BEAUTY AND THE BEAST Opinion: Vincent Keller, I Don’t Even Recognize You!

jay ryan beauty and the beast

After pondering about a recent inquiry about how I was enjoying this season of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, it brought me to one startling realization: the hero I have loved seems to have disappeared. Season 1 introduce us to the isolated, lonely Vincent Keller (Jay Ryan), a man in hiding for 10 years with his best friend searching for a cure to the heinous government experimentation subjected to him during his military tenure.

Throughout Season 1, it was a joy to see Vincent shedding some of his fear and loneliness as he made tentative steps to reclaim his life with the aid of Detective Catherine Chandler (Kristin Kreuk). By the end of the first season, he was a strong, admirable man willing to risk anything and everything to protect not only Cat and his best friend J.T. (Austin Basis), but anyone else he deemed under his protection. Vincent had shed that cloak of self-protection invisibility and self-determined isolation in favor of embracing those he cared about and welcoming them fully into his life.

But Season 2 brought back a very different Vincent Keller. After being captured in the Season 1 finale, Vincent was subjected to even more government experimentation and this time they were not content with manipulating his genetic make-up, they delved deep into his psyche as well. In fact, they wiped every memory of his past life.

As fans, we were confident the show would returned Vincent’s memories, and to an extent they have — albeit in a piece-meal fashion – and no one really ever doubted that the Vincent we knew and loved would be completely lost. That, underneath it all, he was the same man. The mind-wipe was only to block the memories, not erase them; and each one came back when exposed to the right memory-trigger.

But what became much more alarming was that fact that Vincent in Season 2 was an entirely different person. His values, morals and the essence of who Vincent was in his soul seemed dramatically altered. He was a government-programmed killing machine. He never once doubted or questioned his missions to eradicate the beasts he was sent to kill. He only had one objective: complete his mission.

In the end, he did just that – and with ruthless precision. But was the cost? It seems to have cost his soul.

The beasts that Vincent was assigned to kill are now gone. The government agency responsible for creating them is gone. The man who wielded Vincent like a weapon is behind bars. So why then is Vincent still so altered?

Was it the awakening of something primal deep within him when he met Tori (Amber Skye Noyes)? Did the fact that Tori was perhaps born a beast trigger a deeper, darker side to the beast within Vincent? Shouldn’t we then see a battle inside Vincent – the man who he is in his soul versus the beast implanted in him? In Season 1, that struggle was acutely felt every day of his life. We never doubted that Vincent was the man and that the beast was just an infection that he struggled to contain and eradicate.

Yet now, it is as if the beast has taken over. Vincent no longer struggles for his identity, he has surrendered to it. We see a beast wearing the shell of a man, not a man fighting the beast within. That beast is quick to anger, to lash out, to give in to his beastly nature and desires. It does not question whether being around Tori is hurting him and costing him his humanity. The beast simply does not question or care.

But we, as fans and viewers, are bewildered. Where is the man that we rooted for so unquestioningly? Where is Vincent Keller?

Season 2 has been a confusing, trying season as we have tried to trust that the writers would return the Vincent that we knew and loved. But instead, they gave us an imposter. A beast masquerading as a man. A beast wearing Vincent’s face and who has stolen his life. A beast that owes no loyalty, friendship or love to everyone that was important to Vincent Keller. He barely tolerates J.T.’s friendship and overtures of finding a cure. He is outright antagonistic towards Cat, his former true love and soulmate, goading her to the point forcing her to shoot him. He only goes through the motions of what is expected of him. He will only save a human life if it is in his best interests. The Vincent Keller we knew from Season 1 would have willingly sacrificed himself for others without question. The self-interest oozing from the Season 2 beast-version of Vincent is repulsive and disorientating. In our hearts, we know this is not Vincent Keller.

This is perhaps why we feel that Season 2 is still the search for Vincent Keller. The beast that came back is not the man we know and love. It is something else. It is someone else.

So I again ask: Vincent Keller, where are you? When will you come back to us? Are you gone forever? We are anxiously awaiting your safe return so that we can banish the beast pretending to be you. He is not human. He has no heart. He only wears your face.

Please come back to us.

