Sunday, October 20, 2013

Best Performances of the Week: American Horror Story: Coven's Lily Rabe and The Vampire Diaries' Matt Donovan

Welcome to the fifth edition of Best Male and Female Performances of the Week. This is a weekly update that will occur, for the most part, on Thursday’s – or shortly thereafter – once I’ve finished watching and reviewing the past week’s worth of episodes, where I will single out one male and one female performance that I believe merits special attention for the week. This, like my reviews, will be based solely on my opinion of the shows I watch in a week, and if you don’t like who I’ve picked, well that’s your problem, isn’t it?
This week my choices came out of a pot of nineteen series’ (and if you don’t know which, go check out my reviews from the last week). For any not caught up in American Horror Story: Coven and The Vampire Diaries, please feel free to exit promptly from this blog. I am not a spoiler free source for shows. THIS BLOG MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! Proceed at your own discretion.

Best Female Performance of the Week:

Lily Rabe as Misty Day in this week’s second episode of the third season of American Horror Story: Coven. While there were a few other notable female performances this week, Lily Rabe ultimately won the coveted spot for me. Even though this season of the series is not living up to my expectations, or anywhere near as good as the first season, this woman’s performance of her character was a step above all of the other actors on this series, including the wonderful Jessica Lange.
Rabe’s portrayal this week as the witch Misty Day was mesmerizing. As I said in my review of the episode, I was absolutely enamored with the character as she sung along to Stevie Nixx. The way she was able to so completely capture the vulnerability of her character, desperate to have someone like herself around, to be accepted, it was just beautiful. She stole the show, merely gracing us with her presence because she sees fit.
Having watched Lily Rabe jump from season to season, role to role, she is an amazing actress. She has been able to play gold-digging 1920’s housewife, Satan possessed nun, and now a vulnerable lover of life witch. While I cannot recall having ever seen her elsewhere from this show, she is the daughter of Jill Clayburgh, so talent must run in her veins. Just from evidence of this series, she deserves a long, fulfilling career, and I’m excited to see more of her in the future.

Best Male Performance of the Week:

Zach Roerig as Matt Donovan in this week’s third episode of the fifth season of The Vampire Diaries. While this seemed to have been a slow week for astounding male performances, Zach Roerig was able to shine through. This series may have grown tiresome and repetitive, but there are some things that keep me watching, and Roerig’s performance this week was one of them.
Some may question why I picked Roerig for Best Male Performance this week, and I can point you to one exact moment in this episode to dispute your confusion. A traveller, otherwise known as a gypsy, is thrust into Matt’s mind – I suppose – and for a time takes over his body. Roerig’s portrayal of Gregor in Matt’s body was so convincing it sounded like it was almost dubbed over his own voice. The anger he was able to expel in that moment was gripping.
I have yet to see this young actor – okay, he’s seven years older than I am, he’s still young – outside of this series, I do think he has the possibility for great talent. The writing is not always there in The Vampire Diaries, but he does seem to be able to make the best of what he’s given. I’ll definitely feel the need to check out a role or two outside of the character of Matt Donovan to see how well this man can act.

This lateness thing seems to be a bit of a habit when it comes to this post. So, I apologize for not having this out two days ago, but I really needed yesterday as a break. I’m going to off and watch Haven now, and hopefully have that review up in about an hour, hour and a half. Stay tuned.

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