The Moth Chase

Elevating the Art of Procrastanalysis – Academics wasting time on pop culture

You’ve Been Marked

with 3 comments

Dear Kathryn,

Man oh man, I guess it was too much to hope ol’ Rose was going to be fine…the possibility not only of a sexy “friends with benefits” storyline, but also for Damon to find a genuine friend and a more grown up form of lover – I guess we had to know it was too good to be true.  I, however, am holding out hope (especially based on the previews for the next episode – January 27th! wtf!) that we’ll find some magic healing for what ails her (I’m tempted to cue the Marvin Gaye, but am thinking this might be more Bonnie’s forte).  I guess I’m not entirely convinced that the biter was Jules, though. I realize that’s the more obvious option – especially seeing as it seems almost certain not to be Tyler – but I wasn’t completely convinced that Jules even was a werewolf.  Something isn’t adding up – did you catch any clues I missed?  I’m loving the mystery!

And speaking of what I love – On the one hand, I’m all over the more adult version of a love affair between Damon and Rose (what you said the other week is so true – it’s shockingly awesome to see real grown ups going at it on this show.  We certainly don’t get it with Jenna’s childish antics – and while I’m on Jenna, seriously, someone let her in on the loop so she can stop letting crazy vampires into the house!  And while they’re at it – please tell her barrettes in the bangs like that are not an option after 30! Ok, oof – I digress).  So, on the other hand, I continue to love what is developing between Caroline and Tyler.  The scenes between them in this episode evoked the most genuine pathos we’ve experienced with this show to date, in my humble opinion.  Watching T’s bones break while he whimpered, “It hurts,” and the concurrent pain of Caroline’s yelps was excruciating.  The two managed to communicate a genuine type of love for each other in those moments – something so powerful that it throbbed at the edges with the potential for romance, but didn’t necessitate it.  Between Damon and Rose and Caroline and Tyler last night, we were reminded of the myriad, lovely ways we can slip into being with a lover.  These vampire narratives tend to emphasize one way – initial, can’t-control-yourself, exciting love at first sight.  I was pleased to see a venturing out into a number of other ways to explore love.

And while I’m often frustrated by the ways in which girls in these supernatural narratives (Elena, Bella, Sookie…) take on ridiculous amounts of personal, potential danger because of their dedication to their men, something feels different about Caro.  Here the connection makes sense.  They have, as you said last week, some deep, shared connection.  They’re both supes – it’s not a supernatural guy and his boring, human girl (Sookie is hardly an exception here for me, nor is later novels Bella).  Their transformations mirror the real teenage angsty transformations of changing bodies, unbridled desires, confusing feelings and, let’s face it, odd new forms of emotional pain.  It’s like teenager-ness on crack.  And their desires to care for each other in the midst of that is quite beautiful to watch.  Finally a supernatural, teenage couple I can root for!

Because I’m running hot and cold on Bonnie and Luca.  I’m tired of their shared spells that leave her looking orgasmic and him looking gloaty.  Perhaps their continual betrayal of each other is kind of interesting – but nothing to build a relationship on!  My vote goes to Jer…here’s hoping he mans up before this season is out.

Loose ends – I couldn’t catch what Elijah said when he compelled Katherine at the end.  Did you?  Um, Katherine can give Stefan sex dreams?!  a) why did she wait till now?  And b) that was certainly a let down from last week’s preview – not fair, guys!  Next, I’m pretty excited about the possible return of Isobel.  I’m deadly curious to see how Elijah and Elena’s negotiated plan works out.  Did Mrs. Lockwood say to Jules, “Let’s open the past”?  And if that is what she said, what did she mean by it?  And is there any possibility that Mason is somehow still alive?  Was that him who bit Rose?  And while I’m on it – really, a wolf going for Damon would just miss and take out Rose instead? That doesn’t seem right.  Is it possible that this is a werewolf who actually has marked Rose for something?  And, while we’re on it, is there some special significance to being marked?  Beyond the obvious, that is?

Yeah, lots of questions – and I can’t believe we have to wait till NEXT YEAR to get some answers.  Between that and Dexter finishing up this week, we’re left somewhat adrift dear K.  Readers, any thoughts on how we should fill our time?  We’re thinking of blogging some old Buffy episodes (no spoilers please – we’re both watching for the first time on Netlix streaming) and doing a couple of Christmas movie reviews.  Any requests?

xoxo,
Natalie

—-

Dear Natalie,

January 27 seems far too long to wait, especially after they made us take a two week break two weeks ago. Though I have to admit, leaving us with Rose’s festering wound, Katherine locked in the tomb, and Tyler newly transformed was a pretty great mid-way finale.

As to the mystery of who the werewolf was who bite Rose, I am going to stick with the obvious and say Jules. I definitely think she is a werewolf. She said as much to Damon in the bar and it will just be too oblique to me if her references to not messing with her at “that time of the month” (and, um, that is a pretty awesome update on a very old and lame joke) and the full moon and sniffing out the wolf’s bane from first moment were some sort of indirection. What I want to know is who was she talking to on the phone when she figured out that Tyler is also a werewolf? We already know that werewolves are essential to ritual to break the curse of the sun and the moon. Does Jules work for Claus? Or is there another player we have yet to meet?

