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04 July 2008 @ 10:02 am
Dingbat Alexandra  
[Cross-posted from forkni-l, where my previous post received a wink and a rhetorical inquiry into my feelings about Alexandra the Dingbat Barmaid.]

Yup. :-)  I don't much like the Alexandra character from "Fatal Mistake."  She earned her epithet.  But on the up side, I don't think we're supposed to like her!  I think she's supposed to be precisely what she is, and that's one of the glories of first season.

In my opinion, despite her shortcomings, Alexandra is a well-rounded character compared to some of her later-season equivalents, such as Amalia (CL) or Alyssa (DoN) or Liselle (TG).  At any rate, she gets more lines than they do.  We know some of Alexandra's past, her hopes, her motivations: that she had never been farther than the next county, that she longed to travel, that she found Nick attractive in part for being well-traveled, and of course that she, um, wasn't shy.  We know she was a tavern serving woman, and we know some of how she approached her customers.  We know she searched for Nick over time.  And in the present day, we discover that she resents and despises her vampirism, putting her into a select company with Nick, Serena, Sofia and perhaps Urs.  (Maybe even Feliks, but that's another analysis entirely.)

Of course, Alexandra is also an easily manipulated nitwit, by all appearances.  Revenge on Nick, but not on Lacroix?  From a strictly first-season angle, I wonder whether Lacroix planted that idea in her, and perhaps maneuvered that she would not find Nick until after he was gone, if ever he was gone -- a little revenge insurance from beyond the grave.  Except that the outcome of the plan would likely embarrass Lacroix, if that were the aim.  She misses Nick's heart with her plank-sized stake.  The logic of her revenge is swiss-cheesed, as Nick points out to her.  When Lacroix winds up his pieces and turns them loose, they don't usually falter so badly, which is perhaps an argument against her being anything but a project long ago cast aside.  And if that's what she is -- left to function all on her own through the centuries -- perhaps she hasn't done so very, very badly?  It's just that we know characters who do it better!

Surely Alexandra is meant to parallel the young hoodlum who attempts to take a misguided revenge on Stonetree in that episode.  Both Alexandra and the boy have committed against others the very crimes of which they accuse the person on whom they wish to take revenge.  Neither of them run on all cylinders -- the boy is apparently drug-addled -- and so her dim-bulb status serves a structural purpose in the episode; I respect that!

Have I gone and talked myself into liking Alexandra just a little bit better?  Maybe.  But that's a long, long ladder she's got to climb up to guest-star ground level.