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A Birthday and Five Funerals – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Our Town”

[Greetings, Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars Fans!  I know I owe you all two recaps today.  Unfortunately, I was feeling a bit under the weather last night.  However, I hope to get both recaps out to you by early January 18th (all fingers crossed).  This means my Glee-cap should arrive by January 19th.  Sorry about the delay.  And thank you for being patient!]

BONNIE: “Make a wish, Caroline.”

CAROLINE: “I wish to get more action than Elena, this year.” 

 

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“Nice, Caroline!  I thought we were friends.  Do the words, ‘three seasons of virtual celibacy’ mean anything to you?” 

Greetings Fangbangers!  I’m going to admit that some very strange things happened to me during this episode . . . things I never thought would happen, ever . . .  Here they are,  in no particular order:

(1) Bonnie, as per usual, was judgmental toward Elena, about something she did last week. And I AGREED WITH BONNIE!

(2) Matt Donovan actually made me smile.  (This hasn’t happened, since he got high, back in “The Birthday.”  Perhaps, I only like Matt when he’s wasted .  . .)

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(3) Elena refused a second kiss from Damon, and I was totally OK with it.  (BECAUSE, NEXT TIME, SHE’S GOING TO KISS HIM, INSTEAD!)

(4) I found myself incredibly turned on by a (sort of) love scene between Caroline, and someone who wasn’t Tyler . . .

Clearly, the apocalypse is upon us .  . .

Also this week, I found myself, at various points during the episode, seriously questioning the respective motivations of Stefan, Klaus, and Tyler.

Are these men behaving out of self-interest,  genuine concern for their lady friends, or, in the case of Tyler, a slighty modified version of compulsion?  Also, would they all have been better off keeping their hands (and teeth) to themselves?

All in all, it was a very intriguing episode .  . . one I very much look forward to “biting into” with you, right now . . .

(By the way, special thanks to Andre, for providing me some seriously amazing screencaps for this episode.  I just wish we had a TVD tumblr, so that I can share them all with you.)

Channeling “Frustrations”

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“I will not imagine Damon naked.  I will not imagine Damon naked . . . I will not . . .”

“Dammit!”

So, Fangbangers, have you ever been really horny stressed out?  Do you sometimes find yourself with so much excess desire and sexual energy, you simply must find someone to bone some way to release it?  I have.  And whenever I feel this way, I tend to GO BONE DAMON SALVATORE, THIS INSTANT, ELENA! do one of two things . . .

(1) workout my frustrations with some good old-fashioned humping physical exertion; or

(2) get naked cool off in a nice, refreshing shower.

When you think about it, it actually makes a lot of sense that Elena ended up doing the former, especially, in light of her recent epic porch smooch with Damon.

It’s also no surprise that, Damon did the latter.  (After all, let’s face it, it’s been WAY TOO LONG, since we got to see Mr. Smoulderhotter NAKED!)

 I’ve never been so envious of a towel, in my entire life.

I mean, Damon’s always been known to be quite the suds-loving dude . . .  He takes his personal hygiene VERY seriously . . .

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But aside from all that, Damon is in a REALLY good place right now.

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And . . . now, I’m jealous of the shower head . . . 

After three seasons of angst, and unrequited love, the elder Salvatore Brother has FINALLY unburdened himself to Elena.  He’s exposed himself to her, in the rawest, most personal way, and SHE reciprocated!

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 It was everything he dreamed about.  And he’s totally satisfied with how it all turned out.

Elena, on the other hand, is CONFUSED, not to mention SERIOUSLY SEXUALLY FRUSTRATED.  It’s as if, through that kiss, Damon transferred years of horny angst, unrequited love, and giddy confusion from his shoulders onto her own . . .

The only way to release that tension will be for Elena to similarly unburden herself.  But, until she does that, something tells me she’s going to be thinking about that kiss for a VERY, VERY long time . . .

“Have you talked to Damon, today?”  Elena asks Alaric apprehensively, as she thrusts her body into that big sweaty hunk of punching bag.  (It’s a surprisingly girly comment, coming from our new warrior princess . . . Suddenly, she’s a preteen again, asking her best friend, if he thinks her crush likes her.)

Alaric clearly suspects something is going on between his surrogate kid, and his bromantic buddy, but, fortunately knows when to leave well enough alone . . .

“She could beat me up, for sure.” 

Meanwhile, over at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Stefan also might suspect that Damon’s gotten some tongue action (among other things), when the latter saunters out of his shower, naked except for a towel, looking surprisingly peppy, not to mention cocky as hell.

But if you were hoping for a brotherly bonding  / gossip session over the brother’s mutual Gal Friday, you will end up being sorely disappointed.  Stefan, who, by the way, hasn’t been laid in AGES .  . .

“Rub it in, why don’t ya?” 

 .  . .  is all business.  He wants the two of them over at Institution for Dead Witches on the Rag, ASAP, so that the pair can discuss Operation Kill Klaus.

As douchetastic and cold as Stefan has been, of late (He also seems to be wearing a heck of a lot more guyliner, since he went over to the dark side.), it was kind of fun to see the Salvatore Brothers back to their old schemes, and sibling banter.  We haven’t seen that from them, in a while . . .

Knock, Knock . . . (a.k.a. Funeral 1)

Knock, knock . . .

Who’s there?

Heartless Hybrid . . .

Heartless Hybrid who . . .

Oh crap!

Despite the fact that there are three other unopened coffins in our midst (one of which contains Elijah and his awesome hair) . . .

 . . . everyone only seems interested in that Mystery One . . .

“What are we?   Chopped liver?” 

We find Bonnie at the Institution, doing her own version of Bibbity Bobbity Boo over it . . .

Hey, I’ve got an idea.  Why doesn’t she try to light the coffin on fire, or give it a headache, like she used to do to Damon . . . 

 (only without the nosebleeds . . . Have we completely forgotten about the nosebleeds, writers?) to no avail.

That’s right, Bonnie.  I’m never letting you live this down . . . 

Later, Damon tries to bash it in with a crowbar.  That’s more like it.  I’m just waiting for a Batsh*t Crazy Stefan to come at the thing with an electric chainsaw.  Now, THAT would be awesome . . .

But, suddenly, just as Bonnie finishes her silly little rhyme, and Damon and Stefan reach the doorway to the Institution, the coffins disappear (What a clever little security system those witches have set up!)  Damon rushes inside to warn Bonnie.  Then, he and Stefan tag team and promptly de-heart our first anonymous hybrid victim of the evening.

Man, is it just me, or are these hybrids incredibly lame?

I don’t know, Klaus.  Maybe they get that from their mom’s side of the family?  But it seems to me like some of the Season 1 vampires, were about ten times more difficult to kill than these supposed Lean, Mean, Killing Machines . . .

Part vampire . .  . part werewolf . . . ALL LOSER?

“These hybrids are really bringing the neighborhood down,” snarks Damon, as he tosses the bloody heart on the floor.

No wonder he showers so much . . . 

Correction:  They WOULD be bringing the neighborhood down, if any of them were actually smart enough to survive longer than five minutes to do it . . .

A Very, Very Un-Birthday to YOU!

“I was originally going to write the letters in my own blood, but thought that might be inappropriate.” 

Over at school, Elena and Bonnie are busy decorating undead birthday girl, Caroline’s locker, when Elena announces that she has a confession to make.  “I kissed Damon, and it was so hot I nearly orgasmed, right there on my porch.  I’m so horny right now I could SCREAM. Jeremy’s leaving Mystic Falls, because I made Damon compel him to do so,” she admits, more or less.

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The look on Bonnie’s face, when she hears this, is just FILLED with judgment.  Can you imagine what her face is going to look like, when she learns Damon and Elena are boning?

She knows her ex would never willingly leave his family to battle evil, while he scurried off to someplace “safe.”  And she also knows how much Jeremy always hated the way everyone, especially his sister, always treated him like a toddler, and never let him play in any Scooby Games.  But, as angry as she is, Bonnie doesn’t say anything . . . yet.

Instead, she goes and asks Jeremy about why he’s leaving.  And when he provides her with the stock, Stepford Husband, compulsion response with which Damon has provided him, she gives him this smirk that says, “You are acting like a such a brainwashed tool, right now.  And you don’t even know it.”

For a second, it seems like Bonnie just might have gotten through to Jeremy.  But then he sees a shiny object (Ghost Anna?), and completely forgets that she exists.  Sorry, Bonster.  You may be right about this one.  But your ship has definitely sailed . . .

“I’m sorry. Damon has also compelled me to forget the name of that witch I used to screw.”

Meanwhile, an unusually Mopey Caroline arrives at school to find Tyler waiting for her in the parking lot.

“I could always ‘accidentally’ run him over with my car . . .” 

I know girls like Caroline.  Under normal circumstances, she’d probably show up to school on her birthday, wearing a tiara, a gold sequined dress, and a big button that says, “F*&k Kiss me, I’m a year older.”

“When I open my eyes, I better see lot of expensive presents in front of me, or else!” 

But our girl Caroline has changed, in more ways than one, since last year.  And the sight of her erstwhile beau isn’t making things any easier on her.

Speaking of subdued, the events of the past week seem to have finally gotten it through Tyler’s thick (but still adorable) hybrid skull that being “Gay for Klaus” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.  He apologizes profusely to Caroline for no longer being able to put her first, given how demanding his new lover happens to be.  Then, he sweetly slips an adorable silver charm bracelet into her hand, wishes her happy birthday, and exits stage left . . .

As the couple talk, there’s some song playing in the background, in which the lyrics repeat, “It’s over,” over and OVER again.  And there’s just something about it that really makes me want to break something.

Many fellow TVD fans have often complained about the LOUDNESS of the show’s background music.  But this was the first time it TRULY bothered me . . . like a too-loud laugh track, over a part of a sitcom that wasn’t particularly funny . . .

“Turn the music down, dammit, I’m trying to hear FORWOOD!” 

All this angst and pedantic music quickly become too much for Caroline.  So, her and her plaid Catholic School Girl Skirt both decide to take a sick day  . . .

How very Britney Spears, circa 1998 . . . 

When, she arrives back at her house, however, Elena, Matt, and Bonnie are there waiting for her.  (Did they all call in sick too?)

How many high school boys do you know who would willingly wear a bubble gum pink dunce cap? 

They’ve planned a tequila campfire party in her honor.  But Caroline, as we know, isn’t in a celebrating mood.  “[My birthday, this year] is just a reminder that I’m dead,” she gripes.  “I’m stuck in a filler year,” Vampire Barbie adds about her “forever 17” status.

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(I don’t know about 17 being a filler year, per se.  At least you can get your driver’s license, over and over again!)

But worry not, Caroline fans.  Because Elena Gilbert, Therapist to Vampires, knows exactly the kind of party that Caroline needs . . .

A Very Klefan Breakup (a.k.a Funeral 2)

Speaking of vampires who are desperately in need of both therapy and sex, it seems Klaus has crafted a comfy new coffin for his re-daggered sister, Rebekah (or, perhaps, he saved the old one . . . knowing it wouldn’t be long before he’d get sick of his sister, and need it again).

He tells Punky She-Hybrid to “Show Rebekah to her room,” while lovingly caressing the coffin.  And, for a moment, I’m reminded of that movie where Ryan Gosling started having intimate conversations with, and eventually, if I recall, marrying, a life-sized female doll . . .

But before Punky She-Hybrid can give Coffin Number 1, the grand tour of the Original Hybrid Suite, Stefan magically appears . . . (because, apparently, this is a day for Reunions with Ex-Boyfriends).

Klaus’ eyes light up when he sees his Steffypoo.  And for a moment, I think the ancient vampire truly believes that the two of them are about to kiss and have sex make up.

But before Klaus and Stefan can continue their weekly weiner-measuring contest, Stefan has some grievances to air about their relationship, “friends don’t strip friends of their free will,” whines Stefan, of Klaus’ Very Bad Boyfriend decision to render him a virtual zombie for three or four episodes.

“Must . . . eat . . . braaaaaiiiiins.” 

To Klaus’ credit,  he actually apologizes for this.  “I know that was extreme, but I can get a bit moody sometimes,” says the guy who has a habit of KILLING his relatives, for fun.   “I was hoping [now that all that is over and done], that we could pick up right where we left off,” he coos, the sexual suggestiveness of his statement, fairly clear, as he winks at his boy toy, and blows kisses in his direction.

But Stefan’s not giving in so easily, nor is he swayed, by Klaus’ decision to play the “Brother Card.”  In fact, Stefan’s SOOOO not down with the idea of a Klefan reunion that he CHOPS OF PUNKY SHE-HYBRID’S HEAD!

So, remember back when Stefan used to eat people’s heads off, and then glue them back on, because he felt bad about it?  Apparently, neither does he . . . 

And another one bites the dust . . .

I love how the decapitated body just stood there, for about three seconds, before finally crumbling to the ground. 

For those of you keeping track at home, out of Klaus’ merry band of hybrids, we now have two, without hearts, and two without heads.  Now, we just need some arms, legs, and torsos, up in this joint.  And we could have ourselves a mean game of Hangman!

But alas, Klaus decides to burn Punky She-Hybrid’s head, in all it’s stylish Angry Girl Band-loving glory.  This to me, seems like a real waste, especially when a “decorative sculpture” like this could really have spruced up Coffin Rebekah’s new bedroom . .  .

A Very Klyler Breakup?

But Stefan isn’t the only boy toy of Klaus’ that’s cheesed off at him.  Seemingly moments after Stefan the Decapitator has departed, in comes a snarling, feral-looking Tyler.  He’s not giving in to this “sire” thing.  No sir!  He’s his own man, dammit.

So, of course, Klaus has to send Tyler off on another errand: namely, bite Caroline, and give her were-hybrid rabies, like Rose and Damon, before her.

(Hmmm . . . interesting.  So, a hybrid bite can kill a vampire, just as easily as a werewolf one can, despite the fact that hybrids are, technically, part vampire.  What happens, when they bite themselves?) 

Tyler says “Hell to the No” to this errand, which I appreciated very much (Of course, I would have appreciated it much more, if his “Hell to the No” was followed by “Pretty please don’t kill Caroline, because I love her” . . .  as opposed to merely, “Why should I do it?” . . . the unspoken .  . . and, perhaps, unintentional, implication being that it would be OK, if someone else did it).

“See?  I should have run him over with my car!” 

Klaus pouts a bit, at his sex  slave’s surprising disobedience.  But, oddly enough, he ultimately lets Tyler off the hook, for this particular errand, without much fanfare . . . or does he?

In which it becomes shockingly apparent that the entire Founder’s Council is made up of vampires and psycho killers . . .

That night, Team Bad Ass, a.k.a. Alaric and Damon, attend one of those ridiculous faux-Founder’s Day parties at the Lockwood Mansion, so that they can later appear at one of those totally useless Anti-Vampire Council meetings.  While they wait, Alaric talks to Damon about how odd it is that Stefan’s gone balls out, evil, while Damon is in hero-mode, and playing house with Elena.  (You can always count on Alaric to say what everyone else is thinking . . .)

Speaking of Elena, “something’s up with [her],” Alaric confides in his bromantic buddy.

Damon smirks at this, undoubtedly imagining the way her tongue tastes.   But he reveals nothing.  Instead, he deflects, “I’m sure, whatever it is it starts with a ‘Stef’ and ends with an ‘an.'” He jokes.  (More like starts with a “DAM” and ends with an “IT’S ON!”)

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Crazy Nanny Carrie, er, I mean Meredith Fell then annoyingly magically appears to hit on Alaric some more, and remind us that, as a “Founding Fell,” she’s part of this Useless Council too . . .(Hey, you know who else was a Fell?  Season 1 Logan . . . the guy Damon and Alaric both killed . . . coincidence?)

Crazy Nanny continues to flirt with Alaric, and make weirdly threatening references to the fact that she still imagines throwing her ex boyfriend from high school off a bridge.  Woah, Crazy Nanny Meredith! Considering that you’re a doctor, it’s safe to say you’ve been out of high school for at least ten years.  It’s time to let go, psychopath . . .

Later, we see said ex-boyfriend and Meredith fighting about something.  The ex gets a bit rough with Meredith, and Prince Alaric comes to her rescue.  Instead of being mad at Alaric, the guy in question actually seems to pity him, even going so far as to warn him about the nutjob he’s about to start screwing.  (Clearly, this guy has watched One Tree Hill and Pretty Little Liars.)

Cause of death:  The use of too much hair product, at once . . . 

We later learn that this guy is the Town Medical Examiner, a.k.a. The Guy Who Lies and Says Residents Were Killed by Wild Dogs,  When They Were Actually Sucked Dry by Stefan Salvatore . . .

More interesting than Crazy Nanny Meredith’s fantasies of becoming Stephen King’s Carrie, and Medical Examiner Guy’s shockingly bad hair is the fact that “some British guy,” has apparently donated oodles of cash to Mystic Falls’ Founder’s Council.

Annnnd .  . . that’s how the Baddest Vampire of them All, and his Band of Strong, But Stupid, Hybrids all became honorary members of the Now Virtually 0% Human Anti-Vampire Council . . .  Would you believe that Klaus got his foot in the proverbial council door, by offering the group PROTECTION from Stefan?  Talk about the ultimate switcheroo.

To be honest, I was much less surprised that Carol Lockwood went along with her son’s new boyfriend’s plans, than I was that former vampire despiser, Lizard Forbes has suddenly gone out and bought herself a “Team Klaus” t-shirt.

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Is it possible that she is predicting a future romance for her Vampire Barbie daughter, and the Original Hybrid?  Stay tuned . . .

LIZ: “Bet you $20 they are boning by sweeps week.”

DAMON: “I’ll take that bet . . .” 

Speaking of Crazy!Stefan, he makes a go at killing, yet a third hybrid, upstairs in the Lockwood Mansion.  (This one, would have been another beheading . . . not very creative.  However, he is ultimately stopped by Peacekeeping!Damon.  Go figure! Damon’s passionate plea of “No dead hybrids at the Founder’s Party,” reminds me so much of Chris Rock’s “No sex in the Champagne Room,” that it makes me giggle.

Stefan, however, isn’t amused.  So, he storms off to go pee on some more proverbial trees, so as to mark his town territory, and “be the better villain,” so to speak.  And by “trees,” I mean “Elena” . . .

