Welcome back to Storybrooke, folks! It’s a magical, mystical land where characters leave, die, and return from the dead, age (or don’t) whenever they feel like . . . a place from which Continuity and Logic escaped together on a romantic vacation about 3.5 seasons ago, and haven’t been seen since.
But that’s OK, because it’s also a land that allows us to see a fat old unwashed version of Captain Hook fight an occasionally wooden, occasionally young, occasionally absent Pinocchio, in front of a massively large tree that can magically move from a forest to inside a workshop, whenever Plot requires it to do so.
Let’s jump right back in, shall we?
It’s a Hard Knock Life for Swan
It’s winter in the early 90’s. So, it makes sense that young Emma conveniently finds herself homeless on what appears to be the set of the Broadway musical Rent. Emma is cold, so she’s burning pages of a rather antique, rare, and expensive-looking story book for kindling. After all, rare and expensive storybooks are super prevalent on the “mean” streets of Minneapolis . . . almost as prevalent as crack pipes and hypodermic needles.
(But wait, if she burns a book that’s her only source of income, how will she pay her rent? This year’s rent? Next year’s rent? RENT! RENT! RENT! RENT! REEEEEEEENT! Sorry . . . I got a bit carried away there, for a moment.)
Anywhoo, an age inappropriate older gentleman is watching Emma. He approaches her, and starts making small talk about the fairytales in the book she’s burning, like any seasoned pederast would do. Emma openly admits to this creeper that she has no family, and no one would be looking for her, were she to suddenly go missing. (EMMA NO! What kind of fairytale character-turned-sassy-self-aware-street-urchin are you? Have you no sense of self-preservation!)
But just when you are thinking that this story is either about to take a very dark turn, or Chris Hansen from To Catch a Predator, is going to pop out of the trash can and launch a citizen’s arrest, you remember that this is Once Upon a Time, when the dumb actions of characters only have real consequences when The Plot desires it.
So, the creepy-maybe Pederast (who ends up being a young version of Pinocchio?) convinces Emma to turn herself in to child services . . . but only after he inspires her with a recounting of his favorite fairytale, The Ugly Duckling, a tale of redemptive transformation that would be doomed to become the theme of superficial high school rom com films for decades to come.
“What’s your last name?” Child Services Lady asks Emma pointedly at the end of this flashback.
“Swan,” replies the girl, with the self-assuredness to know that she’s going to look like actress Jennifer Morrison in about twenty years.
Tree to Be, You and Me
Meanwhile, over in present day Alt World, a not-so-dead, not-aged-a-day, possible vampire or zombie, Robin Hood has stolen Regina’s and Emma’s jewels. And the shock of seeing her dearly departed love back in the flesh caused Regina, and consequently Emma, to miss their chance to jump into the portal back to Storybrooke, and stand around staring at one another for three months, while the show went on hiatus.
Fortunately, Emma sees a tree (because they are in a forest, duh!). And this reminds her that, back in Season 1, her baby self and Pinocchio were able to travel inside a tree-turned-into-a-wardrobe to another universe. But who will build the wardrobe? Why Pinocchio himself, of course!
Emma and Regina visit Emma’s real-world friend, Pinocchio, who, in Alt World, is a “humble” puppeteer who makes clones of himself for a living. Emma quickly fills Pinocchio in on this season’s ridiculous plot, and Pinocchio is instantly totally cool with it, because this hour-long tale (45 minutes with commercials) doesn’t allot him any time for reasonable skepticism. Puppet Man agrees to build a wardrobe that will get Emma and Regina back to Storybrooke.
Except . . . wait, where’s Regina? It appears that in the literally two seconds it took Emma to explain to Pinnochio the plot of Season 6 of Once Upon a Time, Regina escaped, but not before penning to Emma a two-page missive on why she was leaving. (Evil Queens write fast!) Apparently, Regina wants to take another ride on the Robin Hood train, zombie or no zombie, before she leaves Alt World for good. (I hope, for her sake, the sex lasts longer than the letter-writing did.)
“I never wear pants for this precise reason. ‘Always be prepared.’ That’s my motto.”
Little Orphan Angsty
Meanwhile, back in Real World, Prince Charming is super cranky, because he hasn’t slept in days. (If you recall, he and Snow White are still under that sleeping curse thing where only one of them gets to sleep at a time.) He’s dead set on killing the Hooded Man who is fated to “murder” Emma Swan during an improbably street duel at the end of the season. The same Hooded Man who just so happens to be the adult version of Rumple’s and Belle’s baby-just-last-week boy Gideon.
Both Belle and Rumple try to reason with their bratty man child, who apparently turned 28-years old in three months (I’ve heard of rapid aging on TV shows, but this is ridiculous!). They gamely explain to him that murdering the lead of a series at approximately the same time it’s been earmarked for likely cancellation, before he’s had any screen time, would not be the savviest career move for him. Also, that killing is bad and stuff.
But Gideon, who has been raised by the Evil Black Fairy for either three months or 28-years, we still aren’t sure, will not hear it. He is convinced that murdering the Savior will be the only thing that allows him to become a Savior himself, thereby proving to his Evil Stepmother that he is not evil . . . by doing something that is really, really evil.
Yeah, I don’t get it either.
Upon failing to convince her son to spare Emma’s life, Belle approaches Prince Charming to reveal the identity of Emma’s would-be killer. “Promise me you won’t murder my son, who is about my age, and whom I didn’t raise . . . even if he murders your daughter, who is about your age, and whom you didn’t raise either?” Belle pleads.
Prince Charming reluctantly promises not to kill Belle’s kid, Mr. Whiny McEmo Pants, but you just know he’s got his fingers crossed behind his back when he says it. So, all bets are off.
Back in Alt World, Regina tries to put the movies on vampire or zombie Robin Hood, by cornering him in a bar, and asking him whether he has a happy life, despite the fact that he’s clearly not getting laid regularly. (Hint, hint, wink, wink). Through their conversation, we learn that Alt World vampire or zombie Robin Hood is a swinging single, who doesn’t steal from the rich to give to the poor, like his alter ego, rather, he steals from the rich to give to himself.
This is clearly not a deal breaker to Regina, who, after all, is a serial killer. (Nobody’s perfect?) But before she can take vampire or zombie Robin to pound town, the pair get arrested by the Sheriff of Nottingham. (Can vampire/zombies get blue balls, I wonder?) The good news is that Regina’s and Robin’s arrest is short-lived, as they are promptly rescued by Alt World Rumplestiltskin, who Regina had helped break out of prison earlier in the season. The bad news is that in Alt World Regina, as the Evil Queen murdered Belle.
So, Rumple locks both Robin and Regina in a tower, where he plans to murder them both.
But then Robin breaks him and Regina out of the tower, because, you know, breaking and entering is kind of “his thing.”
(They are in jail. They are out of jail. They are back in jail. They are back out again. They are alive. They are dead. They are good. They are evil. Sometimes watching this show gives me whiplash.)
Meanwhile, elsewhere in Alt World, Pinocchio is trying to carve a wardrobe out of a magical tree, when a fat old drunk arrives to kidnap Emma.
Holy crap! It’s Captain Hook! Alt World has not been kind to you, my friend! I would definitely recommend staying home from the high school reunion.
Emma is easily able to disarm her erstwhile boyfriend (who, let’s face it, even when he’s good looking, slim, and half-sober, has never exactly been the sharpest hook in the bait box), but in doing so, breaks Pinocchio’s magic make-a-tree-into-a-wardrobe-time-jumping-portal chisel.
How will Emma and Regina get home now? You are going to have to wait at least a commercial break to find out!
Death versus Savior: Round 1
Ultimately, Emma is able to use The Ugly Duckling’s tale about “believing in yourself” to convince Pinocchio that, gosh-darn it, he can create a wardrobe with a magic make-a-tree-into-a-wardrobe-time-jumping-portal chisel, even if that magic-make-a-tree-into-a-wardrobe-time-jumping-portal chisel has been broken in half by Captain Hook’s fat ass!
(Sidenote: Is that what The Ugly Duckling was about, “believing in yourself”? Because I don’t think that was what the fairytale was about . . . at all! I thought it was about growing out of your “awkward phase.” It’s easy to “believe in yourself” when you are a hot swan, who used to be a pubescent duckling.)
In the very next scene, the massively large tree has been instantaneously turned into a beautiful wardrobe and transplanted to Pinocchio’s workshop, because apparently, magic chisels can literally move mountains. Now, if you recall, from Season 1, a Magical Wardrobe can only fit two people. This was why Snow, Charming and Emma couldn’t all travel to another realm together, thus setting the stage for the events that launched the series.
In present day, this would mean that only Emma and Regina could travel back to Storybrooke and Vampire or Zombie Robin Hood would have to remain behind. Fortunately, as I mentioned, Continuity and Logic left this series long ago, and are probably sunning themselves on a remote island off the coast of Mexico by now, while raising their two kids, Credibility and Character Development. And, because of this, Regina invites Vampire or Zombie Robin Hood to join her and Emma back in Real World, and he instantly agrees. Why? Because he’s a dude, and dudes will generally do anything for sex . . . even if that sex happens to be with a deranged serial killer.
Back in Storybrooke Emma confronts Gideon her would be murderer, and has a duel with him. But it’s not The Duel, because she’s wearing a winter jacket, and the Emma is The Duel is just wearing a white tank top. (Emma is destined to die in better weather, apparently.) Gideon loses this duel, but disappears before Emma can finish him off.
Then, Gideon heads up to the clock tower and breaks it, because that’s what bratty man children do, when they don’t get their way, and fail at murdering the lead character in the series, whose very existence on that series keeps them employed. They break things.
And that’s all that happened this week on Once. Next week, we get to watch Prince Charming beat the crap out of Captain Hook. That should be fun . . .
The Road to Hell is paved with good intentions . . . also with these schmucks.
The moment we’ve been waiting for all season has finally arrived: a Showdown between all the World’s Biggest Assholes and Emma Swan, with her old lady bun and effed-up eyebrows! It’s an epic battle of Good versus Evil . . . or, rather, Evil versus Slightly Less Evil? But first, we have to learn about Captain Hook’s daddy issues.
Let’s review, shall we?
Papa Don’t Preach . . . or Age
It should be no surprise to anyone who knows anything at all about genetics that Hook’s dad is kind of hot . . . also that he’s kind of a dick. From a flashback, we learn that, on the night of a big storm, Captain Hook’s pop (Guyliner Senior) told Baby Guyliner to be courageous and a good man. He said this literally minutes before abandoning his and his brother’s ass in the middle of the night, and selling Baby Guyliner and Baby Guyliner’s Brother into slavery, basically.
“Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful, or because I’m a terrible person, for that matter. But, by all means, feel free to hate me because I have stupid hair.”
Now, I know we shouldn’t give Captain Hook a free pass on the whole “mass murderer, who rapes and pillages on the regular” thing, just because his dad was kind of a douchebag to him growing up. But you have to admit, as far as fairytale characters’ sh*tty upbringings go, Hook’s kind of ranks up there as one of the worst . . . right behind the guy who hated his parents so much, he decided to turn into a creepy insect, rather than hang out with them . . .
Also, Hook is sexy. And we give all kinds of free passes to sexy people in this world because of hormones. Damn those pesky hormones!
Sometime later Evil Queen Regina picks up a now adult Hook, in her sexy black carriage, and hits on him SO HARD! (Seriously, Regina, you may want to play it a little cooler, in the future. Guys don’t like it when girls seem too desperate.) As it turns out, the Queen wants to hire Hook to kill her mother, but only if Hook can prove he’s a big enough dick to get the job done.
“Major Dick, at your service!”
“Come into my dark carriage and show me your big . . . I mean, what a big dick you are,” Regina insists, as Hook gamely follows her into the Carriage of Lust.
So, of course, at this point in the episode, I’m getting very excited because I’m thinking. “OMG! They are totally going to bone! Regina and Captain Hook are going to have Evil Angry Carriage Hate Sex! This is going to be the hottest thing ever.”
“I wouldn’t have preempted the episode, if I new there was a chance there would be hot sex in it.”
Then, I remember that this is 8 p.m. on ABC (actually slightly after 8 p.m., thanks to Obama and some scary terrorists), and my excitement wilts like that flower Belle always used to stare at to see if Rumpelstiltskin was still in a coma, or had finally croaked.
In actuality, Regina wants Hook to kill HIS dad, who, thanks to a “sleeping curse,” (and the fact that male actors of above average attractiveness, by TV law, cannot just appear in one scene of a television episode) hasn’t aged a day since he sold his sons into slavery to some old guy.
“Hi dad! Thank you for giving me sexy genes, but no thank you for giving me douchebag genes. Also, no thank you for making me grow up as a slave to someone old and unattractive. Mind if I murder you?” Hook asks his father.
“I wouldn’t mind all that much, actually,” replies Guyliner Senior, “I mean, I’m already like a 1,000 years old, so I kind of feel like I should give some other hot people a chance to do the whole living thing. Also, I’m a good person now, because of love and stuff.”
“Because you loved my mother?” Hook inquires.
“No, of course not. I hated that b*tch,” explains Guyliner Senior. “I’m talking about some other random lady, whose name I never mention, who is conveniently deceased . . . also my new son, who I love more than you, and who I named after your dead brother, who P.S. I also loved more than you.”
“OK, well, you’ll be happy to know that, your painful lack of love for me notwithstanding, I’ve decided not to kill you,” Hook offers magnanimously. “I just have to pretend I killed you, so that Regina will know I have a big enough dick . . . I mean . . . that I am a big enough dick to murder her mother. So, you have to leave town tomorrow. I’ll get you transit papers.”
“Can you also get them for the son I love more than you?” Guyliner Senior inquires, because he’s the kind of guy who has to look a gift horse in the mouth.
“That’s kind of pushing it, but OK,” Hook allows.
That night, Hook goes to give Guyliner Senior and Guyliner Senior’s son, who Guyliner Senior loves more than Hook, transit papers, when he overhears Guyliner Senior giving Son He Loves More the exact same speech he gave Baby Guyliner at the beginning of the episode about being a good person and all that jazz.
“I’ve changed my mind. I’ve decided that I’m going to kill you, because you have limited oratory skills, and are the human equivalent of a bad television rerun, basically. Seriously, who has been on earth for 1,000 years, and can’t come up with at least two different speeches to say to his various offspring? You don’t deserve to live.”
