Tag Archives: Matt Davis

TV Land in Fall 2012 – Why it’s getting LOST (in a good way)

“We have to go back!”

In the weeks between spring finale time, and the summer television season, TV fans tend to do one of two things: (1) reflect on seasons past or; (2) look ahead to the new season.  As for me, my intention in writing this post was to do the latter.  But I ended up doing quite a bit of the former, as well.

Allow me to explain.  You see, having recently watched all the new trailers from this years’ network upfronts, my original goal was to select the five new series with the most potential to end up on my new 2012/2013 TV roster, and review their trailers.  However, after I made my selections, it occurred to me that all of the series I chose shared one interesting commonality: Lost.

You guys remember Lost, right?  You know, the show about the plane crash, where the writers promised that the characters weren’t in Purgatory, until the last season, when it kind of / sort of turned out that was exactly where they were . . .

Why?   Personally, I think these shows failed because they focused too much on trying to emulate the crazy plot twists, erudite literary references,  and rampant conspiracy theories of the older series, while virtually ignoring the one thing that really made Lost shine .  . . its characters.  After all, before all the flashbacks, flash-sideways,  and flash forwards . . . before the polar bears, Hurley birds, and omniscient dogs . . . before there were Others, Dharma Initiatives, donkey wheels, hatches, and secret videos starring a guy with one arm . .  . Lost was simply about fourteen fascinating people, who just so happened to be flying on the same ill-fated plane.

As I mentioned earlier, all five of the news series on my Most Likely to Watch list all seem to possess certain qualities that make them seem particularly Lost-like.  (Well, actually four of them do.  But I’ll get to why I chose the fifth one, in a bit.)  The question is, will any of these series be able to pull off the unique mix of script, characters, plot, and mystery necessary to become TV’s Next Big Thing?

Let’s analyze, shall we?

666 Park Avenue – ABC

Clearly, the most obvious connection between 666 Park Avenue and Lost is this guy . . .

Terry O’Quinn . . . a.k.a John Locke.  In a clever  (and possibly slightly tongue-and-cheek) bit of casting “the producers of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars” have opted to hire Oceanic Flight 815’s resident Man of Fate, Denizen of Destiny, and an eventual alter ego for The Black Smoke Monster / a.k.a. The Man in Black to play the Devil.  So now we know that at least one character on this show will be exceptionally well-acted.  But stunt casting alone is not enough to make for a successful show.

As for the concept of the series, intriguing as it is, it’s nothing new.  1997’s The Devil’s Advocate boasts a similar premise, in which the Devil takes Manhattan, and faces off against a similarly upwardly mobile late twenties to early-thirty something couple, by tempting them with riches, and only partially disclosing their true cost . . .

And yet in 1997 we weren’t reeling from a recession caused by the burst of a very large real estate bubble.  What better time to explore a television series in which the much maligned 1%ers actually ARE evil incarnate?  So, the series boasts not only a solid cast (Vanessa L. Williams also stars), but also a timely premise.  But there are other Lostian aspects this show offers, which could end up making it a success, if the writers handle them correctly.

Just like that “other show,” 666 Park Avenue offers an over-arching mystery, along with some tantalizing questions that, if producers play their cards right, viewers can chew over and discuss for seasons to come.  What exactly is the Devil doing in real estate?  What happened to the last managers of the Drake Apartments (I think most of us know the answer to that already.  “Warmer climates?”  HA!)  What’s the deal with the dragon etched on the basement floor?  And, perhaps, most importantly,  what are the HOA fees for living in a place like that?

But what’s really going to make or break 666 Park Avenue, I think, is its cast of characters.  Lost explored the lives and backstories of its various survivors with great sensitivity, and depth.  666 Park Avenue has the opportunity to do the same thing with its various apartment tenants.  Who are these people who live in the Drake?  What drives them, and what ultimately enticed them to sell their soul for some extra square footage, a view of Central Park, and an on-site gym?

Only time will tell . . .

CULT – THE CW

Folks who have spent these past few weeks wondering what happened to vampire-slaying history teacher, Alaric Saltzman, after he croaked on The Vampire Diaries, can breathe a sigh of relief now . . .

Though often written off as a “teen television” channel, over the past few years, the CW has enjoyed a surprising amount of success producing shows for a slightly younger, hipper audience who are seeking series that are a bit darker, and grittier than your typical “bright and shiny” network fare.  And from the looks of it, Cult might just prove to be the darkest and grittiest of them all.  Just watching the trailer gave me chills . . . probably because that TV Guy / Possible Cult Leader looks and sounds like a cross between Hannibal Lecter, Kevin Spacey’s character in Seven, and, of course, Benjamin Linus from Lost . . .

But of course, Cult shares more in common with Lost than just an average-looking, kind of creepy, but still oddly charismatic, intellectual type, who might be a cult leader.  Much like it’s predecessor, Cult will offer its fans countless conspiracy theories, clues to unravel, mysterious happenings to be explained, lots of oddly dressed folks with dubious motives to puzzle over, and most importantly, confusing, but compulsively rewatchable, YouTube videos . . .

What intrigues me most about Cult is how unabashedly “meta” it seems to be.  I mean, here is a show that blatantly eviscerates the one thing it needs to survive as a series: a diehard fandom.  This, of course, begs the question, could Lost fans be driven to commit murder, simply because Benjamin Linus asked them to do so?  Well, maybe if he asked really nicely . . .

Revolution – NBC

Here’s another timely premise, in light of the world’s increasing dependence on technology to survive (not to mention Facebook’s catastrophic failure as a stock IPO.)  Imagine a world completely without technology, that’s populated by folks like us, who can’t remember a time before the existence internet, and who can’t let a day go by, without checking our e-mail, sending a text message, or asking SIRI if it’s raining outside.

Of all the shows on my new TV viewing roster, this J.J. Abrams-produced one probably wins the prize for being the most Lost-like.  Let’s see, we’ve got an unexplained supernatural phenomenon and/or terrorist act, that has cut off our main characters from technology,  a sustainable food source, and the benefits of generalized medicine, forcing them to spend hours wandering aimlessly in the woods, looking dirty . . . and hot . . .

We’ve got repeated flashbacks to a climactic event, which, when viewed together, at the end of the series should explain everything . . . almost.  We’ve got various factions of people, some who want things to remain as they are now, and others who want to “go back” to the way things once were . . .

We’ve got snarky rogue-loners, who begin the series looking out only for themselves, but inevitably “learn to love” and become the series’ obvious unlikely heroes . . .

We’ve got nerdy professor types who spend the entire series looking vaguely confused, while trying to “figure it all out.”

Heck, we even have weird ancient-looking symbols, and those dopey, green-screen computers from the 80’s . . .

But beyond all those superficial similarties, I think “Revolution” has the potential to be a true character study,  just as Lost was.  After all, nothing exhibits the true nature of a person better, then putting them in a completely unfamiliar situation, without the benefits or camouflage  that modern-day luxuries provide.  In the words of Hugo “Hurley” Reyes, “DUUUUUUUUDE.”

The Last Resort – ABC

Forget, “You sunk my battleship.”  Something tells me, come this fall, everybody will be yelling at their TV screens, “YOU SUNK MY SUBMARINE!”  If Revolution is the series that most resembles Lost in terms of plot points, The Last Resort most resembles its tone, high production values, and cinematic quality.  In fact, if I hadn’t spied the ABC logo on the corner of screen, I could have sworn this was war movie.  Heck, they even hired That Movie Guy with the Oddly Deep Voice to do the narration!  Conspiracy theorists, war aficionados, and political pundits alike will find much to love in this series, which, like it’s famous predecessor will revolve around an international cover-up  . . .

. . . the result of which will strand our main characters on an island, separating them from the people they love, and putting their lives in constant imminent danger . . .

Hey, this place even looks like Lost island.  Where’s Vincent the Dog?   WAAAAAAAAALT! 

And of course, there will inevitably be dealings with “those pesky others.”

But mostly, I’ll just be watching this one, because Ben from Felicity will be there . . .

Speaking of completely shallow reasons to watch a television program . . .

Chicago Fire – NBC

At the beginning of this post, I admitted to you that really only four of the five series I chose for my Watch List were like Lost.  Chicago Fire doesn’t resemble Lost at all . . . unless you count the repeated obligatory shots of Sometimes dirty-faced and slightly bloody cocky alpha males who never met a shirt they actually liked to wear . . .

I’d be lying if I said the prospect of having a naked Taylor Kinney on my television screen every week, wasn’t a big draw for my choosing Chicago Fire for this blog post.  But personally I think the trailer for this series boasts more than good looking shirtless guys with bad attitudes.  The in-fighting between the squad members, caused in part by the oh-so-cliched concept of The Fallen Comrade shows promise for solid character development.  The kickass females in the series make my feminist heart proud.  And if done right, those inevitable Burning Building sequences are going to look really awesome in HD.

Besides, who doesn’t love a man in uniform . . . or out of it?

And there you have it folks, my five Lostian . . . and not so Lostian picks for the best new shows of Fall 2012.  So, what’s on YOUR Must Watch List?

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under 666 Park Avenue, Chicago Fire, Cult, Lost, Revolution, The Last Resort

“So what? I’m still a Vampire!” – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ Season Finale “The Departed”

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NOT choosing between all these hot vampires, who love me unconditionally, all season was EXHAUSTING.  I need a nap!  Wake me before the final credits roll, OK?”

So what?  I’m still a Rockstar.  I’ve got my rock moves.  And I don’t neeeeed youuuuuu.”

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Pink’s classic single-girl anthem “Rockstar” initially seemed like an odd choice to kick off the Season 3 Finale of The Vampire Diaries.  For one thing, here’s a show that’s made a name for itself by specializing in sad and/or moodily haunting songs, written by virtually unknown artists, just on the cusp of making it big.  Pink is hardly an unknown artist.  And as for moodily haunting, “Rockstar” is probably one of her peppiest ditties to date.

Also, I don’t think there’s a woman on television who’s more patently un-accustomed to the Single Life than Elena Gilbert: She Who is Loved By All. Plus, let’s be honest, I’m kind of shocked they got the rights to play it.

However, in hindsight, the song choice made a lot of sense.  Because while the moody, mopey, perpetually waffling between two vampires, “Everyone around me is dying, let’s paint some walls,” Elena we know and love probably wouldn’t be caught dead (no pun intended) rocking out to anything remotely resembling a dance beat . . .

“Hey!  I resent that!  I do rock out . . . once a season . . . at my school’s annual Bloodbath Prom.   Take that, you mean recapper, you!”

 .  . .  her two-years younger, cheerleading, pony-tail wearing, Matt Donovan-dating, “Nothing bad ever happens in Mystic Falls” self absolutely would!

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And when you think about it, that’s really what “The Departed” was about . . . comparing Elena’s pre and post vampire worlds, and recognizing that they might not be quite as different from one another as we originally thought . . . You know, aside from the whole “Constantly in Danger / On the Verge of Death,” thing . . .

So tighten up your ponytail, hike up your skirt, and take a nice long drive off the very short Wickory Bridge, because it’s time for another TVD-cap .  . .

(Special thanks to my good pal, Andre for providing me with an entire season of the most amazing screencaps ever invented.  If you were a vampire, I’d put your soul into somebody else’s body, so you wouldn’t ever have to croak.  That’s how appreciative I am!)

“Caroline thinks my ponytail lacks zchuzz” (By the way, I must have sat for at least ten minutes, trying to figure out how that word was spelled.)

Like so many episodes of TVD, this one begins with Elena groggily waking up to the sound of her alarm, and undoubtedly looking like she wants to slit her wrist on her bedside table . . . usually because one of her friend’s (or an attractive guest star) died in the previous episode or is destined to die in this one.

“I told you not to wake me until the end credits, DAMMIT!” 

But wait!  Are my eyes deceiving me?  Is our girl Elena actually . . . smiling and bobbing her head up and down to pop music?

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Oh, I get it!  This isn’t regular Elena, it’s her sassy alter ego, Ponytail Elena.   This makes a lot more sense now . . .

But why is she wearing the Glee Cheerios uniform?

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QUINN: “I hate that b*tch.  She stole my man.”

SANTANA: “I hate her too.  She stole my woman.”

BRITTANY: (offscreen) “Unicorn?” 

Clearly, I’ve stumbled into some Alternate Universe Crossover Fanfiction of some sort.  Either that, or this is the start of another . . . wait for it . . . Flashback Episode.

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That’s right, Fangbangers!  Meet Elena Gilbert, the peppy popular high school cheerleader, with the clean-cut jock boyfriend, the twerpy little brother, and two uncommonly hot parents, who both love and support her unconditionally.

“Aren’t you glad both of us will be dead, long before we could ever get wrinkles?”

 I feel like I’ve stumbled into a Tampon Commercial .  . . or one for Teen Spirit Deodorant.  Now, all I need is for Elena to say something like, “At school, I work hard, but I also PLAY HARD!”

ELENA: “Psst . . . Matt, I’m not wearing any underwear under my skirt.”

MATT: “Psst . . . I’m wearing a skirt, under my underwear.”

BONNIE: *judging you*

“Caroline thinks my ponytail lacks schuzz,” Elena pouts, as she walks toward Mystic Falls High with fellow cheerleader Bonnie Bennett.

Matt’s there too, with his varsity jacket,  butterfly kisses, and references to the dreaded L Word.  In short, he’d be the Greatest Boyfriend Ever . . . if his mere presence didn’t seem to put Elena to sleep.

Bonnie chastens Elena for “stringing Matt along,” when it’s quite clear she doesn’t share his feelings for her.  In other words, Bonnie is judgmental in Flashback Land too.  Something NEVER change . . .

“I’m so going to give that Recapper a piece of my migraine!” 

RECAPPER: *takes an Aspirin*

Meanwhile, in the FUTURE . . .

“Have I told you lately how much I appreciate your not being the dumbest brother on Earth?”

Future/Present / Non-ponytail Elena wakes up in a hospital bed after the dramatic, nosebleedy faceplant she did at the end of last week’s episode.

Ahh . .  . waking up miserable.  Now THERE’S the Elena I know and love . . . 

(At this point, Jeremy probably has the ambulance on speed dial.)  Mini Gilbert is understandably concerned about his sister’s newfound tendency to make out with home flooring.  However the Only Doctor in Mystic Falls, Crazy Nanny Carrie, tells him not to worry.   “Just a itsy bitsy concussion . . . nothing to worry about.”

“I’ll just bash her face in with a hammer, like I do all my other patients.  She’ll be good as new in no time.”

Jeremy calls Elena’s two vampire lovers to let them know what went down.  Both Stefan and Damon are absolutely furious with Jeremy for trusting traditional modern medicine.  (Clearly, they must be closet Christian Scientists or something.)

STEFAN: “I think we’ve spent about half the season in this car.”

DAMON: “Tell me about it.  It’s a good thing vampires never have to pee.” 

“Get her out of there,” they exclaim practically in unison, realizing that keeping Elena in a public place makes her a sitting duck for .  . . oh, I don’t know .  .  . EVERY VILLAIN WHO’S EVER BEEN ON THE SHOW, EVER!  (Then again, it’s not like they all don’t know where she lives.)

 

Did I mention that Damon and Stefan are still roadtripping to make Klaus’ body swim with the fishies hide Klaus’ body?  Honestly, in hindsight, I’m kind of glad The Brothers Awesomesauce decided to scrap their original, wetter, plan to dispose of Klaus.  What if Klaus’ dry, flaky, desperately in need of lotion, body was devoured by a hungry shark . . . or a really ambitious school of goldfish?  Then, the whole entire cast would die, and they would have to rename the show “Ghost Diaries.”

“I ain’t afraid of no ghost vamp.”

Upon getting off the phone with Jeremy, Damon, who’s been especially brother-bondy with Stefan lately, praises the latter’s intelligence .  . . or, perhaps more accurately, his lack of utter stupidity. “Have I ever told you how much I appreciate the fact that I don’t have the dumbest brother in the world?” Damon quips.

Awww!  That’s sweet.  You know, it’s really too bad that no one ever decided to make Brother’s Day a national holiday.  Because, that would have made a really great statement for the inside of a Hallmark card.

Back at the hospital, Nouveau Ric has gotten wind of Elena’s whereabouts . . . though he may have had to show some poor lonely EMT his Chunky Monkey to get that information . . .

“My eyes aren’t the only part of me that has vampire compulsion powers.” 

He corners his erstwhile sex buddy Crazy Nanny Carrie and demands that Elena be released to his custody, as her legal guardian.  He also tells her that P.S. she’s fired.  WHAT?  You can’t fire Crazy Nanny Carrie, Alchy Ric!  I told you, she’s the ONLY DOCTOR IN MYSTIC FALLS!