Meanwhile . . .

Here Lies Caroline Forbes . . .  (a.k.a. Funeral 3)

In the most morbid,  but surprisingly appropriate birthday party ever, Elena and the gang take Caroline to Fell’s tomb.  There, they decide to give her a FUNERAL . . . you know, because she’s dead . . . and stuff.  The idea, of course, is to get her to stop focusing on her OLD life of GETTING OLD, and start focusing on her NEW LIFE (which . . . is really, more or less, the same as her old one, except she occasionally drinks blood, and never ever will have to pay for Botox).

Then, Caroline proceeds to get mildly inebriated on tequila, and uses it as an excuse to drunk text Tyler.  (We’ve all been there. ;))  This prompts Elena to make a snide remark, and Bonnie to stick up for Caroline.  (AGAIN, I’m agreeing with Bonnie AGAIN!  What the heck is wrong with me?)  Apparently, liquor has loosened Bonnie’s lips enough for her to Elena what she really things of her decision to steal Jeremy’s free will, and send him away, possibly for good.

“Judging you . . . again.”

Matt gripes comedically, that all this catty girl talk is totally ruining Caroline’s kickass funeral.  So, BonBon leaves.  Enter Tyler to the tune of the song “Birthday Sex.”  (Now, THAT would have been a good soundtrack choice!)

Love Bites and Dating Dealbreakers . . .

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Tyler wants to talk to Caroline . . .  alone.  You see, his conversation with Klaus has taught him that he CAN, in fact say no. . .  maybe.  Of course, he’s thrilled . . . so thrilled, in fact, that he confesses his love to Caroline.  Now, they are kissing.  Now, they are humping against a tree.  Now, they are . . . BITING EACHOTHER’S NECKS????

Ruh-roh!  Apparently, some foreplay is just no longer acceptable, when you are a hybrid hooking up with a Vampire Barbie.  Caroline falls to the floor, a mixture of shock, accusation, and pain, on her face.

Gnarliest hickey ever . . . I think Tyler might need braces . . . 

To Tyler’s credit, he looks genuinely shocked at what he did.  He obeyed Klaus’ wishes after all, even though (I think) he clearly didn’t want to do so.  Now, if that ‘s not compulsion, I don’t know what is . . .

I would have liked for Tyler not to run off into the woods like a b*tch to leave Caroline dying in the forest.   But run off, he did.  In Tyler’s defense, Caroline asked him to leave.  And he DID go and get her help, which, I suspect, was also precisely what Klaus wanted him to do . . .

Meanwhile, an adorable wasted Elena and Matt tumble out of the tomb, in search of Caroline.  Just as they find her, Stefan knocks Matt unconscious, and steals Elena away, without so much as a “Happy Birthday,” to Dying Caroline.  Way to be a gentleman, ASSHAT!

Next thing we know, Stefan is speeding down the highway with a kidnapped, and super pouty, Elena.  He wants to drive her down to the bridge where they first met . . . you know, back when her parents drowned, and he rescued her?  Ahh .  . . memories.  In fact, Stefan wants to take reliving those memories all the way to the next level, by DRIVING OVER THE BRIDGE, AND DROWNING WITH ELENA . . .

Damon calls Elena for some phone sex, and is not-at-all pleased that his brother has picked up the phone.  He becomes even less pleased, when he learns what exactly Crazy!Stefan plans to do.

In an odd turn of events, Damon suddenly finds himself on the same side as Klaus.  He runs to warn his new friend, of what’s happening.  “Get rid of your hybrids, or he’s going to kill Elena,” Damon says, more or less.

“Sometimes, I wish YOU were my brother . . . you know . . . aside from the whole, leaving your siblings in coffins for 1,000’s of years . . . thing.” 

Initially, Klaus isn’t concerned.  He believes that Stefan ultimately loves Elena WAY too much to kill her.  So, therefore, he must be bluffing.  But when Klaus calls Stefan on the phone, he hears Elena’s anguished screams . . . screams which sound so very real.  Then he hears Stefan, do the one thing, that to Elena, is worse than killing her out right, he force feeds her his blood . . . the exact same action for which he attacked Damon, last season.

Now, Klaus seemed fairly certain that Stefan wouldn’t kill Elena.  But he’s much less certain he won’t turn her into a vampire, thereby making yet another Petrova Doppelganger useless as a human blood bank / hybrid making machine.  This is a HUGE deal.  After all, Klaus had to wait 500 years after Katherine turned vamp, for another opportunity to become / make hybrids.  Who knows how long he’ll have to wait next time around?

Watching Klaus cry, as he hears Elena’s screams of terror, you could almost imagine that he really does care about her, as more than  just a blood bank.  And maybe he does.  After all, Klaus has romantic history with two girls, who look exactly like Elena.  So, it’s not hard to imagine that some of that tenderness has translated over to this new doppelganger, who’s so very important to him, in so many ways.

At the last possible minute, (once Klaus agrees to get his hybrids out of Mystic Falls, of course) Stefan stops the car.  Oddly enough, despite having gone through the last few minutes with Elena, this guy seems truly confused, as to why she won’t back into the car with him.

Stefan’s speech to Elena is interesting, because it causes you to question just how much of his “No Emotions” thing, is an act, while, at the same time, illustrates just how insensitive and hard-hearted his experiences with Klaus have made him.

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Stefan explains to Elena that she and Damon HAD to believe that he was really going to kill her / and/ or turn her into a vampire,  to convince Klaus of the same thing.  And if all that was an act, maybe the rest of it was too.  After all, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time Stefan pretended not to care about Elena,  in order to protect her.

On the other hand, as Elena tearfully explains, Stefan traumatized her, beyond belief, by forcing her to relive the moment of her parents death.  And the fact that Stefan could make her do this, without giving so much as a thought to the mental and emotional impact it would have on her, shows him to not be the same guy with whom she fell so madly in love, a few years back.

Stefan digs the knife deeper, by telling Elena that defeating Klaus is all he has left, pointedly leaving both Damon and Elena out of that equation.  He also tells Elena that they’ve been “over,” since he left Mystic Falls, and that he doesn’t care what she thinks about him, anymore.  Of course, his facial expressions, when he says this, say otherwise.

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Then, the Poopyhead drives off, leaving Elena in the middle of the road, for Damon to rescue . . . again. That’s right, boys and girls.  Stefan Salvatore is on Team Delena.  And, as awful a dude as he’s been lately, I certainly can’t fault him for that.

Speaking of Delena . . .

The Kiss Raincheck? 🙂

Throughout the hour, we’ve been waiting for Damon and Elena to address their epic liplock.  Now, fittingly enough, they get to do so, in the exact same spot, where the infamous smooch occurred.  Let’s rewatch, shall we?

I must admit, on first watch, I was disappointed that Elena rebuffed Damon’s sweet facial caresses, and soulful love eyes, with her, “You can’t kiss me again.”

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I thought to myself, “Oh come on, Elena!  Stefan practically ROLLED OUT THE RED CARPET for you to give in to your desires with Damon.  Surely, you can’t be feeling guilty about it now!”

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But Damon’s wistful remark, about it being “right .  . . but not right now,” was true in so many ways.

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It also reminded me of that little Dawson’s Creek moment, I shared with you last week.  You know, the one where Pacey told Joey that he couldn’t keep kissing her, because he’d already made his feelings known.  So, if she wanted their relationship to continue, she would have to kiss him?

In essence, I think that is what Damon and Elena are both saying to one another, here.  From Elena’s perspective, it wouldn’t be fair for her to accept another one of Damon’s mind-blowing kisses on THIS night, when her heart is so very raw, from where Stefan stamped on it.  Despite her obviously strong feelings for Damon, if she let him kiss her right now, it would be more about Stefan than it would be about Damon.  And Elena cares enough about Damon to know that he doesn’t deserve that . . .

The next time Damon and Elena kiss, it should be all about THEM, just like it was the first time.

From Damon’s perspective,  he, like a certain Pacey Witter, knows that their next kiss must be Elena-initiated.  And it needs to come at time, when Elena is finally genuinely OK with what happened between her and Stefan.  He loves and respects Elena enough to wait for that moment to come.  He’s also confident enough in her love for him, to know that it WILL come eventually . . .

Dreaming of Delena . . . 

And, if the longing look Elena gave Damon at the end of this scene, and her words to Matt at the end of the episode are any indication, that moment will probably come sooner, rather than later . . .

The Softer Side of Klaus?

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Coming from a Hardcore Delena and Forwood shipper, you might be surprised to know that I found this the most fascinating moment of this episode.  It was both surprising, and, at the same time, telegraphed from the very first scene.  Most intriguing of all was the fact that Klaus’ motives for doing what he did are still not entirely certain.

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On one hand, it certainly seems as though Klaus told Tyler to bite Caroline, knowing, full well that he would initially say no, and then, inadvertently end up doing it, anyway.  At first, most of us fans, probably felt that this was done to show the Scooby Gang that Klaus means business, just as the attempted murder of Jeremy did, last week.  However, on second glance, it seems more likely that Klaus only got Tyler to bite Caroline, so that he could ultimately save her.

The question is, why did he go through all this trouble to do that, for a girl with whom, up to this point, he has had little to no interaction?  Does he truly care about her as much as he seems to, in this clip?

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Is it possible that Klaus feels kinship with Caroline, because both have questioned their existence, in the past?

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Or maybe because she looks so much like his sister (the other Vampire Barbie), or, perhaps, like someone he once loved?  Has he coveted her all along, and merely been using Tyler to get to her?

Or, was all this merely a way, of keeping Tyler in line, by breaking him of the one person, who potentially had the power to keep him from being completely loyal?  Also, having someone, like Caroline, who is so intimately linked to Stefan’s inner circle beholden to him, certainly can’t hurt Klaus’ plans for continued Elena usage, and world domination?  The coy way, in which Klaus caresses the bracelet Tyler gave her for birthday (He ultimately gives her a much nicer, more expensive piece of jewelry, himself.) could be interpreted either way . . .

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But whether you are Team Klaroline, or Team Forwood, you have to admit that these two are pretty darn sexy together . . . And here I thought death bed flirting was only hot , when Delena was doing it.  Shows, how much I know . . .

Bye, Bye Jer Bear!

After Caroline gets her bracelet, things wrap up pretty quickly.  Jeremy gets shipped off to Denver, without much fanfare.  And Bonnie, for all her complaints and hand-wringing, when it actually comes time for him to leave, merely,  hugs him goodbye.

Don’t worry, Jeremy.  You’ll be back.  The ones that don’t die ALWAYS comeback.  (Come to think of it, so do the ones that DO die . . .)

Here Lies Elena Gilbert (a.k.a. Funeral 4) . . .

We follow up this tearful Jer Bear moment, with a surprisingly sweet one between Matt and Elena on that fateful Bridge of DEATH.  Elena notes sadly that her former self might be disappointed with her current self, a girl in love with VAMPIRES (That’s right, I said “vampires” PLURAL . . .

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You know what that means, don’t you, DAMON?

The Matt we USED to know, would have probably agreed with Elena.  But New Matt, was much kinder, giving Old Elena a “funeral,”  so that she might be able to embrace her new crazy life, one which, though he might not fully understand, he does support,  because he  . . . wait for it  . . . wants her to be happy.

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Way to go, Matt!  (I can’t believe I just typed those words . . . I must be going crazier than Stefan . . .)

Speaking of crazy . . .

Here Lies Crazy Nanny Carrie’s Victim Preppy Medical Examiner Guy . . . (a.k.a. Funeral 5)

Question: If the only Medical Examiner in town gets whacked, who gets to determine his Cause of Death? 

While Alaric proceeds to get Day Drunk with Crazy Nanny Meredith, Lizard Forbes and her once-again pal Damon go traipsing in the forest to locate yet another of Mystic Falls growing list of Dead Unimportant Characters.  This time its . . . surprise . . . Preppy Medical Examiner Guy . . . as in, the same one Crazy Nanny Meredith talked about tossing over a bridge, and the same one that Alaric publicly tussled with the night before.  He’s got a stake in his chest, the victim of one of those rare things in Mystic Falls: the HUMAN KILL.

He stole Bonnie’s nose bleed.   BASTARD! 

Do, I suspect a Crazy Nanny Meredith Murder, followed by an Alaric Saltzman frame-up, possibly to avenge the death of an odious weatherman named Logan Fell?  You bet I do!

And that was “Our Town,” in a Nutshell.  Next week, on TVD: Tyler gets chained up and naked again, Crazy Nanny Meredith shows her true colors, and Bonnie appears to be bleeding from her nasal passages again.  Hooray!  You can check out the Canadian and American trailers for this episode, entitled “The Ties that Bind,” here:

Until next time, my fellow Fangbangers!

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

I Dream of Dead People (and DELENA KISSES!) – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “The New Deal”

Welcome back, my fellow Fangbangers!  I missed you!  Heck, I missed this show!  Now, I know how Stefan feels, when he’s going through blood withdrawal . . .

All those sad, lonely, desperate Thursday nights without my TVD  . . .  it’s a wonder I didn’t completely lose my head or have Stefan chew it, or Jeremy chop it off with a meat cleaver . . . .

So, of course, this brings up the inevitable question .  . .  Was “The New Deal” worth the interminable wait . . . the sleepless nights . . . the hours spent watching Delena fanvideos on YouTube, while sitting entirely too close to my computer screen?  Survey says . . .

Well, I’ll take that as a yes! 🙂

But wait . . . before I get started on the recap . . . I think I’m forgetting something.  What could I possibly be forgetting?

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Oh . . . yes . . . THAT.  Well, we will definitely be talking about THAT, soon enough.  But first, let’s get all that “other stuff” out of the way.  Shall we? 😉

“If you unbury it, he will come . . .”

We open the episode with a nice close-up shot on Bonnie, who’s dressed like she’s ready to head out for a night of clubbing.

This, of course, caused me to ponder how far away the nearest dance club is from Mystic Falls.  It’s too bad Vicki’s gone.  She would have known the answer to that question, for sure . . .

But enough about Vicki.  We’re with Bonnie, now.  Mmm-kay?  And Bonnie’s hearing The Whispers.  You know The Whispers, right?  These guys are WAY famous.  If they had an IMDB page, it would probably be longer than Robert De Niro’s.

The Whispers are always popping up in horror movies, and scary TV shows, and telling the protagonist to do BAD THINGS:  “steal that precious object,” “cheat on your wife,” “kill That Guy,” “eat more Chicken McNuggets.”

Unfortunately, here, The Whispers just want Bonnie to go into Lame Emily’s Ugly House of Dead Witchcraft and Mildew.  Bonnie obeys.  (Far be it for her to disobey The Whispers!)  She goes into the basement of the Ugly House.  There are four coffins there.  (Gee golly!  I wonder what it all means?)

It’s a nice day for a vamp funeral  . . . or four . . . 

The Whispers tell Bonnie to open one of the coffins.  (They sure can be bossy . . . those Whispers.)  And when she does .  . . well . . . you’ll never guess who’s in there!  It’s KLAUS!  And he just looks like the happiest Dead Guy ever! 

Oh, hey Bonnie!  Do you know where the bathroom is in this place?  I’ve gotta piss like a racehorse.”

He’s also wearing some seriously tacky Man Bling on his finger and neck.

“Real Men” apparently wear insanely ugly jewelry . . . 

Hey, maybe Bonnie has decided to go clubbing, after all!  She notices that Klaus’ Man Bling would look TOTALLY AWESOME with her shiny gold-plated  halter top, and black leather jacket.  Should she take them?  The Whispers say go for it!  Klaus won’t need jewelry where he’s going.

“My Preciousssss!” 

Bonnie reaches down to take the jewelry.  Bad girl!  Someone grabs her from behind.  Now, she’s really going to get it!  No one has ever stolen Man Bling from the Original Hybrid, and lived to tell the tale.  At home on the couch, TVD fans hold their breaths, awaiting her witchy demise . . .

Or not . . .

You see, Bonnie was just dreaming . .  .  But you probably already knew that, didn’t you?  You sly little fangbanger, you!

“Great, now I have to pee like a racehorse . . .” 

“Hey, Hot Soon-to-be-Headless Hybrid!  Wanna Race?”

While Bonnie’s still in Dreamland, our girl Elena is out kicking ass, and taking names.

Actually, she’s jogging.  And yet, given Elena’s track record with vampires, werewolves, hybrids and other assorted demons, I kind of think learning how to run away is a much better use of her time, don’t you think?  Of course, there’s only one problem: HUMANS CAN’T RUN AWAY FROM SUPERNATURAL CREATURES . . .

“Doh!”

Speaking of the aforementioned OBVIOUS premise, I think it’s kind of funny that, after finishing her 5K race, or, however, long it is that our girl jogs, Elena looks at her stop watch, and gives herself a mental pat on the back for her improved speed.

You can almost hear her saying in her head.  “I finished in 25 minutes.  That’s 30 seconds faster than last time!  That means I should now be able to run a full 30 seconds, before whatever vampire is chasing me that week chews my legs off . . . or whatever . .  .

Elena’s self-congratulatory mood is short-lived however, because someone is jogging behind her.  He’s kind of hot .  . . but not Damon hot,  or Tyler hot . . . just normal run-of-the-mill hot.  He is also wearing the Blue Hoodie of Death, and has Senseless Kill of the Week written all over him.

“Hey . . . is that guy looking at my ass?  He better not be looking at my ass.”

Elena knows that none of these things are good signs.  She starts to panic.  But maybe she’s just being paranoid?   He could just be a Random Running Guy, right?  Elena breathes a sigh of relief.

Then, she remembers what television show she’s on, and starts running like hell . . .

At home, we’re counting the seconds before This Guy goes into warp speed and chews off Elena’s legs.  But he just keeps following her at regular speed . . . no . . . scratch that . . . slow speed  . . . Elena’s kicking his ass.  This guy’s a chump!

And then . . . like that . . . he’s gone.

So, you can imagine Elena’s surprise when he comes back again IN THE COMPLETE OPPOSITE DIRECTION from where we last saw him.  He bumps into Elena on purpose, while mumbling apologies about how he should really watch where he’s going.

“Has anybody ever told you that you have a great ass?” 

