The Secret Circle Review: A Blackwell Revealed

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"Crystal" delivered another stunning blow to the viewer rumor mill by turning the argument as to whether Faye or Melissa was John Blackwell's missing daughter on its head.

Well done, The Secret Circle! Before we get to the big reveal, let's chat about the rest of the episode, because much like its sister show, The Vampire Diaries, pulling punches isn't in the game plan.

Diana and Grant

Welcome Grandpa Royce
John DeLancie finally joined the cast as Jake's grandfather and in one five-minute speech we learned more about the witches' history than we have all season. His eloquence in telling the tale was mesmerizing. It was told so quickly and with such assurance I had to replay it three times to take it all in. It was fascinating to learn about the witches running from Salem and forming three circles, along with John's desire to turn a circle dark from within by stacking the deck with his own children. Rather genius, and Royce was the perfect character to unveil the tale.

The added benefit Grandpa Royce brought to the table was emotion from his grandson. Not since his arrival was Jake phased by much, but a hug and condolences from his grandfather and in his eyes could finally be seen some of his soul. I've been waiting for the melting of his tough exterior. Perhaps seeing family again will speed up the process.

Fabulous Faye
I have to take just a moment to bow in deference to the ever witty and entertaining Faye Chamberlain and the lovely Phoebe Tonkin who brings her to life. Every line she utters is magical and I could easily write an entire post dedicated only to her quotes. They would not be the same if delivered by an actress other than Phoebe. She makes Faye absolutely marvelous to watch.

It could be that charisma that made me want so badly for her to be Cassie's sister, the long lost Blackwell child. There was something about their chemistry that I truly enjoyed. I don't know what might have changed if Faye had turned out to be John's daughter, but it wasn't the case. In one of his kind moments, for the dual personality of John Blackwell seems to have no limits, he kindly talked to Faye about her mother and her father, and expressed how proud her father would be of her today. Thus the speculation of Faye as a Blackwell ended.

Black Hearted John
Funny how that same man was able, shortly before his conversation with Faye, to rob Cassie of her grandmother. Yes, Jane's first day home from the clinic was her last day alive. Charles and Jane thought they would finally have their moment to get what they needed out of John and kill him once and for all. Jane got her answer. John didn't kill Amelia. But Charles didn't care and lit the spelled candle Jane had made to kill John. John had plenty of time to rummage through the house while Jane was away, and what was once for him was instead for her.

Jane died on the spot.

Who is John Blackwell? Even after hearing the story from Royce, when he speaks with kindness to Faye or Melissa, I can't tell which side is dominant. Is he truly evil or is there enough good in there to win out the end? Maybe we will only learn that through the strength of his daughters and their ability to be better than the dark magic he wanted for them so that he could control the circle.

The Wild Card
Maybe it's not even fair to call her a wild card, because I can't think of anyone who was placing odds on Diana being John's other daughter. Cassie's sister. It certainly made sense when revealed why Adam found them both so appealing. All this time we've been on Team Melissa or Team Faye when Diana flew silently under the radar. Charles even temporarily housed and fed both of John Blackwell's daughters!

Charles couldn't possibly know the truth. But since his relationship with Diana has consistently been the best of all the parents, throwing that wrench into the ride would cause the entire structure to crumble. Will he find out? What are Cassie and Diana going to do about their knowledge and combined dark magic? Diana wanted out before knowing the news, what will happen to her now?

I have to hand it to the show. I was so certain it wasn't Diana that as Melissa and Faye were ruled out during the episode, I was trying to determine which boy it might be, and if Nick might be coming back as Cassie's brother. Diana was the very last choice on my Blackwell family tree. But it worked, and it left me wanting more. I can't wait until next week, and my fingers are crossed for a second season. What a night! A great new character in Grandpa Royce, the death of Jane and the reveal of Diana as Cassie's sister, not to mention the history since the Salem witch trials. WOW!

What did you think? Were you caught off guard? It's rare when a show can sucker punch me, but it was done tonight. Well played!


Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (152 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter and on Google+.


