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19 November 2012 @ 04:52 am
4.06 - 'We All Go A Little Mad Sometimes' Take Two (The Vampire Diaries)  
So I've been watching and rewatching and thinking a lot more about "We All Go A Little Mad Sometimes" and liking more and more everything the episode gave us. To the point where I'm rating this episode ever and ever higher on my list of favorite episodes. It's just that good. Easily the best of the season, and one of the best of the series. This is a follow-up to my episode discussion post, and here I just highlight a few points that I didn't mention or go into more detail about in that original post.

Just a reminder: PLEASE DO NOT SPOIL ME. I'm not watching webclips. I'm not watching any episode preview other than the one that airs right after the show. I'm not looking at episode stills. I'm not reading episode synopses. I'm not reading/watching interviews or following the actor/creators TVD-related tweets.Basically, rule of thumb: If it has not aired, please do not mention it in this post. Thank you; I really appreciate it. :)

** We’ve been told that songs in key scenes matter on this show. I believe that refers to tone as well as lyrics. In the bedroom scene (AKA: the scene where Elena Gilbert was clearly, unabashedly, totally in love with Damon Salvatore and she wasn’t gonna hide it no more!), the song chosen was very good for Damon/Elena.
    Fay Wolf – “The Thread of the Thing”

    ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah oh and the whosit and the whatsit and the stories of kings and the needle and the thread of the thing and the ladder at the scene and the cutting off at the knees in a little while i see that i love the way you came on i love the way you came on to me to me ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah oh

    and the where is and the there is and the start of the fling but the riot breaks the thread of the thing and the lenses ain't clean we'll need another tv screen in a little while i see but i love the way you came on i love the way you came on i love the way you came on i love the way you came on to me to me to me to me ah ah ah ah ah ah ah ah oh

    it weighs out, it weighs out.. and you know i love you i love you

Essentially, I read that this song as about a woman in love and even though she knows there will be problems, in the long run, those problems are small, inconsequential. They don’t matter because "it weighs out… and you know I love you." More than the lyrics, though, there is the musical tone. There is a tender, almost giddy quality beneath the seriousness of the beat. You can’t help but smile. The sound of it evokes love, acceptance and a feeling of rightness.

Just like what we saw in Elena’s eyes and in her smile when she looked at Damon throughout the entire scene.


** I spent the summer running season 03 – especially the second half – through my brain, trying to figure out what the show could do in the upcoming season that would make my biggest issue with that season work. My biggest issue was how Elena let all that Stefan did just slide. How could I possibly justify that and not question the show itself. After coming to the conclusion that most of my issue with the season was wrapped up in my own disappointed expectation – an expectation that was a creation of my own making and not the show’s fault – I realized that there was one thing that could happen. One thing that if the show in some way referenced, addressed, even just one line that pointed to why I think Elena did what she did, I would be happy.

I didn’t realize until I’d rewatched the episode and did tons more thinking on it that I actually did get that one thing. For me, I could justify Elena letting Stefan slide because in her mind, there was also an expiration date on her relationship with him. So she let his misdeeds, lies, etc. go because she does love him and because he was her anchor, brought her back to life after her parents’ died. But… and this is key, she always knew it wasn’t forever despite her “always Stefan.” She believed that they had two, three years tops – as Stefan himself made very clear back in “History Repeating” – so she just wanted to appreciate the good they had had and not dwell on the bad. So that worked for me, but I needed something from the writers that indicated that maybe, just maybe they got that too.

It was when Elena angrily, resentfully told Stefan that she had to wash her brother’s blood off her hands so he had to forgive her if she wasn’t in the mood to listen to him try and talk his way out of it. No, she didn’t call him out on all he’d done in the past – but I honestly never expected that we would get that on the show – but how she said it, how she worded that phrase, it definitely rang as if she was calling him out on how he had always talked his way out of things in the past.

Meaning, yes, she’s been well aware of what he’s done and she’s let it slide in the past, but not this time. Of course, I’d like a bit more, I’d like more of a condemnation of how he’s done that, but for Elena who’s rarely harsh with anyone, I’ll take it. (Because I hate having a disagreement of any kind with my beloved show. Psst! On that note: Kill Tyler, kthanxbai!)

** Season 03’s sixth episode, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” was very interesting in that it took many positive things with Stefan and Elena from the first batch of episodes and gave them a less-rosy spin. At the time the episode aired, I wrote this:
    … there were so many moments that were dang-near flat-out re-enactments, or very similar in feel and tone to early Stefan/Elena scenes that built up their "epic" love. It was as if by going back there, but putting a toxic spin on the scenes, it was stripping away the heart at the beginning of their relationship.

    They bump into each other outside the bathroom as they did in Elena's first remembered meeting with Stefan. This time, she's anxious, wary and wants away from him. He's snarky and uncaring. Outside on the football field where she watched him with stars in her eyes, and he gave her the necklace, he's a jerk-off douche-bag to an unsuspecting kid, and he callously calls her a human bloodbag. The bonfire scenes were reminiscent of their bonding moments in the Pilot at the Falls, but this time, Stefan was talking down to her, chiding her, and calling attention to her jealousy over another girl close to his brother.

