Contributor: John Keegan
Written by Michael Narducci
Directed by Chris Grismer
The episode begins with the mission statement we were all dreading. While Elena returns to writing in her diary, hardly a shocking turn of events given that she’s about as emo as it gets right now, Stefan is formulating a plan to get the vampirism cure for her. And thus the McGuffin of the season is established, as well as the possibility of a reset button no one actually wants to see.
Damon isn’t happy about the fact that Elena’s little taste of the vampiric good life did nothing for her mood. Let’s face it: if Elena were to go the way of Katherine, Damon might actually have a shot with her for once. Or at least, there’d be the possibility of copious sharing. I’m surprised that Elena hasn’t thought about that, actually. Now that she’s going to be around for a while (so far as she knows), what’s to stop her from taking the long view in terms of Salvatore relationships? A decade here, a century there, everyone’s happy!
Of course, it’s not just about Elena and the Salvatores anymore. Klaus knows about the cure, too, and he wants to take down the hunters for The Five and end this latest threat to vampires everywhere. (Recalling that to kill an Original, as The Five would like, would result in the death of all vampires descended from that Original.) And as long as Klaus has something to get out of the residents of Mystic Falls, they will have to deal with him and his machinations. (As Tyler learns all too quickly.)
Much of the episode seems designed to explain how the markings of The Five appear on a Hunter when they have been properly prepared, so that when Connor goes down after having his throat ripped out by Elena, the stage can be set for Jeremy to take up the mantle. And that means, for better or worse, that Jeremy had something done to him that was compelled away, and he will need to kill vampires to help Team Elena get that cure.
I’m a bit disappointed that Haley is being played up for cheap melodrama with Caroline and Tyler. Why can’t they just get along? The idea of releasing the rest of the hybrids from Klaus’ control is a good one, especially since it effectively delivers an army into the story for future use. On the other hand, they could find a way to break the sire bond more efficiently, and set it up so Jeremy can dispatch any of them who don’t agree to play nice with the food chain.
Meanwhile, Bonnie is trying to get back her magic with Professor Shane, which sounds great at first until one realizes that a lot of her time with him was spent being hypnotized. Setting aside the obvious creep factor of what he could have done with her all that time, since she’s apparently a really easy subject, doesn’t it occur to her that he might have left some seriously evil post-hypnotic suggestions in her noggin? As in, “when the time comes, betray your friends in a huge way”?
So now the big question is: with the hunt for the cure seemingly on hold until someone realizes Jeremy has the tattoo forming, what is going to happen with Elena? Why is she seeing things that apparently aren’t there? Or is someone messing with her? Is Elena going to be smart and tell someone about the problem right away, or do the typical Elena Gilbert thing and keep it to herself, so she can be ever more tortured? Whatever the answer, I hope it leads to more scenes of Elena learning to enjoy necking with strangers!
Final Score: 8/10