At this point, Foster the People’s “Pumped Up Kicks” starts playing in my head, “All the other kids with the pumped up kicks, you better run, run, run, out-run my hybrid . . .”

That’s how the song goes, isn’t it?

Three Cheers for the Klaus-ageddon!

Later, at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, Bonnie and Elena are swapping stories about their CRAZZZY mornings.

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I just keep wondering where Caroline is during all this?  Don’t they realize that Caroline’s boyfriend just became Gay for Klaus, and she’s in an Extremely Vulnerable State, right now?  They couldn’t have asked her to come along for their little breakfast session?  HOW RUUUUUDE!

“Don’t mess with me.   I eat girls like you for breakfast.  No . . . seriously . . . for breakfast this morning, I ate a girl that looked just like you.” 

Speaking of rude, Bonnie, who has NO TACT, WHATSOEVER, decides that this is the perfect time to bring up He Who Shall No Longer Be Named, a.k.a. Stefan.  “He betrayed us.  The Stefan we know is gone,” replies Elena, in a voice that says, “Keep on this subject, and I’ll start asking you about Luka.  Remember him, Bon-Bon?”

By the way, did you all notice how Elena said “us”  . .  . as in “Damon and I are an “us” now.  Get used to it?”  Because, I certainly did. 😉

Speaking of Damon, I think it’s adorable (in a highly dysfunctional way) that my TV Boyfriend is such a raging alcoholic that the bartender basically puts an entire shelf full of liquor in front of him, so that he can mix his own drinks at his leisure, despite the fact that it’s probably about 11 a.m. in TVD-land .  . .

Damon’s kind of bummed though, because Boy Toy Alaric is being a TOTAL kill joy, and not drinking with him.   LAME!  So, Damon tries to entice him . . . first with his baking skills (“I’ve got a screw driver, and a bloody mary.  It’s brunch in a bottle”), and then with his sexual wiles (“Let’s get naked.”)

Come on, Chunky Monkey!  Don’t be such a stick-in-the-mud.  Get naked with your bromantic buddy.  It’s not like we all haven’t seen it before . . .

But alas, Alaric is in no mood for sex games with Damon.  He’s seriously bummed out, because he had to fail Jeremy on a plagiarized history paper.  Damn!  That’s cold.  I thought the whole point of having a history teacher as your pseudo dad is so you can get straight A’s?

Apparently, Alaric is skulking at the bar, in order to perform his first of many interventions on his errant not-so-son (seriously, the Scooby Gang must have spent at least ten minutes during this hour Waiting for Jeremy), as soon as the latter arrives at work.  Not so fast, No Longer Alchy-ric!  Sexy Female Bartender says Jer Bear got canned from The Only Bar / Social Establishment weeks ago.

Ruh-roh!  I guess this means Matt Donovan is going to have to go back to being the Only Waiter at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls again . .  .There goes your social life, Matty Boy!

But don’t worry.  You still have your sister and your mom to hang out with . . . oh . . . wait . . . never mind . . .

“Let’s get drunk and shoot some stuff . . .”

Speaking of Naughty!Jeremy, he’s out in the woods with Tyler, boning drinking cheap beer, and shooting stuff with crossbows.  (How very hillbilly of them!)

“Hey Ty, after this, are you up for some cow-tipping?”

Much like the rest of us, Jeremy wonders out loud, why Tyler is suddenly so interested in hanging out with him, considering that the two of them have had virtually nothing to do with one another, since that time back in Season 2, where Tyler’s dad just died, and Jer Bear and Ty-Ty discovered that they both liked to draw supernatural creatures, drink booze, and screw slutty soon-to-be-dead girls . . .

Tyler responds that “Since you are leaving the show for a while,  the writers thought it might be nice to throw those much-neglected Team Jyler fans a mildly homoerotic bone, while they still could.  “I’m pissed at Caroline, and Bonnie dumped your ass . . . the point is to get drunk and shoot stuff.”

Oh Tyler!  How you slay me with your eloquent wordsmith-ery!  It almost makes me forget that you are about to RUIN THIS POOR BOY’S LIFE, FOREVER . . . almost.

Now, don’t even try looking at me with those puppy dog eyes of yours. Because it’s just not going to work . . . 

Jeremy instructs Tyler to get out of the way, since he’s drunk and is about to “shoot stuff,” just like Tyler said.  But Tyler’s all, “Heyyyy . . .  I’m a hybrid.  Why not shoot me?  Come on!  I know you wanna!”

Is it just me, or is Tyler particularly screencappable today?  It’s almost as if becoming a hybrid has provided him with an entirely new range of facial expressions to try out . . . 

In the first of many Helpful Hybrid Tips Tyler reveals throughout the episode, Vampy Teen Wolf explains that the only way to really kill a hybrid is to chop off it’s head, while it’s unconscious.  Good to know . . .

Jeremy then shoots Tyler with the crossbow, and Tyler catches it.  Bo-ring!  I thought he was going to deflect it with his Massive Muscular Man Chest.  Maybe next time . . .

Elena ponders the Epic Question that has plagued fangirl bloggers for years:  What is Damon Salvatore’s Most Attractive Look?

“Oops . . . I cockblocked again.” 

Back at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, a slightly slurry but still maddenly gorgeous Damon has told Elena about Jeremy’s little Work Mishap, in between his fifth shot of scotch, and his second round of darts.  (Fortunately, the drinks haven’t negatively impacted his aim or, as we will see soon enough, his pick-up lines.)

“If I’m this good at hitting a bullseye with a dart, just imagine how good I might be at locating other sensitive areas.”

Mama Elena, of course, is “very, very disappointed in Jer Bear,” and has been leaving increasingly frantic phone messages on his cell phone, as a result.  Damon, however, seems completely unfazed.  He tries to calm Elena down, by reminding her that Jeremy is a teenager . . . and that being sullen and sometimes irresponsible is simply what teens do.

“Elena, you seem so tense.  I hereby renew the request I made earlier to Alaric, that we all get naked.  I’ll go first.” 

(I always find it interesting how much the rest of the Scooby Gang is constantly noting how young and impressionable Jeremy is, when he’s really only two years younger than Elena.  After all, 16-years old, isn’t exactly a toddler, especially when you consider that Elena, herself, was just a year older than that, when the series started.  The issue of Jeremy’s “youth” will come into play again, later on in the episode.   So, stay tuned . . .)

Funny . . . he doesn’t look like he needs a diaper change . . .

Even when Damon seems carefree and tipsy, he’s always looking out for Elena, and trying to make her feel better about the admittedly horrible situations in which she seems to find herself on a nearly daily basis.  He does this by lifting her spirits with flirty humor, and comforting words, disguised as nonchalant banter.  It’s only when Elena’s truly distraught, that he allows himself to get serious with her, and let his true feelings show, as we will see later in the episode  . . .

Elena is always looking out for Damon too . . . She just does it in a more obvious way.   I like how Elena sees Damon joking around, and looking seemingly drunk and happy, but instinctively knows that he is smarting from his brother’s betrayal, while still missing him terribly, and hiding all this pain behind glibness and false bravado.  “Are you OK?”  She asks him, her brows furrowed, and her eyes filled with obvious concern (among other things) for this beautiful vampire.

Are you OK because I don’t want you to be too drunk to ravish me in your bedroom, after we make out, later tonight?”

But Damon is no fool.  He has no desire to rehash the Stefan Salvatore Saga with the woman he loves.  And he’s much too selfless, at least when it comes to her, to bring her down, by recounting his own personal woes.  Instead, he uses this as an opportunity for flirtation.

Damon confidently strolls into Elena’s personal space, and inquires which of his many looks she finds the most attractive, since she admitted that his Drunken Frat Vampire visage isn’t her “favorite.”  Flustered, Elena quickly counters that she doesn’t necessarily find any of his looks attractive.   However, the way she’s staring at his lips, and pawing at his chest, when she says it, makes me think that, even as she denies it, Elena is mentally perusing a catalogue of her favorite Damon Looks, in order to choose the most erotic one.

“Pick ME, Elena . . . pick ME!”

Now, I’m no mind reader, of course.  But my guess is that THIS is the look she ultimately chose . . .

As with most sexy Delena moments, this one gets cockblocked by Klaus, who seems to be enjoying the Delena Show just as much as the rest of us.  “Don’t mind me,” he says with a smirk, as he approaches the Dartboard of Looooooove . . .

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“Damon, my brother . . . you better hit that, soon.  Because if you don’t, I will . . .”

Klaus hasn’t shown up alone, though.  He’s got his good pal The Soon-to-be-Headless Hybrid with him . . .  Soon-to-be-Headless has a name, apparently.  It’s “Tony.”  I’m just choosing not to remember it.  (I mean, why bother, right?)  Damon’s left nipple has had more screen time than this guy will ever have on TVD . . .  He did have a cute head, though . . .

“Coincidentally, Damon’s left nipple also happens to be named ‘Tony.'”

As always, Klaus has a special request for his favorite couple.  He wants them to help him find his  sister, and Grave Robbing Stefan.  If they do that, he’ll be a good little Mystic Falls neighbor, and leave them alone . . . well . . . at least until he needs Elena’s blood again to make more hybrid minions.  Something tells me he’ll have at least one less of those by the end of the episode . . .

“Damn you, MURDEROUS MEAT CLEAVER!  DAMN YOUUUUUU!” 

As for Elena, she has absolutely no interest in getting in the middle of the b*tch fight between her ex-boyfriend, and his new boyfriend . . .

That sounds to me like a Klaus and Stefan Problem,” Elena says smartly.  (Damon’s right.  She does get feisty, when she’s angry.)

Klaus, however, considers himself way too important to get himself sassed by a mere human.  He moves closer to her, in order to show her who’s boss.  But then THIS happens . . .

That’s right, boys and girls, Damon shoulders his way between Klaus and Elena, and gives Klaus THE STARE.  Watch out Bad Ass Damon . . . your chivalry is showing!

One of my favorite Klaus moments in the episode was when he giggled at Damon’s obvious show of affection for Elena.  I know that part of him sees this as a weakness of Damon’s that he can exploit.  But I strongly suspect that another part of him just sees it as really hot . . .

“This is me broadening the scope,” responds Klaus to Elena’s retort, before exiting stage left.

Well played you adorable, curly-haired, villain, you!

Somebody call an interior decorator (or an exorcist) . . .

Elsewhere, Bonnie return to Lame Emily’s Ugly House of Witchcraft and Mildew .  . . a.k.a. home of The Whispers.  Honestly, you would think that a house inhabited by a bunch of ghostly witches would be more aesthetically pleasing.  The resale value must be next to nada.  HGTV would most definitely not approve.

Behold . . . a house that only a dead person could love. 

Bonnie is only mildly surprised to learn that Stefan (who’s still looking all cold and Ripper-y, despite his recent de-compulsion by Klaus) has been living here.  Quite a step down from La Casa de Rich and Awesome, I’d say!  Not to mention the fact that he used to share a mansion with one person.  Now he’s sharing a two-bedroom colonial with four staked Originals, and a bunch of dead witches, who are perpetually on the rag . . .

“Damon, let me move back in and I promise I will never make fun of your massive bath soap collection again.” 

Stefan wants Bonnie to  use a spell to help keep the coffins hidden from Klaus.  Bonnie is uncertain she has enough nosebleeds left in her to do this . . .

It’s Time for Hybrids 101, with your Trusty Professor, Tyler Hotpants . . .

Back at the Gilbert house, Alaric and Elena are waiting in the kitchen to attempt their second Jer Bear intervention.  But when Jeremy finally arrives home, he’s all “Not without My Tyler.”  Suddenly, Mr. Gay for Klaus, himself, has been invited inside the Gilbert home.  And guess who’s sticking around for dinner?

“Hey, do you mind if I use your neck for a few seconds?  I haven’t fed all day.” 

Clearly speaking for the TVD fandom, Alaric wonders out loud what exactly the difference is between being Klaus’ “sire” and doing everything he says, and being compelled to do whatever Klaus says . . .

“Yes Master, I will absolutely color coordinate with you, the next time we go out to pick up chicks.” 

At first, Tyler is actually pretty convincing in his support of siring.  Tyler explains that he “obeys” Klaus, because he feels indebted to him for saving him from a life of painful monthly transformations, and, of course, mortality.  He also assures the Gilbert clan that he’s still his own man, and can disobey Klaus whenever he feels like it.  It’s kind of like a crack junkie, who says, “I can stop whenever I want. I just choose not to do so.”

But as convincing as Tyler’s initial arguments might have been, he shoots himself in the foot by admitting that he would rip his heart out of his chest, if Klaus asked him nicely to do it . . .

So, let me get this straight, Ty-Ty. You are forever indebted to Klaus for saving your life .  . . so indebted, in fact, that if he asked you to KILL YOURSELF, you would do it?  I don’t know . . .  that sounds a heck of a lot like compulsion to me . . .

Oh, and Tyler?  Elena and Alaric are TOTALLY judging you, now . . .

Damon finds a new drinking buddy . . .

Back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Klaus has just let himself in, completely uninvited.  By now, the whole notion that this house is owned by Elena, and therefore, no one can be invited in, unless she says so, has been completely forgotten in TVD land.  Damon might as well open a Bed-in-Breakfast, considering all the supernatural creatures, who come and go as they please.  They don’t call it the Salvatore Boarding House, for nothing . . .

Klaus has come to drink with Damon, flirt with him shamelessly, b*tch about Stefan, and,  of course, re-issue his offer to stop cock blocking Damon and Elena, and killing off their friends, provided the couple help him locate his pretty little coffins.  Unfortunately for Klaus, Damon would probably respond much better to compulsion than flirtation, as he seems to be the only male character on this show who’s completely immune to the Original Hybrid’s unique charms.

But Klaus can’t compel Damon, because Damon’s been drinking vervain.  So, instead the Big Bad Vamp metaphorically waves his weiner at his younger nemesis, by making a Mysterious Phone Call, in which he instructs SOMEONE to do SOMETHING he told them to do earlier . . .

SPPOOOOOKKKYYY . .  .

Always look both ways before crossing the street (or responding to a hypnotic phone call) . . .

In a scene that is extremely reminiscent of the one from Plan B, in which Katherine compelled Useless Aunt Jenna by phone to stab herself in the chest, after dinner, we see Jeremy in the corner, engaged in a clandestine conversation.  After he hangs up the phone, Jeremy sits back at the kitchen table, as if nothing happened.

But moments later, when Mama Elena and Papa Alaric stupidly turn their back on Jeremy to wash dishes, and make fun of Tyler, and his silly Sire-y Ways, Jer Bear takes off his Ugly Ass Ring of Immortality and walks out into the street, looking like the Hottest Zombie Ever!

He then dazedly stands in the middle of the road and waits for a car to come and run him over into oblivion.  Now, last I checked, Elena lives in a suburban development, where the speed limit in front of her house is probably a whopping 25 mph.  You would think, at that slow speed, someone might notice a teenage boy standing in the middle of the road, like a moron.

Death Car for Cutie 

A-ha!  But Klaus took care of that too!  Because, sure enough Busy Bee, Soon-to-be Headless Hybrid is cruising on the street at about 90 mph.  (Annnnd . . . now we know why Jeremy had to take off his ring.  If a HUMAN drove the car into him, the ring wouldn’t save him.  But because Soon-to-be Headless did it, it’s considered a Supernatural Death.  Well, technically, the compulsion is supernatural too and . . . nevermind.)

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Fortunately, Alaric, who, as we all know, has been holding on to the Ugly Ass Ring of Immortality that Uncle / Father John gave Elena, back in “The Hybrid,” jumps in front of the car just in time to push Jeremy out of the way.  The good news is that he saves Jeremy’s life . . .

The bad news is that Alaric is dead .  . . for now .  . .

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In a rather unnecessary “I told you so,” moment, Elena informs a very shaken-up Jeremy that (1) he’s been compelled by Klaus to kill himself; and (2) his so-called good buddy Tyler has only been hanging out with him, so that he could compel him off vervain.  Way to rub salt in the wound, Elena . . .

Like the compelled suicide attempt itself, this aspect of Klaus’ plan is also similar to Katherine’s from “Plan B.”  If you recall, Katherine posed as Elena,  in order to get Jenna to stop taking vervain . . .

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So, while Klaus gets an “A” for deviousness.  He gets a “C” for originality.  Sorry, Original Hybrid!

Elsewhere, Klaus is busy building his future Mystic Falls home, (which, honestly, I thought would be much bigger), when Tyler arrives MORALLY OUTRAGED by what Klaus almost succeeded in doing to Jeremy, and the part he played in it.  (Seriously, Tyler, you made the dude stop taking vervain, in the service of someone who HATES his family.  What exactly did you think was going to happen?)

Klaus calmly tells Tyler, more or less, to man-up.  (hybrid-up?)  “You need to get over your conscience.  Human life is a means to an end,” Papa Bear explains patronizingly to Baby Bear.

I love how Klaus refers to a “conscience” as something you can simply “get over,” like a head cold, or a bad stomach flu . . .

Meanwhile, back at the Gilbert house, Damon has, once again, come to Elena’s aid.  “How’s [Alaric]?”  He asks, with obvious concern for his bromantic drinking buddy.

“He’s still dead,” replies Elena conversationally.

If you recall, the first few times Alaric died, wearing his ring, he came back to life, within mere minutes.  But, back in “Disturbing Behavior,” when Damon killed him, it seemed to take at least an hour.  This time, Alaric is dead for multiple hours, and experiences additional complications that I will address in just a bit.  No word yet, on why Alaric’s ring seems to be offering it’s wearing increasingly diminishing returns.  Perhaps, even when it comes to Magical Rings, there’s a limit to how many “Get Out of Death Free” cards, a person is entitled to use . . .

 ‘This is depressing . . . I need another drink.”

Leaving Alaric to . . . um . . .  rest in peace, Damon and Elena discuss their respective plans to finally rid Klaus from their lives for good.  Elena wants to return Rebekah to Klaus, so that he can undagger her.  But Damon won’t hear of it.  He hates the idea of Rebekah seeking vengeance against Elena, considering that Elena is the one who staked her, in the first place.  As for Damon’s plan, he wants to give Klaus back his precious coffins, if only he knew where they were . .  .

Remembering Bonnie’s dream, Elena thinks she knows exactly where to look, and calls Bonnie to confirm . . .

