Wednesday, July 27, 2011

TV Interlude: The Nine Lives of Chloe King


Another series that has completely surprised me this year is this one based on the books by the same name. The show diverts wildly from the books I'm told though. The series revolves around Chloe, a feisty teenager who finds out she's genetically a part of a clan of catlike beings called Mai and that she has been foretold to bring all the clans together. In addition to that far fetched issue, she also can't kiss humans, lest it kill them a la Rogue on X-Men. That wouldn't be so difficult except for the fact that Chloe has become friends with Brian, a charming young man who likes her a lot and whose father is trying to kill Chloe and her people. Brian doesn't know what she is, making her continued avoidance of a relationship extremely confusing to him.


The premise of the show is far fetched and strange, but the actors are charming. Chloe is a genuinely nice and pretty girl who you can understand why Brian is so hung up on, regardless of her strange behavior. She is trying to be responsible for her weird clan, her human mother, and her friends. Grey Damon, who plays Brian (and has a name like a race horse in a Disney movie) is completely understandable as someone who a teenage girl could fall all over themselves for. While I originally wrote him off as mopey and broody, he quickly proves he has an incredibly bright smile and actually becomes a bit goofy around Chloe. There are Chloe's cute friends who know she's Mai considering she was dead at one point and used one of her "lives" and try to support her in spite of her strange legacy. There's also the subplot of Chloe's Mai friend Jasmine who can't seem to do anything to please her Mai mother and who begins to question some of the Mai beliefs after Chloe questions the morality behind some of them. Chloe's relationship with her mother is also sweet as she tries to shield her, but they are genuinely a loving family.

Then there's the love triangle. Chloe and Brian are clearly hung up on each other, but added to the mix is Alek, Chloe's cocky yet startlingly vulnerable Mai mentor. He has no family left and keeps an arrogant chip on his shoulder until Chloe's irrepressible love for other people and life in general makes him suddenly reconsider his position as a Mai warrior. Actually caring for someone is new for Alek, so he struggles with his feelings for Chloe more than a normal boy.


It's a well balanced love triangle based on the strength of the actors. Alek or Brian could either be unlikable based on how the actors took them, but they are both very different and very charming in their own ways. It's understandable that Chloe struggles to decide which one she likes. Brian is a nice normal guy who appeals to her human side while Alek might be snotty, but softens around her and appeals to the woman she's becoming.

Excellent show, for what it's worth.

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