    And then finally there was the final scene between the two which felt familiar to me -- I found myself thinking of the scene leading to their first kiss in the second episode -- where it seemed as if Elena and he both were caught in the moment, but neither actually were. [Stefan was leading up to an insult (“Do you know how pathetic you are?”) and Elena was expecting it, when it came, she staked him in the gut.
Simply put we had all of these scenes casting a negative flashback on earlier, happier Stefan/Elena moments. This episode reminded me of that to a degree. The difference was that whereas “Smells Like Teen Spirit” contrasted early Stefan/Elena scenes with new Stefan/Elena ones, this episode contrasted Stefan/Elena scenes with Damon/Elena ones and gave those moments “done over” to Damon and Elena.

1.) In “The Departed,” Elena went over the bridge and died in Willow Lake. Here, Damon went over the bridge with Elena to save her “unlife.”

2.) “Growing Pains” opened with Elena waking up in her room to find out she was dead. With Stefan the first person she saw. Here, Elena woke up after going into the water and it was Damon (and only Damon) that she saw sitting there, waiting for her to wake up.

3.) Also in “Growing Pains,” Stefan put the ring on Elena’s finger promising forever. Here, Elena took the ring off and dropped it in the lake where Stefan let her die. And then (albeit off-screen), Damon found the ring and put it back on her hand.

4.) Finally, not quite as obvious, but I certainly was reminded of the moment in “Rose” when Elena saw her savior with a look of such happiness, and Damon thought it was him, only to realize seconds later, she was looking at Stefan. Here, when Elena saw Damon upon waking and she remembered all that had happened on the bridge, the way she looked at him when she told him that he saved her –


And when he stood up and walked over to the bed –


– certainly reminded me of that moment. And instead of Stefan being the recipient of that smile, that look of quiet joy and near-devotion… it was all for Damon.

** I was initially a little bummed at how upset Elena was in the scene with “Katherine” where she told her how Stefan couldn’t love her anymore because she was no longer the girl he fell for. She tried to deny “Katherine’s” words, she cried, she fought her, but after watching the final scene with her and Stefan and doing a lot more thinky-thoughts, it hit me. Beyond the obvious, of course, which I’d gotten the first time, that it was never Katherine saying these words, but Elena’s subconscious telling her what she already knew but just had been unable to admit.

No, watching it again, I thought back to the last real time that Stefan and Elena had broken up, in “Plan B.” Both had shed copious tears and been completely devastated. This break-up, on the other hand, featured sad, but resigned looks, just a slight tearing up and easy acceptance. And so when I rewatched the whole episode, I realized that Elena didn’t actually end things with Stefan on the porch with him.

No, she’d come to the conclusion that they were over in that conversation between herself and the Katherine-hallucination. That is why she tried to deny “her” words, that’s why she shed those tears, that’s why she sat there on the floor rocking back and forth. Because she had just given up the relationship, the love that she had been holding onto desperately for over a year. And that’s why when she saw Damon on the bridge, and in her room, she looked up at as she did. She accepted, bathed in his presence as she did. Because in her heart, she’d already said goodbye to Stefan. That discussion on the porch was just a formality.

** I went into detail about why I feel that the idea that human!Elena is all for Stefan, while vampire!Elena is for Damon is all bunk. Short version: We, the audience, already saw human!Elena falling pretty hard for Damon, she just hadn’t admitted it to herself. OK then, why is the show pushing this theme so hard? Honestly, I think it’s for the Stefan/Elena fanbase and the producer’s attempts to keep them hanging on as long as they possibly can.

They are the words – and it will remain spoken of as such until we get closer to the end of the series, I believe – because they wants to keep Stefan/Elena fans watching. I truly believe it’s as simple as that. The idea is that if they dangle that premise – that Elena only is with Damon because she's not human, if she was human, she'd be with Stefan! – they can keep the Stefan/Elena fans around until they closer to the end because they can hold onto the dream that once Elena regains her humanity, she’ll go straight back to Stefan. Which, again, I *really* don’t see happening.

They – as in Stefan/Elena, the two lyingest liars ever – can say that as long as they want to allow themselves to believe that, but these are not the characters that the audience is supposed to take their truth-cues from. For reals.

** We often talk about how this is not about the good guys, the heroes, etc. After all, our heroes are murderous vampires who kill a lot. And if they’re not vampires, they are witches or werewolves or humans aiding and abetting said vampires, witches and werewolves. That point has never been driven more home than in this one.

Chris was someone we, the viewers just met, yes, but he was a “good guy.” He was someone that Tyler – one of our heroes – cared about. And he helped them. He helped Stefan try to rescue Elena at Tyler’s urging, and at very great risk to himself. And knowing that… knowing all of that, Caroline made a deal to go out on a date with Klaus to kill Chris. Let me repeat that: Caroline decided that going on a date was a do-able price to the life of someone. Someone who was helping them. And then Stefan staked that someone who was helping them, who had *just* risked his life to hand Stefan a key to save his girlfriend. And then Jeremy – a human, not a vampire, not a werewolf – took an axe and chopped off the head of someone who had just risked his life to save Jeremy’s sister.

