside and meets up with Jeremy (minus Anna this time). He admits that he doesn't want to send Anna away and that he loves her and always has. But Elena tells him it's not real, that he can't love a ghost. At this point Anna reappears along with the necklace. Elena tells her she's holding Jeremy back and Anna returns the necklace. You know, this all would have made a lot more sense and been a way more interesting storyline if Rebekah had stolen the damn necklace. Once again TVD rushes the resolution.

After Elena leaves, Anna tells Jeremy that she is holding him back. She also apologizes for taking the necklace and claims that when she saw the tomb vampires she was hoping she'd find her mother. She doesn't know where Pearl is and she doesn't want to be alone anymore. Jeremy assures her he won't let her be alone--right before he runs off to give the necklace to Bonnie.

Bonnie has nothing but scorn for Jeremy when he shows up but she takes the necklace and starts the spell to destroy it (with Grams helping). It doesn't take long and then the ghosts start disappearing. Lexi tells Elena that Stefan is still in there--she just has to break through; Eleni assures Lexi she can go be at peace now. Anna finds Pearl and they have an emotional reunion before they disappear together. And Grams tells Bonnie she's proud of her before she also goes. Once they're alone Bonnie tells Jeremy to get lost--she's done with him (well, she doesn't exactly say that but it seems to be the case). After he leaves, though, a shower of sparks fly out of the fireplace and suddenly the necklace is back and in one piece. What's that wacky original witch up to now?

Once Lexi is gone Elena tells Stefan he has to fight to come back, to feel something again. Because if he doesn't he'll lose her forever (the thing is, does Stefan really care?) But in an echo of what she said to Jeremy she tells Stefan that she won't love a ghost for the rest of her life. Then she leaves him locked in the cell.

While all this is happening, Mason claims he just wants an apology from Damon. So, I guess he's had enough vengeance? Once Damon offers a halfhearted sort-of apology Mason accepts it before sharing that he might know of another way to kill Klaus (he wants to help Ty by breaking the bond between him and Klaus). Mason tells Damon to meet him at the old Lockwood cellar with a shovel. Once at the cellar they break through a wall into a secret tunnel and start looking for the supposed secret way to kill Klaus. As he's walking ahead Damon stumbles into a trap and--get the alcohol ready--gets impaled by numerous flying spears. I guess the Lockwoods really didn't want anyone to find out this secret. Because why would they want people to be able to defend themselves against unkillable vampires? Makes no sense.

Once Mason frees Damon (depales him?) they continue forward until Damon is stopped by a magical barrier. Since he can't pass through, Mason has to go on alone. Just when Mason is about to tell Damon what he found he goes poof. So Damon has to call the only human he trusts besides Elena: Alaric. He's still pissed at Damon but once Damon apologizes (Ian does an excellent sheepish grin) Alaric finally relents and forgives him. I think if you're going to be friends with Damon Salvatore you have to be willing to overlook some psychopathic tendencies. Just saying. Anyway, once Alaric goes through the barrier he finds what Mason found: a room covered in glyphs. How long has it been there and how do they know it pertains to Original vampires? Also, what the hell does it mean? We don't know but neither does Alaric--I guess the fun will be in figuring it all out.

I don't know what to think about this episode. It wasn't quite as bad as some of the others this season but it was also kind of pointless. The show still doesn't have the hang of pacing and the writers take too many shortcuts. On the other hand if you played the drinking game you should be buzzed enough by now not to notice these issues. Excited about the next episode? Wish I could say the same.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and prominent fangs.

Strengths: Difficult to kill, quick healing. Super strength and speed. Apparently some vampires have the ability to get inside other vampires' heads and make them hallucinate (but it's not compulsion).

Weaknesses: Sunlight (unless wearing a piece of daywalker jewellery). Ghosts. Magic. Pointy objects. Blood lust. Rehab.

Mythology: Originally there was no way to permanently kill an Original (especially Klaus) but now it seems there might be two ways: vampire vampire-hunter Michael and a mysterious Lockwood secret. Vampires can turn off their emotions/humanity at will.

Sound Bites

Damon: Yeah, well, I don't have time for vengeful Lockwood. When I kill someone they're supposed to stay dead.

Lexi: Hi.
Stefan: You're dead.
Lexi: Yeah, well, technically so are you.

Damon: [apologizing to Mason] You're right--I didn't have to kill you. I do a lot of things I don't have to do.

Damon: Aren't you supposed to be all-knowing?
Mason: I'm a ghost not God.

