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If there's one thing that I look forward to on a Thursday it's the fact that I know my boyfriend will be out all night long and I'll have sole control of the television. I actually call it my pamper night as I can come home from work, have a bath, cook my tea (which nearly always takes the form of a takeaway), pour myself a glass of wine (or two) and settle down in front of the television for the night to catch up on all my "American trash" as he likes to call it. The latest programme that I've developed an addiction to is an American series called Revenge which has been running in the UK for just over two months now and is absolutely brilliant in my own humble opinion!
The show centres on a young woman who rents a house in The Hamptons for the summer... and has a very dark secret which was revealed in the first episode. She's only moved there in order to exact revenge on those who destroyed her father when she was younger. The people of The Hamptons framed her father for a crime he didn't commit and sent him to prison for life... so she's taken it upon herself to bring justice to the real culprits of the crime. She quickly becomes embroiled in the gossip and way of life of The Hamptons while she slowly starts to carry out her plans. However certain people soon become suspicious as things start to slowly unravel!
Emily VanCamp (Brothers & Sisters) plays the lead role of Emily Thorne and she's a good mixture of sexy sweet and ice cold to portray her character perfectly. She can turn on the girly charm when she needs to yet also act as a cold blooded killer. Madeleine Stowe (Raines & We Were Soldiers) plays Victoria Grayson who is Emily's arch nemesis, she was one of the people responsible for her father's imprisonment and is queen bee of The Hamptons too. There are other key characters such as Victoria's son who becomes Emily's love interest, her childhood sweetheart who doesn't realise her true identity and various people who are on Emily's "hit list."
Prior to seeing the show I'd seen some adverts for it and had already decided I probably wouldn't like it. The shot of Emily standing in a pile of thorns just looked so staged and almost comical that I thought it wouldn't be any good. I also thought it would be some sort of Gossip Girl remake in the sense that it tries to portray rich Americans behaving badly. How wrong could I be... after just a single episode I was absolutely hooked. It's almost a recipe where each week Emily attempts to cross one person off her Revenge list (my only worry is that this list doesn't seem to quite reach double figures and I'm worried what they'll do when she runs out of targets)!
The first episode started off covered in a sense of mystery... there's a dead body on the beach, there's an engagement party going on, there's lots of hidden stares and a lot of tension. The opening scene made me think I was tuning into some sort of murder mystery (which it may well become yet) with a red and white theme (an odd choice for an engagement party). The whole opening episode reminded me of Pretty Little Liars, but a much more adult version. By the end of the first episode the whole plot line had been revealed and I'd developed a sense of sympathy towards the main character, but I still wasn't exactly rooting for her and I'm still not really.
Since then the show has been screening every Monday night on E4 at 8.00pm and I've either been glued to it or anxiously recording it on Sky ready for my Thursday night! I can honestly say the show has gone from strength to strength as characters have developed, mysteries have been solved and then more created and revenge has finally started to be carried out by Emily. New characters have been introduced, some are friends and some are foes of Emily's, and they're all rather expertly played as well. A second series has already started filming and will be screening soon in America so it's clearly been met by positive criticisms in both America and England to be continuing.
The plot line didn't really appeal to me at first as I thought the show would focus very much on The Hamptons and their lavish way of life. It's got that whole rich people behaving badly slant to it with amazing parties, fantastic outfits and brilliant catfights... but it's also all just plausible enough that you can believe them. I think it's just all more appealing when they're better dressed and drinking champagne! The fact that all the people on Emily's hit list are filthy rich makes it even more enjoyable, she's an avenging angel going for all the slimy rich people! The show is all surprisingly believable at the same time and the idea behind it all is thankfully refreshing.
The star of the show is Madeleine Stowe who is brilliantly icy while remaining classy and strong at the same time. The scenes between her and Emily are fantastic where they are obviously sizing each other up but both pretending to be sickly sweet at the same time. The only actress I'm not overly taken on is Emily VanCamp herself, there's something that I just don't like about her! She is superb in the role and the supporting characters really work well with her as well. Each show lasts for about forty five minutes by the time you take out the three intervals and series one is currently screening on a Monday night in the UK with series two planned for the USA.
What seemed like a rather pretentious drama is now the show that I look forward to catching up with the most on a Thursday night (if I can resist watching it on a Monday night)! There are so many mysteries still waiting to be unravelled and so many things that could go wrong it's like one massive cliff hanger. Each week I think Emily will be caught or she'll find her last victim but the show just keeps on going and getting better every week. I would definitely recommend this series; if you've not seen it then I would suggest catching up with it online so you understand the full background to her situation. I'd sum this programme up as both clever and intriguing!
Thanks for reading!