But before Elena and Damon can head off on their Next Big Kill Klaus Plan, Little Bro Jer has some haunting parting words for them both: “None of us are going to make it out of here alive,” he warns.

(By the end of the episode, of course, we know that for certain, that Jeremy’s words aren’t entirely true, considering that ONE person gets out of Mystic Falls, very much alive.  But could this possibly be a foreshadowing of Elena eventually being turned into a vampire?  Stay tuned .  . .)

Over the River and Through the Woods . . .

So, remember last season, when Damon tried to enter Lame Emily’s Ugly House of Witchcraft and Mildew, for the first time?

Well, apparently, female witches are quite good at holding grudges, because they are still up to their same shenanigans, when Damon tries to enter the house, this time.  My only question is, why are they still so Pro Stefan, especially considering what a major douche he’s become, of late . . .

At first, Damon waits outside, while Elena tries to talk some sense into Stefan.  “Bonnie sucks at keeping secrets,” Stefan pouts, when Elena admits to knowing exactly why Stefan is there and what he’s doing.

I’ll admit, I’m a bit shocked when Elena tells Stefan that Klaus will KILL Jeremy, if he doesn’t put an end to this vendetta, and Stefan barely bats an eyelash.  “That’s not my problem,” he says callously.

WOW!  Even Compelled Zombie Ripper Stefan wasn’t this cold!  Considering that Stefan claims to be doing all this to save his own brother, you would think he would be more sympathetic to Elena’s desire to do the exact same thing.  I’m glad when she finally slaps him.  He’s had that one coming to him for quite awhile, now . . .

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Having heard everything that went on inside Ugly House, Damon grabs hold of Elena’s hand to comfort her over what she’s just endured.  “You deal with your brother, and I’ll deal with mine,” Damon assures Elena, sweetly, offering her that sad half smile, he seems to reserve exclusively for her . . .

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“Cutthroat and Devious.”

Fighting the torturous sunburn he’s getting, Damon rushes into the house to talk to Stefan . . . and, of course, by “talk” I mean “beat up.”  I kind of feel like Damon and Stefan fight with one another the way other brothers hug, or give eachother Manly Back Pats.  And when they stake one another, it’s like their own super secret handshake . . .

During the fighting, grunting, staking, and de-staking, Damon cleverly manages to throw his brother out of the Ugly Witch House, before he starts to look like a cast member on the Jersey Shore.  But before they can discuss anything else, Damon has one question he’s been dying to ask his brother since before the hiatus, namely: “Why didn’t you just let Mikael kill Klaus, Ya MORON?”

“I did it to save YOU,” Stefan admits in a way that is surprisingly sheepish, and heartfelt, especially considering the icy way he dealt with Elena earlier.

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Elena is absolutely right.  Damon truly is the key to Stefan’s humanity.  Right now, he’s the only one to whom the latter is willing to show that he still has it.  Honestly, the whole fight scene was kind of hilarious (yet oddly sexy), as was Damon’s occasional bratty remarks,  like “No wayyyyyy,” and “STOP SAVING ME!”

Once they are done trying to temporarily kill one another, Damon and Stefan eventually come to a truce.  “In order to defeat Klaus, you need to be cutthroat and devious,” Damon explains to his little brother.  “I am so much better at that than you.”

Stefan does not necessarily disagree.  The brothers ultimately agree that they  will work together (along with Bonnie) to keep the coffins from Klaus, provided Elena has no part in their plan.

*insert girly growling noises here* 

It’s nice to know that Stefan still has some concern for Elena’s well being.  And it’s interesting to see how, now, the shoe is on the other foot.  Back in “Rose,” Damon compelled Elena to forget his love declaration for her, because he thought that Stefan was “better for her.”

Now, it’s Stefan who’s keeping his distance from Elena, and continuously pushing her away, at least partly, because he knows that Damon will love and protect her, no matter what . . .

As for the coffins, they’ve been hiding in the Ugly Witch House the entire time, only becoming visible when the witches want them to be seen.  (Well, at least there’s ONE person those vengeful witches seem to hate more than Damon .  . . Klaus).  Toward the end of the episode, Bonnie notes that if The Whispers are right, one, in particular, will be the key to Klaus’ undoing.  It’s the fourth coffin, the only one that DOESN’T contain an Original Family Member within it.  Could this coffin be the one that houses the First Petrova?

Everything Comes to a Head . . . Literally

They say that the definition of “stupidity” is doing the same thing multiple times, and continuing to expect different results.  That was exactly what I thought about, when I saw Jeremy once again trying to shoot Tyler with a crossbow, and Tyler once again, catching it.  I don’t know.  Perhaps, this was just Jeremy’s unique way of “breaking up” with Tyler.  No more sex in the champagne room for these two!

Nonetheless, Tyler still obviously has enough of a soul, and independent spirit to want Jeremy stay alive.  And for that reason, Tyler warned him that he should stay in his house, because Klaus wasn’t finished with him yet . . .

Back at the Gilbert House, Alaric is FINALLY coming back to life .  .  . That’s the “good news.”  The bad news is that he’s coughing up blood, and somehow still near death’s door.  Apparently, while the Ugly Ass Ring of Immortality has kept his heart beating, it hasn’t bothered to cure his injuries, thereby making it the Lazy Ass Ring of Immortality.

At this rate, a friggin crossbow would be more effective at protecting Alaric than his ring . . . 

A frantic Elena calls the ambulence.  But by the time they arrive, someone else is there compelling them to leave.   Surprise!  It’s Soon-to-be-Headless Hybrid!  Seriously, Klaus?  Again?  This is like on that show Punk’d, when all the pranks starred that same Dax guy for about five seasons, and Ashton Kutcher wondered why suddenly none of the celebrities were being fooled anymore.  If Klaus supposedly has all these fabulous sired hybrids, why the heck does he keep using this same one?

“Howdy . . .” 

Anywhoo . . . Soon-to-be-Headless tells Elena that, now that the ambulence is gone, Alaric’s only shot at survival is to invite the hybrid inside, and let Alaric drink his blood.  I guess this would make Alaric a plain-old vampire, since only Klaus, himself, could make hybrids, and Alaric was never a werewolf.  Elena seems torn, having been in a not-entirely-different situation to Alaric herself,  not long ago.

Fortunately, however, she doesn’t have to make that choice for Alaric, because Soon-To-Be-Headless was just crossbowed.  That’s right. Jeremy is BACK, baby!  But wait, he hasn’t finished with the hybrid yet.  Striding into the house, like it’s no big THANG, Jeremy reemerges on the porch with a meat cleaver and hacks off Now-Actually-Headless’s skull, as easily as if he’s cutting through butter.

Now, admittedly, this is not the most realistic rendition of a decapitation.  In real life, Jeremy would probably have to spend an hour methodically chipping at this guy’s neck, to get through the skin alone.  But that’s OK.  Because, while this may have been the fakest Head Chop EVER, it was also the sexiest.  I mean, can you imagine getting turned on by decapitation?  I can . . . now!  Heck, even the blood splatters on Jeremy’s face, upon finishing the job are hot!

They look kind of like freckles . . .

Elena doesn’t necessarily think so, though.  She’s choking back tears . . . not necessarily because she gives two sh*ts about Now-Actually-Headless Hybrid.  Nope, she’s merely mourning the loss of Jeremy’s innocence.  Oh honey, you forget that Jeremy once dated Vicki Donovan.  I hate to break it to you, Big Gilbert, but that Innocence Ship sailed away a LOOOOONG time ago . . .

Paging, Dr. Fell . . .

At the hospital, Alaric’s doctor is Crazy Nanny Carrie from One Tree Hill.  No, I’m sorry, I mean, Psychotic B*tch Sister Melissa from Pretty Little Liars.  OMG, how am I supposed to trust this woman, when every single solitary role she takes, her character ends up being a totally evil wackadoo.  (She’s also Paul Wesley’s real-life wife.  Go figure!)

Anywhoo, Doctor Not-Crazy-Nanny-Carrie and Not-Psychotic-B*tch-Sister-Melissa is super flirty with Alaric.  She’s also super intrigued by his miraculous healing abilities and wants to study him in a lab.  (Not the worst pickup line I’ve ever heard . . . but I’ve certainly heard better.)

Dr. Fell’s “game” improves a bit, when she asks Alaric if he has a guardian angel, or he “sold his soul to the devil.”  Alaric’s clever reply, “a little bit of both,” actually describes Damon Salvatore to a tee, don’t you think?

But more important than her flirting abilities, perhaps, is the “good” doctor’s name.  Dr. Fell wants Alaric to call her by her first name: Meredith.  Intrepid TVD book fans will recall that “Meredith” was Book Elena’s smart, sardonic, dark-haired, and olive-complexioned “other best friend,” aside from Bonnie.  They will also recall that “Meredith” dated the vampire hunter / history teacher, Alaric Saltzman throughout most of the series.

So, is this the TVD writers way of FINALLY introducing this character — who by the way, was a real fan favorite — into the television series?  Well, that remains to be seen.  Torrey Devitto definitely “looks” the way Meredith was described in the books (though she’s about ten years older).  But I just don’t trust her . . . and if she’s a character I can’t trust, she’s NOT Book Meredith.  Sorry Crazy Nanny Carrie . . .

A “fair trade” . . .

In a scene and plotline that was surprisingly reminiscent of Elena’s decision to go against both Salvatore’s wishes, and un-dagger Elijah, so that he could help her kill Klaus, Elena decides to invite Klaus into her home . . .

. . .  and offer him the not-particularly-dead Staked Rebekah, in exchange for a promise of Jeremy’s continued safety.  Before Klaus can accept the bargain, Elena lets him know two important pieces of information: (1) Elena, as we know was the one who staked Rebekah.  So, if Klaus still needs Elena, for her blood, or just for leverage, Klaus will have to keep Rebekah from killing the Petrova Doppelganger.  (2) Rebekah knows that Klaus killed their mother.

Klaus ultimately accepts the terms of Elena’s deal, but still wants Elena to help him find Stefan.  Elena hasn’t turned her back on her former beau quite enough yet to reveal his whereabouts to Klaus.  She does let the Original Hybrid, however, that there is no longer any love lost between the pair.  “Stefan doesn’t care about me, anymore,” she explains resolutely.  “You turned him into a monster, and now he’s your problem.”

Recognizing that Stefan is no longer a sufficient bargaining chip to auction in exchange for Elena’s loyalty,  and that Jeremy is now off the table, Klaus reminds Elena that he can still kill other people she loves, like Caroline, Bonnie, or . . . . wait for it . . . DAMON!

NOOOOOOO!

Needless to say, Klaus threat was  a highly effective one . . .

Someone’s in the kitchen with Elena . . .

Speaking of Damon, back at the Gilbert house, he chivalrously agrees to dispose of Now-Actually-Headless Hybrid’s body, while Elena frantically scrubs at her bloody hands.  (Why are you’re hands so bloody, Elena?  And don’t say it’s from “cleaning the porch,” because I don’t buy it.  Did you soak them in the Poor Guy’s disembodied skull?)

Back in “Homecoming” Elena took a very angry, betrayed, drunk, and frightened, Damon’s face in both of her hands, and told him him that they would survive whatever Klaus through their way . . . together.  Now, in “The New Deal,” Damon is returning the favor.  His “are you all right?”  absolutely echoes Elena’s own words to him, earlier in the episode.

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 And the way Damon pulls Elena’s shaking body and tear-stricken face toward his own and promises her that he will fix things for her, and her increasingly dysfunctional family says so much about what these two individuals mean to one another, and the way each lifts the other up, when they are feeling particularly weak and vulnerable . . .

(Sidenote: I noticed that, while Elena immediately admitted to giving up Rebekah to Klaus, Damon, though clearly torn about it, kept his alliance with Stefan from Elena.  Presumably, Elena still thinks Damon agrees with her about giving up the coffin.  I just hope this little white lie doesn’t come back to bite Damon in the butt later, especially considering the AMAZING place these two finally have reached in their relationship . . .)

For your own good . . .

How interesting that both Klaus and Elena “give up” their younger siblings, purportedly for their own good, and to “keep them safe,” but possibly for selfish reasons as well.  Klaus shows some surprisingly vulnerability when he de-stakes Rebekah in the house he has built in order to reunite with his family.  He watches her hand twitch back to life with excitement and anticipation.

But then he remembers Elena’s words.  I think Klaus re-stakes Rebekah, because he doesn’t want to face the way she will look at him, now that she knows he has killed their mother.  He fears her disappointment . . . her accusations . .  . and her judgments.  So, while, I’m sure a part of him keeps Rebekah daggered to “protect” her from those who would use her against him, a larger part of him does it to protect himself . . .

Back at the Gilbert house, Damon finds Jeremy in Elena’s bedroom and tells him that his sister thinks it’s time the two of them had another one of their talks.  He’s surprisingly paternal about it, just as he was the first time Damon compelled Jeremy, in order to make him forget the circumstances surrounding Vicki’s death.  Damon’s compulsion here has the same effect, more or less.  It takes away Jeremy’s pain, and leads him to Denver for a new life . . . one that is free from supernatural threats . . . one that will most likely not require him to chop off some hybrid’s head to save his family.

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But Damon also takes away Jeremy’s natural concern for the well-being of his sister, and that troubled me a bit.  Aside from my not wanting to see the character go, I’m just not sure how long compulsion like that could stick.  How many times will Jeremy brush off inquiries about his family back home, before he starts to wonder himself, whether something is missing from his life?  Perhaps, this was done on purpose to allow Steven R. McQueen to return to the show at a later date . . .

I hope so, because I feel like this story is not over.  By having Damon compel Jeremy, she kept him safe, but she also removed his free will, and treated him like a child.  She did the exact same thing she criticized Damon for doing to her, when he force fed her his own blood, back in “The Last Day.”  Of course, she did it out of love . . . but I think she also did it to help herself feel a sense of control in the crazy world in which she was living, and to free herself from guilt . .  .

And it’s this familial “guilt” that plays a big role in this episode’s epic finale . . .

These lips were made for Ambush Kissing . . .

Back at the end of Season 1, there was a kiss that took place on the Gilbert Porch.  It preceded a speech, in which Damon thanked a person he “thought” was Elena, for making him into a better person, and for seeing him as someone who was worth saving.  And though that person actually ended up being “Katherine,” staunch Delena fans adopted the scene was one of their own, hoping upon hope that it would be revisited, one day . . . and that, this time, it would be REAL . . .

Two years later, we got our wish, but with some crucial differences.  This time, it’s Elena who’s thanking Damon for being there for her . . . for seeing her as someone who is worth saving . . . for making her feel like a better person, even when she’s making morally ambiguous decisions.

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Elena, who wasn’t actually on the porch that last time, doesn’t see the parallel between this scene, and the last one.  But Damon does.  And it’s Elena’s thankfulness that Damon is alive, that reminds him of how Elena was the person who kept him alive on Founder’s Day, but Stefan kept him alive during “Homecoming,”  This makes Damon feel guilty enough to admit to Elena that Stefan hasn’t totally turned off his emotions, and that his continued vitality is at least somewhat responsible for the danger in which all of them are currently enmeshed.

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This expression of guilt causes Elena to wonder, once again, whether Stefan is really lost forever.  However, it causes Damon to feel guilt about something else, entirely, his love for Elena.  But this time, Damon isn’t going to relive the unrequited heartache of “Rose.”  He’s not going to be “selfless” by compelling Elena to forget his kiss . . . his love for her.  Rather, he’s going to own up to the strong feelings he’s felt for this woman for two years now . . . feelings he’s finally starting to see, might be returned.

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Damon’s kiss in “Founder’s Day,” was sweet and tentative.  His kiss here is intense, decisive, passionate, and filled with two years worth of pent-up emotion.  More importantly, Elena kisses him back!   Watch as she grabs the hand he has cupped on her cheek, in order to pull Damon closer, and prolong this beautiful and delicious moment between them . . .

Now, while I would have loved for Elena to have been the one to pull Damon into a kiss, the first time he walked off that porch, in some ways, this was more meaningful, given Damon’s history of always giving up Elena for the greater good.  His manning up to his love for her, will hopefully give her the swift kick in the ass she needs to make the next move.

The song that’s playing during this scene is called “Holding on and Letting Go,” by Ross Cooperman.  While Damon and Elena are kissing the lyrics talk about one door swinging closed, and another door swinging open.  Now, of course, this could refer to any number of things that happened throughout the episode: Alaric’s growing mortality, Tyler’s realization of Klaus’ hold on him, Klaus’ re-staking of Rebekah, Jeremy’s departure, Damon’s and Stefan’s truce . . . but personally, I’m hoping it refers to the state of Elena’s heart . .  .

On that note, check out the extended promo for next week’s episode entitled “Our Town” . . .  (bad segway, I know) . . .

As for our friends in Canada, I’m actually a bit less impressed with the Canadian promo, this time around.   Aside from that “car scene,” which the CW had already released, there isn’t much here, that we didn’t see in the promo above.  Nevertheless, here you go . . .

Now, it’s your turn.  Let me know what you thought about Jeremy’s departure, the Delena kiss, Tyler’s betrayal, Crazy Nanny Carrie’s arrival, Ripper Stefan 8.0, and anything else related to this fabulous show that I feel so lucky to have gracing my television screen, each week.  Until next time, Fangbangers . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

Were you prepared for THIS? – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Homecoming”

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It looks like someone just found out Charlie’s Angels was canceled . . .

Howdy, Fangbangers!  Well, it looks like we have bit, staked, compelled, danced, and de-hearted our way through another mid-season finale of The Vampire Diaries.  And man, was this episode a doozy!  For me, “Homecoming” struck me very much as the unofficial sequel / bookend to one of my favorite TVD episodes, of all time.  Of course, I’m referring to the epic “Masquerade.”

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Think about it.  Both episodes featured a major black tie optional event at the Lockwood Mansion.  Both episodes featured a plan, concocted by the Scooby Gang to take down a significant enemy, in which most of the main characters played a significant role.

Both episodes contained a number of shocking twists, turns, and fake outs, as the show wound its way toward its epic conclusion.  And both episodes offered up some doppelganger hijinks, which resulted in Elena being absent for a key portion of the action.