Our heroes are not the good guys. Our heroes? Are bad guys. All of them. They are so wrapped up in this tribal mentality thing they have where the people in their group – Elena, Damon, Stefan, Caroline, Bonnie, Jeremy, Matt and Tyler – are the only lives that are worth saving, that are not worth risking. Anyone else? Collateral damage. Wow. Just wow. And I love it. I love that the show is this dark, is willing to go this dark and is well aware of it. Tyler flat-out called Caroline out on this very thing. It’s just crazy. And awesome. But scary. When does it hit them all just how far off the beaten path their skewed morality has become? It’s really, really fascinating to me.

Bottom-line, the more I watch (and watch and watch and watch) this episode, the more I think about it, it’s amazing. There is SO MUCH CHARACTER STUFF in this, it’s mind-blowing. And where they go from here? I have no idea, but I am very, very looking forward to the journey.
 
 
 
eolivet on November 19th, 2012 12:46 pm (UTC)
:D I'm so glad to hear you say this, because I thought this was easily the best episode of the season, but your review made me second guess how good it was. You know I'd been on the fence about S4, but this ep was just SO great. The acting, the writing, the plotting...all of it just worked, for me.

Our heroes are not the good guys. Our heroes? Are bad guys. All of them

In addition to the "good" guys acting bad, I loved the "bad" guys acting good. Klaus did his best to save Elena. He had her best interests at heart, having gone through this himself. And yet, like the boy who cried "Hunter torment!", he'd double-crossed them too many times and had just made himself SO untrustworthy that even when he tried to do something for once that was completely the right thing to do, and help their friend, they assumed he was up to no good and they (Stefan) were the ones who put her in danger.

It was a wonderful episode about shades of gray, which are my favorite. Another favorite part was when Elena's mother -- just for a moment -- turned impatient. I don't remember the line, but she was all sweetness and light and then she had that edge to her voice that reminded the audience she really wasn't a good presence here.

Everyone wore a gray hat -- even Shane, who at least told them about the new hunter, allowing them to end Elena's torment (even Klaus didn't know that!) Everyone was a little good and a little bad, and it was nuanced and awesome. Almost like a psychological thriller. LOVED it. :D
Arabian: Elena10arabian on November 19th, 2012 01:27 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure why you think I didn't like it or didn't think it was great initially. I said it was another strong episode and that it was great, it just didn't blow my socks off. And it still doesn't blow my socks off, it's not that kind of episode. It's just gotten stronger as an episode in my mind, peeling back layers reveals more and more. But I never considered it less than great. I even checked my original post, I wasn't negative about anything except for Klaus -- which I mostly recanted on, and my ever-existing cry about why Tyler still exists. And I did mention at the top that I had a migraine, and you know now, of course, my kitty was sick, so I wasn't exactly in the best frame of mind. I'm just confused that you seem to think I didn't like it or something. I really did. Hmmm....

Maybe I didn't seem more effusive to you because other than the directorial issues of episode 04, I've really liked every episode this season and I thought that episode 03 (minus the horrid keg-stand/motorcycle ride) and episode 05 were really great too. I do think that 06 is the strongest of the bunch so far, but maybe that's why my praise didn't seem to stand out to you? I know you haven't been as enthused about the season overall so far like me. Maybe that's it.

Re: Bad guys acting good, I don't know. Technically what Klaus was trying to achieve was good, but he wasn't doing it to save Elena. He was doing it to keep Elena around until he could find another Hunter so he could turn her into his personal blood bag again. So even though the act was good, the intention behind it was still pretty horrible. So, yeah, I don't consider Klaus good. Ever. LOL!

I didn't like it for the shades of gray myself, for me, I liked it because of how much wonderful Elena stuff we got because all of that stuff from Connor, from Katherine, from her mother was ELENA. It wasn't their thoughts, it was hers, her fears, her realizations, her coming to term with her darkest thoughts about herself... which led to her being all moony-eyed with Damon and going with the break-up flow with Stefan. :)

Edited at 2012-11-19 02:09 pm (UTC)
Cassandra Elise: ct on crackcassandra_elise on November 19th, 2012 06:50 pm (UTC)
Essentially, I read that this song as about a woman in love and even though she knows there will be problems, in the long run, those problems are small, inconsequential. They don’t matter because "it weighs out… and you know I love you." More than the lyrics, though, there is the musical tone. There is a tender, almost giddy quality beneath the seriousness of the beat. You can’t help but smile. The sound of it evokes love, acceptance and a feeling of rightness.

