Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday – The Originals

Welcome back to Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday!

Today I’m jumping in with one of my most anticipated shows of the season—The Originals.

For as long as I can remember, I have been a fan of the supernatural on TV.  Since the conclusion of Charmed and Buffy, I found a small void in my television viewing that needed to be filled.  Luckily for me, and the rest of the female population, we did have one program to keep us entertained in the meantime—Supernatural—but I’m greedy and wanted more.  Which is why when the CW launched The Vampire Diaries, I immediately set my DVR.

To me, there are three main characters of The Vampire Diaries: Elena Gilbert, Stefan Salvatore, and Damon Salvatore.  Now for whatever reason, I’ve never been an Elena or a Stefan fan.  However, Damon caught my eye and captured my heart from the get go.

Then there’s also the supporting cast—Matt, Jeremy, Tyler, Bonnie, and Caroline—all of whom I find more enjoyable than Stefan and Elena.  Heck, even a few of the late-comers won me over more than the two “stars” ever have.  But before I go any further, let me add that just because I don’t like the Stefan and Elena characters, doesn’t mean I haven’t appreciated their performances, especially Nina Dobrev’s.  She’s brought tears to my eyes more times than I can count.

But as the seasons roll by, the same remains true: I find myself still preferring everyone BUT Elena and Stefan—even the “bad” vamps (Katherine, Rebekah, and the super-sexy Klaus).

King Klaus!

Klaus…

We first met Klaus (played by Joseph Morgan) during season two of TVD and watched the bad-boy vamp as he killed Elena’s and Jeremy’s Aunt Jenna right in front of us.  Bad, right?  Just flat out mean!  So why do I love the character so much?

Because over the seasons, like many of the other characters on TVD, Klaus has evolved, building a stronger individual arc and making viewers, like me, appreciate him more than I already did.

Klaus—the evil Original with the sexy accent… born a werewolf but cursed by magic to the immortal life (vampirism).  I’ve actually wanted to hug Klaus multiple times over the years (and he was supposed to be the BIG EVIL of the show).  Poor Klaus is so misunderstood and he really does let his feelings get the best of him, like any one of the multiple times he has come to the realization (after the fact) that Caroline is only playing his feelings in order for her to get what she and the group needs from him.  And Big Bad Klaus really does love his family, as evident when he witnessed his brother’s death at the Gilbert house last season… even if he has previously daggered them (which in essence puts them in a deep sleep until the dagger is removed) so they wouldn’t interfere with his plans.

❤ Klaus

But here’s where it gets tricky: The Vampire Diaries can’t really be all about Klaus, now can it?  Not when Elena, Stefan, and Damon are the main characters of the show.  And not when the supporting cast already has as many characters as it does.  That’s a lot of screen time to share.  So what’s the next best thing for Klaus?

Give Klaus an opportunity at his own show!  Originally airing as an episode of The Vampire Diaries on April 24th, viewers caught a glimpse of what it would be like having Klaus, Elijah, and Rebekah outside Mystic Falls.  Instead of hanging out at all the same locations as our TVD kids, this backdoor pilot took us to New Orleans.   This then potential spinoff followed our favorite Originals and introduced us to a few new vamps, witches, and humans, as well as brought along Tyler’s seductive werewolf friend, Haley (the beautiful Phoebe Tonkin).

Queen Haley?

Within a day of the backdoor pilot airing on the CW, The Originals was given the green light.  I watched it.  And I liked it.  It was a breath of fresh air, stepping away from boring Elena and Stefan.  The pilot had it all—Klaus’ old vampire running mates, witches and their spells, and the promise of a hybrid baby.

Oh, and I almost forgot—King Klaus.

The only thing missing was my beloved Damon.

Marcel better watch his back…

So how did Klaus make his way back to his old stomping grounds?  He was summoned by a witch.  There’s only one problem:

Marcel, Klaus’ former protégé…

Marcel (Charles Michael Davis) stepped in when Klaus left and now he runs New Orleans.  One of his rules?  No witch can use magic.  And when he learned of this particular witch casting spells, the one who unbeknownst to him summoned Klaus, Marcel killed her in the street in front of all to see (including Klaus) to set an example of her.

