Discussing Beth as a character

Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Kee » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:23 pm

Emerald wrote:Probably not a huge surprise, but I'm not a fan of Beth. Although not for the reason most people probably think. I don't care that she's 'in the way of my OTP' - as far as I'm concerned Josef/Mick exist in another universe all together. There's just something so...annoying about her. I don't trust her as far as I can throw her (which isn't very far), I don't like how she emotionally played Josh while they were still together, when she clearly had feelings for Mick, I don't like her butter wouldn't melt in my mouth appearance when you can sense she has the knives out for anyone who crosses her. Now some people see that as strength, me, personally, I saw her as a character I just couldn't warm to or trust. Complicated, yes, but far too many times I got the feeling that the complicated side of her was an excuse to get away with stuff most people would have been called on. At least with Coraline you knew what she was up front, you saw her coming, Beth seemed more the sort to wait until your back was turned before plunging the knife in.

I dislike her to the point that I find it hard to rewatch Moonlight episodes in full without just skipping ahead to avoid any scenes with Beth in it. Everytime she appears on screen I want to metaphorically punch her in her smug little face. It's like watching someone trample all over people's hearts and lives and then expect a pat on the back for it.



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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Fleur de Lisa » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:58 pm

Alle and lucky--brilliant, insightful posts. Beth is human, as are we, therefore she is gonna be flawed.
As for her acting childish, we also have to remember that Mick and Josef while young in appearance, were many, many years older. They've seen it and done it all and no matter how mature she may be, she cannot compete with that.

Em-I get where you are coming from bc that is how I feel about Cora's portrayal. Every time I saw her supposed sultriness, I'd scoff at the tv!

I respect your points but disagree with knowing who Cora was up front---Mick sure wouldn't agree with that! And when she pretended to be Morgan and befriended Beth? Cora and Beth both were strong women who did what they could to get what they wanted, that's for sure. And the best part of it was the writers did what they set out to: have people divided over both women. While Mick happily sat back and didn't get nearly the flack he should've for the way he behaved. It always seemed to come down to Cora or Beth not Mick being the impetus for a lot of the issues.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Emerald » Tue Jul 02, 2013 9:59 pm

Kee wrote:
Emerald wrote:Probably not a huge surprise, but I'm not a fan of Beth. Although not for the reason most people probably think. I don't care that she's 'in the way of my OTP' - as far as I'm concerned Josef/Mick exist in another universe all together. There's just something so...annoying about her. I don't trust her as far as I can throw her (which isn't very far), I don't like how she emotionally played Josh while they were still together, when she clearly had feelings for Mick, I don't like her butter wouldn't melt in my mouth appearance when you can sense she has the knives out for anyone who crosses her. Now some people see that as strength, me, personally, I saw her as a character I just couldn't warm to or trust. Complicated, yes, but far too many times I got the feeling that the complicated side of her was an excuse to get away with shit most people would have been called on. At least with Coraline you knew what she was up front, you saw her coming, Beth seemed more the sort to wait until your back was turned before plunging the knife in.

I dislike her to the point that I find it hard to rewatch Moonlight episodes in full without just skipping ahead to avoid any scenes with Beth in it. Everytime she appears on screen I want to metaphorically punch her in her smug little face. It's like watching someone trample all over people's hearts and lives and then expect a pat on the back for it.



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*blushes* Thank you :rose:

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.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Emerald » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:03 pm

Fleur de Lisa wrote:Em-I get where you are coming from bc that is how I feel about Cora's portrayal. Every time I saw her supposed sultriness, I'd scoff at the tv!

I respect your points but disagree with knowing who Cora was up front---Mick sure wouldn't agree with that! And when she pretended to be Morgan and befriended Beth? Cora and Beth both were strong women who did what they could to get what they wanted, that's for sure. And the best part of it was the writers did what they set out to: have people divided over both women. While Mick happily sat back and didn't get nearly the flack he should've for the way he behaved. It always seemed to come down to Cora or Beth not Mick being the impetus for a lot of the issues.