“Why? Because you believe that my giving the same speech indicates that I’m still the same douchebag I was at the beginning of the episode, and haven’t really changed at all, despite my telling you that I have?” Guyliner Senior asks.
“No! Because you are clearly a moron. And all morons must die,” answers Hook, before stabbing his dad to death, thereby ensuring that Son He Loved More will also have a very good excuse to grow up to become a Super Big Dick, and not in a good way, either.
The Mosquito Bites of Doom
Back in Storybrooke, all the Dark Ones from the Beginning of Time a.k.a. The Asshole Brigade, run around town and very efficiently touch all the main characters of the show (who aren’t Emma, Belle and Baby Neal) and give them what appears to be either a really gnarly mosquito bite / hickey on each of their arms.
“That mosquito bite/ hickey thing we have on our arms means we are all going to Hell,” insists Rumpel.
“That seems a bit dramatic, don’t you think?” Snow inquires. “The last time I had a mosquito bite I just went to the medicine cabinet and got out the Benadryl.”
“And the last time I got a hickey on my arm, it was because Snow drank too much red wine at dinner and mistook it for my neck,” adds Prince Charming.
“I can’t help it if you have thick wrists . . .”
“These aren’t just any mosquito bites / hickeys,” insists Rumpel. “They are mosquito bites / hickeys of doom!”
“Hey, if we are all in Hell together, anyway, won’t everything pretty much be exactly the same as it is now, except the parties will be way less lame?” Henry asks.
“Pretty much,” offers Rumpel. “But it’s the season finale, so the stakes need to be higher, and we all need to act like we’re going to die, rather than just temporarily relocate to a new land, like we do every season.”
Snow and Co. look in some picture books for about five seconds to see if there is anything in there about “Not going to Hell.”
When they don’t find anything relevant, they decide to do what most of us would do, if we were told we had to take a permanent vacation to Hell. They stuff their faces (because everyone knows that dead people don’t get fat), and stare lovingly at one another to the tune of cheesy music (because there is no cheesy music in Hell, which really sucks for people like Snow and Henry, who think cheesy music is the bees’ knees).
Meanwhile, Zelena is threatening to make her Rape Baby with Robin Hood evil, while Regina and Robin are in Hell, so Regina decides to magic that witch back to Oz, something she should have done about ten episodes ago.
“I’ll be back,” threatens Zelena, as she floats away.
Sure you will, Zelena. Because Once recycles villains and plot lines the way I recycle my favorite pair of underwear (after it’s been washed, of course).
In a world where TV Viewers are defined, not only by the shows that they watch, but by the couples they ship while they are watching them, “Amazing Race”-type plotlines, like the one found in this week’s TVD episode, are not only encouraged, they are inevitable! Just like with Real People, competition brings about both the best and the worst attributes of our characters. It highlights their strengths, exposes their weaknesses, and awakens their basest instincts.
Who will win the Race for the Vampire Cure? Who will defeat their adversaries in a Battle to the Death? And who will end up sucking . . . blood? Only time will tell, Fangbangers. Time . . . and this recap, of course!
[Special thanks to Andre, whose snark and awesome screencaps know no bounds!]
Team Hunky Arms and Human Teddy Bear
When we last left the World’s Cutest Ambiguously Gay Duo, Mattykins and Jer Bear, they were in a bar, surrounded by freshly turned newbie vamps.
Silly Matt! Don’t you realize that wearing a varsity jacket to a bar not only tells everyone you are underage, it also tells them you are “not yet legal?”
Jer Bear, aside from occasionally erupting into a murderous rage against his own sister, is still, for all intents and purposes, a “Good Guy.” So, of course, he balks at the idea of killing “innocents.”
This makes Klaus mad!
And when Klaus gets mad, everyone suffers . . . especially Mattykins, who the newbie vamps have just been compelled to believe is a tender juicy steak with eyes, ripe for the chewing.
Run Matt, Run! The Sexy Cabin is waiting!
The “Run Through The Forest” sequence at the beginning of this episode has a fun sort of video game quality to it, in which each of our resident “heroes” takes turns rescuing Damsel in Distress Mattykins from a nameless, faceless, Vampire Zombie Type.
“I feel so used!”
First Jeremy does his “Cross-Bow” thing. Then, Damon does his “Heart Tugging” thing . . .
Then, Elena pops up out of literally nowhere, and does . . . well, whatever it is she does . . .
“Gee thanks, ex-girlfriend! As if the past five minutes haven’t emasculated me enough!”
The video game ends and the sex games begin with Mattykins, Elena and JerBear returning safely to Sexy Cabin. There, the only monsters they will have to battle are the ones they invite inside . . . provided they don’t screw up, and spring for pizza again . . .
Team Hunky Arms and Sexy Eyes
“Our plans are lame, but our hotness makes up for it.”
Back inside Sexy Cabin, Jeremy has regrettably come to the conclusion that, cuddly though he may be, Human Teddy Bear Mattykins is more of a liability than an asset in the Race for the Cure. It’s time to trade him in for an “Older, More Vintage” model . . .
Elena is not entirely cool with this . . . until Damon tells her that she is cool with it. Then, she decides it’s a Great Idea!
So, Damon and Elena have sex!
(Actually, they don’t. But I was annoyed by the lack of Delena in this episode, particularly after their triumphant “I Love You” exchange, last week. And I decided to use a little poetic license. So, sue me!)
Sprawled out on her ex-boyfriend’s bed, and waiting for him to emerge from the shower in all his shirtless, muscle-y, glory, Rebekah probably wishes she was reading Fifty Shades of Grey or Gone Girl, or any other book about dysfunctional relationships that isn’tStefan’s Mopey Diary. Yet, she gallantly endures the tedium of Stefan’s writing. Because, when it comes to the Race for the Cure, knowing thy teammate is almost as important as knowing thyself. And besides . . .
Without a vampire hunter or a witch on their side, Rebekah and Stefan decide that their key to winning the Race for the Cure is finding Silas’ headstone. You know, because hunks of cement beat live human beings any day, and twice on Sundays.
“Go Team Stebekah!”
From the get-go, there’s a lot of sexual tension between these two. They are both really close talkers, and enjoy invading each other’s personal space.
I hate to say it, but I think, right now, Kol is the only one on this show with any good sense. I mean, come on . . . “raising the dead,” “curing immortality,” “more powerful than an Original Vampire?” It’s SOOO obvious this Silas guy is being set up as the show’s Next Big Bad, just in time for Klaus to get his spinoff. So why does the entire Scooby Gang seem intent on giving this guy a wakeup call?
(Also, I’m pretty sure Professor Shane is actually a disembodied Silas, whose working to get back into his own body, to re-activate his dormant powers. But that’s neither here nor there . . .)
Anywhoo, Team Hunky Arms and Sexy Eyes head back to the bar to pick up chicks continue their “hunting expedition.”
Hunting Rule 101: When trying to catch your prey by surprise, it’s probably a bad idea to stand under a BIG BRIGHT LAMP, while carrying a HUGE CROSSBOW.
So, this bar . . . it’s not exactly the kind of place you want to toss back a few beers, and sway drunkenly to “Sweet Child of Mine.” For one thing, check out the floor . . .
“Something’s wrong,” remarks Damon, sagely.
Gee! Ya think?
You know what I like to do, when I go to a bar, and the floor looks like that?
Yeah . . . I think that’s probably the normal response. Certainly not, “Let’s go hang out in the freezer,” which is exactly what Jeremy and Damon ended up doing . . .
This is what happens to people who hang out in the freezers of bars with bloody floors . . .
“Chill out, guys! Get it . . . chill? Because we’re in a freezer. Whatever! Socrates and Jesus both thought that joke was hilarious! You millennials have no sense of humor!”
In the freezer, Damon and Jer Bear find That Other Lost Original Who Isn’t Elijah . . .
Wanna get a man to confess to the mass murder of twelve townspeople? Put him in the room with a Really Pissed Off Witch! Bonnie went all Dark Willow on Professor Shane’s ass in the Mystic Falls interrogation room, this week.
And it actually gave me a great idea for a TV show. Think about it. What are the two most popular kinds of television dramas out there today? Police procedurals and Supernatural shows. So, why not combine those two for a show about a witch who uses dark magic to force confessions out of serial killers? Not bad, right?
Except, was I the only one who was a bit disappointed that Bonnie’s first Descent into Evil featured her doing nothing more than setting a small trash can fire, and giving Professor Shane would looked like a Really Bad Case of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
Seriously? Dark Willow would have blasted Professor Dimbulb’s ass to the next century for saying all the crap he was saying about Bonnie’s Grams!
The Bennett witch just gave him a glorified paper cut . . .
“Dammit Bonnie! Now I’ll never be a hand model!”
And yet, I think this scene was important because it foreshadowed two future plotlines: (1) Bonnie’s inevitable descent into Dark Willow 2: The Straight-to-Video Version “Bad Witch” territory; and (2) her developing her own motives for getting the cure, based upon a desire to bring her grandmother back from the dead.
Team Klaus and Elena?
While Caroline was out “shopping,” or whatever the f&*k she was doing throughout this episode . . .
I never said she was, Tyler. Thou doth protest too much?
. . . Matt had the unlucky job of being the Obligatory Delena Doubter of the Hour. There he was, in Elena’s ear, telling our heroine that her boyfriend is BAAAAAAD news . . .
“Payback’s a b*tch.”
We interrupt this “scintillating conversation” for an Important Phone Call . . .
It’s Jeremy! Kol has KIDNAPPED DAMON!
Desperate times call for desperate measures. And Elena actually ends up going to Klaus for help, which is weird on so many levels . . .
“Hey Elena! Come sit on Santa Klaus’ lap, and tell him how much you want the Vampire Cure for Christmas.”
Interestingly enough, Klaus and Elena are actually on the same side, in this instance. Though they each have their own reasons, these two BOTH want the cure, and they BOTH want to keep Jeremy Gilbert alive and safe . . . at least for the time being. So, Klaus agrees to call in a “brotherly favor” on Elena’s behalf . . .
“Oh, the usual . . . just torturing and manipulating people for my own personal gain.”
“No sh*t! Me too!”
It’s a real testament to Klaus’ stupidity arrogance that he seems to truly believe that he can get Kol to STOP trying to murder Jeremy, just because he asked nicely.
Kol gives Klaus his “word” that he won’t touch Jeremy Gilbert. And he does keep his promise . . . by compelling Damon to kill Jeremy for him . . .
More Whisper Talking and Eye F*&ks for these two, as they scope out Professor Nerdy Pants’ office for Silas’ headstone.
Rebekah and Stefan then enter into that age old question that teen dramas cope with, time and time again. Is no frills sex possible, on a consistent basis? One night stands are one thing. But can you repeatedly bone the same individual, without “catching the dreaded feelings” for that person?
Stefan and Rebekah seem primed to test that theory, right there on Professor Needle Weiner’s desk. But then, Some Random Guy comes and grabs Silas’ headstone, which, conveniently, is precisely what Team Lonely Hearts had broken in to find!
The question is, who sent this guy, and what team is HE ON? Unfortunately, Some Random Guy would rather chew off his own tongue, and kill himself than let you find out . . .
This is usually how I feel on Sunday nights . . .
Team Zombie Damon?
“Must . . . Kill . . . Jer Bear . . .”
“But he’s SO CUTE . . . and has really nice arm muscles.”
“Must . . . kill . . . him . . . anyway.”
I always find the concept of vampire compulsion fascinating. You see, unlike humans, vampires KNOW they are being compelled. So, there’s this interesting dichotomy between what they WANT to be doing, and what they are ACTUALLY doing. The moment Damon hunts down Jeremy at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, he realizes that Kol has compelled him to murder Jeremy. And yet a part of him WANTS to obey, while the other part is WARNING Jeremy to run away from him, and / or shoot him in the heart. Damon’s babbling on about this like a Crazy Person, as he chases the vampire hunter through that old underground railroad place where Tyler used to do his “Werewolf Transformation Thing.”
It’s a TOTAL Dr. Jekyll / Mr. Hyde conundrum!
Jeremy ends up shooting Damon in the BRAIN, instead of the heart, which only places a temporary bandaid on the problem. (I guess he’s not really a zombie, after all!)
Then, Elena pops up to tell Damon he should fight the compulsion to kill Jeremy because he loooooves Elena so much. “It worked for Stefan,” she helpfully implies . . .
Here’s some helpful advice for you, Elena. Please don’t be one of those girls who always talks about your Old Boyfriend with your New One. Guys hate that! How would YOU feel, if Damon started comparing sex with you to the sex he’s had with the 20,000 other women he’s laid before you?
Also, let’s not compare apples to oranges here. Stefan was able to fight the compulsion to EAT ELENA. That’s very different from fighting a compulsion to EAT ELENA’S BROTHER. Stefan loved Elena. Damon loves Elena. Damon . . . likes Jeremy very much. Hence, these are two totally different situations. Comprende?
Speaking of Stefan, Elena ends up calling him for help. And though he first balks at the idea, Baby Salvatore conveniently arrives in the “forest” just in time to stop the bullet Jeremy shoots toward Damon’s heart AND break his brother’s neck, thereby putting him out of commission long enough for Elena and Jer Bear to make a quick escape.
Since Damon will remain compelled to kill Jeremy, until Kol is either daggered or permanently killed, Stefan ends up draining Damon of blood and locking him in that convenient cage in La Casa de Rich and Awesome, where Stefan and Damon always lock each other when one or the other of them is “being bad.”
This seems to happen at least once or twice per season . . .
There still remains the risk that Elena might free Damon, as a result of the sire bond. And Damon will inadvertently kill Jeremy. So, in a sense, Stefan is protecting Elena and Damon from themselves. But that doesn’t mean he’s happy about it.
And Elena, well . . . sometimes, she just doesn’t know when to SHUT UP . . .
She has to go nag Stefan about palling around with his ex, Rebekah, when, really, she should be thrilled that he’s FINALLY moving on, like she already has. She lectures Stefan about his bad attitude . . .
And yeah, we can all see where she’s coming from. Stefan has been acting like a bit of a douche this week . . Why does that make him more attractive to me? Clearly, I have issues.