And now that Klaus is back, Marcel has no intentions of relinquishing his power to his former “father.”  But that’s okay because Klaus has no intentions of working with Marcel to get it back.  He’ll take it the Klaus way—by whatever means necessary.

That, plus the witches are holding hostage Klaus’ first hybrid baby (Haley is pregnant with “a magical miracle baby”).  While Klaus is putting up a tough front and acting as if he doesn’t care about the baby, his siblings (Elijah, played by Daniel Gillies, and Rebekah, played by Claire Holt) know all too well that all Klaus has ever wanted was a family.  And power.  And loyalty.

After having seen The Originals first episode, I awarded it the MacTV rating.  For a pilot, it really wasn’t all that slow, nor did it throw too much information at the viewers all at once.  I’m sure that’s because the characters were already developed through their seasons on The Vampire Diaries, but still—it was a bonus for a new program.

Now well into the season of the new series, I’m downgrading it just a bit to the JFTV rating.  This downgrade is not because I don’t like the series.  I do.  The Originals is a fresh escape from TVD.  But I am behind and I don’t have the urge to catch up right away—even though I know I will dig back in eventually, just like the classic junk food items we try to avoid.  After all, it has vampires, witches, and werewolves—Oh My!

What do you think—do you watch The Originals?  I’d love to hear from you!

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV):It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (NyQuil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech
Inedible TV: Exactly how it sounds…

*****

Tiffany A. White is the author of the YA mystery Football Sweetheart series available on Kindle and Nook.  She is available for contact via Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or via email at tiffany {at} tiffanyawhite {dot} com.

Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday – TV with a Crazy Cult Following

Television’s winter premiere season is officially here!  We’re currently down to the very last of the new shows premiering this TV season, but Amber West and I still have our work cut out for us.  And we have had so much fun these past few weeks posting dual reviews, we’ve decided to do it again!  Will Amber and I agree or disagree after watching the CW’s new drama, Cult?

Who was sad when The Vampire Diaries killed Alaric at the end of last season?  I know I was.  Of course, even though Alaric is technically dead, we have seen him a few times this season as a ghost, hovering around his buddy Damon… but maybe not for much longer.

Why?  Because the CW has given Matt Davis (TVD‘s Alaric) a new television series—Cult.

Basically, Cult is a CW show about a CW show within a CW show.  Is anyone lost yet?  Don’t worry; the pilot episode is just about as confusing, but it gets better.

Cult follows journalist Jeff Sefton (Davis) as he investigates the disappearance of his brother.  His brother had rambled on and on to Jeff about how one of his favorite TV shows—a show about the cat and mouse game between a cult’s leader and his ex-lover/detective chasing him—was out to get him, but Jeff wrote it off as paranoia.  TV shows don’t come after people, right?  But when his brother goes missing, Jeff learns that the television series (also titled “Cult”) his brother talked about does indeed have a rabid fan base who might just be committing the crimes as shown on the series.

Jeff is not alone… working alongside him, and hoping to unravel the secrets behind the “Cult” TV show and its fan base, is Skye Yarrow (Jessica Lucas, Melrose Place and Cloverfield).  Skye works as a production assistant for “Cult”; but like Jeff, she thinks something just isn’t quite right about the television series, the fans, or its creator/writer… which is why she accepted the position on the production staff to do research for the show in the first place—to investigate.

They can’t trust the police; the lead investigator into Jeff’s brother’s disappearance has the “Cult” symbol tattooed on her inner wrist.   Additionally, anyone they find to question about the TV show or Jeff’s brother either kills themselves or talks in circles, not making much sense.  And if that’s not bad enough, we, the viewers know that Jeff and Skye need to be very careful during this investigation because anyone who supports or suggests change to the writer’s direction (script/character development) or the fan base finds themselves at the mercy of the “Cult” cult members and/or its tribal leaders.