“You can’t fire ME!  I’m Paul Wesley’s wife Meredith Fell!”

Also . . . I hate to break this to you Nouveau Ric but uhhh . . . you’re dead and have no authority whatsoever.

Nevertheless, to add insult to injury, Nouveau Ric quickly locates Crazy Nanny Carrie’s healing vampire blood stash, and DUMPS IT ALL ON THE FLOOR!

“How dare you fill these shot glasses with a non-alcoholic beverage!  That’s just wasteful!” 

Crazy Nanny starts to cry, thus proving she’s not quite the cyborg we always thought she was.

You know I’d have a heck of a lot easier time feeling sorry for the Good Doctor if she didn’t hide her Most Important Medical Miracle, in an UNLOCKED FOOD MINI FRIDGE, right next to her Lean Pockets and Dannon Yogurt Cups.

Honestly, she would have been better off putting it inside her bra or down her pants.  After all, I’d willing to bet that, since Alaric “died,” no one has ventured inside there at all.  Also, not to nitpick (just kidding, I’m totally nitpicking), but did you see how little blood she had left in there?  I’ve had shots of tequila with more total fluid ounces than her entire stash!

Where did this woman go to medical school that she thinks this is an appropriate amount of blood to take from someone? Munchkinland?

Crazy Nanny Carrie’s apparent incompetence aside, by the time Nouveau Ric reaches Elena’s hospital bedside she’s . . . wait for it . . . already long gone.  SURPRISE!

“Nothing wrong with free will!”

Back at the Gilbert house, Caroline, Tyler, Jeremy and Matt are all babysitting Elena.  Caroline offers the recently concussed and drained of blood tea and vodka to help her sleep.  (Mix in some soda, a little triple sec, and a bit of that tequila she had last night, and she could have a Long Island Iced Tea.  It’s just what the doctor ordered!)

“All the best tea comes from Long Island.” 

Wait . . . correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t you NOT supposed to sleep when you get a severe brain hemorrhage concussion?  I swear I remember reading that somewhere.  Man, Crazy Nanny Carrie really is the worst doctor ever!

But hey, it isn’t TVD, if Elena isn’t constantly in danger right?  So, sleep again, Elena does.  When she awakens, Caroline and Tyler have left on an emergency call (more on that later), leaving Matt as the soul Mr. Mom of Casa Gilbert. (Jeremy, the “breadwinner” is out getting food.)

With her flashback / dream still fresh in her mind, Elena chooses now to apologize to Matt for sort of/ kind of leading him on when she was 15.  It does seem like a rather odd time for an apology.  And Matt quickly conjectures that this whole conversation really has less to do with Elena’s and Matt’s relationship, than it does with Elena’s and her vampire entourage.

Now, not to bash Elena or anything, but am I the only one who found Elena’s apology a little insulting from Matt’s perspective?  I mean, sure, she used some “nice” words to say it.  But when it came right down to it, wasn’t Elena really telling her ex this:  “I’m sorry I continued to suck face with you, even though you, quite honestly, bored me to tears.  And I had no romantic feelings for you whatsoever.  Now would you mind helping me choose between the two men I REALLY love?”

“You’re right, Recapper!  WTF!  Now I’m pissed.” 

My own interpretations of the situation aside, Matt seemed to take the whole thing quite well . . . acting all “understanding and supportive,” through the whole monologue, until Stefan came bounding through the door, in true “speak of the devil,” fashion.  (Then again, Matt did purposefully drug Elena later in the episode.  So, maybe  just maybe, he wasn’t quite as OK with all this rejection, as he pretended to be . . .)

It looks like Matt might have accidentally drugged himself too . . . 

Meanwhile, over at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, Nouveau Ric (for whom this is probably his first time at the bar sober) promptly corners Jeremy.  He then makes a surprisingly convincing case for the latter turning over Klaus’ body, and getting Elena out of dodge for a “Vampire Free Life.”

Super Hero Hair on Super Villain Head

Vampire the Vampire Slayer even volunteers to allow Bonnie to desiccate his body, so that Elena can live out her natural life, and he will no longer be a threat to anyone (Then again, all the IMPORTANT vampires . . . except Elijah and Rebekah . . . will pretty much be dead anyway, so an un-desiccated Nouveau Ric would just be bored).  Jeremy, who’s been becoming more than a bit anti-vampite himself lately,  seems more than a bit receptive to Nouveau Ric’s suggestion.

“You just look so different, Vampire Ric.   Have you gone tanning recently?”

But would he be willing to betray his sister and everyone she loves, in order to accomplish it?  We’ll know soon enough . . .

Back at the Gilbert House, an old familiar friend has stopped by to catch up.  It’s ELIJAH!  And dare I say, he’s looking fabulous . . .

Elijah has come to . . . wait for it . . . make a deal, with the Scooby Gang, in return for Klaus’ body.  Wait a second.  I think I heard this joke before.  And I didn’t particularly like the punchline.

Don’t get me wrong, I love you, Elijah.  You will always be my favorite Original.  But let’s be honest with ourselves.  Your “deals” always SUCK ASS!

“Lunch?”

Damon, who’s been conveniently dialed into the meeting on speaker phone seems to agree with me . . .

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That said, you’ve got to admit that, just like Nouveau Ric, Elijah drives a hard bargain. (Then again, maybe it’s just the hypnotic sound of his super sexy voice that makes me want to just mindless agree with everything he says.)

Elijah offers total and complete protection from ALL the Originals for the rest of Elena’s natural life, and the lives of her children and grandchildren.  (In hindsight, all this talk about Elena’s “natural life” and her “having babies,” were like neon flashing lights over her head that just SCREAMING Soon-To-Be-Vampire.)  Only when Grandkiddy Elena finally croaked would Elijah finally reawaken Klaus.   “You have my word,” he said . . . again.

(Note: If there was ever an Elijah Talking Doll, one of the phrases it would always say, when you pulled the string on it’s back, would be “You have my word,” the others would be, “There is honor in revenge,” “You cannot beat me,” and, my personal favorite, “Hello Elenaaaah.”)

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“It’s a shame you and I never hooked up.  We would have the most polite and sophisticated sex ever.”

Elijah may be winning over his fanbase, but a good percentage of the Scooby Gang is still not down with his plan.  Damon wonders out loud, whether inhaling all the pain fumes last week gave Elena brain damage.  I’ve wondered this about Elena a few times myself.  And Matt, who’s been pretty quiet up until this point, suddenly looks like his eyes are about to pop out of his head, and roll across the kitchen floor, like in those old Bugs Bunny cartoons, when the pretty girl bunny walks by.  “WHY SHOULD SHE TRUST YOU?” He yelps.

“Duuuuuuude . . .” 

Why indeed .  . .

But Elena’s question for Elijah goes a bit deeper than that.  “Why do you want his body, so badly?” She wonders.

“He’s my brother.  We remain together,” Elijah replies matter-of-factly.

Oh, that was smooth, Elijah! You know full well that this crowd can’t turn down a statement of “brotherly love.”

Elena’s heart immediately turns to mush.  She’s blinking a lot, and making googly eyes at her brother.  Before the words, “You have a deal,” come out of Elena’s mouth, we already know that Team Original has won . . . this round, anyway . . .

Later, Jeremy gripes to Stefan about the ridiculousness of Elena’s decision.  Once again, Stefan clearly disagrees with a choice that Elena has made (Heck, everyone in the gang seems to disagree with it, except her and Elijah.). And once again, he says nothing.  Wussy pants  “Nothing wrong with free will,” Stefan explains sagely.  “You’d understand that if you ever had it taken away from you.”

“Anyone have a bib I could borrow . . . or a neck?” 

But Stefan’s been this way, since long before Klaus compelled him to turn on his emotions.  He always seems to blindly go along with Elena’s half-cocked plans, so as to seem agreeable, and not to start a fight with her.  It’s a fundamental difference we’ve seen between Damon and Stefan, one that the two of them discussed briefly back in “The Last Dance” episode,  and will discuss again before the episode is over.

In fact, Stefan willingness to ALWAYS go along with Elena’s wishes literally costs her her life at the end of the episode . . .

I don’t know.  I feel like there has to be a happy medium in relationships between strong arming and bullying your beloved, just because you can, and rolling over and playing dead, every time your better half makes a controversial decision.

To me, the best couples are the ones that fight and duke it out about the things that matter to them most . . . trying to get the other person to see their way, for better or worse.  .

Sometimes you win, and sometimes you lose.  But not getting your way, is not the same thing as not having free will.  Not by a longshot . . .

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OK, now that I’m off my soapbox, it’s time for some FORWOOD!

“Just you . . . and maybe a curling iron.”

Last week, Nouveau Ric outed Mayor Lockwood and Sheriff Lizard Forbes for harboring vampire /hybrid kids.  The heads of the Vampire Killing Council (that never, ever kills any vampires) both breastfed future vampires!  Oooh!  Que Escandalo!  This is some seriously juicy stuff . . . like the Mystic Falls equivalent of a sex tape leaked on YouTube.

“Wait until they find out about our demon baby lovechild . . .”

I found it kind of funny and ironic, how the Mayor and the Sheriff encouraged, even INSISTED that their barely legal children run off together to lord knows where, for a life of nonstop sex, and blood drinking.  I mean, of course, they didn’t want their kids pitchforked by the members of their own town.  But the fact that neither parent even thought to offer to come WITH their kids, was kind of strange, and  a little shocking to me.

“We promise to call you from the road . . . after we’ve robbed a few banks for shopping money.” 

And of course, the newly reunited Forwood pair was just ecstatic about the concept of running away together.  In fact, they barely managed to refrain from ripping one another’s clothes off, while their respective moms were still in the room!

You know, I teased Caroline and Tyler a lot this season, about having a sort of puppy-in-heat-leg-humping relationship . . . lots of hot sex and very little talking, apart from the occasional grunt and growl.

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But these past few episodes, have included a lot of really fun relationship moments for these two!  In short, these horny puppies are growing up . . . though, arguably, in that last scene between them . . . well . . . I’m getting ahead of myself.

Anywhoo, once apart from their parents, Tyler and Caroline begin to chart out their future as Bonnie Vampire and Clyde Hybrid.  They discuss what they need to pack . . . a few clothes and a curling iron.  (Hey, at least won’t need condoms!)  “Let me protect you,” Tyler says, solemnly, grasping his lover by the shoulders.

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But Caroline can’t leave town yet, because she has to . . . wait for it . . . SAVE ELENA.

The minute Tyler and Caroline made a pact to meet one another in two hours,  I knew things were about to go south.  I mean, come on you too, don’t you watch TV?  Don’t you know that by planning to meet at some indiscriminate future time, you are pretty much GUARANTEEING that one of you won’t make it?  I mean, let’s face it “I’ll see you in two hours,” is the romantic drama movie equivalent of horror movie classic lines like: “I’ll be right back.”  or “Let’s split up,” or “Come drunk girl with big boobs, let’s go out into the woods and have sex.  It will be FINE!”

Speaking of Best Laid Plans . . .

“You know what else was her idea?  Everything bad EVER!”

Jeremy and Matt, the sole representatives of Team Human, have a little pow wow on the Gilbert Porch.

They discuss the possibility of “going rogue,” and ratting out where Team Scooby buried Klaus.  Shortly thereafter, we see what we THINK is the result of that pow wow, when Jeremy calls Alaric with a location.  “You are doing the right thing for your sister,” Nouveau Ric says, in a voice that’s oddly paternal for a soulless sociopath.

Jeremy agrees, as he hangs up the phone.  Oooh . . . Jer Bear!  Bad Boy!  Judas of the Vampires!

But wait!  The camera just panned back, the whole Scoooby Gang is there.  It was all a trap!  You got me, TVD!  My faith in Team Human has been restored . . . for now, anyway.

Meanwhile, Damon and Bonnie, who have been surprisingly chummy, ever since she gave  the vampire brain freeze, and fed herself to her history teacher, are in a storage locker retrieving Klaus, toasted body, so that they can turn it over to Team Original, as part of the Great Vampire Truce of 2012. Damon gripes to Bonnie about how the rest of the gang is letting this happen AGAIN . . .

 Hey look!  It’s Klaus’ new apartment.  I wonder if he’s going to invite me in?”

“It’s Elena’s call,” Bonnie says diplomatically.

“You know what else is her call?   Everything BAD ever,” Damon quips.

Truer words have never been spoken.

“Yay . . . wait .  . . that was an insult, right?” 

Creepiness ensues, when they open Klaus’ coffin, and his eyes pop open.  Wasn’t expecting that.  All chained up, and pale, Klaus suddenly sort of looks like whatever vampire Johnny Depp is playing in that new movie Dark Shadows.  It’s not a good look for him.

Someone should really consider bringing this coffin to the tanning salon where Nouveau Ric’s been going . . . 

There’s this really weird moment that follows, once Bonnie is left alone with Klaus’ coffin.  She starts talking to him about how he’s very likely the source of the bloodline of all of her vampire friends . . . her mother’s blooline.   “I can’t kill you,” she says morosely.

Later on in the episode, we will learn just how far Bonnie will go to stay true to that statement . . .

“That’s the difference between you and me.”  Oh, and also, I’M AWESOME!

Back at the house, Stefan and Elena are having a moment.  He’s promising to come back to her.  She’s contemplating telling him about her Big Boyfriend Choice.  (Yeah . . . uh . . . Elena, this isn’t really the time for that.  We’ve still got Nouveau Ric problems.)  And yet, for a second, it seems like Elena might be prepping to kick Stefan to the curb.  My Delena heart is beating faster.  I’m excited.

Then Stefan rushes back to her room, and starts kissing Elena.  It’s probably one of the more impulsively passionate things we’ve seen the younger Salvatore brother do all season.  But it hasn’t changed my mind about who Elena should choose, of course.

“Tastes like chicken.” 

Speaking of Damon, he’s waiting outside to have yet another brotherly chat with Stefan.  As I mentioned, this conversation is a kinder gentler echo of the one they had back in “The Last Dance.”  Damon notes that he will always do whatever it takes to keep Elena alive, even if he has to drag her kicking and screaming to her salvation, and even if it makes her hate him.  Stefan . . . well . . . we all know how Stefan feels about this.  “That’s the difference between you and me,” remarks Damon thoughtfully.

That’s not the only difference, Damon . . .

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But it is a BIG difference, one who’s specter promises to haunt Season 4 in a BIG WAY . . .

Beef-jerkified Original

Now, we are back at Save-a-Vampire Storage Center.  Damon is waiting for Rebekah, so that he can hand over Klaus’ crunchy baked tortilla-like torso.  Unfortunately, someone else has crashed their party.  It’s Nouveau Ric!  He breaks Damon’s neck . . . again. Seriously, how many times has this poor guy had his head popped out of it’s socket, this season.  He must be practically a Pez dispenser by now . . .

Eventually Beks does find a now re-necked Damon.  But Nouveau Ric is still on the prowl.  So, Damon does that sexy kidnapper thing, where he wraps his arms around her, and covers her mouth to keep her save.  The fact that I always find this kind of behavior hot, disturbs me.  But hey, at least this time, it’s for a good cause . . .

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Last week, we saw Damon save Bonnie,  despite the fact that she’s often such a crazy b*atch, where he is concerned.  This week, we see him do the same thing for Beks.  It’s noteworthy, especially considering, how, at this point, Damon is pretty sure that he comes from Klaus’ bloodline, which would give him no personal motive for saving Rebekah.  It’s just the nice, Southern Gentleman thing to do . . .

But let’s not get too comfortable, folks.  Because Nouveau Ric has just found Klaus’ coffin.  And he wastes no time, popping it open, and shoving that Big Bad Dagger right in his heart.  It’s kind of a b*tch move, I’m not going to lie.  I mean, if stabbing someone in the back, so they can’t see you coming is cowardly, stabbing them when they are covered in 100 pounds of chain metal is Wuss Incarnate.

Hey look!  It’s a TUMS Antacid commercial.  Product placement anyone?

Still, the shock of seeing Klaus, Big Bad for Two Seasons Now, erupt into flames, without a single villain monologue, or fist-shaking declaration of revenge was probably the most shocking moment of the Season.  Rebekah is inconsolate.  It’s heart-wrenching to watch her like this.  Her history with her brother is complicated.  But, through it all, there was never any question that she loved him deeply.

Damon’s pretty depressed too.  I mean, he saw what happened to Sage, after Finn died.  It certainly didn’t look like a party.  Now, suddenly, he’s gone from the Man with the Plan to Undead Man Walking.