To see if our prayers are ever answered and Vincent does return, be sure to tune in on Monday nights for all new episodes of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST at 9:00 p.m. on the CW.

Tiffany Vogt is the Senior West Coast Editor, contributing as a columnist and entertainment reporter to TheTVaddict.com. She has a great love for television and firmly believes that entertainment is a world of wondrous adventures that deserves to be shared and explored – she invites you to join her. Please feel free to contact Tiffany at Tiffany_Vogt_2000@yahoo.com or follow her at on Twitter (@TVWatchtower).

  • Neethi

    This article so aptly articulates my concerns and why I just couldn’t take this season after a point. It’s hard to trust when I’m not being given much to hold on to. The author just made me realise how much I miss the old Vincent. After a very long time, I had felt this way about a fictional character. Had I not loved Vincent so much last season, I probably won’t have been so hurt by these changes. I understand he’s been through hell and back but beyond a point, it’s exhausting to make excuses for what he’s done and how he’s treated those around him. He’s no better than his captors.
    Thank you for this write-up! 🙂

  • OrchidSky

    Thank you for voicing exactly what I think. Unfortunately, I think Vincent Keller is gone for good and only the beastial and ammoral version of himself will preveal. It was a waste, really. Of good character, of loyal fanbase and of good storyline. For what? Apparently, only to oil Brad Kern’s ego. I hope he had enjoyed to make our show lose the only chance it had to survive the cruel bite of the ratings.

  • Samantha Wolf

    If anyone has seen “Recipe for Disaster” and still feels like this.Please rewatch and get past bloody Tori and see the bigger picture,

  • JulieDawn

    Pity you didn’t wait until after Ep212 to write this…much of what you say is answered in it.

  • Denise Hart

    I agree with Samantha and JulieDawn! Watch the episode. It IS a game changer. Please let’s stop with the negativity. Thank you.

  • Carmen

    If you just wait a day to make the article you would see that Vincent you want yes is. In fact at the end of the last chapter could be seen clearly is. Although many of the attitudes of Vincen 2.0 are very human.

    I miss the past Vincent too, but I understand that has changed after everything they have done

  • Pat Jackson

    I have watched Ep212 and still agree with what this author writes!

  • Angela Paraboschi

    a painful journey that forces him to look himself now the old Vincent comes back

  • sinbella

    I think episode 12 explains why Vincent has felt/acted the way he has. He can’t be blamed for what Cat’s bio dad did to him, the immense torture they put him through. Plus he didn’t choose to be a beast, everything that has happened to him, has not been his fault. This episode also explains how Tori affected him, not just amplifying his powers, but his feelings and thoughts. Its impossible to compare Vincent in S1 to Vincent S2, drastic changes have taken place since they kidnapped so of course he is not going to think/act like the old Vincent.
    Slowly though, he is finally finding himself, and with Tori gone, hopefully, he will be able to control his beast side, and get his humanity back.
    What he needs is support and love from the people around him. I know JT will always stick by him unlike others.

  • Viki Carter

    I think you are true #BATB fan encouraging us to watch in anticipation for this to happen.
    I love this series and while not happy with everything that has happened,still support the cast,crew writers,producers and writers.
    This series has changed it’s theme of Vincent as a victim to one of Vincent claiming his place in the outside world the only way he knows how.
    I am sure my patience will be rewarded and the loving and caring Vincent will come back to us soon

  • Elita Hooper

    You need to stop comparing Vincent’s they are different. You need to separate old Vincent from new Vincent yes they are a different person. But I’d you watch 212 you will see old Vincent coming back. We do not need this negatively as we roar for third season. Maybe you need to watch season 2 from the start and just maybe you might see what most beasties see old Vincent come through

  • Ina Wegerif

    I totally agree with you! In ep 211 we already saw old Vincent re-surfacing. But it would’ve been better to wait until after watching ep 212. I don’t wanna spoil too much but in this ep you really can see old Vincent coming back! If you don’t see it after watching then I don’t know.

  • Ina Wegerif

    No, we definitely don’t need this negativity. After watching ep 212 you will realize old Vincent is coming back. He went through a lot and was deceived by certain people and then Tori came and made him not able to think straight. Now he knows he made some wrong choices and can start now to find his old self. Have faith please #BatB!