Clues keep falling into place, leading Jeff and Skye to fear the worst—something sinister is definitely going on surrounding the show and its fans.  First, there’s a disc that, when uploaded, releases all of the user’s personal information to “Cult.”  Skye claims this is harmless and just a fun tactic in order for the character of Billy to thank the show’s fans by sending them a video message saying, “You’re next.”

“You’re Next.”

Secondly, there are the 3-D glasses that allow the user to see beyond what’s visible to the human eye, revealing puzzles, symbols, computer codes, and other patterns.  There’s also the mysterious gold coin (we’re not sure of the danger associated with it yet) and the car… the car that also happens to be around off the set as well, especially where the mysterious “real-life” crimes are taking place.

All of these items not only have meaning within the TV show within the show, making them all popular series souvenirs for the “Cult” fans, but also in the “real” world—the world where Jeff and Skye live.  Somehow and someway, these items will reveal the answers, but will Jeff and Skye figure it all out before it’s too late?

Because of the unique premise of a show about a show within a show, Cult has some very witty dialogue about what TV programs need to do today in order to be successful.  I like that.  And speaking of dialogue, there is a super-creepy message all of the characters repeat just before dying (both on the show and in the show on the show):

snap

What the heck does that mean?  What does it mean?  Anyone? Anyone?

As with any new show, sometimes the casting helps to attract viewers.  In addition to Matt Davis and Jessica Lucas, the new CW series also stars: Alona Tal (Cane and Supernatural) as Marti, an actress playing Kelly on “Cult”—a former member of the cult and ex-lover of the leader; Roger Knepper (Heroes and Prison Break) as Roger Reeves, an actor playing Billy Grimm on “Cult”—the leader of the cult; and a few some might recognize in recurring roles from the teen television series The Inbetweeners (Marie Avgeropoulos) and Degrassi: The Next Generation (Stacey Farber and Ben Hollingsworth).

So how does Cult rank?  I’ve been anxiously awaiting this new series, and while the pilot episode confused me more than anything else, the second episode redeemed itself.  Not to mention, I need to know more; I must know more.  Therefore, I’m giving the new CW series the JFTV rating.  There’s really nothing about the show that is all that beneficial to us, kind of like that bag of greasy potato chips we continuously dig into, but it sucks us in… like a cult.

Oh, and the CW recently moved Cult from its Tuesday night slot to Fridays… maybe that was the plan all along, or maybe this is the kiss of death.  I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

What do you think?  Have you watched Cult?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Now click over to Amber’s blog and see what she thinks about the new CW series.  Did we agree or disagree?  Trust me; we usually have very different tastes in our television viewing pleasure….

Come back next week when Amber and I review something…

Remember to stop by the #watchwed hashtag in Twitter to discuss any of today’s reviews, or to mention any television programs that you’d like to see on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday in the future.

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV):It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (NyQuil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech
Inedible TV: Exactly how it sounds…

Death and Evolution with The Vampire Diaries and The Originals

For as long as I can remember, I have been a fan of the supernatural on TV.  Since the conclusion of Charmed and Buffy, I found a small void in my television viewing that needed to be filled.  Luckily for me, and the rest of the female population, we did have one program to keep us entertained in the meantime—Supernatural—but I’m greedy and wanted more.  Which is why when the CW launched The Vampire Diaries, I immediately set my DVR.

To me, there are three main characters of The Vampire Diaries: Elena Gilbert, Stefan Salvatore, and Damon Salvatore.  Now for whatever reason, I’ve never been an Elena or a Stefan fan.  However, Damon caught my eye and captured my heart from the get go.

But The Vampire Diaries is more than just Elena and the Salvatore brothers.  First, we have the three high school boys that make up Elena’s inner circle: Matt, Jeremy, and Tyler.  Next, we have Elena’s best friends: Bonnie and Caroline.  Not only are all five of these supporting cast members absolutely gorgeous, they’re likable… even when they act like the jock who’s better than everyone else (Tyler), or the ex-boyfriend who continues to be a doormat (Matt), or the little brother who will do anything to fit in (Jeremy), or the cheerleader who has to lead every single school activity… her way (Caroline).