And this is one of the biggest reasons I ship Mick with Josef, as far as I'm concerned neither woman was good enough for him. :laugh:

I wasn't a huge Coraline fan either, but I guess with her I expected the bad side, because I assumed that was the character. That bad side also meant I was able to appreciate the moments when she rose above who she was, like when she gave Mick the cure, and then let Lance take her to wherever to save Mick. That to me meant more than what Beth ever did, in my view Beth kept two men dangling on a string and yet she was supposed to be the one every one loved.

I understand when it comes to my views on Beth there are going to be more than a few instances of agree to disagree. :twothumbs:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:08 pm

And that's what I love about this group--we can respectfully disagree without tearing each other's faces off. :snicker:

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.)
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby librarian_7 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:14 pm

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.


Well, I think you have to cut Beth some slack there. She was so fascinated with Mick, and the whole vampire thing--which, remember was still very new to her!--that she wanted to try the drug to experience life as he did. She wanted to understand what it was all about. And I think the shower scene was very indicative of the powerful effect of BC. She was not acting rationally when she was begging him to turn her. It reminded me of someone doing something stupid while under the influence of alcohol. (I think most of us have been down that road a time or so!). She's not torturing Mick intentionally. She can't think that clearly at the time. Was it cruel to him? Well, yes, of course. Did he rise to the occasion? Yes, but it was a near thing. How many of us, the first time we saw that, were thinking that they were going to end up in bed together? I know that was the speculation, before the episode even aired, because of the promo shot of Beth on the couch in Mick's shirt. It certainly looked very post-coital!

You're right, Em. That scene is heartbreaking, because it's such a test of Mick's restraint and nobility. But it's also very hot. Just the visual of the two of them, clothed, under the shower as she writhes sensuously in his arms...whew.

I do think it's unfair to react to that as if Beth, in cold blood, had gone to Mick's place and tried to seduce him. That's Coraline's game. Beth, under the influence of a drug that was clearly affecting her deeply, went to Mick, because she was attracted to him, and also because he was the one who she was trying to understand. I don't give her a complete pass for her actions, but it's in keeping with her personality, that she would feel compelled to try the BC. Impulsive, yes. That the results got a little out of hand, unfortunate. But her guardian angel kept his wings on that night, and once again, everything turned out okay.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:25 pm

I agree, Lucky. Beth had no idea what Black Crystal was, except what Lola had told her. Yes, she knew it was dangerous, but Beth's a bit of a danger junkie. And in her mind, it was only herself she was endangering. So yeah, she gets a pass from me for the shower.

The next morning? No pass from me. :nonono: She told Mick she had some apologies to make. HELLO, the very first, and most heartfelt apology of all should have been to MICK! :madface: Beth behaved very badly at the end of B.C., and there's no getting around that. But it made me love Mick even more for behaving the way he did. :hearts:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Emerald » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:31 pm

allegrita wrote:And that's what I love about this group--we can respectfully disagree without tearing each other's faces off. :snicker:

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.)


If she's with Josh she should be with Josh, none of this flirting with Mick, kissing him in the parking lot, just happening to keep running into him on cases (okay so maybe that couldn't always be helped, but a lot of the time it didn't seem to me like she was too reluctant to work with Mick, even knowing she had someone at home who loved and cared for her a great deal). Basically stop playing games with people's feelings, like keeping Josh around as the familiar comforter, and dangling Mick on a string as the hot new guy she knows she can't have. One scene, just one, where she sat down with Mick and was honest with him about her feelings, but also her love for Josh, with a line like 'And that's why I can't see you anymore', would have sufficed for me. Just something, anything, to indicate she actually understood she was toying with people's emotions. Of course the show would have kept throwing Mick and Beth into situations together, but at least then you would have had some clear indication of the turmoil she was feeling over Josh. To me it was like Josh basically had to confront her before she even got a clue how deeply she was hurting him when it came to Mick.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:52 pm

I understand where you're coming from, but if Beth couldn't be with Mick, then don't we lose the fundamental premise of the show? :shrug:

Perhaps it would have been better from your POV if Josh hadn't been Beth's boyfriend. Have you seen the pilot presentation? Did you prefer Beth as portrayed there--a bit tougher, more established as a working stringer, and single?
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby librarian_7 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 10:53 pm

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.

