The Vampire Diaries recap: The Last Day
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Sleeping shirtless was the only thing Damon did right in this episode. I never thought we'd be going into next week's sacrifice ritual with Elena having vampire blood in her system, Aunt Jenna being in transition, and Damon suffering from a werewolf bite. Let's break it down.
So unfortunately, Damon put on a shirt before he came downstairs to argue with Stefan, Elena, and Elijah about why they were letting Klaus go through with the ritual. For those viewers who've forgotten: Elijah says Klaus will be at his weakest during his transition into the vampire-werewolf hybrid, which means Bonnie can kill him without killing herself. ("I'll write her a great eulogy," Damon pleaded. I wish we'd gotten the first line of it.) Elijah detailed the plan: Klaus has the moonstone and a witch who can channel the power of the full moon to release the spell that's bound within the stone. [Cut to Klaus looking good in red and still cozy with Greta.] After that, Klaus, being both vampire and werewolf, will sacrifice one of each. Then, he must drink the blood of the doppelgänger until she dies. That's where Elijah comes in: He still has the elixir he had developed for Katerina 500 years ago. It has mystical properties that should resuscitate her. Damon wasn't leaving Elena's fate up to a "magical witch potion with no expiration date." He wanted to know why she couldn't just wear John's ring: The doppelgänger, Elijah said, is a supernatural occurrence, so it probably wouldn't work on her. (It's a little more of a reach than Bonnie's witch out, but fine.) If the elixir didn't work? "Then I guess I will just be dead," Elena said. Damon couldn't understand why Stefan wasn't trying to change Elena's mind, and Stefan told him he was trusting Elena's instincts to trust Elijah because she'd been a good judge of character choosing to trust the Salvatores. Elijah was at least honest with Elena: There was a chance the elixir wouldn't work, he said. (There wasn't enough to test it on someone, somewhere?)
Alaric — who remembers nothing he did when his body was possessed by Klaus — came to Elena's newly acquired mansion, and we found out that Jenna is a natural with a crossbow. Alaric had to prove it was really him by revealing that the first night he and Jenna spent together, Jeremy walked in right when he was — okay, that's enough, Jenna believed him. I know one question I'll be asking exec producer Julie Plec the next time I speak to her: "How did that sentence end?" Klaus had left Alaric go to deliver a message: The sacrifice would happen that night. That meant Klaus had to nab his werewolf. I figured Mrs. Lockwood would be used to lure Tyler back to town, but having her call him to say she'd been hospitalized in an accident before Man Witch Maddox propelled her off the second floor of her home, into the staircase railing, and then onto the floor was particularly twisted. It wasn't that high of a drop, but it looked violent. Her surviving was almost as likely as Ali Larter surviving her fall in Obsessed. (If you haven't seen that fight scene with Beyoncé, which I'm 99.9 percent sure I've referenced before in a Vampire Diaries recap, do it now!) But, survive Mama Lockwood did. She came to in the hospital and Tyler was there — that was quick! — looking as cute as ever in a new brown leather jacket. (Earth tones, you see, are for werewolves, while cool tones such as black, gray, and blue are for vamps. I learned that from the costume designer for The Twilight Saga: New Moon.)
NEXT: Damon sets major events in motion.
Jules showed up at the hospital because she wanted to make sure she and Tyler were locked up before the full moon. Leaving the hospital, they ran into Caroline, who was coming to check on Mrs. Lockwood. (Teens are so mature these days!) Jules let them have a moment alone, which was long enough for Greta and Maddox to incapacitate them. Boom. Klaus had his werewolf and vampire. Lucky for Caroline, she'd gone by the Grill earlier and told Matt she'd be back to have lunch with him. I'm glad Matt acknowledged that he's acting his butt off in front of her. He told Sheriff Forbes that he sees the same Caroline, but she told him Caroline was acting, too — she's a monster with no soul or humanity, just like Damon, who'd killed his sister. Matt wanted to know why the sheriff hadn't made a move if she was so sure Caroline was evil, and she said it was because, in spite of all she just said, she sees the old Caroline, too. Matt told her to focus on Damon, not Caroline, and the sheriff made it sound like she was ending their undercover op because Matt had gone soft. Matt called to presumably come clean to Caroline and warn her that her mom could be making a move against her, but she didn't answer her cell. So I guess that's when Matt decided to tail Damon, who'd shown up at the Grill to drink after possibly changing the series FOREVER?