This is the closest thing to a group still that I could find… even if Elena, Tyler, and Caroline’s backs are to us.

Heck, even a few of the late-comers won me over more than Elena and Stefan ever have.  Take the older Alaric as an example.  Perhaps I liked Alaric because he was closer to my age, as well as a nice piece of eye candy.  But even when he was a hunter and he was trying to kill the vampire population, I still had a small TV crush on him.

Throughout the seasons, each character has become more and more evolved as well, building stronger and stronger individual arcs and making viewers like me appreciate them more than I already did.  Matt is the only human remaining out of the original cast members; Jeremy was cursed as a hunter; Tyler transformed into a werewolf and later into a hybrid (werewolf/vampire combination), courtesy of Klaus; Bonnie inherited her family’s ability to cast spells and has evolved into a powerful witch; and Katherine, Elena’s evil doppelganger, turned Caroline into a vampire, making her into what my family likes to call “Vampire Barbie.”  Even boring Elena and Stefan have turned it up a notch since the beginning with Elena now joining the vampire ranks and the on/again off/again moments where viewers experience “bad” Stefan, or Ripper Stefan.

And as the seasons roll by, the same remains true: I find myself still preferring everyone BUT Elena and Stefan—even the “bad” vamps (Katherine, Rebekah, and the super-sexy Klaus).

Jenna and Alaric…

Many other characters have come and gone over the years, some by means of shocking deaths, but nothing could have prepared me for what transpired recently.  Since it has been over a week since the last new episode aired, I imagine it’s safe to discuss what happened.  But if anyone has yet to catch up, now would be the time to look away.

Previously, viewers had watched as Elena witnessed Klaus kill her aunt Jenna.  Jenna didn’t play a huge role, but she was involved enough to make many of us cry when she died.  Then there was Alaric’s death.  I, like so many, thought for sure he didn’t really die… the show would not do that… Alaric was one of the most popular characters on the show… he was the last adult/family figure to poor, orphaned Jeremy and Elena… but the writers really did kill him off.  There was hope for a little while that Alaric would be back as a ghost, and we saw him visit his buddy Damon a few times; but now the actor who played Alaric has his own CW show, so it’s doubtful he’ll be back now.

But the most recent death comes as the most shocking—Jeremy.  Prior to his suffering the hunter’s curse, we watched human Jeremy die multiple times; but as long as he was wearing his family ring at the time of his death, he could not die from a supernatural attack.  So when the new evil vamp, Silas, drained Jeremy of all his blood and snapped his neck, viewers still had hope—as did Elena.  But the ring no longer protected Jeremy; after all, he was a hunter now, a supernatural being in his own right.  His death was real this time and heart wrenching.  And even the usual boring and whiney Elena touched me when she finally realized her baby brother was gone for good this time, especially when she burned his corpse and her family home to the ground.

Jeremy… how the little Gilbert has matured over the years.

Why this was the direction the writers and creators felt the need to take is beyond me.  Perhaps the actor who played Jeremy wanted to pursue other projects… okay, send him away for a while like has been done in the past with both his character and Tyler’s.  But kill him?  And burn him?  Look, I’m a writer and understand we have to kill off our characters sometimes, but this seems like emotional overkill if you ask me.

Who knows if Jeremy will appear in any more episodes… even if he does, there’s no telling what these said appearances will entail—could be flashbacks, could be hauntings; but regardless, it won’t be the same without him.

Only three things can redeem the direction of this season for me at this point: “bad” Elena (Damon used his sire bond to turn her humanity off when she realized Jeremy was indeed dead), more Damon, and more Klaus.

Klaus… he’s so misunderstood.

Klaus—the evil Original with the sexy accent we’ve all grown to love over the years.  I’ve actually wanted to hug Klaus multiple times, and he’s supposed to be the BIG EVIL of the show.  Poor Klaus is so misunderstood and he really does let his feelings get the best of him, like any one of the multiple times he has come to the realization after the fact that Caroline is only playing his feelings for her to get what she and the group needs from him.  And Big Bad Klaus really does love his family, as evident when he witnessed his brother’s death at the Gilbert house this season… even if he has previously daggered them so they don’t interfere with his plans.