She couldn't really sit down with Mick and say, "I can't see you anymore," because at that time, they were NOT dating. They had encountered each other a number of times, but it's not like they were having trysts in some sleazy motel. I think Beth was very conflicted in her feelings. She obviously did have deep feelings for Josh, and who knows, maybe she should have cut him loose sooner, but...really, he died before she could resolve in her mind which man she wanted. And other than one brief kiss in a parking lot (and maybe a hug, but I have to think that hug in SB was more the comforting hug of a friend, than anything romantic), she had not "betrayed" Josh.

I tend to think she was acting as the flawed human being she was--wavering between perfectly nice, reliable Josh, and this mysterious and exciting stranger who was fast becoming a friend, and a possibility. I don't see this as much different than what most people would do.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Emerald » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:33 pm

allegrita wrote:I understand where you're coming from, but if Beth couldn't be with Mick, then don't we lose the fundamental premise of the show? :shrug:

Perhaps it would have been better from your POV if Josh hadn't been Beth's boyfriend. Have you seen the pilot presentation? Did you prefer Beth as portrayed there--a bit tougher, more established as a working stringer, and single?


Hmm, good point, I have to admit I did prefer pilot Beth more than canon show Beth, but that's based on limited info so maybe my feelings would have changed anyway had pilot Beth been the one to stay with the show. Hard to say.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Emerald » Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:53 pm

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.

She couldn't really sit down with Mick and say, "I can't see you anymore," because at that time, they were NOT dating. They had encountered each other a number of times, but it's not like they were having trysts in some sleazy motel. I think Beth was very conflicted in her feelings. She obviously did have deep feelings for Josh, and who knows, maybe she should have cut him loose sooner, but...really, he died before she could resolve in her mind which man she wanted. And other than one brief kiss in a parking lot (and maybe a hug, but I have to think that hug in SB was more the comforting hug of a friend, than anything romantic), she had not "betrayed" Josh.

I tend to think she was acting as the flawed human being she was--wavering between perfectly nice, reliable Josh, and this mysterious and exciting stranger who was fast becoming a friend, and a possibility. I don't see this as much different than what most people would do.


I will freely admit there's probably more than a bit of transference when it comes to me and Beth. I have very clear ideas of what is romantic, and what isn't, what's acceptable and what isn't. I just can't put myself in Beth's shoes, because I couldn't imagine being that person who was torn between two men. When I'm with someone I'm with them, not to the point that I don't notice other people, or even develop silly little crushes every now and then (although that's only because I'm married now and we have a level of trust and non jealousy that allows me to indulge harmless feelings every now and then). If I was to start developing serious feelings for someone besides the man I'm with, I wouldn't be all 'lalalalala' about it, I'd be putting the brakes on, and hitting reverse so fast I'd spin my metaphoric wheels. With Beth I saw her having fun with it, the tall dark stranger, and all the what ifs, and sure that's fine up to a point (says the person who currently has a secret crush on someone besides her husband), but once it crossed a line to where it was obvious those feelings were growing and becoming more real, and Josh was still in the picture - yeah I did struggle with that. Put it this way, if I actually started to feel like I was developing real feelings for my crush, if I felt like it was going beyond just 'Wheeee, OMG she's so cute, innocent crushes for the win!' I would break contact immediately and focus all my energy on the man I'm with. Like I said, I just wanted one scene, a line even, where she acknowledged that she knew she was in a difficult situation and didn't want anyone to be hurt.

I realise all that is a little rambly. I have to admit I'm semi drunk at the moment so I'm finding it a bit hard to articulate what I mean, exactly. :blushing:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby Lilly » Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:00 am

librarian_7 wrote:I tend to think she was acting as the flawed human being she was--wavering between perfectly nice, reliable Josh, and this mysterious and exciting stranger who was fast becoming a friend, and a possibility. I don't see this as much different than what most people would do.

This is an interesting point,Lucky. One question I think we all have to ask ourselves is – at what point did Beth fall in love with Mick? Or, at the very least, become attracted to him as more than a friend? I know there are some people who believe it was love at first sight at the fountain, but personally, I've felt that those feelings came MUCH later.