Thanks so much for sharing the song. I honestly didn't remember there was even a song playing during that scene. I must've been too distracted by the greatness that was Damon/Elena. hee hee. I agree with your interpretation of the lyrics, and I think it's a really lovely song. :)

Beyond the obvious, of course, which I’d gotten the first time, that it was never Katherine saying these words, but Elena’s subconscious telling her what she already knew but just had been unable to admit...she’d come to the conclusion that they were over in that conversation between herself and the Katherine-hallucination. That is why she tried to deny “her” words, that’s why she shed those tears, that’s why she sat there on the floor rocking back and forth.

BINGO! All of the hallucinations were manifestations of her true thoughts and feelings: Elena feeling she deserves to die after all the pain she's caused her friends...those thoughts she's expressed aloud before over the three seasons. But her realization that Stefan can't accept the new Elena while Damon can and what that means in regards to her own feelings for the two brothers...it was a wake up call after living in Denial-land for so long.

Edited at 2012-11-19 06:53 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Damon & Elena02arabian on November 20th, 2012 08:15 am (UTC)
Thanks so much for sharing the song. I honestly didn't remember there was even a song playing during that scene.

I only remember because I have a bedtime playlist of D/E songs and so whenever a good scene with them hits that clearly is supposed to mean something, I check the music.

I must've been too distracted by the greatness that was Damon/Elena. hee hee. I agree with your interpretation of the lyrics, and I think it's a really lovely song. :)

It really is and it speaks SO WELL for D/E.

BINGO! All of the hallucinations were manifestations of her true thoughts and feelings: Elena feeling she deserves to die after all the pain she's caused her friends...those thoughts she's expressed aloud before over the three seasons. But her realization that Stefan can't accept the new Elena while Damon can and what that means in regards to her own feelings for the two brothers...it was a wake up call after living in Denial-land for so long.

Exactly. That's what that conversation with "Katherine" yielded -- Elena's wake-up call, kick outta denial-ville... finally!
Florencia: DE (If It Wasn't For You)florencia7 on November 19th, 2012 10:01 pm (UTC)
”it definitely rang as if she was calling him out on how he had always talked his way out of things in the past.” - I love love love how you find & point out those things I would never notice without you! ♥ In that context, Elena's words make even more sense and they indeed very much suggest that she's well aware of everything that happened. She just chose to let it go, to forgive, not to to talk about it. But it doesn't mean that she forgot it happened.

I love what you say about contrasting the scenes. I guess it's also no accident that in Elena's first scene in 4x01 she says “How did you-” then Damon interrupts with “Save you? He didn't.” And in 4x06 she says the sentence - which is finally true and complete: “You saved me.”

”that look of quiet joy and near-devotion…” - Your gif captures that moment so perfectly. I love that the show is taking this route, the tender, slower route, the gradual falling in love route instead of something more raw passion-driven.

Chris' death would've been a very difficult plot point to digest, if it wasn't for the show to actually acknowledge that tribal mentality thing that you discuss. It is fascinating because it is being questioned instead of just happening.

Reading your thoughts always makes me so happy ♥
Arabian: Damon & Elena21arabian on November 20th, 2012 08:31 am (UTC)
I love love love how you find & point out those things I would never notice without you!

Thanks, for me it was just that I really, really wanted that something that gave me that justification and that line, how she said it, so did the trick!

In that context, Elena's words make even more sense and they indeed very much suggest that she's well aware of everything that happened. She just chose to let it go, to forgive, not to to talk about it. But it doesn't mean that she forgot it happened.

EXACTLY!

I love what you say about contrasting the scenes.

It just really struck me and is one of those things that continues to drive home how very obviously Damon/Elena are THE couple of the show.

I guess it's also no accident that in Elena's first scene in 4x01 she says “How did you-” then Damon interrupts with “Save you? He didn't.” And in 4x06 she says the sentence - which is finally true and complete: “You saved me.”

Aww, that I didn't catch. Beautiful.

I love that the show is taking this route, the tender, slower route, the gradual falling in love route instead of something more raw passion-driven.

Agreed. Now, when the raw passion comes out to play, I won't complain, AND even better the anti-D/Ers won't be able to claim it's JUST raw passion, it's JUST lust. Nope, cuz the love is there, baby. Oh yeah!

Chris' death would've been a very difficult plot point to digest, if it wasn't for the show to actually acknowledge that tribal mentality thing that you discuss. It is fascinating because it is being questioned instead of just happening.

Right, which was briliant... and always leads me to hope that finally TYLER WILL DIE!

Reading your thoughts always makes me so happy ♥

You're too sweet and I very, very much appreciate that you take the time to share your thoughts with me. :)
(Deleted comment)
Arabian: Damon&Stefan04arabian on November 20th, 2012 08:49 am (UTC)
Damon did finally get his moment. *tear*

YES, HE DID!

It was just the denouement; the actual decision came earlier.

Yup, yup. That really struck me when I rewatched the episode.

(Anonymous) on November 20th, 2012 10:25 pm (UTC)
Yeah! So glad you rewatched and saw some great, new things about this episode! It really way littered with such great character development and movement. I also really think that this episode was about Damon and Elena and their charater progression. It was such an important episode and it felt to me a new huge turnaround for this triangle that has really been dragging for so damn long.