Then Nouveau Ric closes the coffin, without waiting to see if Klaus actually finishes burning.  Nouveau Ric is a MORON . . .  But we like morons on this show.  They keep our heroes alive.

“Sorry . . . I over honeyed.”

Back at the Gilbert house, Elena is still having her extended Golden Girls mini episode with Matt.  Hey Matt, newsflash, the rest of your friends are out fighting vampires, while your home putting too much honey in Elena’s tea.  Don’t look, now. But I think you might have just sprouted a va-jay-jay.

“And afterward, we can paint our toenails, put on mud masks, and sing Katy Perry songs into our hairbrushes!” 

In hindsight, the fact that Elena’s tea tasted crappy was meant to be “foreshadowing.”  But at the time, I was just thinking.

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“This tastes like our relationship.”

What guy puts honey in their tea, in the first place?

Matt, ever the glutton for punishment, wants to know what Elena loves so much about the Salvatores.  We’ve heard this one before.  Stefan makes her feel safe when he’s not threatening to bite her neck,or drive her off the Wickory Bridge.  She met him at a time when she needed him.  She sees their love as something “true and constant.”

Damon, on the other hand, gets under her skin.  When she’s with him, he consumes her.

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Which kind of love would YOU choose?

“You have a beautiful future ahead of you. Me?  Not so much . . .

It’s angst time, on TVD.  There’s lots of bad news to be spread, and uncomfortable conversations to be had.  Damon calls Stefan with the bad news.  It’s soulful crying all around.  Though both men are a bit confused as to why they aren’t bleeding from the nose or coughing like Rebekah was.  They know that one of them has to break the news to Elena that everyone she ever loved, more or less, might very well croak, within the next hour.  Or WILL they?

Stefan gets the honors, “Say goodbye for me,” Damon says solemnly.

Meanwhile at La Casa de TV Recapper, there’s a whole lot of Ugly Crying, and snotty sobs going on . . .

Over in the Sex Cave, Caroline and “Tyler” reunite.  She’s bawling her eyes out.  “Klaus died,” she sobs.

And we all know what that means for Tyler . . . and possibly Caroline too.  But this isn’t the “Tyler,” we met back in Season 1 (in more ways than one!).  This Tyler isn’t immature, or selfish.  He’s not going to place blame, or break down.  He stays strong for Caroline’s sake.  “You’re going to be fine.”  “Tyler” reassures Caroline. “I’m a lost cause.  But you are strong.  You have a beautiful future ahead of you.”

OK, in hindsight, this was a rather loaded monologue for our Alpha Male.  I never really considered Tyler the kind of guy, who would ever use the word “beautiful,” to describe anything without tits.

In fact, this sounds a lot more like something ANOTHER one of Caroline’s suitors would say . . .

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But in the moment, I genuinely felt the chemistry, the passion, the love, loss and longing of the scene.  It seemed real to me.  So, I ignored the warning signs.  I suspect others did too.  And that Presumed Last Kiss .  . . WHEW! Smokin!  We’ll get back to that a bit later.

Then “Tyler” starts coughing, presumably starting to feel the “death” effects of Klaus’ demise.  But Caroline is just peachy, which undoubtedly causes fans to wonder if her bloodline might have begun with another Original, after all.  Ever the stalwart girlfriend, Caroline is determined to stay by “Tyler’s” side, until his death, just like she did during his first werewolf transformation, nearly a year ago . . .

But in the words of Schmidt from New Girl, Tyler “White Fangs” Caroline by wolfing out on her ass, so that she will leave.

He seems determined to die alone.  Or DOES he?

Meanwhile, Rebekah and Elijah share a quiet tearful embrace over the loss of the brother they’ve known and loved for over 1,000 years, despite his many flaws.  (But wait . . . where’s Kol?)

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After the initial cryfest though, Rebekah and Elijah get down to the brass tacks of Plot Explanation.  They both admit to not being the sires of Scary Mary.  Neither, for that matter is Kol.  So, Klaus is the source of the Salvatore Bloodline after all!  But then why did Tyler “die,” while Caroline and the others are still alive.  The plot thickens . . .

“Maybe, if I met you first.”

More flashbacks . . . Elena’s at a party.  She had a fight with Matt, because she doesn’t want to get married and have babies at age 15!  (See?  I told you he was a woman.)

Speaking of Matt, Elena wakes up in a car next to him . . . destination unknown.  “You drugged me with crappy ass tea,” she says incredulously.

“Is this what you have to resort to in order to get laid these days?” 

“I’m getting you out of Vampire Town, once and for all,” Matt explains, more or less.

Then, they both get the call . . . the Dead Friend call . . . Suddenly, this isn’t just your average kidnapping . . . it’s a mass funeral.  “We have to go back!” Elena proclaims.  (How very Dr. Jack from Lost of her.)

The question is back to WHO?  Damon is back at the Save-a-Vampire-or-Watch-Him-Burn storage site, and Stefan is back home.  Elena has to  . . . wait for it . . . CHOOSE BETWEEN THE BROTHERS.  She calls Damon, to tell him she won’t be seeing him, before he croaks . . . if he croaks.  Ouch!

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But Elena has a good excuse.  Back home she has three-soon-to-be-dead friends: Stefan, Caroline, and Tyler (four, if you count Bonnie’s mom . . . which nobody does).  There, she just has one, super hot vampire lover.

However, Damon isn’t letting her off the hook that easily.  He wants to know what her choice would be, if it wasn’t just a matter of numbers.  She tells him.  Over in La Casa de TV Recapper, shoes, pillows and soda cans are thrown at the television screen.  You’re not going to actually make me say it, are you?

“I love him Damon.  I never unfell for him,” Elena expains.  (Oh, come on!  Un-fell . . . now that’s just bad grammar!)

“I care about you, which is why I have to let you go.  Maybe, if it was you I met first,” she explains, as she hangs up the phone.

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Damon morosely looks up from his own cell phone, and sees Nouveau Ric.  It’s time for another installment of Vampire Fight Club . . .

But wait . . . first Matt has to find out from Elena (who found out from Caroline) that “Tyler” died.  He may be a Golden Girl, but Matt Donovan’s surprisingly attractive cry face broke my heart.  “This isn’t how our lives were supposed to be,” Matt complains.  I agree, Matt!  Elena was supposed to pick Damon.  And you were supposed to NOT DRIVE ELENA OVER THAT DAMN BRIDGE.

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Elsewhere in “Everything is going to Hell Land,” Rebekah unilaterally decides that Klaus’ death means the brokerage of peace between Team Original and Team Regular Average Joe Vampire is officially over.  She vows to avenge her brother’s death, by killing Elena.

“May I wash your windows for a $1.00?” 

But wait . . . check this one out!  A not-so-dead Tyler meets up with Bonnie.  It turns out, he’s not Tyler at all, he’s KlausiTyler, who was conveniently witchily inserted into Real Tyler’s body shortly before that whole “burning thing.”

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Yeah, so remember last week, when Tyler said this . . .

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That didn’t work out so well for him, did it?

I must say, this was pretty clever, as far as plot twists go . . . (not to mention, probably the most daring thing Plot Device Bonnie has done all season). The writers got to keep Klaus as the sire of the Salvatore Bloodline, without actually killing ANY of the main cast.  Also, the fact that we never saw Klaus’ body fully burn, leaves an opening for HIS return as well . . . the question is, who will “Klaus” be when that happens?

Also, this little bit of intrigue just made that seemingly run of the mill, angsty death scene between Caroline and Tyler SOOO MUCH more interesting . . . not to mention slightly creepy.  I mean, after all, what we just witnessed was the first time Klaus and Caroline kissed, and she didn’t even know it was happening!  (Plus, something tells me that Mr. Hornball-My-Character-Never-Gets-Laid-on-this-show Klausityler is going to take a heck of a lot more advantage of this situation, than just kissing Caroline in the coming episodes.)

“Suck on that, Elena!”

So, it’s a win for both Team Klaroline, and Team Forwood!  Speaking of a win for both teams . . .

“You want a love that consumes you.”

Nouveau Ric and Damon are kicking the crap out of one another, just like old times!

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 Damon takes a nap for a little bit, and wakes up in his very own flashback.  We find him lying in the middle of the road in Mystic Falls . . . a tactic we’ve seen him use many times in the past, to get chicks . . . and eat them. 

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He runs into Elena on the road, and, of course, mistakes her for Katherine.

It’s your classic Meet Cute, complete with flirty comments, and a whole lot of Damon’s trademark “Eye Thing.”  Not-Ponytail-Wearing-But-Still-Perky Elena looks like she wants to rip Damon’s clothes off, right there in the road.  So,  of course, the two start talking about Elena’s dreaded soon-to-be ex, and why he isn’t cutting the mustard . . . in the bedroom or otherwise.  “You want a love that consumes you . .  . passion, adventure, danger . . .” in short, everything she has with Damon now . . .

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Then the elder Salvatore Brother compels Elena to forget ever meeting him, promising her that she will get everything she desires, in the future.  And she does . . . well . . . once she gets through that whole, my parents are going to drown in about 10 minutes thing . . .

P.S. Elena met Damon first.  Put that in your pipe and smoke it SUCKAS!

“Glug, Glug, Gurgle, Glug . . . Cough, Cough, GASP!”

Back in real time, Rebekah is standing in the middle of the road, and Matt Donovan, Worst Driver Ever, swerves WAY TOO WIDE to miss hitting her, and sends the car he’s driving with Elena careening into the water below.  (Moron!  She’s a vampire!  Hit her with the friggin car!  It’s not like she’s actually going to die or anything!)

The scene then begins to intercut back and forth, between Stefan’s rescue of Elena, from the backseat of her parents drowning car, and Stefan’s rescue of Elena in present day.  Back then, as we’ve all heard, Elena’s mom died right away.  But Elena’s dad held her hand for one last goodbye.  We also know that Stefan tried to save Elena’s father first.  But he refused to be helped, until Elena was safe on dry land.

Sidenote: This kind of reminds me of that question jealous siblings always ask of their parents.  “If me and [insert sibling name] were both drowning, and you could only save one of us, who would it be.”

“I’d save you both,” the parent inevitably say.

Which we know is something no HUMAN would be able to actually do, if the situation occurred in real life.

HOWEVER, I would argue that Vampire Stefan, totally could have saved both Elena and her father back then . . . and now . . .

Stefan finds himself faced with another’s Sophie’s choice.  Now, Matt’s unconscious.  And it’s Elena who’s refusing to be rescued, until Matt is safe and sound.  Stefan ultimately follows her orders.  He’s her bitch after all.  Damon would’ve probably given her the middle finger under water, and then actually rescued them both .  . . just saying.

But Damon wasn’t there.  So, we have to watch Elena die . . . and we know, for sure, she croaked too, because over at Vampire Fight Club, Nouveau Ric croaks too.

Poor Damon!  Not only is losing his former best friend again, but he’s facing the loss of yet another lover . . . There’s a lot of heartbreak in this episode.

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And there’s about to be more.  Back at home, Jeremy gets a visit from Ric . . . not Nouveau Ric . . . the real one . . . complete with gelled up, Nice Guy hair, and a trademark Chunky Monkey smile.  Upon seeing him, Jeremy comes to the sad realization that his sister is gone.

Alaric promises to look out for Jeremy, so he’ll never be alone.

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It’s a sweet gesture, not to mention the writers clever, if short-handed way of redeeming a character they pretty much made mincemeat of, these past few episodes.  But still  . . . I don’t know . . . would you want a dad-type “looking out” for YOUR every move .  . . watching you sleep . . . and eat . . . go to the bathroom  . . . have sex?

I just totally killed that perfectly nice moment, for you, didn’t I?  Sorry, Alaric!  We’ll miss your well-meaning, but with inappropriate relationships with his students, goofy stalker, ass! 🙂

Back at the hospital, an inconsolable Damon is begging Crazy Nanny Carrie to tell him where Elena’s body can be found.

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It’s then that we find out, what many of us suspected, that Elena’s injuries, from MASSIVE BLOOD LOSS, PAINT FUME INHALATION, AND FACEPLANTING, were way worse than your run-of-the-mill concussion.  Her brain was bleeding (kind of makes Damon’s comments about Elena’s brain damage earlier offensive, doesn’t it), and she needed vampire blood to survive . . .

AKA . . . Elena died with vampire blood in her system . . . AKA the TVD writers just Breaking Dawned Elena Gilbert . . .

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But more importantly, now she’s going to remember all the wonderful things Damon did for her,  that he compelled her to forget.

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Game on Team Delena!  Godspeed Vampire Elena!  Until next season . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

Heart of Glass – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Before Sunset”

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Hey Fangbangers!  So, we’re just a week away from the Season Finale of TVD.  And characters are dropping like flies, here in Mystic Falls.  You know, for supernatural beings, these folks sure DIE a lot (die . . . un-die  . . . re-die . . . faux-die . . . tie dye . . . die again).

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Sometimes it gets quite difficult to keep track of who’s dead, and who’s . . . well . . . undead.  (But hey, that’s what recaps are for, right?)

So grab your morning paper, and your balls . . . er . . . I mean soccer balls . . . and head on over the Wickory Bridge to Mystic Falls . . . a Vampire Town with a Drinking Problem.  We’re dying for you to join us . . . for a little TVD-cap.

Caroline: “Let’s play ‘Never Have I Ever!'”

Tyler: “Oooh . . . I got one!  Never have I ever died on this show.”

Elena: “Umm . . . yeah you did!”

Tyler: “I know . . . but so did all of you!  Everyone drink up!”

(As always, special thanks to my screencapper extraordinaire, for all the pretty pictures you see here.  If I were Klaus, I’d draw him a pony for all his hard work and dedication . . .)

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Nothing says loving, like a pony pic!

The Clean-up Crew

The episode begins with some creepy, and seemingly completely random Civil War photographs.

Awww . . . now THERE’S a nice, happy inspirational picture to hang up in your classroom!

Oh no!  Not another flashback episode.  I always hate those.  Oh wait . .  . I see what you did there, writers . . . Alaric’s a history teacher.  Sometimes I forget he actually has an occupation aside from drinking and playing with his Chunky Monkey.  And now he’s about to try to murder his own friends.

Is it just me, or does the toy on the horse look like he’s giving the other toys the finger?

Just like our ancestors murdered one another, back during that epic bloody battle.

This toy kind of looks like Klaus does at the end of the episode . . . 

Man, I love when TVD gets all “deep” on us.  It makes me feel “smart and sophisticated.”  Now, I don’t have to watch PBS or the History Channel ever again.

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Hey, did you ever notice how Alaric only seems to actually attend classes when he’s “not himself?”  If you recall, Alarklaus taught history classes, back in Season 2.  He even chaperoned the school dance!

Now, Nouveau Ric is hanging out at the high school as well, and on a weekend, no less!  If only the Administration knew how mich being possessed improved Alaric’s work ethic, they probably would have done it themselves, a long time ago.

“I don’t even really like teaching.  But the benefits are unmatched.  And now that I have fangs, I could really use a good dental plan.”

Speaking of the academically inclined, 1,000-year old Rebekah is another character who seems to attend high school more than anyone else on the show.  I mean, seriously, who volunteers to be on the 8 a.m. clean-up crew for a dance for which they spent the entire time lying dead in a coffin with a stake through their heart?  Now, that’s dedication!

“Popularity is super important to me.  After all, if I didn’t have friends?  Who would I eat?”

But Rebekah’s not alone.  Caroline’s on the clean-up crew too.  Two blonde vampires picking up trash together . . . it’s a commercial for Garbage Woman Barbie!

I’m sorry.  That was politically incorrect.  Of course, I meant “Sanitation Worker Barbie.”

Typically at odds with one another in a “b*tch stole my look and my social life” sort of way, Caroline and Rebekah actually seem to be on their best behavior this morning.  With their respective claws retracted, the two Alpha females even go as far as to exchange banal pleasantries with one another . .  . like, for example, “Golly gee!  I was so sorry to hear that your mother tried to murder you, stole your body, and is now definitely dead . . . again.”

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And, “Oh yeah, same goes for that dead history teacher of yours.  I know you really liked him.  It’s a real shame that he decided to die just like your DAD rather than become an undead bloodsucker, like the two of us.”

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You know, the usual sort of chitchat . . .

Speaking of America’s favorite vampire slaying history teacher, Rebekah runs into Alaric . . . or, perhaps I should say, Nouveau Ric by the lockers.  And suddenly, I’m having flashbacks of “The Reckoning.”  (Remember that one . . . back when Klaus was still the Biggest Baddest Vampy in town, and Stefan still occasionally ate Elena . . . in more ways than one?)

