May 24 2015

Bitten – “Bad Dreams” Retrospective. What Dreams May Come.

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Elena stands her ground

Elena stands her ground

Season 2, Episode 7

Airdate: Friday, May 22, 2015, 11/10c on Syfy

Rating:

The second season of Bitten continues to impress me with its many surprise endings and attention to detail. The werewolf series doesn’t hold back with its weekly gore, sex, and drama. “Bad Dreams” appears to be no exception until the attention switches to the growing relationship between Nick (Steven Lund) and Paige (Tommie Amber Pirie). Amid the chaos and bloodshed left in the wake of Aleister’s (Shawn Rogerson) failed plans, the light hearted moments in “Bad Dreams” are a nice change of pace—even if it is only for a small portion of the episode.

My, What Big…Teeth You Have

The first half of “Bad Dreams” focuses on the Alpha council, which I thought would be the major threat to the Danvers clan; boy, was I wrong. While it’s great to see there are consequences to Malcolm Danvers’ (James McGowan) actions, this chapter needs to be put to rest. There are enough problems going on with the witches and Elena’s (Laura Vandervoort) return to fill the entire season and more. It appears the purpose of the Alpha council is to offer closure to Malcolm’s story and demonstrate his son, Jeremy (Greg Bryk), in his element as Alpha of his pack. We see only mere bits and pieces of Jeremy’s cunning and brute strength; however, in “Bad Dreams,” we witness how he conducts business—sans bloodshed, well, for the most part. We’ve seen Jeremy take care of business when he defends those he loves, and when in the face of danger. This time, we see another facet of his character—the way he conducts himself in a room full of his peers. When he gets into an argument with one of the Alphas trying to boss him around, Jeremy stands his ground in a way that makes me take notice. The firm and loud boom of Jeremy’s voice and the way he circles one of the Alphas is aggressive. It’s an attractive side to him, and Bryk convincingly takes charge of the scene with every icy glare. Without violence, Jeremy reminds me why he’s leader of his pack; he’s smart and meticulous, which is a nice change from the stereotypical brawns over brains depiction werewolves often receive in the fantasy TV genre.

Also, I enjoy seeing a more international community of werewolves; it makes the Bitten world much more interesting with potential for a lot of diverse story lines. I wonder if we’ll see more Alphas represented from other countries this season.

We’ll Always Have Hawkesbury

Happy times for Nick, Paige, and Lily at Hawkesbury

Happy times for Nick, Paige, and Lily in Hawkesbury

Since the day Nick first bantered with Paige, I’ve been rooting for these two to be romantically linked together. It’s a relief to see another side of Nick, one that doesn’t revolve around him being a womanizer. One of the things on my wish list for season two of Bitten is more character development. With only a few more episodes remaining this season, the re-introduction of Nick’s history regarding his mother Lily (Shauna MacDonald) perfectly segues to tie in what Paige is going through with her own complex emotions toward family. We learn more about Lily and while it’s not the usual reunion, the purpose of having her story brought to light at this point in the season seems to be providing closure for Nick. I adore Paige for offering support and encouragement to Nick in helping him connect with his mother. Paige speaks her mind and can be stubborn, but when it comes to family and loyalty, she is unstoppable; whereas, Nick’s presence allows Paige to feel more vulnerable. Paige gives him a strength that balances things out; she is his counterpart as much as Clay (Greyston Holt) is to Elena. There’s even a moment where Clay is oblivious to the growing relationship between Paige and Nick, and Elena gives him a knowing smile. It’s a subtle moment, but one of the reasons I enjoyed this episode.

Smoke and Mirrors

Since Aleister’s abrupt departure, I had doubts life would return to normal for Savannah (Kiara Glasco) or any of the Winterbourne witches. Throughout ”Bad Dreams,” especially when Savannah seeks to warn Elena about her visions, I couldn’t help wondering where Ruth (Tammy Isbell) disappeared to. Someone seriously needs to put some sort of tracking device on her. Still, Savannah’s visions and dreams do suggest that whatever lies in store for the Danvers pack cannot be good. Savannah’s story line doesn’t take up much of the episode, but by the end, it serves a very grim purpose.

Overall

“Bad Dreams” is a memorable episode. Episodic writer Larry Bambrick does a wonderful job of juggling the essential plot points, from Elena’s return to Stonehaven to Jeremy’s growing problems with the ongoing visits from the Alpha council.  Director J.B. Sugar expertly captures all the dramatic moments starting with the opening scene where we get a glimpse of Savannah’s dreams. Sugar and director of photography Boris Mojsovski set up an alarming sequence of scenes that are gruesome. Yet at the same time, the sight of her flowing wardrobe mixed with the dimly lit environment creates a surreal and dark, atmospheric tone.

Overall, considering the ending of “Bad Dreams,” I am happy we get a reprieve from some of the ominous story lines in exchange for something more sentimental. Savannah’s visions, I believe, are just the beginning of a very long and messy road to the season finale.

 

What did you think of “Bad Dreams?” Post your comments below or on Twitter @conallen.

Follow the series on its official site on Syfy, http://www.syfy.com/bitten, where you can also watch videos and clips of the episodes.

Follow Bitten on its official twitter @bittentv, and don’t forget the cast: Laura Vandervoort (@Vandiekins22), Greyston Holt (@greystonh), Greg Bryk (@gregbryk), Paul Greene (@paulgreenemedia), Steve Lund (@leven_stund), Michael Xavier (@michael_profx), Tommie Amber Pirie (@TommieAmber), and Kiara Glasco (@kiaraglasco).

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Photos ©2015 Syfy, a division of NBC Universal, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

© 2015, Connie Allen. All rights reserved.

Connie Allen

I'm a writer, cinephile, avid reader, and pop culture enthusiast. I love historical dramas, and fantasy/sci-fi series. Currently living in SoCal.

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