But for Elena to say that Stefan’s behavior is “out of character” for him, is kind of out of line. After all, the guy is what, 160 some odd years old? And Elena has known him for . . . maybe two of those years? Elena never really knew Stefan as the Ripper, or the depressive, who spent years underground trying to kick his human blood drinking habit cold turkey. And most of all, Elena never knew Stefan as a human, in love with a girl named Katherine Petrova.
So, who is to say what’s “normal” and what isn’t for Stefan? He was in his right, telling her that this is how he looks when he isn’t in love with her . . . even if his words are OBVIOUS lies . . .
This is the “Everybody Loves Elena” show, after all . . .
But Stefan and Damon aren’t the only characters who are having a bad day. Rebekah has a confrontation with Kol, during which she almost daggers him, and HE almost STAKES HER . . . permanently. Ouch!
Though Klaus comes to his siblings rescue, his presence isn’t exactly comforting to Rebekah, especially, when that presence advocates the murder of her own brother . . .
OMG, Werebangers! We are officially one episode away from the end of the season! It seems like only yesterday that we watched Lydia take the Dirtiest Shower Ever, and we all made fun of Scott and his trademark Crab-Leg / Run-Waddle . . .
This week on Teen Wolf, Derek received some “Uncle-y” (Is that an actual word?) Advice, Allison proved that the Psycho Argent Gene might not have skipped a generation, after all, Stiles proved that he might actually be Batman (though, personally, the Spiderman analogy always made more sense to me), Isaac fondled an adorable puppy, and Scott spent the hour looking even more confused than usual . . .
So, strap on your helmet and brush up on your knowledge of the film Independence Day, because it’s time for another Teen Wolf-cap . . .
[As always, special thanks go out to my pal, Andre for his weekly dedication to Screencap Awesomeness! Andre, just so you know, I would totally beat people up on the lacrosse field, for you, if you asked nicely. ;)]
I hear lacrosse sticks are a good source of fiber.
One frequent criticism lodged at teen shows, in general, and teen supernatural shows, specifically, is that they tend to be purposefully blind to the long-term impact that repeated exposure to traumatic events would have on the average teen psyche.
Teen Wolf has managed to avoid this pitfall, with episodes like “Battlefield.” These episodes directly address how the events of the series are impacting the main characters’ lives, in a way that actually adds to, rather than detracts from, the action of the story.
I guess we have Cryptic Counselor Lady to thank for that . . .
The episode begins on an unusually somber note, with everyone’s favorite ambassador of Team Human, nervously gnawing on his lacrosse stick (Mmmm! Tasty!), as he describes to Cryptic Counselor Lady, in chilling detail, what the experience of drowning feels like . . . the way the water exerts pressure on the body . . . the way the body struggles to keep itself from filling with water . . . and the peaceful feeling that takes over right before death . . .
This doesn’t look so peaceful to me . . .
Woah, Stiles! Have you been chatting with Dead Creepy Camera Guy, lately? How do you know all this stuff about drowning? Did you look it up on Wikipedia? Morbid much? Whatever happened to teens who spent their free internet search time scouring for porn, like everyone else? 🙂
“So, basically WebMD says that little problem you’ve been having down there is totally normal for werewolves, who come back from the dead through weird hand-holding rituals.”
And yet, in a way, Stiles has experienced drowning, firsthand . . . though it’s drowning in the metaphorical sense, more than the literal one. Like a drowning man, Stiles is feeling pressure exerted on him from all angles. He feels responsible for his father’s sadness (But hey, at least thanks to all those dead cops, the dude got his job back!), Allison’s rage, Jackson’s and Lydia’s respective psychoses, and Scott’s confusion and loneliness. He wants to help the people he cares about, but feels that his humanity makes him incapable of doing so. He’s also pretty f*&kin’ freaked out that he might just end up getting eaten alive by a Big F*&kin’ Lizard Man . . .
Cryptic Counselor Lady, as it turns out, has a medical diagnosis for “pretty f*&kin freaked out.” It’s called Hyper Vigilant. (Take that, Freshman Psychology Class!) She also has some advice for Stiles, courtesy of Winston Churchill. “If you are going through Hell, keep going.”
Insightful? Yes, definitely. Inspirational? Oh, I don’t know. Personally, when I’m going through Hell, I prefer to stop and take a nap . . .
Either way, Dylan O’Brien and his puppy dog eyes absolutely KILLED this scene, adding an unusual amount of gravitas to a show about funny-faced werewolves, gorilla-looking Alphas, and Lizard People, who are afraid of their own reflections . . . The actor is just awe-inspiringly talented. And I for one, can’t wait for the time, when he’s off winning Oscars, and I get to brag to everyone I know, that I knew him back when he was on that little MTV show with the funny-faced werewolves, gorilla-loooking Alphas, and Lizard People, who are afraid of their own reflections . . .
Who’s with me on this one?
Cue the obligatory Scott Shower Scene in 3, 2 . . .
Lest we get too serious, too quickly, the episode then decides to dial up it’s camp factor to about 20 with a revisit to Naked Shower Scott. You remember Naked Shower Scott, right? We met him back in the pilot, and he’s been having regular cameos on the show ever since. After all, when you spend a good portion of your time running around the woods chasing squirrels, and running from lizard people, hygiene is VERY important . . .
Naked Shower Scott not campy enough for you? How about this doozy of an image?
“Just hangin’ out . . .”
Sadly, this is Mama McCall’s first date since Peter Hale . . .
That’s right, Werebangers! It appears the McCalls have unwittingly thrown themselves a private party, at which scaly green men, and wrinkly old men are the guests of honor. Poor Mama McCall! Not too long ago, she found out her son occasionally sports sideburns, a bad hairdo, and a pointy face that literally only a mother could love. Now, suddenly, she’s hanging out on her werewolf son’s ceiling, spooning with a murderous kanaima.
I guess, when it rains, it pours, right?
Grandpa Crazy Pants reminds Scott that this is what happens, when the latter doesn’t return his text messages . . . his mom starts hooking up with lizard people. Pops then goes on to explain to those confused by the events of last week’s episode, that his desire to avenge his daughter Wackjob Kate’s death, is what made him capable of forging the Kanaima Master connection.
I guess he’s right. But, then again, what character on this show DOESN’T have at least one death to avenge? Truth be told, Kanaima Jackson has so many options for a Master in Beacon Hills, he could star in his own reality dating show entitled: Can I be your b*tch?
Anyway, after Gerard and his b*tch exit stage left, a tearful Mama McCall begs Scott to do whatever Grandpa Crazy Pants wants him to do, i.e. provide Derek Hale’s head on a platter . . .
Clearly, Mama McCall has never seen the episode of Teen Wolf where Derek spent ten minutes doing push-ups and pull-ups to pop music . . .
Had she seen this, I’m quite certain she would have chosen differently. After all, a six-pack and great pects are a terrible thing to waste . . .
Baby, I’m howling for you . . .
Here’s a new couple idea for you: Boyd and Erica . . . the Absentee Werewolf and Tweedle Dumb Boobs.
We found love in a hairy place . . .
I’ll admit, I was skeptical at first. But eventually, they won me over . . . holding hands in the middle of the woods, like high school sweethearts, finishing each other’s sentences, calculating the percent chance of certain doom, when they find themselves surrounded by a seemingly large pack of wolves that isn’t there own. It’s a romantic comedy dream come true . . . minus the comedy, of course . . .
Love hurts . . .
And if these two crazy kid both wind-up surviving the season, which, under the circumstances, is highly unlikely, I think they just might make it as a couple . . .
After all, they did find love in a hopeless place. Stay strong, were-cubs! Help is on the way . . . eventually.
Who in their right mind would reject Derek Hale?
Scratch that, were-cubs. Help was on the way, until you bit the hand that fed you. So much for pack loyalty. One creepy lizard thing controlled by a werewolf-hating sociopath, and a pack of potentially angry wolves, is all it takes to send Erica and Boyd literally heading for the hills.
“Honestly, we’re just not that into you.“
“But I was on SEVENTH HEAVEN. Doesn’t that mean anything to you ingrates?”
And as bad as I felt for Derek about being double-dumped, I was actually a bit more concerned about Erica’s and Boyd’s parents. I mean, considering they were being referred to as “the runaways” throughout the entire hour, they HAD them, didn’t they? Perhaps, they assumed their sticking around would put their families in danger of becoming kanaima meat as well . . .
Upon hearing the bad news that, “it’s not you, it’s the kanaima,” a particularly sour grapes Derek warns his little cub-lings that once they start running scared, they will ALWAYS be running scared. I suspect Derek knows a thing or two about that from personal experience.
That, and he looks really hot when he runs . . .
No matter, because, as it turns out, Erica and Boyd don’t actually get to do much running at all . . .
Because Grandpa Argent clearly laces his fake suicide notes with crack and Cult Kool-Aid . . .
Honestly, I’m a bit confused about what exactly the “strategy” was that convinced an entire team of Argents, led by Allison and Papa Argent to drive down Erica and Boyd in a troop of ATVs. Forgive me, if I’m wrong, but I thought it was established last week that “Derek got the Death Sentence priority,” and the were-cubs were only a target, if they got in the way. Well, I hate to break it to you Argents, but Erica and Boyd, are SOOOO not getting in your way! In fact, they are saying, “Hey, Argents! You go ahead and kill that hunky piece of man-meat known as our were-dad. We sure as heck aren’t going to stop you!”
“Wake us, when our maker is dead . . .”
I mean, I guess their idea was to use Boyd and Erica to get to Derek, either through interrogation or ransom. But still, the “strategy” seems to pretty blatantly fly in the face of that whole “Argent Code.” Don’t you think?
Oh, and ATV’S? Not exactly the most stealthy hunting vehicles. You might as well tracked down Boyd and Erica using monster trucks . . .
Anywhoo, Allison pulls out her trusty bow and arrow, and shoots Erica in the side, immediately immobilizing her. Then, when Boyd (lamely) tries to come to her aid (HELLO! YOU ARE WEREWOLVES! DEFEND YOURSELVES! SHAKE WHAT YOUR DEREK GAVE YOU!), Allison’s got an arrow for him too, multiple arrows, in fact.
“Heartburn . . . need . . . TUMS.”
Did I mention that Allison continues to pelt poor Erica and Boyd with arrows, despite the fact that they have long been immobilized, and neither is a threat anymore. It gets to the point where Papa Argent has to literally shoot the bow and arrow out of Allison’s hand to get her to stop having so much fun!
Now, granted, werewolves heal. So, unless the bullets on those bows were silver tipped, Allison was in no danger of killing Boyd or Erica, no matter how many of them she wasted on them. Still though, it was an uncharacteristically cold move on Allison’s part. And when your wacky, “I kidnap my own daughter sometimes, just to teach her a lesson” father, thinks you’ve gone too far, it’s a pretty safe bet that you have . . .
Even more uncharacteristic of Allison was the surprisingly sleazy and arrogant joy she got out of capturing her two classmates. This accomplishment she haughtily took full credit for, in front of her father, just before gleefully calling “Grandpa” to report the good news. That’s right, I said “Grandpa.” Allison used to distance herself from the loony tunes old dude who spawned her father, by coldly referring to him as “Gerard.” Now, suddenly, she’s acting like their Mean Girl besties.
Daddy definitely does NOT approve . . .
My thoughts on this plot development? Too much, too fast . . .
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved seeing the heretofore almost frustratingly even=keeled Allison come a bit unhinged in these past few weeks over the death of her mother. And, acting-wise, Crystal Reed has really been “bringing it” in this regard. But what made Good Girl Allison’s slow descent in to Darth Vader territory seem so authentic and believable was that it was all anchored by a heart-wrenching sadness, and a lazer-like focus on Derek, the man she presumes to be her mother’s killer.
This week, Allison just seemed a little too happy for my liking. Her sudden glee over repeatedly shooting her classmates, when they were already down, for no reason whatsoever, was a bit hard for me to swallow.
Whatever Gerard put in that faux suicide letter must have been pretty darn powerful stuff to get Allison to change her ENTIRE personality for it, in the course of a week. Hey, maybe he laced it with that same crazy (“kill all the humans”) Cult Blood the vampires have been inhaling on True Blood . . .
A Hale Family Zombie Reunion
Back at the Hale house, Derek’s day just continues to get worse, as he finds himself faced with the Uncle he both killed, and unwittingly helped to come back from the dead. (How very Shakespearean!)
“You can tell I’m more dignified now, because I have a soul patch, and use hair gel . . .”
The two family members “catch up” with one another, by tossing household items at one another, and basically beating the sh*t at each other for a few hours. You know, just like old times!
Then, Peter (who, I’ll say this again, has been looking SUPER fine, since his reincarnation) decides to go all Yoda on Derek’s ass. “Save Jackson, you will. Teach you to stop being such a lame Alpha, I can,” Yoda Peter tells his nephew, more or less . . .
Peter claims that Jackson only became the kanaima in the first place, because he lacked a sense of identity. (That whole “no face” hallucination in the “Party Guessed” episode would seem to prove as much . . .) He further explains that calling Jackson by his “Christian” name, should be enough to bring him back to himself. (I guess being a burned-up corpse in the ground gives you a lot of time to catch up on your Bestiary reading . . .)
Oh, and here’s the kicker, Peter claims that the Hale’s should use Lydia to save Jackson, since he looooooooves her so much.
Is it just a mere coincidence that the person Peter wants to incorporate into their grand Kanaima-Away plan for Jackson Wittemore, just so happens to be the same girl Uncle ex-Alpha has been mind-raping, and using as his zombie slave all season? I think not . . .
Because, here’s the thing, I don’t care how hot he looks lately, I’m totally not buying Peter’s whole “I just want to be part of a pack again,” act. A few episodes back, the Vet explicitly told Derek to watch out for Peter’s attempts to mentally manipulate him. Unfortunately, I’m pretty sure that’s exactly what’s happening here . . .
Good Old Animal Magnetism
As much as I pick on Scott, I’m actually really enjoying the Scott / Isaac bromance that’s been percolating throughout the season. So, I hope that continues, and they don’t decide to . . . you know . . . kill the guy, or something.
