Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Series Premiere Review: Moonlight

Moonlight [s1 ep01]: "No Such Things As Vampires"

*** Spoiler Warning ***

Key Plot Points of Season Premiere

  • The episode begins with a dream sequence in which L.A. private investigator Mick St. John is being interviewed about what it's like to be a vampire. He gives us all the rules about what's true and what's not... Vampires do have to drink blood, but Mick "has a guy" (access to a dealer) so that he doesn't have to bite anyone to suck their blood--unless they really deserve it. He sleeps in a freezer instead of a coffin. Vampires are not harmed by garlic, holy water, or crucifixes. Vampires cannot turn into bats. Vampires do not burst into flames from sunlight, but the longer they're in the sun, the worse they feel. Vampires can only be killed by being burned or beheaded, not by stakes to the heart.

  • Mick is only about 90 years old. His best "friend" is Joseph, "one of the oldest vampires in L.A. Four-hundred, going on 30." Joseph lives a rich lifestyle thanks to investments. His house is full of women, and it appears at least one (if not some or all of them) is willing to let him feed off her blood in exchange for sharing his rich lifestyle.

  • Guillermo is a vampire who works at the morgue (with convenient access to un-needed blood). He supplies Mick with investigative information and blood. He can't understand why Mick likes A-positive blood so much when the O-positive blood "has got much better finish."

  • Mick is alarmed when Beth Turner, an internet reporter for Buzzwire, covers a story about the murder of a girl by two puncture wounds to the neck.

  • Mick and Beth both investigate this and other similar murders. Mick sneaks into places and intimidates. Beth goes undercover. The primary suspect is a college professor of ancient mythologies who appears to be leading a vampire cult. The professor is not a true vampire but uses his own take on vampire legend as a personal philosophy--and as a way of getting women.

  • By the end of the episode, it's revealed that the professor's T.A. (teaching assistant) is the murderer.

  • We also learn that Beth was abducted as a child by a female vampire named Coraline who was Mick's wife and was the one that sired him (made him a vampire). Mick killed Coraline to save Beth, and he's been trying to protect her from a distance ever since.

Opinions and Observations

  • I forgot to mention this in my Journeyman review, but Beth Turner in Moonlight and Dan Vasser in Journeyman both use iPhones. Wow, the iPhone hasn't even been out that long, and it's already in wide use in at least two new fall shows. Cool.

  • I like the main character, Mick St. John. There's nothing too deep about him yet, but I think there's potential for him becoming more interesting.

  • Comparisons between this show and Angel, another show about a vampire P.I., are inevitable, especially since both shows share a common writer/producer. However, this show definitely has a different tone and feel to it, as well as different vampire "rules." I think this show could and should be judged on its own individual merits.

Hopes, Concerns, or Expectations for New Season

  • Mick's voiceover seems a little forced, like the writer is trying too hard to explain things about vampires and Mick's life. I like voiceovers sometimes, so if it remains an element of the show, I hope the voiceovers become more witty, introspective, and/or informative.

  • From the previews, it appears that Mick and Beth may develop a romance. If so, I hope it develops slowly and that form a genuine friendship first before taking it to the next level. I wouldn't want it to feel forced, especially since the concept of Mick saving Beth as a child makes him seem like more of a father figure initially.

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