Only this time, Rebekah is playing the role of the Damsel in Distress, for a change.

“Phew, your breath is rank, Nouveau Ric!  What do you use to brush your teeth? Codfish?”

Fun times and Phallic Hijinks ensue, as the pair wrestle with the big shiny weiner-like object that is the Invisible Originals-Killing Stake.  Vampire Barbie Caroline hears the commotion, and rushes to join Klaus Barbie in the fight.  This is actually kind of erotic . . .

Caroline: “You know, this is the closest I’ve ever come to being in a threesome.”

Rebekah: *whistles uncomfortably*

Rebekah: “Hey!  No fair!  You can’t just pull it out like that?  What do you think this is,  the rhythm method?”

Of course, Caroline’s no dummy . .  . at least, not in this episode.  She knows when a fight is hers to lose.  And this one has Death Trap written all over it.  So, the littlest Forbes quite wisely makes a run for it.  (It looks like the gym will have to be cleaned some other time.  Hope no one was planning on  using it for. . .  like . . . actual physical education and stuff.)

Don’t you just hate it when you’re trying to get to your car (because some psycho killer wants to shove a big stake up your ass), and your door won’t open?  Poor Caroline!  It seems that, while you can indeed run from Vampire the Vampire Slayer, driving away from him is not an option, especially when you can’t get into your car.  I hope the company that made Caroline’s car didn’t pay for THAT product placement. 

Caroline: *sigh* “If only I had ONSTAR to help me to open my car door, in desperate situations like these.” *winks at camera*

Alaric knocks out Caroline with frightening ease, before dragging her temporarily unconscious, and always lifeless, body across the concrete, wheelbarrow-style.  Ouch!  She’s probably going to feel that in the morning.  While all this is going down, we see Rebekah, in the distance, observing the situation with a mixture of horror and smugness.  Undoubtedly, in this moment she is thinking, “Now, I’m the fairest of them all, B*tch!  The Prom Queen title is MINE!”

“I’d help her out . . . but I don’t want to ruin my manicure.”

Oh, did I forget to mention that Alaric’s face is falling off?

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Why do I suddenly feel like I’m watching the Thriller video?

Oh Esther, you silly little, pursed lips, completely lacking of facial expression, witchypoo, you!  You would think that as the MOTHER OF ORIGINAL VAMPIRES, she would have at least remembered to give her little Frankenvampire creation a Sunscreen Ring, so that he could play with his fellow fangy friends in the daylight.  (“But MOMMY, all the other vampires have them.  NO FAIR!” I could picture Alaric whining, upon learning of this unfortunate turn of events.

“Snookie and the Situation lied.  Gym, tanning and laundry are definitely overrated.”

But noooo Esther . . . you had to make him suffer unnecessarily, in furtherance of your stupid-totally-doomed-to-fail, because the Scoobies always win or there’d be no show brilliant Vampire Extinction Plan.  Super Villain FAIL!

Then again, I guess you had your reasons . . . like the fact that the episode needed a title . . . and a Cinderella “They all turn back into pumpkins at midnight” type timeline to “heighten the intensity.”

“Mystic Falls, we have a problem . . . another one.”

Back at the Gilbert House of Death, Misery, and Hideous Floral Décor, siblings, Jeremy and Elena, are innocently painting not-so-dead Alaric’s bedroom a lovely shade of toothpaste green.  (That will teach you not to DIE LIKE YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO, Alchy Ric!  Now your bedroom vaguely resembles snot.  I hope you are proud of yourself.)

If Alaric had a grave, he’d be rolling over in it . . . Then again, considering this is a guy who willingly decorates his classroom with pictures of dead people, and the Civil War equivalent of GI Joes,  he’s not exactly an Arbiter of Taste, either.

Stefan arrives on the scene to offer his trademark Sad Smile (also, presumably to kill some time, since “Murder and Mayhem” don’t appear on his calendar today, until about noon.  To say that Petulant Pouty Jeremy (Oh, how I missed your misery Jer Bear!  Unhappiness is SO hot.) is less than thrilled to see one of his sister’s multiple undead suitors on the scene is the understatement of the century.

“I challenge you to a wet t-shirt contest.”

(Then again, it’s possible that Mini Gilbert is simply jealous of Elena’s popularity with members of the opposite sex . . . human or not.  After all, his own ghost girlfriends seemed to have stopped calling him entirely.  I mean things have to be REALLY bad in the relationship department, when women who lack corporeal bodies aren’t willing to bone you.  I’ll bone you, Jer Bear!)

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Let’s face it Jer, when she stops haunting you, while you’re on the toilet . . . she’s just not that into you.

“All I want is one day without vampires,” Jeremy gripes.

(And hey, considering we are one week away from the season finale of the show, Jeremy might get an ENTIRE summer without vampires .  . . unless he watches True Blood.)

Though he tries to play it “cool,” Stefan seems a bit hurt by Jeremy’s statements.  (It’s time to grow a thicker skin, Stefan!  You would think that having been alive for nearly two centuries, you would have at least one or two insults lodged at you that were harsher than the equivalent of:  “Vampires suck.  I wish they’d stop trying to bone my sister.”)

“I know . . . it’s just .  . I just finished watching The Notebook again.  And I’m in a really vulnerable place, right now.”

This, obviously, puts Elena in an awkward position, as she tries to broker a fragile peace between all the men in her life.  Fortunately she doesn’t have to broker for very long, before there is a knock at her door.  Surprise!  It’s the other man in her life . . .  some would say the Best Man (I know I would!)

Still in her flapper costume, nearly 24 hours later.  This takes Walk of Shame to a whole new level.

Of course, I’m referring to Damon, who’s currently hanging out on Elena’s doorstep with a Bloody Bonnie by his side  . . . a bloody Bonnie, who he has undoubtedly scraped off the floor and fed his own blood, after a zombified version of herself gave him a migraine and let then-almost vampire Ric give her a massive hickey on her neck.

And they say Damon isn’t the forgiving type . . .

So now the Scooby Gang knows that Ric-ipoo is not-so-much-dead.  The next challenge is for Bonnie to come up with the Witch Ex Machina to make him definitely dead.  Oh Bonnie, you are sooo the Velma of your Scooby Gang  . . . always stuck with your head in boring spell books, while everyone else is breaking sh*t, beating people up, and getting laid.

Sometimes, the truth hurts.

Meanwhile, over at La Casa de Richer and Awesomer, But Not as Well Furnished, it’s Rebekah’s turn to want to kiss Mystic Falls goodbye.  Next week, it will be Klaus’ again .  . . oh . . . wait .  . . nevermind. But Klaus isn’t about to skip town without his prized bloodbag Elena.  How else would he be able to create an unlimited array of hybrids who would be eternally gay for him (even the female ones)?  Rebekah pleads for him to reconsider.  After all, wasn’t the whole Hybrid Thing really just a convoluted end-run around being alone?

And hey, Klaus doesn’t NEED to be alone anymore.  He has his family now . . . you know, the folks he carried around in coffins for hundreds of years, just for fun . . . well . . . except for his mother (dead), his father (deader), and Finn (deadest) . . . but Klaus never really liked them anyway, right?

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Ahhh . . . but here’s the rub.  Klaus’ family isn’t quite as gay for him as the hybrids are.  They misbehave, have opinions of their own, occasionally fight back.  Unacceptable!

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Sorry Rebekah!  Hybrids, for the win.  It looks like you will be leaving this sorry ass, one-bar, town alone . . .

Klaus Mikaelson . . . Worst . . . Paperboy . . . EVER!

Oh Klaus . . . sketcher of smiley ponies . . .

.  . . painter of poop . . .

It has been quite some time, since we got to see you kick some genuine ass.  And no, I’m not just talking about your threatening to “kill everyone [insert name here] loves; or getting your hybrids to kick asses for you . . . I’m talking about honest-to-goodness acts of impressive villainy.  “Before Sunset” finally allowed us to see some of that . . .

 . . . annnnnd then Klaus died.

Shortly after he learned the truth about Nouveau Ric, Klaus paid a little visit to the Gilbert house to retrieve Princess Elena.  The problem, of course, is that, unbeknownst to Klaus (and everyone else in the house, for that matter), Elena is out rescuing Caroline, whos’s been held hostage by Nouveau Ric at the school.  To be honest, I don’t know if “rescuing” is ever a good word to describe for what Elena does for other people .  . . since it always ends up with Elena in danger, and people coming to rescue her.  Maybe what Elena does should become it’s own adjective: “Elena-ing.”

“Hmm . . . who’s number is this in my cell phone?  TV Recapper?  DELETE!”

Either way, neither the Salvatore Brothers, nor Mini Gilbert, have any intention of letting Klaus in the house.  This, of course, pisses Klaus off royally.  And so, he responds by doing what Klaus does best . . .  He throws a temper tantrum.

Have you ever played that old video game, where you’re the Paperboy, and the object of the game is to get all the papers on your “route” to land on the stoop, as opposed to  . . . hitting the neighbor’s dog, or breaking windows?  Yeah . . . well, let’s just say Klaus has other strategies in mind.

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Suddenly, the Original Hybrid is chucking newspapers, soccer balls, pieces of white picket fence . . . anything he can get his hands on  . . .

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 . . . at the not-entirely-unsuspecting Salvatore Brothers, who are expertly ducking them all.  It’s like one big crazy game of dodgeball!

I don’t know about what Klaus is doing. It sure seems like an awful lot of work to me just to get into a house.  As another, much more talented recapper (Entertainment Weekly’s Mandi Bierly) than I pointed out, Klaus’ brother Elijah accomplished the exact same thing, with nothing more than the loose change in his pocket.

Also, not to point out the obvious, but what the heck are the Gilbert’s neighbors going to think about all this?  Then again, given all the CRAZY INSANE-O things we’ve seen go on at the Gilbert house, these past three seasons, the fact that the neighbors NEVER ever thought to call the cops . . . or better yet move . . . probably means that they are all dead anyway.  (Maybe Klaus ate them?)

Or Stefan . . .

Once the gang finally figures out where Elena actually is (thanks to a helpful call from Nouveau Ric, himself), it should come as no surprise to anyone that Saint Stefan is the one that encourages Klaus to join Team Scooby in it’s weekly installment of the “Save Elena” games.   After all, they all want the same girl, right?  They might as well work together to get her back.

“B*tch PLEASE!”

Never one to look a gift pony in the mouth (especially one he’s drawn), you can’t exactly blame Klaus for being a bit skeptical of the offer.  In no uncertain terms, Klaus reminds Stefan that, if they defeat Nouveau Ric, Klaus WILL be leaving Mystic Falls with lover girl as his bloodbag.  “Then I’ll go with you,” Stefan says, unfazed.

“And that’s why you’re the better option [for Elena],” Klaus remarks generously . . . thus proving that he will say whatever it takes to get back into the jock strap of his unrequited vampire love.

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Long story short, Klaus isn’t about to give up the opportunity to have his blood bag, and eat Stefan’s weiner too.  He’s SO in!

The question is, of course, if no stake on Earth can kill Ric, how are Bonnie and her Scooby Gang plus Klaus going to manage it?  More on that, in a little bit . . .

Teacher’s Pet

That Nouveau Ric!  He’s such a sweetie.  Here he is giving up a fun weekend of binge drinking and blacking out to offer some private tutoring to his favorite students Caroline and Elena.  The lesson of the day: Why Murdering Vampires Isn’t as Morally Reprehensible as You Might Think 101.  Since this is an “interactive lesson” it involves Caroline being stabbed in the hand with a pencil, and gagged with vervain.

Oh, Alaric.  You really haven’t thought this one through.  How is she supposed to take notes?

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Disturbing as this scene was, I liked the way it fleshed out (no pun intended) Alaric’s alter ego a bit more.  In earlier episodes, the guy came off as nothing more than a raging lunatic.  But this scene reminded us that Nouveau Ric, evil as he might be, still possesses all of Alaric’s old memories.  He even . . . in his own twisted way . . . still cares about Elena . . . sort of. And when he tells the young woman that he came thisclose to formally adopting in his “other life,” that his vampire distrusting parents would be disappointed in some of Elena’s recent “life choices,” you can tell that he really believes it.

In a way, Nouveau Ric is kind of like a religious extremist or terrorist . . . so firm and single-minded in his beliefs, that he is willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish them . . . even if it doing it makes him a monster.  Klaus tries to coax Elena into staking Caroline, under the theory, that her death will be more painful if Alaric himself carries it out.

“For the last time, I will NOT touch your stick, Ric!  So, stop whipping it out, and waving it in my face!”

But surprisingly enough, the teenager outsmarts the dude with the Master’s degree, by pretending to try and stake him, while she douses his face with scalding-to-vampires vervain.

Now, Nouveau Ric is angry . . . and you wouldn’t like him, when he’s angry. . .

The Three Vamp-keteers . . . the Witch . . . and the Whipping Boy

Surprise!  At the eleventh hour, Bonnie Ex Machina has discovered the key to temporarily killing . . . at least until the non-vampire Scooby Gang reaches their 30’s the seemingly unkillable Nouveau Ric.  Specifically, Bonnie wants to use on Alaric the dessication spell, her absentee bio mom once used on the now definitely dead Mikael.

The catch is that she needs her lame-ass, cut-and-run, pays more attention to her pseudo-son/boyfriend than her, mother Abby, in order to accomplish the deed.

Now, I can’t STAND the useless, wimpy, cowardly character of Abby.  And I would have much rather her stayed GONE.  That said, I kind of love how the writers used her to express us recapper’s long standing complaint that the Salvatore’s house .  . . which was specifically deeded over to the very human Elena back in Season 2 . . . now seems open to any and all vampires.  Of course, most of the characters on the show consistently ignored this annoying anomaly until Abby.

Speaking in the voice of the writers, Damon explains that, when Elena “died” (for about two seconds) back in episode 221, the house reverted back to the Salvatores, at least in the spiritual sense (legally, it OBVIOUSLY still belongs to Elena).  And so, since La Casa de Rich and Awesome is once again vampire owned, it is pretty much an Open House for every soon-to-be-dead guest star vampire around . . .you know . . .  like Abby.

Anywhoo . . . Abby’s all “Nooo . . . dear daughter, who I abandoned, seemingly uncaring as to whether you lived or died .  . . PLEASSSEEEE don’t do the Dessication spell!   It involves BLACK MAGIC, and . . . temporarily killing a human by stopping their heart and .  . . having vampires drink your blood again . . . and making your face look prematurely veiny.   In other words, this is a big time Bad News Spell, child.  It can f*&k you up, something fierce!”

Fortunately, Damon pipes in to say.  “Hey, she’s Bonnie ex Machina.  It’s her JOB to perform dangerous spells in the last ten minutes of every episode to save our asses.

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Not that we pay her, or anything . . . because we don’t.  But hey!  If she didn’t do it, she might as well be another show . . . like The Secret Circle . . . or something.

It’s settled them!  Black magic and veiny face be damned.  Klaus, Stefan and Damon are going to temporarily incapacitate Nouveau Ric, and drink Bonnie’s blood . . . so that Bonnie can mumble in faux Latin . . . and do whatever it is she does on this show that constitutes “spell casting.”

Jeremy: “Umm . . . Bonnie . . . not to question your witchy ways or anything, but what exactly does grabbing my crotch repeatedly have to do with killing Nouveau Ric.”

Bonnie: *whistles awkwardly*

But here’s a question:  what moronic human is idiotic enough to let Bonnie stop his heart, even temporarily,  for the love of one teenage girl.  Do you even have to ask?  It’s Mini Gilbert of course.  (Poor guy, even he performs acts of tremendous bravery, they always seem to involve him lying on his back, and having the crap kicked out of him by women.  Life just isn’t fair.)

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Oh, and did I mention that Bonnie “found” Caroline and Elena at the school, using her trusty iPhone GPS.  Obligatory and Obnoxious Product Placement Alert!

Trying to determine whether your history teacher is an alien?  There’s an app for that!

In which Elena gets an IDEA . . .

Though the Three Vamp-keteers put on a good show, of trying to tackle Nouveau Ric together at school (The diversion even enables Klaus to free, and subsequently make some serious sex eyes, at Caroline.) . . .

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 . . . their efforts to stake Nouveau Ric, while Bonnie fondles Jeremy’s chest, and attempts to stop his heart, are ultimately ineffective, and end with both Salvatore Brother down for the count.

Thus proving you can never be too old for nap time.

But worry not, because hope is not yet lost.  Nouveau Ric’s staunch refusal to kill vampire lover Elena makes the doppelganger extremely suspicious . . . so, suspicious, in fact, that she takes a risk, and tries to slice open her own neck for sh*ts and giggles.

