Television
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New Fall Television: The Vampire Diaries

Being the one and only writer on staff who likes some CW shows, or at least the only one who will admit it, I drew the short straw and threw myself on the grenade that was the new slate of shows from the beleaguered  network. So now it’s time to find out if they were as bad as you thought they’d be, or if, by some act of God one of them ended up being watchable.

First we get The Vampires Diaries, which in my Fall Preview I posed as a question mark. Would this be good like True Blood or Buffy The Vampire Slayer? Would it suck beyond belief like Twilight? Or would it land somewhere in between? Well that question has been answered loudly and definitively, but before I get ahead of myself, lets first lay the groundwork.

"Sookeh! Oh. Who you be?"

The story revolves around Elena, whose parents have recently died in a car accident which prompts her to turn to her diary as a way to cope with the loss. Herein lies the high point of the show, Nina Dobrev, who may be one of the hottest girls currently on television. Is her character compelling? Not really. If anything she is the least developed of all the characters on the show, which you might find odd seeing as she is the main character. She is pretty much just hot. The writers may be trying to build her slowly or add a layer of mysteriousness to her character, though, honestly I’d wager they have no idea where they are taking anything.

Secondly we get the vampires. Paul Wesley, who looks like a vampire version of Zach Morris and Ian Summerhalder who we shall discuss in length very soon. Wesley plays Stefan Salvatore, yeah, for real, that’s his f’n name, is a vampire who can go out in the sun because he wears a ring, hmm I guess someone saw that episode of Angel. Being a few hundred year old vampire, of course the one thing he wants to do more than anything in life is Geometry homework as he quickly appears as the mysterious new guy at high school, who, of course every girl in school wants to mount and screw in every scene. This is quickly where the show falls to shambles. Its absolutely ridiculous plot. I can suspend belief but you have to make an effort. I mean really, why would anyone on earth who had the powers a vampire has choose to go back to high school? If he wanted Elena the characters go to parties and out every night, couldn’t he just meet up with her there? Or wait for her outside the school like the decades old pervert he is? But we’ll put that aside because there is plenty more wrong with this show.

He will be a sacrficie that The Island demands.

The token black friend seems to be a haphazardly written rip off / mash up of true bloods Sookie and Tara, by haphazard I mean BLATANT. Which is another problem. This show steals from everything that preceded it. Nothing is fresh or original. Everything seems like a retread or a poorly done rendition of far superior material. The frights are cliche to say the least and the plot seems to be taken right from the Buffy/Angel playbook, well, a really, really, really, really crappy fan fiction version of Buffy.

The worst however is the acting of Ian Summerhalder who redefines the meaning of trash. Moments when his character is supposed to be menacing and the most bad ass dude in town he instead chooses to act like a flaming homosexual. That’s not a slur, I mean he really acts as if he is playing Bruno. The more serious the moment the more he acts like a vampire Clay Akin. Kerr Smith’s gay character on Dawson’s Creek acted more manly. Hell Michelle Williams character on Dawson’s Creek acted more manly. I’m not going to say Ian may be hiding something but his character is surely ready to come out of the closet.

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Actually I lied, that isn’t the worst part of the show, that would be the pacing. To say this show moves at a snail’s pace would be an insult to snails. I have seen paint dry faster then things develop on this show. Imagine the pilot of Flashfoward in reverse, instead of cramming too much into episodes this show crams little to nothing. So skip it, unless you really need to see a hot girl write in a diary and look sad, your time would be better spent doing, well pretty much anything else. Fail.

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