Friday, October 18, 2013

Witches of East End Recap - Episode 1



Widely-hyped telenovela La Tempestad turned out to be a bit of bummer. William Levy's pecs can only do so much. That left me without a must-watch show this season. Boo too.

True, I still have Big Bang Theory reruns and a pile of Sarah Richardson design shows in my DVR, but man doth not live of comedy and beautifully upholstered furniture alone. I need drama in my life.

Luckily my TV watching situation has improved greatly thanks to Witches of East End. This show has everything I love: witches, drama, Victorian houses, and pretty furniture. It reminds me of my old favorite, Charmed.

I love it so much, I'm going to try doing recaps. Warning: There will be much drooling over mahogany furniture and flowery wallpaper. So, here it goes, episode 1 recap. 
The opening shot is Romanesque stone mansion at light, creepily lit. The house is impressive. I love this show already.

Wealthy guests arrive for a party. The camera travels through the estate gates to a neighboring park where a woman is drawing runes into the sand. Two middle-aged preppies interrupt her and ask her why she’s not at the engagement party. The woman turns into demonic Julia Ormond. Mayhem ensues. 

Cue credits. There's a dark sky and creepy birds. So far, so good.

Night shot of gorgeous Victorian house. It has a porch, it has stained glass, it has gingerbread trim. I’m love.

Shot of wooden staircase with antique framed photographs hung on the wall. The alabaster pendant looks like something out of the Rejuvenation catalog. It's very pretty.

Freya (played by Jenna Dewan Tatum's boobs) is the girl who’s getting engaged. She’s wearing a bright red evening gown to her engagement party. I’m guessing she's the Jessica Wakefield sister. Ingrid, who I assume is the Elizabeth Wakefield sister, is wearing a modest black lace dress. Elizabeth/Ingrid (played by Rachel Boston) tell Jessica/Freya to hurry or she’ll be late for her engagement party. Freya is nervous because she had a dream where a stranger kissed her. Freya thinks she has psychic powers and Ingrid tells her she’s being an idiot. The real Julia Ormond (her name’s Joanna) shows up to take them to the party.

Meet the witches: Ingrid, Joanna and Freya
They go to the engagement party. Freya’s future in-laws are bitchy and Freya makes her future mother in-law (played by über-bitchy Virginia Madsen) choke with magic. Unfortunately, bitchy mother-in-law doesn’t die. The guy from her dream shows up (played by Daniel diTomasso). He’s wearing a motorcycle jacket which means he’s the bad boy. Freya is shocked and confused.

Joanna chats with Freya’s fiancée, Dash (played by Eric Winter). Dash is the exact opposite of bad boy motorcycle jacket guy. Dash looks like an insurance salesman (although the Lifetime website says that he is a doctor). He tells Joanna that he restored the stone mansion. Apparently, it was a pain. At this point Lifetime interrupts the episode to play a Home Depot commercial. Well played, Lifetime.

Ingrid chats with the local police detective (played by Jason George). Apparently, the mansion housed an old magic coven, which engaged in orgies, rituals and animal sacrifices. Poor Dash, he’s not kidding when he says the restoration was a pain. The detective gets called out to handle a murder. Dum, dum, dum.

Hot bad guy turns out to be Dash’s brother. Freya follows him up the stairs and they make out. Freya doesn't let the grass grow under the feet, does she? A vase of flowers bursts into flame. Subtle.

Ingrid finds an old photograph of two women holding brooms. One of them is wearing a distinctive emerald necklace. The photograph burns in her hands.

We are now in the village, where a black cat is hit by a Mini Cooper. This is soooo wrong. You could’ve used a Honda Civic, Lifetime. The cat turns into a naked Mädchen Amick. The corpse is wearing the emerald necklace.

We turn to the Beauchamp (that’s the family’s name) kitchen. I love this kitchen. It has creamy shaker cabinets, taupe ceramic tile, and an apron farm sink.  It’s perfect. Joanna has a Wolf stove and pricey Mauviel copper pots. They must make really good potions.

Also, the Beauchamps have really nice hair in this scene. Soft, bouncy curls prance all over this kitchen. Lifetime interrupts with a L’Oreal hair color commercial. Very appropriate.

Scene switch to Dash's bedroom, where Dash and Freya are making out. He has chocolate-brown sheets. Ew. The fishscale windows in the room are gorgeous though.

We watch as Joanna steps out of her house and climbs into her brown (double ew) Volvo 240 station wagon. Demonic Joanna climbs up to the porch. She used a skeleton key (literally, there’s a skull on the handle) to enter the house and heads for the dining room.

I will now drool over the dining room.

The dining room is gorgeous. It has stained wood wainscotting, cream wallpaper, and antique furniture (I think those are Hepplewhite chairs). Really ugly paintings hang from the walls.

Demonic Joanna chants in front of a painting featuring a guy stranded in a desert. The guy starts to come out of the painting. I guess the ugly paintings have a purpose. Real Joanna comes back and Demonic Joanna runs out the window.

The corpse with the pretty emerald necklace walks out of the morgue. She steals a lab coat.

We are now in the local library. Ingrid works in the library and she was a Folklore and Mythology major. This is fabulous. I know so many F&M majors who went on to Library Science. I love Ingrid. She has great taste in cardigans, which doesn’t hurt either. This one is black with green detailing on the sleeves.

Ingrid's co-worker can’t afford IVF and wants a fertility spell, but Ingrid is hesitant.

Joanna comes back home. Half-naked corpse-lady is sitting on the porch flaunting her pretty emerald necklace. Apparently, the corpse’s name is Wendy and she’s Joanna’s sister. She says she’s here to save Joanna’s life. Joanna looks skeptical. I don’t blame her. Wendy doesn’t seem to be very good at the staying alive thing. I mean, really, run over by a Mini Cooper? I'm surprised she made it to the twenty-first century.
Aunt Wendy rocks! And so does that fireplace.

The detective brings the runes to Ingrid for identification. Ingrid says that they are all from different cultures. The police officer makes a date with Ingrid and leaves. The Ingrid/Police Detective romance seems to be in the slow lane, the very slow lane. Ingrid turns to her co-worker and agrees to try the fertility spell.

Scene switch to Joanna's dressing/sewing room. Wendy is raiding Joanna’s closet. Wendy has nine lives, that’s her curse. Joana is an art teacher (I guess she's the source of the ugly paintings) and that’s her curse. No, my bad, her curse is immortality. That doesn’t sound too bad. Wait, she watches her daughters die and then gives birth to them again, and again, and again. That does sound bad. Cue epidural joke.

There's a lot of flashbacks in this scene. I like Joanna’s eighties mourning clothes. Nice detail.

I love Joanna’s dressing room. She has a fireplace and a beautiful embossed room divider. The banter between the two sisters is fabulous.

The backstory continues. Ingrid and Freya don’t know they are witches. Joanna hopes that this will keep the girls alive for a bit longer. Wendy is skeptical. I love Wendy.

We go to the local bar where Freya works as a bartender. Hot bad boy (his name’s Killian) walks into her bar. Freya dumps a martini on him. This girl’s such a flirt.

Ingrid and her fellow librarians cast a fertility spell in the library.  They got the spell off the internet and there’s a lot giggles. They are the Beavises and Buttheads of the supernatural.  This poor girl is going to end up with quintuplets.

Joanna and Wendy share goblets of absinthe in the dining room. They use the right spoons (I love the details in this show). We get a clear shot of Joanna’s majolica collection and I die of envy. Die.
Wendy and Joanna deal tarot carts. The readings are not good. They deal again and get the same reading. Third reading, same result. Joanna looks annoyed. 

Dream sequence. Freya has a sexy dream featuring a shirtless Killian. He says he’s waited 400 years for her. Freya wakes up.

Scene switch to Joanna's art studio which seems to be a nook next to the kitchen. The window seat is adorable. Ingrid has a cute teal cardigan. My fondness for her cardigan collection grows. Joanna introduces them to their aunt. Ingrid recognizes Wendy’s necklace and freaks out.

Demonic Joanna goes back to the house and finishes the spell. A sunburnt man falls out of the picture. She tells him that she’ll help him avenge himself on the witch who did this to him. The guy is more interested in the glass of water she’s holding, but he smiles at the thought of revenge.

Killian comes back to the Bent Elbow (that’s the name of Freya’s bar, the logo is a merry mermaid). sunburnt guy is also at the bar.

Ingrid is back at the library. Her co-worker comes back and tells Ingrid that she’s pregnant. Ingrid is skeptical since she got the spell out of a website that misspelled the word “fertility.” Quintuplets, I tell you, this poor girl will end up with quintuplets.

Sunburnt guy attacks Freya in the bar’s restroom. He’s armed with a sickle (crazy sunburnt druid?). However, he doesn’t kill her right away. He gives her a candle and makes her chant a spell that drags them both into a photograph on the bathroom wall. Uh?

Wendy is making a vision stew. But she’s not using the expensive French pots. She’s using an iron cauldron instead. I guess she’s a traditionalist. Demonic Joanna comes in and stabs her in the stomach. Wendy looks surprised and annoyed. I love Wendy so much.

One of the park victims survives. She tells the police that she can identify the attacker. Dum, dum, dum.

Joanna arrives and Wendy apologizes for bleeding all over the tile. Did I mention how much I love Wendy? Wendy had a vision that Freya would be murdered inside a painting. Apparently, if Freya dies in a painting, she doesn’t get to be reborn. Wendy tells Joanna and Ingrid that they have to go and save Freya.

They are interrupted by the police detective who arrives to arrest Joanna for the park murder. He fails to notice the wounded woman slowly bleeding to death in the kitchen. Great job, detective. Anyway, he takes Joanna away. Wendy dies. Ingrid’s the only one who can save Freya now.

Ingrid freaks out.

End of Episode.

I loved this episode and am really looking forward to the next one. If you missed the episode, you can watch in on the official Lifetime website.

All pictures courtesy of Lifetime Television