The Secret Circle Review: One Shady Sibling

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The death of Nick Armstrong grew even sadder this week on The Secret Circle. Because I felt bad for various characters, most notably Melissa? Eh, sure.

Mostly, though because it led to a rather gloomy, dare I say it, boring hour of television. Granted, "Wake" was faced with the challenging task of following a pair of outstanding, shocking, suspenseful episodes, but that doesn't change the irony of the episode title: I found it hard to stay awake.

Jake and Cassie

I hate to pick on a young actor, but Chris Zylka did very little for me as Jake. The character isn't exactly oozing charisma, is he? He's stiff, he lacks a personality and yet he was the major focus of this episode.

Fortunately, the final scene teased an intriguing set-up for Jake's presence. I'm less surprised and fascinated by the fact that Jake is a witch hunter - did anyone really trust this guy at any point? - than I am by the fact that there are witch hunters in general out there. This clearly raises the stakes, along with numerous questions. The most pressing:

Is this the outside danger to which Dawn and Charles constantly refer? Are these people the reason they want to regain their powers? Are they responsible for the events from 16 years ago and whatever the heck Blackwell is? Or whoever the heck Blackwell is? Ethan wasn't entirely clear on that one.

Can we pour the guy some more drinks and really get him talking?

Outside of a look into Faye's troubled history, a lot of crying by Melissa and Charles moping around over his murderous actions (Dawn clearly wears the cold-hearted pants in this relationship, loved when she squeezed his face), two other developments stood out this week:

Cassie has a crystal. This can be tied in to the fact that the Blakes are apparently one of the original witch families, which forced grandma to give granddaugher the Peter Parker speech: with great power comes great responsibility. Step up, Cassie. You need to be a leader. That's a lot to dump on a 16-year old, but remember how we first met Cassie: changing her own tire, laughing off her mom's offer to help.

This is one independent, strong witch. I say she's up to the task.

Diana no longer has Adam. I wonder what she'll do with all that leftover whipped cream now. Can't say I was shocked by this split, but I was happy to see the truth just laid out there. Ethan told Diana the truth (or his version of it, at least), Diana relayed that to Adam and then even to Cassie. There's no lying here, no backstabbing, just one honest conversation after another. That's not exactly the norm on teen-based primetime soap operas. I like it.

I'm also curious about Ethan's running theme: don't mess with destiny.

So, am I being too harsh on Jake? What are your feelings on the older Armstrong brother? Are you on Team Cadam now, anxious for them to officially get together? And, seriously, can we come up with a better nickname for this potential couple?


Editor Rating: 3.0 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (145 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.


I'm just curious if anyone besides me hate the theme to the show "Da Da Da". Maybe its just me but it annoys me.


Just me or was the wake extra cheerful? i mean, the brother didn't look to beat up about it. The guy either had no friends beside melissa or the real friends didn't get invited to the party


What is Allison's father from TEEN WOLF doing hunting witch on THE SECRET CIRCLE? Weird...


Jake is hot :D .. im interested on this character and Adam next to him is like whatever who are you? Cassie is developing which i like and i stopped being annoyed with her. Melissa is such a cutie, i feel bad for her. Also i feel bad for Diana. I just want Diana to be happy :(


I want melissa and feya to get together that would be hot.


Matt, I couldn't agree more with absolutely everything you stated above.
Even down to loving Dawn grabbing Charles face. I miss Nick. I miss Louis Hunter (who is incredibly good looking but such a dynamic actor as well) I think Andrew Miller and team made a HUGE mistake killing off Nick and bringing in Jake. I can't wait until they realize this gross error and BRING NICK BACK!


I think that diana is far to good for adam anyway she deserves someone who just want to be with her and not be a jealous boyfriend to someone (cassie) who's not even his girlfriend plus I always thought that diana was way too hot for him anyway.


What we saw so far from Jake was fairly wooden but superficially I already like Jake more than Nick. Cake is better than Cadam. Faye wanted revenge on Jake but hid from him most of the time and got high on witch drugs! Faye/Melissa scene where Melissa berates Faye for being sorry for herself rather than mourning Nick was good. Faye was enjoying Nick's special blend though. Gale Harold was good as a guilt-laden Charles. Ethan was a real bastard to Diana. I find it unrealistic for Diana to go to Cassie right after breaking up with Adam. So witch hunters and blood magic, and Cassie has a crystal! Good on Cassie not to tell Jake. He suspects she does though. Jake will have divided loyalties. Looking up!


I don't think Jake is nearly as cute as Nick, and they need to have him be shirtless a lot more to make up for it. I don't get "independent, strong woman" from Cassie. Maybe the character is supposed to be independent and strong, and the actress just doesn't play it, or maybe she's independent and strong but still in morning for her mom, it's only been a few months after all. All I get from Cassie right now is insipid and mopey. She's the least interesting character on the show to me. I wanted Diana to break up with Adam, but in her own time. I felt bad for her, she seemed so heartbroken when DrunkDad gave her his soul mate speech, though I did appreciate the uncommon honesty of her dealing with it. Still, it didn't make much sense to me that she turned to Cassie for a shoulder to cry on. Even the sweetest, nicest person might feel some resentment for Cassie in that situation (and we know Diana is capable of jealousy, which I'd thought we'd get more of before they broke up), and it would have made more sense to me if she had turned to Faye or Melissa or her father. Gale Harold played Charles beautifully as a guy who is barely coping with guilt, so he isn't the cold blooded killer he seemed in the pilot when he killed Cassie's mom. Did he have a reason to hate her, that he killed her without remorse? Was she responsible for the fire that killed the other parents? Or was his killer instinct just dulled by the fact that it might have been Diana who the demon possessed and who had to be killed? I want to see more of him. This episode was slower, but after last week almost anything would have felt slower. Still a great show.


I don't like Chris Zylka, I didn't find him attractive or cute and he was very annoying. He only has a sexy voice but I don't like him neither his character. We discover way too quickly that he's still a bad guy (people can change after all) and all this reasons make me want him to leave the show. Even if I'm team Cadam, the talk between Diana and Ethan made me uncomfortable. Sometimes Diana appears like the perfect, beautiful, smart, annoying girl but sometimes she just doesn't deserve thing. I would love a talk with Cassie about the break-up. The end happens too fast. It's honest, it's the true the Adam/Cassie thing but it was sad because for one time she didn'put herself forward and she goes through a tough time during the whole episode because of Adam. The only interest of this episode was the break-up (Sorry for Nick, Melissa and Faye)

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