But The Vampire Diaries can’t really be all about Klaus, now can it?  Not when Elena, Stefan, and Damon are the main characters of the show.  And not when the supporting cast already has as many characters as it does with Matt, Jeremy, Tyler, Bonnie, and Caroline.  That’s a lot of screen time to share.  So what’s the next best thing for Klaus?

Give Klaus an opportunity at his own show!  Airing as an episode of The Vampire Diaries on April 24th, viewers will catch a glimpse of what it will be like having Klaus, Elijah, and Rebekah outside Mystic Falls.  Instead, this backdoor pilot will take place in New Orleans.   The potential spinoff will follow our favorite Originals and introduce a few new vamps, witches, and humans, as well as bring along Tyler’s seductive werewolf friend, Haley.

I can see Haley being a real pain in Klaus’s side…

A few years ago, Fox tested the waters of a new drama by airing a backdoor pilot during an episode of the hit, Bones.  “The Finder” episode did well enough to land its own spot on the Fox lineup and lasted all of one season before it was cancelled.  Let’s hope “The Originals” pulls in a high enough ranking for the CW to grant it a full season order, giving us more Damon screen time on The Vampire Diaries and more Klaus all at the same time.  Only this go around, let’s hope the long-term results fare better for our favorite bloodsucking Originals than it did the cast of The Finder.

After all, I would personally love another hour of supernatural TV to watch every week…

How about you?  What do you think about The Vampire Diaries most recent death?  Do you plan to check out “The Originals” when it airs?  I’d love to hear from you! 

Tele-Tuesday: Renew Ringer, Seriously

In January of this year, I blogged about the first half of the first season of the CW’s mysterious new series Ringer, starring Sarah Michelle Gellar as twin sisters Bridget Kelly and Siobhan Martin.  I not only blogged about it not once, but twice — once on Tele-Tuesday and again a bit later on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday.

Even after the first half of the season, I felt that Ringer was one of the best new shows added to the 2011-2012 TV schedule.  Recently, I watched the second half of the season in marathon style.  The season finale aired just a few weeks ago and now the news is circling that Ringer is one of the CW’s programs “on the bubble.”

How can that be?

I love the CW and DVR most of the network’s series: Gossip Girl, 90210, The Vampire Diaries, The Secret Circle, and Supernatural.  So I guess it’s technically a shorter list to mention the CW programs that I don’t watch: Hart of Dixie and Nikita.

I’m not going to say one way or another whether or not Hart of Dixie and Nikita deserve to be picked up for a season two and season three respectively because I don’t watch those programs.  I will say, however, that the revamped 90210 has nothing on the original and I’m shocked that it is still on the air.  Yes, I record it; and yes, I watch it (well I fast forward through the entire episode like I do soap operas, and still understand enough to move on to the next week) — but it’s really subpar TV.  And then there’s Gossip GirlGossip Girl is leaps and bounds better than 90210, but still the most recent seasons are nowhere near as intriguing and twisted as the earlier years (when the kids were in high school).

Over the next few weeks, the CW is introducing two new shows to the schedule: a fictionalized series based on the young and beautiful trying to make it in Hollywood, The L.A. Complex (sounds like another stab at the Melrose Place years); and a reality series based out of a Miami hotel, The Catalina (I shudder to think that this looks like a hotel-style based Jersey Shore).

So I’m back to my original question, how is it possible that Ringer is on the bubble?

It’s been no secret around The Ooo Factor regarding my feeling towards ABC’s new hit, RevengeRevenge is currently my favorite program of all series airing today and I would be shocked if ABC didn’t renew it, considering the following it has and the ratings.

