Thursday night on The Vampire Diaries spilled a lot of details. We took a while to write this recap, because we knew it needed to be pretty long to point out what people might have missed since Katherine talked so freakin quietly in the cave. Seriously, can’t people project and enunciate anymore? We know she was weak, but the viewer shouldn’t have trouble hearing characters. This was your classic set-up episode. We got a lot of answers and all the storylines, vampires, werewolves, and witches of this season have intersected to start one big showdown.
Rose was at the Salvatore brothers’ mansion, giving them the low-down on Klaus, the oldest of a group of vampires called “The Originals.” They ought to form a rock band with a name like that. The Salvatore brothers believed that Klaus was a myth, but Elena took him seriously when Rose told them that Klaus was a lot tougher than Elijah. Elena told Stefan she was going to school, but she really went down to Katherine’s tomb to question her. Caroline came along to open the tomb door. Katherine walked stiffly to the opening, and said a way too creepy/over-the-top, “Hello Elena.” Katherine wasn’t in the mood to talk unless her betrayer, Caroline, took off, so Caroline did. Elena offered Katherine shots of her blood and an old Petrova book with sketches and family history in exchange for Katherine's story and plan. It was long and not that exciting, although it’s nice to have answers. It kept our main character talking in a tomb for most of the episode.
This paragraph is Katherine’s story, summed up. Keep in mind that she could be lying, because she is Katherine: Katherine used to live in Bulgaria, where her name was Katerina Petrova. It was 1490, and she had a child outside of wedlock. The baby was ripped from Katerina so that the birth could be hushed-up. Elena is a descendant of that child and the last doppelganger of the Petrova family. Maybe losing a daughter without ever getting to hold her is what made Katerina so hard-hearted. And if you are wondering why Nina Dobrev speaks such good Bulgarian, it's because that is where she is from, originally. She was mainly raised in Canada though. Two years later, Katherine was courted by Klaus, which she liked until she found out his plan. He wanted to drain her Petrova blood in order to lift the vampire curse. The original Petrova was sacrificed to create the spell. (We think.) The doppelganger thing was intended to be a way to undo the spell. We guess the witches who created the spell weren't fully committed to the decision? Vampires had to wait until a doppelganger appeared to break the curse, because, obviously, not all descendants of the family were doppelgangers. Trevor, who was around back then, helped her run from Klaus, because Trevor was in love with her. Trevor sent Katerina to a little cabin. Inside was Rose, who was NOT in love with Katerina. Rose intended to give Katerina to Klaus. Katerina stabbed herself rather than be sacrificed. Rose fed her some vampire blood to heal her so Katerina wouldn’t die. Trevor showed up and distracted Rose from Katerina, and Katerina used that time to hang herself She turned herself into a vampire because Rose’s blood was in her system. Katerina’s first victim was the old woman who owned the cabin. Katerina thought that Klaus would have no reason to chase her down and kill her if she was no long a human doppelganger he could sacrifice. But she was wrong. Klaus is one vengeful SOB (which means he is also prideful. Could this be an Achilles heel for the yet-to-be-seen character?), and he killed Katerina’s parents. He has hunted Katerina, Trevor, and Rose for all these years. Elena deduced that Katherine’s new plan was to make a deal with Klaus to give him what he needed in exchange for him leaving her alone forever. Katherine told Elena the ingredients to break the spell. Petrova Doppelganger + Tyler + a witch (Bonnie) + a vampire (who would have been Caroline in Katherine’s original plan) + moonstone = curse broken.
The other characters were busy too. Bonnie agreed to hang out with Jeremy at the Grill and play pool with him, even though she is still having trouble seeing him as a potential boyfriend. Umm, is she blind? There, she met Luka, a guy who just moved into town from Louisiana with his dad, Jonas. Jonas had studied the Salem witches and immediately discovered Bonnie’s powers. Luka talked to Bonnie, apologized for his dad’s intrusion, and admitted that he and his dad were both warlocks. He said that he and his dad just wanted to fit in, for once. Luka seems to be a new romantic interest for Bonnie. Poor Jeremy. We greatly prefer Jeremy to Luka. But, to be fair, we haven't seen a lot of Luka. But looks-wise, we like Jeremy best. It's pretty unbelievable how no one swoons whenever he walks by on this show.