I think she first thought of Mick as a new PI acquaintance – someone she could probably trust and who would be useful in getting the scoop for her news reports. Then he saved her life. Wow. She really could trust him. That opened the door for a friendship. And then she saved his life and discovered his deepest secret. That tied them together in a way that went far beyond ordinary friendship.

During the third episode, she discovered what it meant to be friends with a vampire and to be part of that inner circle. I believe that any distance that began to develop between Beth and Josh was a result not of any romantic designs she had on Mick, but rather her determination to keep Mick's secret, to protect him (as a friend) and to be worthy of the trust he put in her. She was put in an untenable position of having to lie to her boyfriend to cover for Mick. Naturally, that would put a strain on the relationship even without any attraction coming into play. Of course, Josh would assume that it was an attraction, because what else could it be?

When Beth thought Mick had died in "Fever," I always felt her grief was at the loss of a close friend, someone tied to her in ways that she couldn't understand. But even then, I never thought she had felt the stirrings of romantic love.

Perhaps they would have gone on as friends (even though I do believe that Mick had feelings he was denying himself earlier than Beth did) if Coraline, as Morgan, hadn't inserted herself back into the equation. Was Beth jealous of Mick's interest in Morgan? It sure looked that way. Did she have any right to be? No, of course not. But perhaps, on an unconscious level, Morgan stirred up some uneasy feelings, some long-buried memories in Beth, of something that had hurt her in the past. If her trusted friend was now being drawn to someone who was perceived as a threat, even on an unconscious level, it wasn't necessarily romantic jealousy that she was feeling, but rather a feeling of betrayal that she herself couldn't recognize.

That feeling surfaced later, as Alle said, when Mick was (as the very least) sheltering the "scary lady" who destroyed her childhood. To me, that "How could you?" translated into:

You know what she did to me all those years ago. You know what she wantd to do. You know how it has affected me all these years. So, how could you forgive her? How could you let her in – into your apartment, into your life? What the hell is wrong with you? You're supposed to be my guardian angel!

So when did Beth realize she loved Mick? I can't pinpoint an exact time. It was gradual. It was beginning to come to the surface in "Sleeping Beauty," but she put up a wall. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that I never saw her a playing games because I didn't feel that she had romantic feelings toward Mick for most of the time she was "with" Josh. She was conflicted and pulled into a world that Josh couldn't be part of. In my mind, her only betrayal of Josh was not telling him the truth – and if she did she would have betrayed the entire vampire nation.

:2cents:
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby allegrita » Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:32 am

Lilly wrote:So when did Beth realize she loved Mick? I can't pinpoint an exact time. It was gradual. It was beginning to come to the surface in "Sleeping Beauty," but she put up a wall. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that I never saw her a playing games because I didn't feel that she had romantic feelings toward Mick for most of the time she was "with" Josh. She was conflicted and pulled into a world that Josh couldn't be part of. In my mind, her only betrayal of Josh was not telling him the truth – and if she did she would have betrayed the entire vampire nation.

:2cents:

Hmm... I agree with you that Beth wasn't in love with Mick as early as some people think she was. I think she was attracted to him--or more precisely, that she was DRAWN to him (because of her repressed memories) and mistook that for attraction. But I don't think it was until after 12:04AM, when she realized that Mick was her Guardian Angel, that she began to truly fall in love with him.

Also, Beth's feeding of Mick at the end of Fever added another element to Beth being drawn to Mick, because it made them even more connected than they had been before... which leads me to another thought. One of the things people mention when they accuse Beth of being unfaithful (at least emotionally) to Josh is the parking lot kiss at the end of Arrested Development. I wonder if the blood connection (from when she fed Mick) could have had something to do with that. I believe that Mick was definitely falling for her by this time (although do I think it's very telling that when the teen vamp asked him if he'd ever been in love, it was Coraline he thought of, not Beth). So maybe Mick's emotional attachment to Beth caused a sort of empathy-based emotional response in her, which led her to kiss him. Was it a kind thing to do? No, but it was one of those impulsive things that are part of her nature.