I'm very excited to see the next episode and where they're taking this thing!
Arabian: Damon & Elena15arabian on November 21st, 2012 06:04 am (UTC)
It really was incredibly strong for Elena in the character exploration department in a way that people have been calling for for a long time.

It was such an important episode and it felt to me a new huge turnaround for this triangle that has really been dragging for so damn long.

Agreed; and unlike in 3.22 where Elena didn't really choose between the brothers -- she just chose who to say goodbye too -- this was her real choice. Because even after 3.22, she was still turning to Damon, wanting to be with Damon, she hadn't let him go. Here in that porch scene with Stefan, she let Stefan go.
(Anonymous) on November 21st, 2012 07:29 am (UTC)
It was interesting that even after Damon told her the truth about what Stefan was up to with this cure business she still dumped Stefan. So I do think that says something about where they are taking Elena this season and the triangle for that matter.

Of course we all know that Delena never goes smoothly so i'm waiting for the other shoe to drop because there's no way the writers would just let Damon get everything he wants in a span of two episodes...Damon is their whipping boy! Something is so going to tear them apart! It's the TVD way!
Arabian: Elena07arabian on November 21st, 2012 08:42 am (UTC)
Like I said in my post, after rewatching it, it was pretty obvious that Elena essentially broke up with Stefan (in her heart and mind) in that scene with "Katherine." The porch was just the formality of it. I think if Stefan hadn't said anything, Elena would have opened that door. She wasn't having a "rough patch" with Stefan because he lied to her -- which is what Damon believed -- she and Stefan were having a rough patch because they don't fit anymore, because Stefan doesn't accept her for who she is now.

RE: Damon/Elena not happening -- I'd like to see (after some temptation, hehehe) Elena basically say that whatever she feels for him, she's not ready to just jump from Stefan to him. She needs to figure out herself first. We'll see.
vanimy: Elenavanimy on November 29th, 2012 06:34 pm (UTC)
Hey! *waves* Sorry for being away for so long, I was swamped with work, so I read your entries, put them aside to respond later but then I was a walking zombie and at last I was spoiled for 4x07 and even beyond (well I hope the speculation is just that... speculation but I think I was spoiled and good) so I was wary about coming here and commenting. :( Thanks so much, tumblr. :/

Anyway, about THIS episode. I loved it, not in an OMG way sadly but I really enjoyed it. I especially loved the focus on Elena and her thinking process. I legit clapped and cheered when she told Stefan off at the beginning of the episode. This had been a long time coming, seriously. At last!!

I really agree with you on about everything you said on both your entries about the episode.

There are two things I kind of disagree on though :

-I'm kind of worried about Jeremy and what killing another hybrid is going to do to him (not spoiled about any of that, don't worry!) and I agree with you on how having Klaus knowing about him being a hunter is a very BAD idea (one that can only come from Stefan BTW :P) but I disagree about the show being about bad guys now.

I would say it's more about shades of gray. Like Damon isn't totally a bad guy and Stefan a good guy, the other characters aren't good or bad, they just do morally ambiguous things. Jeremy killed a hybrid after all, someone who probably killed a lot of human beings especially when he was still sired to Klaus. Also the show made a point to have Jeremy kill someone we knew nothing about apart from the fact he was buddy with Tyler. Even Hayley's death -had she been a hybrid- would've been more shocking and more evil than that. As soon as I saw Chris and he was -gasp- given a name, I just knew he was toast by the end of the episode. Granted I thought Klaus would kill him but... just the same.

Not to say I didn't get Tyler being upset about this and I liked how there was some kind of fallout for Caroline and how Caroline acted perfectly in character and just didn't care much about someone who wasn't someone she knew personally. It's just I didn't care that much either, I got everyone's reaction but I wasn't shocked or dismayed by the Scooby Gang's actions to save Elena, frankly I was more concerned for Jeremy who's the one who did the killing.

So just like Elena killing Connor didn't make Elena evil (a guy who repeatedly tried to kill her and her friends and threatened to blow up her brother and innocent human friends), Jeremy killing Chris wasn't crossing a line either. Yet. We'll see how it goes. For now I think the show is writing this moral issue very well.

-Stefan and Elena's breakup. I agree with you on everything you wrote about them, how mature it was, how it all made sense (and how it would've been even better had 4x04 not been butchered!) BUT... the timing really surprised me when I first watched the episode and even now.

Not so much the timing story-wise (a Stelena break up wasn't so surprising) but SHOW-wise. The writers basically broke up one of the main couples halfway through the first half of the season after hyping up the choice in last season's finale. A breakup in the mid-season finale or right before it? Yep, totally expecting it, but a breakup now?? It still baffles me. Because it felt too soon. Yep, too soon, I said it, lol, in the fourth season in. I know it sounds crazy but that's what it felt like to me. I would've rather had a few more episodes with Elena realizing everything that's wrong with Stefan. Instead we have Elena seemingly breaking up over her feelings for Damon (not that I mind this per se) and only BECAUSE she became a vampire. And even if I know she loved Damon as a human too the way it was worded left a kind of sour taste in my mouth.