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Of course, there was one very important difference between “Masquerade” and “Homecoming.”  In “Masquerade,” the Scooby Gang’s ultimate goal was to KILL Katherine (or at least entomb her for a few million years).  But in “Homecoming,” Katherine ended up being, arguably the most important secret weapon the Scooby Gang had against their REAL enemy . . . Klaus.

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So, slip into your favorite dress or suit, and choke back a few bags of blood.  Because it’s time to attend “Homecoming” . . .

(Andre, as always . . . the screencaps were amazing!  Thank you!)

The Body

White Oak Daggers .  . . all the BEST Originals are wearing them.”

We begin this episode, with Stefan calling his boyfriend, Klaus, from La Casa de Rich and Awesome, to inform him that his Daddy’s dead, and to ask him what he wants to do with the body.

“I’ve been missing our nightly phone sex chats, Klaus.  You haven’t forsaken me for that Teeny Bopper Wolf, Tyler, have you?

The fact that this episode both begins and ends with a phone call involving the care and maintenance of Original corpses is just one of the many brilliant touches to this multi-faceted little gem of an episode.   Another interesting irony of this scene?  Stefan’s words actually end up being TRUE, by the episode’s end.

But, since we are just at the beginning, let’s try not to get too much ahead of ourselves here . . .

As it turns out, Stefan’s phone call to Klaus is actually the SECOND STEP, in the longest, most drawn out, Scooby Gang plan to murder its Big Bad . . . EVER.    We flash back a bit, at this point, to just about twenty or so minutes earlier, during which our stalwart crew engages in one of its trademark Pow Wows of Sexiness and Plot Explanation.  (We haven’t had one of THESE in a while.)

During this exchange, we learn that, Stefan is the only person who could successfully lure Klaus back to Mystic Falls, with the promise of Mikael’s death.  However, since Stefan has been compelled to obey, and be more or less honest with the Original Hybrid, Mikael must ACTUALLY be dead, in order for him to make this phone call.

So, Mikael graciously allows Elena to stake him, since, as a human, she is the only one who can do so with White Oak Ash Temporary Murder Weapon, without meeting her maker, herself.  Elena quickly does the deed, without much fuss.

“Oooh, yeah.  A little to the left.  That feels good.”

Then, Stefan makes his phone call, during which a very depressed, and clearly conflicted Rebekah, confirms the existence of her father’s corpse to Klaus.

“Well, of course it’s him!  How many thousand year-old vampires named Mikael do YOU know?”

Did I mention that Mikael’s “Big Bad Klaus Killing Weapon,” is nothing but another, slightly more phallic stylish, looking dagger?  Yeah . . . that disappointed me too.  I was hoping for some gruesome, gory, step-by-step dismemberment process, or something equally sexy or complex.  Not a an ornately hand-crafted wooden weiner  .  . .  So, much for Originals being “hard to kill.”

“Did someone say, ‘hard?’ 😉

Oh, and the worst part?  ANYONE (including your grandma), can hold and wield this dagger.  So, it doesn’t even possess any cool, non-Original vampire-murdering properties, like its slightly smaller predecessor.  LAME!

Just a small quibble . . .  I’ll return to Positivity Town, now.  Thank you, very much . . .

The Bonding

In a show of false bravado, Rebekah paints her toenails, as she waits for her Bad Dad to wake up, so that he can head off to kill her Big Bad Bro.

“You know, I haven’t had a good pedicure, since 1921.  THANKS Klaus!”

You know, I have to say, out of all the characters on the show, Rebekah wins the dubious award this week, for Character Whose Life Sucks the Most.  I mean, imagine helping your dad — who you’ve been taught to hate, your entire life — to kill your brother, because that brother killed your mother, and, to some extent, your ENTIRE FAMILY.  I mean, it’s not exactly the type of situation they make Hallmark cards for . . .

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What the f*&k are Hallmark cards?”

“Nothing you say matters to me,” says Rebekah, as her father returns to the living, though both vampires in the room, know this to be a lie.

No matter how awful our family members might be (and Rebekah’s are clearly the most awful of all), we are always subconsciously seeking their approval . . .

Mikael then asks where his precious peni$ dagger is hiding.  And Rebekah responds that Elena has it, the unspoken implication of that statement being, “I want to make sure you don’t try to impregnate kill me with it, you A$$HAT!”

“Been there, done that, bought the t-shirt.”

Mikael, ever the warm and loving soul he is, promises Rebekah that he wouldn’t use that dagger to kill Rebekah . . . only her mother-killing brother.  “And [Klaus] will die for what he did,” explains Rebekah calmly. “But you did this to us, when you turned us into vampires.  YOU destroyed our family, not him.”

So, THERE!”

These were pretty strong words coming from Rebekah . . .  words that make me wonder how many thousands of years she must have spent in therapy to come to this very conclusion. 🙂  And while, Rebekah’s accusations clearly impact her father, I can’t help but wonder whether Rebekah too easily brushes aside her brother’s evil acts, as the mere result of his being an Original .  . .

Because yes, we are ALL a product of our families.  And Mikael’s behavior toward Klaus definitely scarred him for life, as we saw in last week’s “Ordinary People.”  Of course, Klaus would NOT have had all this power, to do all these bad things, had it not been for the spell that turned him into a vampire in the first place.  On the other hand, there are plenty of vampires who have bad dads, but don’t behave like Klaus . . . Caroline, being the most notable one.

Take THAT, fellow Bad Dad Vamps!”

But to some extent, Klaus’ own siblings, Rebekah and Elijah prove this point as well.  Because while both are generally pretty scary indiviuals, neither of them is Klaus . . .

“Yeah, I know.  I’m bad ass.”

This super intriguing scene, is followed by a super dull one, during which Bonnie mopes a bit about the fact that her ex-boyfriend would rather bang dead chicks than her.

“I know it might be fun to take time out of your busy Klaus-killing, Damon flirting schedule to talk about our feeeeelings.”

However, lest you think this TVD moment was nothing more than a two-minute waste of your precious pre-hiatus air time, I’d like to propose that this scene was actually MILDLY important, in that it hinted at the episode’s theme.

When Elena encourages Bonnie to open up and discuss her feelings about her Tragic Break-up with Jer Bear, Bonnie refuses, due to the fact that Elena is Jeremy’s brother, and will love him unconditionally, no matter what.

“Awww . . .”

“So, what,” you might be thinking.  “Jeremy wasn’t even IN this episode!  What do his Ghost F*&ker tendencies have to do with “Homecoming.”  Ahhh . . . true.  But the key word in Bonnie’s statement isn’t “Jeremy,” it’s “brother.”

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Do you see where I’m going with this?  Meanwhile, back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome . . .

The Contingency Plan

Honestly, this picture has nothing to do with this section of the recap at all.  Consider this my way of expressing my own personal dissatisfaction at the lack of Damon shirtlessness, of late . . .

Damon and Elena are having sex making out making wolfsbane grenades, while Elena cautions Damon about the fact that more than half of the members of their Kill Klaus Team are untrustworthy vampire douchebags.  Fortunately, Damon is well aware of this fact, which is why he has a Super Top Secret Kill Klaus Contingency Plan.  HOORAY!

But before Damon can reveal, anymore, Ripper Stefan stops by to borrow a tie.  Apparently,  all Stefan’s regular ties are lame.  I love how becoming a Ripper has seemed to awaken Stefan’s latent fashion sense gene.  (Have you notice, his hair has improved, since he went “bad?”)  Now, since Stefan believes himself to be Season , Damon, he also apparently, wants to raid Damon’s Season 1 wardrobe  . . .

“Might you be so kind as to lend me a pair of boxer briefs?”

And yet, I’ve actually never seen Damon OR Stefan wear any sort of tie that wasn’t black . . . So much for pushing the fashion envelope!  Now, Klaus on the other hand, there’s a guy, who probably has some crazy ass ties . . .

“I once wore this tie, made entirely out of champagne glasses.”

Anywhoo, Elena seems to be in a pretty sassy, Katherine-esque mood, of late (an aspect of this episode, which will prove to come in very handy later).  So, she helpfully suggests that Stefan stay home from the dance, since he seems incapable of properly dressing his new evil self.

“I’m sorry, Stefan.  Damon no longer has any ties.  We’ve ruined all of them during our hard core screwing, fighting and biting sessions . . .”

Stefan jabs right back at his ex-girlfriend, reminding her that he has been compelled to protect her . . . and that her track record, both for BIG PLANS, and school dances . . . well . . . it pretty much sucks.

(Technically, this is true.  All three dances that Elena attended with Stefan, ended with her almost getting killed.  There was, however, one dance that ended decidedly better . . .)

In fact, Stefan “worries,” that without his company, Elena might find herself murdered by the homecoming queen.  Touche, Stefan .  . . touche!

“What’s that supposed to mean?  You think I’m not hot enough to win homecoming queen?”

Quick to stick up for his soon-to-be girlfriend, Damon helpfully reminds Stefan that, since he’s Klaus’ bitch, HE’S the one more likely to inadvertently screw up the Gang’s plans, with his compulsive (and compelled) honesty, when it comes to responding to Klaus’ questions and requests.

But Stefan retorts that only ONE person in the room has illustrated a habit for letting HER humanity get in the way of their plans . . .

“Ooh, what do we have here . . . Stefan Salvatore’s number? DELETE!”

Ahh . . . humanity.  If brotherhood is the theme of this episode, “humanity” is it’s buzzword, both in it’s literal, and its more metaphoric sense . . .

All Hail Evil Blood Sluts

Over at the school, two NON humans, Caroline and Tyler are glittering-up the gym together.  (Unfortunately, this is not a euphemism for sex.)

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Tyler suggests they ditch the glitter and go eat some people who genuinely enjoy being chewed on by vampires.   (Hmmm . . . hickeys from Damon and Tyler?  YES PLEASE!)

“Or I could just spray glitter all over your boobs.  Take your pick.”

Prissy Caroline is APPALLED by ths concept — overtly sexual as it may be — and chastizes Tyler for hanging out with, and being adversely influenced by, as Caroline calls her, That Evil Blood Slut Rebekah.

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“OH HELL TO THE NO!”

Tyler promptly moves himself even further into the dog house, by telling Caroline how That Evil Blood Slut Rebekah is going to the Homecoming Dance with Matt, as per his suggestion.  Caroline, apparently, thinks Matt is just too sweet and innocent to dance with an Evil Blood Slut.  (Really, Caroline?  Because he wasn’t so “sweet and innocent,” when he conspired with your mother to KILL YOU!)

Don’t think we forgot!

“Is this some weird family component of the sire thing?”  Caroline asks, frustratedly.

And I’ve gotta say, I simply adored Tyler’s response.  “I’ve got glitter all over my hands .  . . If I’m sired to anyone, it’s you.”

I guess that’s what they call it, nowadays . . . siring. 😉

(So, basically, becoming a Ripper has made Stefan a better dresser.  And becoming Klaus’ b*tch has made Tyler funnier.  In conclusion, EVIL IS AWESOME!)

Speaking of That Evil Blood Slut / Barbie Klaus, she’s over at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, wearing her token red dress, we got a peak at last week . . . a dress that looks oddly similar to the one Caroline ends up wearing . .  . both to this dance, and to the “Masquerade.”

“I look WAY better in this than that chick I ate, who was wearing it last.”

Elena approaches Rebekah from behind, and attempts to bond with the super depressed Lady Vamp.  When Rebekah admits that this is her first Homecoming Dance, since she and Klaus have always been too busy running from Mikael to do anything resembling a real high school experience, Elena gallantly thanks her for helping the Scooby Gang KILL KLAUS.

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Then Elena offers Rebekah her old Original Witch necklace,  as a token of her affection and friendship, before LITERALLY STABBING HER IN THE BACK with that trusty white oak ash dagger!

“I’m sorry, I can’t leave anything to chance either,” says Elena, as Rebekah falls to the floor . . . just slightly more undead than usual.

“Does this stake in my back make my ass look big?”

OUCH!  Even Damon thought that was cold, as he wrapped the dead chick up in a blanket or rug, or something.  Talk about Katherine-esque!

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Nevertheless, Stefan’s words have caused Elena to worry about whether her humanity WILL screw up the Kill Klaus plan.  Knowing Elena’s track record of SH*TTY PLANS gone awry, Damon can’t actually disagree with her.  But he can promise her that, she won’t screw THIS plan up, since, from this point on she will no longer have any part in it.

“Do you trust me?” Damon asks.

“Yes,” Elena replies, unequivocally . . . which, if you know these two at all, you know is a pretty HUGE step in the progression of their relationship, both as friends and, MUCH MORE IMPORTANTLY, for me, anyway, as lovers .  . .

“Then, you have nothing to worry about,” Damon replies.

Eeeek, did you REALLY have to say that, Damon?  Now, you’ve pretty much ensured that both you AND Elena will have something very significant to worry about, by the episode’s end  . . .

The Flood

One thing ALL the seniors at Mystic Falls High are going to have to worry about, is natural disasters.  After a flood magically appears probably because Klaus made it so at the school, the students find themselves without a suitable locale for their dance that night.  But, no biggies, Tyler can hold it at his house. . . .  You know, because that’s what filthy rich people DO, when the going gets tough .  . . they invite an entire student body into their living room.

That said, “Tyler’s” generous gesture reminded me a little bit of Logan Echoll’s “Alterna-Prom” bid, on Veronica Mars.

If you watched the show, you know exactly to what I’m referring.  If not, you can  just skip this comment, entirely . . .

Meanwhile, back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Matt too finds himself in need of a contingency plan . .  . considering that his “Original” Date, is a bit “DEAD” at the moment.  (Man!  That sucks, Rebekah.  Here’s hoping you stick around long enough to go to NEXT year’s Homecoming . . . though, I doubt it.)  Have no fear, Matt.  “ELENA” can be your date.

“Aww man!  Now I have to take ANOTHER hot girl to the dance.  My life sucks!  I so wish I was back at the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls.”

Initially, I was annoyed by this development, since I REALLY wanted Elena and Damon to go to the dance as dates.  And yet, considering that “ELENA” was actually Ka . . . well, more on this later . . .

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The Wake

“I’m picturing all of you naked right now.  It helps that I’m not wearing any pants.”

Wow, “Tyler” throws a rockin, Homecoming Dance. .  .  complete with My Morning Jacket, providing the music for the evening, and more people in attendance than could possibly attend Mystic Falls High, EVER . . . especially considering the death rate at that school.  This, of course, makes Caroline FURIOUS.  She can’t date a guy who’s a better party planner than she is?  What would SHE contribute to the relationship?

“Aside from the obvious, of course.”

Of course, as Tyler admits, he didn’t actually plan this party .  . .  Klaus did.  And it’s not a Homecoming Dance, it’s more like a WAKE .  . . for Mikael . . . an event for which Klaus has been preparing for a thousand years.   (Hmm . . . interesting . . . is this your clever way of telling us that the members of the band, My Morning Jacket, are vampires? ;))

Odd though it was, Klaus’ wake for Mikael sure beat the one Matt through for Vicki, which more or less consisted of this . . .

Meanwhile, “Elena” and Matt arrive at the dance.  And Matt wonders out loud whether their attending together is “weird.”  “Elena” then tells Matt to “act normal,” and “not tell anyone” . . . a rather obvious indication that doppelganger hijinks have just ensued, for those who are paying attention . . . (Wow, lately Matt has been more involved in the Kill Klaus games than Caroline.  What exactly is this show coming to?)

The Cannibal

Klaus and Stefan make their first encounter, since the whole “Emotions Flip Switch” thing.  Klaus promises Stefan that, by way of saying thanks for delivering Mikael to him, Klaus will grant him freedom from his own compulsion, upon Mikael’s death.

(Awww!  How generous of Klaus!  Personally, I would have settled for a Wii Entertainment System, and one of those fun little “Just Dance” games.)  Then, Klaus and Stefan make out . . . Just kidding!

Back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Damon and Mikael are shooting the breeze, and discussing Mikael’s all vampire diet.  Apparently, Mikael’s decision to hunt “the predator,” instead of the prey, stems, in a weird way, from his guilt for creating the vampire population to begin with.  Talk about eating your feelings!

This conversation is interrupted upon Stefan’s entrance, and instruction that Mikael’s “body” must be delivered to Klaus.  Damon responds that Stefan is no longer a part of the plan.  And then Mikael EATS HIM

Nom, Nom, Nom . . . tastes like Ripper.”

. . . well, really he just gnaws on his neck, a little bit.

I love how horrified Damon looked by the prospect of someone SNACKING ON HIS BROTHER, particularly given how many women and men, his brother has similarly snacked on.

My brother is going to have one hell of an ugly hickey . . .”

Damon suggests to Mikael that a neck breaking would have been a more humane way to temporarily take him out of commission.  I don’t know, I think the Vampire Hickey Method was great . . . It sure beats all those boring stakings, we’ve witnessed, of late . . .

“You wouldn’t feel that way, if I shoved this up your ass.”

The Betrayal

Back at the party, Klaus and Tyler are doing the whole “Hybrid / Sire” bonding thing, when Klaus lets Tyler in on a little secret . . . he has Baby Hybrid brothers, now!  And they are all at the party, waiting patiently to kill Tyler’s friends and lover.  Now, THAT’s sibling rivalry, for you.  But Klaus is not a total douchebag (just about 99.9999% of one).

“Don’t worry, Tylerpoo.  You will always be my favorite.”

Klaus then (1) compels Tyler’s mother to go to church, and PRAY for the Scooby Gang; and (2) he gives Tyler the opportunity to warn his friends about what’s about to go down, likely figuring that, by the time they try to do something about it, it will be too late, anyway  .  . .

Tyler then brings Caroline to one of his twenty or so BEDROOMS to have wild, hot, and dirty sex, YAY to talk about what “Caroline’s friends” are planning to do to Klaus.  Caroline claims she doesn’t know.  Actually, for once, she’s not lying.  But, she tells Tyler, that, even if she DID know, she wouldn’t tell him, because, as Klaus’ sire he’s Team Evil, now, and, therefore, can’t be trusted.  Tyler responds to this by .  . . VERVAINING HER IN THE NECK!

Would this be a bad time to ask, if I could borrow fifty bucks?  No?  Gee, thanks!”

