Another amazing episode, you guys. Honestly, I don’t understand how this show is so good. It defies logic. I mean, first of all, it’s on the CW, so it’s not big budget. Secondly, it’s aimed at teenagers, and everyone knows teenagers are dumb. Third, vampires? Werewolves? Um, we all saw Twilight, no way this can be awesome, right? WRONG. And fourth, and probably most importantly, all of these people are way too goddamn good looking to also be so talented, because that is just SO not fair. And yet it’s apparently possible, and here we are, with a totally incredible show that never ceases to amaze (Rose is a blight on our past I refuse to acknowledge), even after a season and a half. Wild.
Where do we even begin? I have a harder time getting started when all of the stories are so connected, but Tyler was definitely in the center of it all tonight so let’s start with him and the werewolves. When Brady, (who, it must be acknowledged, has one of the finest head shapes and hair thicknesses ever for a buzzcut) announced that they would do whatever it takes to break the curse, even if they have to kill every single vampire, I was totally like, “Oooooh, sorry buddy. Show’s not called The Werewolf Diaries.” I mean, did he not get the memo? And speaking of not getting the memo, did I miss the one that explains why Jules is always standing stock-still outside in front of the Werewolf Torture Trailer’s door? I mean, that is WEIRD, right? Because here’s the thing. I like camping, but at no time do I ever just stand there for long periods of time like I’m in some weird ass outdoorsy version of Paranormal Activity. And if you’ve also got like the fucking eternal flame of funeral pyres going on, I just feel like there’s other shit to do besides standing outside the door. I mean, why even have the fucking RV? Is it ONLY used for purposes of torture and meeting with Tyler? And if so, and there’s no one currently in it, maybe you can move like five feet away. I’m just saying.
God, what were we talking about, anyway? Oh right, Vampire Diaries.
So the vampires continued to mindfuck Tyler by convincing him to help them go after the moonstone with the promise that he doesn’t have to change anymore, and props to Jules for pinpointing the thing he wants most and exploiting the shit out of it–bitch is everything I want in a villain and more. If she can find a way to execute Angel levels of psychological torture on her unsuspecting victims, I will be hers forever. Anyway, the detail about Elena being sacrificed was conveniently left out of all of this, and Tyler became an unwitting participant in an attempt to get her killed.
I really like the way that Tyler has been written. He’s not a completely sympathetic character–he’s kind of a dickweed and he’s done a lot of really unsavory things, both as a human (everything involving Vicki) and as a werewolf (surrounding Caroline’s capture in the last episode). But he’s also not all villain, which we’ve talked about many times is one of the great strengths in this show’s writing–they very realistically portray characters in shades of gray, and this episode was fucking masterful at that, and not just with Tyler. But he was maybe the most pronounced, and to give credit where credit is due, Michael Trevino has also been really mega kicking ass this season. You can feel all of Tyler’s frustration and pain, but most importantly, confusion–and I actually think that’s a really hard emotion to get across both in acting and writing, and if you want my opinion, I think that’s a lot of what grabbed the Oscar and other miscellaneous nominations for Natalie Portman for Black Swan. Feeling a character’s genuine confusion and disorientation isn’t something that we’ve been collectively exposed to much, so it still feels very like … new and tense.
Plus, I about died at Tyler at the end. I’m still shocked at how much the show has made me care about this character when I hated him SO MUCH in the first season. His weird attempted rape of Vicki was so disgusting and unforgivable, and yet here I am, feeling bad for him. I truly have no justification for this other than … it’s a TV show (and a damn good one). As soon as I saw the flowers for his mom, I panicked a little. And I was glad that he came clean, as much as possible, with Matt, but even as he was doing that I was yelling at the TV, hand to god, “Tyler, don’t get your affairs in order!” (My emotional outbursts are, admittedly, a little weird.) I HATED that he got in that car with Jules although I can see the appeal of getting away, what with his mental state and everything going on, but how can he believe even for a second that she won’t lie to him anymore? Liars are liars, buddy. But at least he’s not dead–there’s been some Twitter speculation since he’s been spending a lot of time in L.A., so hopefully this accounts for that because, again, inexplicably, I’m not ready to let go of Tyler.
The other great thing about Tyler in this episode was some of the great reactions that the other characters were able to have to him, in particular, Matt and Elena. Matt started off so pissed at him and then Tyler was so intent on saying what he needed to say, and so sincere, and of course Matt is so sensitive that he probably picked up on Tyler’s vulnerability (and yes, I am talking about them like they’re real people with real qualities, and again, AMAZING writing, Show) and let him talk. And you could see Matt just soften up (LOOOOOVE Matt) and believe and forgive him, and start to pick up that there was something wrong. Ugh, they have GOT to tell him soon, because I’m dying over here. And as for Elena, I mean … he completely endangered her, AND Stefan, but he told her that he didn’t know and he apologized, and it was so sincere that she instantly forgave him and went to comfort HIM. Perfect. I think that may have been my favorite all-time Elena moment.
