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Alex O'Loughlin's Guide to Moonlight, Part 4: Episodes 13-16

In the final installment of this four-part seris, actor Alex O'Loughlin wraps up his look at each episode of Moonlight, taking on episodes 13-16.
Episode 13
“Fated to Pretend”
Written by Gabrielle Stanton & Harry Worksman
Directed by David Barrett

Mick is enjoying the idea of being human again, but when Beth is threatened by the killer of her BuzzWire boss Maureen, he feels he has no choice but to ask Josef to turn him back into a vampire so that he can rescue her.

“I remember reading that scene with Mick and Josef in the loft when Mick is going off to be the hero, and Josef slaps him around a bit and says, ‘You’re out of your mind,’ and Mick realizes what he has to do,” says O’Loughlin. “So he reluctantly asks Josef to turn him back. I thought it came out great and I thought it was an evocative scene. That’s one of the things I’m intrigued by about these creatures – there’s such ambiguity to them, which this scene played in to sexually.”

Episode 14
Written by Erin Maher & Kathryn Reindl
Directed by Scott Lautanen
When a member of the paparazzi takes photos that could expose the truth about Mick, Beth does the unthinkable: she goes to Josef to get him to take care of the “situation,” creating a pact between them and that Mick knows nothing about. Meanwhile, Mick and Beth decide to start pursuing a romantic relationship.

“What I like about the episode is the fact that it showed the risk that Mick faces on a daily basis in terms of possible exposure,” O’Loughlin says. “Between this paparazzi guy and the fact that D.A. Talbot has a file on Mick, you start to explore what could happen if this part of the lives of these creatures were exposed public. And with Beth going to Josef – wow! Knowing what her request will mean for this photographer shows a bit of ruthlessness on her part, but also the depth of her feelings for Mick.”

Episode 15
“What’s Left Behind”
Written by Jill Blotegovel
Directed by Chris Fisher

Flashbacks illuminate Mick’s past when the rescue of a kidnapped youth suggests that the boy may be the grandson of a woman Mick had had an affair with back during World War II. For Beth, life is changing as she quits BuzzWire and is offered a position of “civilian investigator” for the DA’s office.

“The subject matter in this episode is pretty great, and there’s a lot of potential for storytelling dealing with Mick’s past,” notes O’Loughlin. “Think about it: you’re looking at this guy who looks like he’s twice as old as Mick is, but could be his son. I felt like this was the strongest of the four that we did when we came back from the strike. I enjoyed playing this different version of Mick and this different side of him. Sometimes you wonder if this guy has the capacity to feel anything above and beyond what we’ve seen, and I kind of wanted to look a little deeper. Essentially he was faced with the things he wants most: his humanity back, his mortality and the chance to grow old and die. Which is a strange thing to want, because it goes against what we as humans think we want. We want to stay young. But he faces that in this one, and he has the hope that maybe his bloodline is carrying on. That was really fun to play. There was no shortage of drama or stakes in that episode.”

Episode 16
Written by Ethan Erwin
Directed by Fred Toye

In the series finale, an exploration of the vampire culture and vampire justice is explored when a female vampire threatens to expose every vampire in Los Angeles. Towards the end, Beth wants to call the relationship off with Mick, but he declares his love for her and the two of them kiss passionately as they embrace the future.

“It felt like we did some pretty cool stuff in this one,” says O’Loughlin. “It was great seeing the different vampires together and have us out on this mission. Some very nice performances in it.”
The standout moment for him, naturally, is the climax when Beth says they can’t be together – largely because of the codes governing the vampires -- but he nonetheless comes back into her apartment and the two begin to kiss.

“He’s trying to keep the boundary there and the reality is that he can’t allow, despite what his heart says, this human girl to dictate the moral code of something that’s been around for thousands and thousands of years. So he will always have boundaries there; he is a vampire. But then there’s the thing that he’ll always love her, too. That’s always been the great quandary of that character. Then he leaves and what followed just came out of the moment. I was walking away from the apartment and I stopped outside the door and stood against the wall for a moment before going back inside. I wanted to continue that thread in the series, that feeling, that there is a wall between them that will always be there no matter what. But in that moment he decides he’s still gonna have a go at it. The love is too strong, he’s not going to walk away and he’s still going to try and make it work.”

Despite its premature cancellation, this final moment in Moonlight at least fulfilled the promise of the show’s premise, having these two characters from different worlds uniting.
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