One thing that was never really addressed with Isaac were his thoughts about the whole “Matt Thing,” especially since we learned that the two were childhood friends, and that Matt was playing at his house, when the whole “drowning thing” occurred. So, presumably, Isaac knew about it. I wonder if that aspect of the story will ever come up again . . .
Anywhoo, I found it interesting that while Boyd and Erica decided amongst themselves to abandon Derek, and escape Beacon Hills, Isaac came to world-beater Scott at the Vet’s office for advice.
You could say THAT again . . .
Of all of Derek’s wolf pack, Isaac actually had the least to lose by leaving, since he LITERALLY has no one keeping him in Beacon Hills. And yet, I still feel like he’s grasping for some connection, or reason to stay in town. Derek Hale wasn’t that connection. Neither was Erica Reyes. Scott might be. Except, Scott’s already got a whole Scooby Gang to wolf-sit. Is there room for one more? Tune in next week to find out . . .
“We can have slumber parties, and paint eachothers’ nails . . . just promise you won’t invite the swim team over, K?”
Oh, and did I mention that Werewolf Isaac has the power to fondle puppies and take their pain away. Does it get much cuter than that?
“He can ‘take my pain away’ anytime!”
Too bad I’m pretty sure this power is going to be used to take the pain away from a dying human next week.
But for now, we can just enjoy the adorable puppy love-ness of it all . . .
Because lacrosse games are exactly like Potentially Apocalyptic Alien Invasions . . .
It’s time for the Big Game. Jackson the Lizard Slave is in attendance, looking eeeeevvvill. Pal Dann wants to know why Jackson hasn’t been returning his calls. Maybe it’s because Hallmark hasn’t started selling: “Sorry, I became the kanaima and accidentally / on purpose paralyzed you, while going on my killing spree” cards just yet . . .
“Is this because I watched your sex tape?”
“That depends. Did you enjoy it?”
Regardless, Danny’s reaching out and calling to Jackson seems to break him out of his kanaima-fueled trance (just like Lydia was able to do last week) long enough to tell his best friend to RUN, if he sees him coming toward him at the game. Solid advice, Kanaima man!
Meanwhile, Coach Crackhead is inexplicably quoting the 1996 classic Alien Invasion Film, Independence Day (starring Will Smith and Bill Pullman as . . . wait for it . . . the President of the United States) — a movie that the entire locker room is way too young to have possibly seen in theaters — in order to rev the team up for their big game.
“That Bill Pullman is SO dreamy!”
(Well, I guess the kanaima is kind of alien-looking, when you really think about it. So, perhaps, the film reference isn’t quite as out there as it initially seemed.)
“Who you calling an ALIEN?”
Speaking of out there, what the frack is Scott’s mom doing in the gym locker room, ogling naked teenage boys? I mean sure, we needed to see her go tell Scott to “be a hero” or something, and tell him that she no longer thinks he’s hideous, just because he sometimes gets sideburns and a pointy face. But couldn’t this have waited until the team got to the field?
“You can’t fight it, Stiles. I know if I wait here long enough, eventually you are going to have to take off your shirt.”
Then again, along with the Coach himself, and Grandpa Argent, Mama McCall is probably the only one old enough to get the Independence Day reference. (I mean, Stiles got it. But that kid has “film geek” written all over him.)
Speaking of pep talks, Grandpa Crazy Pants Argent pops in to slyly tell the lacrosse team to MURDER the opposition. Of course, we all know full well he doesn’t give two craps about the game, and is only there to command Jackson, and seriously freak out Scott. But hey, it’s the thought that counts, right? Well . . . nevermind.
Anyway, mission accomplished, old man.
In which Stiles plays well (both with himself and others) . . .
Beacon Hills . . . we have a problem. You see, Scott McCall is our star werewolf lacrosse player. He’s also our co-captain, and resident super-hero, tasked with protecting the WORLD from Kanaima Jackson the Killing Machine, who just so happens to be the team’s other co-captain. So, what’s the problem, you say?
Well, basically the problem is that Scott CAN’T PLAY!
He can’t play because he’s a moron. his grades don’t meet the minimum requirements to participate in high school sports . . .
This means that, not only is there a good chance the Beavers are going to LOSE this game, there’s also a good chance . . . wait for it . . . THEY ARE ALL GOING TO DIE!
This sounds like a job for SupermanBatmanWolverine Isaac Lahey?
“You were expecting someone taller?”
So, what’s his big plan? Simple, he’s going to beat the crap out of everyone on his own team, so that the Coach has no choice but to play Scott, or risk forfeiting the game.
Wait . . . what?
Correct me if I’m wrong, because I don’t know jack about lacrosse. But doesn’t kicking your own teammates asses constitute some sort of a penalty, as in the kind of penalty that would get you thrown out of a game, before you REPEATED THE PROCESS ON ABOUT SIX PLAYERS? It’s still kind of fun to watch, though . . .
Eventually, Isaac himself gets a taste of his own medicine (presumably from the Kanaima, himself, though he gets un-paralyzed surprisingly quickly, all things considered), and is pulled out of the game on a stretcher.
That’s bad . . . (well, unless, of course, you were one of the players who didn’t end up getting beaten up because of it).
You know what’s very, very good, however? STILES GETS TO PLAY!!! (And not just with himself either, because he already did that twice today.)
And that causes Proud Papa Stilinski to have this reaction . . .
Initially, Stiles kind of stinks up the joint on the field, which causes his personal cheering section to have this reaction . . .
But then, all of the sudden he’s AWESOME, which makes Lydia do THIS . . .
Seems like, if these keeps up, Stiles might be scoring in more ways than one, next season. Hey, Lydia! It’s high time you recognized the awesomeness of Stiles. And, should you have any doubt in your mind that he is the right guy for you, might I remind you of the . . . size of his package?
Hey Grandpa Crazy Pants! I think it’s time to go back on your meds . . .
You see . . . it’s a pill container, and also a sundial . . . You gotta love old people and their trusty gadgets . . .
I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t really understand how the Supersonic Werewolf Hearing Power works. I mean, is it like a set of quality headphones, allowing you to drown out all crowd noises, in favor of the old geezer whispering sweet nothings in your ear from across the field? And what about Grandpa himself, I mean, presumably he was speaking at normal volume.
He’s totally eye-f*&king you right now . . .
How come no one but Scott had to listen to him threaten to kill Coach Crackhead, Scott’s mom, and assorted others, if Scott didn’t deliver him Derek in a handbag (which would be a really great Christmas present . . . just saying. ;))?
I won’t dwell on this too long though. What’s important here is that Beacon Hill WON THE GAME, even without Hero McCall!
This, of course, might prompt you to wonder where our hero had scampered off too, after Mini Hulk Isaac went through all that trouble to beat up his teammates. Well, as it turns out he went to SAVE ISAAC from Gerard.
“You totally thought you were going to get to shove that up my ass, didn’t you?”
In short, it was a really nice case of You Scratch My Hairy Werewolf Back, I’ll scratch yours . . .
But I guess now you are wondering who Gerard ordered Jackson to kill at the end of the game. And here’s the kicker, we still don’t know! Because after the game ended all of the lights went out in the field!
And then, get this Jackson KANAIMA’ED HIMSELF! (Way to take one for the team, Jackson . . . literally.)
So, does that mean everyone is safe then? Well, maybe, maybe not, because, wait for it . . . STILES IS MISSING . . .
Talk about a cliffhanger, right except not really, because we all saw Stiles very much alive in the promo, and we all know that the writers would all probably rather cut their right arms off than kill Stiles, which is entirely understandable given the sheer extent of his awesomeness?
And that was pretty much, “Battlefield,” in a nutshell. Soooo . . . what did you think? 😉
These haunting words comprised the tagline for the Jaguar pitch Don Draper made at the climax of the tour de force hour of television that was “The Other Woman.” On the surface, they speak to human nature, and its often unquenchable desire to seek spiritual fulfillment through superficial means, be it wealth, material possessions, or physical attractiveness.
However, “The Other Woman” takes this deceptively simplistic concept to a much deeper level, by posing to viewers a very serious question, one which we are all destined to face in our lives at one time or another. Namely, what price are you willing to pay to get what you want out of life? And is there ever a point where the personal sacrifices necessary for achievement outweigh the rewards?
Last week’s “Christmas Waltz,” ended rather triumphantly, with a newly re-energized and determined Don rousing his battle-weary troops, inspiring them all to work as hard as they could, and do whatever it took to win the Jaguar account for SCDP. He described landing the account as a “defining moment for the agency.” (Little did he know how prophetic those words would end up being.)
By the time we return to SCDP this week, it’s evident that some of the inspirational luster of Don’s speech has already started to fade. The ad men are tired, restless, and growing increasingly jaded about their prospective client . . . a car that, though admirably beautiful and enviably expensive, has so far proven to be woefully unreliable. In short, a Jaguar is the kind of date you wouldn’t think twice about inviting into your bed. But you probably would hesitate, before bringing it home to meet the parents.
(Speaking of price tags, I wonder how much Jaquar paid for the product placement it’s received these past two episodes. Whatever it was, I’d probably ask for my money back.)
Hungry and tired, the ad men are thrilled when a massive order of lobster arrives in the conference room to provide them with some much-needed sustenance, after a hard day’s work. But not Peggy. She doesn’t get any lobster, because she’s working on SCDP’s 25 or so other accounts, and NOT Jaguar. She gets a two-day old tuna sandwich from the nose-picking street vendor downstairs.
(I don’t know. This part seemed a little heavy handed for me. I mean, it’s not that big of an office. And, from the looks of it, about 7/8ths of the entire company was working on the Jaguar Account. How hard would it have been to offer a little lobster tail to the 5 or 6 people still working on other accounts? Also . . . um . . . isn’t SCDP a bit cash poor now? Wouldn’t it have made more sense to forgo the lobster, in exchange for those “Christmas Bonuses” that Lane won’t shut up about?)
While the working stiffs at SCDP were busy eating lobster, Account Men, Ken and Pete were forced to shovel down some serious crow, when they learned that their ability to land the Jaguar account had less to do with their firm’s advertising prowess, and more to do with what was underneath Joan Holloway’s dress. Jaguar’s pudgy dumpling of an executive definitely made no bones about what and who he needed SCDP to do in order to gain his business. (And, honestly, if that’s how Jaguar makes its business decisions, it’s no wonder the cars are “unreliable.”) Poor Ken Cosgrove! The look on his face, when Scummy McScumbag proposed he be allowed to boink Joan, as a “perk” of using SCDP to advertise his product, was like someone had just clubbed a baby seal right in front of him . . .
Lately, I’ve come to the conclusion that Kenny Cosgrove is actually the moral compass of Mad Men.
This would explain why he hardly ever has any lines . . .
Pete on the other hand has never been one to look a pimp horse in the mouth. So, of course, he only feigns mild distaste with the idea, when he not-so-tactfully broaches the subject with Joan in her office, the following day.
Like the seasoned pimp that he is, Pete blustered his way toward Joan’s desk, boldly demanding that she name her price, without the slightest hint of hesitation or remorse in his voice. He does so in a way that drastically downplays the extent of what he is asking her to do, and what her agreeing to do it would say about the company for which they both have chosen to work. “We’re talking about a night in your life. We’ve all had nights in our lives where we’ve made mistakes for free,” Pete reasons. (How very Indecent Proposal of him.)
And lord knows, if anybody knows a thing or two about making “free” mistakes it’s Pete Campbell . . .
What’s depressing is that the moment Pete broaches this subject with Joan, he has already singlehandedly taken his firm down the path to moral ruin. Regardless of what comes after, SCDP has just become the kind of firm that’s willing to entertain these kind of offers to obtain business. And Joan, who has spent over a decade of her life working tirelessly for the company, will never again be able to shake the fact that her bosses and colleagues value the almighty dollar over her self-respect and well-being.
In short, not all rapes happen in the bedroom . . .
But we’ve all come to expect this from Pete. What was more disturbing, to me anyway, was the way the other partners reacted, when Pete broached the subject with them. Bert Cooper, who, in the past, has often chastized his fellow co-workers for the ways in which their own greed and selfishness have negatively impacted the business, only uttered a few feeble words in protest, before following the herd.
Roger Sterling, who — many times in the past, has claimed to “love” Joan, and whose modus operandi all season has been to throw money at any and all problems that stand in his way — only seemed interested in whether he would be the one to have to pony up the payment for Joan’s Jaguar prostitution fee.
And then there was Lane, who gamely proposed that Joan request a partnership stake in the company, as opposed to the $50,000 lump sum initially offered by Pete . . . not because he truly cared about Joan’s well being . . . but because he knew the large payment would bankrupt the already over-extended firm, while exposing his own criminal actions in the process.
In fact, Joan’s only champion at the executive table seemed to be Don, who stormed out of the meeting in a huff at the suggestion, wrongfully assuming that his obvious refusal to consider the matter would be enough to put the subject to rest. He wouldn’t learn until later on in the episode just how wrong he truly was . . .
Elsewhere at SCDP, Peggy displayed her penchant for Don Draper style extemporaneous brilliance, when she came up with a new winning ending to a struggling ad campaign, off the while on the phone with the clients. The advertisement was meant to be shot in Paris. And Peggy, as originator of the idea, in the first place, rightfully requested the right to make the trip. Don balked at the idea, claiming that the account was Ginsberg’s, and he would be making the trip in her place. When Harry, Ken and Peggy urged him to reconsider, Don rudely tossed a wad of cash in Peggy’s face, inadvertently treating his erstwhile protege like the call girl, he so valiantly refused to allow Joan to be.
Oh, Don! When even HARRY CRANE thinks you are treating women badly, you KNOW you douchedom levels have just reached Mach 5 . . .
Always the gentleman, Ken Cosgrove rushes to comfort Peggy, even going as far as to offer to leave the firm with her, if Don doesn’t reconsider his treatment of her. But Peggy refuses to be comforted by her friend and colleague. After all, there’s only one person’s approval she’s always been seeking at SCDP. And it’s not Ken Cosgrove’s . . .
Don’s and Peggy’s relationship has always been complex, with Don’s treatment of the younger woman alternating between shockingly callous (“That’s what the money is for!”) and remarkably kind (“I will spend the rest of my life trying to hire you back.”) In some ways, I think the familiarity that has developed between Don and Peggy over the past few seasons, coupled with Don’s at-least-to-some-extent rightful belief that she owes her career to him, are what has led to the gradual souring of their relationship this season. Don often thinks of Peggy like his own daughter . . . a daughter, who he can scold, chastize, and challenge, in ways that he can’t with other colleagues, because he knows deep down they love one another, and can relate to one another on a more personal level . . . also . . . quite frankly, he signs her checks.
