Tag Archives: Damon and Elena dance

Deconstructing Delena – My Picks for the Top Ten Damon and Elena Moments from the SECOND HALF of The Vampire Diaries’ Second Season

It’s been a good year for us Delena fans on TVD, hasn’t it?  (And, judging by where things left off, next year promises to be EVEN BETTER!  YIPPEE!) 

After an admittedly shaky start (Jeremy Neck Snap Incident, anyone?), us stalwart D&E fans fans were eventually rewarded for our patience, with a Season 2 Smorgasbord of Tasty Delena goodness.  Within just the first 10 episodes of the Season, we were treated to multiple phallic encounters . . .

 . . . passionate exchanges . . .

 .  . . near kisses . . .

 . . . and, of course, one VERY SPECIAL (but equally frustrating) declaration of love . . .

Having experienced the joy of all that, who would have thought that the scenes I just described would ultimately end up being just a precursor to all the FABULOUS Delena Decadence that was to come?

And it is for this reason that, while I had already crafted a list of the Top Ten Delena Moments of Season 1 . . . and followed that up with a SECOND list, featuring the Top Ten Moments of the FIRST half of Season 2 . . . I simply couldn’t resist writing a THIRD article, focusing on the Top Ten Delena Moments of the SECOND half of Season 2.   After all, far be it for me to deny my fellow Delena fans, the opportunity to relive the ecstasy of THE FIRST KISS . . .

 

What follows are my favorite Damon and Elena scenes from the last eleven episodes of TVD’s second Season, starting from “The Descent,” and ending with “As I Lay Dying.”   So, without further adieu, let Sweet, Sexy, and Swoon-worthy Nostalgia BEGIN!

10. “Be the Better Man, Damon.”

Episode: “Daddy Issues” – 2 X 13

Setting the Scene:

Team Save Elena (a.k.a. The Scooby Gang) has been making some questionable decisions lately.  And it’s been trying Damon’s already-limited patience, BIG TIME.  First, Stefan comes up with the “brilliant idea” of inviting Known Vampire Hater Uncle/Father John, and Elena’s Evil Bio Mom Vampire Isobel back to town, so that they could “join the team.”  Damon and Elena don’t trust either of these two sorry excuses for parents, as far as they can throw them.  However, both recognize that John might have information the two could use to defeat Klaus.  “Be the better man,” Elena cautions Damon for the first time that evening, before Damon meets John at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls to exchange a few words.


Damon DOES, somehow, manage to hold his tongue, when speaking to John (just barely).  Not long after, however, Elena gets a call from Stefan, informing her that the werewolves (Jules and Wereoaf Brady) are holding Vampire Caroline hostage.  As a condition of Caroline’s safe release, the werewolves wish to “strike up a deal.” They will return Caroline, in exchange for resident werewolf, Tyler Lockwood. 

Upon hearing this, Damon, (who, up to this point, had been completely kept out of the loop, regarding the whole “Tyler is a werewolf” thing) is FURIOUS about this recent turn of events.  And he is not at all shy about sharing these feelings with Elena . .

Potent Quotables:

Damon: (about Tyler) “He’s a werewolf.  He needs to die.  I’m willing to kill.  It’s win/win!”

And later . . .

Damon: “You need to stop doing that . . . assuming I’ll play the good guy, because it’s YOU who’s asking.”

Elena: “Be the Better Man, Damon.”

And still later . . .

Damon:  (to Uncle/Father John) “First Dad Duty?  Ground your daughter . . . keep her here.”

Elena: “I’m coming with you!”

Why it made the list:

“Daddy Issues” was an important episode in the Delena canon, because it, in effectively introduced us to a completely different character, one who we hadn’t seen up to this point.  Ladies and gentleman, meet Ponytail Elena.  (She will appear again in “The Last Dance,” home to TWO MORE of our Top Ten Delena Moments.  Coincidence?  I think not!) 

While Hair Down Elena might not be sure, at this point in the game, of her feelings for Damon, Ponytail Elena already has a pretty good idea she wants him BAD!  (Remember that look of jealously flashing across Ponytail Elena’s eyes, when Andie hit on Damon for the first time?  Or the look of triumph on Ponytail Elena’s face, when Damon initially rejected her?)  Not unlike Katherine, Ponytail Elena knows EXACTLY what she needs to do to get her way . . .

It was interesting seeing THIS scene back -to-back with the earlier one in the episode, in which Elena instructs Damon to be “kinder and gentler” in his discussion with Uncle/Father John.  In both scenes: (1) Elena pleads with Damon to be “good.”  (2) He balks.  (3) She asks him to be the “Better Man.”  (4) He balks AGAIN, but reluctantly agrees. (5) She demands to follow him whereever he is going.

However, the DIFFERENCE between these two scenes is why this one made the list, and the previous one didn’t.  Unlike in the first scene, this time, Ponytail Elena is more brazen with her manipulation of Damon.  Observe how the Petrova Doppelganger gently places both of her hands on Damon’s arms affectionately, and looks up at him with her puppy dog eyes, when she asks him not to kill Tyler. 

Also different from the first scene, is Damon’s reaction.  All Damon has to do is take one look at Elena’s hand positioning, and he knows EXACTLY what she’s trying to do.  “You need to stop doing that,” he demands, eyes blazing.

I love how Elena, naively, acts as if she isn’t aware of her manipulation of Damon “Doing what?”  She asks innocently.

However, the minute he makes mention of it, Elena guiltily removes her hands from his arms.  She’s no dummy, that Ponytail Elena!  Damon’s response to Elena “(Assuming I’ll play the Good Guy, because it’s YOU who’s asking”) is the closest we’ve come to seeing Damon admit his feelings for Elena directly to her, ever since he told her he loved her, and compelled her to forget it, during “Rose,” back in episode 8.

And yet, the fact that Elena is behaving this way, to begin with, illustrates that she probably already has a pretty good idea of Damon’s feelings for her.  When affection doesn’t work, Elena falls back on her catchphrase, “Be the Better Man, Damon,” she tells him, for the second time that evening.  The phrase almost acts as a hypnotic trigger for Damon, working on him instantly.  Damon will always obey this command of Elena’s, no matter how much he may hate doing so.

And why not?  After all, it’s Damon’s incorrect belief that Stefan is a “Better Man” than he is, that keeps him from more actively pursuing Elena, in the first place!  At this point in the series, Damon still believes he doesn’t DESERVE Elena.  We see this at the end of the episode when the “Better Man” line makes it’s third appearance.  “I’m in love with a woman I can’t have,” Damon tells Andie, during the pseudo-couple’s infamous Bathtub Scene.  “I have to stay together (read “in control of my emotions”) to protect her, which means, I can’t be who I AM!”

As the series draws to a close, Damon will gradually come to learn how wrong he is in this assessment.  But, for now, the elder Salvatore Brother will just have to rejoice in the mini victory of having let Ponytail Elena know that he has her number. 

And, hey, she DID want to “come with him” to rescue Tyler, didn’t she?  Only this time, Damon said “NO!”

“Nice try, Sweet Cheeks!  It’s called ‘playing hard to get.’  Get used to it!”

So, you might be wondering why I included this scene at the top of my list, especially since it seems to show more of a manipulation of Damon on Elena’s part, than actual affection.  Well . . . I don’t think that’s ALL it shows. 

In “Daddy Issues,” more than any episode we had seen in Season 2 (at least up to THIS point in the season), Damon and Elena are relating to one another in that same super-close, married couple, type way, we witnessed during KEY Season 1 Delena episodes, like “Bloodlines,” and “Blood Brothers.”  And, don’t forget, this is POST Jeremy Neck Snap Incident!  So, that’s saying a lot!

Yes, they are bickering . . . and arguing . . . and Elena seems to be getting on Damon’s nerves a bit.  But beneath all that, are two people who are on the same page.  They understand how eachother think.   And they subconsciously take comfort in eachother’s company.  Why else would Elena keep following Damon around for the ENTIRE first half of the episode?  Where was STEFAN during all that time?  HMM?

9. Damon asks for Elena’s forgiveness

Episode: “As I Lay Dying” – 2 X 22

Setting the Scene:

Having been bitten by Teen Wolf Tyler, during his werewolf transformation, Damon believes himself to be doomed to die a painful and ugly death by were-rabies.  If Rose’s rapid disease progression is any indication, Damon has a few days to live at most, and just hours, before he begins showing signs of dementia.  Despite all this, Damon has made the selfless, but tragic, decision not to inform Elena of his impending death.  “The last thing [Elena] needs is another grave to mourn,” Damon tells Stefan, when his younger brother first learns of the fatal bite.