What's even more baffling is Elena starting to face her feelings for Damon in next episode (not spoiling it, it's in the preview you watched from what you wrote) and I'm still feeling like the timing isn't quite right. I would've preferred something like the mid-finale or the end of the season, IDK. Something about it leaves me uneasy. But that's me never happy about anything lol we'll see how it goes starting tonight with the new episode. I hope I'll respond to your post sooner this time! ;)
Arabian: Damon & Elena21arabian on November 30th, 2012 12:06 am (UTC)
PART 1 --

Anyway, about THIS episode. I loved it, not in an OMG way sadly but I really enjoyed it. I especially loved the focus on Elena and her thinking process. I legit clapped and cheered when she told Stefan off at the beginning of the episode. This had been a long time coming, seriously. At last!!

No, it wasn't OMG, but I don't think it wasn't intended to be OMG. It was just a really, really solid, character-episode that really worked for me.

-I'm kind of worried about Jeremy and what killing another hybrid is going to do to him (not spoiled about any of that, don't worry!) and I agree with you on how having Klaus knowing about him being a hunter is a very BAD idea (one that can only come from Stefan BTW :P) but I disagree about the show being about bad guys now.

I would say it's more about shades of gray.


They can have shades of gray, which I agree they all have, but they're still the bad guys for me. That's just how I see it. They kill people. Lots and lots of people. And often enough it's not bad people that they are killing necessarily, like Chris. And they make their killing decisions based not on what's right or wrong in general, but what's best for their little tribe. But I'm OK with that because of the world that the show has designed.

-Stefan and Elena's breakup. I agree with you on everything you wrote about them, how mature it was, how it all made sense (and how it would've been even better had 4x04 not been butchered!) BUT... the timing really surprised me when I first watched the episode and even now.

Yeah, it doesn't surprise me at all. I remember saying that I hoped and thought there would be a break-up before the first half, but was resigned to a mid-season break-up because that's what "tv rules" dictates. But story-wise, show-wise? It had to happen sooner. Otherwise it completely would have been untrue to the story they've been telling. Elena didn't make her choice to be with Stefan. She chose to say goodbye to Stefan. Period. But once everything fell out as it did, she had to see it through, she HAD to try with Stefan, though. I don't think they needed a few more episodes because really how long should it take someone to realize that they aren't in love with the other person anymore and that they are in love with someone else? Elena (and Stefan) were both holding onto what they had before he left. But they had both grown and changed, which we SAW happen. But until they were back in that same situation, neither would be able to fully accept.

Throughout the last six episodes, we saw Elena unable to *be* with Stefan in any way really, and yet, turn to Damon time and time again. Had it kept going it would have felt like they were dragging it out purely for the sake of tv rules. And in this episode, Elena came to a HUGE understanding of who she is, where she is, what she's been thinking in this episode. She truly had an epiphany, not so much about Stefan and Elena or Damon and Elena, but about ELENA. And that is why things played out as they did.

As for how it was worded -- in tv-watching world, I still maintain that was 100% to give S/E fans hope. And in the show, I still maintain that was 100% to give Stefan some pride left because, yes, she did fall for Damon as a human. If her feelings for Damon were magnified, so would her feelings for Stefan have been ... and they may have been, but it doesn't compare to her feelings for Damon. Which means -- as I said what was unspoken -- is that even as a human, Elena's feelings for Damon were stronger than what she felt for Stefan. There was a reason we got Elena kissing both of them towards the end of the season, and there were startling different reactions to both kisses. There was also a reason we had Elena essentially telling Matt she "should" be with Stefan because, erm, isn't that how it's supposed to be? paired with but I waaaaaaaaaaaaant Damon so desperately it's tearing me apart!

It all worked for me. My only issue remains (aside from a few plot holes, LOL), the god-awful direction of "The Five."
vanimy: Rebekahvanimy on November 30th, 2012 03:05 pm (UTC)
That's just how I see it. They kill people. Lots and lots of people.

Okay, I must have missed episodes or I'm suffering from amnesia because lots of people? When? In this season I can recall Connor and Chris... and that's it. Connor killed a lot of vampires and threatened to kill a lot of people including humans, he's not a good guy per se either (I would've put him in the good guys category if he hadn't been willing to kill human beings to reach his goal). And Chris? you're putting him in the good guys category but we know nothing about the guy except that he's one of Tyler's buddies and he's no longer sired to Klaus. He still is a hybrid so he needs blood to survive, I doubt he only drank blood bags, he probably killed a bunch of people too. So not necessarily a good guy either. I'm sure the show doesn't intend to write about bad guys. The only fallout (that I know of for now) was between Caroline and Tyler, nothing else for the other characters. If that was the show's intent, Jeremy would've killed a human being to save Elena.