But what Don never really understood about Peggy was that it was never about the money, or even about being the boss’ fair-haired girl. For Peggy, what truly drove her at SCDP was a genuine love for what she was doing, and the drive to obtain the respect and recognition for her work, she felt she rightfully deserved. Each time Don took Peggy’s talents for granted . . . each time he passed her over for an opportunity, or slighted her good work, brought her closer and closer to the decision she made at the end of the episode. But ultimately, it was her old pal Freddy Rumsen, the first man at the firm to truly recognize her talents, who made her realize just how valuable of a commodity she had become in the industry, and what opportunities might become available to her, if she only had the courage to pursue them.
“I haven’t decided if you are really ambitious, ballerina, or if you just like to complain?” Freddy muses, while at lunch, with a highly distraught Peggy. Sometimes it takes the people who know us best, to show us what’s been in our hearts all along. When Don Draper’s slimy adversary Ken Chaough courts Peggy with 1,000 more than her asking price, and the much coveted title of “Copy Chief,” I think Peggy is less wowed by the financial sum she is offered, and more enticed by the prospect of working for someone who sees her not as a protege, or even a beloved child, but as an intellectual equal, and smart business acquisition to boot.
Don is both shocked and more than a bit hurt, when his wife fails to consult him about taking an audition which, if she gets the the part, would require her to live apart from him for months at a stretch. Later she goes on to say that, if he told her she couldn’t take the job, she would turn it down, but would probably hate him for it.
Megan continues to prove that she’s the one wearing the skinny jeans in the family, when she arrives at Don’s office in search of a quick pre-audition quickie to “up her confidence.” (Interestingly enough, it’s Megan’s sex kitten-like brazenness that ultimately inspires a morally aghast Ginsberg to come up with the tagline for Don Draper’s ultimate Jaguar pitch.)
But then, it’s Megan’s turn to get her ego taken down a few pegs, when she arrives at her audition, and the men on the other end of the casting couch are more interested in what’s underneath her dress, than the words that are coming out of her mouth . . .
A little older, and substantially less naive about the inner desires of men / the ways of the world, Joan Holloway seems to have reached her decision regarding the Indecent Proposal made to her earlier by Pete, and somewhat seconded by Lane. With an air of confidence that belies the inner turmoil she is obviously feeling, images of her repeated mistreatment by her soon-to-be ex husband ripe in her mind, Joan demands her five-percent stake in the company. Pete’s response is smug and self-satisfied, with just the slightest hint of remorse. “He’s not that bad,” Pete offers, wrongly assuming that Joan’s suitor’s lack of total hideousness will somehow soften the blow of what she’s about to do.
“He’s doing this,” Joan replies, matter-of-factly.
When Don hears that the rest of the partners went behind his back to orchestrate this agreement he is horrified, particularly in light of the tender moments he and Joan shared the week before. With a sense of purpose, and a surprising amount of concern for his colleague, Don rushes to Joan’s home, begging her not to go through with this, telling her that he was 100% against it from the beginning, and that sacrificing her own integrity and the company’s for a single account is simply not worth the price.
There’s a wistfulness in Joan’s face, as she listens to Don’s words that makes more sense later on in the episode. For a woman who has been used and mistreated by men her entire life . . . a woman who has been taught by her own mother, that a woman’s greatest ambition should be to be “admired,” Joan is seeing, for the first time, a man who truly cares about her . . . someone who is willing to go to the mat for her . . . to fight for her . . . to put his own career and financial security on the line for her well-being. She’s touched, honored, and impressed by this man with whom she’s never had a romantic history, but with whom she shares a history nonetheless . . .
We don’t get to see the aftermath of that scene . . . how Joan responds, after Don walks out that door. Instead, we are treated to an interplay between Don’s riveting, and yet, slightly disheartening, in light of recent events, Jaguar pitch about man’s elusive desire to “own” unattainable “beautiful things,” be them overpriced unreliable cars, or strong smart single mothers, who are willing to do what they can to provide for their children, even if it means sacrificing their own sense of self . . .
As a viewer, it’s incredibly hard to see Joan make this sacrifice . . . a woman who has always been the steadfast and sturdy rock, of SCDP . . . the unofficial mother of the gang. She put her trust in her colleagues, and they let her down, by putting her in the position to entertain an offer she simply couldn’t refuse. Of course, it’s even more heartbreaking, when we learn the truth about Don’s last ditch effort to get Joan to reconsider her decision. Through a series of flashbacks, we learn that he was too late . . . that by the time Don arrived on Joan’s doorstep, the deed was already done. Joan just couldn’t bring herself to tell him.
Had Don arrived earlier, would it have made a difference in Joan’s decision? Perhaps not. But now viewers will inevitably always be left wondering, and so will Joan . . .
Learning that SCDP landed the Jaguar account is a highly bittersweet moment for Don, particularly when he learns, based on Joan’s sudden presence at the partner’s meeting, what she sacrificed to achieve it. Now, he’ll never know whether he could have won the account on the merit’s of his pitching skills alone. Far from being in the partying mood, Don finds himself surprisingly eager to engage in a personal conversation with Peggy, the only woman remaining in his life, who he truly believes he understands. Little does he know that Peggy is about to turn his world upside down. “You really don’t know when things are good, do you?” Peggy inquires, clearly talking about more than the landing of the Jaguar account.
Anyone who’s ever left a job before, can relate to Peggy in this moment . . . the mixture of fear, guilt, excitement, and sadness, coursing through her veins, as she thanks Don for seeing something in her that no one else did . . . for changing her life . . . and, finally, for making it possible for her to chart out a new path for herself. At first, Don can’t take Peggy seriously. This is the one woman Don thought would never leave him. Once again, he wrongly assumes that this discussion is about money, as he blithely asks Peggy to name her price, echoing Pete’s discussion with Joan earlier in the episode.
But Peggy can’t be bought or swayed. Her decision is final. And when Don realizes that, his reaction is surprisingly emotional. In fact, the only time we’ve really ever seen Don get this emotional was when he learned that Anna Draper died, last season . . . Ironically, Peggy was with him in that moment too . . .
On the surface, Don is his cocksure self, telling Peggy not to bother with her two week notice, since there are tons of freelancers out in the hall waiting to take her place. But all that bluster falls away, when Peggy goes to give him that final handshake. Barely concealed tears welling up in his eyes, Don grabs her hand, and kisses it repeatedly, refusing to let go, as Peggy looks away tearfully, both embarrassed and touched by this show of emotion by her father figure, her colleague, and the man who was once her hero. For Don, the act is one mixed with emotion, caring, and just a hint of desperation. It harkens back to the pilot episode, in which Peggy grabbed Don’s hand, in a feeble attempt to seduce him, and he brutally rebuffed her. It also harkens back to that moment in “The Suitcase,” when Don grabs Peggy’s hand, while she offers him solace after a long and difficult night. Like Joan’s hand on Don’s cheek, earlier in the episode, the hand kiss is a simple gesture. But one that is frought with so much history and meaning.
On the way out of the office for the last time, Peggy catches Joan’s eyes, and the two share a meaningful look. Here are two strong, very different women, having recently both made bold and life-changing decisions, ones that will inevitably lead them down very different paths. Then, Peggy sighs and turns toward the elevator, waiting to take that final step. When she does, she smiles, ready to face whatever comes next. And despite all the tragedy, turmoil, and disappointments that filled the episode, how could you not root for an ending like that?
Yes Blair, we could tell by that balled up clump of fishnet stockings you wore on your head, that you were most certainly not yourself, this week. Go back to Chuck, honey. You dressed MUCH better, when you were dating him . . .”
Welcome back, Upper East Siders! So, the last time we spoke, Chuck was in a coma. A pregnant Blair was suffering from some serious internal bleeding. And things were looking VERY, VERY bad, for pretty much everyone on the show.
Now, a couple of holidays and a hiatus later, things are STILL looking VERY, VERY bad, for pretty much everyone on the show, but for entirely different reasons . . .
I think we ALL need a Monkey hug, and a good cry, after watching this . . .
Have you ever watched a television show that made you feel like you’ve just been punked? Like, at any moment, Ashton Kutcher is going to jump on your couch and say, “Just kidding! That was the fake episode! Now, you can watch the real one . . .”
Yeah, that’s kind of how I felt after watching “The End of the Affair?” . . . or . . . as I like to call it: The Episode Where Blair Makes a Monumentally Bad Decision and Rudely Blames the Man Upstairs.”
Sorry sweetie, but the truth hurts sometimes. . .
“Let Him Live . . .”
My first major gripe about the episode was the sequence in which it was shot. By using a Jump Foward / Flashback style of storytelling, the writers effectively took the most gut-wrenching and nerve-wracking aspect of the story (i.e. the Non Judging Breakfast Club sit in the hospital, anxiously awaiting the fate of Chuck and Blair), and haphazardly swept it under the rug, in favor of the virtual non-mystery of why Blair and Dan were acting so “mysteriously,” a few weeks later. (I think most of us figured that one out, about five minutes into the episode . . .)
DAN: “So, Blair, are you up for seeing a movie? I was thinking about Rosemary’s Baby . . . err . . . umm . . . I mean, Sophie’s Choice . . . While you were Sleeping? Aw crap! Let’s just see the new Chipmunk movie, and call it a day.”
I feel like this was a tremendous missed opportunity to showcase the acting abilities of our talented GG cast. I mean, their two best friends were DYING for crying out loud. Hey, I know it’s maudlin, writers! But if you are going to make the decision to put two of your main characters (one of whom is PREGNANT), in a near-lethal car accident, I wanna see some angst! I wanna see some tears! I wanna see the possibility of some Emmys, for crying out loud! I don’t care if the CW will never, ever win an Emmy, for as long as I live! I still believe in you, Ed Westwick!
. . . Emmy Hopeful.
But that’s beside the point of this recap . . .
So, what I’m going to do for you, dear readers, is tell the story of this episode chronologically, the way I believe it should have been told. Perhaps, that will help make more sense of it. I strongly doubt it, but it’s worth a shot.
I’ll begin with the most painfully beautiful moment in the entire episode. Chuck and Blair get rolled into the hospital on separate gurneys. They are both still conscious, but in an exceptional amount of pain, and incredibly frightened. Doctors surround them both, and there is a lot of blood on both beds.
Then, it happens. Chuck looks at Blair, and she looks back at him. The expression that passes between them is a mixture of love, longing, hope, and fear. Chuck reaches out his hand, as if to grab for Blair. But then he falls unconscious. His hand falls back, lifeless onto the gurney. Blair watches on, heartbroken, terrified, crushed. We all feel her pain.
It’s moments like these that remind me how VERY GOOD this episode could have been . . .
We cut to Blair waking up in a hospital bed. Serena comes in to see her, still dressed in her gown from Charlie / Ivy / Call Me Serena’s coming out party. Serena is tentative and nervous. She has bad but not particularly surprising news. Blair lost the baby.
Now, in Leighton’s and Blake’s defense, they handle this heartbreaking scene with aplomb. Blair’s tears bring a stepped-on puppy-like whimper to my throat. Serena’s reaction is more muted, which makes sense. After all, she has had time to process this, and wants to be strong for Blair. And yet, you can still tell she is breaking inside.
And. . . then the two pretty much never mention it again . . .
Now, I’m not saying that I wanted to watch an entire philosophical discussion on the loss of Blair’s baby. Let’s face it, philosophical discussions are not why most (OK . . . any) of us watch Gossip Girl. But this is a HUGE deal! I mean, Blair’s feelings about the loss of this baby have to be REALLY complicated, all things considered.
On one hand, this was going to be Blair’s first child. She may not have wanted to become pregnant, but Blair had made the decision to raise this baby. She had grown to love it, and had planned out a future raising it with Chuck. This is a loss of the most personal kind for her.
But there are also darker emotions surrounding this baby. For one thing, this was Blair’s sole link to Louis-bot, a machine man she doesn’t really love, and seems to have saddled herself to, more out of obligation than anything else. Also, though the writers often seem to forget, Blair is still in college. She’s someone who has extremely high career aspirations for herself, ones that a child would have certainly impacted. So, I would think that Blair would be feeling just a teensy bit relieved, as well as SUPER guilty for feeling that way.
It would have been nice of the writers to pay homage to that . . . especially since it’s something to which I suspect a lot of young mothers (and even some not so young mothers) who end up miscarrying, could strongly relate. Just sayin . . .
But alas, Serena’s not done being the bearer of bad news. She also has to tell Blair that Chuck hasn’t woken up since his . . . operation? “He’s lost a lot of blood. It’s not looking good,” says Serena solemnly.
Don’t go into the light, Chuck . . . (there’s no booze, there.)
Talk about guilt and sadness! Surely, we cannot blame Blair for seeking solace in the hospital chapel, in her time of need. It’s something many of us (even those of us who are less than religiously inclined) would have done if placed in that terrible situation. We also can’t blame her for praying for Chuck’s life, or for offering up some sort of generalized sacrifice, in exchange for his continued existence on this Earth . . .
But that’s when things start to get WEIRD . . . and by weird, I mean LAME.
Blair promises El Jefe in the Sky that she will marry the Cyborg, if He (or She) lets Chuck survive (Really? That’s the sacrifice she chose? She couldn’t have just given up designer shoes, or weird hats like the hideous one we see her wearing later on in the episode, or something?). Lo and behold! At that very moment, an angel a nurse enters the chapel, bathed in heavenly white light bad fluorescent lighting, to tell Blair that Chuck is asking for her.
And if Chuck was actually awake, when Blair arrived at his bedside, the episode could have ended right here, and I would have been an extremely happy camper. Well, aside from the whole “Ignoring the Dead Baby” thing. But NOOOO! Chuck had to take a nap! So, Blair had to tell his sleepy, lazy, ass, that “Just because we can’t be together, doesn’t mean I won’t love you.”
And then, she JUST WALKS AWAY . . . while Chuck snores (OK . . . he doesn’t snore. But, you get what I mean), blissfully unaware that his LIFE HAS JUST BEEN RUINED . . . AGAIN!