And yet Damon has one dying wish: that Elena forgive him for going against her wishes, and force-feeding her his blood, prior to The Sacrifice.  (He did this, so that if Klaus, in fact, killed her, she would at least return as a vampire.) 

Thanks to Uncle/Father John sacrificing his soul . . . and his life, for Elena’s, Elena was revived following the Sacrifice, and was able to retain her humanity.  And yet, Elena has still not verbally forgiven Damon for his actions.  In this scene, Damon arrives at Elena’s house, the morning after John’s and Jenna’s funeral, in hopes of obtaining the absolution he so desperately needs from the woman he loves more than life itself.

Potent Quotables:

Damon: “I want to apologize . . . please  . . .  Elena feeding you my blood, I was wrong.  And I know I don’t deserve your forgiveness, but I need it.”

Elena: “And I need some time . . . maybe a lot of time.”

Damon: “Sure . . . of course . . . take all the time you need.”

Why it made the list:

This short simple scene is important, in that it functions as the first step in the journey Damon and Elena take toward mutual forgiveness, acceptance, and possibly much more, during the final episode of the series.  The tragedy of this scene, as mentioned above, is that Elena doesn’t know that Damon is dying.  Yet, he refuses to tell her. 

Damon “needs” Elena’s forgiveness, so that he can die in peace.  And yet, he doesn’t want that forgiveness to come from a place of PITY (Take THAT, Pity Kiss THEORISTS!), or guilt.  In the epic words Damon himself used last season, in explaining the reason he didn’t compel Elena during the pair’s trip to Georgia, “I wanted it to be real.” 

The OLD Damon might have become frustrated with Elena’s stubborness, and refusal to forgive him.  (I mean, it’s not like she actually turned into a VAMPIRE, or anything!)  Remember how quickly Damon started to pout and complain, when Elena refused to forgive him for the Jeremy Neck Snap Incident, earlier on in the season?  But this is a different Damon from the one we knew back then.  This Damon truly is “a Better Man.”

Notice how, throughout the scene, even though Damon is obviously going through a TON of personal sh*t, his focus is always on Elena.  Watching her linger over Aunt Jenna’s room in the morning, Damon IMMEDIATELY knows the anguish Elena is feeling, upon seeing that bed empty.  “It will get easier,” he tells her comfortingly.   “Then again, you already knew that.”

And even when Elena refuses to forgive Damon, and he realizes that there is a good chance he will die without receiving that forgiveness, Damon still considers Elena’s feelings to be of the utmost importance.  He even manages to smile at her, and say, “Take all the time you need,” when deep down, he knows that his own time is slowly running out . . .

The fact that Damon and Elena started the episode in THIS sad place, however, makes where they end up, by the end of the episode, all the more miraculous . . .

8. Elena rescues Damon . . . from himself!

Episode: “As I Lay Dying” – 2 X 22

Setting the Scene:

Damon’s time is running out.  His were-rabies has now set in at full force.  He’s feeling weak, is in an incredible amount of pain, and is beginning to have difficulty distinguishing his flashback hallucinations (featuring Katherine) from reality.  That’s the BAD news. 

The good news is that Damon’s hallucinations have been oddly therapeutic for him.  He finally sees that he was personally responsible for his decision to turn vampire, back in 1864.  Neither Stefan, nor Katherine forced him to do it.  He has to find Elena, and tell her this (as well as FINALLY confess his true feelings for her), before it’s too late.

Elena needs to find Damon too.  She found out about his werewolf bite from Stefan, and feels terrible about the way she treated him earlier that day. (See scene above.)  Elena wants to let Damon know that she forgives him for feeding her his blood prior to the Sacrifice.  She also knows that Caroline’s AWFUL mother Lizard Forbes wants Damon dead.  And Elena wants badly to rescue Dying Damon from that b*tch.

Eventually, Damon and Elena do find one another.  But Damon just so happens to be in the throes of one of his most vivid hallucination, when the reunion occurs . . .

Potent Quotables:

Elena:  “Damon . . . come on . . . come on . . . We need to get you out of here.  We have to hide you.”

Katherine: (in flashback, after puncturing her neck, and allowing blood to drip from it) “If you want it, take it.  It is your choice to make.”

And later . . .

Elena:  (as Damon bites Katherine / Elena) “Damon, you don’t have to do this.”

Why it made the list:

This scene works on two levels.  On one, we have Damon, just hours away from death, finally coming to the realization that he is personally responsible for his decision to become a vampire.  On another, we have Elena, who, after two seasons of being rescued repeatedly by Damon, finally has the opportunity to put her own life and safety on the line, to rescue him right back. 

On some level, Damon and Elena have been searching for one another, the entire episode.  It was Damon’s instinctive knowledge that Elena was looking for him outside, that prompted Damon to send Alaric for blood, knock out Lizard Forbes, and escape his makeshift cage in the basement of La Casa de Rich and Awesome.  Likewise, it was Elena’s need to find Damon, and comfort him, during his final moments, that prompted her to break through the glass of the police station with that chair.  (I wonder who’s going to end up having to pay for THAT!)

Of course, once Damon finds Elena, he shifts right back into hallucination mode, and can only see Katherine.  In the hallucination, Katherine’s words to Damon are direct.  She tells him that the decision to become a vampire is his choice to make.  And by biting down on Katherine’s neck, and taking her blood, he makes that choice.  Yet, in the present day, Damon is biting on Elena’s neck.   Her words to him are symbolic too.  She tells him, “You don’t have to do this.”

And though she’s referring to BITING HER, Elena’s words also apply to biting KATHERINE back in 1864.  Damon didn’t HAVE to do that.  He didn’t have to become a vampire.  And he WOULDN”T have become one, if he hadn’t made that choice.  The anguish on Damon’s face, upon waking from his reverie, and realizing that he has bitten and hurt the woman he loves, is truly heartbreaking. 

But what is sweet about the scene is Elena’s reaction.  Yes, Elena is in pain.  Yes, Damon hurt her.  But Elena isn’t angry at Damon for what he did, or worried for her own safety. 

Like Damon’s actions at the beginning of the episode, Elena’s actions here are completely selfless.  All she cares about is protecting Damon, and getting him to safety.  The way Elena holds and comforts Damon in this scene, you can tell just how much she truly cares about him.  And this show of affection is only a precursor of what’s to come later on in the episode . . .

7. Elena Comforts Damon after Rose’s Death

Episode: “The Descent” – 2 X 12

Setting the Scene:

Damon earned the ire of Big Bad Wolf Jules, when she began to (correctly) suspect that he had killed her werewolf buddy, Mason Lockwood, a.k.a. Tyler Lockwood’s Hot Uncle. 

 The elder Salvatore brother moved even further up Wolf Girl’s Poopy List, when he and Alaric cornered her in the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, and (under the guise of hitting on her) were-rufied her drink with Wolfsbane. 

Fast-forward to the next Full Moon.  Jules, in werewolf form, barges into La Casa de Rich and Awesome, intent on chopping on some Salvatore skin.  (Can you blame her?  YUMMY!) 

However, instead of sinking her teeth into Damon, Jules’ pointy choppers land smack dab on the backside of Damon’s most recent Screw Buddy, Vampire Rose. 

As a result of the bite, Vampire Rose contracts some bizarre form of were rabies. (Then again, isn’t all were rabies, by definition bizarre?).  Shortly thereafte, Rose, pretty much, starts going apesh*t.  (She looks pretty hideous too.)  Rose uses her Sick Time, constructively, by chasing Elena around La Casa de Rich and Awesome, and trying to eat her.  (Personally, I prefer to spend MY sick time watching bad daytime television.  But, that’s just me . . .)

When that fails, a wacked-out Rose breaks free from La Casa de Rich and Awesome, and starts chowing down on innocent Mystic Falls residents.  Damon eventually finds Rose, and brings her back to the house.  However, Rabies Rose’s days of eating the Good People of Mystic Falls are numbered.  And Damon knows it. 

Using his vampiric powers of dream walking, Damon sits Rose down in her lap, like the unruly baby she has become.  Being the Generous Mercy Killer he is, Damon creates for Rose a warm fuzzy (read “extremely cheesy”) dream, in which she and he are frolicking through the meadow. 

When Rabies Rose is feeling sufficiently blissed out, he stakes her, but not before shedding a few tears, on her behalf.