Alaric: I was your friend, Damon. You shouldn't have done it in the first place.
Damon: Well, sometimes I do things I don't have to do.
Alaric: You're gonna recycle that same crap-ass apology you gave Mason Lockwood?
Damon: Yeah, well, I didn't mean it with him.

The Vampire Diaries, Season 3 Episode 7 "Ghost World." Written by Rebecca Sonnenshine. Directed by David Jackson. From The CW.

28 October 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E6 "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

Spoilers Ahead

This season definitely smells like something but I don't think it's teen spirit. And may I just thank the writers for appropriating my generation's anthem of ultimate apathy and using it for the title of an episode that revolves around a lame high school's even lamer "Spirit Squad." Kurt Cobain is rolling in his grave (then again he already does that every time Courtney Love opens her mouth). But I digress.

"Smells Like Teen Spirit" (shudder) starts with Elena and Alaric getting up at an ungodly hour in order for him to teach her how to fight vampires. I don't know who she expects to be defending herself against exactly since all the vampires she knows are either her friends, in love with her, compelled to protect her, or too strong even for other vampires to fight. But best to be safe I guess. The fact that she's too weak to trigger the staking device strapped to her hand isn't exactly a promising start, though.

Damon, meanwhile, wakes up to a house of dead and/or bleeding girls and his Ripper brother thinks it's all a big joke (or at least nothing to get riled up about). Damon's annoyance only increases when Rebecca shows up on their doorstep and invites herself in (literally--isn't the house still in Elena's name? How did Rebecca just walk right in?) It seems Klaus was in such a hurry to leave town that he left her behind (or he left her to keep an eye on Ty; both explanations are given). So she's decided to crash with the Salvatores even though neither of them wants her there. And she calls them rude.

But Rebecca isn't the only one making herself at home where she doesn't belong. It's the first day of school and while all the girls are preoccupied with their boyfriend troubles (Bonnie's upset that Jeremy sees his ghost exes; Caroline is worried about Klaus-sired hybrid Ty; and Elena...well, you know...) Stefan decides to show up and play student again. After all, he does have to keep an eye on Elena. And woe to anyone who gets in his way (Alaric, various random students).

While Elena is dealing with Stefan Caroline is having the worst first day of school ever *pout*. First Ty is somewhat out of control. He comes to school with blood on his shirt--from a blood bag that Rebecca hooked him up with. He's also super stoked that he's Klaus's first successful hybrid, not to mention one of Klaus's assets (along with Elena). He's not too careful about compelling teachers in front of other students, either. Even worse Rebecca has decided to become a student as well--and she makes it clear she wants Caroline's life, including her boyfriend. But before she steals Ty she takes over Caroline's beloved Spirit Squad. Oh noes--now it'll never be the bestest year ever!!

Elena's already figured out that this isn't going to be a great year so she starts working out as a way of getting strong enough to fight the bad guys. You can see why Damon would be amused when he walks in and finds her lifting a barbell. With barely any effort he pushes down on it so Elena can't lift it. Yeah, she'll be ready to fight vampires any minute now. Giving up on the weights she tells Damon that she wants to lock Stefan up until Michael kills Klaus and the compulsion is broken. Damon does what Elena hates and points out reality: in this case that even without the compulsion Stefan is hooked on human blood. So Elena breaks out her default response: do it for me, Damon. Ugh. Anyone else sick of the way she uses and manipulates him? Yeah, taking advantage of someone who loves you is definitely the right way to go. But, of course, he gives in and even shows her (all sexy like) how to properly stake a vamp.

Damon, Elena, Alaric, and Caroline get together to work out a plan for capturing and containing Stefan. They want to ask Ty to raid his mom's vervain supply for enough to keep Stefan down for awhile but it turns out Ty's not on board. Why? Because putting Stefan out of commission isn't in Klaus's best interests. Rather than attributing Ty's weird behaviour to compulsion (the reasonable conclusion), Damon figures out he's been "sired." Siring is apparently really rare and involves excessive loyalty to a vampire's maker. Ty is putting Klaus's good ahead of his own and there's no cure.

Once they get Ty out of the way our heroes put their cunning plan into action. At the bonfire party while Damon distracts Rebecca (with somewhat over-the-top marshmallow flirtation), Elena gets drunk and makes sure Stefan knows it. He then spends the night following her around to make sure she doesn't get hurt. (He also calls her a lightweight, which is weird because I seem to recall a road trip with Damon where she nearly out-drank him.) There's a vaguely interesting bit when Elena watches Damon flirt with Rebecca and is definitely jealous (although she completely denies it).