Talk about COLD.  Apparently, this is a very bad day for Vampire Barbies.  It’s an OK day for Human Ken dolls, though.  Tyler finds Matt and commandeers his help to do what he, as Klaus’ bitch, literally no longer can: (1) bring Caroline to safety; and (2) warn the rest of the Scooby Gang that the Big Bad Hybrid, has brought some Big Bad Reinforcements, along to the party with him.

“Listen, Matt.  I’m going to do something very nice for you.  I am going to allow you to fondle my unconscious girlfriend.  I mean, that’s what friends are for, right?”

The Battle Royale

Here’s another important scene for you, that seems fairly useless, on first watch.  Klaus sees “Elena,” and stops by to metaphorically whip out his member to her, and remind her what a SUPER EVIL SUPER VILLAIN, he is.  When Klaus notes that “Elena,” seems nervous, she replies, “No, I just don’t like you.”

BAZINGA!”

Oooh . . . SASSY!  Klaus then warns Faux-lena that, whatever plan the Scooby Gang has cooked up against him, it’s going to fail, miserably, because . . . well . . . because clearly, while Klaus has been away on Hybrid business, he’s also been watching Seasons 1 and 2 of The Vampire Diaries on DVD.  There’s actually a bit more to this conversation.  But we don’t get to hear it yet, because we are busy watching Damon de-heart some newbie hybrid security guard.

“I hope you enjoyed your two seconds of screen time, Klaus’ extra!”

Our hero then enters the Lockwood house to find Klaus’ bitch, Tyler, on his way out . . .Wall  Slams and Bite Fights Galore ensue.  It’s kind of sexy, actually.

“Hey, Ty . . . mind if I throw a breath mint in their, before we finish fighting?  That’s pretty rank.”

Then Bonnie has to ruin tthe Glorious Tamon Moment with her Witchy Migraine making fingers, which she uses to make Tyler pass out.

Wow, I guess he’s REALLY not a fan of My Morning Jacket . . .”

And another one down . . . another one down .  . . another one bites the dust.

“I’m practicing my Thriller Dance.  What do you think?”

They really are just dropping like flies, this week, aren’t they?  I had to laugh when Damon bitched at Bonnie for Witch Migraining Damon, in addition to Tyler.

Dammit!  I have a Bonnie in my ear!”

Silly Damon!  Haven’t you learned by now, Bonnie’s going to take every single possible opportunity to torture you, at every chance she gets?

This is also the part of the story, where we learn that DAMON is the one holding the pretty, pretty Originals-killing peni$ dagger, since HE is the only vampire still standing with “permission” to enter the Lockwood mansion . . .

The Showdown

The moment we’ve all been waiting for finally arrives, when Klaus finds himself face-to-face with Mikael . . . having instructed his hybrids to bring the rest of the party outside, in preparation for this epic confrontation.  Of course, said confrontation would seem a whole lot more epic, if Mikael could actually cross the threshhold into the Lockwood Mansion.

“Might I be invited in for a bite to eat? I’ve brought this delicious doppelganger tart for you to try.”

Now, the Big Bad Pair are just standing a few feet away from one another, having a pissing contest.  Mikael goads Klaus a bit, reminding him what a coward he is, and explaining to him that, while those trusty hybrids were sired by Klaus, they could still be compelled to rip him to shreds, by Original Mikael . . .

Gay for Klaus . . . but ZOMBIES for Mikael.

Oh, and it seems Mikael has an ace up his sleeve . . . Elena . . . at knifepoint.  Hello, Blood Bag!  This pissing contest just got REAL . . .

You know, I talk a lot on this website about Ugly Cry Faces, but you know who has a GORGEOUS Cry Face, Joseph Morgan  . . . in fact, in the GORGEOUS Cry Face department, Joseph gives Ian a REAL run for his money!

HAWWWWT!

Klaus really gets those waterworks flowing, when Mikael starts telling him how nobody really cares about him, and that he can only earn loyalty by controlling it.

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Well, that’s only partly true, Mikael, I happen to know a lot of TVD fans, who care about Klaus, a whole bunch.

Klaus doesn’t really believe that Mikael would kill Elena, since she’s the lead female character on The Vampire Diaries his “ace in the hole.”  And decides to call his bluff.  Mikael then, tells Klaus that his impulses are what keep him from being great.  And so . . . MIKAEL KILLS ELENA  . . . on impulse, of course (which, I would have been a lot more shocked by, if there was actually a chance in hell that she would actually die).

O Face Alert!”

But it looks like the joke is really on Mikael, because, moments later, as Damon pops up inside the house, with his peni$ dagger, Elena comes back from the dead . . . Oh, wait . . . that’s KATHERINE!  And she’s holding those wolfsbane grenades we saw Damon and Elena making at the beginning of the episode.  “Ba-boom,” she says, gleefully, as she blasts those Baby Vamp Teen Wolves.

SUCKAS!”

“Baby you’re a fiiiiiiirework.  Come on show them whaaat you’re worth . . . without limbs.”

Things start happening pretty fast, then.  Damon BEGINS to stake Klaus, actually getting as far, as to have the knife in his chest (Honestly, I’m not sure, how he didn’t die instantly from that.  Peni$ Dagger officially sucks.)  But then STEFAN tackles Damon to the ground.   OUCH!

This causes the Peni$ Dagger to fall to the ground, and Klaus to get it.  Klaus then rushes out of the house, and stabs Mikael, causing him to burst into flames .  . .  (Well, that’s one way to clean up a dead body.)

It looks like one of those commercials for Tums antacids. 

Wow, nice knowing ya, Mikael, you were . . . not nearly as bad ass, as I hoped you would be.

You do have an excellent tan for a vampire, though . . .

Then, Klaus, who oddly enough, like his brother Elijah, seems to be a man of his word, at least, to some extent, generously frees Stefan from his compulsion, giving him the opportunity to face what he has done, should he ever decide to turn back on his emotions.

I’ll never forget you, Klaus . . . (unless you compel me to do so, which, under the circumstances, I probably wouldn’t  mind that much).”

But . . . will he?  More on that in just a bit . . .

The Break-up

Caroline awakens in some random Bedroom.

“I’m so glad that pesky vervaining didn’t mess up my hair or makeup.  I may win prom queen yet . . .”

Soon after, Tyler pops in, braced for a lecture.

“Well, this is awkward.”

As expected, Caroline is quick to scold Tyler for vervaining his girlfriend to keep her out of danger, as opposed to . . . oh . . . I don’t know, telling her to go home and watch Dancing with the Stars, or something.  But Tyler didn’t do that, because he KNOWS Caroline, and KNOWS that she would never be able to willingly leave the house, knowing that her friends are in danger.  In other words, Tyler stabbed his girlfriend FOR HER OWN GOOD.  (How very Damon from “The Last Dance,” of him.)

Caroline then admits that she is having issues with the fact that Tyler seems so very cool with being gay for Klaus.  So, Tyler, does his best to explain to Caroline why this is so.  And, for the record, I think he makes a pretty good argument . . . a selfish argument, sure.  But a good one.

You see, for Tyler, the coolest thing about being a hybrid, is that he can change into a werewolf at will,  or, not at all, if that’s what he chooses.  This means,  he never has to endure the painful transformation we witnessed him and Caroline experiencing together, last season.

So, what if Tyler is destined to spend the rest of eternity as Klaus’ b*tch?  At least that won’t result in him having to crack all his bones every month, while dirty, naked, and smoking hot, looking?  It’s a pretty fair trade, as far as Tyler is concerned . . .

I’ll drink to that.”

Tyler hopes that Caroline will forgive him his Klaus’ b*tchness, just as she forgave his killing that random slutty chick, back in the “Masquerade,” when their relationship truly began, his monthly werewolf-ness, that whole, “left her locked in the cage a few minutes too long,” thing, the “shooting” Stefan thing, and the almost killing Damon thing.  But, nope, apparently, GAY FOR KLAUS is the straw that breaks the Hybrid’s back.

All it takes from Tyler, is one look at Caroline’s face, and he knows the two are dunzo . . .

“One goodbye f*&K?”

“Think about it, and get back to me later . . .”

Honestly, I’m a bit surprised at Caroline, who is usually SO much less judgmental.  After all, Katherine didn’t NEED compulsion OR a sire relationship, back in early Season 2, when she forced the Vampire Barbie to spy on her own best friends, Elena and Stefan, and bring news back to her.  You would think that she, of all people, could understand the notion of being forced to do the bidding of those who are significantly more powerful than you . . .

In addition, to being a Forwood fan, who just LOOOOOVES watching these two crazy kids get naked on a regular basis, I’m upset by the Forwood breakup, because I suspect it will be what throws Tyler off the rails into full-fledged villainy, just when we were starting to examine the complex layers of his character.  Being Klaus’ b*tch is one thing . . . but being the Robin to Klaus’ Batman, is quite the other . . .

“No me gusta!”

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The Comfort (and the Cockblock)

“Is it hot in here, or is it just us?”

We get our Delena scene a little early this week, in that it’s the second to the last scene, as opposed to the usual last one.  And, while I was hoping for something a bit more substantial (like a kiss, or a love declaration) given this is a pre-hiatus episode, I’m still fairly content with what we got.

We find poor Damon by the fire, brooding, angry, and incredibly distraught over the fact that Klaus is still alive.  After all, despite having seemingly thought of EVERYTHING, and corrected all the mistakes of Plans Past, Damon and his gang still lost.  More adorable soulful crying ensues.

Fortunately, for Damon, Elena knows him well enough to know exactly what he needs, cupping his face, and comforting him, in a way that is sweet, romantic, and above all, surprisingly optimistic, given all that’s happened.  The biggest development in the Delena relationship this week, is the creation of this “we” Elena refers to.  Elena used to use Damon’s name every chance that she got, typically as a means for lecturing him, or setting his own motives and desires apart from her own.

But now, Elena views her and Damon as a unit, a team . . . a couple(?)  “WE will survive this,” Elena assures Damon, as she strokes his cheeks.

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“He’s never coming back, you know.  We’ve lost him, for good,” Damon says bitterly about his brother.

“Then we’ll let him go,” replies Elena.

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My,  my, my, have the tables turned!  Back during “The Birthday,” Damon was telling Elena that Stefan wasn’t going to come back to himself in her lifetime.  He was instructing her to let go.

Then, gradually, as the season progressed, Elena gave Damon hope that his brother would eventually return to himself.   But now, it’s Elena who seems willing to be free of Stefan, while Damon is still mourning his brother’s loss .  . .

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It seems odd that all of this is going down, just moments after Stefan’s been given freedom from Klaus’ compulsion.  But, hey, I’m a Delena fan.  Who am I to complain about a thing like that?

Speaking of me being a Delena fan . . . WE WERE COCKBLOCKED AGAIN!  AGAIN, TVD WRITERS!  Why do you hate us, so?  Damon’s and Elena’s faces were inches apart.  They were clearly about to kiss, when, RING RING RING, it’s friggin Katherine!

“Should I throw my phone in the fire, too?”

(And I never thought I’d say that about Katherine.)  Now, she’s two for two on her cockblock attempts.

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What Katherine says to Damon on the phone is fairly insignificant.  What IS significant about the scene, though, is who is in the car with him . . .

The REAL Deal

“You know, a few weeks back, you’re brother banged me in this car.  And, if you want to feel closer to him, that might be a good way to do it.  Just sayin’.”

“He still doesn’t know where it all went wrong,” says Katherine, frustratedly.

“He doesn’t need to know,” replies Stefan.

“I’m a little carsick.  Would you mind opening the window, so I don’t puke blood all over your face?”

When then flashback a bit, to learn that, during their meeting, Klaus told “Elena,” that, if Klaus died, the hybrids would be compelled to kill Damon.”  Katherine then went to La Casa de Rich and Awesome to wake him up, and tell him what was about to go down.  She instructed Stefan to turn back on his emotions and FEEL something for his brother, who Katherine loved, just as much as she loved Stefan.  (I KNEW IT!)

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And so, Stefan is able to fight compulsion, once again, in order to do the unthinkable . . . allow Klaus to kill Mikael and win, in order to save his brother’s life.

“If he comes back to himself . . . it won’t be because he loves me, it will be because he loves you.”

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How tragic it is that it was this action that caused Damon to see his brother as irredeemable?

I find it interesting that Katherine views “humanity” as a vampires’ greatest weakness . . .

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. . .  while, Klaus believes that weakness to be “love.”

Personally, I think a vampire’s greatest weakness is sh*tty planning abilities . . .

Katherine instructs Stefan to turn his emotions back on fully (now, apparently, they are only on half mast), because she likes the “old him” better.  But Stefan isn’t quite ready to do that, and I can’t say I mind.  After all, like I said, Ripper Stefan is funnier than regular Stefan.  He also has better hair and is a better dresser.  In fact, I’ve been waiting for Stefan to be a VOLUNTARY Ripper for nine episodes.  And now, it looks like we will finally get just that.

Speaking of Stefan, now it’s HIS turn to have a contingency plan . . .

The Aftermath

“Whaaaaaaaaazzzzupppp!”

Just like in the beginning of the episode, Stefan calls Klaus again, this time to “thank him,” for his freedom.  Klaus is smug, and tells Stefan he’s very welcome, with a big goofy grin on his face. Then he opens his little coffin storage container, and finds it EMPTY!

“You know, I’ve been wearing this black getup for about three episodes, now.  Do you think Damon has any shirts he can lend me?”

(Now, I’m just wondering how Stefan managed to move all those coffins, and when, between being staked and eaten, all those times, he’s had time to do so!)

“We . . . are . . . family.  I got all my sisters with me . . . except one.”

“I’m still waiting for my homecoming date.  Do you think he stood me up?”

Anywhoo . . . remember how I said Ripper Stefan has better one liners than his more angelic counterpart?  Well, his last two lines pre-hiatus, might be his best ever.  “As someone who has been one step ahead of everyone for 1000 years, were you prepared for THIS?” Stefan asks with a smirk, as Klaus hangs up the phone.

GAME ON!

As for the promo for TVD’s post-hiatus episode, ‘The New Deal,” I’ve only been able to find the shortened U.S. promo for it, so far.  And, honestly, it feels like a bit of a cop out, considering that about 10 of those precious 20 seconds are spent on the DATE, and scenes from THIS episode.  Nonetheless, here you go . . .

I’m sure they’ll give us something more substantial soon.  But, for now, since it seems we have quite a few TVD-less weeks ahead of us, let’s discuss the first half of the Season a bit, in the comment section, OK?  What are your thoughts, on Mikael’s less-than-monumental demise?

“Goodbye, Cruel World . . . again . . . for good . . . maybe.”

On Forwood’s tragic breakup?

“Why couldn’t I just have said yes to the Goodbye F*&K?  Dammit!”

On Delena becoming a “we?”

On Katherine becoming Stefan’s conscience?

Oh, and how long exactly do you think it’s going to take Stefan to open those precious little coffin lids, most notably Elijah’s?

Because, it looks from the promo, like he takes his sweet time doing it, while our friends in Mystic Falls remain sitting ducks for Klaus?  I don’t know.  If it were me, I’d be de-daggering those family members so fast, my head would spin . . .

But, hey, who are we to judge, right?

Until next time, Fangbangers . . .

[www.juliekushner.com][Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

Family Day at Vampire Rehab – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Ordinary People”

“Don’t cry, my Darling NiKlaus!  In another few thousand years, your hair will be much less Rats Nest-y.” 

Hey there, Fangbangers!  So, I’m going let you guys in on a little secret.  (Shhhh . . . don’t tell anybody.)

OK.  Here goes .  . . historically speaking, I’ve never really been a big fan of “Flashback Episodes of TVD” . . .

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I like pretty costumes, elaborate hairdos, and inflated production values as much as the next girl . . .

KLAUS: “The 1490’s look good on you, Dear Katherine.” 

KATHERINE: “I wish I could say the same to you, Klaus . . .”

ELIJAH: “You do realize he could eat you for saying that, don’t you?”

I just tend to prefer my TVD gang to hang out in the 21st century .  . . WHERE THEY BELONG.

That all changed this week, with “Ordinary People”  . . .  an episode, which I feel was, by far, one of the best flashback episodes in TVD history.  (Tied only with the absolutely epic “Blood Brothers,” of Season 1.)

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I mean, sure, it had all the trappings of your classic TVD flashback episode . . .  the costumes, the hair, the extensive use of voiceover, a slew of main characters, who were suspiciously absent throughout the hour (I’m looking at you, Caroline, Tyler, Jeremy, Katherine, and Matt.).

“Sorry, I missed the episode.  I was sleeping off my hangover . . . and a long, hot, night of awesome Forwood sex.” 

But it also offers – among other things – answers to MANY long-standing questions about the Original Family, the Original Witch, and the Original Vampire Hunter Mikael . . .

 . . . some massive levels of Salvatore Brother Bonding . . .

 . . . well sort of . . .

 . . . Damon Sexy Dancing at a bar that is most definitely NOT the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls . .  .

 . . . and, perhaps, my personal favorite, not one, but TWO, adorably erotic Delena scenes, one of which takes place, of all places, IN A BED . . .

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Sounds pretty awesome, right?

So, what are we waiting for?  Let’s explore some “Ordinary People!”

(Once again, special thanks to Andre for the lovely screencaps you see here . . .)

The Lockwood Original Diaries – Pictionary Style


Get it?  It’s Dances with Wolves!  Let’s add Awesome Artist to the list of Fabulously F*&kable Damon Salvatore traits . .  .

This episode begins, rather fittingly, right where the last one left off: in the Lockwood dungeon . . . a set piece that arguably has become almost as popular as the Only Bar  / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls.  Alaric has brought Elena along to show her All the Pretty Pictures that Mason Lockwood helped them discover on the wall of the cave.  Damon comes along for the ride as well, to startle the always-jumpy Elena, and make cute snarky comments throughout the investigation.

You’re too hot to be scary.  Sorry, Damon!

After all, he hasn’t technically been “invited in” to this establishment, now has he?

Stupid vampire rules! 

The first thing the Scooby Crew ascertains from the cave drawings is that werewolves have been around Mystic Falls long before Stefan and Damon unwittingly encountered them, back in 1864.

I like Damon’s drawing better.  Cave Person FAIL! 