In THIS sweet and poignant Delena scene, Elena, having learned of Rose’s death, arrives at La Casa de Rich and Awesome to check up on Her Future Lover . . .

Potent Quotables:

Elena:  “I came back to make sure you are OK.”

And later . . .

Elena: “Damon I’m your friend.”

Damon:  “I’m well aware of that.”

Elena: “And a friend usually knows when their friend is hurting.”

Damon: “What do you want to hear?  That I cared about Rose?  That I’m upset?  Well, I didn’t.  And I’m not.”

Elena:  “There you go, pretending to turn it off, pretending not to feel.  Damon, you’re so close.  Don’t give up.”

Damon:  “I feel, Elena, OK?  And it sucks!  What sucks even more is that it was supposed to be me.  Jules was coming after ME.”

Elena:  “You feel guilty.”

Damon:  “That would be human of me, Elena, and I’m NOT HUMAN!  You’re one to talk about giving up.   That’s all you’ve done is give up!  Go home!  There’s been enough doom, gloom, and personal growth for one night.”

Why it made the list:

You’ll notice that in this scene, unlike the ones that preceded it, I transcribed practically the ENTIRE conversation between Damon and Elena in the “potent quotables” section.  That’s because every line of this scene is heavily laden with meaning.  In fact, with the exception of the final scenes of “As I Lay Dying,” Damon’s and Elena’s exchange during “The Descent” is probably the most honest exchange they have with one another the entire season. 

Just as, in the earlier scene I posted from the finale, where Damon instinctively knows what Elena is going through, when she stares at Jenna’s empty room, Elena, having experienced Rose’s demise along with him, knows exactly how hard it was for Damon to ultimately end her life. 

We’ve seen many scenes in which Elena has pushed Damon away, for one reason or another.  However, this time, it is Damon trying to do the pushing, and Elena vying for closeness. 

Ahem?

But Elena makes a mistake, when she calls Damon “her friend.”  Of course, she’s trying to be helpful.  However, reminding Damon of their “just friends” status, during this difficult time in Damon’s life, is like rubbing salt in the wound. 

(Then again, perhaps, this is a case of thou doth protest too much?  Maybe Elena is already starting to feel a closeness to Damon beyond friendship, and needs to reiterate the “just friends” nature of their relationship to convince herself that this is the case?  Wishful thinking on my part?  Maybe . . . but maybe not. ;))

When Damon denies having any feeling about Rose’s death, however, Elena goes for the “Better Man,” card again.  Though she doesn’t use those exact words, by telling Damon that he is “so close” to humanity, that is, in effect, what she is saying.  And Elena is right.  Rose’s death did cause a sort of emotional breakthrough of sorts in Damon. 

But these emotions scare Damon, because, as he admits to Andie, in the following episode, they make him feel out of control.  They also cause him to remember how much he misses being human.  “That would be human of me, Elena.  And I’m NOT human,” he argues.  (Talk about a case of “Thou doth protest too much!”)

But even though Damon commands Elena to leave for a third time, during the scene, Elena refuses to go, without giving Damon the comfort she so desperately knows he needs.  She hesitates as she turns to leave, looking at him intently for a few beats before pulling him in for a deep Full Body Hug.  Elena’s show of affection surprises Damon, and, eventually moves him to tears. 

But Damon isn’t the only one who needed to feel closeness in that moment.  While Elena may have decided to hug Damon, in a friendly and comforting way, the look she gives him, when she pulls back from the hug, hints that she might have felt something deeper during it, than she initially expected.

For a few moments before she leaves, we see Elena stare pointedly at Damon’s eyes and lips.  She does this so intently, that, the first time I watched this scene, I really did think that she might kiss him.  But, alas, our first Delena kiss was still quite a few episodes away . . .

6. “I’ve got moves you’ve never seen!”

Episode: “The Last Dance” – 2 X 18

Setting the Scene:

Though he has not yet shown his “true face” to the Scooby Gang, Klaus has not been shy about expressing his desire to “capture” Elena, and use her in his Wacky Sacrifice Ritual.  By compelling one of her classmates, Klaus delivers a creepy message to Elena that she should expect to “meet” him at the sixties-themed dance being held at the high school.  Rather than avoid the dance (which, to be honest, would have made a heck of a lot more sense), the entire Scooby Gang, Elena included, decides to attend.  Their plan is to draw Klaus out, and then kill him . . . somehow. 

Needless to say, tensions are high.  And no one is more tense than Elena.  That is, until . . .

Potent Quotables:

Why it made the list:

Damon: “How you doin?”

Elena: “Umm . . . freaking out a bit.  You?”

Damon: “Cool as a cucumber.  Come on . . . remember the last Decade Dance.  The vampires were all ‘Arrrghhhh’ and you were all ‘Ahhhhh!”

Elena:  “Right . . . and . . . we won.”

Damon: “Yes, we did.”

Elena:  “You’re good at this.”

Damon: “I’ve got moves, you’ve never seen.”

You know what I actually just noticed about this scene?  (And it’s something that I had never picked up on, in the 20 or so times I watched it before hand.)  There’s this little moment, before Stefan leaves to go talk to Caroline, that he gives Damon a bit of a head nod, actually ENCOURAGING him to dance with Elena! 

Dear old Selfless Stefan . . . you have no idea what you are getting your “girlfriend’ into!  Doesn’t Baby Salvatore know that no girl can resist a Dancing Damon?

Least of all . . . Elena . . .

Still, you might be wondering why this scene ranks so high on my list, when the ones preceeding it are so much more “emotionally intense.”  But, actually, the fact that this scene WAS SO LIGHTHEARTED AND SIMPLE is precisely why it earned such a high ranking. 

The Delena Dance of Season 2, much like the one in Season 1 that preceded it, allowed us a glimpse into what Damon and Elena will be like as an ACTUAL COUPLE.  In just a few short seconds of grooving together, Damon and Elena, illustrate all the fun, sex appeal, wit, good humor, and understanding that is going to make Delena such a force to be reckoned with in season 3.

I love the look of shock and arousal that crosses Elena’s face, when Damon first whirls her into his chest.  As we’ve seen often with Elena, when she comes in close contact with Damon, she often seems mesmerized, by his mouth in particular. 

And, though Damon is trying to play it, “cool as a cucumber” (his words, not mine), we can see that he isn’t exactly immune to Elena’s charms either.  There’s a brief second where Damon loses himself in the movement of the dance, and forgets all about Klaus, the Sacrifice, and all his schemes.  In that moment, these are just two beautiful people who are insanely hot for one another.

That being said, when Elena openly admits to Damon that she is “freaking out a bit,” Damon immediately becomes refocused on the task at hand:  Operation Cheer Up Elena!  And Cheer Elena up he does, through a combination of fun, un-self-conscious goofiness . . .

 . . . good humor, and logical reasoning.  Damon immediately is able to set Elena at ease, and make her smile, in a way, few members of the Scooby Gang are able to do.  But in addition to being really funny, Damon’s “The vampires were like Arrrgh, and you were like Ahhh,” was also a wise and reassuring statement.  In other words, “We beat the bad guys before, and we will beat them again.”

Of course, once Damon has sufficiently calmed Elena down, and converted her from Brooding Damsel in Distress to Giddy High Schooler Dancing with Hot Boy, Damon ramps up the charm, dipping her, pulling her close to his body and face, and whispering seductively in her ear, “I’ve got moves you’ve never seen.”

“You’re good at this,” Elena admits breathlessly, looking very much like she wants to makeout with him right there on the dance floor.

Well, isn’t that the Understatement of the Year . . .

5. “I can’t lose you.”

Episode: “The Last Day” – 2 X 20

Setting the Scene:

Not willing to accept that Bonnie’s death (through the exhaustion of all her witch powers) is the ONLY way to kill Klaus, Elena defies the wishes of the ENTIRE Scooby Gang, by de-staking Elijah, and bringing him back to life. 

Elijah claims to have a plan to save Elena’s life, while still allowing Klaus to proceed with the Sacrifice Ritual.  Then, once Klaus is in the throes of a werewolf transformation, and is in a weakened state, ELIJAH will stake KLAUS with the same dagger Elena used to stake HIM in “Crying Wolf.”

The problem is that Elijah’s Big Plan to “save” Elena seems . . .what’s the right word . . . oh yeah . . . LAME!  It involves some sort of Romeo and Juliet-esque elixir he cooked up, that would make Elena APPEAR to be dead, throughout the Sacrifice Ritual, when, in fact, she is really alive.  Having never used the elixir before, Elijah can’t guarantee that it will work. 