As for the rest of the gang, Matt is preoccupied with his ghost sister instead of actually taking part in any school-like activities. He's happy that he gets to talk to her again and she uses that to her advantage, telling him that he can help bring her back. She won't be alive exactly but she'll be able to come and go as she pleases instead of having to rely on Matt to pull her across. All he needs to do is perform a ritual while a witch Vicky is in contact with on the other side works some magic from her end. But oops--Jeremy overhears and hurries to tell Anna all about it. Anna is distressed, insisting there's darkness around Vicky and that if she crosses over it'll upset the balance of nature. Next step: talk to Bonnie.

Bonnie is pissy because Jeremy spoke to Anna before he spoke to her, especially when she realizes that Anna is still there with them. She storms off to find Matt and deal with the Vicky situation. By then it turns out Matt has already successfully performed the ritual. What started out as a happy reunion with his sister goes bad fast when Vicky explains that part of her deal with the witch involves her restoring balance to the world. She informs him that Klaus's hybrids can't be allowed to survive and since they need doppelganger blood she's going to have to kill Elena. When Matt finally confesses everything to Bonnie she decides to try a magic-blocking spell to keep Vicky from crossing over.

Back to Elena's sidekicks, Caroline is busy having a talk with Ty about his obnoxious behaviour. After he swears he doesn't want to be his old jerkoff self again and promises to be good he and Caroline end up getting naked. Damon gets put out of commission with a marshmallow-roasting stick through the gut when Rebecca realizes he's trying to distract her. But even though she's pissed that he's trying to distract her and she leaves--where does she go? She disappears. You'd think she might try to find out why Damon is distracting her--especially since Stefan is nowhere to be found.

Stefan is still following drunk Elena and she's now hanging out by herself at the top of the bleachers. This leads me to an(other) issue I have with this episode. The bonfire everyone is attending is the "Spirit Squad" bonfire. Which makes it a school-related event. The bleachers would indicate it's even on school property. So (a) where are the teacher chaperones and (b) how are all these students drunk? I love how everyone on the show is negative about drug use and looks down on the school stoners but binge drinking among underage kids is just fine. I guess drinking is just cool. And Elena shows how cool it is when she climbs over the railing on the bleachers. Even Stefan asks if she's 5. Of course she falls like an idiot (what's worse is she does it on purpose) and Stefan bolts to catch her. When he does they have a moment ("I knew you'd catch me"--well, yeah, because he's compelled to!) A second later Alaric shoots Stefan full of vervain.

As they load Stefan into Alaric's car and Elena gets in after him we see Vicky standing nearby. We also see a gas can and the cigarette in her hand. Sure, she has to kill Elena--why not kill her in the most horrible way possible? Vicky throws the cigarette and the car is quickly engulfed. The doors and windows are also stuck shut. As Alaric fails to break the window Vicky materializes inside the car. At least she has the decency to apologize to Elena, even if she can't hear it. Meanwhile Bonnie is trying to work the spell to stop Vicky. Elena manages to rouse Stefan long enough for him to kick out the back panel of the SUV. Just as Vicky is about to prevent Elena from escaping she disappears and reappears in the room with Matt and Bonnie. Matt finally says goodbye to his sister and Vicky disappears for good. Wow, anticlimactic. Once Elena gets out of the car she and Alaric drag Stefan away as well. Then the car blows up. Just another day in Mystic Falls.

Back at Damon's he insists on putting burn lotion on Elena. I think it's silly but whatever--it gives them an excuse to continue their ongoing romantic tension. Elena comments on his flirting with Rebecca and he responds that he thought she was too drunk to notice. She says she was faking most of it and he responds with "So was I." Yes, very sweet. And yet she's still obsessed with Stefan. There's really no accounting for taste.

As Elena and Alaric are leaving, Stefan is up and recovered. He points out to them that they need him and are better off with him around. Sure--it's not like Elena is friends with any other vampires. He asks Elena why she saved him from the fire and she responds with a speech about hope and not giving up. He calls her pathetic and she finally manages to trigger those hand stakes right into his stomach (seems to be the favourite non-lethal area for staking). Apparently she's all strong now. After a whole day of working out. Maybe I should run around the track and lift weights for 10 minutes.

Caroline and Ty have missed all the action that didn't directly include them but Caroline refuses to stay the night. The second she's out of there Rebecca shows up with a compelled girl as a present for Ty. He tells Rebecca to leave but when she bites the girl on the wrist, he's there a second later helping himself to neck. So much for his promise to Caroline.

