The Vampire Diaries review: Pretty little vampires

First off, I apologize for not reviewing the show last week. For the most part, I thought it was a bit forgettable, but not a bad episode in any way. Now onto this episode, which I’ll get into really quickly. This won’t be one of those hellishly long posts.

Let’s get to what this episode was kind of about: The Cure. According to my Twitter timeline, you were either one of those people that really did not see this coming, or you were one of those people who did. I seem to fall into the latter camp. And this isn’t something I’m saying to pat myself on the back, it’s just that I thought it was mostly obvious — going as far back as Klaus curing Elena from whatever it was that was going on with her and Rebekah last week. When Stefan reiterated it this week, there’s really only one reason why Klaus would want to keep Elena well: so that he can keep her blood healthy. And the only way he can use her blood was if she became human again. It was just one of those things that completely made sense, coupled with the fact that what else is really bigger than The Originals? And so when it was revealed halfway into this episode, I wasn’t exactly shocked by it. I was sort of expecting it. Your mileage may vary, however, and I’m going to assume that however you took the twist may greatly affect how you view this episode.

I have been known to over-think this show. I’ve also been discredited for liking Rebekah way too much, but I still admit that she is the best thing on this show for me right now. Kind of bummed that she was daggered tonight (which might or might not bring out people who think this show has men control women way too easily out in droves yet again). Whatever you say, I think it’s heartbreaking.

Elsewhere, Damon is trying to show Elena the ropes of being a vampire. And they decide to do that on a college campus populated by people. All that aside, the series continues to handle Elena’s internal conflict with her newfound vampirism quite well — and the way they use the triangle to prop it up is almost perfect. Yet again, this may depend on what kind of viewer you are, and I guess there’s nothing wrong with seeing both sides. Should we root for Elena to make drinking people “fun” like Damon or to steer clear of it entirely like Stefan? Point is, she has no choice. And the series, or at least Stefan, seems to think that she may be too good to go on “drinking from the vein.” The case for this is that she’s driven by things like love, and once she kills someone — and she will kill someone — she won’t be able to cope with it, thus turning off her humanity and forever being evil. In some ways, doesn’t that almost also make Elena a bit weak, that she can’t stand feeling guilty so she’ll decide to not feel it anymore? I know that the series makes a lot of references to the whole off switch, but even Stefan is able to control himself every few years at a time. Well, in any case, it works as motivation for Stefan to hold a huge secret from her and his brother that will inevitably cause a rift between all three of them at some point in the future. And I actually laud Elena for not wanting to turn into an evil being just because it’s the easier road.

“Deep down I know you’re right,” she says. But that person she could easily become, she doesn’t want to transition into. Prolonging the inevitable (Damon) or is she being strong for sticking to her guns (Stefan)? Who knows?

Now that the show has introduced The Cure, it has to actually show its cards on that one right? So I’m assuming we’ll actually get to it at some point. But will it be too late? Will Elena have veered off into the deep end? More importantly, at that time… will she even want to be with Stefan? Or be human? Or care? That’s the risk this storyline is playing with.

Vampire bites:

  • This one is of two episodes ago, but Elena’s first choice in attire at a funeral is a flirty, peach-colored dress. What?
  • Klaus gives Jeremy notes on his drawing. Ha!
  • Also, are we supposed to think that Klaus actually wants more hybrids? They are literally the weakest things. They dies so frickin’ easily. Exhibit Z: tonight’s episode. These things are a joke.
  • Rebekah and Matt. It makes no sense. BUT IT’S SO RIGHT.
  • Connor is a thing, apparently. Um, okay.
  • Was kind of hoping that Rebekah and Stefan would turn it around on Klaus, but that didn’t happen. Though I guess I also am okay with the idea of Stefan and Klaus working together and again, and Stefan harboring that secret away from the others.
  • Was it Halloween this episode? And if it was, does that mean that season 3 happened in the span of one month? And if it wasn’t, who has a costume party on a night that’s not Halloween?
Tags: | Categories: Recaps
About the author: Michael Collado
Michael Collado
Mike's a television junkie located in Miami, where he spends all of his time watching TV with his best friends couch and cable access.