 The idea of taking such a gamble with Elena’s life sickens Damon.  So, he stalks off to his room to sulk.  Elena (who LOVES Damon’s bedroom, more than any other room in La Casa de Rich and Awesome, including, apparently, Stefan’s room) immediately follows Damon there, so that the two can screw like bunny rabbits “talk.”

Potent Quotables:

Elena: “You disappeared.”

Damon: “I don’t want to hear anymore.”

Elena:  “I need you to understand why I’m doing this.”

Damon: “Why?   It clearly doesn’t matter what I think.”

Elena: “I’ll be FINE, Damon.  I’ll drink the elixir.  Bonnie will kill Klaus, and all of this will finally be over.”

And later . . .

Damon: “You think it will work . . . You WANT it to work . . . Why am I the only one who’s convinced it WON’T.  There has to be another way.”

Elena:  “There isn’t.”

Damon:  “You are going to die, Elena.”

Elena: “And then, I’ll come back to life.”

Damon:  “That is not a risk I am willing to take.”

Elena: “But I am . . . it’s my life, Damon.  My choice.”

Damon: “I can’t lose you.”

Elena: “You won’t.”

Why it made the list:

I’m just full of controversial picks today, aren’t I?  Here’s the scene where Damon FORCE FEEDS Elena his blood, and stakes Stefan, and I’ve got it as number 5 on my Delena list.  But, hopefully, after you rewatch the scene, you will see why.  You see, I feel like there’s a real parallel between this scene, and the scene that takes place between Damon and Elena at the end of “The Last Dance,” right before Elena decides to stake Klaus.  (See #3 below.) 

 Both scenes, begin with Elena entering Damon’s room.  Both scenes involve a discussion between Damon and Elena, regarding the best way to go about saving her life, during the Sacrifice. 

In “The Last Dance,” Elena REFUSES to put Bonnie’s life on the line to save her own.  Here, Damon refuses to put Elena’s life on the line for Elijah’s harebrained scheme.  “There HAS to be another way,” each party says to the other, more or less.  Both scenes climax (see what I did there?), during a moment of intense intimacy between the couple.  And, just when it seems like the two are finally in agreement with one another, there’s a moment, where you see one of them making the decision to do something they know the other person will HATE.

As I mentioned earlier, Elena LOVES Damon’s room, and adores his bed.  And whenever he is upset, she loves to go and find him there, so that she can “reach out and touch him.”  There’s an interesting dichotomy in the scene between how close Damon and Elena come to one another, and how far away their ideas as to the best course of action remain.  Throughout the scene, though Damon and Elena, both take physical steps toward one another, psychologically, they remain more far apart than ever.

Using her “Be the Better Man” trick, Elena attempts physical contact with Damon, to bring him back from the brink, when he is at his most heated.  Damon is angrily and accusatorily pointing a finger at Elena, when Elena affectionately grabs his hand in both her own, bringing it closer to her face, and massaging it, as she speaks.  

There’s a moment where Damon looks down at his and Elena’s now clasped hands.  He knows EXACTLY what Elena is trying to do.  And yet, he loves her so much, that he can’t resist her.  His pointed finger relaxes into Elena’s embrace.  His body posture softens, as he appeals to Elena’s obvious care and concern for his well being, “I can’t lose you,” he tells her, in all honesty.

“You won’t,” she assures him, eyes widened and dilated. 

Elena really believes at this point that she has reached Damon . .. and that he will go along with whatever she says, just like he has so many times in the past.  Except, sometime between Elena’s grasping of his hand, and her final promise to him, Damon comes to his decision to force-feed Elena his blood.  But even as he is making this decision, a part of him knows he will live to regret it.

“Oh crap!  I’m really about to f*ck up now, aren’t I?”

4. Damon revives Elena

Episode: “The Sun Also Rises” – 2 X 21

Setting the Scene:

As far as Klaus is concerned, the Sacrifice Ritual was a success. Aunt Jenna and Jules each gave up their lives as the vampire and werewolf sacrifices, respectively.  As the Petrova Doppelganger, Elena also gave her “life” to Klaus, when he bit into her neck, and drained her of a significant portion of her blood. 

After snapping the neck of the witch performing the ritual, Damon picks up an unconscious Elena and carries her to Stefan.  But Stefan does not wish to take Elena home just yet.  He wants to stay and make sure that Bonnie and Elijah defeat Klaus, once and for all. 

So, Damon carries Elena back to La Casa de Rich and Awesome in his arms.  At this point, her fate is still unknown.  Is she dead?  Will she come back a vampire, and spend eternity hating Damon for the role he played in her transformation?  Or has the Scooby Gang somehow managed to find some way for Elena to return to life as a human?  Damon is about to find out . . .

Potent Quotables:

Damon:  “Come back as a vampire, and I’ll stake you myself.  So, DON’T.  Because I can’t stand the idea of you hating me forever.”

Why it made the list:

It’s hard not to see this scene as blatant foreshadowing for a future Damon and Elena union, in the truest sense of the word.   I mean, who can ignore the symbolism, of Stefan asking Damon to take Elena home, himself, so that HE can stay and make sure Klaus is dead.  (Shades of Stefan’s choice in the season finale, much?) 

And then, watching Damon literally carry Elena through the darkness and the fire, to the safety of the home SHE owns, which is also his.  Then, of course, Damon CARRIES ELENA ACROSS THE THRESHOLD of the mansion.  It doesn’t get much better than that, folks!

The look of love and affection on Damon’s face, as he hovers over Elena’s unconscious body, gently running his hand across her face, and through her hair — unable to take his eyes off her for even one second — is as beautiful, as it is heartbreaking.  Who WOULDN’T want a guy to look at them like that?  And though the words Damon says to Elena, as he awaits her fate, might seem callous on the surface, they are actually the most romantic words he’s uttered throughout the entire episode.

Contrast these words to Damon’s “I can’t lose you,” in the earlier scene.  Damon force fed Elena his blood, because HE couldn’t bear the idea of living without her.  That gesture, and the thought process behind it, while romantic, is also somewhat selfish. 

Here, Damon’s thoughts are ONLY for Elena.  He now knows that SHE would rather die than be a vampire.  And even though it would literally KILL Damon to live on Earth for even a moment without Elena, he would be willing to stake her himself, if he knew that was what she truly wanted.

Of course, there’s another aspect to Damon not wanting Elena to become a vampire.  He “can’t stand the idea of [her] hating him forever.”  This is also a departure from the Damon we’ve grown to know and love for two seasons.  In “The Last Dance,” Damon was heard telling Stefan, that he didn’t care whether Elena hated him, as long as he was able to keep her safe. 

Now, we see that this isn’t the case at all.  Elena’s thoughts and feelings matter to Damon.  And from now on, he will fight just as hard to protect them, as he will to protect her life.

The other part of this scene that I loved was the intimate and powerful expression on Elena’s face when she awakens from “death” to find Damon hovering over her.  A commenter on my recap of this episode wisely noted that Elena died staring at Stefan, during The Sacrifice, and awakened staring at Damon.  There is certainly something poetic about that. 

Additionally, there lies within the meaninful look Elena gives Damon the possibility that she remembers his confession of love for her during the “Rose” episode.  After all, were it not for John’s sacrifice, which, as you can see, happens AFTER Elena awakens, not before, Elena, having died with Damon’s blood in her system, would have reawakened a vampire.  And VAMPIRES remember all instances of compulsion from their lives, as Caroline taught us, following HER vampiric reawakening . . .

So, does Elena remember Damon’s compulsion of her to forget that she loves him?  It’s indeed possible.  In fact, that very knowledge is hinted at, during the finale, and in my NUMBER 1 Delena moment of the Second Half of Season 2. 

3. “I will always choose you.”

Episode: “The Last Dance” – 2 X 18

Setting the Scene:

Damon may have saved Elena’s life the night of the sixties dance, but he did it by breaking her heart . . . albeit temporarily.  When Damon and the rest of the Scooby Gang learned that Klaus was possessing Alaric’s body, they determined, to their chagrin, that they had unwittingly provided him with information on their secret Klaus-Killing Weapon: Bonnie and Her Awesome Witchiness.  Now AlarKlaus was after Bonnie.  He wanted her out of the picture, to ensure himself a “Stress Free Sacrifice.”  And he wasn’t going to let up, until she was dead . . .