I should also take a minute to mention vampire vampire-hunter Michael. Katherine has been trying to revive him with the blood of various humans and animals with no success. It seems he's not interested in eating anything. Katherine's about ready to give up but after an "encouraging" phone call from Damon she agrees to give it another shot. She grabs the nearest person and force feeds Michael, partially reviving him. He then becomes rather insistent that Katherine take the blood away, which she reluctantly does. Later Michael apologizes and tells her he's denied himself human blood since he was turned. He also tells her he can and will kill Klaus. Katherine removes his chains as he claims he doesn't feed on living things. So guess what he eats. Apparently Katherine is dumb as dirt because she has to ask and, surprise, he grabs her and bites. A few moments later she goes limp.

As the episode winds down Bonnie is still avoiding Jeremy. But then he admits to Anna that he can't stop thinking about her (Anna, not Bonnie). Anna says she feels the same. As they reach over to hold hands they're shocked to find out they can actually feel each other. They have no idea what it means. Meanwhile as Damon is cleaning up at home a vase falls over and breaks while someone/something streaks by. Of course Damon assumes it's Stefan but a second later he's thrown across the room and knocked out and it turns out ghost Mason is in the house. Okay so bring on the angry ghosts.

You can probably already tell how I feel about this episode. Not loving the ghosts, the plot holes, the overwhelming lameness of it all. It's extra disappointing because we know how great this show can be. Maybe it'll pick up. I hope so because I have better things to do than watch shows that bore and annoy me. Even if they do star Ian Somerhalder.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and prominent fangs.

Strengths: Ability to compel humans (Originals can also compel other vampires). Super strength, speed and gymnastics abilities. Unsurpassed skill at taking liberties.

Weaknesses: Stakes, vervain, blood lust, fire. Siring (excessive loyalty by a vampire to their maker).

Mythology: Vampires can turn off their emotions and humanity at will. Originals can only be temporarily "killed" by a certain type of dagger plunged into their hearts; when the dagger is removed the Original returns to life (only now it turns out there is some way to kill them permanently).

Sound Bites

Damon: [to Elena] Yeah, so you might not want to come around here for awhile. We have a new housemate: Barbie Klaus.

Elena: Who are you?
Stefan: I'm the guy who's been assigned to protect the human blood bag. I mean, no offence or anything.

Elena: Which is why it's your job to keep her [Rebecca] away.
Damon: How? She's an Original. Last time I checked we're out of daggers.
Elena: So then preoccupy her with your charm.
Alaric: You might have better luck finding the dagger.
Damon: You ever not going to be mad at me, Ric?
Alaric: Doubtful.

Elena: [As Damon presses down on the barbell she's trying to lift] What are you doing?
Damon: Helping you out.
Elena: Damon!
Damon: Come on, Buffy.

Ty: [to Caroline] Everything I like about me is you.

Ty: You should go.
Rebecca: You sure? I think my brother would want his hybrid to indulge in everything life has to offer.

The Vampire Diaries, Season 3 Episode 6 "Smells Like Teen Spirit." Written by Julie Plec and Caroline Dries. Directed by Rob Hardy. From The CW.

19 October 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E5 "The Reckoning"

Spoilers Ahead

Before I get to the episode I have to ask: these people are 18--why are they still in high school? High school is still only four years long, right? Did they all get held back? And their idea of wacky fun times is setting up pranks throughout the school? Sadly, that's only a taste of this season's lameness. I think TVD has lost the plot. I'm officially depressed.

Anyway, "The Reckoning" starts off with Matt (who looks about as much a teenager as Damon does, which is to say not at all) is working out in the school gym late at night. Sure, why not? Hearing a noise he goes to investigate and discovers his classmates embroiled in setting up pranks (mousetraps all over the floor! Honey on the doorknobs!) for Senior Prank Night. Um, yeah. Well, they have been looking forward to this since they were freshmen. Besides, Caroline insisted they need to get involved and create memories that they'll remember for the rest of their lives. Sure, when Caroline is 200 she'll be looking back fondly on gluing down toilet seats when she was 18. Do any of the writers actually remember that she's a vampire? Hopefully they will soon because she's gotten to be as useless and annoying as she was back in the first season. Hint: it's called character development--look into it.

When Elena takes off on her own to glue Alaric's desk shut she runs into Klaus. He's not too happy to see she's still alive and he takes it out on two random students, compelling one to hold up her leg and the other to beat her to death if she lets it drop.

Elsewhere Stefan wakes up and finds Rebecca guarding him. It turns out Klaus has been breaking his neck all afternoon, which is strange since Klaus claimed he wasn't angry at Stefan. Maybe he changed his mind. Or maybe it's one of those (many) things the writers let slide. Rebecca has also changed, from an apparently sensible woman in the 1920s to a bitchy, jealous brat in 2011. Her jealousy, of course, is aimed at Elena and Stefan's feelings for the doppelganger, which Rebecca expresses by staking Stefan in the gut with a crowbar and repeatedly voicing her desire for Elena's death.