I don't believe Jane is dead? poor Cassie! not only has she lost her mum! but now her gran? not 2 mention her heart break over Adam?! how much more can Cassie take? her anger/grief will be so great that the dark magic will take her over? I was a little surprised by the revelation of Diana as the other Blackwell but I knew it was way 2 obvious 2 be Faye I thought maybe Melissa though I wasn't sure I did think Diana was 2 innocent but there you go loved that twist but i'm also unsure how they all are part of the circle(the 6 families and all) but i'm sure that will be clear soon I so want Adam 2 remember his feelings 4 Cassie its my favourite storyline! they just have 2 carry on with the whole written in the stars!!!!!!!!!! Blackwell's fake! curse! and elixer! cannot keep them apart! not 4eva!!!! if all our questions can't be answered in the last few eps of this series they have 2 do another series they just have 2!!!!!!!!!!

Strawberry fields

Grandpa Royce was awesome! Usually I hate it when some random character shows up and starts spilling answers (and that happens way too often on Secret Circle), but fortunately Royce's craziness was so great, for the first time I didn't have a problem with that. Plus we finally got to see Jake interacting with someone from his family. And it was great! Speaking of that - are they ever going to show us Melissa's dad? Why is he so irrelevant?

Strawberry fields

OMG, what an episode. That was almost too much to handle! I can't even express how much I love the fact that Diana is the other Blackwell. I always thought Faye was way too simple. Since that little talk between Melissa and John a couple episodes back, I seriously started considering her, but secretly I was always hoping for Diana. We knew the other Blackwell will be revealed in this episode, while Jane's death came out of nowhere. That was the shock of the day for me. Just when we get her back, she's getting killed off… Charles is cool. Enough said. John is cool too. I still can't figure out what his deal is. I hope this wasn’t the last time we saw Callum. How can you not love a bad guy who has a soft spot for one of our girls?


I thought it was a truly amazing episode. But I have one problem concerning plot. How is Diana still a part of the circle? There are six circle families. John Blackwell (the Balcoin bloodline) is not a part of the circle. Cassie is a part of the circle due to her mother. So how does one explain Diana being a part of the circle? I think what the writers are going to reveal is that Charles is Diana's uncle. His sister was her mother (Elizabeth). When she died, he took over and decided to raise her as his own. It's kind of a stretch, but it's the only thing that makes Diana a part of the circle. That's really going to bother me until they explain that...


Great episode the season has really improved.
Diana and Cassie wow.


I knew it from the beginning even though sometimes i said it couldn't be true but I knew it. Wow I must be Sherlock Holmes....


Totally caught me off guard! I figured it out towards the end when Cassie couldn't get into the mine, we already knew Melissa could, and Faye being the sister was just TOO obvious. But it was still an amazing twist because I was certain it was either Melissa or Faye! What a good idea, this brings so much more potential to the show because Diana's "father" Charles is still alive so thats great drama there too. For once we got a GOOD episode! Each of the characters played an important role (Melissa had so much screen time I loved it) and the story progressed! For the first time in months I am actually hoping for a season 2 now.


I must say, that this episode was the best of the entire The Secret Cirle. Keep it up like this and the next season will be great!


This sort of through me off,I was on team Melissa all the way.I've read the books and Cassie,Diana and Faye are the leaders of the circle.The show twisted things making Cassie and Diana siblings.I'm still of the hope that both Faye and/or Melissa have Blackwell/Balcoin blood,just not as strong as Cassie's and Diana's. Diana's so called grandma could sense dark magic.Why couldn't she sense Diana's magic but Cassie's.I can't wait for the next episode and season 2.


Do Only EXTREME thing they could pull to justify D being a part of the circle is mentioning Charles long lost sister! Who had something with JB? and that is a long pull!

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The Secret Circle Season 1 Episode 19 Quotes

A journal. Tied with an actual ribbon. If you leave something like this lying around you're just begging for it to be read.


I can't believe I just rifled my mom's underwear drawer. No one that old should have that many thongs.