Now, whether these werewolves are ancestors to the current clan of Lockwood’s hasn’t yet been established.   But, for what it’s worth, I THINK they were Lockwoods (I’ve, personally, always thought Klaus’ biological dad was a Lockwood), and Damon seems to agree with me . . .

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“Lockwood Diaries – Pictionary Edition . . .”

Actually, as the threesome eventually find out, the history detailed on the wall of the cave is not the history of werewolves at all.  Rather, it is .  . . wait for it . . . the Original Vampire Family’s history.  We know this because, as we see in our first of many flashbacks from this episode, Rebekah has helpfully carved her family members names (some of them, at least) into the wall of the cave, to preserve for posterity . . .

So, this . . .

 . . . is basically the Viking version of THIS . . .

The names are written in a type of Viking Script.  Believe it or not, this seemingly random fact immediately answers two important questions that many of us have long-wondered about the Original Family: (1) How old are they?  The answer to THAT question is roughly the same age as the Vikings, who, as Rebekah would tell us later, colonized America in secret, long before history books would suggest.  This, as many of you savvy viewers caught, explains the odd little Viking reference she made in Alaric’s history class, back during “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”

“What’s the Viking word for ‘foreshadowing’?” 

 It also explains, (2) why a big bad vampire like Klaus would seem so oddly fixated on a small, seemingly inconsequential town like Mystic Falls.  Namely, HE GREW UP THERE!

Homesick . . . broody . . . and in need of a hug.  (Tyler!  Get over here and hug me, B*tch!)

Oh, and here’s the first kicker (which most of us had ALSO already figured out) Original Vampire / Kat Eater Mikael is .  . . wait for it . . . THE ORIGINAL FAMILY DAD!

I wanna be like Mike . . . actually, no I really don’t. 

But wait a minute . . . you might be saying .  . . why would a FATHER be trying to hunt down and murder his own kids?

(It wouldn’t be the first time!) 

Well, I’m getting to that .  . .

Happy music plays in the background,  as Alaric excitedly takes pictures of all the cave etching, so that he can study them for hours on end.  Seriously, this is a history buff’s wet dream . . .  You GO, Chunky Monkey!

“Are you mocking me?” 

Alaric Saltzman Gets His Study on, while Damon and Elena  . . .

Poor Alaric!  Who knew, back when we first met him, that he was just two dead girlfriends away from becoming Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

As Alaric painstakingly analyzes the less surprising drawings from the cave wall  . . . “vampire” . . . “werewolf” . . . “sun” . . . “moon,” I find my attention continually being drawn toward the hot and sweaty activity going on directly behind his head.  It looks as though Damon and Elena have decided to continue the Vampire Slayer training that the pair happily started during “Smells Like Teen Spirit” . . .

Once again, Damon has cleverly used this “training” exercise, as an excuse to hold Elena close and fondle her.  (YAY!)

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Mommy LIKE . . . A LOT!

We see this when he, once again, grabs at her from behind, and makes a joking move to bite her neck, illustrating that, in this particular faux battle, the vampire has won.

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Since we all know how much TVD LOVES its parallels and foreshadowing, many clever viewers have already predicted that Elena will be forced to use these vampire fighting skills, FOR REAL, some time before the end of the season.

We’ve already seen her use what she learned in her first fighting lessons with Damon and Alaric to temporarily incapacitate Ripper Stefan.  And I’m thinking that there is more to the emphasis on these fighting scenes than JUST to show Delena foreplay . . .

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. . . not that there’s anything wrong with Delena foreplay, of course. 😉

Later, when Alaric hits a snag in his studies, Elena decides to hit up Barbie Klaus / New Head Cheerleader Rebekah for some inside information . . .

A Tale of Two Exes . . .

“The Boy is MINE!” 

At school, Elena shows Rebekah a picture of one of the cave etchings, and asks for answers.

“Actually, this is just a naked picture of Stefan I found on his Facebook page.  Look what you’ve been missing all these years.”

At first, Rebekah is dismissive.   But when Elena threatens to awaken Vampire Hunter Mikael, otherwise known as Daddy Dearest, she gets PISSED, and shuts down completely.  As Barbie Klaus stalks away, we are treated to a second flashback, this one features Klaus, and the ever elusive,  sexy-haired, Elijah . . .

 . . . when it comes to haircare.  (But when it comes to jousting?  Maybe . . .)

 . . . engaged in swordplay.  Then, Mikael pops in to verbally, emotionally, and physically abuse Klaus, as the rest of the family stands silently by.

Mikael (who looks oddly hot, with his long crimped hairdo) takes the phrase “Bad Dad,” to a whole new level, when he takes the sword from Elijah, and begins jabbing it at Klaus, until the latter eventually falls to the ground.  “Some days, it’s a miracle, you are still alive, Boy,” Mikael says harshly, as he holds the sword to his petrified “son’s” neck.

“Is this because I forgot to charge your iPhone, after I used it?” 

Some might say, this is nothing more than an example of Tough Love.  After all, Mikael is a Viking.  He knows how difficult battle can be.  And he’s only trying to keep his family safe, right?  And yet, the way that Mikael seems to take joy in berating and abusing Klaus, so much more than his other children, suggests that there’s a bit more to it than that . . .

Meanwhile, in the present day . . .

“I’m naked right now.” 

“I bet you are.”

Later, after school, Elena is gabbing on the phone with future boyfriend Damon, when Rebekah texts her to pop on over to La Casa de Rich and Awesome for some Girl Bonding Time . . .

Rebekah’s texting now?  Wow, she sure learned a lot about modern cell phone technology during those five minutes she played with an iPhone during “The Reckoning.” 

Elena immediately thinks that Rebekah has changed her mind about giving her the details of her past.  And she MAY very well have.  But first, she wants Elena to help her pick  out a dress for the upcoming Homecoming Dance.  Ahh, now we know that Rebekah is definitely Klaus’ sister.  These two definitely seem to have an almost compulsive need for social acceptance.

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I actually think it’s pretty adorable – in a fairly psychotic way — that Rebekah feels the need to compel what is probably her entire cheerleading squad, sans Caroline, to model prospective dresses for her, when she could just as easily have tried them on herself.

It’s America’s Next Top Model . . . Future Vampire Food Edition!

It kind of reminded me of Cher from Clueless, who brilliantly created that application for her computer that modeled her entire wardrobe FOR HER.

You know, now that I think about it, Rebekah actually vaguely resembles Alicia Silverstone in Clueless  . . . weird. 

Of course, Rebekah is no dummy.  And beneath her supposedly fun and carefree request that Elena help Rebekah pick a “model,” whose dress she will wear for the Big Event, is the subtle threat that, if Elena doesn’t behave, Rebekah could turn her into a mindless zombie, just like she did with these girls, and, then, eventually EAT HER.

Hmm . . . Rebekah seems to prefer eating girls.  Do you think they taste better?

Message sent and received, Elena helps Rebekah pick out a dress (the red one).  Then, Rebekah sends the girls away, compelling them to forget everything they just experienced.  Except, she never instructs the girl in red to remove her dress.  Perhaps, the two girls aren’t the same size?

With the mindless zombies gone, Rebekah then traipses up to Stefan’s room to start delving into Stefan’s underwear drawer, and reading his infamous diaries.  (How very Damon Salvatore of her!)

“You know, I don’t get you two as a couple,” Rebekah begins conversationally, upon seeing a framed promotional still of Stefan and Elena from Season 1.   That’s OK, Rebekah.  Lots of Delena fans don’t get it either. 😉

Haha!  I like these girl talk sessions.  I can’t wait until Rebekah and Elena start gossiping about Damon.

But, alas, it is not to be.  Of course, Buzzkill Elena . . .

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 . . .  just wants to talk Viking History, which sucks, because I really wanted to learn what kind of naughty souvenirs Stefan kept in his closets from his Ripper Days.  (Ripper Stefan seems like he’d be rather kinky, right?)

Anywhoo, with one final warning (and possibly another foreshadowing) that she will only allow Elena to learn what SHE (Rebekah) wants her to learn, Rebekah begins to launch into the story of her past, which I will share with you, in just a bit . . .

Brotherly Drunkenness

“Has anyone ever told you, your eyes are mesmerizing?”

After hanging up with his future girlfriend, Elena, Damon decides to pay a visit to the still locked up, and rather clammy-looking Ripper Stefan.

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When Damon admits to not quite buying Elena’s and Lexi’s Brilliant Ripper Detox plan, Ripper Stefan responds, in what very well be the most insightful remark we’ve ever heard from the character.  “Oh, and we should all listen to Elena, because her plans always work out so well.”

THANK YOU, STEFAN!  I’m glad SOMEBODY finally realized that Elena tends to have the WORST IDEAS EVER, when it comes to defeating the Big Bads . . .

But, hey, look on the bright side, Elena.  At least YOU never hid the moonstone in your soapdish . . .

Never . . . gets . . . old . . . 

Damon too begins to become concerned that Elena’s Magical Mystical Plan is not working, when he suggests that Rebekah might kill Elena, and Stefan seems completely unmoved by this prospect.  “Wow, you really have given up,” says Damon sadly.  “Screw this Lexi plan.  We could both use a drink,” he concludes, easily removing Stefan’s chains.

“I’ll drink to that.” 

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my Drunk Damon as much as the next girl.  But, if you recall, Lexi’s Magical Detox Stare from last week, you know that what Damon is doing, is effectively undoing the equivalent of an ENTIRE YEAR of sobriety for Stefan, and all for a single night out on the town.  Bloodaholics Anonymous would, most definitely,  not approve . . .

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Have I mentioned that Damon Salvatore just so happens to be the PERFECT wingman?  While sticking to liquor himself, Damon not only lines up beautiful girls for Stefan to drink throughout the night, he also compels them to forget what happened, once Stefan’s finished.  He even gives them parting gifts of ugly red neck scarves, to wear, as payment for their services.  Not a bad deal, I’d say . . .

“Tell me something, Callie.  Do you COME here often?” 😉  

In a stroke of pure genius, Damon even challenges Stefan to a game of Quarters, during which he sticks to a bottle of bourbon, and his brother drinks the bartender!  It’s cute . . . in a twisted, sort of sadistic way . . .  In the midst of all this, Damon even finds time for a little bar-top dancing, Coyote Ugly style . . .

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(Unfortunately, the song playing in the background is not “Enjoy the Silence.”)

Fun, brotherly bonding aside, I must say, I do have one slight quibble with the notion that Damon can just force Stefan to gorge himself on blood, without the fear of anyone . . . oh . . . I don’t know . . . DYING!  By way of example, take a look at this little pictoral representation of the TVD episode, “The Birthday.”

BEFORE:

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AFTER:

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I mean, correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t that the entire point of Klaus getting Stefan high on blood, so that, “once he started, he wouldn’t be able to stop?” (How many times have we heard THAT line, this season?)  Now, granted, Stefan’s been “sober for almost a year now,” but a gorge fest like this would seemingly be enough to send any vampire over the edge.  So, why is Stefan “I’m Freaking Hungry” Salvatore suddenly so calm about all of this . . .

Does turning off one’s emotions, also turn off his hunger?  I would think not, or else Klaus probably wouldn’t have done it.  It just seems a bit inconsistent, if you ask me.

Oh well . . . I guess the ever-changing characterization of Ripper Stefan is just one of those aspects of the show, on which its writers and I will perpetually disagree . . . But hey, enough negativity, let’s bring on the Brotherly Love!

Here’s the interesting thing.  Though Damon is clearly frustrated by the fact that his brother has gone Ripper, there’s a part of him, that has wanted to go drinking and dancing, with his usually judgmental brother for decades.  And, now, he is finally getting the chance to do so!  If only Stefan was able to un-douche himself long enough to enjoy it with him!

“I love you, MAN!” 

So, Damon tries a new tactic . . . namely, insulting Stefan’s masculinity.  He rightly tells Stefan, that, chains or no chains, he can never truly be free, if he continues to be Klaus’ b*tch.

And the only way Stefan can break himself of  that is to help KILL Klaus.  Now, the point of this little bar outing becomes clear.  Damon wanted to give Stefan a taste of freedom, to show him exactly what he was missing, while under Klaus’ thrall.

Admittedly, this was a pretty darn impressive plan, especially coming from the Moonstone Soapdish Guy.  Bravo Damon!

“But Klaus, can’t be killed,” whines Stefan, clearly taking buzzkill lessons from his ex.

“Maybe I can help with that,” answers a voice from behind the two brothers.  “The Salvatore Boys, I presume?”

Oh, look!  It’s Vampire Hunter Mikael.

Ruh Roh!

But where’s KAT?  Did YOU eat ALL of her, you PIG?  Did you?   Did YOU?

Meanwhile, back at La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Rebekah has launched, head-first, into her family history  . . .

Meet the Originals . . .

Right off the bat, we learn, much as we suspected that the necklace Stefan gave to Elena, back in Season 1, actually belonged to the Original Witch, and that the symbol on the front of the necklace, actually MEANS “witch.”  (How clever?)

I actually think this necklace gets more screentime than Matt . . .

So, here’s the deal about the Original Family.  They apparently emigrated from Europe, after one of their children died from the plague, hearing rumors of a MYSTICAL, magical place where everyone lived longer, and was healthy.  Hoping to spare their children, and themselves, some untimely deaths, the Original Family moved to Mystic Falls, which, at the time, was overrun by werewolves.

The humans and the werewolves lived peacefully, for a time.  But then, one day, Klaus and young Henry snuck out to watch the werewolf transformations, and Henry got eaten, in the process.

R.I.P. Little Henry Original.  We barely knew YE! 

OUCH!  What a way to go!  Now, the Original Family had to accept the fact that, wherever they were, death was inescapable .  . . or WAS it . . .

You see, the Original Family had a witch friend, who knew of a curse, or spell, that could make individuals immortal.  Mikael and the Original Mother, Esther, ask this witch (I think her name is Ayana, or something), to cast this spell on all of them.  However, Ayana refuses to do this, claiming that it will . . . wait for it . . . upset the balance of nature.  (Yet another annoying catch phrase, TVD fans have had to endure for three years, now. ;))

“I have no function in this story, whatsoever . . .”

This means, that Mama ESTHER has to perform the spell.

It’s a pretty cute couple, right?  No wonder all their kids are so hot! 

Oh . . . wait . . . I didn’t tell you, yet, did I?  You see, Esther, i.e. Klaus, Elijah and Rebekah’s mother, is also THE ORIGINAL WITCH!

Since, as far as we know, it is impossible to be BOTH a witch and a vampire (Sorry Bonnie!), Esther was unable to become immortal herself.   (So, instead, she became some ghost thingy, who likes to hang out with Vampire Vicki in the after life.  Go figure!)

As the Original kiddies were never let in on this Grand Plan, to say it was traumatizing for them to be STABBED FATALLY in the stomach by their own fathers, and then forced to drink from one of their neighbors, is probably the understatement of the century.

“Anyone got some stain stick I could borrow?” 

Now, the Originals were vampires, burned by the sunlight, weakened by vervain, and harshly shunned from the werewolf homes, where they once felt so welcome.  They also learned that they could be killed by the same White Oak Tree used in the spell to give them immortality.  So, they burned it . . . (though, clearly, a few stakes covered in the ash from that tree, remain.)

 . . . can prevent Forest Fires, Original Family.  (Smokey the Bear is TOTALLY judging you, right now.)

Also, their chief personality traits were heightened.  Rebekah became more stubborn.  Elijah became more . . . honorable.  (“Yes, I know, that sounds terrible,” she said sarcastically.)  Father Mikael (who, I guess stabbed HIMSELF to make the transition) became more prideful.  And Klaus became more intolerant of rejection.

Now, that’s a face only an Original Witch could love . . . 

So, what’s YOUR most dominant trait? 😉

But something else happened to Klaus . . . something that would doom this family for all eternity.  He started showing werewolf traits, thereby illustrating to Mikael that he wasn’t HIS son, but rather, some random Lockwood werewolf dude who Esther screwed . . . a dude, who, unfortunately we have yet to meet.  Knowing that the existence of werewolf/vampire hybrids in the world would . . . you guessed it . . . UPSET THE BALANCE OF NATURE, Esther puts a curse on her own sun to make his werewolf traits dormant, and then, promptly turns her back on her own son, to appease the increasingly tempestuous Mikael.

This is where the events of the story become a little hazy.  According to Rebekah, despite Esther’s moves to protect her family from Bastard Kid Klaus, her infidelity prompts Mikael to rip out Esther’s heart, while Klaus watches.  (Wow, no wonder Klaus is so effed up . . .)

Hey!  You stole my heart! 

After this happens, the rest of the Original Family, including Papa Mikael, scatters, while Rebekah, Klaus, and Elijah remain behind to bury their mother.  Upon doing this, the three now-orphaned children all hold hands, Ring Around the Rosie-style, and promise to stick together as one, always and forever . . . at least, until the inevitable time when Klaus gets into a fight with one of his siblings, and decides to dagger them for decades.

(Note: We know that Rebekah met the dagger, at least once, back when she chose Stefan over Klaus in the 1920’s.   But judging from her statement, that Klaus was “disappointed by her,” many times, we can also assume that Rebekah had met the pointy end of the dagger prior to the events of “Klaus,” in 1492, as well.  Naughty girl!)

Finished with her story, Rebekah threatens Elena with DEATH, if she ever goes after Klaus.  Fair enough, right?  But wait . . . now it’s Elena’s turn to share some news.  Upon reviewing those cave drawings again, Elena comes upon a set of pictures signifying the death of the Original Witch.

And, according to THOSE pictures, it was KLAUS who killed his mother, as punishment for banishing his hybrid side, NOT Michael.

Elena shares this information with Rebekah, in hopes to secure her help in murdering Klaus.  “He took Stefan’s life.  We have to make it stop,” she pleads.  But, of course, Rebekah is infuriated and extremely distraught by the news, which — though she continues to deny it — on some level, she seems to know its true.

Claire Holt REALLY flexes her acting chops in a major way, in the scene where she lashes out at Elena, in a mixture of fury, and inconsolate sadness.  She pushes the Doppelganger up against the doorframe, as she continues to scream “Shut up . . . don’t talk anymore . . . nothing.”

Now, that’s some seriously close talking! 