Once Stefan is immobilized Rebecca goes and finds Caroline and Ty. She knocks Caroline out without any problem and drags Ty to Klaus. When Matt and Bonnie arrive ready to TP the place Klaus is elated to see Bonnie. He explains his hybrid problem (they die when he tries to turn them) and orders Bonnie to find a solution. And just to add a little more pressure he feeds Ty his blood before breaking his neck, forcing Bonnie to find a solution before Ty wakes up and dies. By this time Stefan has regained consciousness and makes his way to the gym to join the party. After a scuffle in which Stefan badly tries to pretend he doesn't care about Elena (did he really think telling Klaus he would do whatever he wanted would actually work?) Klaus ends up compelling Stefan to do whatever he says without question, starting with killing the previously mentioned random teenagers. Then, because there wasn't already enough pressure on Bonnie, Klaus decides to start a 20-minute countdown at the end of which--if Bonnie hasn't come up with the solution--Stefan is to kill Elena. Of course the fact that he doesn't bother telling Bonnie this makes it that much more fun or something.

Bonnie and Matt, meanwhile, have taken off to figure out what to do. Bonnie is stressed because the curse is ancient and none of her grimoires go back that far. But then in a flash of inspiration she realizes she can get formerly dead Jeremy to talk to her dead witch contacts (who won't talk to her anymore because she repeatedly used them) and find out from them what to do. The only problem is she can't find Jeremy. Rather than worrying about what might have happened to Jeremy (it's not like no one's seen or heard from him for at least a day or anything) Matt gets the brilliant idea to kill himself by drowning in the pool and have Bonnie bring him back with CPR. That way he can see Vicky again too. Of course it all works out perfectly and Vicky has a message for Bonnie from the Original Witch: Klaus's hybrids are failing because...wait for it...the doppelganger is still alive! Gasp, shock. Pretty sure we already knew that.

Klaus overhears this, however, and seems to think it's valuable information. While this is going on Elena is back in the gym reminding Stefan of their love and urging him to fight the compulsion. Stefan spends the time trying to convince her he's now a psycho killer, telling her that even though she's the only thing that's kept him from shutting off his emotions, if he gets near her blood she's dead. Just what you want to hear from the person you love! By this time Ty has also woken up and is not looking so good.

As the timer runs out Stefan tells Elena to run. He holds himself back as much as he can but he can't entirely stop himself from chasing her, although skewering himself with a broom handle seems to help a lot. As she's making her escape Elena runs into Klaus. He drags her back to Stefan where he pulls the makeshift stake out of him and then compels him to shut off his emotions/humanity. Then he offers Stefan a drink from Elena's neck.

Of course he doesn't let Stefan kill Elena. No, in a fantastic leap of logic that Fox Mulder would be proud of Klaus has decided that the Original Witch hated him so much that he should do the opposite of whatever she says. So if she claims the doppelganger needs to be dead he thinks what he really needs to do is feed Elena's blood to Ty. And success! Ty makes the transition to hybrid. See, Klaus figured out that the witch's failsafe was to require the doppelganger to be killed for the curse to be broken, but that hybrids couldn't be made without the doppelganger's blood. That way she would ensure that even if Klaus ever did break the curse he would always be alone. It turns out that so many people have had to die because all Klaus wants is some company and the Original Witch just wanted him to suffer. Yup. So Klaus takes Elena to the hospital, where he compels a nurse to keep Elena sedated as she takes (and bags) even more blood. His plan is then to take his doppelganger and his hybrid and get the hell out of Mystic Falls.

Side Note: Is it just me or is this the worst curse/failsafe ever? First of all, why keep making doppelgangers if the Original Witch really wanted to curse Klaus? Why keep giving him chances to break it? As for making sure Klaus is alone forever, wouldn't he just have to wait until the next doppelganger comes along? Sure he'll be alone for awhile but what's that to an immortal being? Looks like someone didn't think this one through too well. Back to our regularly scheduled review...

Meanwhile Damon and Katherine's big road trip involves driving aimlessly. According to Katherine it's so they can get far enough away that Damon won't go running back. Even though he insists that won't happen he still pulls over and throws away the keys, refusing to go any farther until Katherine tells him what's going on. The one thing that redeems this scene is the kiss between Damon and Katherine (he just thought he'd give it a try). Very hot although too brief. It would be totally worth risking a car wreck to get to lock lips with Damon (or Ian) for a moment. Hey, I never said I didn't have issues. It's probably good that they didn't wreck the car, though, as it turns out Jeremy is unconscious in the trunk.