When a fully-recovered Chuck finally does confront Blair, he can’t understand (and neither can most of the fanbase), why she’s suddenly giving him the cold shoulder. After all, not long ago, the two were happily declaring mutual love, and planning out their lives together? So, what gives? Ask the angel in nurse’s clothing!
We find Chuck and Louis-bot in the rain, some time later, having what would probably be considered a romantic moonlight moment together, if this were another show, and Louis-bot weren’t WAY too boring for even a gay-version of Chuck to love. Of course, immediately I started to worry about Louis-bot. I mean, don’t robots tend to rust, when they get wet? I kept expecting him to droop down into a slouch, and stop working entirely!
WARNING: Placing Louis-bot under water may result in electric shock . . .
(Actually, that just got me thinking about something . . . So, Blair won’t be with Chuck, because she’s afraid God will KILL HIM, if she does. But what if Louis-bot dies because he is assassinated by a Secret Group of both Chair and Dair fans, working together toward the only thing on which they can truly agree? What does that say about Blair’s little theory? Will that be her fault, as well?)
Anywhoo, Chuck and Louis-bot are apparently a bit worried about Blair, who has recently returned to town, after some time away, and has been giving them both the brush-off. (Golly gee? I wonder why?) Chuck offers to bring Louis-bot back to Blair’s in his limo, because the poor cyborg has the sniffles. Isn’t that sweet? NO, DAMMIT! Let the bastard rust! He’s ruining the show!
At La Casa de Waldorf, the two possibly jilted lovers contemplate whether Blair might be having an affair with Donut Dan. (Really? Again? Didn’t we do this storyline, already?) There is even some talk about whether it would be appropriate to hire a private investigator to figure that out. (Yes, because hiring a private investigator always works out SO WELL for You Rich People . . .)
“Is it your turn to follow Blair to Brooklyn this week, or mine?”
After the boy and his robot depart, we see Blair skulking in the darkness . . . something she does, to varying degrees, throughout the entire episode. Come to think of it, the entire cast seems to skulk in the darkness throughout most of this episode . . .quite possibly because they are embarrassed by some of the inane things the writers are making their characters do . . .
“Maybe if I wear this, no one will recognize me.”
Chuck then heads out to Brooklyn (The characters have all been going there a lot lately. Is Brooklyn the New Upper East Side?) to confront Humpty Humphrey about whether or not he’s actually boning Blair. The Donut plays dumb, not surprisingly. But, in a twist that shocks absolutely no one, the minute Chuck leaves, Blair is waiting in the wings, with her catchphrase for the episode: “He can never know the truth.”
Well, now, that sounds like a Lifetime movie waiting to happen . . .
The next day, Donut finds Blair crying in the most gorgeous Vera Wang wedding dress I’ve ever seen. She doesn’t feel right wearing this dress, when everything has changed so much in her life, since she last had it on.
“Hey Chuck! No peeking, before the wedding! It’s bad luck (and also a bit pervy).”
Humpty Humphrey suggests a new dress. Sadly enough, this statement only reminded me of that terrible movie Bride Wars, in which Kate Hudson said, “You don’t alter Vera to fit you. You alter yourself to fit Vera.”
Ahhh . . . but Kate Hudson is no Blair Waldorf, apparently. Because, seconds later, out pops a very perky Vera Wang, who’s just positively thrilled to whip up a new dress for the Girl Who Would Be Queen B . . . at the VERY last minute. She’s such a trooper, that Vera!
PRODUCT PLACEMENT ALERT!
This is followed by more skulking around town for Dan and Blair. (Did I mention Blair is dressed like that Madeleine chick from the children’s books? Weird . ..) You know who else is skulking around? Chuck. He’s watching Dan and Blair, while making The Face. You know The Face I’m talking about . . .
Yep. That’s the one . . .
Then, Dan and Blair go into a Secret House alone together!
Chuck makes The Face again, only this time, it’s a MADDER Face.
As it turns out (though, of course, Super Sleuth Chuck never even thinks to investigate this), the Secret House Donut and Blair have been sneaking in and out of, throughout the hiatus, is actually not a hotel that rents by the hour (Thank the LORD!). It’s actually . . . wait for it . . . a CHURCH . . . one to which some kindly priest has given Blair her very own key. Riiiiight, because that’s what priests do . . . give members of their congregation their own keys, just for fun! *insert inappropriate, and highly offensive, priest joke here*
Apparently, Blair’s been chatting with her good pal, Upstairs, hoping that she can get some kind of reprieve on that TERRIBLE DEAL SHE MADE WITH HIM OR HER. But before the Man or Woman Upstairs can kindly tell Blair, “Sorry, can’t talk now, have global hunger, war, massive poverty, and disease to cure, first,” she looks out the window to see Chuck almost get KILLED BY A CAR . . . AGAIN.
(Will this madness never end?)
Convenient, right? Well, just like the angelic nurse from earlier, this is apparently all the signs Blair needs to know she is most definitely fated to live out a miserable life with Robot Man. Somewhere in Heaven, an angel has lost his wings . . .
There’s a New Gossip Girl in Town . . .
Way to bury the lead, writers! Here’s another important thing that happened on the Upper East Side, during the hiatus, that none of us got to see: Gossip Girl was FIRED! Seriously! They didn’t even let her do the episode introduction!
Apparently, as promised, Serena and the rest of the Non Judging Breakfast Club punished our series’ narrator for purportedly sicking the paparazzi on Chuck and Blair, by publicly blaming her for Chuck’s and Blair’s accident. Harsh! So, now where are people sending those juicy blasts and photographs they used to send Gossip Girl, you might ask?
Wait for it . . . to Serena van der Woodsen . . .
“O . . . M . . . G!”
That’s right boys and girls. Apparently, not only is Serena capable of reading, she can also write . . . well, blog. (Yes, I am fully aware that I just insulted myself. Thank you for noticing . . .)
Oh, how the mighty UES hath fallen? Can you imagine having to go from reading the smart, witty, snarky barbs of Kristen Bell to being stuck with mind-numbing descriptions of what Serena van der Woodsen had for breakfast that morning. Chuck’s and Blair’s accident was a sad night for the Upper East Side, indeed . . .
Remember that part in Mean Girls, where, the moment Rachel McAdam’s character got fat and relatively unpopular, the other two girls started idolizing Lindsay Lohan’s character, simply because they needed to follow someone? Well, that’s kind of what happens with the original Gossip Girl loses her crown. All the UES cronies end up sending their “blasts” to . . . Serena.
But whatever is our blonde bastion of integrity to do with all this power?
New Boss Nate says PUBLISH THEM ALL! (You know, because he’s the “honest” journalist . . . with “integrity” or something.) But Serena’s not so sure she should do that. After all, it was her idea to get GG fired, in the first place. Wouldn’t that make her a hypocrite?
(And besides, she just bought a new pair of shoes that she really wants the UES’ opinion on!)
So, what exactly do these two aforementioned storylines have in common, you might ask? Not much. Well, you see, as I mentioned earlier Chuck and Louis-bot are now fully convinced that Donut and Blair are having an affair (After all, they saw them TALKING and entering a BUILDING together. What other reason could they possibly have for doing that, than boning?). Therefore, TweedleBass and TweedleBot come up with the brilliant idea to (1) review Serena’s e-mail themselves for more damning evidence; and (2)”out” Dan and Blair as the hottest new Secret Couple at Nate’s Spectator party, by inserting one of these pictures into the Spectator’s slide show.
*insert robot laugh here*
Learning what Bot and Chuck are planning to do, prompts Serena to FINALLY confront her friend about what “F” is happening between her and Dan. So, FINALLY, Blair comes clean about her whole Pact with the LAWWWWD! thing. Not surprisingly, Serena finds it just as ridiculous as the rest of us. “That was not a miracle. That was modern medicine!” Serena snarks of Chuck’s Return from the Great Beyond. “God doesn’t punish people for being in love,” she explains further.
“When I become the smartest character on the show . . . something is VERY, VERY wrong.”
But Blair, having already drank the writer’s Kool-Aid, is unconvinced. And this causes Serena to have to make the Ultimate Sacrifice, in order to protect her friends secret. Serena must . . . pretend publicly to be DATING her brother DAN THE DONUT . . .
Wait . . . what? I’m sorry, did that not make sense to anyone else? Why would Blair and Dan be spending all this time together, if Serena and Dan were screwing? Do they need a chaperone, or something? Are we actually supposed to believe that a savvy guy like Chuck is going to buy this pile of steaming horse poopy? Heck, even Nate’s too smart to fall for this one!
“I am? Wait . . . yes, I am to smart to fall for that!”
Oh, Serena, honey! If you really wanted another opportunity to screw Humpty Humphrey that badly, all you really had to do is wear a brunette wig, and tell Dan that if he squints really hard, you might just pass for Blair . . . (Kind of like someone else we know did once . . . remember?)
In the end, Serena gets to smooch a certain Donut at the stroke of Midnight at the Spectator New Year’s party . . .
. . . while Blair (surprise) kisses that slug Louis-bot, and Chuck kisses Monkey . . . or at least he would if Monkey was actually invited to the party. (Stupid Nate! You are so dog-ist!)
Did I mention that Serena decides to read and publish those Gossip Blasts, after all? Oh, but she’s going to do it “with honor” . . . whatever that means?
“Integrity RULES! Let’s go get wasted . . .”
Speaking of the Blogger Formerly Known as Gossip Girl . . .
Strange Bedfellows . . .
Nate’s been getting some weird text messages lately . . . No, not the good dirty kind . . . the kind that tells him he’s not a “journalist with integrity,” because he accused the paparazzi (and Gossip Girl) of almost killing Chuck and Blair, without knowing “the whole story.” So, Nate does a little investigating. He interviews the limo driver, checks his receipts, and looks at some pictures. All of this helps him to find out what most of us already knew: (1) that the limo driver’s brakes had been cut prior to heading off into the night; and (2) that the limo that crashed was actually meant for Nate . . .
Oh, but the real kicker is this . . . I bet you’ll never guess who’s been providing him with this intel? It’s GOSSIP GIRL . . . the real one . . . (XOXO!). And she wants to pair up with Nate to solve the Big Mystery we all already figured out, in exchange for getting her blog back. Sounds like a good deal right?
(Now, if we could only get her to confirm our suspicions that Diana is really Chuck’s mom? Which reminds me, did the GG writers just completely forget that Diana was returning to town the night of Chuck’s accident?)
In other sort of gossip-related news . . .
Will the Real Charlie (Lola) Rhodes please stand up?
It seems there were more private investigator in this episode than there were sensible plot points. The other private investigator was hired by Lily to find Not-Really Charlie Rhodes. Lily is so shocked to learn that “Charlie” never left New York that she heads immediately to the college where the Crazy Cousin is apparently enrolled. However, when Lily finally comes face-to-face with Charlie Rhodes, or “Lola” as she calls herself, she’s not the Charlie / Ivy / Call Me Serena we’ve grown to know and not-necessarily love, but, rather, some other random blonde chick.
“Who the f*&k are you?”
Convinced that this woman is just some other lady who happens to share Charlotte Rhodes’ name, Lily decides to finally let “Charlie” go and be Charlie. But, here’s the kicker. Lola Rhodes is the REAL Charlie Rhodes . . . says the wallet-sized photograph of Mama Carol, sitting right next to her student ID. So, now is someone going to tell me how “Lola Rhodes” has managed to live on the Upper East Side all this time, and NEVER, EVER ran into Gossip Girl? For shame!
“That Charlie . . . what a loser!”
But even a less-than-stellar Gossip Girl episode like this one, wouldn’t be complete, without a gut-squeezing sob fest of a Chair scene. And we got one . . .
“Just because we can’t be together, doesn’t mean I don’t love you.”
Oh Blair, your mouth says no, but every other part of you says yes to Chuck Bass. Why else do you make it your business to visit him at the end of every episode that involves you purportedly cutting him out of your life. What made this particular scene so incredibly painful was how genuinely excited Chuck was to see Blair.
It was almost as if he, like the rest of us, believed this entire episode to be nothing but a VERY BAD (and boring) DREAM. But noooooo . . . Blair just wants to tell Chuck to not revert back to douchedom, now that she’s given him the old heave-ho, religious style.
You’ve got to admit, it’s a valid point. When the going gets tough, Chuck does have a tendency to get douchey. And this is coming from someone who loves Chuck dearly, even when he’s on his absolute worst behavior.
But Chuck’s not about to give up on Blair. He knows the moment they shared in that limo, and before it, at the Empire was 100% real. And he’s not going to make the same mistake again, of giving up on what he loves without a fight.
And why would he, hen the chemistry between Chuck and Blair is just as scorching as ever, even during a moment as turbulent (and frustrating) as this one . . .
And yet, the clincher of this scene is when Blair repeats to Chuck those very same words we heard her say to him in the hospital . . . words that he is only now allowing himself to remember: “Just because we can’t be together, doesn’t mean I don’t love you.”
You know that saying, “If you love someone set it free, if it comes back to you, it’s meant to be yours?” DON’T FOLLOW THAT ADVICE, CHUCK! You chase after that girl, and don’t stop until she’s back in your arms. It’s what Jesus would do . . . (Yeah, I went there.)
Speaking of which, you know how Blair explained away her odd behavior to Louis-bot at the end of the episode? She claimed it was because she was converting to Catholicism? Yeah . . . I have nothing to say about that . . . at all . . .
But hey, next week’s episode looks promising (at least according to our friends from Canada) . . . Check it out . . .
As for the United States, their promo chooses to focus more on Blair getting wasted, and arrested. (Silly Americans, and their boozy ways! :))
[Greetings, Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars Fans! I know I owe you all two recaps today. Unfortunately, I was feeling a bit under the weather last night. However, I hope to get both recaps out to you by early January 18th (all fingers crossed). This means my Glee-cap should arrive by January 19th. Sorry about the delay. And thank you for being patient!]
BONNIE: “Make a wish, Caroline.”
CAROLINE: “I wish to get more action than Elena, this year.”
(3) Elena refused a second kiss from Damon, and I was totally OK with it. (BECAUSE, NEXT TIME, SHE’S GOING TO KISS HIM, INSTEAD!)