I also wanted to respond to something Emerald said. I think Beth was smack-dab in the middle of "Innocent crushes for the win!" in the early parts of Moonlight. It was only after 12:04AM, as I said, that her feelings began to be more serious. And at that point, when Josh came over and confronted her, she did her PTSD thing and stuffed the problem into a box, because she was in the middle of a vampire thing that she truly could not explain to Josh. But... it wouldn't stay in the box, especially after Beth saw what had happened to Sarah. At that point, I think Beth decided that she was going to give Mick up, and she went back to LA in order to try to make things work with Josh. But although she tried, her feelings for him weren't there anymore. The most emotionally dishonest thing she did in the whole show, in my opinion, was to make love with Josh after he got attacked by the HEM guys. It was guilt sex, pure and simple, and you could tell her heart wasn't in it. Not even the next morning, when she told Josh she loved him (and broke Mick's heart). :hankie:

I've dealt with that particular issue in fic, actually, because it bothered me so much. I think Beth felt very guilty for lying to Josh that night. But in my story, Mick tells her that, as things turned out, it was a kindness. Because Josh died believing that she loved him and that she would say yes when he proposed. Not that that makes what she did right... but it turned out to be a good thing under the circumstances.
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Re: Discussing Beth as a character

Postby darkstarrising » Wed Jul 03, 2013 12:37 am

Wow! Such an interesting discussion, and much of what I feel has already been said.

First, I wholeheartedly agree that the character of Beth fell victim to the behind the scenes drama that wasn't totally apparent at the time. When the series began, there was a vision for the series and each of the characters as crafted by Trevor Munson and David Greenwalt. With their departure and the subsequent frequent change outs in showrunners, that vision started to change, gradually at first, but by the time the writers strike was over, the original vision was gone. What started out being a noir story of an angsty vampire and his quest for redemption had been replaced by something a little more mainstream procedural, albeit with an unusual cast of characters.

With all due respect to Sophia (who did marvelously with the material provided her), her character suffered the most from this upheaval. All of Beth's supporting cast of humans was either killed off (Josh and Maureen) or just vanished (Steve, her camera guy) by the time of 'Fated to Pretend'. As such, Beth lost people she could interact with either in a romantic (Josh), professional (Maureen and Steve) or even playful way. Having her change jobs to the DA's office didn't help as the writers couldn't seem to make up their minds if Talbot was supposed to be friend or foe. In short, Beth was losing her ties to the human community and wasn't really ready for commitment to the vampiric one. She's becoming lost. One of the reasons I dislike 'Sonata' so much is that in this episode, Beth has become whiny and distrustful of Mick to the point where she hurts him in the worst possible way. What they did to her hair and wardrobe didn't help either.

In one of Alex's TV interviews, he indicated that he thought the story line was progressing too rapidly. For Beth to have learned Mick's secret by the end of the second episode was something that surprised and to some degree worried him. What also stuck in my mind from that interview was the surprised expression on his face when the interviewer downplayed that concern indicating that a show like 'Moonlight' could only last about 3 seasons. Where I'm going with this is that the interviewer was likely correct in that the first season should have been more drawn out with respect to the great reveal and the development of a relationship between Mick and Beth. The second would likely have developed that relationship more with there being some trauma at the end of the season to pull the two of them apart. The third season would then have been resolution of the divide and some vampiric version of a 'happily ever after'. Can anyone say 'Grimm'?

Lilly brings up an interesting point about just when Beth's feelings for Mick evolved from appreciating him a cute, never a dull moment kind of guy to close friend to something else. I don't think I can answer that question either, but oddly enough, in Sonata, Mick is the only one to say 'I love you'. Correct me if I'm wrong, but Beth never does say those words and if makes me wonder just where the (remaining) writers were planning on taking her.

Almost posted over you, Alle :hug: I, too, have tried to clarify in my fic (for myself, if no one else) what I thought Beth's relationship with Mick. I believed she loved him, but went back to Josh at the end of Sleeping Beauty because she was afraid of what being in love with a vampire could mean, seeing Sarah neither dead nor alive.
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