Ringer and Revenge share many similarities – they’re both mysterious and full of twists and turns; both shows have creative and believable writing in otherwise over-the-top situations; both shows have likeable lead female characters despite their actions (Ringer’s Sarah Michelle Gellar and Revenge’s Emily VanCamp); both shows have good-looking male love interests (Ioan Gruffudd and Kristoffer Polaha from Ringer, and Joshua Bowman and Nick Wechler from Revenge); and most importantly to this mystery lover, both shows actually answer the question “why” and wrap up open storylines cleanly and meticulously.

From my earlier posts featuring Ringer, there were a few specific questions I hoped would be answered in the second half of the season: Why does Siobhan hate her sister so much?  When will Andrew discover the truth?  How long will Siobhan and Bridget keep up this charade?  And what is Mr. Carpenter’s secret?

Each and every one of these questions was answered.  That doesn’t happen often, trust me — I watch a LOT of TV.  Additionally, the first season was wrapped up very nicely with only the slightest cliff-hanger leaving us wanting more.  Perhaps the series was written this way because the staff didn’t know at the time whether or not the show would be picked up for a season two; or maybe this storyline was the plan all along.  Regardless, I applaud the writers and creators of Ringer.  Really, I do.

But I’m still left wondering how in the world Ringer can be on the bubble when Revenge is practically a shoe-in for pick up (it should be, anyway).  How can Ringer be on the bubble when it’s, in my opinion anyway, the fourth best show on the network?

I’m completely dumbfounded…

What do you think?  Did you watch Ringer?  What did you think about all of the outcomes surrounding all of Bridget’s, Siobhan’s, and Andrew’s twists and turns?  Is one of your favorite shows this TV season facing a questionable return?  I’d love to hear from you!

For those interested, follow @SaveRinger and use the #SaveRinger hashtag on Twitter… spread the word.  I’d like to see a season two, especially since the creators have already announced a season two will be all about the consequences…

Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday – Two Worlds, One Ringer

This week on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday, Amber West and I review two new programs to the 2011-2012 television schedule whose plots are based on dual realities – NBC’s new drama, Awake, where the protagonist lives in alternate realities depending on whether or not he is dreaming; and the CW’s new mystery, Ringer, where the protagonist is choosing to live in another reality, her twin sister’s world.

Ringer stars Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) as twin sisters Bridget Kelly and Siobhan Martin.

The sisters share a troubled past – Bridget is a former narcotics user and stripper, and Siobhan cut ties from Bridget when she married a millionaire New York City hedge fund manager, leaving her normal life and sister behind.  But after a few years apart, the girls suddenly decide to move past previously made mistakes and mend their relationship, or so it seems.

The series begins as Bridget runs to her wealthy sister, Siobhan, after she witnesses a mob hit and escapes protective custody just before testifying in court.  A few days into the happy reunion, Siobhan disappears herself (making it look like an apparent suicide).  Bridget panics, like most would, but then realizes that this is her perfect opportunity to escape her past and assume her sister’s identity.

And so the story begins….

Bridget’s first matter of business is to convince Siobhan’s husband (Andrew Martin, played by Ioan Gruffudd) that she is her sister.  She learns rather quickly that the two share a rocky, tumultuous marriage, and her new husband doesn’t seem to like her very much.  Andrew’s teenage daughter from a previous marriage really hates Siobhan (Juliet Martin, played by Zoey Deutch), and she lashes out constantly by skipping school, doing drugs, and destroying things around the penthouse.

Siobhan's husband, Andrew

As if Siobhan’s life at home wasn’t enough of a disaster, Bridget soon discovers that her sister was also having an affair with Henry Butler (Kristoffer Polaha), the husband of her best friend (Gemma Butler, played by Tara Summers).

Siobhan's boyfriend and best friend's husband, Henry

Just as Bridget begins to manage all of the lies her sister is living, the FBI agent tasked with protecting her during the trial (Agent Victor Machado, played by Nestor Carbonell) arrives in New York with a few questions for Siobhan.

The FBI agent tasked with protecting Bridget, Victor

Meanwhile, Bridget’s Narcotics Anonymous sponsor and apparent lover (Malcolm Ward, played by Mike Colter) is abducted by the drug lord/mob boss looking for her back home, beaten within an inch of his life, and reacquainted with black tar heroin.  Malcolm might just be the hero of the show; despite the torture, he doesn’t disclose Bridget’s secret and he still manages to escape and travel to NYC to protect her.

