Tonight the fifth network presents a too-obviously-themed two-hour block of otherworldliness with the return of Supernatural and the unveiling of The Vampire Diaries. Finding myself at a crossroads – one being the road I’ve been traveling down, with a pre-disposition to avoid most things on The CW; the other being one that leads me towards a natural attraction to stories involving spooks, spectres and all things supernatural, particularly ones having the creative talent with a resume that includes working alongside Joss Whedon – this one-two punch seems tailor-made for me to enjoy. Unfortunately I’m at a loss in my commitment to either offering served up for my viewing pleasure, especially on Thursdays, a night that already has a number of contenders vying for coveted DVR space.
The Vampire Diaries will grace the small screen for the first time with the hopes to lure those who can’t get enough of glamourous, gorgeous creatures of the night…or rather the not-direct-sunlight. Taking a cue from the popularity in adapting young adult novels featuring beautiful, blood-sucking fiends, Vampire Diaries is based on a series of books first published in the early-’90s. The premise (small-town girl in a love triangle with two brothers) reads very similar to any number of teen dramas so it’s fitting that Dawson’s Creek creator Kevin Williamson is at the helm of this sexy sudser. Being a Creek geek back in the day (although my attention waned in the latter part of the series) I enjoy the idea of Dawson with fangs, but also having a high bar set from other well-played, vampire-centric TV I’ll need more than just a little sexual tension (which I’ll consider chaste in comparison to anything-goes-on-HBO True Blood) and teen angst to retain my viewership.
With Supernatural, I’ve already got a big handicap to overcome: not having kept up with the previous four seasons worth of exploits from the (hot!) demon- and all-other-manner-of-evil-hunting Winchester brothers. Not wanting to completely discard a show that sees frequent episodes written by the amazing Ben Edlund (he behind one of the single best hours of television ever with Angel‘s fifth season puppet-filled masterpiece “Smile Time”), all seasons are sitting at a comfortable place on the queue, but after reading the synopsis for the latest season’s opener, “Sympathy for the Devil,” intrigue might get the better of me and they’ll quickly be moved to the top. While the first couple of years concentrated more on monster-of-the-week stories, a canny creative took the reins mid-way through and started to really develop a strong mythology, which any genre aficionado will attest is the backbone of these types of series.
SET YOUR DVRs
- 8/7c – The Vampire Diaries, The CW (series premiere)
- 9/8c – Supernatural, The CW