It seems Pearl and Anna knew how to kill Klaus but since they were both dead Katherine never mentioned it before (it was Pearl's leverage, yet Katherine still let her get entombed so she could continue running from Klaus. Maybe saving Pearl instead would have been the smart plan...) Now that it turns out Jeremy is a ghost whisperer Katherine wants to use him to talk to Anna to find out what will get rid of Klaus permanently. At first Anna refuses but after Damon smashes Jeremy's head against a rock (really?) she tells them they're looking for Michael, a vampire who hunts vampires (is she sure she didn't mean Angel?) She also lets them know they'd be stupid to wake Michael because he'll kill them all.

After finding the car keys Damon discovers that Bonnie's been texting him about Klaus. He leaves Jeremy with Katherine (really??) to find Michael while he returns to Mystic Falls--despite insisting he wouldn't go back--to help Elena et al. This is where we get the only other decent moment in the episode. Katherine can't believe Damon is going to risk his life for Elena and she shouts after him that the Damon she knew would never be so stupid. Damon pauses and replies that he wouldn't have done this for her. The line and the delivery are pretty devastating and it's a rather satisfying moment (although he did do it for her when he tried to free her from the tomb and ended up getting shot and killed, but we'll overlook that oversight this time).

When Damon gets back to Mystic Falls he finds Klaus just in time. As Klaus is about to kill him Damon mentions Michael, telling Klaus that he and Katherine found him and that Michael knows where Klaus is. That shuts Klaus up. He ends up taking off without Elena or Ty. That leaves Damon free to rescue Elena from the hospital, carrying her out all heroic-like.

As for the rest of the gang, Matt is happy to finally get a chance to talk to Vicky and (theoretically) say goodbye. Ty insists he feels phenomenal, although Caroline looks worried. And no one seems to remember that Jeremy is missing.

Back at his place Damon gives Elena bourbon (although I really think she could use some plasma after all that blood loss) to help her forget. He also offers to compel her but she refuses, claiming she needs to remember everything. He then tries to give her back her necklace, which he re-stole from Katherine, only Elena doesn't take it. Instead she laments that Stefan is really gone this time and then whines that Damon wasn't there (sure, complain when he acts like a vampire but when she needs his help suddenly he's obligated to be her vampire saviour). Still he's her bitch so he promises that he'll never leave her again (it's actually a rather romantic moment but I'm too irritated with Elena to care). Just then Stefan saunters in and gets himself a drink. Apparently Klaus has compelled him to watch over and protect Elena until he comes back for her. So basically this is season 1 all over again with Salvatore role reversal. This should be dull.

The episode ends with Jeremy and Katherine finding the crypt in which Michael has been entombed (a witch did it in the 90s). He's chained and looks dead but as soon as Katherine pushes the cover aside he opens his eyes.

After all the drama of Klaus finding Elena and taking over the school the whole thing ended with a whimper. The episode felt anticlimactic and uninspired. Events were resolved way too easily, there was no sense of tension, and definitely no real surprises. The writers almost seem to have given up (or maybe they're just really lazy). All I know is we're five episodes in and I've been consistently bored and annoyed. Come on Vampire Diaries--it's not too late to turn it around (you've done it before).

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and sharp fangs.

Strengths: Ability to compel humans (Originals can also compel other vampires). Super strength (the older the vampire the stronger they are) and speed. Fast healing.

Weaknesses: Stakes. Compulsion by Originals. Vampire hunters.

Mythology: Vampires can turn off their emotions if they choose to. In order to turn into a vampire a person must first die with vampire blood in their system; to complete the transition they need to feed on human blood (in the case of Klaus's hybrids they need to feed on the doppelganger's blood). Originals can only be temporarily "killed" by a certain type of dagger plunged into their hearts; when the dagger is removed the Original returns to life (only now it turns out there is some way to kill them permanently).

Sound Bites

Klaus: [to Elena] You are supposed to be dead. What are we going to do about that?

Elena: Don't, Klaus--you don't have to hurt anybody.
Klaus: Come on, love, of course I do.

Rebecca: So this is the latest doppelganger? The original one was much prettier.

Katherine: What if I told you there was a way to kill Klaus? And not dagger dead. Dead dead.
Damon: I'd say you were desperate and lying. Or drunk. Or desperate lying drunk.

Elena: [after Klaus compels Stefan to shut off his emotions] What did you do?
Klaus: I fixed him.

The Vampire Diaries
, Season 3 Episode 5 "The Reckoning." Written by Michael Narducci. Directed by John Behring. From The CW.