So, Bonnie and Damon came up with a devious plan.  Bonnie would pretend to exhaust her witchy powers, during a faux attempt at defeating Klaus at the dance.  Then she would play dead . . . kind of like a dog.  But the scheme had a complication: in order for KLAUS to believe that Bonnie was dead, Elena had to believe it too.  And in order for ELENA to believe that Bonnie was dead, Gossip Boy Stefan couldn’t be let in on Bonnie’s and Damon’s plan either. 

When Elena found Bonnie’s “dead” body in the school snack room, she was inconsolable.  And when Damon arrived back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, seeming not the least bit upset about Bonnie’s so called “loss of life,” an enraged Elena slapped him across the mouth . . . HARD.  It wasn’t until after Elena almost took off his BEAUTIFUL face that Damon finally decided to come clean to the woman he would do literally ANYTHING to protect. 

Damon admitted that Bonnie wasn’t really dead.  She was just hanging out in a tomb with Elena’s brother “resting her eyes.”  This made Elena feel like a bit of an idiot.  It also gave her a good excuse to enter Damon’s room AGAIN, under the guise of “apologizing” . . .

Potent Quotables:

Elena: “I understand why you did what you did.  I mean, Klaus was fooled and . . . Bonnie’s alive.”

Damon: “Here’s to duplicity.”

Elena:  “Let’s get one thing straight, Damon.  Bonnie will not die for me.  I will not let that happen . . . We’ll find another way [to kill Klaus].”

Damon: “I hope so.”

Elena:  “Look, I shouldn’t have hit you.”

Damon: “Apology accepted.”

Damon: “Let me be clear about something, if it comes down to you and the witch again, then I will gladly let Bonnie die.  I will always choose you.”

Why it made the list:

Earlier, I showed you the scene in which Damon made the decision to force feed Elena his blood to save her from certain death.  In my analysis of that scene I told you that it directly paralleled the scene from “The Last Dance,” in which Elena, after having an equally emotional and honest conversation with Damon, made the (as it turns out, not so hot) decision to de-stake Elijah.  Like the first scene, this one worked on two levels.  On one hand, it was yet another romantic bedroom scene for Damon and Elena, in which the pair let one another understand just how well they understood one another, and how much they cared for eachother.  On the other, it was a deceptive scene, because, at the very moment when it seemed like the couple had come to an understanding, one of its members was plotting to do something very stupid.

It was interesting watching Damon’s and Elena’s reactions to one another throughout the scene.  For instance, when Elena comes into Damon’s room, he clearly expects her to lecture him on not telling her his plans regarding Bonnie’s fake death.  Aim when Elena admits that she understands exactly why he did what he did, Damon is a bit taken aback.  But he is also clearly impressed by the object of his affections foresight, and understanding that sometimes the ends DO justify the means.

“Here’s to duplicity,” Damon says.  (As in, “YAY, I don’t have to apologize anymore, for doing something that I don’t think was wrong at all, and would do again in a second.”)

Elena again uses her trusted tactic of initiating physical closeness with Damon to make her point about not wanting Bonnie to die.  And though Damon does seem to bend a little, to Elena’s wishes (“I hope so,” he offers doubtfully, when Elena assures him that they will find another way to kill Klaus), we know that Damon’s position on the subject remains essentially the same. 

Now comes the time for Elena to apologize for the Face Slap Heard Round the World . . .  Elena clearly feels terrible about doing that to Damon, and wants him to know this.  When just moments ago, Elena was stalwart and strong in ensuring Bonnie’s continued livelihood, suddenly she seems shy, contrite, and a smidge coquettish.  As Elena apologizes, she dips her head downward, and self-consciously runs her hand through her hair. 

Of course, this works.  Damon can never stay mad at Elena for long.  And he accepts her apology almost immediately.  But then he makes the statement, that, while incredibly romantic, seals both of their fates, “I will always choose you.”

Upon hearing this, we see Elena go through a wide range of emotions in a very short amount of time.  There is awe at the grandness of Damon’s remark, flattery, at the extent of his feelings for her, a deep affection for the man willing to do whatever it takes to keep her safe.  It’s a powerful experience for Elena.  But then . . . she SIGHS . . .

For me, the above-illustrated facial expression of Elena’s mimics the one Damon made, when he realized that he was going to force feed Elena his blood, and, in doing so, jeopardize his relationship with her.  Likewise, Elena realizes that there is no way she will ever be able to convincce Damon to save Bonnie’s life over her own.  And so, in this moment, she decides to de-stake Elijah. 

Three times, before Elena leaves Damon’s room, we see her hesitate and turn back toward him, wanting to admit what she is about to do.  There’s a big part of Elena that knows that de-staking Elijah could end up being a huge mistake.  And that part of Elena wants to confess her plans to Damon, so that he can talk her out of them.  But, ultimately, Elena’s desire to protect her friends . . . well . . .  at least to protect Bonnie . . . wins out.  And so, she leaves Damon’s room with a firm sense of purpose.

Examining this scene, side by side with the scene from “The Last Day,” even the casual viewer can see how truly alike Damon and Elena are in their way of thinging, their fierce protectiveness of others, and their courage in the face of all opposition.  One thing is for sure, as a couple, these two will be unstoppable!

2. The Cuddle

Episode: “As I Lay Dying” – 2 X 22

Setting the Scene:

Having finally found a were-wolf bitten Damon, just hours away from death, Elena rushes him to the comfort of La Casa de Rich and Awesome.  Huddled together in Damon’s bed, Damon and Elena silently vow to make every last minute between them count.  Now is not the time for secrets. 

No words can be left unsaid.  No apologies can be left unspoken.  No emotions can be left unburdened.  But will these two intimately linked individuals — who have shared so much together, during the short time they have known one another — be able to confess their true feelings for one another, before it is too late?

Potent Quotables:

Elena:  “It’s OK, Damon.  I’m right here.”

Damon: “Elena, get out of here.  I can hurt you.”

Elena:  “No, you won’t.  I’m here until the very end.  I’m NOT leaving you . . . It’s OK . . . It’s OK”

Damon:  “It’s NOT OK.  All those years, I blamed Stefan.  And no one forced me to love her.  It was my own choice.  I made the wrong choice . . . Tell Stefan I’m sorry, OK?”

Elena: “I will.”

Why it made the list:

As you might have noticed, Damon and Elena have been dancing around true displays of affection for one another, all season.  There have been forehead kisses, hugs, hand and shoulder grabs, and even a little grinding on the dance floor.  But it took Damon being moments from Death, for Elena to really give herself to him completely. 

It is no accident that again, in the final moments of the Season 2 finale, Damon and Elena are huddled together in Damon’s bed.  Watch as Elena lovingly holds Damon in her arms, cradling his body close to her with one arm, as she delicately blots the sweat from his brow with another. 

Elena saw what Rose went through in her final hours.  She recognizes the possibility that Damon, in this sickened state, could be a real danger to her.  But Elena cares for Damon so much, that she is willing to put his needs before her own.  And despite Damon’s pleas that she go, for her own good, Elena refuses to leave Damon’s side, even for a moment. 

For Damon’s part, we can see in his eyes, how much he NEEDS Elena to be near him.  And the fact that he asks her to leave, shows just as much selflessness on his part, as Elena’s staying does on hers.  Because Damon has a lot to say to Elena.  He has come to the realization that he is to blame for his own situation, and he needs Elena to know this before he dies.  He also needs Stefan to know this. 

Such is their honest relationship with one another that Elena never lies to Damon, and tells him that he’s going to survive this.  She doesn’t sugar coat things for him.  When Damon asks her to apologize to Stefan, she doesn’t tell him, “You can do it yourself, because you are going to live.”  Rather, she just pulls him closer to her, and tells him that she will.

It’s tragic that it took a lethal illness to bring Damon and Elena to this place.  Yet, it is somehow fitting.  After all, Damon’s and Elena’s relationship has always been one built on intense emotions and extreme situations.  And, sometimes it takes the threat of losing something to finally force you to realize that you can’t live without it.

1. THE KISS!

Episode: “As I Lay Dying” – 2 X 22

Setting the Scene:

[See description for #2 above.  THIS spectacular scene takes place just one “commercial break” after THAT one. ;)]

Potent Quotables:

Damon: “This is even more pitiful than I thought.”

Elena: “There is still hope.”

Damon: “I’ve made a lot of choices that have gotten me here.  I deserve this.  I deserve to die.”