It’s a Do-It-Yourself Hickey . . .

The seemingly suicidal action causes Nouveau Ric to go batsh*t insane, thereby confirming Elena’s surprisingly clever hypothesis.

Apparently Nouveau Ric’s life is tied to Elena’s in the same way each other vampire’s life is tied to an Originals.  So, if and when Elena dies, Nouveau Ric will die too.  In other words, Alchy Ric isn’t actually a threat to Elena, even at his most vampire hater killingest.  Problem solved  . . .Elena has been saved . . .  again . . . crisis averted, right?

WRONG!

Alert the media, Elena’s in danger again!

We come back from commercial to find out that sh*t has really hit the fan now.  Somehow, Klaus managed to get away from Alaric, and took Elena with him.  So, remember the Good Old Days, when Klaus used to want Elena to live, because he needed her blood bagging talents to make more hybrids?  Apparently, not so much, anymore!  All it took was one look at how powerful Nouveau Ric was, and Klaus completely flip-flopped on his Elena policy.

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But you know Klaus . . . he’s all about the Evil Villain Monologue.  So, instead of bleeding Elena dry as fast as possible, he decides to gossip with her, about which Salvatore Brother she loves more.  DAMON!  DAMON!  IT’S GOTTA BE DAMON!

Of course, Elena doesn’t give an answer because it’s not the season finale yet.  Actually she does answer Klaus’s question.  Just not necessarily in the way we would have hoped . . .

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Now, he’s draining her blood, in hopes of escaping with his own life in tact.  Sure, it will mean that the amount of new hybrids Klaus can make are limited.  But that’s a small price to pay for eternal life, right?  And eternal life is exactly what Klaus will get once Elena and Alaric are dead? True?

Maybe not . . . you see . . . Klaus’ main henchman during the Elena Draining is none other than Tyler . . . Elena’s friend . . . Caroline’s boyfriend . . . and a self-de-sired hybrid, who, in his own words is “SO NOT [KLAUS’] b*tch anymore.  So, much for hybrids being an Original Vampire’s best friend!  Tyler is clearly, gay for Klaus, no more.

“Now, I’m gay for Damon!  Sorry!”

 And what’s worse, he’s called in the Scooby Gang to perform on Klaus the exact same “desiccation” spell originally meant for Nouveau Ric.

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In the words of werewolves . . . and cartoon dogs named Astro . . . Ruh Roh, Klausipoo!

Your cheating heart . . . (will make you dried out and veiny)

Back in the Forest Where Everyone in Mystic Falls Has Died at Least Once, Bonnie is, once again, chanting and mumbling over a sleepy . . . soon to be dead-y Jeremy.   This time, though, she succeeds in stopping her ex-boyfriend’s heart, at the exact same moment the Salvatore Bros have staked Klaus.

“Need   . . . Botox . . . now.”

Oh, this is soooo time for a nose bleed, right?  Apparently not.  Nope . . . no nose bleeds for Black Magic Bonnie, who seems to be having wayyy to much fun stopping Jer Bear’s heart if you ask me.  I mean, girlfriend’s making an “O” face, while she’s killing her boy toy, which is just beyond inappropriate if you ask me . . .

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Temporarily Murdering Jeremy > vibrator

Also . . . her face is getting all black and veiny, for no apparent reason whatsoever.  EW!  I don’t know about you, but if I had to choose one, I’d go nosebleeds over Vein Faced spellgasms any day (and twice on Sunday).

Back at the Klaus House, Big Bad Original is starting to look all pale, sad, creepy, lifeless zombie like . . . you know, kind of like his siblings looked, back when he staked all of them.  Knowing that life as he knows it is now coming to an end, Klausipoo takes these last few moments to share one final eye-f*&k with the secret love of his life, Stefan.  It was both sad, and sexy at the same time.  And Stefan’s eyes are undoubtedly pregnant right now from the effort.

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Still . . .  eye-screw or no-screw, Klaus is DEAD-DEAD . . . at least until the next Sweeps period.

Mini Gilbert lived to tell the tale though!

“Oh Bonnie.  I had the most awful dream.  You were murdering me with your hands, while making sex noises.”

But only after a maudlin Bonnie cried hysterically for about three seconds over his unconscious body.  (Oh honey,  we saw your O-face.  Don’t act all high and mighty now, and pretend you didn’t enjoy it.)

When all is said and done, the Salvatore Brother’s toss Klaus’ lifeless body into the trunk of their car where Stefan gives it the goodbye screw of it’s life, and escort the favor, slightly de-blooded, Elena back home.

The Doppelganger and Not-Secret Service Crew

At the doorstep, she stops to thank them for being so patient with her.  But she really needs some more time to choose which one of them she wants to dry hump on a regular basis, if that’s OK with them.  DAMON!  DAMON! DAMON!

They both say, “Sure ! No problem” (though neither of them really means it), and head for the hills.

In the car, on the way to dump Klaus’ body off the Wickory Bridge, Stefan and Damon have a heartfelt conversation about Elena.  I probably would have paid a lot more attention to it, if, the whole time, I wasn’t waiting for Klaus to pop up in between them, say, “HAHA FOOLED YA, SUCKAS!  I AIN’T EVEN DEAD YET,” and start making out with Stefan.

It never happened.  And I can’t decide whether or not I’m disappointed about that.

Anywhoo, Damon and Stefan mutually agree with one another, about how totally hot and perfect Elena was.

Then, Saint Stefan offers to “gallantly” leave town if Elena ends up choosing Damon as her “lovah!”

At first, Damon’s response seems to be “F*&k that, if she picks you, I’m sticking around for the Hot Revenge Sex I’m going to get, each time you two fight.”

But eventually, Damon VERY RELUCTANTLY agrees to do the same thing for his brother’s sake.  “And hey,” Damon adds.  “In sixty or so years, after Elena croaks, we might even be able to be brothers again.”

Good old Damon.  Always the optimist . . . well . . . except for the fact that he’s only letting Elena live until her mid seventies.  That’s kind of cold, don’t you think?

It’s a CELEBRATION!

It’s rare to get truly happy moments on TVD.  But we got one at the end of this episode, when Jer Bear, Bonnie, Tyler (who, since the founder of his bloodline is only “all dried up” and not “actually dead, got to live to see the end of this episode), Token Human Matt, Caroline and Elena herself all got to get wasted on tequila, and celebrate the death of Season 2 and 3’s Big Bad.

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Just happy not to have a vervain soaked rag in her mouth, a slightly tipsy Caroline echoed her not-so-much boyfriend Klaus, in trying to get Elena to voice her Salvatore Brother Choice.  But Elena wasn’t about to let a little thing like the fact that polygamy isn’t legal in Virgina, rain on her Dead Klaus Parade!  No sir!

And it’s a good thing too . . . because all that happiness only lasts for about two seconds . . .

Elsewhere in Mystic Falls,  Nouveau Ric crashes a council meeting to out Caroline’s and Tyler’s respective mommies as “vampire sympathizes’ and “harborers of supernatural creatures.”  Now, it’ just a hunch.   But I’m thinking this is going to hurt their chances at mayor and sheriff re-election, BIG TIME!  (Might I suggest throwing a little compulsion in with those campaign buttons  . . .)

In more bad news . . .

So, THAT’S where Bonnie’s nosebleeds went . . .

In the final moments of the episode, we see Elena returning to Alaric’s room to finish painting his snot green walls.  A searing pain hits her neck, and she passes out, blood dumping from her nose, like Bonnie on a Spell Bender.  Well, this can’t be good . . .

“Don’t call it a nosebleed.  Call it a Blood Mustache.”

That said, for all two of you that actually thought Elena actually croaked, you can rest easy.  The doppelganger LIVES!

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And I have proof!

Here  . . .

Here . . .

And here . . .

Until next time, my fellow Fangbangers!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

May Sweeps and April Fools – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Do Not Go Gentle”

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“Oh, how I miss the good old days, when I only had one personality, and when my biggest problem was that my girlfriend’s teenage niece accidentally caught a glimpse of my Chunky Monkey.”

Ever feel used and abused by one of your favorite television shows .  . . like the writers treated you like a cheap tissue, blowing their nose on your tummy, and tossing you in the trash?

That’s kind of how “Do Not Go Gentle,” made me feel, this week.  Of course,  this is not to say it wasn’t a well-written, bold, and game changing episode.  It was!  And yet, I still somehow ended the hour with a not-so-fresh feeling . . .

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Shameless excuse to use Damon shower gif?  CHECK!

Then again, when you think about it, this wasn’t even TVD’s first Fake Death at a School Dance Episode.  (Remember what didn’t happen to Bonnie during “The Last Dance?”)

So, perhaps, I’m a bit at fault for coming into the episode so patently unprepared for emotional manipulation.  On a lighter note, I now have about four more pictures, of hot boys with single tears streaming down their cheeks, for my ever-growing Soulful Crying Collection!  So, HOORAY FOR ATTRACTIVE ANGST!

Let’s review, shall we?

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(As always a Big Bloody thank you to Andre, one of my favorite Fangbangers, for all the awesome screencaps you see here . . . including a few admittedly obscure screencap requests made by THIS lazy recapper . . .)

Faux-bekah Strikes Again

We begin our episode over at La Casa de Richer and Awesomer But Not as Well Furnished.  Klaus is hard at work, painting something that, I suspect is supposed to look moody and avant garde, but to me vaguely resembles a big pile of poop . . . literally . . .

This is why you shouldn’t chew on girls who eat beans for dinner . . .

Faux-bekah has just returned from her little pow wow with Psycho-Ric, and wants to “bond” with Klaus.  For the record, Barbie Klaus is acting so completely unlike the real Rebekah (She’s all prim, proper and prissy, now . . . Her accent has even changed) that it annoys me a bit that Klaus isn’t at all suspicious.

“I’m showing you mine.  So, whip it out, and show me yours.  Come on.  Don’t be shy.  It’s not like I haven’t seen it before.  I used to change your diapers.  Oops . . . I mean, our mom used to change your diapers . . . But I’m not your mom, no sir!  Now, bend over and let me spank you on your knee for pooping on that piece of artwork.”

I mean, this is the SISTER he’s known for 1,000s of years (thereby making this at least ten times worse than all those times Katherine fooled Stefan and Damon into thinking she was Elena).  And it’s not as though Klaus is a stranger to bodily possession.

Yet, we get no indication that Klaus is the least bit wise to the fact that his sister is now his mother . . . not even the slightest snarky remark, or eyebrow raise.  I’m starting to think that crushing on Stefan . . . er . . . I mean Caroline, has negatively impacted Klaus’ IQ.

“There’s something different about you, I just can’t put my finger on it.  Oh, wait . . . I know.  You cut your hair and your personality.”

Anywhoo, after the “siblings” discard what is supposedly the Very Last Deadly to Originals Stake together, Klaus starts to discuss the idea of skipping town.  Unfortunately for him, Faux-bekah isn’t  having it.  “But I want to go to the dannnnnnnnce,” she pouts, like the perpetual early 40-something pretending to be the perpetual teenager that she actually is.    (It’s all so very Freaky Friday.)  “And, besides, don’t you want a chance to see Caroline?  I know you looooooooove her.”

Oh, how the mighty have fallen.  Klaus actually finds this ridiculous argument compelling.  So compelling, in fact, that he agrees to stick around for Mystic Falls’ annual Bloodbath Prom, based solely on the hope that his Prom Queen Crush will dump the football jock, and acknowledge his Hybrid King existence.  Sigh . . .

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After pretending to be “Real Alaric” during a phone conversation with Damon, Psycho Ric meets up with his new girlfriend, Faux-Bekah, again, who  then quickly returns to her old Esther body, by temporarily staking Rebekah.  “WHY?”  I yell at my television.  Just so she can do more of that witchy chanting stuff?  BO-RING.  I don’t know . . . I had the opportunity to parade around as a younger, hotter, version of myself for a few days, while awaiting the destruction of an entire species, I’d do it in a heartbeat.  Just saying . . .

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From a storyline perspective, I was also a bit disappointed at how quickly the form of Faux-Bekah was discarded.  For one thing, it make last week’s big twist so much less impactful than it could have been.  Also, personally, I was interesting in seeing how well Claire Holt could pull off the dual role for a more extended period of time.  Of course, I understand this whole possession storyline to some extent was a been there/ done that rehash of last season’s Alar-klaus fiasco.  But still, it would have been nice if Faux-Bekah stuck around a bit longer.

Girlfriend, can’t catch a break . . . EVER.

On a much more shallow note, there’s just something about the way the actress who plays Esther puffs out her lips when she talks that really bugs me.

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If this episode was a more Faux-Bekah centric one, we could have easily sidestepped this inconvenience . . .

In other news, Jeremy’s back in town.  He’s still wearing the ring, but he’s not a psychopath yet . . . at least as far as we know.  He’s also been spending a lot of time with Matt, which is nice.

Since Mini Gilbert has never been particularly sporty, Matt suggests the young stud take up interpretive dance.

Team Human has to stick together, after all.  As long as neither of these guys bring up the fact that they both used to bone eachother’s sisters, I think they will be OK.

Speaking of Matt boning Elena, what was the deal with Caroline telling Matt to stay away from Elena?  That was kind of pushy!  Now, granted, I don’t want Matt and Elena to get together either.  But I was annoyed on Matt’s behalf that Caroline was the one telling him not to “go there.”  After you break up with someone, you officially waive the rights to have any sort of say in who they date next.  That should be like a law . . .  or something.

Wow, I think this is the first time I’m taking Matt’s side over Caroline’s!

Perhaps, this has something to do with the fact that Caroline and I are no longer on the same team, shipper wise.  And I’m consequently a little mad at her . . . OK, make that A LOT mad.

Shipping Stelena has painful consequences on this blog . . .

“He’s your Epic Love.” *gag, puke, groan*

Last week, we all got to hear Rose’s argument as to why Elena should be with Damon.

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This week, we got Caroline’s rebuttal.  And it basically boiled down to this:

Caroline, because I am mad at you, you get to be the victim of an unflattering screencap.

(1)     Stefan’s and Elena’s love is EPIC.  Ummm . . . NO.  Actually, THIS is epic . . .

Stefan and Elena are more . . . um . . . sweet, I guess?   I don’t want to offend Stelena fans out there.  But I do take offense to the use of the word “epic,” predominately as a result of the clip above.  Stefan’s great and all.  But he’s no Logan Echolls . . . sorry.

(2)    It’s Stefan’s turn.  *snort, giggle*  Yes, last week, Damon’s “turn” involved some super hot dry humping and almost-sex, at a motel that probably actually did rent by the hour.  Stefan’s “turn” -involved a half a slow dance, a lot of crying, and some G-rated hugging.  Long story short, if this was carnival game, and I was Stefan, I’d ask for my red tickets back.  That wasn’t a “turn,” it was a taste test .  . .

Anyway, Caroline’s “super argument” convinces Elena to ask Stefan to Bloodbath Prom.   He accepts gratefully, thinking, “Hey, maybe I could get some action, under the bleachers, while my ex-girlfriend reminisces about the time I almost ate her there . . .”

Sorry, Stefan . . . this isn’t that kind of episode.

Damon, of course, hasn’t gotten the memo about how lackluster Stefan’s “turn” is going to end up being.  So, he broods and pouts a bit, telling Stefan not to accidentally stab Elena with his corsage . . .

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You know, because if she bleeds, he might be tempted to eat her again . . . and not in the “good way.”

Woefully without a date to the Bloodbath Prom, Damon decides to stalk the Good Doctor Crazy Nanny Carrie at the hospital, since she’s the only person on this show, aside from Sheriff Forbes, who actually seems to go to work.  Damon informs Crouching Tiger, Hidden Psychopath, that Alaric hasn’t been taking his “Be a Good Boy,” medication, which means he’s now a “Very Bad Boy.”

In real life, this probably thrills the Lady Doc, who, let’s face it, always seemed like the kind who liked it rough.  Of course, for purposes of this storyline, she has to pretend to be appalled.

“That’s hot . . .  um . . . I mean . . . Oh, no.  How terrible!”

One Big Silver Phallus to Rule Them All

Not enough phallic imagery in the first twenty minutes of this episode?  Worry not!  Lady Esther, is about to take her BIG POWERFUL STICK (i.e. the Originals Killing Stake), and thrust over and over again, into Alaric’s ring, until it oozes silver stuff, thereby rendering, it EVEN BIGGER AND MORE POWERFUL.

“I’m going to need a bigger condom . . .”