12 October 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E4 "Disturbing Behavior"

Spoilers Ahead

I don't know if it's me or what but I'm less than impressed with this season of TVD. It just seems so...predictable. And dull. Where's the tension? Where are the twists? Where's the Damon that was a force to be reckoned with? Maybe he's too busy helping Elena get her boyfriend back and getting his ass kicked. Please tell me this season is building up to something good. Eye candy alone does not a watchable show make.

Anyway, "Disturbing Behavior" starts off in Chicago with the newly awakened Rebecca trying on clothes and getting up to speed on modern-day fashion. Stefan decides he needs some fresh air and while outside sees Katherine. They have a quick chat in which we find out that Katherine knows about Elena/Rebecca's necklace, that Stefan thinks he has it all under control, and that Klaus is smarter than everyone (according to Katherine, at least). Informative.

Meanwhile Damon is helping Elena get ready for the Founders' party at the Lockwoods'. Well, mostly he's giving her a hard time about making chili ("everyone brings chili") and for still wearing the necklace Stefan gave her. (Side note: isn't that necklace full of vervain, which is why Stefan gave it to her in the first place? And wouldn't it be a good idea to keep wearing it for that reason?)

Once Damon's had enough of Elena he meets up with Liz. It turns out she's been keeping Bill detained while the vervain leaves his system and now she wants Damon to compel him. Oh sure--now she appreciates his vampirism. Anyway before Damon can re-write his memories, Bill gives what I hope was meant to be an ironic speech about how the mind is so strong it can be trained to overcome the basic nature of a vampire. I kept waiting for Damon to ask him if he thinks he can train his mind to be straight instead of gay but he never did. No one did, which I thought was kind of ridiculous given the circumstances (come on, doesn't Bill sound exactly like those extremists who send their gay kids to be retrained to be straight?) Damon does at least compel Bill to leave town immediately, remembering only that he went shopping with Caroline.

While Damon's away Elena hangs out with Bonnie and Caroline. They (well, mostly Caroline) also give her a hard time about the necklace, as well as about all the time she's spending with Damon. Elena can't win. And as if to drive that point home her necklace suddenly burns her. When Bonnie takes a look at it it's clear the thing is rife with magic.

It turns out the magic is coming from Gloria, who is trying to locate the necklace through Rebecca. After performing her spell Gloria claims she knows where the necklace is! Oh, but not really (I hate it when writers use a line for dramatic effect even when it doesn't make sense). She then tells Stefan, Klaus and Rebecca that she needs some alone time to keep working on it. Stefan leaves with the other two but returns to find out exactly what Gloria knows. She admits she heard Elena and the others talking about Stefan but she has no interest in helping Klaus. Before Stefan can breathe a sigh of relief she informs him that the necklace is a talisman of the original witch and that she wants it for herself. Then she threatens Stefan before immobilizing him with her magic. Looks like it's torture time for Stefan as Gloria looks to find out what he knows the old-school voodoo way. Strange, though, that she's not worried about Klaus walking in on them. Then again it turns out Klaus isn't the issue. Just as Gloria finds out all about Elena, Katherine shows up and kills her. Guess she's not all bad.

After Stefan thanks Katherine and tells her to get lost (come on, dude--maybe you should get over it) he meets up with Rebecca at the warehouse. He asks her why she doesn't un-dagger the rest of her family and she claims that if she did Klaus would hunt her down and kill her. Which tells us that Klaus's family is a bunch of cowards. As if they couldn't have put him in his place if they'd all worked together. Anyway, Stefan then asks a bunch of clumsy questions about who Rebecca and Klaus are running from (she can't tell him because Klaus would be furious). Then she kisses him and realizes he's been lying (she has extra special powers of vampire-woman's intuition). When Klaus returns, Rebecca immediately tattles on Stefan, claiming she doesn't think he's with them. Stefan tries to protest but a second later everything goes black as Klaus attacks. So much for Rebecca and Stefan's great love.

It turns out the Founders' party is the main event this episode. While at it Alaric decides it's a good time to tell Damon to back off from Elena. Before Damon can properly respond he's called in to the Council meeting. He, Liz, and Carol Lockwood all claim the town is vampire free and the rest of the Council buys it. And then Bill shows up. It turns out that Damon's compulsion didn't take (he's got quite the trained mind, after all). Bill demands to be head of the Council and also wants vervain put into the town's water supply (woe to any humans with an allergy). Damon is furious about it but when he tells Alaric and Elena he doesn't exactly have their support. Elena is even stupid enough to suggest the vervain will help keep him in check. Rightly pissed off he makes sure Alaric is wearing his immortality ring before snapping his neck. Then he takes off to kill Bill.