Even if the mythology is very different, it would be like saying Buffy was a bad guy for killing vampires right and left. The line BtVS crossed was when Willow killed a human being. That's when we knew Willow had turned into a bad guy. And that's how I feel about TVD too, the day the main characters kill an innocent human being is the day they become bad guys to me, no matter the reason. Elena may be a bad guy but the show wrote Connor's death as being in kind of self defense. Jeremy's killed two hybrids for now, so no, not a bad guy to me. As for Caroline, Stefan was willing to turn a human if she didn't find another way fast so in a way she didn't have much of a choice either.

I don't think TVD has turned into 'Dexter'. At least not yet.

And they make their killing decisions based not on what's right or wrong in general, but what's best for their little tribe.

It sounds so cold, turned that way! It's not really what's best for their little tribe, it's about saving the people closest to them, they've lost so many people, who can blame them? Between an unknown guy who's a hybrid and their closest friend who's a good person, I can't blame them for choosing their closest friend.

The lines between right and wrong are blurred, I agree, but it doesn't mean the main characters have become bad people themselves.

EDIT (forgot to respond about S/E) :

Mmh... I like your explanation about how Elena's feelings for Stefan should have been magnified too, you did write that in one of your posts. Oh well, if its to keep S/E fans hoping, I'm generous, they can have this. :P

Edited at 2012-11-30 03:11 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Damon & Elena20arabian on November 30th, 2012 03:20 pm (UTC)
I think you're taking my "bad guys" in the literal way and I'm, erm, not. They're bad guys in that yes they kill people. First of all, I was included Damon and Stefan who have both killed lots and lots of people even when they were supposedly good since they've been on the show (Mrs. Gibbons, Andie, Jessica, NotNowDana, Chad, Carter, the 2 deputies in 2.05, the hybrids that Damon have killed, the hybrid that Jeremy killed, Connor, Chris, the 3 deputies in 3.01, John (although it didn't take), Alaric (although it didn't take), Jeremy (although, it didn't). Yes, there were extenuating circumstances in some of these cases, yes, not all of this people were choir children, but they were people that were killed by our characters for various reasons and some of them wholly to save their friends. When I said "they make their killing decisions based not on what's right or wrong in general, but what's best for their little tribe" I didn't mean it in a cold way, I meant exactly what you said. It is about their tribe, their people the people who matter to them. So that they don't die, they have killed others. It's just their mindset now.

We don't have that mindset. But these characters don't live in a world of black and white, it's gray and they kill people. A lot of people and it's justified why they do it, to save the lives of people they love, they kill so that their loved ones will live, but they are still killing. So judging them on real world scales, they fall under bad people more than good people. But because of how this show is designed and developed, I'm OK with that because it's a supernatural world and there are different rules.

Yup, I'm fine with giving S/E this bit and the sire thing from this episode -- poor dears, it's really all they've got to hold onto. The story is sooooooooooo Damon/Elena it's not even funny. And hah! Julie interviewed about this episode an essentially said that the only reason they've kept the hybrid story front and center was because of the Damon/Elena twist they were planning on telling here. Meaning that yeah, Damon/Elena is that big a deal that their story dictates others. Seriously, it's the next episode, but I freaking ADORED episode seven. SO HARD.
vanimy: D/E kissvanimy on November 30th, 2012 03:36 pm (UTC)
Re : the bad guys topic.

But these characters don't live in a world of black and white, it's gray and they kill people. A lot of people and it's justified why they do it, to save the lives of people they love, they kill so that their loved ones will live, but they are still killing. So judging them on real world scales, they fall under bad people more than good people. But because of how this show is designed and developed, I'm OK with that because it's a supernatural world and there are different rules.

My thoughts exactly.

Turns out we actually totally tagree on this!

Yup, I'm fine with giving S/E this bit and the sire thing from this episode -- poor dears, it's really all they've got to hold onto. The story is sooooooooooo Damon/Elena it's not even funny. And hah! Julie interviewed about this episode an essentially said that the only reason they've kept the hybrid story front and center was because of the Damon/Elena twist they were planning on telling here. Meaning that yeah, Damon/Elena is that big a deal that their story dictates others.

LOL, good thing I was already spoiled about the sire bond thing (speculation which turned out to be true it seems)! The sire bond storyline (well, what little I know of it, still haven't watched the episode) never bothered me. It means more angst and longing and I'm all for it. That's what you do with your endgame couple, nothing is easy. Also, yeah, it's not like it came out of nowhere, it was introduced last season and it's a nice twist. I'm not really worried about D/E being all about a sire bond, that would be a very lame cop-out and TVD (even when I had issues with its storylines) just doesn't do that.
Arabian: Damon & Elena20arabian on December 9th, 2012 08:50 am (UTC)
Hah, funny that after all that, we actually had the same thought about it, LOL!
Arabian: Damon & Elena(PR)04arabian on November 30th, 2012 12:06 am (UTC)
PART 2 --