As for what Mrs. Lockwood said to Jules, I think it was the very bland “let’s hope for the best” – though your take would be much cooler. I also am going to stick with the obvious and say that Mason is really dead. If he could survive having his heart ripped out and thrown across a living room, I would question whether anything action we’ve ever seen has real consequences. But I do think Jules and/or Tyler might discover his body and that will bring the heat between weres and vamps to a new level. That might be one of the things I’m most excited about for the rest of the season – really exploring the vamp/were relationship/rivalry. With Mason out of the picture and Tyler so in the dark it hasn’t really felt like there was much to explore. But with a new, experienced were (and a woman!) on the scene there is a lot more they can do. Especially if she reveals herself to Tyler and takes him under her wing.

Though I wouldn’t want that to mess up the awesome relationship brewing between Tyler and Caroline. I am right there with you on that! I am sure it is my own projection of life experience into a teenage moment, but did his transformation remind you at all of a gender twist on a birth scene? As he was prepping for the transformation, with the video of Mason’s own experience playing in the background, I tried to think of what it reminded me of. And then when Caro kept urging him to breathe through it, it hit me – it reminded me of labor. You hear so many stories, watch videos (if you are stupid), see movies, etc. and you know this intense, awful pain is coming your way and all you can do is try to brace to endure it, live into it, breathe through it, whatever. I won’t press the analogy too far, or claim that having your bones break spontaneously is more or less painful than 24 hours of hard labor, but watching Caroline play the traditional role of the father, trying to comfort, assure, and coach, even while she was freaking out herself, was super awesome. As was seeing Tyler try to deal with the intensity of what was happening to him. Though I will give Tyler this, knowing you have to go through that experience every month and you don’t get a cuddly baby at the end is way worse, and definitely something to cry over.

I am also right there with you on my boredom with the Bonnie/Luca relationship. I still don’t understand why the witches are working with Elijah or why they would want to keep the moonstone talisman in tact. If they don’t want to break the curse, why not let the moonstone be destroyed? I might get interested again if Luca broke from his dad and went rogue. As it is now, I know not to trust anything he is doing and that only makes it boring.

Elijah is still intriguing to me and I hope we get to learn more about his hatred for Claus and his desire to keep the curse in tact. What does he have to gain? He is just creepy enough to keep me interested. I am not entirely sure what he said to Katherine, but something along the lines of wanting her to stay put so Claus will know exactly where to find her. The way they were focusing on the eyes though made it clear he was compelling her, but I didn’t understand what he was compelling her to do.

It will be a real dearth of things to watch together as we wait for January 27, so I am open to suggestions. We should definitely see and write about Black Swan and True Grit, but I’ll take other ideas from our dear readers!

Kathryn

———————

Hey K,

I know this is a rare thing we do, but I couldn’t resist a follow up.  Here are my thoughts on Jules: ok, yes, her references were definitely intended to convey that she was a werewolf.  And I didn’t get the “time of the month” joke – that’s funny! Thanks!  But what I wonder is if she is pretending to be a were just to throw Damon off.  In the same way we thought Alaric was a vampire or some other type of supe when he arrived on the scene because he knew so much and seemed crazy powerful – but really he was just a badass human (and I have to say, I miss that old badass Alaric!), I wonder if Jules is a human of the same type – one who knows the secrets, maybe even works with the weres (as Alaric does with the Salvatores), and who knows that letting the vamps think she’s more than that is probably a good self-preservation move.  Which leaves me really wondering who it was she called on the phone…and if that person is the real wolf.

Because you’re right – I was tossing the idea that Mason was alive out there…but that would undo so much of the fabric of the way this show works, that it would just be stupid if he was.

And yes, I absolutely thought of birth in Tyler’s transformation scenes. That’s part of what made it so powerful!  His fixation on watching the video again and again – even though it built up his anxious anticipation of the event – searching for clues for his “first time” was, I think, particularly sad and intense for me because it echoed the nervous first-time mother routine so perfectly.  And I, like you, love this gender reversal.  Caroline has grown up so much since she turned, and it is making her character so much more of a pleasure to watch.  As with every other vampire show, it seems, I am infinitely more interested in the side characters than the central duo.

Ok, I’ll leave it at that – must have been a great episode to pull me in for another round!

xoxo,
N

3 Responses

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  1. Love the recap and writing style ! Is it so wrong of me love vampire diaries almost as much as true blood, and still be 30 ? In my defense, I didn’t exactly have the greatest time in high school (but then again, who did !?) – so maybe I’m trying to live vicariously and fictionally through the cast of VD…

    Jona

    December 11, 2010 at 12:16 am

    • No, Jona – it is not wrong! I’m 32, and it’s one of my fave shows…we all need a little trashy tv in our lives! Glad to have you as a reader! (Natalie)

      themothchase

      December 11, 2010 at 5:23 pm

  2. Wow, I have to say, Michael Trevino was amazing in this episode. I’ve watched a lot of shows with werewolves in them, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen such a wrenching portrayal of what it might actually be like to become one. Not only did his anxiety and fear leading up to the change feel incredibly honest, but the actual change itself was almost hard to watch. I think I had my hand crammed against my mouth the entire time. Also, if anyone had told me in season 1 that Caroline would be one of my favorite characters, I would never have believed him, but she’s definitely been one of the things that has made this season for me.

    Kit

    December 13, 2010 at 12:25 am


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