Bridget's NA Sponsor and one-time lover, Malcolm

Everything is just too much, so Bridget (aka Siobhan) seeks out a new NA sponsor in the city and meets Charlie (Billy Miller).  Charlie seems eager to help, not only with her constant battle with relapse, but also with the many matters surrounding her double life.  People can trust sponsors, right?

Bridget's new NA sponsor and dirty former cop, Charlie

Oh, and did we mention the “real” Siobhan (who is camped out in Paris under an assumed identity) is pregnant?  That’s an interesting twist…Bridget gets the call from Siobhan’s doctor and has to pretend she’s pregnant; meanwhile, Henry thinks the baby is his; Andrew of course thinks the baby is his; and Siobhan’s new Parisian lover (Tyler, played by Justin Bruening) now thinks the baby is his.  This lady is a mess.

Siobhan's Parisian boy-toy and her husband's business associate, Tyler

To make matters worse, Bridget doesn’t do a bang up job keeping her secret – Gemma discovers the truth: that the “real” Siobhan is sleeping with her husband, and that Bridget is assuming her sister’s identity.  When Gemma threatens to blow the top off Bridget’s lies, she disappears.   Henry comes home to find blood all over the walls and a broken vase, and immediately cleans the mess up to protect Siobhan.  But when he confronts Siobhan (aka Bridget), she of course thinks he did something to Gemma – why else would he cover up the evidence?

Confused yet?  Remember, the “real” Siobhan is the puppet master pulling all the strings; Bridget is only trying to survive in Siobhan’s world.

And this ladies and gentleman is just the beginning…

Because of the non-stop twists and turns, I must award Ringer with the JFTV rating – it’s the perfect Junk Food Television.  I sat and watched the entire first half of the season in mini-marathon style.  See, I record the series each week, but wasn’t intrigued enough at first to watch; but once I started the episodes, I couldn’t stop – just like when I pick up a bag of Hershey’s miniatures from Costco — someone needs to pull the bag of chocolate away from me in order for me to stop popping the delicious delights in my mouth one right after the other.

I enjoyed my mini-marathon of the first half of the season so much, I’m currently stock-piling the second half of the season for another marathon-style viewing party.  I’m just waiting for that perfect Saturday…

What do you think? Do you watch Ringer?  Which of Siobhan and Bridget’s men is your favorite and why?  I’d love to hear from you!

Now click over to Amber’s blog and read her thoughts on the masterfully creative dual realities of Awake.

Come back next week when Amber and I review two new (or maybe old) TV shows.  We like to keep everyone on their toes.

Remember to stop by the #watchwed hashtag in Twitter to discuss any of today’s reviews, or to mention any television programs that you’d like to see on Why It’s Worth a Watch Wednesday in the future.

A Recap of The WatchWed Review System:

GTV (Gourmet TV): Everything we want and more
MacTV (MacNCheese TV): Guilty pleasure. Not perfect, but is satisfies
GMacTV (Gourmet MacNCheese TV): A combination of fine wine and comfort food
JFTV (Junk food TV): It’s not great for us, but we’ll go back for seconds
TBPTV (Twice Baked Potato TV): Part gourmet and delicious, while absolutely horrible for our cholesterol
SSTV (Still Simmering TV): It has potential, but the jury is still out
NIV (Nyquil Induced Viewing): Perfect for that late night television sleep timer
LOTV (Liver&Onions TV): Do we really have to explain? Blech

Tele-Tuesday: TV with Bite

Vampires are especially hot right now, but technically the story of the television vampire has been popular for decades.

The history and mythology of the vampire has us believing the following to be true for the supernatural creatures: vampires have super strength, lightening fast speed, immortality, eternal youth, and no souls (therefore no conscience).  Vampires have pale skin and are cool to the touch.  They fear holy water, crucifixes, and garlic, and sunlight will burn their flesh.  Vampires sleep in coffins during the daylight hours, and walk the night in search of food, or play toys; whichever you prefer to call it.  A vampire doesn’t have a reflection and can’t enter one’s residence without a proper invitation from the homeowner.  And, most importantly, a vampire experiences the most excruciating hunger that only blood will satisfy.