As for what's coming up, I have a darn good idea about what's happening tonight, but the rest is my hopeful speculation based on no spoilers. I want Elena to be conflicted. I do NOT want Elena and Damon to get together. If they do, I won't complain because I do still mostly trust the show and I'm sure they have a plan. But Elena really is not ready. She needs to deal with Elena and be Elena without a boyfriend. Even if Damon gets pissy about it, which I'm OK with if he does, but also quite happy if he doesn't. OK because as mature as he's become, he still has a ways to go, and OK if he is, because, well, he's really come a long way. Personally, I'd like to see Elena boyfriend-less for most of the rest of the season. If she gets into a relationship with Damon this season, I want it towards the end of the season -- before whatever cure-humanity-based shenangigans are going to mess with that for next season, LOL! I'm fine with that. They aren't ready for each other yet. It's not their right now yet, it's really not.

(Feel free to not respond to this, LOL! becaus even reaction to speculation can be a spoiler when you know that peron's thoughts on the show, you know? I just wanted to kinda put it out there.)
vanimy: Elenavanimy on November 30th, 2012 03:15 pm (UTC)
Well now the episode has aired, if anyone's spoiled, it would be me! lol

Just wanted to say I agree with all of this. That's my wish too. That's why I wanted Elena to choose no one at the end of season 3 too (maybe she wouldn't have chosen anyone if it wasn't for the possible death of Damon and Stefan).

They aren't ready for each other yet. It's not their right now yet, it's really not.

Agreed, agreed and agreed!
Arabian: Elena03arabian on November 30th, 2012 03:27 pm (UTC)
from what I've picked up from the Julie interview post this episode I read (and yeah, I am now reading synopses and looking at stills again because if it's D/E no way I won't get spoiled, I learned that), and it looks like we're getting the best of that. Damon probably choosing to not carry on because he wants it to be real, and Elena sure that it is real which just makes my heart swell about a million sizes. And Julie talked about how Damon just wants to be loved for himself, for who he is and he thought he had that with Elena and I'm just all aaahhhh! because that's exactly it. SO IT.

I'm so excited for the rest of this season. :)

I still think she would have chosen Damon but it would have been the wrong choice because it wasn't their time. Not yet.
vanimy: Damonvanimy on November 30th, 2012 03:43 pm (UTC)
Damon probably choosing to not carry on because he wants it to be real, and Elena sure that it is real which just makes my heart swell about a million sizes. And Julie talked about how Damon just wants to be loved for himself, for who he is and he thought he had that with Elena and I'm just all aaahhhh! because that's exactly it. SO IT.

Tumblr got it right then, that's the speculation I read about before 4x07. Phew. It means now everything's out in the open, there is nothing else I'm spoiled about. Yeah, that's SO Damon and D/E, wanting it to be real, you know. We're probably going to have a lot of Damon feels in the next episodes. It's basically his worst nightmare, he finally gets the girl and it's like the universe is all like 'haha, just kidding, no one can love you for yourself, it was too good to be true.' My poor Damon. *sigh* The show stays consistent, Damon has to keep suffering, lol! I'm welcoming the angst myself!
Arabian: Damon09arabian on November 30th, 2012 03:50 pm (UTC)
No, that's speculation for episode 8 based on the episode synopsis and her interview. Which is based on 7 and 8.

We're probably going to have a lot of Damon feels in the next episodes. It's basically his worst nightmare, he finally gets the girl and it's like the universe is all like 'haha, just kidding, no one can love you for yourself, it was too good to be true.' My poor Damon. *sigh* The show stays consistent, Damon has to keep suffering, lol!

It's going to be AWESOME!!! Actually, it's not just Damon. If your name is Damon Salvatore, Elena Gilbert or Bonnie Bennett on this show... you will suffer and lose a LOT. A LOT LOT. A LOT LOT LOT. Not quite in that order, I think Bonnie's lost a bit more than Elena, but still, yeah, pretty bad. Others, eh, comparatively, they're pretty good.
vanimy: Damon/Stefanvanimy on November 30th, 2012 04:00 pm (UTC)
No, that's speculation for episode 8 based on the episode synopsis and her interview. Which is based on 7 and 8.

Oh, yes, I know it's after 4x07 but tumblr speculated on the next episodes and that turn of events way BEFORE 4x07 even aired. Hence me saying I was spoiled for 4x07 and beyond.

LOL yeah shows usually love to torture their favorite characters. We think of Damon or Elena easily but Bonnie's always forgotten. I haven't forgotten that episode when she was all alone at home, depressing over her grams and only Stefan of all people came to visit her (... to ask for help). Poor girl. Elena is surrounded by people who love her but Bonnie... she has no one. Sure, she has Elena and Caroline but both of them are more preoccupied with their own issues lately.
Arabian: Jeremy & Bonnie02arabian on December 9th, 2012 08:51 am (UTC)
I know, poor Bonnie. That's partly why I was bummed about Jeremy and Bonnie because they were there for each other in a way that others just didn't seem to have the time for because of all the crazy they were dealing with.