When Julie Plec told EW that the season 2 finale would tell viewers a lot of things would be changing in season 3, I never thought one of those things could be Elena becoming a vampire. Do you think that will actually happen? BOOK SPOILER (skip a sentence): It happens at some point in the novels, but I say not now in the show, not after Elena's teary heart-to-heart with Stefan. Then again, I'm always wrong, so yes, she'll be drinking blood in season 3. But let's back up. Still at her (non) safe house that morning, Elena went upstairs alone to explain to Damon why she needed him to trust her and grasped his hand suggestively. It's her life, her choice, she said. "I can't lose you," he said. "You won't," she said. Ah. Sweet breakthrough, we thought. WRONG! Elena went to leave and Damon supersped around to block her. There is another way than trusting Elijah, he insisted, and he bit his wrist and forced her to drink from it. Now if she dies in the ritual as planned, she'll come back in transition to becoming a vampire. Shockingly, there is no profanity scribbled in my notes here. I must have been in shock and/or denial.
Stefan finally came upstairs and separated Elena and Damon, but it was too late. Stefan wanted to know how Damon of all people — the brother Stefan had essentially forced to become a vampire so he wouldn't be alone — could take away that choice from Elena. "Go ahead. Wish me an eternity of misery," Damon told Elena, echoing his feelings about Stefan in 1864. "Believe me, you'll get over it." And with that [this calls for my Oprah voice] Salv-a-tore fistfight! Cue the growling and the massacre of a lamp so that Damon could stab Stefan in the gut with the wooden base. Downstairs, Elijah told Damon he'd rendered the elixir useless and Elena would never forgive him. That was the last we saw of Elijah. He must have gone suit shopping.
As Jenna and Alaric kissed and made up — I hope they made good use of one of those spare bedrooms, don't you? — and Stefan convinced Elena to spend the day with him outside the safe house, Damon headed to the Grill to think/drink. He knew he'd effed up. Klaus showed up to remind Damon not to do anything he'd regret, and I'm sure 95 percent of viewers were laughing in unison with Damon. He already had. He asked Klaus if he'd consider postponing the ritual for a month. Klaus said he had his wolf and his vampire, so Damon could suck it (paraphrasing), and if Damon wants to live, he wouldn't screw it up. But Klaus had given Damon an idea: If he could take Klaus' werewolf out of the equation, he'd buy Elena a month during which she hopefully would not drink vampire blood, and then she'd forgive him. Alaric pointed out to Damon that in this scenario, Damon ends up dead, and I like that the writers didn't make a big deal out of Damon obviously being okay with that if it meant Elena lived. (Caring is a vampire's weakness.) Alaric offered to help…which meant inviting Damon into his apartment so Damon could get info out of Katherine.
NEXT: Matt is a badass.
So I guess while Matt waited outside Alaric's apartment in his car (where he keeps a shotgun loaded with wooden bullets?), Damon went inside and gave Katherine something to do other than find empty blood bags in Alaric's fridge. Is that what Klaus has been doing to her? Slowly starving her? I doubt it. The woman still looks good. Damon asked Katherine where Klaus was keeping his wolf. Katherine tried to tell Damon that Klaus would kill everyone Damon ever met if he tries to stop the ritual, and Damon tried to point out that he was buying Katherine another month to live. Katherine shared with him the fact that SHE wasn't the vampire in Klaus' plan — he had Caroline along with Tyler. Damon told Katherine about Elena having vampire blood in her system, so if she dies and becomes a vampire, that means Katherine spends eternity fighting Elena for Stefan's love. Does the fact that Katherine then told Damon the captives were in the tomb confirm she really loves Stefan or just that she wants Damon to think she does?
Conveniently, the witches had chained Caroline and Tyler to opposite walls so they could sit and face each other. I was hoping someone had found the time to clue Caroline in on the real curse, and they had. Later we saw their heart-to-heart (which would quickly become overshadowed by Stefan and Elena's). Caroline wanted to know why Tyler left her, and he said he knew she hated him, and he thought she deserved someone better than him in her life. She said she was hurt when he turned his back on her in the vampire/werewolf showdown that feels like forever ago, but that she could never hate him. She had to get that out so we'd know why she refused to leave Tyler chained up when Damon came to rescue her. I guess Damon's original plan was to kill whatever wolf Klaus had as opposed to freeing it? Damon told Tyler not to make him regret it. Well…. (Caring is a vampire's weakness.)