Woo!  I need a cold shower, after watching that . . .

Shameless . . . THAT’S ME!

In all seriousness though, the idea of linking the Immortality Ring to the Stake, to prevent it from burning up instantly upon use, thereby rendering it recyclable, was a pretty brilliant move on Esther’s part . . . not to mention clever plotting, on the part of the show’s writers. . .

Dance Karma’s a B*tch . . .

Elsewhere in Mystic Falls, Stefan picks up Elena for the dance, and the two make some highly meta jokes about how super deadly dances happen to be, in this town.  Of course, all this seeming self-awareness would be a lot more meaningful if Stefan and Elena were actually smart enough to take their own advice, and . . . wait for it . . . NOT GO TO THE DANCE WHERE ELENA IS PERPETUALLY IN DANGER, AND HER FRIENDS ALWAYS DIE.

Speaking of meta, resident Alpha Male, Tyler Lockwood rarely gets to exhibit his intelligence on this show (except for that one time, when they randomly decided to put him in Advanced Placement History class).  However, this week, for whatever reason, the writers decided to throw Tyler a bone (Cheesy Wolf Joke Alert), and allot to him, what was, in my opinion, the funniest line in this entire, otherwise rather depressing, episode.

It all starts, with Tyler arriving at the 20’s themed dance, all decked out in his gangster finery, and ready to sweep Caroline off her feet with his mad “swing dance” moves.  (His snooty mom probably made him take ballroom dance lessons, as a kid, or something.)  Caroline, of course, is petrified that Klaus will sniff out (another dog joke) his sire, and make him do something awful, like lick his boots or something.

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But Tyler Lockwood is not afraid.  Ripping off all your clothes, and turning into a werewolf, over and over again in the woods, will do that for a guy.  “What’s he [Klaus] going to do?” Tyler snarks.  “Draw you another picture?”

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That My Little Pony drawing  .. .  man, Klaus really was asking for it when he made that.

“I wuv you, Cawoline!”

Back in my high school, that was the kind of thing that got your head shoved in a toilet.  In addition to Klaus’ “gift” to Caroline not exactly being the most manly way to show a lady your affection, we often forget that Tyler too is an artist.  But, unlike Klaus, he draws DUDE stuff .  . . like bloodthirsty werewolves, and naked ladies with big titties.  In other words, in the male pissing contest for Caroline’s affections, Tyler sort of wins this round.

It IS a dance.  So, we have to get all this cheesy, cuddly, coupley stuff out of the way, before we can starting ripping people’s faces off and killing sh*t.  We see Bonnie having a grand old time with her Not-Brother (who kind of still IS her brother) Jamie.

The Lannister family approves!

I’m pretty sure it’s the only time I’ve seen her smile all season.  Then Jeremy arrives, and looks jealous for about two seconds.  Then, he remembers that his ghost girlfriends were about ten times better in the sack than Bonnie ever was.  So, he goes back to play with Matt some more . . .

While Stefan and Elena slow dance, Elena tries to apologize to Stefan for occasionally tongue kissing, and often dry humping, his brother.

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Stefan says he doesn’t care.  He’s just happy to have a date.  Way to set the bar low, Steffie-poo!  Then, Damon comes and cockblocks the pair, which doesn’t particularly bother me, because someone is ALWAYS cockblocking Damon and Elena.  Remember, as Caroline said, it IS Stefan’s turn . . . and being cockblocked is just one of those things that “turns” with Elena on a non-pay-cable show will inevitably include.

 “Sorry to interrupt . . . oh, wait. .  . no I’m not.”

Apparently, Damon actually has a REAL reason for interrupting Stelena time, aside from just pure not wanting it to happen.  Psycho Alaric has gone rogue, and Damon wants to murder the guy, in order to put his “good self,” out of his misery.  This, of course, pisses off Jeremy, because this will be the third father figure he’s lost since the series started.  (Fourth, if you are like me, and always considered Useless Aunt Jenna to be more paternal, than maternal.)

Would you like some salt with your vampire?

Outside the dance, Esther gets Elena to come with her, because Elena’s a moron she wants to save Alaric’s life, psycho or no psycho.  The rest of the Scooby Gang, run off in pursuit but find they are trapped inside by . .  . wait for it . . . a ring of salt.  SALT!  That’s great!  Who knew this year’s Bloodbath Prom theme would end up being Vampire Barbecue?  Throw in a little hot sauce, and some grilled veggies, and we can make a mean shish-kabob . . .

“This reminds me of the 80’s, when I used to do a lot of coke.”

Damon’s the Cockblock King this week, he interrupts Jamie’s and Bonnie’s incest perfectly normal .  . . make out session  . . .

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 . . . to tell them that the Bonnie’s weird chanting, and nosebleed services are needed to move the salt.  Personally, I would have gone with a plain old vacuum, but that’s just me . . .

Now, we are in some weird creepy cemetery.  (I bet with their super high death toll, there are as many cemeteries in Mystic Falls as most towns have Starbucks.)  It’s here that we learn Esther’s Big Bad Plan.  Apparently, in order to kill all the vampires, she wants to  . . . wait for it . . . turn Alaric into a vampire.  Yes, because a vampire hater, who MAKES LOTS OF VAMPIRES isn’t hypocritical at all.

“Who wants to make some S’Mores?”

Seriously?  Is there some rule that no one on this show can stay human, aside from Elena?  Isn’t part of the aura of vampires the fact that they are so SPECIAL, and so much cooler than us humans?  The problem is, in a town where seemingly about 80% of the population is something supernatural, it’s the humans that are special.  Vampires are kind of, been there, bit that, you know?

Here’s another issue I had with this whole Psycho Ric storyline.  We now learn that the real reason, Alaric’s become all crazy and Founder’s Council killing, is not because The Ring Made Him Do It, but because Esther, herself starting chatting his ear off every time he died?  Huh?  So, is that what we are supposed to believe happened to Samantha Gilbert too?

And if Alaric was really nurtured to believe that vampires and all their friends don’t deserve to live, each time he died, was there really ever an alter ego, at all  . . . or has Alaric been secretly psychotic all this time?  As clever as I thought this whole ring twist was at first, I found Esther’s part in it a bit confusing, and more than a bit frustrating.

Small town boy . . . small town life

Speaking of frustration . . . well, at least of the sexual variety, Klaus gets a verbal and emotional beatdown by Caroline, who, for all her keeping his horse pictures, and secretly mooning over him, in previous episodes, really does seem “just not that into him,” when he manages to pull her aside for one “Last Dance” at the prom.

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She does, however, seem at least intrigued by his suggestion that, one day, her “small town life,” will no longer satisfy her immortal vampire urges.  Now THAT’S a storyline I’d like to see explored further . . .

Nonetheless, it is Tyler who Caroline reaffirms her love for at the end of the dance.  And the Alpha Male even earns some extra points, by offering to sacrifice himself on the Scooby Gang altar, just so Klaus could die.  Yeah, Tyler definitely won this round against his Vampire Papa.  The question is, can he win the war . . . and, even if he does, will he survive to reap the spoils of his victory?

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The rest of the Scooby Gang runs into Klaus, while his now blue-balled self is stalking away from Caroline.  Once again, Klaus is forced to join forces with Team Scooby for a common goal.

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Behold . . . the Eye Candy.

Failing to realize that Plot Device Bonnie is already trying to break the salt barrier, so the vampires can rescue Elena . . . again, and stop Esther and Nouveau Ric, Klaus starts strangling her new beau-not brother Jamie.

You better not hurt me, or my Cousin Skeeter will kick your ass . . .

It shouldn’t be hilarious ..  . but it totally is.

Yes, I’m fully aware that I’m a terrible human being.

Wow, they weren’t kidding.  She really IS just a Human Plot Device!

It’s been three seasons, now.  It’s time the writers deeper into their bag of tricks for spells their witches can do to save / ruin the day at the end of every episode.  For example, I’m really tired of the one where they bleed on a piece of paper, and the blood travels around to “find stuff.”  I know, it’s supposed to be all intense and visceral.  But it always just looks like bad finger painting to me.  It would have been better (or at least funnier) if they had Klaus draw another pony picture, and the horse GALLOPED off the page to Elena’s rescue.

Of course, all the vampires are still busy licking salt, so Token Humans Jeremy and Matt have to go out to the creepy ceremony to save Elena . . . This can’t end well . . .

Back at the cemetery, Esther snatches Elena’s blood and feeds it to Alaric.

Coincidentally, Elena’s O face . . . and Elena’s OH NO face are strikingly similar . . .

She then kills him, helpfully informing Elena that, during Alaric’s transition, he will become “Good Alaric” for one final time.  Then, Jeremy and Matt pop up, and try to shoot Esther, which, of course, doesn’t work . . . because she’s an evil witch ghost DUH!  But surprise!

Crossbows RULE.  Just ask this guy . . .

Good Alaric rises to kill the biatch.

“NO MOTHER’S DAY CARD FOR YOU!”

Hooray . . . for now.

In other good news, now that Queen of the Vampire Haters is dead, Bonnie can move the salt with her mind.  The Scooby Gang is FREE!  But before they can leave to grab Elena, Klaus and Stefan, must fight like the gay lovers they truly are.

“We never touch anymore . . . except when you’re strangling me, or trying to stake me in the stomach.”

Klaus, once again, bemoans his lost friendship with Stefan . . . and by “friendship” he means all the great hot ripper sex they used to have.  Unfortunately, for Klaus, Stefan rejects him too . . . so the sex must not have been as good for Stefan, as it was for Klaus.

“Screw you, Recapper.  I’m an Adonis in the sack!”

Wow, duped by Beks, hated by his own mother, and rejected by both Caroline and Stefan . .. this REALLY isn’t Klaus’ episode, is it?

Worst . . . Funeral . . . EVER!

“Shouldn’t someone like say a speech or something?”

“No, no . . . just stare it him.  The depressing -want-to-slit-your-wrist-music will do all the work for us.”

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It’s maudlin emotional manipulation time, when we learn that Alaric, like Caroline’s dad before him, is not going to complete his vampire transition, so as to save his friends from his own murderous impulses.  This is followed by a massively tear jerking moment, in which the entire cast of the vampire diaries, stares longingly at Alaric, and gives the character, and presumably the actor, a fond adieu.

But that’s not all, we also get, single-tear soulful crying moments, first from surrogate son Jeremy, who’s been through this WAY too many times before . . .

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 . . . then from super crier, Elena . . .

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 . . . and finally, from Alaric himself, as bromantic team Bad Ass buddy Damon, joins Alaric in his self-imposed prison for one final glass of scotch, or bourbon, or whatever the heck is these two’s liquid of choice these days.

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In my absolute favorite scene of the entire episode Damon . . . the King of the Single Tear Cry apologizes for killing Alaric  . . .  twice, while Alaric playfully teases Damon about the cheeseball romance novel dream death he gave Dear Rose,  last season.  A few, alcoholic jokes are exchanges, before Alaric finally passes out from the sedative Meredith gave him.  And a lonely, and bereft Damon exits the “jail” stage left.

And if the episode ended here, I would have been happy . . . very happy.  Not because I want Alaric to be dead, of course.  But because I think this would have been a fitting and poignant send off, for a much beloved character . .  . (who’s going to be starring on another show on the CW soon, anyway) . . .

But nooooo .  . . we still have about five minutes left in the episode.  And it only takes about five minutes for everything to go to hell in a bloody hand basket . . .

“Hey, remember that time when I ate you in this gym?  Good times!”

After a couple sweet scenes, featuring various Mystic Falls’ couples comforting each other, in the wake of the “loss of Alaric” Matt and Jeremy: (“Let’s do shots for the Dead Alcoholic,)”

Bonnie and Not-Brother Jamie: (“I’m so sad about Alaric, even though I’ve shared maybe two scenes with him, since the pilot episode. Dad’s not home.  Let’s screw.”)

And Stefan and Elena: “Here’s the gym where I made you feel really bad, by turning off my emotions, and trying to eat you.  Feeling bad makes you human.  Let’s screw.”) . . .

. . . annoying ass Esther returns again . . .

. . . just we thought we were finally rid of that pucker lipped ho.  This time, she’s in Bonnie’s dreams.

Mother Effer (Or should I say, “Mother Esther?”)

Poor Bonnie . . . always a plot device  . . . never a bride.  Off she goes in her Esther-induced trance to almost dead Alaric’s jail to give the leaving Damon, one of her famous migraines . . .

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“One of these days, I’m going to invest in a really good helmet.”

 . . . and to force feed herself to Alaric.  In the final moments of the episode, Alaric awakens as a Robot Vampire version of himself, armed with a big weiner stake, and out for revenge.

Buffy Alaric VAMPIRE the Vampire Slayer

Silly Scooby Gang . . . you should have let Damon break his neck, when you had the chance.

Next week on TVD, more BAAAAAD Alaric beating people up and breaking sh*t  . . .

. . . at least, until they kill him again . . . probably for good this time.  But since they had the funeral already (and Alaric’s already died about 85,000 times since the pilot episode), this one is probably going to be a bit anti-climactic.  Alaric Saltzman has officially become the Boy Who Cried Dead.

Did I mention we already have a webclip?

One things for sure, with only two episodes left in the season, TVD is going to really have to up its game to wow its increasingly tough to please fanbase.  We’ve seen it all, these past three seasons: murder, cannibalism, sex, sacrifice,  death, destruction, doppelganger hijinks.  What can they possibly throw at us now? 🙂  You’re guess is as good as mine . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

When things go bump (and grind) in the night . . . – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Heart of Darkness”

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The moment I got an electric shock from fondling my television screen . . . Totally worth it.

Welcome back, Fangbangers!  Long time, no fangirl!  Just in case you missed it, this week on TVD, ELENA FINALLY KISSED DAMON . . . and they humped against a dirty motel wall . . . and did some rather naughty things with their fingers in bed . . . it was all so deliciously tawdry, and long awaited, that I spent much of the episode celebrating . . .

Also, there was THIS . . .

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Oh, and I guess some other stuff happened too . . .

So, let your Big Bad Alter Ego out to play, because this episode of TVD is rated “M” for “More Makeouts Than We’ve Seen All Season.”

The Mysterious Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Saltzman

We begin the episode, in the basement of La Casa de Rich and Awesome, also known as ‘The Time Out Corner for Misbehaving Salvatores and Friends.”  That little cage sees more action than a motel that rents by the hour i.e. the place where Damon and Elena shacked up this week   I mean, think about it.  Stefan goes there when he’s all Mean and Rippery.

Damon “rested there,” while he suffered from a nasty case of were-rabies.

Elijah vacationed there, during one of his many Temporary Deaths.

And now it’s Multiple Personality Disorder Alaric’s turn!

Psychotic or not, you have to give Alaric credit for his willingness to endure self-imposed lockdown, so that his Jack Nicholson from The Shining Other Self doesn’t run off and murder all his friends, while he sleeps.

However, when Elena popped by to offer him some food and light reading . . .

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 . . . I couldn’t help but wonder how long he’d been down there, and what the Good History teacher was doing about the all-important Three S’s” of Life (sh*t, shower, shave).  Because I definitely didn’t see a toilet in there . . . or a hose.  So, unless Warden Stefan was willing to act as chaperone, I’m thinking that place smelled pretty darn rank.

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Anywhoo . . . Elena’s real reason for visiting Alaric, of course, has more to do with her, than with him.  After all, she’s going on a little road trip to Denver with Damon to sow her wild sex oats  “rescue Jeremy,” and she needs a little moral support from her erstwhile father figure.

Understandably,  Alaric is pretty grumpy about the idea that Damon and Elena will be off exploring one another’s nether regions, while he’s busy playing “Find the Stake” with Stefan.  I mean, from the looks of things, it’s been a while since Prisoner Alaric has received a conjugal visit from the Good Doctor Crazy Nanny Carrie Meredith.  (Apparently, attempted murder is not so great for your sex life.  Who knew?)

Except . . . as it turns out, ALARIC’S a total psycho, which means he and Crazy Nanny Carrie are kind of perfect for one another . . . 

Alaric wonders out loud how Stefan is feeling about this Delena Sexcation.  And Elena responds that it was HIS IDEA!  Well now, this takes the concept of Brotherly Love to a whole new level, doesn’t it?

“Bye honey!  Be SAFE!  Have fun dry humping my brother!

A bit of awkwardness ensues, when Elena pops by La Casa de Rich and Awesome to meet up with Damon, and Stefan meets her at the door.  “Have fun trying to coax that Big Stick out of Alaric,” Elena offers helpfully.  (No, she doesn’t actually say that.  But I kind of wish she did.)

