Moonlight: Arrested Development

“Maybe it’s the sum of a million coincidences beyond our control that brings us to a particular place at a particular time.”

It’s all about fate, and everything that gets in the way of fate. In our plot of the week, the killer vampire’s immortality was ruined by a cruel twist of fate (and some really bad acne)—Mick and Beth are just as cursed, only with slightly more epic problems.

The young vampire is stuck in perpetual teen agony, even though he was 197 and a half years old. It’s not just the bad skin (although that makes little vampire-medicinal sense), but the lack of impulse control, the gloomy moodiness, and sense of being both separate from everyone, and better than them, that’s making his unlife so very hard. He wants a girlfriend, but he can’t connect, and he hates both the longing and the lack of connection. Instant vampire serial killer.

Mick and Beth have slightly more relatable problems: fate seems to be pushing them towards each other, despite the perils of vampire sex, Beth’s boyfriend Josh, and—especially—Mick’s own unwillingness to open up, or even call Beth back. Because fate works in concert with free will and the choices we make. If we don’t make those choices, the development of our relationships gets arrested. (That is the message of the week, right?)

Mick’s got some baggage, too: when teen-vamp asked him if he’d every really loved someone, he flashed-back on Coraline. That was a surprise, but it makes sense: Mick’s been watching and protecting Beth for years. Getting to know her put a new kink in the relationship; showing her his dark side out in the desert made him feel so vulnerable that he’s pulling back.

All that emotional stuff was great, and I’m impressed that the show is balancing stand-alone mysteries with more personal arcs. I liked Mick’s clever narratorial asides. But this episode had some flaws, too: the running around on the pier was hokey, the music was overwhelming, and the surprise of “he’s just a teenager!” um, wasn’t. The swapping out of Cherish for Jazzmyn seemed unnecessary, too—it’s an old detective novel trick, but it wasn’t done with much elegance here. Luckily, Sophia Myles and Alex O’Loughlin were able, once again, to rise above some silly plotting.

Bites:

• Josh: “I cooked a chicken for you!”

• Morgue Guy: “Hey, you pay me fifty bucks to see a dead girl naked, I assume you’re up for anything.”

• Mick: “I’ll bite.”
Beth: “That’s an understatement.”

• Beth: “Vampires make really bad liars.” She’s not wrong, at least where Mick is concerned.

• Friend: “Fate’s fine, but at some point the human’s got to take action.”

• Techie: “Voted most like to succeed by her high school class. Not sure how the others fared, but that’s seeming unlikely at this point.”

• Techie: “1730 Los Feliz. If the plan is for today, you might want to hurry.” In my experience, it takes hours to get to Los Feliz from just about everywhere else in LA.

And Pieces:

• A vampire’s maturity level stays at the age he was turned. That explains Josef, Mick, and even the middle-aged astrophysicist from last week. I think.

• Josef? Still fabulous.

Two and a half out of four Ferris wheels of fate.

Josie Kafka is a full-time cat servant and part-time rogue demon hunter. (What's a rogue demon?)

2 comments:

Gwen said...

"Josef? Still fabulous." Of course, Josef is always amazing. His character is the major reason I kept watching Moonlight and mourned its sorrowful but swift demise. Mick and Beth are fine, and I really don't have much to complain about with their characters, but Josef was way more interesting than Mick. Kind of like how Eric is way more fun and interesting than Bill.

Billie Doux said...

Personally, I loved fate bringing Mick and Beth together at, of all places, the morgue. And Josef, who just met Beth, staring at her intently with an amused expression on his face. And Beth was pretending to be Jazmynn on the phone.

Teenage vampire serial killer, not so much, although death by roller coaster was different. Sort of an appropriate death for an evil teenager, though.