After threatening each other enough, Rose took Damon to meet with a vampire she trusted named Slater who had helped Rose get information about Klaus in the past. The three sat in a coffee shop with tinted windows so that Rose wouldn’t burn in the daylight. Slater had used his long life to become very knowledgeable, earning 18 bachelor’s degrees, four PhDs, and three masters. Damon scoffed at this, because he would rather spend his eternity on murder, revenge, pining for Elena, getting drunk, being funny, and having a good time. We agree. It’s not like Slater can put these degrees on his resume without raising eyebrows, so what good can come of them? He should have just stuck to the library and gotten the wisdom from books rather than listening to drones. Slater gave us one piece of decent information: The Originals want to lift the curse so that they can keep the werewolves from lifting their own curse before the vampires do. Only one curse can be broken, the sun curse or the moon curse. Elijah, who has a sun ring, tracked the three down, eavesdropped on them, and threw a handful of change at the windows, shattering them and scaring everyone inside. The sun burned Rose, and Damon had to get her back to his car. Rose sobbed, scared that Klaus had found them. They went home, where Damon drank and sulked. Rose came up to him and apologized that they wouldn’t be able to save Elena. Damon replied that he WOULD save Elena, actually. They discussed the difficulties of being an old vampire and still having feelings, and then Damon and Rose had sex. Afterwards, Slater phoned and told them that they could render the moonstone ineffective if they could get it and a witch to do a spell. At the end of the conversation, the camera cut to where Slater was, and Elijah was standing behind him, telling him that he did well. Slater said something like, “Thanks, I have a degree in theatre. How did you compel me when vampires can’t compel other vampires?” Elijah asserted that he was special, and then he compelled Slater to push a stake into his own heart, killing him, because Slater knew too much. As if that wasn’t enough of a twist, Jonas (Luka's dad) appeared behind Elijah, apparently in league with him.
Caroline distracted Stefan from wondering where Elena was by sitting him down for a talk at the grill. She told Stefan about how she told Tyler that she was a vampire. Stefan quickly realized that this information should be kept secret from Damon, because if he found out, he would kill Caroline. Stefan told Caroline that she reminds him of his old friend Lexi. Then he realized that Caroline was distracting him and figured out where Elena was. Smart Stefan.
Stefan went to the tomb to stop Elena from listening to and believing Katherine. He showed up just in time to hear Katherine talk about how Klaus had killed her family. He thought Katherine made that up to scare Elena into making a deal to free her from the tomb. He called her a manipulative, psychotic bitch. Katherine, however, didn’t want to be free. She was safe in the tomb, because Klaus couldn’t enter it to kill her without getting trapped there himself. "I'll be the safest psychotic bitch in town," she said, and then she slinked off to the back of the tomb, done with the long conversation. Wow. Katherine would rather be trapped and mummified than face Klaus. That realization made an impact on both Stefan and Elena. They left the tomb, where Elena broke down in tears because her friends and family were in danger because of her, and Stefan hugged her. Why are these two bot back together yet? It isn't helping anyone stay safe now. The flip-flopping and crying was touching the first time this season, and now it is getting old. We actually dream of Stefan/Katherine, Damon/Elena combinations, but we know that Stefan/Elena is healthier. We got a shot of Katherine in the tomb, fondling a sketch of her parents, perfect eye shadow gleaming in the light. What light?!!! Where is she getting eye shadow in a tomb after a few weeks?
This episode was a little talky and overloaded, but it had info, action, new faces, and Damon finally got laid.
Episode grade: B
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