“Be safe,” Stefan replies morosely, as Damon whisks Elena toward the door.

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Oh don’t you worry your pretty little head about that, Steffie.  You know vampires can’t impregnate humans or spread STDs!  Though they do love to try . . .

Battle of the Blondes

We then move over to Mystic Falls High, where the students are hard at work preparing for their Bloodbath Prom . . . er . . . I mean Decade Dance.  Seriously, at this point the administration should just pick a day at random, where they line the students up against a wall, and randomly slaughter them, Hunger Games style.  It would be much more efficient.  But while we are on the subject of high school, does anyone else find it ironic that 1,000-year old vampire, Rebekah, seems to be the only one who regularly attends?

Caroline and Rebekah are apparently having a contest to see which of them can out “Regina George” the other.

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And the passive aggressive insults are flying across the gym like dodgeballs . . .  Personally, I think Caroline won this fight, though.  Her, “at least I don’t have sex with everyone I make eye contact with,” comment was filled with win.

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(Everybody knows that “slut jokes and fat jokes,” are the girlfight equivalent of “yo mama” jokes  . . .)  As for Rebekah’s retort . . .

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 . . . it probably would have been more effective if the two girls didn’t look so very much alike . . .  And yet, when Blonde Boy Matt sided with Rebekah, when it came to choosing a 20’s themed decade dance, over Caroline’s proffered 70’s one, it appeared that former featherweight champion, Vampire Barbie, might be forced to concede a victory in this round.  The latter stormed out of the gym in a huff, while Rebekah looked on, her face practically brimming with smug satisfaction . . .

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But, as it turns out, the jokes on Rebekah.  Apparently, Matt and Caroline orchestrated the entire argument, just to give Caroline an excuse to leave school, and engage in Sexy Times with Tyler.  (Seriously?  What is with all these guys offering up their ex-girlfriends as sexual sacrifices to the Altar of Alpha Male?)

Now, maybe this makes me a Bad Person.  But I would rather eat glue, than give an ex-boyfriend I’m not over yet, free reign to start boning my more attractive and probably better in bed rival . . .  It’s one thing to accept that your ex has moved on.  It’s quite another to give them an INVITATION to do it . . . particularly, when YOU aren’t getting any, yourself.

“Doh!” 

Boozing Buddies

Speaking of sacrificial males, Stefan has decided that in order for Bad Alaric to come out to play, Good Alaric needs to take a nap.  So, the Broody Vampire decides to speed matters along, by offering Alchyric some liquid lunch . . . which actually makes sense, since I’ve never seen the guy eat.  (You know how vampires only require blood for sustenance?  I’m starting to think the same concept applies to Alaric and Booze.)

Alaric, of course, tries to go all Dr. Phil on Stefan, and his mind boggling decision to get Elena to explore her feelings for Damon via road trip.  Stefan basically admits that in order for him to continue to pursue things with Elena, he has to know she isn’t lusting after his brother.  (Why Stefan?  It never stopped you, before.)

“Scoot over, brother.  It’s my turn to get the neck.”

Alaric and Stefan also reflect upon whether their Psycho and Ripper so-called alter egos, respectively, are really just themselves after a Bad Day.  “The same things that drive him, drive me,” Alaric reflects wisely.

Of course, if anyone knows anything about being driven by bloodlust to do Bad Things, it’s Stefan.  But for Alaric’s sake, he puts a kinder spin on things.  “It’s not you,” he reassures his buddy boy.  “It’s just your darkest parts.”  (Well, THAT sounds dirty . . .)

The “darkest parts” of Alaric’s Chunky Monkey, a.k.a. the chocolate fudge . . .

But while all this navel-gazing and moody self-reflection might BORE Alaric, it doesn’t necessarily put him to sleep.  This, of course, means more “physical” tactics will have to be employed.  And, unfortunately, I’m not talking about sex.  Though really, nothing sends a warm-blooded male to dreamland faster than a solid roll in the hay.  I’m referring to a good, old-fashioned ASS KICKING . . .

Fortunately, Klaus has magically appeared to deliver said ass-kicking.  And when Stefan gives his ex boyfriend the Cliff Notes version of the whole “Save the Cheerleader, save the World Destroy the Missing Stake.  Save the Vampire Bloodline,” concept, Klaus helpfully breaks Alaric’s neck, thereby FINALLY powering this starting-to-become-a-bit-draggy plot line forward.

Sweet Dreams, Good Alaric!  (And THANK YOU, KLAUS!)

“Have you met YOU?”

I have to admit I was a bit disappointed, when the episode cut directly to Damon and Elena, already in Denver.  I mean, isn’t the whole point of a Sexy Times Road Trip, the hours and hours of having absolutely nothing to do but stare at one another, and bond over the bad in-flight movie?

Obviously the duo MORE than made up for this, by the episode’s end.  But at this point in the game, I was a little peeved.

Damon and Elena find Jeremy alone at the batting cages, striking out, of course.  “I should have compelled him to be better at baseball,” Damon quips.  (I don’t know.  If I was a teenage boy, there are a few things I’d want to be compelled to be “better” at, but baseball isn’t one of them.)

“STRIKE ONE”

“STRIKE TWO”

“STRIKE THREE!  YOU’RE OUTTTT!”

 The duo quickly fill Jeremy in on at least part of the reason they are really here . . . to get “I See Dead People” Jeremy to “talk” to Rose, and find out which Original sired her, so that the Scooby Gang doesn’t kill that one.  “So, you came all the way up here to get me to talk to some dead vampire?”  Jeremy gripes.

No, we also came up here, to make sure that Ring of Immortality Ring your wearing hasn’t already turned you into a drooling, vampire-hating loony toons, like your guardian, Alchyric.  “Dead and vampire is redundant, but yes,” Damon replies.

Jeremy promptly informs his darling sister, who has effectively traveled across the country to have sex with Damon effectively prevent the extinction of vampire kind, that the Vampire Apocalypse is just going to have to wait.  Apparently, Mini Gilbert has much more important things to do than save the world . . . like whacking balls with a “dear friend.”

Remember that time, an episode or two ago, when  Jeremy told Elena over the phone that he was heading out to spend time with “some friends?”  And most of the fandom immediately took this a a sign that Jeremy, much like his guardian before him, had already taken a One Way Trip to Crazy Town?  In fact, many fans even went as far as to suggest that these “friends” Jeremy was referring to may actually be vampires he’d already murdered, in the same way he offed that hybrid, before being sent away in the first place . . .

As it turns out, fans were right to be worried about the fact that Jeremy made “a friend.”  Apparently, sexy little Jer is only allowed to have real “friends” if they belong to his sister, or secretly want to sleep with him.  “Didn’t you find it a little weird that you made a friend so fast?  Have you met you?”  Damon chastises Jeremy later for his poor judgment.

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So, yeah, long story short, Jeremy’s friend was “Kol,” a reveal that probably surprised precisely no one, since we knew the Original Vamp had been stalking Jeremy, and his new dog (See, at least Jeremy has a Man’s Best Friend), ever since the latter arrived in Denver.  That said, I must admit, I did feel a bit bad for Jeremy, when Kol admitted.  “You and I are not really buds,” before bashing Damon’s head in with an aluminum bat.  (Of course, I felt worse for Damon for being beaten by an aluminum bat.  But, I felt bad for Jeremy too!  I mean, everyone should have REAL friends right.  Even if those friends just so happen to be blood sucking sociopaths . . .)

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Eventually, Damon manages to stake Kol with something that ISN’T dipped in or made from white oak ash (i.e. good for temporary death nap, but nothing more), and the threesome escape the batting cages, relatively unscathed.  But  . . . with Kol knowing the groups whereabouts, they can’t well stay in Denver.  So, you know what that means.  It’s time to check into the Sex Motel!  (Can I get a hell yeah!)

In which I take back everything bad I ever said about Rose the Vampire . . .

Unfortunately, this vacation isn’t only for Delena pleasure.  It’s for business too.  So, upon arriving at the hotel Jeremy “I talk to dead people” Gilbert manages to channel Ghost Vampire Rose, through Damon’s memories of her.

When Damon first starts waxing poetic about Rose’s death being beautiful, and sweet, and blah, blah, blah, Elena thinks he’s blowing smoke up Jeremy’s ass.  And understandably so.  After all, the last time Elena saw Rose, she looked like this . .  .

. . . and was literally trying to chew Elena’s face off.  It’s not really an image one soon forgets.  Interestingly enough, it’s Jeremy, who has either already connected with Rose, or simply managed to get hi s hand on the TVD Season 2 DVD that corrects Elena’s misinterpretation of the situation.  “Damon was talking about the dream he gave her when she died,” he offers.

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(Damn, Ghost Whisperers, always thinking they know everything . .  .)  After the reunited pair get the banal chitchat out of the way . . . (Yes, Rose is still hot.  Yes, she misses Damon, but is NOT obsessed with him.) . . . things start to get really interesting.

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Now, those of you who have read my recaps before know full well, that I was far from Rose’s biggest fan.  I believe the nickname I used for her was “Boyfriend Stealer.”

In fact, for weeks after she died, I refused to use any other photograph to illustrate this character but her Were-Rabies Mugshot.

Here we go again . . .

 It wasn’t really anything personal.  It’s just that, as a Delena shipper, I found the fact that Rose was constantly humping Damon to be . . . well . . . how do I put this kindly .  . . REALLY ANNOYING!

That all changed when Elena told Jeremy THESE fateful words, “Tell Damon I’m rooting for him and Elena.”

That’s right, Fangbangers.  Apparently, my former fictional arch rival is a fellow Delena shipper.

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This means she and I have the incontrovertible bond of folks who share the same ship.  And, therefore, I must love her like a sister.  (It’s easy for me to do this, since I am an only child, and really have no concept of what “loving someone like a sister” actually means.)  So, Rose, if you are out there . . . in Heaven, or wherever it is that rabid vampires go .  . . I’m sorry for calling you Man Stealer, posting ugly pictures of you on the internet, and not being particularly sad when you died.  I truly hope you can forgive me.  Oh, and if you ever want to come to my house, and watch Season 2 of The Vampire Diaries with me on DVD (We can skip your death episode of course), I promise to invite you inside.

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Oh, but back to the real reason we called Rose.  Who sired her?  As it turns out, it wasn’t ANY of the Originals.  Rather, the woman who sired Rose was a girl named “Mary Porter,” a.k.a. Scary Mary.  (Well, this certainly complicates things.)  Though Rose doesn’t know where Scary Mary lives off hand, apparently there’s some Vampire Phone Chain she can tap into.  Rose promises the Scooby Gang that she will do some research, and get back to them with an answer, before bidding them a fond adieu.

This, of course, means Damon, Elena and Jeremy can’t leave until they hear back from Rose.  Damon calls Stefan with the AWESOME . . . er . . . I mean terrible news.  “We’re stuck in a motel,” says Damon glibly.

The look on Stefan’s face upon hearing this admission is totally priceless.  Sorry, buddy.  But hey, you wanted Elena to explore her feelings for Damon.  And now she’s going to have an entire night in a not particularly big bed to do just that . . .

Mother/Daughter bonding?  (Yeah, we should have remembered that NEVER really happens on this show.)

Back at La Casa de Richer and Awesomer, But Not as Well Decorated (also known as the Originals’ house), Matt drives Rebekah home from school.  And she is so impressed that a boy actually did something nice for her, that she looks like she wants to hump his leg.  All joking aside, I REALLY these two together, and hope they both live long enough on this show to make a go of it.

“Thank you!  I WILL have a nice life.  Because I’m the only human left on this show . . . unless you kill me, of course.”

Rebekah’s good mood is short-lived though.  Because when she crosses the threshhold into her home she’s greeted by none other than her miserable murderous, slightly bug-eyed Mommy.  Mommy Dearest tells Rebekah that the latter really should have no hard feelings about the whole “I tried to kill you” thing, because she’s dying now too.  We all know how starved Rebekah is for ANY show of love and kindness.  So, of course, she cracks immediately, cradling her mother’s hands as the latter . . .  “dies.”

In the words of Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.  “Big mistake . . . HUGE!”

“Tell him to suck it,” and other moments of Forwood Cave Porn

Meanwhile a much happier reunion is occurring in the Forest Where Bad Things Happen.  I really do love how horny Caroline and Tyler always seem to be.  I mean, think about it, whenever they aren’t broken up, these two are ALWAYS, ALWAYS boning.  This week they were almost too busy boning to engage in any dialogue at all.

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They boned against the tree .  . . They boned against the cave wall . . . They boned on the cave floor.

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They would have boned at Caroline’s house.  But they couldn’t because Lizard Forbes was home, which meant they actually had to talk.  Well, that don’t go over so well . . .

(Yes, before you guys, all jump down my throat, I know that Caroline and Tyler had a very sweet post coital conversation on the cave floor, during which Caroline said Klaus should suck it (HE WISHES!), and admitted to Tyler that if the Scooby Gang killed Klaus he would die too.  Caroline and Tyler are fully capable of engaging in adult conversation.  They’d just much rather have sex.  And there’s nothing wrong with that.  I mean, have YOU seen them?  I’d bone all the time too . . .)

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But back to Caroline’s house, where everything went to hell, and all because Caroline just COULDN’T bear to throw away that darn pony picture that Klaus drew her.  Ruh-roh!  Tyler didn’t like that one bit.  And I for one, think his anger was justified.  I mean, the way I see it, if a sociopathic psycho killer draws a picture of you, there are only two rational reasons why you would want to keep it.  (1) He’s a FAMOUS psycho killer.  And you plan on selling the picture on E-bay for a crapload of money.  (2) You’re hot for the psycho killer.

Sorry Caroline . . . we haven’t seen you on E-bay.  So, I’m thinking it’s option 2 for you . . .

Meanwhile, over at the Looooooooove Shack . . .

In which Elena finally ravages Damon, a.k.a. YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYY!!!

His suspicion piqued by Rose’s offhand comment, Jeremy understandably wants to know what’s going on between Elena and Damon.  The problem is that Elena’s not quite ready to admit what’s going on to herself yet .  . . at least not for another hour or so.  But Jeremy takes the hint anyway, and lets Elena and Damon share the second bed, while he sleeps alone.  Smart boy . . .

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Later that night, Elena is watching an open shirted Damon strut around the hotel room with his shirt hanging open (which is my FAVORITE Damon Look, by the way), and looking hotter than I’ve seen him look like .  . . EVER.

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And this is including all those shower scenes!  She’s staring him like she wants to swallow him whole.  And even though she tries to pretend she’s sleeping when he turns around, he notices . . . as all hot guys notice, when girls are ogling them like construction workers.

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Sensing an opening (smart boy), Damon crawls into bed with Elena, but lays on his back, so as not to make her feel pressured.  It’s not the first time they’ve slept together.  But it IS the first time Elena has seemed so very eager.  And Damon doesn’t want to screw up the moment.

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Elena starts the conversation, as she turns toward Damon, her eyes roving his mostly naked body.  Her eyes are already filled with yearning and wanting.  I suspect it’s already taking all her strength not to jump him right here and now.  But she’s got to treadly lightly too, as this is a “test of her true feelings.” And she doesn’t want her hormones to get in the way.

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“You never told me what you did for Rose,” Elena muses.

“It wasn’t about you,” Damon responds wisely.

It’s an important point to make.  Because, as far as Elena has always been concerned, Damon only did good, and selfless things for Elena’s benefit, because he loved her, and sought her approval.  But Damon’s selfless actions with regard to Rose, really didn’t have anything to do with Elena, or even with love for that matter.  Damon did what he did, because he cared about Rose as a friend, and because it was . . . wait for it . . . the right thing to do.  In fact, when he had the opportunity to tell Elena about it, when she comforted him later in the episode, he chose not too, because, as he said, it had nothing to do with Elena or his love for her.

Elena can be dense sometimes, but even she recognizes a selfless gesture when she sees one.  And this gesture of Damon’s is starting to make Elena feel all tingly in her pants.  You can see her face flush, and breathing quicken, even though it is dark.  As much as Elena “loves” Stefan, I don’t recall a time where she ever seemed this incontrovertibly turned on by his mere presence and the sound of his voice.

“Why don’t you let people see the good in you?”  Elena muses.

I love what Damon said here . . .  “When people see good, they expect good.  And I don’t want to have to live up to anyone’s expectations.”

Those two sentences explain so much about who Damon is, and why he behaves the way he does.  In the same way Rebekah craves affection, Damon fears rejection.  And why not?  In a way, he’s been rejected all his life . . . by his father . . . by his brother . . . by the women he loves.  So, rather than put himself out there, and risk being rejected again, Damon turns inward.  He pretends to be cold and heartless, because it’s easier that way.  Because if people saw how truly large his heart was, they might toy with it, and break it.  And he’s simply not ready to bear the brunt of that pain for another eternity.

