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The Vampire Diaries “Total Eclipse of the Heart” Review (5×13)

7 Feb

Total Eclipse of the HeartAfter two legitimately fantastic episodes, The Vampire Diaries delivers a more by-the-numbers installment this week. It’s extremely entertaining, but there are some questionable character choices that I hope can be resolved after the Olympic break.

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The Vampire Diaries “500 Years of Solitude” Review (5×11)

23 Jan

500 Years of SolitudeHappy 100th, The Vampire Diaries.

I haven’t written about this show since the season 5 premiere, but I thought I’d drop by and see how our lovely Mystic Falls residents are doing tonight. It’s been a fairly disappointing season thus far, but the show’s 100th episode delivers all the goods; it’s mostly fan service, but in a good way.

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Thursday TV Round Up 10/10/13: Parks and Recreation, The Vampire Diaries, Parenthood

11 Oct

Due to my lack of time to write 3 separate reviews, I’ve decided to introduce TV Round-ups to provide abbreviated thoughts on shows I’ve watched.

DATE: October 10, 2013

SHOWS COVERED: Parks and Recreation, The Vampire Diaries, Parenthood

627-4PARKS AND RECREATION, “DOPPELGANGERS” (6×04)

Now here’s a much better way to handle Leslie Knope. Last week, she bordered on insufferable because 1) No one called her out on her actions, and 2) Her relationship with Eagleton isn’t as deeply personal as her relationship with Ann. While at times she may seem childish, her actions here are understandable. She’s acting out because her best friend has told her she’s leaving (the scene where Ann goes to Leslie with waffles and a picture of Joe Biden is sweet and hilarious).

We also have a bunch of Eagleton Doppelgangers joining the proceedings, and it’s absolutely fantastic. I like that all of them aren’t really straight up “rivals”; there’s a spin on each that subverts my expectations of what the show would do with the character. Billy Eichner and Sam Elliott are wonderful here.

GRADE: B+

627THE VAMPIRE DIARIES, “TRUE LIES” (5×02)

This is a slower episode than last week’s, seemingly more of a “move the pieces into place” episode. It’s not bad, but there seems to be a bit of wheel-spinning going on. It’s always entertaining to see Silas-Stefan, especially when he’s battling it out with Jeremy, and I think Bonnie’s storyline is better handled this week. Her scenes with Matt are touching, and she doesn’t feel as superfluous here. In addition, Katherine is becoming increasingly entertaining; I could watch her complain about her sinus infection all day.

However, I’m finding that the Damon-Elena scenes don’t work for me. Elena’s made her choice, and bringing up the Stefan drama again is tiring.

GRADE: B

627-2PARENTHOOD, “Nipple Confusion” (5×03)

The episode has its ups and downs. I love the Crosby storyline; it really details the difficulties of parenthood in a moving, realistic way. In addition, the Zeek and Camille storyline shines; they never get enough to do, and this episode shows exactly why they’re great. It’s a very relatable and realistic conversation to have, and I’m looking forward to where this goes.

As for Sarah, I hope that she can settle down and focus on photography. I love that Hank calls her out on her “flightiness”, and I like that he doesn’t sugarcoat things too much when she visits him later with the photos. She has a need for validation from others, and I like that Hank just compliments her on her photography, not her person.

The Drew college adventures are pretty inconsequential, mainly used as an excuse to have Matt Lauria act all badass. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun to watch. Joel and Julia’s spat seems a little excessive, but it’s still rooted in reality. I hope that Julia’s relationship with Ed doesn’t turn romantic, as I think it’s an extremely interesting premise to explore an emotional connection, not a physical one.

Now, on to Kristina. She acts childish in this episode; I’m having a hard time believing that she wouldn’t worry about their finances. Also, it’s unrealistic that she would get going this quickly. I love Monica Potter, but this storyline’s dragging a bit.

GRADE: B

Credit to NBC, The CW, Parenthood, The Vampire Diaries, and Parks and Recreation for all pictures. I own nothing.

The Vampire Diaries “I Know What You Did Last Summer” Review (5×01)

4 Oct

650x434xready-to-move-in_650x434.jpg.pagespeed.ic.BQxKEga0ey“I just have a feeling that something bad’s about to happen.”

In Mystic Falls, that’s a guarantee. Season 5 of The Vampire Diaries opens several months after the events of the season 4 finale, sending Elena and Caroline on their way to college, Matt off to have some threesomes, and Stefan off to his watery “grave”. All in all, it’s a solid premiere that successfully sets the tone for the rest of the season.

First off, we have Elena, Caroline, and their new roommate Megan. As per “new character” rules, Megan has connections to our main characters; this is not what’s surprising. What’s surprising is that she’s killed off this early, a move that paves the way for some potentially intriguing storylines. Yet, this college setting can go either way; I’m not entirely sure how to feel about it yet.

The other main storyline of the episode involves Silas-as-Stephen single-handedly taking control of Mystic Falls. I’m grateful that we don’t have to endure half a season of wheel-spinning, as the character just comes right out and tells everyone else who he is. Paul Wesley is always much more interesting as a villain than as a protagonist, and it’s extremely entertaining to watch him ham it up in his interactions with the rest of the cast.

Speaking of the rest of the cast, Katherine, Jeremy, and Bonnie round out the rest of the proceedings here. I’ve always loved Katherine and continue to do so, and watching Evil Dobrev and Evil Wesley on screen is certainly a treat. I hope the show digs deeper into Katherine’s psyche as a human, as we’ve never really had the pleasure of exploring a character who has transformed from a vampire to a human. This is already an interesting arc that has been set into motion.

As for Bonnie and Jeremy, though, I’m finding myself detached from the show when they are on screen. I don’t hate their characters, but their storylines seem superfluous. First of all, since the show decides to just keep Bonnie around, it underscores the emotional impact of last year’s “body switch”. I suppose it can improve, but as of right now, I’m not all that invested.

Still, it’s a very enjoyable opening hour that has me excited for the rest of the season.

GRADE: B

Other thoughts:

-I haven’t watched “The Originals” yet. I’m not sure if I want to.

-Somerhalder is, as always, excellent.

-“How many people can die and still talk to their best friends?” Yes, Bonnie, exactly.

-As I’m not a big fan of Bonnie, her dad’s death doesn’t have much of an impact. In addition, her dad hasn’t been fleshed out enough at this point, and anyway, parents seem to be doomed in Mystic Falls.

-Alaric should return.

-“If I have to hear the word ‘doppelganger’ one more time, I might have to look up how to spell it.”

Credit to The CW and The Vampire Diaries for all pictures. I own nothing.

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