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The Vampire Diaries season premiere recap: Kiss Me or Kill Me

Katherine, Stefan, Damon, and Elena sink their teeth into season 2

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Vampire Diaries Katherine
Annette Brown/The CW

The Vampire Diaries

TV Show
run date:
Nina Dobrev, Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley
The CW

The best thing about The Vampire Diaries is that nothing ever turns out the way you think it will. The story goes in a direction that’s even better. And then, you look back on the episode and you see the writers had signs pointing there all along. When Jeremy awoke from his vampire attempt (everyone knows pills are unreliable, Jeremy), Stefan warned him that Anna’s blood was leaving his system. If he tried again, he might end up dead. Cue Damon snapping his neck at episode’s end so we thought Jeremy was dead, with a 10 percent chance of being a vamp. Nope, neither. Uncle John, who had told Jeremy he would have to one day accept the responsibility of upholding the Gilberts’ vampire-hunting legacy, had given him his ring that protects the wearer from dying at the hand of someone or something supernatural. (That clarification explains why Jeremy’s dad croaked even though he was wearing it at the time of his car accident.) Elena had thought it was risky letting Damon save Caroline by feeding her some of his blood. She’ll be safe in the hospital, Damon said, and the blood will leave her system in a day. It never occurred to me that the hour would end with Katherine smothering Caroline with a pillow (karma for Caroline using her second lease on life to watch Jersey Shore?) so she’d deliver a message to the Salvatore Brothers, ”Game on.” But it should have: Bonnie had complained to Katherine (who she thought was Elena) about Damon thinking he was a hero for healing Caroline. It’s a pity everyone can’t just shut up — then we’d have no show — because they all revealed things to Katherine that she was able to use against them. Well, except Elena, who has yet to come face-to-face with her. Let’s back up.

Elena called the paramedics, who saved John. She thought it was a tomb vampire who’d attacked him and creepily stalked her in her home until Damon figured out it was Katherine after Elena denied remembering their kiss and a conversation with Aunt Jenna. But here’s the thing: As Damon would tell Elena when she worried about Katherine having a standing invitation into her house, ”Katherine wants you dead, there’s zero you can do about it. You will be dead. But you’re not, so clearly she has other plans.” Clearly Katherine could have slit John’s throat if she wanted to as opposed to stabbing him in the gut. She could have grabbed his magic ring after she chopped off his fingers. She didn’t. I don’t think we’ve seen the last of John even though he’s packed his bags.

About that: Kevin Williamson told us Stefan would turn into a bit of a badass this season, and he already has. He and Elena visited John in the hospital, hoping he’d know something about Katherine’s plan since he’d worked with Isobel who was in contact with her. John refused to confide in them, saying only that he’d never spoken to Katherine directly because she didn’t trust him and that Elena already should have staked Stefan. Elena told John his hatred would get him killed and left the room. Stefan stayed behind to flex his biceps and triceps while forcing John to drink some of his blood. Stefan said if John didn’t leave town within 24 hours, he would kill him, turn him into a vampire, and ”watch you hate yourself more than you already do.” Well played, sir. Keep the attitude. And the t-shirt.

NEXT: Something poetic