Techie vamps and timeless diaries

I am taking a break from my “Vampire Diaries” marathon while writing this. I have decided to devote my weekend finishing season one of this TV series; and after tweeting much about this show for a week now, I just realized I’m addicted to it!

Other vampire shows didn’t catch my attention over the past year of the “Twilight” madness. On the other hand, “The Vampire Diaries” piqued my curiosity as if I allowed the bloodsucking stars enter my home, look into my eyes and lure me into finishing all the episodes. Unexpectedly, the series did not end up boring. Its love triangle twist is totally far from the Edward-Bella-Jacob thing.

In this American television series, Elena (Nina Dobrev) falls in love with the mysterious-new-guy-in-school named Stefan (Paul Wesley) who turns out to be a 162-year-old vampire. Their relationship is challenged by Stefan’s vengeful brother, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) which complicates the story. Suspense, action, drama and mystery are packed in one show. This “Dawson’s Creek-meets-Buffy” kind of series from CW Television Network also introduces witches and more vampires as the story progresses.

What got me even more stuck in watching this show is its very realistic location. Set in a modern-day community, scenes are shot in semi-eerie, romantic and mysterious areas in British Columbia and Georgia that perfectly represent the fictional town of Mystic Falls. Add the songs of Mat Kearney, One Republic, The Fray and Sara Bareilles and you get entertaining MTV-quality scenes.

What if vamps really live among us? It is very interesting to watch vampires use mobile phones and enjoy a bit of booze. Aside from that, every episode starts with a narration by Elena as she reads excerpts from her diary. Other characters, like Stefan himself, keep a diary. It just shows how timeless personal chronicles are, even in this age of emails and blogs. Nothing beats a good old leather-bound notebook where you can document daily musings. For me, I guess I’ll just consider this six-year-old blog as my virtual diary.

Now back to watching a few more episodes.

Alien flick strikes again

While on queue for the movie I Am Number Four, the lady in front of me asked the ticket seller “What’s this movie about?” and the employee in the booth answered, “It’s a sci-fi action film.” The movie started at 2:30pm and lo and behold, all the action and sci-fi scenes started an hour later. More than half of the film turned out to be the love story of John Smith (Alex Pettyfer) and Sarah Hart (Dianna Agron). It should’ve been classified under ‘teenybopper action thriller with alien invasion” movie. On the other hand, the experience of watching this Michael Bay movie was generally entertaining.

Drawing inspiration from Pittacus Lore’s six-book series (yes, this is just the first installment), I Am Number Four is about a 15-year old alien who is “Number Four” among the nine human-like Loriens  hunted down by silly-looking Mogadorians;  and these Voldemort look-alikes chasing our hero can instantaneously be exterminated to dust by staking them the way Buffy The Vampire Slayer does. And so the “alien walks among us” theme is perfectly integrated throughout the movie backed up with cool special effects. Honestly, I got surprised and almost jumped off my seat twice because of some startling scenes and sound effects.

Bottomline: are aliens real? This issue surfaces in countless Hollywood films and TV shows that has entertained us for years.

Whether based on truth or make-believe, sci-fi flicks bring me back to my younger years and rekindles my belief that I have undiscovered super powers. 6 ½ out of 10 stars for this movie I watched last weekend.

Wallflower’s Wisdom

An eight-hour zig-zag ride to Isabela gave me the eye-damaging opportunity to finish Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower. This collection of “Dear Diary” entries is perfectly stitched together in a very creative 90’s fashion.

The anthology of daily thoughts is owned by Charlie who confides a bunch of secrets in his diary in a span of one year. Starting off with his high school experience dated August 25, 1991, the epistolary novel revolves around the life of a “loner” who actually isn’t alone after all, thus, giving the perfect identity for someone who is called a ‘wallflower’ – often a shy observer and a good listener, contented of being just in the background of people’s lives.

Charlie would have been the perfect ‘blogger’ of his time and I bet his posts will be read by a multitude of followers. Aside from being very profound in tackling adolescent issues such as independence, sex, love, and even
homosexuality, the diary entries are filled with rich reviews on literary classics, television shows, films, and music during the 90’s.

I can’t help but feel gloomy when I reached the final entry and Charlie had to say goodbye to his so-called ‘friend.’ This 14-year-old boy’s life is so interesting and realistic I felt so engrossed and wondered what happens with those around him – Bill, Mary Elizabeth, Sam, Patrick, and Brad. All characters come alive and have their own fascinating stories told vividly in this book.

Chbosky’s work is very revealing and brave. Four out of five stars for this soon-to-be-movie starring Emma Watson (Hermione of HP) and Logan Lerman (Percy Jackson).

Glued on crime drama

Last weekend, I joined my mom in watching a TV series on Diva Universal entitled “Covert Affairs” and I got hooked on it. Reasons for being glued:

  1. I mistakenly identified Kari Matchett (Joan Campbell) as Lisa Kudrow (Phoebe of Friends). I just miss “Friends” and Kari really looks like Lisa. And so my dad goes – “Yeah, she starred in Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion.” Ok, not really.
  2. Christopher Gorham playing a blind CIA agent is so cool – way cool-er than being Ugly Betty’s love interest.
  3. Peter Gallagher (the dream dad from The O.C.) is playing another “daddy” role and he’s still good at it.
  4. The lead actress, Piper Perabo, is good. You deserve the Golden Globe nomination.
  5. The title of the series itself is interesting.

I am not a fan of crime drama series. The advent of detective-type shows starting off with CSI (LA, Miami, NY), Bones, 24, and a cable channel full of crime/suspense became the platform for the revival of some good American TV stars. As for Covert Affairs, I easily get distracted since almost all of the actors starred in hit shows I previously tuned into. I can still identify them in their former roles. What a mix of talents!

This not-so-popular crime action/drama series aired in the US last year and is expected to launch is next season on May (according to the oh-so-reliable Wikipedia). I just realized I found a substitute for “Friends” and “The O.C.” Plus, I miss watching a TV series such as this. Target: Vampire Diaries marathon.