Leaving the tomb, they intended to take Tyler to the Lockwood cellar so he could lock himself up. They had to pause to pick up Matt, literally. Damon had knocked Matt out after Matt shot Maddox in the back as the witch tried to stop Damon from getting to "the blond one" and the wolf. When the camera panned back to reveal that the bullet had come from Matt's shotgun, there was profanity scribbled in my notes: "Holy s— motherf—in' balls" — which is also what I shouted. That was awesome. Damon finished Maddox off by snapping his neck, and after clocking Matt (and telling Matt he was lucky Damon had already screwed up once that day or he'd be dead), Damon emptied the gun of bullets and saw that they were wooden. Damon told Caroline that Matt was packing them, but she didn't have time to ask Matt about them. When he came to post-tomb break, the full moon was in the sky, and Tyler started transforming…
NEXT: Twilight and True Blood references
Now would be a good time to catch up with Elena and Stefan. Since they presumed it was her last day as a human, Stefan wanted to take Elena to see a waterfall (pretty) and hike a hill (blah, exercise). He wanted to get her far enough away from the drama of her present so she could cry over her future. On the walk, she asked Stefan about the best and worst parts of being a vampire. They were essentially the same — everything you feel is heightened. You love more powerfully (pro), but your anger becomes rage, and the despair, grief, and loss you feel when sad is enough to cripple you (con). It's why so many vampires (cough, Damon) turn off their emotions because the pain is too overwhelming and the good doesn't seem worth the bad. Stefan said he's still trying to handle both.
After Stefan bragged that he's climbed Mount Everest (add that to the short list of things we know about him!), Elena asked why he never brought up the idea of her becoming a vampire when he admitted the thought had occurred to him. He told her it was because it would be selfish of him to ask her to become a vamp, even though if it were up to him, he'd spend forever with her. Stefan told Elena that Damon did what he did because he loves her, and Elena told Stefan that by doing that, Damon only proved he knows nothing about love. Not that she's an expert on the subject at 17. She knows she loves Stefan, but she hadn't made decisions about their future. "I was supposed to grow up, decide if I want to have kids and start a family, grow old," she said, crying. "I was supposed to have a lifetime of those choices. And now, it's all gone." Stefan told her to say what she was afraid would hurt him. "I don't want to be a vampire, Stefan," she said. "I never wanted to be one." Stefan said he already knew that, and it was okay. He hugged her, and I had two thoughts: The way Elena and Stefan were backlit by the sun reminded me of the ending of the Keira Knightley Pride & Prejudice, only this was sunset and not sunrise. And take that Bella Swan! I have no idea what Elena is like in the Vampire Diaries books, but the Elena on the show is such a better role model than Bella. (Fightin' words, I know.)
When Elena and Stefan got back home, Stefan opened her car door for her (as naturally he would) and turned to see Klaus standing there. He'd been worried they'd done something stupid like make a run for it. Stefan stepped in front of Elena, but Elena and Klaus both agreed there was no reason for Stefan to die that night as well. It was nice of Klaus to not rush their goodbye makeout session like Eric did Bill and Sookie's that time on True Blood when he was taking Bill to see the Magister. They each said "I love you," and then Elena told Stefan, "Close your eyes. Close your eyes." I'm guessing I wasn't the only one flashing back to Buffy sending Angel to a hell dimension. Watching Elena leave with Klaus would have been the equivalent of hell for Stefan.
If Damon and Stefan had been talking to each other throughout the day, and Stefan would have known that Damon had busted out Caroline and Tyler, would it have mattered? I still think Elena would have wanted to go with Klaus rather than risk his wrath. When Stefan finally called Damon, Damon told Stefan to tell Elena to stay put. Stefan told Damon it was too late, Klaus had her. Damon said he'd take care of it, which meant going to see Klaus so he could tell him his wolf and vampire were AWOL. Does anyone think Klaus would let Elena out of his sight for that month if he had to postpone the sacrifice? Letting her roam free under Salvatore protection was Elijah's MO, not Klaus'.
NEXT: Damon and Jenna are tied for whose life sucks more.
Before Damon got to Klaus, he had another problem to deal with — Tyler's transformation wasn't taking as long as it did the first time. Damon wrestled with a snap-happy Tyler and said he was okay. He told Caroline and Matt to run to the cellar. If it was built to keep Tyler in, it could keep him out. Running for their lives and then facing down pretty wolf Tyler through the bars still didn't give Caroline time to ask Matt what he was doing with wooden bullets. Fair enough. Damon sped off to Alaric's place to see Klaus.
Klaus had arrived home and asked Katherine where Maddox was. He should have been back by now. Frankly, that feels like a waste of Maddox's time since he was already in the woods and would be heading back out there for the sacrifice, but Klaus must have wanted to carpool. Klaus told Katherine he'd sent Elena ahead with Greta and sat down to enjoy his remote viewing of Jules' full moon transformation. In popped Damon, and you may have been thinking Katherine was doomed because of that, but remember: Klaus would know it was Alaric who had to invite Damon in. Damon told Klaus he had to postpone the sacrifice — he'd rescued the werewolf and vampire and killed his witch. He told Klaus he could kill him for it, he did it all on his own. Klaus asked Katherine to give the boys a moment and then stood toe-to-toe with Damon: He knew about Damon, "the crazy impulsive vampire in love with his brother's girl." For a moment, I thought that was amusement and affection in his voice, as if he was going to say he could use a vamp like Damon on his side. But no. "I knew one of you would try to stop me," Klaus said. "It was just a 50-50 guess on who." He showed Damon Jules transforming. "The nice thing about werewolves is they tend to travel in packs," Klaus said. Of course Klaus would have a backup plan (after 1,000 years of waiting) that involved a backup wolf, a backup witch, and — say it with us, Damon — a backup vampire. Klaus went in to bite Damon as we cut to commercial.