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  • Crystal

    **WARNING:SLIGHT SPOILER FOR THE BOOKS!!!***

    ****I have to say that I saw the cure subject tonight coming because of the books. The cure is a subject for (I believe) the fourth book and I’m hoping they continue with it like L.J. Smith did. I won’t say anything else because I don’t want to ruin the books for people who haven’t read them but I will say that if the writers DO include L.J.’s story arc with a certain character, it will be quite hilarious.***********

    K, with that out of the way, I’m really enjoying this season so far. The twists, the conflict with Elena’s transformation and relating that to the ( I thought played out) triangle. They’ve made that triangle fresh again but I do hope that it doesn’t go on for that much longer. When Connor was first introduced I have to admit I sighed. Like “another ‘ultimate’ vampire hunter?” sigh. But this whole “One of the five” subject has me immensely intrigued. And it may be morbid but I thought it was really kick ass how he tore that hybrids head off with the chain!!

    I’ll just say that last season was a yawn for me. Or I should say the first half of the season. The later episodes were great and the finale was one of the best season finale’s I’ve ever seen. Seasons 1 and 2 were fast paced and you just never knew what was going to happen or who was going to die. I get that feeling with this season. Like TVD has some of its magic back. And it’s nice that they’re throwing more “human” related conflicts into the mix (Like the HUGE possibility that Tyler cheated on Caroline as well as the new pastor’s daughter character). I alternate between feeling for Rebecca and then hating her but I hope they don’t keep her daggered for the rest of the season. Claire Holt just brings such sensitivity to that character and it’s a pleasure to watch. (One thing I hope they get rid of: the cheesy moments. Like when Elena did a keg stand to “show Rebecca up” last episode. I had to turn away from the t.v. in embarrassment!)

    Anyway, I just hope they keep the steam going because I was worried there last year. Between the thousands of breaks they kept taking and the pretty weak storylines they were pushing out, I was afraid my favorite show had survived its sophomore slump but had a “junior” slump instead.

    P.s.: I LOVE your long posts!! This is the first place I come after watching a TVD episode :)

    • Epicknot

      Thanks for the warning more people should give it!

  • Eric Pharand

    Boring and ridiculous

  • http://twitter.com/deniseechang Denise Chang

    I think you give Elena and Stefan way too much credit!!! Stefan has thought of Elena as not a bit weak but flat out helpless from the very beginning. It’s true sometimes him and Damon struggle on what’s best for her; to protect or not to protect? It’s actually so contradicting. If Stefan “respects” her choices more than he claims Damon to, he really needs to stop that “I don’t think she’ll be able to handle it” crap. Elena was especially annoying this episode. The last couple of weeks she’s been struggling with her evil side (I guess) and it was nice to see her off that pedestal but she really needs to freaking make up her mind. She can’t want to be a vampire (e.g. her accepting she needs to drink from the vein)…and then not want to be one when she’s finally being one. I fully support her accepting Damon’s advice. Damon’s right when he says she needs to embrace the fact that she has changed. Or what? The other choice is obvious, be miserable as hell like Stefan.

    As for The Cure…I was REALLY hoping this wouldn’t come so soon because now I know they’re going to drag this out (well, hopefully) so that Elena can be a vampire for a little longer. I wouldn’t mind seeing Elena turn off her humanity for a couple of episodes before returning, I kind of miss Katherine’s character, which kind of appeared tonight. Anyway, Rebekha’s character bores me to tears and I think Klaus’ lines tonight spoke to a lot of viewers. C’mon, she gives things away WAY too easily and all a guy needs to do is tell her she’s pretty. Ugh!

