The Secret Circle: Magical, Mysterious, but Muddy

THE SECRET CIRCLE: 1.01 “Pilot”

One of my more anticipated series premiered last night, and (no surprise) I’m here to write about it. I’ll try to keep my book-related comments to a minimum (there was already a lot said here) and just discuss what we saw in the series tonight. Well, with one slight exception.

Washington? Why Washington?! Why not New England? You know, the home of the famous Salem witch trials, which is part of the backstory for the books. In the books, the witches from Salem moved to New Salem to flee the trials. It made sense. But Washington? What’s there, other than Twilight? It just felt forced and too much like everything out there, which is exactly what I don’t want for this series.

I enjoyed Cassie in this episode, but I wonder if it just ultimately went too fast. I mean, where was the build up? Opened curtains, a car on fire, and scattered lights on the ceiling, and suddenly she realized something was up? I would have much rather this had been drawn out — if she found out what she was at the end of the episode or at least ended up in the cabin surrounded by everyone and feeling threatened. More of a cliffhanger end.

Instead, she found out pretty quickly (probably because we already knew), and suddenly she’s in a weird love triangle with Adam and Diana, when we haven’t even gotten a chance to build up the characters. We established the background of the circle — and I’m very happy about that — but nothing much about the characters as a whole. What’s appealing about Adam? Nothing that I see yet, so I find it weird to already have sexual tension. Couldn’t that have been put off by an episode?

And Faye. Oh, god, Faye! You’d think with Diana’s dad running around, Phoebe Tonkin could see what a real threatening character looks like. Instead, we got a half grin and eye rolls, which is pretty much as threatening as high school stage acting (don’t be too offended; I actually tried acting in high school, so I know from experience that generally, it’s not that great). She’s incredibly flat, and I just hoped for more. But then again, I expected that already.

But the show is what it is. It’s wrapped in mystery with cool kids that have awesome power. It’s pretty much what everyone wants to be when they’re in high school. And the fact that they have to hide it and Cassie doesn’t want to be a part of it (which I respected, when she said it) adds a level of complication I really didn’t expect for the first episode. So I am looking forward to seeing more.

And why did her mom have to die? I guess we don’t know that quite yet either.

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