Intriguing, right? But there’s more!

More often than not, the television vampire is sexy.  Whether the blood-sucker is male or female, the character is both mesmerizing and seducing, and has the power of extreme mind control.  The older TV series show their vampires transforming into bats, giving them the ability to fly away; today, the vampire possesses lightening fast speed and doesn’t have to shape shift anymore.

Over the years, the television vampire has adapted and has discovered a few ways around previous restrictions.  For one, the vampire has emulated today’s watchful eaters, such as vegetarians.  Instead of feeding on human blood, vampires may drink only the blood of animals.  Spells and elixirs have assisted today’s vampire in walking among the living in broad daylight.  And garlic?  It’s been left behind as an old superstition.

Are you hooked yet?

Future TV with Bite posts will discuss vampire television in further details, but the list below provides just a taste of my television favorites:

Dark Shadows, 1966-1971 – ABC; 1991 – NBC; 2004 – The WB, and syndicated on Chiller today

Vampire Barnabas Collins (Ben Cross) hides his curse from the young and beautiful Victoria Winters (Joanna Going) who just happens to resemble Barnabas’ previous love hundreds of years ago.

Forever Knight 1989, 1993-1996 -CBS, and syndicated on Chiller today

Detective/Vampire Nick Knight (Geraint Wyn Davies) fights crime in an attempt to make up for his cold-blooded killings centuries before.  He manages to keep his secret from everyone, including his partner, except for the medical examiner/confidant, Dr. Natalie Lambert (Catherine Disher), who provides him at times with human blood.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 1997-2003 – The WB, and syndicated on multiple channels today

A young teenage slayer, Buffy Summers (Sarah Michelle Gellar), works alongside her watcher, her witchy best friend, Willow (Alyson Hannigan) , her vampire boyfriends, Angel (David Boreanaz) and Spike (James Marsters), her human friends Xander (Nicholas Brendon) and Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter), an occasional werewolf (Seth Green) and demon (Emma Caulfield), and fellow slayer (Eliza Dushku) to protect Sunnydale from the Big Bad.

Angel, 1999-2004- The WB, and syndicated on multiple channels today

A popular spinoff from Buffy, Angel (Boreanaz) and Cordelia (Carpenter) continue to battle evil in the search for Angel’s internalized redemption alongside with new minions: Wesley (Alexis Denisof), Charles (Jaime Augusto Richards III), Winifred (Amy Acker), and Connor (Vincent Kartheiser).

Moonlight2007-2008– CBS, syndicated on Chiller and SyFy today

Private Investigator/Vampire Mick St. John (Alex O’Laughlin) and reporter, Beth (Sophia Myles), fall in love while keeping Los Angeles and Mick’s secret safe.  Mick, however, keeps an even larger secret from Beth – his vampire wife, Coraline (Shannyn Sossamon), had kidnapped Beth as a little girl, and he was the one who saved her decades ago.  Moonlight may have only lasted the one year, however it remains one of my absolute favorites.

Two of the most popular television shows on today revolve around the vampire world, True Blood on HBO, and The Vampire Diaries on The CW.  These shows are so hot, they require a future Tele-Tuesday post all their own.

While not airing new episodes, these vamp series live-on in the ever-popular syndication world: Kolchak: The Night Stalker, 1974-1975 (Chiller and SyFy); Kindred: The Embraced, 1996 (Chiller); and Blood Ties, 2007, (syndicated outside the United States).  Chiller and SyFy run a different marathon every day making it easy to catch up on these older series; check them out!

What are your thoughts on the mythological versus the television vampires?  Which is your favorite vampire television series of all time?  Who is your favorite television vampire?  Do you think these television shows will live forever like their eternal characters, or will someone jab a stake through their heart?  I’d love to hear from you!

%d bloggers like this: