Discussing Beth as a character

Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:54 am

I'm definitely not a proponent of anyone stepping out on their significant others, but I do not think Beth intended to do this to Josh at all. I don't think she was playing with Mick's feelings either. I think she did what happens in real life: was in a comfortable relationship, giving not much thought to how or if or when it was progressing, and then this guy comes into her life. A guy unlike any other and let's face it, he was set up to be her soul mate--the entire premise of the show revolves around Beth being kidnapped as a child and Mick saving her. Then meeting and falling in love with him later. That was never in doubt. The only doubt I had was: will she be turned? Stay human? Never doubted that her and Mick were meant to be together bc that was the entire point of the show.

How many of us---raise your hands, ladies--have met your Mr Right whie you were still with someone else? Doesn't mean that you act on it, do anything inappropriate, it's just that a lot of people find others while they are still dating someone. That's normal. Sometimes we stay in nice, comfy relationships until that one person walks into our lives and we say: Wow. That's what I've been missing.

I raised my hand, by the way.

Her seducing him while on the effect of a drug said this to me: she didn't go to Josh. Why? Because the drug made her braver and face her inner feelings. Mick was her first thought--probably not just because she was attracted to him, but would Josh have understood her "researching" BC? Heck no! Mick got it, they were working on the case together, end of story.

And that shower scene was hot. Made all the hotter by him holding back. You saw how he wanted her, saw that she wanted him, but he knew she wasn't in her right mind. Which takes me full circle back to her not intentionally setting out to seduce him.

I like Beth because I felt that Beth represented me and every other woman who watched Moonlight and wished they could be that girl with that sexy vamp.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby darkstarrising » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:01 am

Which goes back to your earlier point about her being human.

Which begs the question that Lola raised about Beth perhaps wanting to feel and experience how the other half lived....I think Beth would eventually understood that the only way she was going to be with Mick is if she was turned. Who would do the honors? :shrug:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:02 am

God, I always hoped it would be Mick that turned her. I think that could have been a truly seductive scene. :melts:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby darkstarrising » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:10 am

Fleur de Lisa wrote:God, I always hoped it would be Mick that turned her. I think that could have been a truly seductive scene. :melts:


ITA :yes: I've only had him turn her about four times, although one of those was a fantasy turning. :biggrin:

The question of her turning could have been the wedge that drives them apart, had there been a second season.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Kee » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:33 am

Emerald wrote:The scene that really got me was when Beth and Mick were in the shower and Beth is begging Mick to turn her. I know she was under the influence of black crystal, but it's like all she thought about was herself, how she would feel if she took the drug, what it was like to be able to turn into a Vampire for one night and then turn back, knowing how Mick felt about his own vampirism, knowing how trapped he felt by it. And then to have her offering herself up to him like that, the one thing he wants but knows he can't have, and she's just begging him 'turn me', like it's no big deal and she's not mentally torturing a man she's supposed to care about in that very moment. A lot of people find that scene hot, I found it heartbreaking for Mick.


I agree. She was so selfish there that she could have given Veruca Salt from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory a few lessons.


allegrita wrote:Okay, I've got a question for those who don't like Beth... in your mind, what would make her a better foil for Mick on the show? (Assuming the same history--kidnapped as a child, etc.)


I honestly don't know. But Beth, I don't know...I just can't watch her anymore.

librarian_7 wrote:I kind of dislike seeing Beth's attraction to Mick being labeled as "playing games with people's feelings." I suspect that she and Josh had some long talks...by the time of 12:04, he was sort of absent, and she mentioned they were having some issues.


But that's what I think she was doing. I think she was stringing Josh along while at the same time keeping one eye on Mick and her boyfriend knew she was distracted but she acted like she wasn't.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Wed Jul 03, 2013 1:59 am

The fun of discussions like this is that we all get a chance to see something familiar from someone else's POV. That doesn't mean we're going to change our minds. But Fleur brought up something quite a ways back (in relation to Coraline), and I think it's worth thinking about.

Sometimes, you just don't like somebody. It doesn't matter whether your reasons are rooted in a detailed analysis or whether it's some sort of gut reaction. Maybe they remind you of someone you can't stand. Maybe their actions remind you of something that hurt you when you were young. Or maybe they just rub you the wrong way. If you dislike a character for reasons like that, you will not change your mind based on logical arguments, because it's not a feeling based in rationality. That's perfectly okay, and nobody expects everyone to agree (on anything!). :snicker:

But remember--when you dislike somebody (real or not) intensely that way, you are likely to interpret everything they do in the worst possible light. Behavior that you'd find acceptable in someone else, is despicable in this person. Once again, that's perfectly okay--everyone has a right to feel the way they feel. But don't expect people who don't have that intensity of dislike to agree with you.

And it goes for the other way, too. I know I tend to give Beth the benefit of the doubt, because I feel a bond with her. If I didn't, I might be a lot harder on her. I don't think she's perfect, but I sympathize with her and I understand why a person might act the way she does, even when her actions aren't admirable. Am I wrong? Nope. No more than you are.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Wed Jul 03, 2013 2:33 am

:yes: Totally agree.

While I liked Beth's character, as I've stated before, I can understand/see where others might find her annoying. However, I don't see her intentionally playing Josh for a fool. She wasn't crafted that way by the writers. That wasn't her role on the show, so while I will abide by other negative comments about her being selfish at times, not "getting" the whole vampire thing, her choice of fashions :giggle: I don't see the whole "she's a woman on a mission to destroy Josh and Mick" or that she is so purposefully stringing along and manipulating either of these men. Did she make some bad choices? Certainly--and that's where I identify with her once again. If they had portrayed her as some blond haired, blue eyed, perfect, never-said-a-bad-word-about-anybody type of gal, I wouldn't have liked her nearly as much and probably would've thrown up in my mouth a little!

She was a product of her past--survived trauma at a young age, subjected to otherworldly creatures as a young adult--just as Coraline was a product of hers. And Mick and Josef of theirs. That's life.

Like lucky stated earlier---at first, how was Josef represented? Hedonistic, materialistic, egotistic, and a whole bunch of other words ending in "tic". Then we had the episode about Sarah. Then we had the episode where he re-turned Mick. 2 very heavy, powerful moments where we got to see beyond the veneer. Heck, we got to see some of Cora's past. And we saw alot of Mick's. But aside from Beth's childhood abduction, what did we see of her past? Parents, siblings, college friends, past boyfriends? We saw her at work and having people over for chicken dinner with Josh! And if that truly was all her life had in it, then extra kudos for her for going after the gorgeous vamp! We didn't get to see a whole lot of depth regarding her life and I would've hoped that season 2 would've shown more of her past. Then again, the vamps are the most exciting ones, so I get why their past lives were more of a focal point.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Lilly » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:10 am

I've been thinking about Beth's childhood and something just occurred to me.

I think most of us agree that she could be rather self-centered and often oblivious to others' feelings. Particularly Mick's. The more I think about her life after the kidnapping, the more I think I understand this. In my mind, after she was returned to her mother, the world would have revolved around her. Mrs. Turner would have have doted on her and done everything in her power to make her daughter feel safe and happy. She would have sacrificed and hidden her own negative emotions and done whatever was necessary to that end.

I wonder if Beth ever had to deal with others' feelings growing up -- or did everyone spare the poor traumatized child? If she was handled with "kid gloves" during her formative years and she compartmentalized her trauma and her fears, then how adept would she be as an adult at empathizing with others feelings? She did seem to be able to do that with Audrey, who was a kindred spirit of sorts, but when it came to being blunt or making insensitive comments to others, she often seemed clueless. Perhaps she was never reprimanded or corrected growing up. :shrug:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:16 am

Wow, excellent analysis, Lilly. :notworthy: I'd never thought of that, but it sure rings true.

On the flip side, I also think that may be why she's so attracted to danger. She survived something horrible once, so she may feel a bit invincible.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:18 am

Both great points. I think it's very likely that she was treated as very special, considering her background. And since it seems that Beth's father was absent, her mom might have been even more likely to protect her. :yes: And I think her feeling of safety (due to Mick) all the time she grew up likely made her a bit insensitive to danger, as well.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby nutmegger911 » Wed Jul 03, 2013 4:53 pm

Beth, Beth, Beth… She’s human, what can I say? I think many people’s dislike of Beth was borne of frustration with her reckless behavior and her wavering back and forth between Josh and Mick. But when you look at her back story, it seems she was raised to behave this way; not intentionally, of course, but that it was the unintended consequences of her upbringing, nonetheless.

Disclaimer: I’ll cut her some slack in her early adult life to figure it out, but at some point she has to get over her “nurture” and decide her “nature,” or at least how she chooses to behave as an adult.

Lilly made a very good point. What mother wouldn’t go overboard, given a second chance after the kidnapping of their child? Such a traumatic event is like a large rock thrown into a pond. There’s the initial splash, but then there are also the ripples to contend with – and the larger the rock, the more dramatic the ripples.

So you’ve got this little girl who was kidnapped by a big scary lady. Then a big strong man comes in, who turns out to be scarier than the lady, viciously fights her and then sets her on fire. There are some things no person should see, a live burning of another person is pretty near the top of the list. Then everyone tells her to try not to think about it. They’re just trying to soothe the child from her nightmares so she can sleep. The unintended consequence is that the girl develops a coping mechanism – compartmentalize and barricade the closet door.

Her family spends the rest of her childhood doing everything humanly possible to make her feel safe. Her guardian angel intervenes to keep her safe when her behavior doesn’t warrant it. Reckless behavior is the unintended consequence here.

As hard as he tries, the guardian angel is unable to remain entirely invisible. The best he can do is to maintain his status as a shadowy figure at the periphery of her world. Unintended consequence, a nagging unsettling presence at the edge of her conscience. Follow on to that is the necessity to reinforce the barricades around the door of that mental closet.

Did you ever notice something about barricades? The stronger the threat, the stronger the barricade. When you keep reinforcing the barricade, the threat seems more and more imminent and dangerous in your mind.

So one day reckless girl meets tall dark and handsome guy in a parking lot the size of Rhode Island. As it turns out, he’s understanding (asked her out instead of turning her in) and sensitive (he cooks!). What’s not to like? Also, he’s safe – a very stable guy, indeed. Exactly what a scared little girl needs.

About a year later, reckless girl gets into really bad jam and guardian angel saves the day, making it clear that he has the chops to actually save her butt when things go south. This is a very attractive trait. Of course, next week she finds out that guardian angel comes with his own scary package. This is cause for both intrigue (reckless) and trepidation (need to be safe).

Beth wasn’t toying with Josh’s affections. Nor was she toying with Mick, IMHO. She loved them both. And before you all start, yes it is possible to feel love for many people. You love them. That doesn’t mean you’re gonna hop in the sack with them. The question is to whom do you give your heart? That’s a tough question for a reckless, scared little girl – one that takes some time to figure out. Mick saved Beth, but she knows what he’s capable of. He could destroy her. After all, she had watched him light a woman on fire. Josh wasn’t a monster. He would never light a girl on fire. That’s important to a scared little girl who knows that guardian angels can and do do stuff like that.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby umbra amoris » Wed Jul 03, 2013 6:49 pm

Wow, I never realized there was so much anti-Beth feeling among fans. I mean, if Mick loved her, how can she be less than perfect?

But after reading all these posts, I have some random thoughts.

First, Josh is who Beth "ought" to be with, and Mick is who she "wants" to be with. Beth is struggling with the choice between vegetables or dessert.

Second, I think writers take liberally from personal experience (theirs and others). So each of the inconsistent Beth actions are things I've seen real humans do, so they seem very real. The problem, I think, is that the show had no firm direction. There was no Joss Whedon there behind the scenes making sure the characters remained consistent. (And even Joss had trouble on Firefly with "you promised us an action show and this is just people talking to each other".) With no consistent leader and the people paying the bills "helping" set the direction and tone, you get serious continuity issues.

Third. All this stuff about Beth being untrue to Josh. That's not even close to what I've seen in real life. What I've seen is the tendency of _some_ females to hold on to one man who is steady and reliable, all the while taking little "vacations" on the wild side. I've seen this play out along a whole spectrum of behavior; from "better to be unhappy than single", to "it's not serious and I'm still committed to him". In Beth's case, I think it's more what I wrote above: her head tells her to go with Josh while her heart wants Mick. I believe the heart always wins, although it tends to do great damage when the head resists.

Fourth. Mick still loves Coraline. He has cut her off because of what she did. She crossed a line that he feels is absolute. But he married her for a reason; we've seen that Mick never took love lightly. So deep down he _wants_ her to be rehabilitated, and he's willing to takes risks to help her. His history will never let him reconcile with her, but she's the ex that he feels a duty towards. This is a nuance of emotion that is much easier to feel than to explain to your soul mate.

Fifth: I think the writers would be best pleased to see the strength of the reactions. I doubt they'd much care whether those reactions were love or hate; they would feel a sense of accomplishment that their words could move your hearts.

I will say that I'm going to have to rewatch the episodes (oh, darn!) with all the comments in mind. Perhaps it'll add even more layers to the show to see some of these things with new eyes.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby nutmegger911 » Wed Jul 03, 2013 7:42 pm

Interesting point, Umbra, about how writers taking from their own personal experiences could affect a character's portrayal. Personally, I really like Beth's character. She's got spunk.

Coraline, on the other hand, was REALLY annoying with her simpering, manipulative ways. KA - RAZY! I didn't trust a word out of her mouth. But that's another thread.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Wed Jul 03, 2013 7:54 pm

NM-- :clapping: :clapping: Brava, hallelujah and whatever else applies--- to that awesome post you made. Every word is amazing and true. A great analysis of what made Beth, Beth.

And umbra--
First, Josh is who Beth "ought" to be with, and Mick is who she "wants" to be with. Beth is struggling with the choice between vegetables or dessert.


Love. This. Truly, madly and deeply. Simply sums it up.

Such smart folks we have here. :hearts:
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