Of course, we have seen Damon show his goodness to many people . . . people he loves and cares about . . . like Stefan, Elena, Alaric, and Rose.  But he always does so with a caveat.  “I don’t do GOOD,” he tells them all . . . a pleading refrain.

When what he really means is, “Please don’t break my heart again.”

Elena understands all this instinctively, which is why she’s now so incredibly hot for Damon, she can’t breathe.   She turns her body toward the ceiling, mimicking his earlier gesture, but not before she reaches for his hand . . . What starts as a gesture of solidarity and understanding, becomes something much more . . . intense.  Seconds later, these two are having some serious Hand Sex.  There’s rubbing, massaging, groping and fondling.  Put it this way, if these were any other body parts, aside from fingers, this scene would be rated NC-17.

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Can you blame Elena for needing to go outside for some “air?”  And, more importantly, can you blame Damon for following her?  He knows a turned on hot tottie when he sees one!

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 By the time Damon approaches Elena, she’s literally gasping for breath.  She can’t resist any longer.  She grabs him, and kisses him intensely.  He throws her against the wall of the dirty motel passionately, as he kisses her chest and neck . . . there is not a single erogenous zone left untouched.  (Well . . . maybe ONE erogenous zone.)  She’s moaning, he’s panting.  It’s the dry hump of all dry humps.  And it is awesome.  And for one brief minute, the world is a perfect SEXY place.

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And then Cockblock Jeremy comes and ruins it all . . .

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Apparently, Rose has found Scary Mary in Texas, or wherever.  Who cares?  I want more Delena Almost Sex!  I’ve waited THREE SEASONS FOR THIS, DAMMIT!  Let’s relive it, shall we?

Where’s Fake Friend Kol when you need him?

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Vampire Hoarders – Scary Mary Edition

All sexual frustration aside, you know what?  I’m kind of disappointed that we never got to meet Scary Mary.  I mean, if DAMON thought she was creepy,  she must have really been a piece of work.  And yet, not creepy enough for our Bad Boy Vamp not to screw her in the past.

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That IS pretty Scary . . . Mary . . . 

“I said she was creepy, not ugly,” Damon quips, as Damon and Elena wander her haunted farmhouse of freakishness.  (They made Jeremy wait outside.  “Why so you two can make out more?”  Jeremy griped.  WE WISH!)

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Don’t mind if we do  . . .

Of course, Kol killed Scary Mary, before they got there.  Now, not only will we never get to meet Scary Mary.  We aren’t going to find out which Original sired her . . . probably for another season or so.  Maybe I’m exaggerating.  But I’m starting to think not.  Kol starts beating Damon up again.  Because it seems that poor Damon can’t go two episodes without getting torture or a beat down.  That’s just the price you pay for being a stud, I guess.

On a shippers note, I did love how both Elena and Damon put themselves in harms way to protect their makeout buddies.  “Don’t you touch her,” Damon growled, thereby causing my panties to drop again for about the 80th time this hour.

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But be wary, Delena fans.  Angst is-a comin . . .

In which Elena screws everything up (AGAIN),  but Rose gives us hope . . .

Outside Scary Mary’s house, Damon and Elena fondle one another’s wounds, as we know they LOOOOVE to do with one another.

But Damon makes the mistake of asking Elena what her sudden change of behavior is all about.  “Stefan thinks I have feelings for you,” Elena mumbles pathetically.

“Do you?” Damon asks stupidly?

(Really Damon?  You have to ask.  I mean, did you WATCH that hotel scene?)

“I don’t know,” replies Elena.

(AGRRRRHHHHH!  These people are killing me!)

Then, Elena has to go be all b*tchy, and admit that part of her was hoping that Damon would sabotage their makeout session, so Elena wouldn’t have to face the fact that she’s in love with someone who isn’t SAINT Stefan.

As frustrating as this scene was, I have to say, I was super proud of Damon for staunchly refusing to behave badl, thereby giving Elena an excuse to deny her feelings, and go running back to Stefan again.  Things may have ended badly between Damon and Elena, this week.  But I think, overall, it was a positive thing that Damon held his ground and leveled the playing field.  It’s about time, Elena chose a Salvatore once and for all, based on her true feelings, and not on some lame technicality . . .

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On the car ride home, Ghost Rose whispers in Jeremy’s ear that Damon and Elena had a fight, which is why they are now not talking, whereas, prior to this, they were eating one another’s faces.  (Well, THANKYOU, Captain Obvious!  And here, I thought they had just caught a bad case of mono / bronchitus, from all that kissing they were doing earlier.)

But like I said, I can’t bash Rose any more . . . especially not when she assumes the voice of the entire Delena fandom, by explaining why exactly, Stefan is the “safe” choice for Elena (because Rippers are SUPER safe), while Damon is the SEXY choice.  “She makes him a better person.  But he changes her too,” she explains surprisingly eloquently.  Damon challenges [Elena].  He makes her question her beliefs.  He is either the best thing for her or the worst.”

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Well, I’m going to go with THE BEST . . . but, other than that, I really couldn’t have said it myself.  I never thought I’d say this, but THANK YOU, Rose.  Thanks a lot.  (And, hey, if you ever want a side career, in TV recapping, you know who to call . . .)

Welcome back, Psycho Killer!

Back in Psycho Killer rehab, Alaric has woken up from his neckbreaking still himself . . . unfortunately.  Now, Stefan has to resort to beating Good Alaric up, in order to get Bad Alaric to come out and play.  Alaric even removes his ring, to raise the stakes.  It’s a surprisingly unpleasant scene, with Alaric bleeding everywhere, and Stefan desperately trying to fight the bloodlust he NEEDS to make this happen.

Eventually, Psycho!Alaric does appear.  And he starts flinging insults at Stefan like it’s his job.  “You’re pathetic,” he sneers.  “You’re nothing,” etc. etc.

But Psycho!Alaric isn’t all that smart, apparently, because it only takes him about two minutes to reveal that he hid the stake in the cave “where no vampire can get it.”  (Seriously, what’s with these people and caves?  Doesn’t anyone in Mystic Falls like to hang out above ground anymore?)

Of course, by the time Stefan and Psycho!Alaric arrive upstairs, Klaus and Rebekah are already waiting for them.  “Rebekah” gallantly offers to escort Psycho!Alaric to the cave, so Klaus can flirt some more with Stefan.  Honestly, Klaus has such a big boner for Stefan it’s not even funny.  It makes his boner for Caroline, look like . . . well . . .a handdrawn picture of a pony.  “I want my friend back,” Klaus gripes.

But Stefan isn’t about to be won over so easily this time.  He’s accepted his Ripperness, dagnamit!  And now NO ONE can control him . . . well . . . except for maybe Elena . . . boyfriend is TOTALLY whipped.

Here comes the TWIST . . .

Meanwhile, over in the caves, Psycho!Alaric, knowing he’s in grave danger of an Original Ass-Whipping / Cave Murder, tries to strike a deal with Klaus Barbie, before he crosses the threshhold back to where vampires CAN travel.  “Only one Original has to die,” he pleads.  “Help me, and I’ll make sure it’s not you.”

A fair enough proposal, but Rebekah isn’t having it . . . as she Boldly Goes into the Cave Where No Vampire Has Gone Before.  You see . . . because Rebekah isn’t a vampire anymore . . . She isn’t even Rebekah, anymore.  She’s MAMA “I WANT ALL VAMPIRES TO DIE” Esther  . . . .

. . . who’s currently borrowing her daughter’s body, like I used to borrow my best friend’s clothing in junior high.  (Her body fits better though . . . My best friend was WAY TOO TALL for me to fit in her pants.)

I smell an ALLIANCE OF EVIL . . .

And that was “Heart of Darkness” in a nutshell . . . next week we get another Deadly Decade Dance.  You can check out the Extended Promo, and a sneak peek here . . . (I’d give you the Canadian one too, if I could find it . . .)

Until next time, my fellow Fangbangers!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

Get OUT of my HEAD! – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Break on Through”

[Note:  The recap for “Murder of One is on it’s way!  Be sure to check back for it, within the next 24 hours.  It should be available no later than early Saturday morning, March 31.  Thanks for your patience!]

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Hey there, Fangbangers!  This week on TVD, Alaric hopped aboard the Crazy Train.  Both Damon and Rebekah learned the hard way why you should never let a 900-year old vampire touch your . . . head . . . in bed.  Bonnie rejoined the I Have Sh*tty Parents Club, membership: every single character on this show.  Stefan moved one step closer to becoming a “Social Drinker.”  And Elena . . . did a lot of pouting?  So, choke down a nice tall glass of “B Positive,” because it’s time for another TVD-cap . . .

“We are predators, not puppies.”

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Don’t you just hate it, when you are getting an MRI, and the mirror image above your head starts TOTALLY eye-f*cking you . . . but you can’t look away, because the technician running the machine told you not to move?  Alaric can relate . . .

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“Hey sexy, what’s shaking?  Whaddya say, after this we go hit up the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, have a few drinks together and make some bad decisions.”

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“Well, that depends .  . . are YOU buying?”

While Alaric is busy being hit on by his Psycho Killer alter ego, Elena wonders out loud how Crazy Nanny Carrie / Meredith figured out that Alaric’s predilection for Man Jewelry was turning him evil.  (“Is there like a course for that in med school?”)  Meredith claims she learned this information from an old childhood story, regarding her ancestors.  “Fells are notorious busy bodies,” she jokes lamely . . . which, if you think about it, is exactly what got Vampire Journalist Logan Fell killed . . . and is probably what will ultimately kill Meredith/ Crazy Nanny Carrie.  (You know the famous saying, “Curiosity killed the Fell!”)

The CAT scan comes out normal, thereby proving that Alaric’s “Bad Seed” problem is a purely supernatural one.  It’s time to ditch the Man Jewelry, I guess!  Alaric gives the odious ring to Elena.  (Somewhere off screen, that Smeagol guy from Lord of the Rings, looks on with lust.)

“Don’t worry, Alaric!  Smeagol will take that Man Jewelry off your hands . . .”

Then, Damon magically appears to collect Alaric, and continue his three-season long foreplay with Elena.  Remember last week, when Elena caught the Salvatores chowing down at the “All Blonde Chick Buffet?”  Well, apparently, so does Elena.  And she uses it as the perfect opportunity to get under Damon’s skin . . .

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 . . . nevermind the fact that her guardian and her brother are still on a One-Way trip to Wacky Serial Killer Town.

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Apparently, Elena doesn’t think Damon is the best “Role Model,” when it comes to healthy neck eating habits.  All these different women!  Poor Steffie will get indigestion!  Instead, Elena suggests the “All Elena’s Arm” starvation diet . . . you know, because that worked SO WELL, last time . . .

Damon decides to lay down the law with Elena . . .

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“Hey!  What’s wrong with puppies aside from the fact that Stefan used to eat them?”

Deep down, both Damon and Elena know that, when it comes to Stefan, neither total abstinence, nor little nips of Doppelganger flesh, are long-term solutions to Stefan’s century long problem.  He needs yummy bags of Soccer Mom . . . and the occasional cute college co-ed!  He needs to go back to his vampire roots.  And most importantly, Stefan needs to learn a little self-control . . . which might have the unintended consequence of making him better in bed .  . . not as good as Damon, of course.  But better . . .

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Oh, I don’t know Elena . . . Damon has spent three seasons, doing this . . .

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  . . . and this . . .

 . . . and this . . .

 .  . . without jumping YOUR bones . . .

I think it’s safe to say he knows a thing or two about “self control.”

Speaking of self-control . . .

“B Positive!”

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Over at the Bennett Farm, Caroline is taking on the role of Nu-Stefan, in an attempt to make Abby a slightly less crappy vampire than she is a mother to Bonnie.  Truth be told, there probably isn’t enough “B positive” in the world, to make Mama Bennett smile . . . especially now that she can’t flirt with and fondle the local plant life, anymore . .  .

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“Oh, Pink Flower, your stamen is SOOOO big, it TOTALLY turns me on!”

(This reminds me .  . . I forgot to water my cactus, this year.)

Meanwhile, over at the Wickory Bridge, Damon gets to reunite with not one, but TWO of his 900 +-year old sex partners.

 (I guess he has a thing for older women . . . and, of course, much, much younger ones . . .)

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Hot for Teacher . . .

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 I guess Mystic Falls has finally decided to fix that ole’ bridge everybody is always falling off, and drowning.  (Good for them!)  Damon offers to take Alaric and his new girlfriend, Dr. Secret Psycho, there for some fresh air.  You know, because there’s nothing like spending time on a Man-Made Death Trap to make a Supernaturally-Made Death Trap feel less alone in the world.

“I feel so personally connected to this bridge.  I bet it’s killed a lot of Founder’s Council Members over the years too.  Good work, brother!” 

Mama Lockwood, who has no idea she’s talking to a serial killer of FOUNDER’S COUNCIL members takes this opportunity to bug Alaric about his forgetting to bring by some old sign, in honor of the re-opening of the bridge.  (Believe it or not, this detail will actually be important later.)

“I’m sorry, Mama Lockwood, I’ve been kind of busy carving all your friends up like the big fat Thanksgiving turkeys they are it just slipped my mind.” replies Alaric politely.

Shortly thereafter, Alaric and Crazy Nanny Carrie exit stage left, allowing Damon some alone time with His Women.

“Ladies, ladies.  There is no need to fight.  My manhood is big enough for both of you . . . and Elena.” 

After doing a little flirtatious sleuthing, Damon quickly surmises the reason for both of his lady friends’ sudden reappearances on the bridge.  Rebekah has been looking into some random tree, though Damon is not quite sure why.  As for Sage, she’s apparently been pining for that Death Wish-Having, Mama’s Boy Finn for the 900-years, since he turned her, and was hoping he’d stop by.  (Well, at least now we know why she and Damon get along so well!  And here, I thought it was just about the amazing sex.)

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Always eager to spread bad news, Rebekah bounds over to tell Sage that Finn has left town, and that his heart only belongs to one woman, his wackjob mother . . .

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Primed for a little lady fighting, Sage offers to help Damon figure out what exactly it is that Rebekah is hiding from him.  All he has to do is turn on the charm, a little bit, and get her to pop by La Casa de Rich and Awesome for some Sexy Times.  Sage knows full well, that no woman in her right mind would ever refuse an invitation to Damon’s Bed of Champions . . .

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 . . . least of all the vulnerable, and perpetually sex-starved, Rebekah . . . who, like everyone on this show (except for maybe Psycho Alaric) really just wants to be LOVED, right?

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As Sage had predicted, Rebekah doesn’t need much convincing.  And soon enough, our fabulous vampire threesome have made plans for an X-rated Date with Destiny . . .

Meanwhile, back in Broody Town . . .

Well, THAT’S a pretty creative use of a knitting needle . . .

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Elena has conveniently invited herself into La Casa de Rich and Awesome because she heard about Damon and the threesome.  Supposedly, she’s come to check out a book from Salvatore Library on her batsh*t crazy ancestor, Samantha.  She finds Stefan in the living room, drinking blood of course.  (This guy is clearly an emotional binge eater . . . How does he never get bloated?  I mean, I know he’s dead and all, but you have to wonder sometimes, where it all goes.)

Damn you, and your super fast vampire metabolism.  DAMN YOU!

Knowing how much his girlfriend hates to read (I mean, let’s face it, girlfriend hasn’t set foot in a classroom in about six months.), Stefan chivalrously offers to give Elena the Cliff Notes version of that Big Bad Book she’s cradling in her arms.  Long story, short: her ancestor chopped her head open with a knitting needle, and bled to death in the loony bin.  (OK, who the heck gave the INSANE SERIAL KILLER a knitting needle?  Someone needs to put a dollar in the Moron Jar, stat.)

Ever the Bastion of Positivity, Stefan concludes his story, by giving it a “feel good” moral: “P.S. Alaric’s probably going to end up attempting to crochet an afghan with his brain too.  And there’s basically nothing you can do about it.  Thanks for playing!  Better luck next time.”

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Yeah, she didn’t really hit him.  I am just saying that, if she did, he totally would have deserved it . . .

“Two is company, three is a party.”

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(In my next life, I would like to be The Guy Who Covers Ian Somerhalder’s Weiner with Bits of Fabric to Appease the Censors.  That guy always seems to be one sneeze away from a Wardrobe Malfunction.)

When Damon arrives home from his Double Date at Death Bridge, Stefan is FUMING MAD . . .