Damon came to with help from Katherine and a blood bag. Katherine apologized and said she had to do it — Klaus made her make a call to lure "her" out because he needed another vampire. Who? It wasn't Caroline. Rose and Lexi are dead. What other female vamps have we met? We cut to Elena and Greta walking through the woods. Greta remained completely unlikable this episode. When Elena told her that Luka and Jonas had been searching for her, she said she wasn't lost. Elena complained about not being able to see in the dark, and Greta lit a bunch of fires in the forest to light their way. Some servant of nature. We saw a female body lying on the ground. It was Jenna. Elena ran to her, and she had no pulse. Then Jenna popped up. Elena had thought she was dead. No, Greta said gleefully, she's in transition. WHAT?! Remember how last week I said Sara Canning hadn't been given a juicy enough story line yet for producers to kill her off? Well, this may be it. Will they make Jenna feed off Elena to become a vampire? (Ewww.) If you've seen the extended promo, SPOILER ALERT, you see someone putting a flower down on a fresh grave near a Gilbert headstone. Either Jenna dies (too obvious?), or perhaps Uncle John gets himself killed upon his return. (Where has that man been?!)
Damon asked what we were all asking: Why didn't Klaus just use him? Katherine told Damon that Klaus had said Damon was as good as dead. Damon didn't know what that meant until he looked at his arm. Werewolf. Bite! WHAT?! So not only do we have Aunt Jenna turning into a vampire, as Alaric's wife Isobel had, but now we've got Damon getting a werewolf bite, as his lover Rose had. Oh, and it's from Tyler, whose werewolf uncle Damon killed. Poetry! Do you think Damon will tell anyone about the werewolf bite right away? I don't think so. Feels like that will have to be a big reveal at the end of next week, or in the season finale when he starts losing his mind at Mystic Falls' Gone With the Wind movie night. (Sigh. I miss Stars Hollow.)
We have a lot of questions that need to get answered in the season's final two episodes, but here are two big ones for me: Is Klaus regularly torturing Katherine in that apartment? I know her physical wounds would heal, but she should be more emotionally scarred if that's the case. I don't think he is. I've yet to see Klaus be as brutal as we're told he's supposed to be, but Joseph Morgan has assured EW that after next week's episode, we will regard Klaus as "the biggest villain ever to grace Mystic Falls." And why didn't Klaus just take Katherine as his starting or backup vamp if he's not torturing her? Is it simply because he wants to wait to end her until he's a hybrid so he'll be at his cruelest? Is he waiting until he becomes a hybrid and he finds his half brother Elijah so he can kill Katherine in front of him since he knows Elijah once cared for her? (Cruel.) Or had Klaus figured out that Katherine was on vervain because she hadn't told him about Damon being invited into the apartment by Alaric when he asked her what she'd been doing earlier in the episode besides making coffee? Taking her when she had free will would therefore be too risky. I thought Klaus' dormant werewolf nose might have sniffed out Damon (the man loves his soaps), and that's why he'd made Katherine take off her bracelet that allows her to walk in the sun and asked her to walk over to the window and stand in the rays. He needed to see if she was still able to be compelled. He believed she was because she'd made herself burn, and he'd given her another order that we didn't hear. Presumably, that was the Jenna call. He'd already made his decision for her to be the backup vampire because it would hurt Elena before Damon visited him. S0 Damon was never going to be the backup vampire? Klaus had bit him to kill him, but then either tasted or saw the werewolf bite and decided it would be more cruel to let Damon die that slow death? Oh, I wish I could tell Elena that, because you know she could blame Aunt Jenna being turned on Damon because she'll think Klaus did it after finding out Damon had freed Caroline.
Okay, my head hurts now. Your turn. What are your theories for how the ritual will play out next week? Does Jenna die? Does Elena become a vampire? Does Klaus succeed in becoming a hybrid? Does Damon keep his werewolf bite a secret? Remember, Damon put Rose out of her misery, so technically, the werewolf bite didn't kill her. Could Damon somehow become the second vampire/werewolf hybrid? Bonus question: How have Bonnie and Jeremy been passing all this time?
Ian Somerhalder, Nina Dobrev, and Paul Wesley star in the CW’s romance-infused vampire soap opera.
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