Elena:  “No, you don’t”

Damon: “I do, Elena.  And it’s OK.   Because if I would have chosen differently, I wouldn’t have met you.  I’m so sorry.  I did so many things to hurt you.”

Elena:  “It’s OK.   I forgive you.”

Damon: “I know you love Stefan.  And that it will always be Stefan.  But I love you.  You should know that.”

Elena: “I do.”

Damon:  “You should have met me in 1864.  You would have liked me.”

Elena:  “I like you now.  Just the way you are.”

Damon:  “Thank you.”

Elena: “You’re welcome.”

Why it made the list:

I don’t think it was a surprise to any of you, that this ended up being my number one scene.  I mean, really, could Delena fans have asked for anything more.  I mean, I couldn’t have been happier, if Damon and Elena stripped naked and had their way with one another, as the final credits were rolling (which is totally how Season 3 is going to end, by the way). 

Season 1 ended with Damon kissing Elena . . . except it ended up NOT being Elena, but Katherine.  So, it was extremely fitting that Season 2 would end with a REAL Delena kiss.  The kiss itself was beautiful.  The way that Elena snuggled up close to Damon, looked lovingly at his face, and leaned over to give him a quick kiss on the lips.  While it was happening, Damon awoke from unconsciousness, a real life Sleeping Beauty, with a small but beautific smile on his face.  His eyes fluttered, and his mouth opened into a slight “O” shape.  He wasn’t expecting this.  And then, he THANKED HER, for giving him the greatest gift she could ever give him.

And yet, for many fans, there was just as much of a gift in the words that preceded the kiss, as in the kiss itself.  Damon has never been much for apologies.  And yet, he is able to apologize twice to Elena in this episode, once at its beginning for the force-feeding, and here, for ALL of his wrong doing throughout the two seasons.  So, when Elena FINALLY gives Damon the forgiveness he has been waiting for, it is a total and complete forgiveness.  Completely gone are the grudges of seasons past.  Elena and Damon are finally, once again, on an even playing field.

And it is because Damon and Elena are in this open and honest place, that Damon can FINALLY admit to Elena that he loves her, and allow her to REMEMBER it, thereby completing the circle started in Rose.

Back then, Damon made Elena forget his love, because he deemed his confession, “The most selfish thing he ever did.”  But Damon’s new confession of love is not in the least bit selfish, because he doesn’t expect Elena to love him in return.  Heck, he doesn’t even expect to live out the hour!  Damon repeats Elena’s words to him from the Season Premiere.  “I know you love Stefan . . . it will always be Stefan,” but he says them with no bitterness or ire.  He’s made peace with his little brother, and Elena’s love for him.  He simply believes that Elena has a right to know that he loves her more than life itself.  Because that kind of love is a gift to be cherished, even if it cannot be returned.

Except . . . maybe it can, because Elena’s cycle of always pushing Damon to be the “Better Man” is closed in this scene too.  That ends with Elena’s declaration that she likes him now, just the way he is, troubled, headstrong, impulsive, and deeply worthy of someone’s love.  The threat of losing Damon has caused Elena to realize just how much she needs him in her life.  And though Damon IS in fact a Better Man than the one we met in the pilot, he is still a flawed character.  

But it are these flaws that bond Damon and Elena, and will undoubtedly continue to bond them throughout Season 3, as they cope with the guilt of their growing bond with one another, in Stefan’s absence, and struggle to ascertain what they mean to one another.  In many ways, “As I Lay Dying,” was an end.  An end of the Season, an end of the Sacrifice, and end of a very important period of personal growth for Damon.  But in many other ways, it is a turning point.

And when Damon sits up in his bed at the end of the episode, and looks at Elena with new and healthy eyes, some would say his new life is just beginning . . . and so is hers.

So, there you have it, folks: my picks for the Top Ten Moments from the final 11 episodes of Season 2 of TVD.  Which ones were YOUR favorites? 

P.S.  Has the TVD hiatus left you hungry for more SHIPPER-friendly Top Ten Lists?  If so, be sure to check out my super talented, and often hilarious, blogger pal Cherie’s analysis of the Top Ten FORWOOD moments from Season 2.  Trust me, you won’t regret it!  The post is made of awesome. 🙂

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under Damon and Elena, Damon Salvatore, Delena, Elena Gilbert, Television Super Couples, The Vampire Diaries, Top Ten Lists

The Vampire Diaries’ Damon Salvatore and Elena Gilbert: The Top Ten WINNING Season 1 Moments for OUR Team!

 

It’s a choice that heroines in teen dramas have had to grapple with for ages: the brooding and sensitive good boy versus the unrepentant and dangerous bad one. 

And nowhere on television is that eternal question more fully explored than on the CW’s The Vampire Diaries, where good can be bad . . .

 . . . and bad can be deliciously GOOD!

Unlike in other shows, where the “good guy” is so bland and boring as to make the heroine’s choice completely obvious, writers Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec actually make a startlingly good case for both the “straight-laced” Stefan Salvatore, and his “fun loving killer” brother Damon.  Nonetheless, a choice HAS to be made . . .

Threesomes are fun, but they can’t last forever . . .

 . . . and I’ve made mine.  In Stefan’s defense, 9 times out of ten, when this sort of question is raised, I will throw MY lot in with the Bad Boy, without a second thought.  But there is something about Damon’s and Elena’s relationship that makes it special.

Unlike most heroines in these type of dramas, Elena is NOT drawn to Damon out of any sort of need for rebellion against authority.  After all, Elena’s parents are dead, and Useless Aunt Jenna certainly isn’t going to be “reigning her in” any time soon.  As for Damon, well, sure, his attraction to Elena may have started because (1) he wanted to stick it to his baby brother; and (2) she looked SO MUCH like his ex .  . .

 . . . but that changed almost immediately after he met her. 

Damon and Elena understand one another in a way no one else around them can.  They know eachothers’ vulnerabilities and weaknesses, as well as their respective strengths.  This allows them to be at ease with one another, and let their guards down in conversation. 

When Damon and Elena are in the same room together, the sexual tension between them crackles and pops like a sparkler on Independence Day.  And even when they aren’t saying anything, the pair can carry on entire conversations through eye contact and body language.

This is why what I am about to do here is so difficult.  When EVERY interaction between two individuals is electrically charged with sexuality, emotion, and meaning, how can one POSSIBLY boil down their entire complex relationship into JUST 10 scenes?   Nonetheless, I figured it was worth a try.  What follows are ten Damon / Elena scenes from Season 1 of The Vampire Diaries.  These scenes, in my opinion, really encapsulate the pair’s relationship, and comprise the best of what this couple has to offer.

[Note: For whatever reason, The CW has always been a bit finicky about what videos it allows us fans to embed in our blog posts.  Therefore, most of the below videos will require you to click on an internal link, that will redirect you to YouTube, before you can watch.  That being said, when I tell you the slight inconvenience you must endure to see the videos will be entirely worth it, I promise, I am not lying . . .]

10) Damon and Elena get flirty in Elena’s bedroom . . .

Nothing says “manly” like a boy in a pink bed, cuddling with a Teddy Bear.

Episode: “Under Control” – 1 X 18

Setting the scene: Elena invites Damon over for an emergency meeting to discuss Stefan, who has been acting strangely ever since he ingested Elena’s blood, during the prior episode . . .

Potent quotables:

DAMON:  “You ask, I come.  I’m easy like that.”

DAMON: (Calls out to a suspicious Jeremy, who is eating cereal in the next room) “No, Elena, I will NOT got to your bedroom with you!”

Why it made the list:  I love how Damon challenges Elena’s growing attraction to him here, by invading her personal space.  Watch the glee Damon takes in laying on Elena’s bed, hugging her teddy bear, fingering her photographs, and fondling her bras and delicates.  Then, at the end of the scene, Damon invades Elena’s person, as he moves in close, trapping her up against the vanity table.  In that moment, without saying so, Damon is forcing Elena to confront her feelings for him, and how they differ from her feelings for Stefan.

9) Damon gives Elena a rose

Episode: “Under Control” –  1 X 18

Setting the scene:  Damon and Elena are at a Founder’s Day pre-party, where Stefan is drinking heavily, in an attempt to dull his hunger for human blood.  Elena expresses her concerns to Damon as the two sit next to one another at the bar.  But Damon is more concerned about Elena’s brother, Jeremy, who has been asking questions about Vicki Donovan’s death. 