(4) I found myself incredibly turned on by a (sort of) love scene between Caroline, and someone who wasn’t Tyler . . .
Clearly, the apocalypse is upon us . . .
Also this week, I found myself, at various points during the episode, seriously questioning the respective motivations of Stefan, Klaus, and Tyler.
Are these men behaving out of self-interest, genuine concern for their lady friends, or, in the case of Tyler, a slighty modified version of compulsion? Also, would they all have been better off keeping their hands (and teeth) to themselves?
All in all, it was a very intriguing episode . . . one I very much look forward to “biting into” with you, right now . . .
(By the way, special thanks to Andre, for providing me some seriously amazing screencaps for this episode. I just wish we had a TVD tumblr, so that I can share them all with you.)
“I will not imagine Damon naked. I will not imagine Damon naked . . . I will not . . .”
So, Fangbangers, have you ever been really horny stressed out? Do you sometimes find yourself with so much excess desire and sexual energy, you simply must find someone to bone some way to release it? I have. And whenever I feel this way, I tend to GO BONE DAMON SALVATORE, THIS INSTANT, ELENA! do one of two things . . .
(1) workout my frustrations with some good old-fashioned humping physical exertion; or
(2) get naked cool off in a nice, refreshing shower.
When you think about it, it actually makes a lot of sense that Elena ended up doing the former, especially, in light of her recent epic porch smooch with Damon.
It’s also no surprise that, Damon did the latter. (After all, let’s face it, it’s been WAY TOO LONG, since we got to see Mr. Smoulderhotter NAKED!)
I’ve never been so envious of a towel, in my entire life.
I mean, Damon’s always been known to be quite the suds-loving dude . . . He takes his personal hygiene VERY seriously . . .
And . . . now, I’m jealous of the shower head . . .
After three seasons of angst, and unrequited love, the elder Salvatore Brother has FINALLY unburdened himself to Elena. He’s exposed himself to her, in the rawest, most personal way, and SHE reciprocated!
It was everything he dreamed about. And he’s totally satisfied with how it all turned out.
Elena, on the other hand, is CONFUSED, not to mention SERIOUSLY SEXUALLY FRUSTRATED. It’s as if, through that kiss, Damon transferred years of horny angst, unrequited love, and giddy confusion from his shoulders onto her own . . .
The only way to release that tension will be for Elena to similarly unburden herself. But, until she does that, something tells me she’s going to be thinking about that kiss for a VERY, VERY long time . . .
“Have you talked to Damon, today?” Elena asks Alaric apprehensively, as she thrusts her body into that big sweaty hunk of punching bag. (It’s a surprisingly girly comment, coming from our new warrior princess . . . Suddenly, she’s a preteen again, asking her best friend, if he thinks her crush likes her.)
Alaric clearly suspects something is going on between his surrogate kid, and his bromantic buddy, but, fortunately knows when to leave well enough alone . . .
“She could beat me up, for sure.”
Meanwhile, over at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Stefan also might suspect that Damon’s gotten some tongue action (among other things), when the latter saunters out of his shower, naked except for a towel, looking surprisingly peppy, not to mention cocky as hell.
But if you were hoping for a brotherly bonding / gossip session over the brother’s mutual Gal Friday, you will end up being sorely disappointed. Stefan, who, by the way, hasn’t been laid in AGES . . .
“Rub it in, why don’t ya?”
. . . is all business. He wants the two of them over at Institution for Dead Witches on the Rag, ASAP, so that the pair can discuss Operation Kill Klaus.
As douchetastic and cold as Stefan has been, of late (He also seems to be wearing a heck of a lot more guyliner, since he went over to the dark side.), it was kind of fun to see the Salvatore Brothers back to their old schemes, and sibling banter. We haven’t seen that from them, in a while . . .
Knock, Knock . . . (a.k.a. Funeral 1)
Knock, knock . . .
Heartless Hybrid . . .
Heartless Hybrid who . . .
Despite the fact that there are three other unopened coffins in our midst (one of which contains Elijah and his awesome hair) . . .
. . . everyone only seems interested in that Mystery One . . .
“What are we? Chopped liver?”
We find Bonnie at the Institution, doing her own version of Bibbity Bobbity Boo over it . . .
Hey, I’ve got an idea. Why doesn’t she try to light the coffin on fire, or give it a headache, like she used to do to Damon . . .
(only without the nosebleeds . . . Have we completely forgotten about the nosebleeds, writers?) to no avail.
That’s right, Bonnie. I’m never letting you live this down . . .
Later, Damon tries to bash it in with a crowbar. That’s more like it. I’m just waiting for a Batsh*t Crazy Stefan to come at the thing with an electric chainsaw. Now, THAT would be awesome . . .
But, suddenly, just as Bonnie finishes her silly little rhyme, and Damon and Stefan reach the doorway to the Institution, the coffins disappear (What a clever little security system those witches have set up!) Damon rushes inside to warn Bonnie. Then, he and Stefan tag team and promptly de-heart our first anonymous hybrid victim of the evening.
Man, is it just me, or are these hybrids incredibly lame?
I don’t know, Klaus. Maybe they get that from their mom’s side of the family? But it seems to me like some of the Season 1 vampires, were about ten times more difficult to kill than these supposed Lean, Mean, Killing Machines . . .
Part vampire . . . part werewolf . . . ALL LOSER?
“These hybrids are really bringing the neighborhood down,” snarks Damon, as he tosses the bloody heart on the floor.
No wonder he showers so much . . .
Correction: They WOULD be bringing the neighborhood down, if any of them were actually smart enough to survive longer than five minutes to do it . . .
A Very, Very Un-Birthday to YOU!
“I was originally going to write the letters in my own blood, but thought that might be inappropriate.”
Over at school, Elena and Bonnie are busy decorating undead birthday girl, Caroline’s locker, when Elena announces that she has a confession to make. “I kissed Damon, and it was so hot I nearly orgasmed, right there on my porch. I’m so horny right now I could SCREAM. Jeremy’s leaving Mystic Falls, because I made Damon compel him to do so,” she admits, more or less.
The look on Bonnie’s face, when she hears this, is just FILLED with judgment. Can you imagine what her face is going to look like, when she learns Damon and Elena are boning?
She knows her ex would never willingly leave his family to battle evil, while he scurried off to someplace “safe.” And she also knows how much Jeremy always hated the way everyone, especially his sister, always treated him like a toddler, and never let him play in any Scooby Games. But, as angry as she is, Bonnie doesn’t say anything . . . yet.
Instead, she goes and asks Jeremy about why he’s leaving. And when he provides her with the stock, Stepford Husband, compulsion response with which Damon has provided him, she gives him this smirk that says, “You are acting like a such a brainwashed tool, right now. And you don’t even know it.”
For a second, it seems like Bonnie just might have gotten through to Jeremy. But then he sees a shiny object (Ghost Anna?), and completely forgets that she exists. Sorry, Bonster. You may be right about this one. But your ship has definitely sailed . . .
“I’m sorry. Damon has also compelled me to forget the name of that witch I used to screw.”
Meanwhile, an unusually Mopey Caroline arrives at school to find Tyler waiting for her in the parking lot.
“I could always ‘accidentally’ run him over with my car . . .”
I know girls like Caroline. Under normal circumstances, she’d probably show up to school on her birthday, wearing a tiara, a gold sequined dress, and a big button that says, “F*&k Kiss me, I’m a year older.”
“When I open my eyes, I better see lot of expensive presents in front of me, or else!”
But our girl Caroline has changed, in more ways than one, since last year. And the sight of her erstwhile beau isn’t making things any easier on her.
Speaking of subdued, the events of the past week seem to have finally gotten it through Tyler’s thick (but still adorable) hybrid skull that being “Gay for Klaus” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. He apologizes profusely to Caroline for no longer being able to put her first, given how demanding his new lover happens to be. Then, he sweetly slips an adorable silver charm bracelet into her hand, wishes her happy birthday, and exits stage left . . .
As the couple talk, there’s some song playing in the background, in which the lyrics repeat, “It’s over,” over and OVER again. And there’s just something about it that really makes me want to break something.
Many fellow TVD fans have often complained about the LOUDNESS of the show’s background music. But this was the first time it TRULY bothered me . . . like a too-loud laugh track, over a part of a sitcom that wasn’t particularly funny . . .
“Turn the music down, dammit, I’m trying to hear FORWOOD!”
All this angst and pedantic music quickly become too much for Caroline. So, her and her plaid Catholic School Girl Skirt both decide to take a sick day . . .
How very Britney Spears, circa 1998 . . .
When, she arrives back at her house, however, Elena, Matt, and Bonnie are there waiting for her. (Did they all call in sick too?)
How many high school boys do you know who would willingly wear a bubble gum pink dunce cap?
They’ve planned a tequila campfire party in her honor. But Caroline, as we know, isn’t in a celebrating mood. “[My birthday, this year] is just a reminder that I’m dead,” she gripes. “I’m stuck in a filler year,” Vampire Barbie adds about her “forever 17” status.
(I don’t know about 17 being a filler year, per se. At least you can get your driver’s license, over and over again!)
But worry not, Caroline fans. Because Elena Gilbert, Therapist to Vampires, knows exactly the kind of party that Caroline needs . . .
A Very Klefan Breakup (a.k.a Funeral 2)
Speaking of vampires who are desperately in need of both therapy and sex, it seems Klaus has crafted a comfy new coffin for his re-daggered sister, Rebekah (or, perhaps, he saved the old one . . . knowing it wouldn’t be long before he’d get sick of his sister, and need it again).
He tells Punky She-Hybrid to “Show Rebekah to her room,” while lovingly caressing the coffin. And, for a moment, I’m reminded of that movie where Ryan Gosling started having intimate conversations with, and eventually, if I recall, marrying, a life-sized female doll . . .
But before Punky She-Hybrid can give Coffin Number 1, the grand tour of the Original Hybrid Suite, Stefan magically appears . . . (because, apparently, this is a day for Reunions with Ex-Boyfriends).
Klaus’ eyes light up when he sees his Steffypoo. And for a moment, I think the ancient vampire truly believes that the two of them are about to kiss and have sex make up.
But before Klaus and Stefan can continue their weekly weiner-measuring contest, Stefan has some grievances to air about their relationship, “friends don’t strip friends of their free will,” whines Stefan, of Klaus’ Very Bad Boyfriend decision to render him a virtual zombie for three or four episodes.
“Must . . . eat . . . braaaaaiiiiins.”
To Klaus’ credit, he actually apologizes for this. “I know that was extreme, but I can get a bit moody sometimes,” says the guy who has a habit of KILLING his relatives, for fun. “I was hoping [now that all that is over and done], that we could pick up right where we left off,” he coos, the sexual suggestiveness of his statement, fairly clear, as he winks at his boy toy, and blows kisses in his direction.
But Stefan’s not giving in so easily, nor is he swayed, by Klaus’ decision to play the “Brother Card.” In fact, Stefan’s SOOOO not down with the idea of a Klefan reunion that he CHOPS OF PUNKY SHE-HYBRID’S HEAD!
So, remember back when Stefan used to eat people’s heads off, and then glue them back on, because he felt bad about it? Apparently, neither does he . . .
And another one bites the dust . . .
I love how the decapitated body just stood there, for about three seconds, before finally crumbling to the ground.
For those of you keeping track at home, out of Klaus’ merry band of hybrids, we now have two, without hearts, and two without heads. Now, we just need some arms, legs, and torsos, up in this joint. And we could have ourselves a mean game of Hangman!
But alas, Klaus decides to burn Punky She-Hybrid’s head, in all it’s stylish Angry Girl Band-loving glory. This to me, seems like a real waste, especially when a “decorative sculpture” like this could really have spruced up Coffin Rebekah’s new bedroom . . .
A Very Klyler Breakup?
But Stefan isn’t the only boy toy of Klaus’ that’s cheesed off at him. Seemingly moments after Stefan the Decapitator has departed, in comes a snarling, feral-looking Tyler. He’s not giving in to this “sire” thing. No sir! He’s his own man, dammit.
So, of course, Klaus has to send Tyler off on another errand: namely, bite Caroline, and give her were-hybrid rabies, like Rose and Damon, before her.
(Hmmm . . . interesting. So, a hybrid bite can kill a vampire, just as easily as a werewolf one can, despite the fact that hybrids are, technically, part vampire. What happens, when they bite themselves?)
Tyler says “Hell to the No” to this errand, which I appreciated very much (Of course, I would have appreciated it much more, if his “Hell to the No” was followed by “Pretty please don’t kill Caroline, because I love her” . . . as opposed to merely, “Why should I do it?” . . . the unspoken . . . and, perhaps, unintentional, implication being that it would be OK, if someone else did it).
“See? I should have run him over with my car!”
Klaus pouts a bit, at his sex slave’s surprising disobedience. But, oddly enough, he ultimately lets Tyler off the hook, for this particular errand, without much fanfare . . . or does he?
In which it becomes shockingly apparent that the entire Founder’s Council is made up of vampires and psycho killers . . .
That night, Team Bad Ass, a.k.a. Alaric and Damon, attend one of those ridiculous faux-Founder’s Day parties at the Lockwood Mansion, so that they can later appear at one of those totally useless Anti-Vampire Council meetings. While they wait, Alaric talks to Damon about how odd it is that Stefan’s gone balls out, evil, while Damon is in hero-mode, and playing house with Elena. (You can always count on Alaric to say what everyone else is thinking . . .)
Speaking of Elena, “something’s up with [her],” Alaric confides in his bromantic buddy.
Damon smirks at this, undoubtedly imagining the way her tongue tastes. But he reveals nothing. Instead, he deflects, “I’m sure, whatever it is it starts with a ‘Stef’ and ends with an ‘an.'” He jokes. (More like starts with a “DAM” and ends with an “IT’S ON!”)
Crazy Nanny Carrie, er, I mean Meredith Fell then annoyingly magically appears to hit on Alaric some more, and remind us that, as a “Founding Fell,” she’s part of this Useless Council too . . .(Hey, you know who else was a Fell? Season 1 Logan . . . the guy Damon and Alaric both killed . . . coincidence?)