Perfect segue moment. Speaking of Elena hugging Tyler, Elena was awesome in this episode. Ya hear that? I said ELENA WAS AWESOME. Let’s all just have a moment here. (See what I did there?) I’ve described Elena a lot of ways, many of them in the same way that you’d describe a bowl of oatmeal with really pretty hair, but never as awesome. But she was actually not entirely helpless here and she did stab Brady–TWICE! She didn’t actually kill him, but seeing as how she weighs roughly a hundred pounds and gave it her best, I’m going to give her an A+ on this one. I guess I did more yelling at my TV than normal tonight, because when she ran up the stairs, I was like, “DO NOT RUN UP THE STAIRS! DID YOU NOT SEE SCREAM?” and then I laughed at myself for the Kevin Williamson connection. God, it’s a good thing I have such great conversations with myself and my TV, because I’m pretty sure “having friends” and “being cool” are two ships that, if they hadn’t already sailed, definitely will after I put all this out into the universe. But, back on topic, she played it pretty smart by leaving her clothes laying around and sneaking back out. Yay, Elena! You figured that all out waaaaay faster than you figured out opening a curtain on Rose, so hurray for the teachable moments that make a difference in our lives!
Less smooth segue, but I also really enjoyed Stefan and Elena in this episode. Yeah, they were totally not boring! TOGETHER! I love when they get a chance to play around a little, and it was nice hearing more about Elena’s past, and her memories at the cabin–fills in some of the blanks. But the best part of them was their fight at the end, where Stefan actually got pissed at her. What did I say last time? Stefan is magic. When he is emotional, the scenes are on FIRE. And him telling Elena that he’s lived and had a full life and being so mad at her for being willing to throw it all away was awesome. Equally awesome? That you could tell that he made a little headway, at least on some level. Get pissed, Stefan! She’ll come around eventually.
That fight, of course, was the result of finding out Elijah’s engame, which is to kill Klaus (no news there), but to do so when he is vulnerable AFTER the sacrifice, which of course will also be the end of Elena. And THAT news came from Bonnie slipping Luka a witch roofie in his frappuccino (I mean, for fuck’s sake, is nothing SACRED?) and hypnotizing it out of him. I have been over Luka pretty much from the beginning and while this was a good plot device to get this information circulating, really the payoff of this related side story was that Caroline picked up on Bonnie and Jeremy and they had some girl talk over it. Yay, girl talk! Yay for Bonnie being back to her former chill, relatively happy self, and yay for her and Caroline hanging out! I like ALL of that. And of course, Caroline encourages romance, and that leads to one of the hotter kisses of the series. The Bonnie and Jeremy chemistry is off the charts, and that was sex-AY. Damn.
Speaking of sex-ay, Damon was around … kind of. He and Alaric were having a bromance moment, and those have been seriously missed, when they were very rudely interrupted by that little werewolf asshole. Alaric was murdered but of course had the magic ring on (which, incidentally, Uncle Bastard wants back), so he reanimated and went on about his business, which of course is the business of fretting over lying to Jenna. Meanwhile, Damon was being tortured for information about where the moonstone was, but he wasn’t talking and I feel like most of this side plot was designed to keep Damon out of the action (and to put him further in Elijah’s debt). And it worked–we needed Elena to step up and there was plenty going on without Damon in this episode (WHAT?), so sidelining him a bit was alright. Elijah came in and saved his ass by ripping out a heart, and then doing a double-fisted heart ripping. Add that to Stefan ripping out a heart, and that’s four this episode. SWEET. I approve of hearts being ripped out as a near pedestrian killing method, and I will just go ahead and accept that as our little nod to Valentine’s Day. Be Mine, TVD … Be Mine forever.
Other random this and that and we’ll wrap it up so the discussion can commence in the comments. First of all … Alaric’s admiration of Elijah’s hair. Hee! Elijah’s hair is so bizarre. But it is shiny. I am more interested in his accent–I don’t know if it’s real, but it’s vague and just slightly unsettling, and is perfect for the character. Also, I’m glad they told us where the moonstone was, because I had kind of lost track of it.
And finally, Katherine being called Kathy? So weird. So … normal.
Okay, that does it for me. What did you guys think? A lot of bases to cover this week, so tear it up in the comments. Any favorite moments, or lines, or stuff I forgot? Go for it!
Tags: Vampire Diaries