 (Background: After Damon made Vicki into a vampire, she violently turned on Elena and Jeremy.  Stefan killed Vicki to save them.  Then, at Elena’s request, Damon buried Vicki’s body, and compelled Jeremy to forget what had happened.)

Potent quotables:

DAMON: (Mimicking Jeremy) “Oh, but sheriff, someone buried her.  Who would do that?”  (raises hand)  “I know, I know!  ME!”

And later . . .

DAMON: (Upon agreeing not to use any more compulsion on Jeremy) “OK.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

Why it made the list: For me, this scene really illustrates the snap, crackle, and pop of Damon’s and Elena’s witty banter.  These two are clearly at ease with one another.  Check out the pair’s body language, as they angle their chairs toward eachother, and repeatedly brush limbs.  I also love the old-fashioned way Damon “courts” Elena, by selecting a rose from a nearby bouquet, sniffing it to make sure it is of top quality, and delicately placing it in her hand. 

So often, we forget that Damon “grew up” in the mid 1800’s.  This scene gently reminds us of that.  When Elena receives the rose, she can’t help but be flattered and intrigued by Damon’s gesture, even though she knows she shouldn’t be.

8 ) Things “heat up,” while Damon and Elena are in the kitchen together. . .

Episode: “Children of the Damned”  – 1 X 13

Setting the scene: Damon has dropped by the Gilbert home for dinner, unannounced.  After the meal, Damon and Elena wash dishes together.  Things quickly evolve from fun and flirty, to serious and intense, when Damon inquires as to Stefan’s true motives, in agreeing to help Damon free his long lost love, Vampire Katherine, from a nearby tomb.  Elena initially shrugs off the question, but Damon confronts her directly, imploring her to be honest with him.  She isn’t . . .

Potent quotables:

ELENA:  “Don’t do that”

DAMON:  “Do what?”

ELENA:  “That move was deliberate.”

DAMON:  “Yeah, I was deliberately trying to get to the sink.”

And later . . .

ELENA: “I’m wearing vervain, Damon.  It’s not going to work.”

DAMON:  “I’m not trying to compel you.   I just want you to answer me . . . honestly”

Why it made the list: So many of Damon’s and Elena’s interactions revolve around the issue of trust.  Can these two individuals trust one another?  Well . . . that really depends on the episode. 

For me, this scene can really be broken down into two parts.  The first part of the scene is lighthearted and flirtatious.  Notice Damon’s highly sexualized “Ohhh . . . mmmm” when he “accidentally” bumps into Elena on the way to the sink.  While Elena pretends to be annoyed by the grope, the sly grin on her face says otherwise.

The second scene is more intense.  Damon can sense that Stefan and Elena are lying to him, but instinctively trusts Elena, and refuses to believe she could do anything so dishonest.  When Elena accuses Damon of trying to compel her to tell him the truth, he appears to be truly offended that she would think he would do that to her, after all they had been through.  When Damon asks Elena if he can trust Stefan, he is revealing to her a vulnerable side of him that she hasn’t seen before.  She feels guilty about lying to Damon, as evidenced by the way her eyes drift downward, refusing to meet his, at 1:18.  Then again, she may just be mesmerized by those gorgeous lips of his . . .

7) Damon and Elena get wet (in the rain)

Episode: “Let the Right One in” – 1 X 17

Setting the scene: Stefan is being held captive by the Hidey Hole Vamps (a random plotline developed, and promptly discarded mid season).  The Hidey Hole Vamps came from the tomb Damon opened during “Fool Me Once” (Episode 14).  You know, the one that was SUPPOSED to contain Vampire Katherine, but didn’t?  So, understandably, Damon feels a bit responsible for his brother’s kidnapping.  Elena of course, is beside herself, and wants part in the rescue.  But Damon fears that if Elena comes along, the responsibility will become too much for him.  And he will lose both Stefan AND Elena, in the process.

Potent quotables:

DAMON:  (Lovingly cupping Elena’s wet face in his hands).  “Elena, I know.  But I don’t know how to get him out.”

Why it made the list:  This short scene is intensely emotional for both Damon and Elena.  Both characters have completely let their guard down.  Elena, who is intensely strong willed, and usually highly adept at keeping her emotions in check, is near tears, at the thought of Stefan being killed by the Hidey Hole Vamps.  She feels helpless, and has stored all her hopes in Damon. 

As I mentioned earlier, Damon feels responsible for this whole situation.  He desperately wants to protect Elena and Stefan, and fears he is about to let them both down.  Damon, who has always been supernaturally strong, and can usually mask his feelings with bravado and snark, is completely stripped down and vulnerable here.  And he hates it .  . .

6) Damon watches Elena sleep

Episode: “Friday Night Bites”  – 1 X 3

Setting the scene:  Ummm, I think you all are smart enough to figure this one out on your own . . .

Potent quotables: 

STEFAN: (in voiceover) “I felt there was hope.  That somewhere deep inside, something inside Damon was human, normal.”

Why it made the list:  This scene, from the third Episode of The Vampire Diaries, is important, because it is truly the first time we see anything resembling humanity in Damon.  Up until this point, all we have seen him do is kill and manipulate people.  Every word spoken by him had an ulterior motive.  Every gesture was made in malice.  Here, we know, Damon’s actions are completely uncalculated, BECAUSE no one else can see them.  Not even Elena, herself, who is unconscious the entire time. 

It’s a short scene, only a few moments long, and (aside from the voiceover) dialogue free.  But those few seconds speak volumes about Damon’s complexity as a character, and his early feelings for Elena — feelings that would only grow stronger, as the series progressed . . .

5) Elena falls victim to Damon’s “Eye Thing”

Episode: “Founder’s Day” 1 X 22 (The Season 1 Finale)

Setting the scene: Elena has just changed out of her 1800’s attire, following the Founder’s Day parade, and a ride on the Miss Mystic Falls float.  Ever since Elena’s biological mother told Elena that Damon “loved her” (“Isobel” – Episode 1 X 21) things have gotten a bit awkward among our favorite Vampire Threesome.  And Elena desperately wants to clear the air. 

Speaking of clearing the air, things of become unusually chilly between Elena and her little brother, Jeremy, following Jeremy’s discovery that Elena has been keeping information aboutVicki’s vampiric demise from him.  She also played a major part in having Jeremy’s memory of the event wiped from his consciousness.

Potent quotables:

DAMON:  “I like you better like this.  The period look, it didn’t suit you.”

ELENA:  “Is that an insult?”

DAMON:   “Actually, Elena.  It is a compliment, of the highest order.”

And later . . .

ELENA:  “So, I think you should stop with the flirty little comments, and that . . . Eye Thing . . . that you do.”

DAMON:  “What eye thing?”  (Does Eye Thing . . .)

ELENA: “Don’t make me regret being your friend.”

Why it made the list: In this scene, we can truly see how far Damon has come, from seeing Elena as a conquest, and a doppelganger of his long lost love, to being a sexy, intelligent, and caring woman, in her own right.  The fact that Damon prefers Elena wearing modern clothes, to Elena wearing Katherine’s clothes, speaks volumes about how much his feelings for her have grown.  Further evidence of that is found later in the scene, when Elena tells Damon not to make her regret being his friend.

Initially, of course, Damon’s face, which has been playful and seductive, since the opening of the scene, falls.  Here’s a sexy popular playboy, one who has NEVER had any trouble with the ladies.  And he has just been placed in the Friend Zone. 

But what makes things really interesting, is what Damon does next.  We watch as he takes a beat to ponder his relationship with Elena.  Instantly, he comes to the conclusion that a friendship with Elena would be far better than no relationship at all.  He nods sadly, but with a deep understanding and respect for Elena’s strength, as she goes to talk to Jeremy.  And don’t even get me started on that “Eye Thing.”

4) Damon tries to compel Elena to kiss him / gets slapped in the face

Episode: “Friday Night Bites:  – 1 x 3

Setting the scene: Damon has basically been compelling Elena’s friend Caroline to be his blood whore throughout the entire episode.  But Caroline has started to bore and annoy Damon, so he sets his sights on greener pastures, Elena’s.  Never one to go about things the “hard way,” Damon corners Elena, alone in the parking lot, during a high school football game.  He plans to compel her to be his love slave, just as he has done with Caroline.  Little does he know that Stefan has armed her with a vervain necklace, rendering her impervious to all mind control . . .

Potent quotables:

DAMON:  “You’re right, I do have other intentions.  But so do you . . . I see them.  You want me . . . I get to you.  You find yourself drawn to me.  You think about me, even when you don’t want to think about me.  I bet you’ve even dreamed about me .  . . (Damon’s eyes glow green, with the power of compulsion behind them).  And right now, you want to kiss me.”

