My laptop charger officially is dead, so I will try to write this as quickly as I possibly can.
You may think that an A+ is an over-grade (if that’s even a hybrid word that makes sense), but I honestly can’t think of a better episode I have watched from The Vampire Diaries ever since the midseason 3 decline. Holy crap, what an amazing episode. Or maybe it’s just the fact that I love the writers for referencing almost every gripe viewers have had with the show for about a year now. And how weird that it’s almost exactly a year to the date, to boot.
I can’t decide which is better: Elena’s Mary Sue-ness; Klaus questioning how Elena could be so forgiving about everything the Salvatores (well he only said Damon, but) have done to her; Damon telling Klaus that he’s just evil just because; Abby saying they need to stop helping Elena Gilbert; Stefan telling Damon that he’s been working the sire bond quite well; or that Bonnie told her dad that it’s basically her job to help everyone survive in Mystic Falls. Well, actually, if I had to choose, it would be the Bonnie thing, as that’s definitely been more on the radar — and for a longer period of time — than the others.
But in truth, it’s not just the referencing. I won’t lie and tell you that aspect isn’t important, because it most definitely is. The past few episodes have assured me that the writers know exactly what their show is and how it’s been handled a bit misguidedly as of late. So that’s all good and dandy, but it’s also the fact that this episode took steps to eradicate it… or some of them, at least. Elena gets her hands dirty here (even if her plans still are the worst), people continue to tell us that Elena isn’t all that great, the characters actually question how they can be in love with each other — AKA murders, the map for the cure plot twist shows up in an unexpected location given the season’s arc (classic TVD), and Klaus is given an actual reason to be a villain again. What more can you ask for going into the second half of season four? Sure, Bonnie is still aligned with Elena and is saving everyone, but damn it she got to be bad ass and it was awesome.
Also a recurring theme during the past few episodes is the 1980s, a decade in which dozens of teen-centered films about hope and romance were released. This episode, it gives us a redundant insight into Rebekah’s wants and desires as, well, a human. Rebekah is played and written so well that that aspect of her character is always quite noticeable and understandable. But what it does here is allow Stefan to understand who Rebekah is… and he realizes that his gang back at his house may get too carried away with daggering people for their own personal gain. Who’s more “good” than whom here?
Anyway, fun was had, self-referential humor was made. I call this a success! Could this episode actually be even more quotable than last week’s episode!? Good job, whoever wrote this episode! Off to the races for the cure, I suppose!