    I knew that professor guy or whoever was evil from the beginning and lo and behold – evil. I’m curious to see what his role is and what he has to do with the hunter and the five….in other news, the hunter really pisses me off. Like what the heck, I thought hybrids were stronger than that. Definitely wanted more Tyler, his new girl, and Caroline drama tonight.

  • Pellinore

    The way I see it the relationship between Rebekah and Klaus is quite abusive. It actually reminds me of my friend and her boyfriend. Outside of the limitations to the writing, Rebekah can’t escape the draw to Klaus. I mean, their entire family is like a bunch of islands. Very separate, so I don’t feel she could really just live and go off with her other brothers. Elijah, as alluring as he is I don’t see him as some great defender of his siblings, esp with regards to Rebekah who has dealt with Klaus physically, mentally, and emotionally abusing her for centuries. It’s really sad that this is all she is b/c nobody cares. It’s really like how some people have to deal with abuse.

    When there is no one to defend you, no system to support you, you just keep coming back. In fact regarding IRL stats for abusive relationships with men and women, women are known to go back anywhere from four to seven times. So I understand better where Rebekah is coming from. Her take on being a vampire is very diff and interesting but also brutally real and painful. And to Stefan there, stopping her from escaping . . . I’ve never liked him or Damon but I just see him as enabling. He’s never been good.

    I didn’t buy Elena’s explanation for why Caroline was somehow inadequate to teach her how to be a vampire. I think that Elena just wants to experience the good and bad without judgement. And that’s a bit of privilege, considering that for regular humans there should be some law or moral obligation to prevent you from harming people.

    According to Damon it is within a vampire’s nature to hunt, to be a predator. But somehow Caroline, who perhaps is a little Mary-Sued, is too good at being able to control herself. I don’t see how having control means that you don’t understand struggle. I’m pretty sure Caroline struggles, it’s just not an important aspect of her character. She herself has killed, has fed without constraint. But I guess it depends on personality. She even said she was a control freak prior to being a vampire, so maybe that has something to do with the fact that she can better communicate who she is as a person. So with this in mind, I don’t think it is just within a vampire’s nature to hunt and be without restraint, as Damon puts it. B/c then how do you explain Caroline, who supposedly does not struggle according to Elena? I just see a bunch of contradictions.

    And Stefan can just have so many seats. I don’t like him trying to dictate Elena’s experience anymore than Damon. But it’s esp annoying how he infantilzes her and renders her weak. He just needs to let her live and experience things. He’s so patronizing, just like Damon. They both think they know but Elena is her own person independent from them. Her story is not for them to write. And even though I haven’t a clue who Elena really is I’m just annoyed by how much these two try to be everything in her life. I don’t even think Elena would have a compelling reason to be bad or good, I just don’t know her.

    I really hope the writers don’t forsake her relationships with her friends b/c that is what strengthens Elena’s character in my eyes. She is not just a segment of a love triangle, she is a character and we need to see more of that.

    The last scene between Damon and Elena was okay. At least Damon can see that Elena isn’t him. Maybe she was looking for validation, as in him saying that it’s okay for her not to be like him. That there’s more than one way to be a vampire. But she may have to discover for herself what that way entails.

    I’m excited to see more of Connor. It’s been a while since we’ve had a somewhat competent and compelling villain-type character. Also I don’t think that hybrids are necessarily a joke. It’s just that when you’re a baby supe you can be quite easy to kill. You can get cocky. I dunno. *shrug*

    • Annabelle

      Word to your point about the Klaus/Rebekah relationship being abusive. It’s completely disgusting how every time she does something he doesn’t like his response is to dagger her and lock her in a box. If this is how he treats his sister I can only imagine how abusive he would be towards a girlfriend (if he ever manages to land one – which is doubtful).

  • http://www.facebook.com/rosanna.tufts Rosanna E Tufts

    Anybody else catch the little shout-out to “Fifty Shades of Grey?” (Stefan’s arch crack about Klaus’s “Red Room of Pain.”) My daughter wondered why I was giggling.

  • cacherr1

    Where Damon’s logic failed for me is at the end of the day, Damon who claims to revel in it still hates himself like Stefan…so his point fell flat to me as I think like Elena was doing to Damon last season, he wants a Katherine 2.0. This episode also proved to me that DE really can only exist in an isolated universe which at the end of the day are not good relationships to be in (which why I never liked Dair as a couple in GG).

    I also thought the explanation for why Caroline was not good teacher was weak too. I am also still wondering how all sudden dopplerganger’s can not drink from blood bags. I don’t know this way of keeping the triangle going working because there is too much re-writing and snowflaking Elena as vampire going. It also doesn’t work because the only people who seem to have issues with controlling themselves is the Salvatores.
    Bonnie had every right to be upset as I really could have saw Elena killing someone and then being a wreck. let’s just say Elena is like drunk girl who ends up crying at the end and spoiling the fun…so yes in Bonnie’s place, I would be bitching at Damon for ultimately making Bonnie really have to coming in to babysit because at the end of the day those two dumbasses didn’t need to go with her and done that shit elsewhere.

    • Pellinore

      I do think Damon has yet to accept Elena as a separate and independent entity. I was expecting him to validate Elena in the final scene, but maybe he just can’t b/c he’s too busy projecting onto her like his brother. Unsurprising considering who he is.

      And yeah, Salvatores have major control issues but Caroline doesn’t. So I also don’t buy the argument of what is naturally within a vampire’s nature. It suggests that they as a “society” are incapable of change. It works within their favor to fabricate this myth of what it means to be a vampire, so they are considered fearsome and incorrigible. But there are just contradictions to this narrative.

      I’m hoping the cure is a myth b/c otherwise it cheapens the experience of being a vampire. And it just yet again cheapens any supposed threat to Elena’s existence and way of life. There’s no permanence or urgency.

      And yeah, it was funny that a trip for Bonnie was mostly about Elena and Damon. It reminds me of the story arc about her reuniting with her mom which then later became mostly about Elena and the Salvatores. They have this uncanny ability of occupying most of the story space even when it isn’t completely necessary. And they really couldn’t differentiate a college party from a high school party. They could have just attended a similar function in town and just kept Bonnie in the plot box for another episode.

      I’m going to try to withhold judgement on Connor until the end but I feel he’s been receiving somewhat better treatment than Bonnie’s character for the time being. But it could turn out he’s somewhat of a plot device and he will also suffer a horrible death. I hope not. I hope he can just be peacefully written out of the show. But if he dies I hope he goes out with a bang. His cause is reminding me of what Bonnie should be doing as a proper witch, but lately writing staff don’t really allow her to judge all that much b/c it would be oppositional to some of the main cast. But that kind of conflict would be good, it would be believable instead of people just being okay with everything.

      Perhaps that’s why they limit Elena’s contact with Caroline b/c she’s a decent vampire and Elena choosing b/t Stefan and Damon wouldn’t make much sense with her around. I just think Elena is being obtuse and ignorant if she thinks that Caroline wouldn’t understand and that she hasn’t suffered. I think it just comes down to there being more than one way to be a vampire. But if you want to be the Damon type you shouldn’t expect to go unpunished for causing destruction. That’s just too privileged a mindset to have.

    • QMargo

      I agree about DE only being able to exist in some weird isolated universe because from what I saw Elena WAS enjoying herself BUT the moment she saw Bonnie – she felt this was wrong…I would also add shame. Cos look, Elena could walk out of that room and tell Bonnie – hey, I can’t help it, but I enjoy this and this is who I am now…with Damon. But Elena felt bad, she felt shame, which means that inside she does not want this – like she said. Actually the first thought I had when Elena said “I want more” she sounded like Katherine and when Damon smiled, it looked like he got his long over due wish to hang out with Katherine like that – feeding of other people while nothing else around them exists o matters.

      As for Caroline – total bull, Caroline would be a great teacher, and she would not let Elena have it easy, but because Elena is such a baby she would not be able to handle it. At least Caroline could teach her how to dress properly.

  • lala

    I really believe that the cure is just another “myth” like the curse of the sun and the moon, that the hunter made it up and lie to rebecka to had her help him, or something! At least I hope so, cause I really dont like the idea of vampires turning into humans… And as someone already mentioned, if they cure vampirism then they get dead humans!! cause first you die and then you turn!
    Oh, and maybe I didnt get it from the previous seasons but couldnt the original walk in the sun without rings?? Isnt it waht elijah said in season 2 when he explain the curse to elena?
    I love the party part!!! elena and damon having fun together!!! Boo to boonie!! he he!

    • cacherr1

      Yeah Elijah did say that the sun don’t affect them but the writers forgot that when they wrote the flashback in season 3 where all sudden the sun burned them. THIS SHOW! Like seriously someone needs a new script supervisor because that is fucking ridiculous.

      • QMargo

        I just can’t with the “logic” on this show

    • http://www.facebook.com/scott.l.davis1 Scott Lloyd Davis

      And if there really is a cure, why didn’t the first hunters use it on vampires in the first place? It would have made sense for the hunter that Rebekah was with to want to cure her. Sounds like a trap.

      • Pellinore

        I agree. Too many unanswered questions. Something just smells fishy.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001612393147 Lucas Oliveira

    This one is of two episodes ago, but Elena’s first choice in attire at a funeral is a flirty, peach-colored dress. What? LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLO SO TRUE CAN’T STOP LAUGHING.

    Was it Halloween this episode? And if it was, does that mean that season 3 happened in the span of one month? And if it wasn’t, who has a costume party on a night that’s not Halloween? Thought the exact same thing. And it truly believe it was halloween, since rumor has it a Christmas episode is coming. Anyway, if whole season 3 happened in the span of one month, that’s ridiculous. I mean, BEST MONTH EVER. I envy those guys.

    lso, are we supposed to think that Klaus actually wants more hybrids? They are literally the weakest things. They dies so frickin’ easily. Exhibit Z: tonight’s episode. These things are a joke. I couldn’t agree more. I think Klaus wants hybrids just to have whatever he wants it when he wants it. He can’t be preparing himself for another war, and if he does, he is going really bad at picking his weapons.

    But in any case, last week, what got Elena and Rebekah down was vampire poison that Connor jacked out of Tyler Lockwood. Anyway, imo, the cure is the most important thing the show has released upon us since the sun and the moon/klaus’ curse. And for that, I’m pretty excited and I was really happy with this new plotline. Great episode, as always, and great review, as always…

  • QMargo

    I don’t know, the timeline on this show is ridiculous…just like the episode recap voiced by all the characters in the beginning…especially when JoMo said “Now there is a vampire hunter out to get us”…LOL, does the show think we are that slow we need to be reminded like that, I mean what’s next “Now we are all waiting for pizza to be delivered at our houses – dun dun dunn!” Or that whole college visiting thing – can someone explain why all three of them needed to be there? Couldn’t the professor just mail all Grams stuff to Bonnie? Why did Damon have to drive them? Where was Caroline this episode? Why did Elena dress up like a slut to go to that party?

    Anyway, yeah, I am one of those who saw the whole “cure” thing coming, because there would not be any other reason as to why Klaus would save her in the previous episode.

    The Alexander dude was great fun though – almost like Jacob in the first Twilight movie – long hair and muscles…

    Srsly, the only good part of that episode was Elijah. Miss him!

    • katherine_fan

      Damon was dressed as Jack the ripper,so Elena and Bonnie were dressed as his prostitute victims.Bonnie’s scar though was terrible.After all this time she’s spent around vamps,she still doesn’t know how a slashed throat looks like??UGH!I didn’t mind the new voiceover the first time I heard it,but now it’s ridiculous.Bring shirtless Stefan back!

      • cacherr1

        i don’t recall a vampire actually slashing someone’s throat. they bite people or just pull out hearts, stab, or break necks. but slashing not so much.

        • katherine_fan

          It was a joke!To be honest,when I said vamps I meant murderers (she spent time with Alaric and slashed throats were his thing).And even if that wasn’t the case,she does know what a slashed throat means,doesn’t she??

          • cacherr1

            I don’t remember her really being involve with Alaric but yes the make-up department failed imo with both girls wounds.

      • QMargo

        The first time it was ok, like yeah, I get that they wanted to send this message across that this is how things have changed over the past 3 seasons…but now its just ughhh. Yeah, as much as shirtless Stefan can be exciting, I still prefer my men in suits! Exibit A – Elijah!

  • Eric Pharand

    @QMargo:disqus @Pellinore:disqus @517de915efaf5e5aaf29b19762e672ee:disqus I think Elena thinks that Caroline can’t help because Caroline never learned to feed directly without losing control/killing the person. Caroline doesn’t need to because she has basic control and is satisfied with bags. If Elena could drink from a bag regularly and had basic control then she wouldn’t need to learn from Damon. Basically, Elena’s struggles are contrived to appeal to fans who like the triangle.

    • Pellinore

      I see. That’s what I thought. They just fabricate struggles to support the triangle.

    • QMargo

      I just think Elena does not want to hear judgement, and that is why she tuns to Damon for help, because his response to this is – don’t be shy of this, who cares what everyone else thinks, just enjoy who you are right now. Notice how she didn’t even give her blood to treat those on whome she fed….she just said “don’t scream, this won’t hurt” and then moved onto the next one. But how can this possibly appeal (and I get that THAT is the idea) to DES fans, because if that whole scene with DE dancing and feeding even with Bonnie interrupting them, ended up with Elena admitting to herself that this is whom she is becomin and enjoying herself – then I could believe that this has some appeal because DE would have something to stand on finally. But the way they made it look like is Elena feeling shame about all of this thus making DE sound unrealistic again because how she is denying it. Poor fans, they must have a lot of faith in this pseudo triangle.

  • Lavender

    One question: why didn’t elena compel that rapist college guy NOT to roofie girls at parties ???

    • Pellinore

      I was wondering about that. I mean you have the ability to compel people, why not remove their ability to commit evil deeds?

    • Eric Pharand

      Good point

    • Eric Pharand

      Good point

    • Eric Pharand

      Good point

    • http://twitter.com/xxviolentkisxx Glenna Mercado

      because elena has no brains as usual

  • anna

    You are SO RIGHT about Rebekah! I actually cried when the daggered her. I mean, why do the writers keep making people betray her? It’s such a sad, tragic character, and I hope at some point we’ll actually get to see her be loved by someone.

  • Kl LK

    Alexander was disappointing, especially if he doesn’t show up in the present day. The cure story line has some potential and opens a lot of questions: Would curing an original cure their whole bloodline? If a cured original died would their bloodline die? If klaus or a hybrid is cured would he become a regular werewolf?

  • http://www.facebook.com/barbara.schuch.3 Barbara Schuch

    Honestly, it’s enough with the whining behaviour of Elena. She has fun with Damon and then … bam … Miss Guilty Conscience Bonnie happens (again). Elena tells Stefan proud that she has learnd to feed herself without killing – the next moment she’s driven by guilt and Stefan doesn’t respond properly? Come on writers, stop this mess, I really can’t stand this any longer!

  • Sanders

    Here’s an awesome twist: Klauss finds the cure and keeps it for himself. He needs doppleganger blood so he turns Katherine (and only Katherine) back because she screwed him :) This must happen.

    • QMargo

      You know what, thats actually an interesting thought…Why the need to turn back Elema when Katherine is still running around? Also if he could turn them both back human, could that work out? Like hey, I hanging out with my grand-grand-grand-grand-grand-grand-grand-grand-grand mother!