Damon finds Bill where he left him and stops to have a quick chat with him. Then Damon bites him. I do have to say it's nice to see a vampire acting like a vampire on this show. The problem with having vampires as the good guys is that they act like good guys. Call me crazy but I want to see fangs and blood. Unfortunately it's over too quickly as Caroline, warned by Elena, shows up and puts an end to Damon's (and my) fun. For whatever reason she still loves her dad (you'd think the torture would have put a major damper on that) and her anger makes her stronger than Damon. See what I mean about him not being himself? Even Caroline gets the better of him. She does quit while she's ahead, though, and takes off with her dad while she still can.

Damon then has a confrontation with Elena in which she whines at him that he *gasp* acts like a vampire! He finally comes to his senses long enough to snap at her that he is a vampire and he's not Stefan, a concept she doesn't quite seem to grasp. At least she finally kinda-sorta admits to Caroline that she maybe could be attracted to Damon. We'll see if this actually ends up going anywhere.

When Alaric finally revives he's also pissed off at Damon. It's like everyone just noticed that Damon isn't a choir boy. Alaric's response to his newfound knowledge is to go to the Council and insist he gets a spot on it as the Gilbert family rep. He does have a point that Carol, Liz and Damon aren't entirely unbiased. And that supernaturals look out for themselves so the humans should do the same. But I'm getting the icky feeling that Alaric is on the road to anti-vampire fanaticism. Damn. Damon has his own--not quite sensible--reaction to all the flak he's been getting. When Katherine shows up at his door (with Elena's necklace, which she scammed off Bonnie) he agrees to go on a road trip with her. Yeah, okay, he could use a break but Katherine? Really? Sigh.

While all this is going on Jeremy is having some awkward time with his girlfriend (back in town at last) and his ghost ex. It seems Anna has been trying to get his attention for days but he's only just suddenly been able to hear her. From what Anna can determine, for Jeremy to actually see and hear her she needs to be pushing (from her side of reality) to be noticed at the same time as he's pulling--in other words he has to want to see her. Interesting that he keeps wanting to see her while he's with Bonnie. Anna tells him that she's alone and lonely where she is. She also mentions that she feels a darkness whenever Vicky is involved and that Jeremy has to be careful not to let her in. Sure if you can trust one ex's word against another's. It doesn't matter too much in any case. After Anna shows up at a rather inopportune moment Jeremy decides he's better off without her in his life. Even as she's begging him not to do it he shuts Anna out. Then he goes and finally tells Bonnie what's been happening since she brought him back from the dead while Anna cries and tries to get his attention to no avail. Sucks to be a ghost.

The episode ends with Stefan waking up in what turns out to be the back of a truck. Klaus is there too and surprisingly isn't mad at him. But he is wondering what Stefan's been hiding. So he figured it made sense to go back to the source. Welcome back to Mystic Falls, Stefan!

Maybe I'm still the only one not loving this season but you've got to admit that when the most interesting plot development is a road trip with Katherine the show's low on ideas. Maybe things will pick up in the next episode. If not it's a long time to wait for True Blood to start up again.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and sharp fangs.

Strengths: Ability to compel humans, except for Caroline's dad. Ability to heal human wounds with their blood. Super strength and speed (the older the vampire the stronger they are--unless the younger one is really, really pissed off, apparently). Witty repartee, mad chili-making skillz.

Weaknesses: Vervain, magic.

Mythology: Original vampires can't be permanently killed, although they can be put into a death-like state with the use of a particular dagger. They return to life as soon as the dagger is removed.

Sound Bites

Rebecca: So women in the 21st century dress like prostitutes, then? You know, I got dirty looks for wearing trousers.
Klaus: You wore trousers so they could wear nothing.

Caroline: [to Elena] If my own father, who I love dearly, can't change me no one's changing Damon. Not even you.

Elena: Where have you been?
Damon: Managing Bill Forbes. Apparently he's impervious to compulsion.
Alaric: How?
Damon: I have no idea. But he threatened to out me! Don't get me started on the irony of that.

Bill: I knew what I was risking when I didn't leave town but I figured you're not self-destructive enough to kill the Sheriff's ex-husband.
Damon: Makes you the third person to underestimate me today.

Damon: [to Elena] I am not Stefan--how about you stop trying to turn me into him?

Caroline: Daddy, I'm gonna be okay.
Bill: You're a vampire, sweetheart. I don't think you'll ever be okay again.

The Vampire Diaries, Season 2 Episode 4 "Disturbing Behavior." Written by Brian Young. Directed by Wendey Stanzler. From The CW.