Crazy Nanny continues to flirt with Alaric, and make weirdly threatening references to the fact that she still imagines throwing her ex boyfriend from high school off a bridge. Woah, Crazy Nanny Meredith! Considering that you’re a doctor, it’s safe to say you’ve been out of high school for at least ten years. It’s time to let go, psychopath . . .
Later, we see said ex-boyfriend and Meredith fighting about something. The ex gets a bit rough with Meredith, and Prince Alaric comes to her rescue. Instead of being mad at Alaric, the guy in question actually seems to pity him, even going so far as to warn him about the nutjob he’s about to start screwing. (Clearly, this guy has watched One Tree Hill and Pretty Little Liars.)
Cause of death: The use of too much hair product, at once . . .
We later learn that this guy is the Town Medical Examiner, a.k.a. The Guy Who Lies and Says Residents Were Killed by Wild Dogs, When They Were Actually Sucked Dry by Stefan Salvatore . . .
More interesting than Crazy Nanny Meredith’s fantasies of becoming Stephen King’s Carrie, and Medical Examiner Guy’s shockingly bad hair is the fact that “some British guy,” has apparently donated oodles of cash to Mystic Falls’ Founder’s Council.
Annnnd . . . that’s how the Baddest Vampire of them All, and his Band of Strong, But Stupid, Hybrids all became honorary members of the Now Virtually 0% Human Anti-Vampire Council . . . Would you believe that Klaus got his foot in the proverbial council door, by offering the group PROTECTION from Stefan? Talk about the ultimate switcheroo.
To be honest, I was much less surprised that Carol Lockwood went along with her son’s new boyfriend’s plans, than I was that former vampire despiser, Lizard Forbes has suddenly gone out and bought herself a “Team Klaus” t-shirt.
Is it possible that she is predicting a future romance for her Vampire Barbie daughter, and the Original Hybrid? Stay tuned . . .
LIZ: “Bet you $20 they are boning by sweeps week.”
DAMON: “I’ll take that bet . . .”
Speaking of Crazy!Stefan, he makes a go at killing, yet a third hybrid, upstairs in the Lockwood Mansion. (This one, would have been another beheading . . . not very creative. However, he is ultimately stopped by Peacekeeping!Damon. Go figure! Damon’s passionate plea of “No dead hybrids at the Founder’s Party,” reminds me so much of Chris Rock’s “No sex in the Champagne Room,” that it makes me giggle.
Stefan, however, isn’t amused. So, he storms off to go pee on some more proverbial trees, so as to mark his town territory, and “be the better villain,” so to speak. And by “trees,” I mean “Elena” . . .
Meanwhile . . .
Here Lies Caroline Forbes . . . (a.k.a. Funeral 3)
In the most morbid, but surprisingly appropriate birthday party ever, Elena and the gang take Caroline to Fell’s tomb. There, they decide to give her a FUNERAL . . . you know, because she’s dead . . . and stuff. The idea, of course, is to get her to stop focusing on her OLD life of GETTING OLD, and start focusing on her NEW LIFE (which . . . is really, more or less, the same as her old one, except she occasionally drinks blood, and never ever will have to pay for Botox).
Then, Caroline proceeds to get mildly inebriated on tequila, and uses it as an excuse to drunk text Tyler. (We’ve all been there. ;)) This prompts Elena to make a snide remark, and Bonnie to stick up for Caroline. (AGAIN, I’m agreeing with Bonnie AGAIN! What the heck is wrong with me?) Apparently, liquor has loosened Bonnie’s lips enough for her to Elena what she really things of her decision to steal Jeremy’s free will, and send him away, possibly for good.
“Judging you . . . again.”
Matt gripes comedically, that all this catty girl talk is totally ruining Caroline’s kickass funeral. So, BonBon leaves. Enter Tyler to the tune of the song “Birthday Sex.” (Now, THAT would have been a good soundtrack choice!)
Tyler wants to talk to Caroline . . . alone. You see, his conversation with Klaus has taught him that he CAN, in fact say no. . . maybe. Of course, he’s thrilled . . . so thrilled, in fact, that he confesses his love to Caroline. Now, they are kissing. Now, they are humping against a tree. Now, they are . . . BITING EACHOTHER’S NECKS????
Ruh-roh! Apparently, some foreplay is just no longer acceptable, when you are a hybrid hooking up with a Vampire Barbie. Caroline falls to the floor, a mixture of shock, accusation, and pain, on her face.
Gnarliest hickey ever . . . I think Tyler might need braces . . .
To Tyler’s credit, he looks genuinely shocked at what he did. He obeyed Klaus’ wishes after all, even though (I think) he clearly didn’t want to do so. Now, if that ‘s not compulsion, I don’t know what is . . .
I would have liked for Tyler not to run off into the woods like a b*tch to leave Caroline dying in the forest. But run off, he did. In Tyler’s defense, Caroline asked him to leave. And he DID go and get her help, which, I suspect, was also precisely what Klaus wanted him to do . . .
Meanwhile, an adorable wasted Elena and Matt tumble out of the tomb, in search of Caroline. Just as they find her, Stefan knocks Matt unconscious, and steals Elena away, without so much as a “Happy Birthday,” to Dying Caroline. Way to be a gentleman, ASSHAT!
Next thing we know, Stefan is speeding down the highway with a kidnapped, and super pouty, Elena. He wants to drive her down to the bridge where they first met . . . you know, back when her parents drowned, and he rescued her? Ahh . . . memories. In fact, Stefan wants to take reliving those memories all the way to the next level, by DRIVING OVER THE BRIDGE, AND DROWNING WITH ELENA . . .
Damon calls Elena for some phone sex, and is not-at-all pleased that his brother has picked up the phone. He becomes even less pleased, when he learns what exactly Crazy!Stefan plans to do.
In an odd turn of events, Damon suddenly finds himself on the same side as Klaus. He runs to warn his new friend, of what’s happening. “Get rid of your hybrids, or he’s going to kill Elena,” Damon says, more or less.
“Sometimes, I wish YOU were my brother . . . you know . . . aside from the whole, leaving your siblings in coffins for 1,000’s of years . . . thing.”
Initially, Klaus isn’t concerned. He believes that Stefan ultimately loves Elena WAY too much to kill her. So, therefore, he must be bluffing. But when Klaus calls Stefan on the phone, he hears Elena’s anguished screams . . . screams which sound so very real. Then he hears Stefan, do the one thing, that to Elena, is worse than killing her out right, he force feeds her his blood . . . the exact same action for which he attacked Damon, last season.
Now, Klaus seemed fairly certain that Stefan wouldn’t kill Elena. But he’s much less certain he won’t turn her into a vampire, thereby making yet another Petrova Doppelganger useless as a human blood bank / hybrid making machine. This is a HUGE deal. After all, Klaus had to wait 500 years after Katherine turned vamp, for another opportunity to become / make hybrids. Who knows how long he’ll have to wait next time around?
Watching Klaus cry, as he hears Elena’s screams of terror, you could almost imagine that he really does care about her, as more than just a blood bank. And maybe he does. After all, Klaus has romantic history with two girls, who look exactly like Elena. So, it’s not hard to imagine that some of that tenderness has translated over to this new doppelganger, who’s so very important to him, in so many ways.
At the last possible minute, (once Klaus agrees to get his hybrids out of Mystic Falls, of course) Stefan stops the car. Oddly enough, despite having gone through the last few minutes with Elena, this guy seems truly confused, as to why she won’t back into the car with him.
Stefan’s speech to Elena is interesting, because it causes you to question just how much of his “No Emotions” thing, is an act, while, at the same time, illustrates just how insensitive and hard-hearted his experiences with Klaus have made him.
Stefan explains to Elena that she and Damon HAD to believe that he was really going to kill her / and/ or turn her into a vampire, to convince Klaus of the same thing. And if all that was an act, maybe the rest of it was too. After all, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time Stefan pretended not to care about Elena, in order to protect her.
On the other hand, as Elena tearfully explains, Stefan traumatized her, beyond belief, by forcing her to relive the moment of her parents death. And the fact that Stefan could make her do this, without giving so much as a thought to the mental and emotional impact it would have on her, shows him to not be the same guy with whom she fell so madly in love, a few years back.
Stefan digs the knife deeper, by telling Elena that defeating Klaus is all he has left, pointedly leaving both Damon and Elena out of that equation. He also tells Elena that they’ve been “over,” since he left Mystic Falls, and that he doesn’t care what she thinks about him, anymore. Of course, his facial expressions, when he says this, say otherwise.
Then, the Poopyhead drives off, leaving Elena in the middle of the road, for Damon to rescue . . . again. That’s right, boys and girls. Stefan Salvatore is on Team Delena. And, as awful a dude as he’s been lately, I certainly can’t fault him for that.
Speaking of Delena . . .
The Kiss Raincheck? 🙂
Throughout the hour, we’ve been waiting for Damon and Elena to address their epic liplock. Now, fittingly enough, they get to do so, in the exact same spot, where the infamous smooch occurred. Let’s rewatch, shall we?
I must admit, on first watch, I was disappointed that Elena rebuffed Damon’s sweet facial caresses, and soulful love eyes, with her, “You can’t kiss me again.”
It also reminded me of that little Dawson’s Creek moment, I shared with you last week. You know, the one where Pacey told Joey that he couldn’t keep kissing her, because he’d already made his feelings known. So, if she wanted their relationship to continue, she would have to kiss him?
In essence, I think that is what Damon and Elena are both saying to one another, here. From Elena’s perspective, it wouldn’t be fair for her to accept another one of Damon’s mind-blowing kisses on THIS night, when her heart is so very raw, from where Stefan stamped on it. Despite her obviously strong feelings for Damon, if she let him kiss her right now, it would be more about Stefan than it would be about Damon. And Elena cares enough about Damon to know that he doesn’t deserve that . . .
The next time Damon and Elena kiss, it should be all about THEM, just like it was the first time.
From Damon’s perspective, he, like a certain Pacey Witter, knows that their next kiss must be Elena-initiated. And it needs to come at time, when Elena is finally genuinely OK with what happened between her and Stefan. He loves and respects Elena enough to wait for that moment to come. He’s also confident enough in her love for him, to know that it WILL come eventually . . .
Dreaming of Delena . . .
And, if the longing look Elena gave Damon at the end of this scene, and her words to Matt at the end of the episode are any indication, that moment will probably come sooner, rather than later . . .
Coming from a Hardcore Delena and Forwood shipper, you might be surprised to know that I found this the most fascinating moment of this episode. It was both surprising, and, at the same time, telegraphed from the very first scene. Most intriguing of all was the fact that Klaus’ motives for doing what he did are still not entirely certain.
On one hand, it certainly seems as though Klaus told Tyler to bite Caroline, knowing, full well that he would initially say no, and then, inadvertently end up doing it, anyway. At first, most of us fans, probably felt that this was done to show the Scooby Gang that Klaus means business, just as the attempted murder of Jeremy did, last week. However, on second glance, it seems more likely that Klaus only got Tyler to bite Caroline, so that he could ultimately save her.
The question is, why did he go through all this trouble to do that, for a girl with whom, up to this point, he has had little to no interaction? Does he truly care about her as much as he seems to, in this clip?
Or maybe because she looks so much like his sister (the other Vampire Barbie), or, perhaps, like someone he once loved? Has he coveted her all along, and merely been using Tyler to get to her?
Or, was all this merely a way, of keeping Tyler in line, by breaking him of the one person, who potentially had the power to keep him from being completely loyal? Also, having someone, like Caroline, who is so intimately linked to Stefan’s inner circle beholden to him, certainly can’t hurt Klaus’ plans for continued Elena usage, and world domination? The coy way, in which Klaus caresses the bracelet Tyler gave her for birthday (He ultimately gives her a much nicer, more expensive piece of jewelry, himself.) could be interpreted either way . . .
But whether you are Team Klaroline, or Team Forwood, you have to admit that these two are pretty darn sexy together . . . And here I thought death bed flirting was only hot , when Delena was doing it. Shows, how much I know . . .
Bye, Bye Jer Bear!
After Caroline gets her bracelet, things wrap up pretty quickly. Jeremy gets shipped off to Denver, without much fanfare. And Bonnie, for all her complaints and hand-wringing, when it actually comes time for him to leave, merely, hugs him goodbye.
Don’t worry, Jeremy. You’ll be back. The ones that don’t die ALWAYS comeback. (Come to think of it, so do the ones that DO die . . .)
Here Lies Elena Gilbert (a.k.a. Funeral 4) . . .
We follow up this tearful Jer Bear moment, with a surprisingly sweet one between Matt and Elena on that fateful Bridge of DEATH. Elena notes sadly that her former self might be disappointed with her current self, a girl in love with VAMPIRES (That’s right, I said “vampires” PLURAL . . .
The Matt we USED to know, would have probably agreed with Elena. But New Matt, was much kinder, giving Old Elena a “funeral,” so that she might be able to embrace her new crazy life, one which, though he might not fully understand, he does support, because he . . . wait for it . . . wants her to be happy.
Way to go, Matt! (I can’t believe I just typed those words . . . I must be going crazier than Stefan . . .)
Speaking of crazy . . .
Here Lies Crazy Nanny Carrie’s Victim Preppy Medical Examiner Guy . . . (a.k.a. Funeral 5)
Question: If the only Medical Examiner in town gets whacked, who gets to determine his Cause of Death?
While Alaric proceeds to get Day Drunk with Crazy Nanny Meredith, Lizard Forbes and her once-again pal Damon go traipsing in the forest to locate yet another of Mystic Falls growing list of Dead Unimportant Characters. This time its . . . surprise . . . Preppy Medical Examiner Guy . . . as in, the same one Crazy Nanny Meredith talked about tossing over a bridge, and the same one that Alaric publicly tussled with the night before. He’s got a stake in his chest, the victim of one of those rare things in Mystic Falls: the HUMAN KILL.
He stole Bonnie’s nose bleed. BASTARD!
Do, I suspect a Crazy Nanny Meredith Murder, followed by an Alaric Saltzman frame-up, possibly to avenge the death of an odious weatherman named Logan Fell? You bet I do!
And that was “Our Town,” in a Nutshell. Next week, on TVD: Tyler gets chained up and naked again, Crazy Nanny Meredith shows her true colors, and Bonnie appears to be bleeding from her nasal passages again. Hooray! You can check out the Canadian and American trailers for this episode, entitled “The Ties that Bind,” here: