The Moth Chase

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

Posts Tagged ‘Stefan Salvatore

Happy Graduation Cupcake!

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Dear Kathryn,

While I’m excited for The Originals, this episode actually gave me a craving for a different spinoff – something like, The Other Side, maybe? I mean, Lexi, Alaric, Kole, the witches – these guys made the show fun again! I was, in fact, much more bummed than their best friends seemed to be when each one slipped away. At least Bonnie got some sort of a farewell – but of course, our biggest concerns with her (i.e., that her power would kill her rather than empower her) came true in an pretty amplified way. Not only did she die as punishment for her strength, but she got a kind of double, definitive death, giving up her life to save the guy. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy to have Jeremy back. He’s actually become a surprisingly mature voice of reason on the show! But in an episode heavy-handedly exploring the theme of selfishness and self-sacrifice, it’s exhausting to me that the ultimate sacrifice is paid by the only strong black woman on the show in order to save the life of a white man. Read the rest of this entry »

Isolation leads to misery

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She’s Come Undone

OK, so I’m over torture as a regular device on a teen soap opera. It barely seems worth pointing out how many things are wrong with the assumption that inflicting intense physical and psychological trauma on anybody (even somebody who heals so fast we barely have to see the effects of the torture) is a good way “to make them human.” Much less given Stubenville and the likes what is wrong with the picture of two dashing young men torturing a young woman who doesn’t feel what they want her to feel. There is so much wrong with all of this. But it is all so blase, I’m with Rebekha and Katherine on this one: yawn. And don’t even get me started on why everyone has stopped mentioning that all of this is Damon’s fault in the first place since he commanded a then-sired Elena to turn off her emotions. It really does seem like the interesting gender dynamics of seasons past have devolved into male agents whose actions are barely questioned and female agents who suffer their affects and then are blamed for them. I’d ask you to help me come up with a better interpretation, but I’m not sure I care. Read the rest of this entry »

The Originals

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Marcel!

The Originals

Well there are certainly better reasons to bring a new life into this world than building a dynasty so you can steal the warmth, love, community and power that another man has spent his considerable eternal life building! Then again, if we take the “king” metaphor seriously, this is pretty much how reproduction works, right? The women may not be kept locked up in an alligator infested bayou to see out their pregnancies, but Hallie was transformed from potential bad-ass hybrid looking for her roots into a kind of walking womb to rebirth all the Originals hopes and dreams. I do love Elijah’s optimism that what is left of that clan will surely do a better job as parents and aunts/uncles than they did as children and siblings! I can only assume that this is the set up for the new spin-off series The Originals. And I have to admit, if last night was any indication, I might be switching teams! Read the rest of this entry »

Good is a hard word to live up to

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Matt and Rebekah

Well vervain is out of the Mystic Falls water supply and the best the vampires can think to do is compel a shopkeeper to steal a prom dress. Then again, we are talking about the highlight of senior year, so maybe I need to keep my priorities straight. My favorite part of last night’s episode was the hope of the gang that high school nostalgia – “friendship and memories” as Caroline says to a trying-her-best-to-be-giddy Bonnie – would be the thing to switch Elena’s humanity back on. I was a bit confused that this was a new tactic (haven’t Damon and Stefan constantly been trying to get Elena to turn back on her humanity? Why was this suddenly presented as a new plan?), but loved that it let the show play with the “what makes us human” question all over again. Read the rest of this entry »

Here We Go

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Dear Kathryn,

Sooo, am I the only one who is a bit concerned about how easily these kids moved to a nuclear option?? There was no good reason to kill rather than just dagger Kol that didn’t land squarely on the immediate needs and desires of our crew. Sure, Jeremy’s mark gets completed with a “single” kill (and btw, I laughed uproariously at the Hulk style ripping of the shirt at the end – pure cheese! I loved it!). But it’s not a single kill! It’s something more like dropping a nuclear bomb on thousands of people from the safety of an undisclosed location. How long can they pretend to themselves that they haven’t directly killed anyone? I hope we get to see the devastation at some point – the effects of their actions. There has to be some payoff for their utter lack of moral  deliberation. Given the constant turning to violent video games throughout the episode, I can’t help but wonder if there was a real level of self-awareness on the writers’ part – a constant subliminal reminder of how distanced we all are from the violence that holds our lives together. Pair that with the weird cancelled 80’s dance, which evoked a nostalgia for the era in which the Cold War played out (do the kids watching this show, all born around 1995, I would think, even get those references??)…and I can’t help but wonder what political subtext is going on here? For me, I’m reminded of the drone warfare that tricks us into thinking we’re targeting specific ‘bad-guys’ – even as its collateral damage is terrifying and moral implications remain largely outside the realm of genuine public consideration. But I’m abundantly aware that kids watching this show just want to see their favourite characters hook up and have what they want – and so they, like our characters, are probably willing to go nuclear too. Read the rest of this entry »

You are in complete control

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Shane the father figure

Dear Natalie,

Yes, it is good to be back! I am sorry I missed the conversation last week, which was a truly fun episode, but glad to jump back in now, where themes of self-control and compulsion were front and center. You wondered last week about whether or not compulsion was something a vampire could throw off. Damon reminded us that Stefan did that with Klaus when he’d been compelled to turn off his humanity. There is something fascinating going on with the idea that Stefan was able to shake compulsion because of his love for Elena, but Damon is not. I’m not sure it proves that Stefan loves Elena more than Damon does, but it does fit with Stefan’s more controlling personality! Stefan is the kind of person for whom the idea of love – and the idea of Elena – is necessary to hold on to his humanity. Without he always spirals into some uncaring psychopath. Read the rest of this entry »

Beyond Good and Evil

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Dear Kathryn,

Oh, it’s good to be back – despite some of those overly-expositional scenes (esp: Rebecca making our crew re-narrate things we all already know), I thought this was a lovely re-immersion into Mystic Falls following the Christmas hiatus. The closing scene, soul music filling the dusty air of an abandoned bar, Matt in his letterman jacket, and vamps beginning to stir ended it all with a nostalgic sheen. In fact, it seemed to me that temporality was an important theme throughout. Read the rest of this entry »

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