And later . . .

ELENA:  “I am NOT Katherine!”

Why it made the list: The acting in this scene between Ian Somerhalder (Damon) and Nina Dobrev (Elena) was positively brilliant.  For starters, the sexual tension between these two is undeniable  — even though, at this point, Elena is trying desperately to deny it, and Damon is trying to force it, for his own personal gain.  When Damon first makes his speech about how “hot for him” Elena is, we, as viewers, know that a lot of what he is saying true.  Elena DOES feel drawn to Damon.  She DOES think about him, even when she doesn’t want to.   And she HAS dreamed about him.

But what’s really interesting is to watch the scene from Elena’s perspective.  That dreamy, faraway, look in her eye.  The way she keeps leaning closer and closer to him, as he speaks, unable to break eye contact.  The first time I saw the scene, I wondered, for a moment, whether Damon had SUCCEEDED in compelling Elena to want to kiss him, in spite of the fact that she was wearing vervain. 

Then I wondered whether Elena knew what Damon was trying to do.  Based on that theory, she was  just pretending to fall under his spell, only to catch him off guard, when she went in for the slap later.  But here’s the thing:  at this point, Elena doesn’t KNOW that Stefan and Damon are vampires.  (Notice how Elena didn’t catch on to Damon’s ironic intimation, that he was MUCH older than Caroline.)  So, she has no idea, they are capable of mind control.  So, Elena’s seemingly lovestruck initial reaction to Damon’s words?  It was REAL!

3) Damon and Elena do the “Mating Dance”

Episode: “Miss Mystic Falls” – 1 X 19

Setting the Scene: Elena has unwillingly agreed to take part in the Miss Mystic Falls pageant.  Stefan has agreed to be her escort.  But on the day of the pageant, Stefan mysteriously disappears.  (Turns out he’s gone all blood lusty, and has set out to eliminate Elena’s competition, by eating it.)  Unbeknownst to Elena, Damon has stepped in to fill Stefan’s shoes, and, subsequently, save the day.

Potent quotables:

USELESS AUNT JENNA:   “What is she doing with Damon?”

ALARIC:  “I have NO IDEA!”

Why it made the list:  Like the earlier referenced scene, where Damon watched Elena sleep, this scene is nearly silent, save for the music to which the contestants dance.  I love the first part of the scene, where Elena has her “Oh so Teen Cliched” Staircase Moment, and we see Damon’s eyes light up with love and sexual desire, as he sees her in that blue dress for the first time.

You can see the changes that take place in the couple, as the dance progresses.  When it first starts, the two are wary of one another, stiff and business like.  But then the music starts to take over.  Smiles form on their faces.  They are actually enjoying THIS! 

Damon’s a surprisingly good dancer (much better than his younger brother).  The first part of the dance, during which the partners can’t touch, is a mating ritual in every sense of the world.  Damon and Elena circle one another like predator and prey.

But things really heat up when they are finally able to grab hold of one another.  He grasps her body firmly, in a manner that is strong and protective.  They both get a bit lost in the moment, wanting to move in closer, but unable to do so, based on the regimented nature of the dance.  When the music stops, and the pair are forced to break from one another, they both seem a bit jarred by the intense emotions this experience has brought to the surface.

2) Damon kisses Elena Katherine

Episode: “Founder’s Day” – 1 x 22 (Season 1 Finale)

Setting the scene: At the Founder’s Day Carnival, Bonnie, at Elena’s behest, used her magic to rescue Damon from death by fire.  Filled with gratitude, Damon goes to Elena’s house to set things right with Elena’s brother, Jeremy, by explaining to him, what truly happened with Vampire Vicki.  As he leaves the house, he runs into who he THINKS is Elena.  (It isn’t . . .)

Potent quotables:

DAMON:  “I’m not a hero, Elena.  I don’t do good.  It’s not in my nature.”

KATHERINE (as Elena):  “Maybe it is.”

And later . . .

DAMON:  “She did it for you [saved me], which means that, somewhere along the way, you decided that I was worth saving.  And I wanted to thank you for that.”

KATHERINE (as Elena):  “You’re welcome.”

Why it made the list: At first blush, it may seem like sacrilege to put a scene that didn’t even INCLUDE Elena, in a list of the “Top Ten Best Damon and Elena” scenes.  But the fact remains, that, from Damon’s perspective, this WAS Elena, to whom he had bared his soul, and with whom, after an entire season of trying and failing, he had finally shared a kiss.  All this time, us fans always assumed that Damon did “bad things” simply because he wanted to.  Now, we realize, that he did them, because he thought himself to be completely incapable of goodness.  He is confused by, and uncomfortable with, his growing humanity, but at the same time, excited by it.

And Damon is excited by Elena, who for the first time, seems truly open to his advances.  He kisses her tentatively at first.  And then, when she doesn’t pull away, really lets himself get carried away in the moment.  His hands cup her face, his fingers run through her hair.  All thoughts of this awful day, escape from his head, and all that is left is love and passion.

In hindsight, we can see that “Elena” was different — that she seemed colder and more aloof, then she had in previous scenes.  A few cocked eyebrows and vague responses here and there, betray Katherine’s lack of knowledge, as to what has been going on in Mystic Falls this season.  She notices the change in Damon immediately, and is bit intrigued by it, especially since, all this time, she thought SHE was the only woman who held any power over him.  And when they finally kiss, Katherine shows none of the extreme guilt the ever-faithful Elena would experience had she just made the decision to cheat on her vampire boyfriend.

And it’s this complexity, that makes the scene so compulsively watchable . . .

And finally . . . (drumroll please)

1) Damon returns Elena’s necklace

Episode: “Fool Me Once” – 1X14

Setting the scene: Having recently learned that Stefan and Elena have stolen the spellbook that he needs to free his love Katherine from the tomb, Damon feels hurt and betrayed.  After all, the couple had promised to help him get Katherine back, and Elena had given Damon his word that their intentions were genuine.  Later, Elena comes to visit an uncharacteristically broody Damon at his home, waving the metaphorical “white flag” and carrying the proverbial “olive branch.”

Potent quotables:

ELENA:  “I was protecting the people I love, Damon.  But so were you, in your own twisted way.  As hard as it is to figure, we are all on the same side, after the same thing.”

DAMON:  “Fool me once, shame on you.”

And later . . .

ELENA:  “You and I, we have something.  An understanding.  And I know my betrayal hurt you — different than it was with Stefan.  But I promise you, I will help you get Katherine back.

And still later . . .

DAMON:  I didn’t compel you in Atlanta, because we were having fun.  I wanted it to be real.  I’m trusting you.   Don’t make me regret it.

Why it TOPPED the list: This scene contains everything we LOVE about Damon and Elena, all rolled up into one beautiful and sexy package:  the witty banter, the silent looks filled with meaning, the complex innuendos, the invasion of personal space, gentle caresses, and an admission, on both Damon’s and Elena’s parts, that their relationship is special.  It travels far beyond the expected boundaries of friendship.  The episode, begins with a betrayal of trust, and concludes with the ultimate exchange of trust.  Elena, who has always secretly worried that Damon has been trying to compel her (how else could she explain her strong romantic feelings for him), really puts herself out there for Damon.

By taking off the vervain necklace that protects her from mind control, Elena is exposing herself completely to Damon.  She might as well be standing naked before him.  And Damon, who wonders whether he will ever be able to trust Elena again, has the perfect opportunity to exert ultimate power over her.  And just like in Atlanta, he refuses to take that opportunity.  He will not take advantage of Elena in that way.  When Damon closes in on Elena, and reaches behind her to take the necklace, she is frightened and a bit aroused.  All of this is evident, when, to her surprise, Damon gently clasps the necklace back around her neck.  

A gentle brush of Damon’s fingers across Elena’s throat is enough to send her eyes rolling back in her head in pure ecstacy.  But this scene isn’t just about sex or power.  It is about love, friendship, understanding, and a willingness to let someone see you at your most vulnerable.  And THAT is why this scene made Number One on my list . . .

Season 2 of the Vampire Diaries premieres Thursday, September 9th at 8 p.m. on The CW, and we all know what THAT means — more juicy Damon and Elena scenes to gush over and explore.  I for one, CAN’T WAIT!  Can YOU?

Neither can HE! 😉

[www.juliekushner.com]

 

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