  • Jarneen

    You have posed this as a question, but damned the whole season’s story. The very issue here being it is a season long story. Vincent 1.0 evolved from a shell of a man hiding to a man confident and protective of those he loved and deemed worthy.

    Vincent 2.0 IS evolving from a shell of a beast into a man, confident and protective of those he loved and deems worthy.

    Did you not accept that Tori’s beast effected more than his beast? Did you not notice that he still puts his life in danger to help Catherine save Tess? Did you not see the worry on the man’s face when he found JT on the floor of the man cave after the gem had been stolen? Did you not see the man acknowledge why he was angry with Catherine after the realisation of what every member of her family, herself included, had done to him and then, acknowledge that there was more to the story than just him? Did you not see the man struggle with the public persona that Tori had created for him because it was a lie about the person he really was? Oh, that’s right, there is no resemblance of Vincent 1.0 in Vincent 2.0 – silly me.

    Now, in saying that, you of course you are entitled to your opinion, as I too have one, but…. if you are going to pose the questions such as you have…

    “So I again ask: Vincent Keller, where are you? When will you come back to us? Are you gone forever? We are anxiously awaiting your safe return so that we can banish the beast pretending to be you. He is not human. He has no heart. He only wears your face”

    Maybe first, you could look a little deeper than just the pretty face and shell of the beast you have been seeing and re-watch the episodes again. The real Vincent’s personality hasn’t changed, it just got lost amongst the hurt and manipulations of what was done to him by forces out of his control.

    He is returning to be the man again, albeit a little to slowly for some, but perfectly understandable why it has taken him some time, when you look at the story so far, and where it is still to go, not just what happened last week. Maybe you would start to see his evolution and be excited about his returning to his former self, fighting for the girl he loves. In order for that fight to happen, there has to be a MAN in there or it would never happen and he would have just run off with Tori

  • Laura

    They aren’t telling an “epic love’s story” anymore. I’m not even sure what’s the story they’re telling now. I don’t have any special love for this show anymore, the same way VinCat’s love is also not special, it’s just an average show to me.

    I just feel numb. I don’t care about what’s going to happen to VinCat, if Gabe will roll in the sheets with Cat while planing something evil that probably will involve eviscerating someone – preferably Tess because there’s no lower woman in my eyes right now – so he can have the world’s power. Whatever happens, this show doesn’t have a place in my heart anymore. It’s just another show that’ll forget as soon as they announce the cancellation.

  • Juju

    100% agreed. i Miss my Vincent. I need it
    Please send him back to us

  • Karen M James

    I feel like I’m the only one that actually gets it. So yes, Vincent is not the same Vincent because as JT pointed out, the man’s DNA has been altered. How can anyone expect him to be the same Vincent when the DNA has been changed? Yes he was programmed, had his memory wiped clean and they turned him into a killing machine. So people expect him to find his humanity like overnight? Really? How realistic is that? The way I see it, Vincent’s behavior is very rational. I think the fans want him to snap back into Catherine’s tool and he can’t. Vincent is making a comeback into the man he was because he is no longer being used by Cat’s father. His memories are proving to be stronger than the programming and that makes him a stronger person. Yes, Tori was fueling his darker side and that may be the biggest mistake this show has made by not focusing enough on that. I find that all I keep seeing is this show trying to point out how much Vincent has hurt Cat. Did he kidnap himself? Did he reprogram his own mind? Was he purposely not remembering Cat? No..No and No. Not only that, he actually has no control over what Tori was doing to him and in fact, it took him a while to figure out exactly what she was doing to him- again realistic. I honestly would love a happily ever after but I sure as hell do not want Vincent worshipping Cat. I find that that is how she has come across since S1. Everything has to be her way.
    I’m probably the only one of the opinion that Gabe is still a beast and his actions will turn around to bite Cat in the ass and of course Vincent will be there to rescue her….as usual.

  • Juliana Schlatter

    Ohhh my goodness I have just started watching season 2 and I AM so upset with this new Vincent, I cant feel the emotion and feelings I used to feel along the characters in season 1