At first, I thought Rebekah might have compelled Elena’s voice away, which I suspect she could have, given that she no longer has her vervain necklace (Bonnie recently gave it to Alaric, so that he could study it.)  But the fact that she didn’t makes the whole scene more heartbreaking in a way,  Because it shows that Rebekah is more hurt, than she is angry, having been lied to for centuries by her own flesh and blood, the only person on whom she thought she could truly count.

It’s just so . . . tragic. 

“She’s just a girl, who lost her Mom too young, and loves recklessly and blindly, even if it consumes her,” Elena says of Rebekah, later on in the episode, when she’s discussing her day with Damon (more on that spectacular scene, later).

Though, on the surface Elena and Rebekah might seem very different . . . one is human . . . the other is an Original Vampire . . . one is blonde . . . the other is brunette . . . one is brash . . . the other is more reserved . . . etc., I think the two women definitely found a common ground this week, and learned that they are much more a like than they could have ever imagined.  I’m actually sort of looking forward to seeing this relationship grow and develop in the future.  And yet, a part of me is worried for Rebekah’s life, now that she has proven herself to be such a vulnerable and relatable character.

Here’s hoping you at least live long enough to attend the Mystic Falls Prom, Beks! 

On this show, Vulnerable and Relatable tends to be a death sentence, if you aren’t one of the Big Three cast members.  I hope I’m wrong about this . . .

Meanwhile, back at the bar that is NOT the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls . . .

Getting to the “Heart” of the Matter . . .

Everyone seems to have their own tactics regarding “Curing Stefan,” and though he doesn’t know the younger Salvatore Brother particularly well, Mikael might have the best one yet.  Sensing that Stefan might be the key to ascertaining Klaus’ whereabouts, he asks him out right, where the guy is.  In response, Stefan calmly notes that he has been compelled NOT to tell him.

So, Mikael ups the stakes by reaching into Damon’s chest, and literally wrapping his hand around his heart,  threatening to pull it out, if Stefan doesn’t talk . . .

Poor Damon!  Of all the near-death experiences he has had since the beginning of this series, this one is probably the most gruesome, not to mention dangerous.  Stefan initially reacts frighteningly little to the notion that his own brother is about to get his heart ripped out of his chest, causing viewers to wonder just how effectively Klaus HAD succeeded in turning Stefan’s emotions off.  But then, at the last second, he gaves, offering to deliver Klaus to Mikael, thereby saving Damon’s life . . . again.  (PHEW!)

“See, I’m not so bad.” 

Outside the bar, a Happy to Be Alive Damon ribs Stefan for his hidden “brotherly feelings,” and thanks him for saving his life.  “Be careful, Brother.  Your humanity is showing,” remarks Stefan, echoing a very popular promotional poster for the show that was released back in Season 2.

Though Stefan claims to only have saved his brother to secure his OWN freedom, and not because he particularly cares whether the latter lives or dies,  I’m not sure I buy that.  I mean, Stefan WAS seemingly able to fight off SOME of Klaus’ compulsion, in that he directly disobeyed his Master’s order, by agreeing to help Mikael.  So, it stands to reason that, in the context of that fighting, some of Stefan’s love for his brother leaked through his now-hardened heart.

Of course, that doesn’t stop Damon from kicking the sh*t out of his own brother, right there on the street.  Because . . . I mean . . . what’s a brotherly bonding session, without a little brotherly, ass kicking, right?  Man for a supposedly all-powerful, high on blood vampire, Stefan sure does get whacked around a lot, doesn’t he?

“Time for my nap!”

And now for the moment you have all been waiting for . . . if you are an Elena fan, at least . . .

A Bedtime Story

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First, before I do anything, I just have to share this nifty-little Delena-themed chart I found online.  It’s SO PERFECT and spot-on, it’s not even funny . . .

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Now, I’m going to link you to the Bedroom Scene in it’s entirety, because, no matter what I say about it, I suspect I won’t truly be able to give it justice.  Here you go!

So, yeah . .  . as you saw, or didn’t see, Elena arrives home from DAMON’S house, to find Damon cuddling up in HER bed, with HER teddy bear . . .

Though mildly turned on, horny, sexually aroused annoyed by this uninvited intrusion, Elena doesn’t kick Damon out of her bed, as we’ve seen her do in the past.  Instead, she crawls under the covers WITH him

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Well . . . actually, he’s still ON TOP of the covers.  But it’s a start.

(Sidenote:  For those of you out there who are Dawson’s Creek / Pacey / Joey fans, how much did this entire scene remind you of the parallel bedroom scene from “Stolen Kisses.)

“You know you are truly in love with someone when you can spend the entire night just watching them sleep.”   OK.  I just had to put that out there.  Dorky fangirl moment, over . . .)

This is truly a testament to how comfortable Elena feels with Damon . . . that she can unself-consciously get into bed with him, and talk about the events of the day, without experiencing any sort of apprehension or fear that he will take advantage of the situation.

Another sign that the Delena relationship is hop, skipping and jumping, toward romantic bliss is the fact that the usually uber judgmental Elena, doesn’t yell at or lecture Damon for releasing Stefan (She knew he had done it, because he had called her, while it was happening.), as he (and we) fully expect her to do.

When you think about it, this is really the first time we’ve seen Elena GENUINELY trust Damon’s judgment.  After three seasons, she’s finally figured out that Damon’s century and a half of experience with his brother, outranks Elena’s year and a half.  It’s a big step for Elena, who’s always been somewhat of a control freak, particularly where the people she loves are concerned.

And since we are on the subject of big steps,  I simply adore the way Elena turns out the light, while Damon is still in the room . . . an inherent invitation for him to spend the night, which is re-emphasized with her final words to him of, “Can we talk about this tomorrow?”

Yeah . .  . right . . . “talk.” 

Then Elena turns her body toward Damon, and moves her head inches away from his on the pillow (KISS DAMMIT!  KISS! KISS!  COME ON!  SO CLOSE! You are killing me, here!), to say to him, the sweetest thing she has ever said to him, since, “I like you just the way you are,” back in “As I Lay Dying.”

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And here it is: “I think you’re going to be the one to save him from himself.  It won’t be because he loves me.  It will be because he loves you.”  (All together now . . . AWWWWW!)

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Aside from the fact that I think Elena is absolutely RIGHT about this (After all, at it’s core, The Vampire Diaries is a show about the unbreakable bonds of family and brotherhood, just as much as it’s a story about a girl and her love for two vampires.), it was something Damon really needed to hear.  Having always felt like he was doomed to be the brother in need of rescue, Damon has to feel truly heartened by the notion that the woman he loves believe that HE and only HE can save his brother’s humanity.

Oh, and then Damon watches Elena sleep again, which is just . . . you know  . . . AMAZING . . .

And that was “Ordinary People,” in a nutshell.  So, what did you think of the episode?  Were you satisfied by the answers you received about the Original Family?  Were you frustrated by the fact that the only other Original “child” you met, was the kid that got eaten by werewolves?  Do you think Elena is right about Damon being the key link to Stefan’s missing humanity?  And finally, how excited were you to FINALLY get an end-of-the episode Delena scene that WASN’T cockblocked by Alaric, Stefan, Katherine, etc. . .

Oh, and did I mention that next week is the mid-season finale, which means that after “Homecoming,” airs, there will be NO TVD EPISODES until January 12th?

Hiatuses are awful, aren’t they?  Here’s hoping that next week’s episode is action-packed enough to tide us over, during those interminable TVD-less weeks.  You can check out the extended American promo for “Homecoming” here:

And . . . here’s the Canadian one. (Though, admittedly, the sound quality isn’t the best.  So, turn up your speakers.)

Well, that’s all I’ve got, folks.  At least, for now .  . . But be sure to tune in next week, or someone from this show might eat you, and not in the “good way,” either.  Adios, Fangbangers!

[www.juliekushner.com] [Fangirls Forever]

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Filed under The Vampire Diaries

Unfinished Business – A Recap of The Vampire Diaries’ “Ghost World”

“Hi, is this 911?  I have an emergency.  I may have just impregnated a ghost through eye-f*&king.” 

Fangbangers, do you find yourself living hopelessly in the past . . . 2010, to be exact?

Are you still wearing your “Jeremy & Anna Forever” t-shirt to bed every night?

Do you still feel 50% cheated by that scene in “Brave New World,” where Tyler took off his shirt, like a Good Boy . . .

. . . but Mason had to wear that ugly tank top thingy?

“I prefer to call it a Bro, or a Manzierre!” 

Do you still send Damon Salvatore hate mail for whacking Lexi in “162 Candles?”

And, perhaps most importantly, are you the ONLY PERSON ON THE PLANET who actually misses the TOMB VAMPIRES?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then “Ghost World” was the episode for you . . .

(Once again, all the awards go to Screencapper Extraordinaire Andre, for all the glorious, non-gif, images you see here.)

Reunited and it feels so . . . burny.

When we last left our good friend, Damon Salvatore, a Ghost Mason Lockwood was gleefully, and invisibly, tossing him around the room, for sh*ts and giggles.

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 This week, the fun continues, as Mason ties poor Damon to a chair with silver chains, takes off his Magic Sunscreen Ring, and lets the sun shine in to La Casa de Rich and Awesome.

“I wish I could say this is the first time this has happened to me . . .” 

“You guys really need to get more creative with your torture techniques, ‘tied to a chair’ is fast becoming as cliched as The Wall Slam.”

Damon’s torture scene is a macabre homage, both to Damon’s torture and subsequent murder of Mason last season, which just so happened to occur, while the latter was strapped to the EXACT SAME CHAIR, and Caroline’s dad’s “Aversion Training” session on his daughter.

“The sun will come out, tomorrow.  Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there’ll be sunnnnnnn.” 

Of course, this time, things are just a little bit funnier, because Damon still has ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA who’s doing this to him.  Enter Ripper Stefan to take advantage of the situation, by poking, prodding and tickling his captured brother.  I mean, that’s just cold . . .

STEFAN: “This is HILARIOUS!”

DAMON: “Laugh all you want, Brother Dearest, but in about 10 minutes, someone is going to do this to YOU!” 

Though we never see it happen, we can assume that either (1) Mason got bored of playing with his new vampire toy; or (2) Stefan finally got up off his lazy bloodsucking ass to help.  Because, mere moments later, Damon is sunburn free, and cruising around Mystic Falls in his hot sports car, looking for answers . . .

“Greetings Blondie . . . Witchy”

Meanwhile, outside La Casa de Rich and Awesome, Mystic Falls is engaging in, SURPRISE, yet another town celebration.  This one is called the Night of Illumination.  I swear, the reasons for these town parties, get more ridiculous every week.  At this rate, next week, we’ll probably learn that someone from the Fell family invented toilet paper, and have a Potty Party, in his honor . . .

Speaking of the Fells’, they do seem to be the one Founding Family that gets the shortest shrift on this show, don’t they?  If Mystic Falls was Hogwarts, the Fells’ would probably be Ravenclaw.  (Oh, and just in case you were curious, the Gilberts are Gryffindor.  The Forbes are Hufflepuff.  And the Lockwoods, of course, are Slytherin.)  I only mention this, because “Ghost World,” marked our first, and last introduction to Tobias Fell, Head of the History Department, and soon-to-be winner of the Senseless Death of the Week Award . . .

R.I.P. Tobster!

Anywhoo, Tobias is waxing poetic about lamps in Mystic Falls, or some other useless crap,  while Ghost Anna is adorably mocking him.

“This guy is going to be so much more interesting, when he’s a corpse.” 

Meanwhile, Jeremy is trying his best not to look like a total freak show, while, at the same time, chatting up and holding hands with his new “Imaginary Friend.”

Alaric is standing nearby, and clearly notices something is up.

“Well, Jeremy may be nuts.  But on a lighter note, I definitely prefer his imaginary girlfriend to his real one.  This one is way less cheesy.”

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However, having been on this show for three years now, he’s long ago learned not to call attention to other people’s bizarre behaviors.  To do so, inevitably causes you to end up with a stake through your heart, burnt to a crisp, or, in the case of Tobias Fell, strung up in a tree, like a Big Ole Bloody Christmas Ornament . . .

We wish you a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Yearrrrrrr  . . . 

Speaking of freak shows, Bonnie and Caroline are having a VERY serious conversation about how Bonnie’s boyfriend might be cheating on him with the female version of Casper the Friendly Ghost.

Caroline, who has clearly watched way too may episodes of Dr. Phil and Oprah, is really pulling for Bonnie to express her anger over Jeremy’s ghostiality.  (It’s kind of like bestiality only with .  . . well, you get the idea.)

And Bonnie is angry.  But she’s also a bit humiliated.  I mean, rejection is hard to take, no matter what.  But when your competition is INVISIBLE, and lacks a PHYSICAL BODY, that’s pretty darn harsh.

Here comes Damon in his swanky convertible.  He’s driving with the top down, of course, because he CAN.   (Oh, the joy of Sunscreen Rings, and vengeful ghosts who get bored of torturing you, before the first commercial break.)

*wipes drool from computer monitor* 

Damon wants Bonnie and Caroline (but mostly Bonnie, because this is SOOOO her fault) to know that he is none too pleased about how SOMEONE’S recent spellcasting, has enabled Mason Lockwood to “break on through to the other side” (That’s a song, right?) and spit roast Damon in his own home.  “When I kill someone, they are supposed to stay dead,” explains the undead vampire, matter-of-factly.

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(Careful, Damon!  I don’t think Alaric would like that remark very much . . .)

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Speaking of people responsible for this mess, Mr. I Did Some Spell to Bring My Sister Back into this World, so She Could Try to Murder My Ex Girlfriend, Matt is listening in on this exchange, and looking more than a bit guilty.

“Uh oh, it’s Bonnie and Caroline.  Maybe if I pretend I’m a ghost, they won’t see me.” 

But when Caroline and Bonnie interrogate him as to his knowledge of the Return of All Dead Characters to This Show, Matty Boy is pretty clueless.  Of course, this is not all that surprising, considering we are talking about a guy who took nearly three years to figure out that most of his friends were no longer human . . .

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Then Bonnie’s bookbag, and her spellbook falls out, which makes me think, she should probably find a safer place to store it.

“Read ME!” 

(Hmm . . . I wonder if ancient spellbooks come in e-reader versions for your Kindle, Nook or iPad.  Witches ARE pretty tech savvy, nowadays.)  The book opens to some specific spell, that Bonnie must immediately go and chant.  It’s time for more Scary Latin Muttering . . . but no nosebleeds.

I’m starting to think Bonnie’s nosebleeds have gone the way of Damon’s occasionally becoming a crow, and Elena actually writing in her diary . . .

Speaking of diaries . . .

Oooh . . . now EVERYBODY can see DEAD PEOPLE!

Elena, Jeremy and Alaric are eating OUTSIDE the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls.  (I feel like they started shooting OUTSIDE the Mystic Grill, in the hopes that some of us would be fooled into thinking the gang is actually at another restaurant.  But us TVD fans are a wily bunch, and will not be so easily duped.)  Elena is perusing Stefan’s diary, and begging Jeremy to summon Lexi from the dead, so that she can SAVE STEFAN’S SOUL.

“Yes, I do carry around all 2,500 of your diaries, with me everywhere I go.  Do you have a problem with that?” 

It’s interesting how Elena is totally cool with bringing the dead back to Earth, if they save precious Stefan, but not if they (1) make out with Jeremy, or (2) try to roast Elena in Alaric’s car.  It doesn’t work, both ways, honey!

Then Stefan arrives, to taunt Elena about reading his diary, and to make some Damon-y jokes about eating people during the Night of Illumination.  Him and Elena then have THIS exchange, which is, more or less, a variation on the same conversation they’ve had every week, ever since Stefan became Klaus’ b*tch, back at the beginning of the season . . .

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After blowing off Elena’s suggestion,  Jeremy eventually excuses himself to the public restroom, because, apparently, this is where all the cool ghosts, like to hang out.  Of course, Anna is there waiting for him.

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VERY Dramatic Music starts playing the background.  And I’m wondering if there’s a speaker in one of the toilets.  How romantic!  Jeremy monologues about how he doesn’t know how long he’ll be able to play Ghost Whisperer with Anna, but that he simply must make out with her, before the Ghostbusters come, and turn her into a steaming pile of ectoplasm.

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The pair then make out.  It’s pretty awesome, especially because I’m a Jeremy / Anna fan.  But I’m still kind of wishing their first kiss in two years took place somewhere other than a public restroom . . . because public restrooms tend to smell like pee . . .

We then cut back to a number of scenes, in fairly quick succession.  First, there’s Bonnie and Caroline, who have returned to that All Powerful Witch Burning Site, so that Bonnie can conduct the spell her spell book suggested to her.  She starts chanting.  Fortunately,  WE get to leave, before it starts getting too annoying.  “I don’t like this,” says Caroline, when the lights start getting all flickery.

Yeah, we feel ya, Caroline.  We don’t like it either . . .

Meanwhile, INSIDE the Only Bar / Social Establishment in Mystic Falls, Damon is trying to kiss and make up with Alaric, who’s being all pouty and toddler-like.  “I don’t like you anymore,” huffs Alaric, as he sticks his tongue out at Damon, and blows him a raspberry. 🙂

ALARIC:  “Shhh . . . I’m just playing hard to get, so that he’ll want my Chunky Monkey even more.”

DAMON:  “I heard that, you know!”

ALARIC: “DOH!” 

“But remember when you did like me, and we both conspired to kill Mason Lockwood.   Well, he’s back.  And I think he’s a little pissed off,” Damon replies, offering his ex-bromantic buddy, his best version of the Eye Thing, in hopes of winning his favor.

Elsewhere, Stefan has taken a break from the Ripper / Elena comedy hour, and is off to find his car.

We’re now back in Spellville with Bonnie unfortunately.  At least, she’s finally finished chanting (THANK YOU, WRITERS!)  But here’s the weird thing.  Her GRANDMA is standing next to her . . . as in the same grandma who died casting a spell with Bonnie to open that tomb, back in Season 1.

“Are you up for a game of Ring Around the Rosie, by chance?” 

 (If I recall correctly, Grandma’s death was the plot point that first ended my “friendship” with Bonnie.  After that, she got an ugly haircut, and started hating on vampires, and literally giving Damon a headache, every chance she got.  Now that I think about it, I’m not quite sure I’m thrilled about Grandma’s return.)