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15 March 2013 @ 10:55 pm
4.16 - 'Bring It On' (The Vampire Diaries)  
Whee! The Vampire Diaries is back in my life. And my Thursdays are once more complete. My thoughts (seriously not as long as usual, but still, yeah, you know me, there are definitely mucho words) behind the cut.

Well, this was a set-up episode if ever there was one. However, par for the course with The Vampire Diaries, it was a strong episode none-the-less with lots of meaty stuff to sink your teeth into (hehehe) and lots of questions raised.

As for set-up stuffies, first and foremost, of course, we had the obvious Klaus and Hayley stuff for The Originals. And it was easily my least favorite part of the episode. Sigh. I just don't find Phoebe Tonkin a good or charismatic actress, and Joseph Morgan is someone who shines when he can play against a really good/charismatic actor. I like the story idea behind their scenes, but meh, the actress. And while I did think the two actors had a spark of chemistry in their very first scene... that was in episode 03, quite a few episodes ago with only one short scene in between 09 episodes ago, so the two hooking up came out of nowhere. There was no heat, no build-up, and even worse was how Morgan played it. I don't ship Klaus and Caroline, but I think the actors have chemistry and that the writers have done a good job in building up the connection between the two.

However, with Morgan playing Klaus' interaction with Hayley practically identical to how Klaus is while wooing Caroline, it cheapened that Klaus/Caroline connection for me. He used the same flirty, sensitive tones, the trembling lips, the vulnerable gaze. I dunno, maybe it was deliberate... maybe it was to show that while he likes Caroline, no, he's not in love with her (even Klaus’ version of love). This is just Klaus' modus operandi when he wants to get laid? I dunno. I just do know that it came out of left field, wasn't very hot and all of their scenes were pretty fast-forward worthy--which is exactly what I did the second time I watched the episode.

Obviously this isn't it for Klaus and Caroline, otherwise we wouldn't have gotten Elena's line about Caroline having dirty thoughts about Klaus, but I do think--regardless of how inorganic the Klaus/Hayley scenes felt--we are setting up the conclusion of their story... at least on The Vampire Diaries. (For all we know, after TVD is over, if TO is still going, Candice Accola could join that show.) And the Klaus side of things wasn't the only set up for the dissolution of their story. We also had--excuse me a moment while I work on containing my squee!--Stefan and Caroline. Yeah, nope, squee is uncontainable. SQUEE!! Seriously, I watched that 'throwing her over his shoulder's scene a gazillion times with a huge grin on my face every time.

I love them so much! And I disagree greatly with people who claim that Stefan and Caroline look at each other without seeing the real person. Nope, that was Stefan and Elena. Stefan has no problem being honest with Caroline about his dark side, about what he's thinking and feeling, and the same way for Caroline. Just because they still like each other and see the best despite knowing the truth about the other doesn't make them dishonest in how they view each other... quite the opposite in fact.

That honesty is refreshing when looking at the past main relationships we've seen them both in which have all dealt with seeing/preferring pre-made images of who they are with or how that significant other views them. And the two of them being honest and open with another, Caroline thinking Stefan is hot (which we know, but hearing her acknowledge it again was great), Stefan willingly choosing to dance with Caroline, throwing her over his shoulder, her laughing and their dancing/talking/laughing together.... Ack, I was so in love with them. And I'm so, so, so happy that we clearly are sooooo going there. YES!

Of course, with Klaus' sooner rather than later departure, I'm wondering if Tyler will be coming back (sigh) and by that point, Caroline will have started to really fall for Stefan... thus leading to a triangle with the three of them. Could be. Rebekah certainly seems out of the picture for Stefan. Him making it clear that he would choose to give the cure to Elena over Rebekah seemed to be the final straw for Rebekah with him. It wasn't dramatic or petty, it just seemed like that acknowledgement from him gave Rebekah the closure she needed with Stefan. So I rather imagine that any thought of a together with him is gone from her mind now. Human or not. Which brings us to another bit of set-up... Rebekah deciding she doesn't want the cure after all. I think that little conversation with Damon is really going to get her thinking about the drawbacks of being human whereas up to now she simply looked at the upside.

The last bit of set-up was more of a raised question... what's the deal with Damon's here-to-fore unseen and unmentioned "buddy" Will? Considering that Damon and Elena are road-tripping (!!!) it to New York next week with the Damon/Will photo in hand, I'm thinking we'll get an answer to that sooner rather than later. Speaking of Damon and Elena. Very interesting what we saw in this episode, and in an odd way, I felt like it proved all over again that the sire bond never existed.

Aside from that very different sire bond obeisance in "Come All Ye Faithful" (in the same episode where we were reminded about Shane's hypnosis talent, a smoking bowl of something, his herbs??!??!!!) where Elena was very aware that she was going against what she wanted despite the fact that supposedly the sire bond is supposed to make you think you're acting of your own agency, we've never seen Elena do anything that appears to be NOT of her own agency. So what does this have to do with thinking that anything this episode proved the sire bond is not real?

Well, part of what convinced Stefan and Caroline that Elena was bonded to Damon was because she was SO into Damon, in a way she wasn't to anyone else, therefore, sire bond, right? Except, it wasn't the sire bond that did that. Couldn't have been. If it had been then Elena would have been SO into Damon as soon as she turned. Instead, it was her epiphany on the bridge where she allowed herself to accept that she didn't have to hate herself and what she wanted just because she believed that she should. Just because she was "a scared little girl." Now the sire bond is supposedly not working because her feelings are shut off-- but they're not. Not really. We are seeing her feel spite, annoyance, frustration. And more importantly, and to my point, Elena is still SO into Damon, and much more than she is into Stefan or anyone else. Why? Because she's just that much more into Damon and it has nothing to do with the sire bond, it's all about Elena stopped being afraid to admit that she wanted Damon.

That hasn't changed. But the sire bond supposedly is gone. Ergo, no sire bond.

Elena was just so much more Elena with Damon. And she's still clearly his girlfriend. She was in his shower. When Stefan brought her home, he put her in Damon's bed. When she was brought back to the house after nearly killing Caroline, she was in Damon's room. And just her overall interaction with Stefan vs. her interaction with Damon--with Stefan, all of her talking points with him were directed in the past tense, and she simply did not care what he thought about her or anything else. With Damon, everything was current, present-tense and she clearly cared what he thought. "Are you judging me?" She asked as if upset that she thought he was doing so. See, she cared.

She was also honest with him. With Stefan and Caroline she did and said what they wanted her to do and say to do/get what she wanted from playing the passive Elena in the first half, to being bitchy and flippant at the party once she revealed that she didn't care what they thought. And both acts from her were manipulations to do what she wanted--feed from vervain-free folks in the first part of the episode, get away from the judgy-eyes of Stefan and Caroline in the latter. I mean, originally, I did wonder if we were supposed to get that Elena was jealous when she saw Stefan and Caroline dancing. And she knew that's how Stefan would see it--as he totally did because his world does revolve around Elena at this point-- but after she took off, it was clear that she was just looking for an excuse so she could get away from them. That opened the door, and then the altercation with Liz gave her the opportunity.

On the other hand, with Damon she was just herself. She was honest, talking about how she felt, what she was thinking because she knows that she can completely be who she is in any given moment with Damon and he will accept her, thus her surprised upset when she thought he was judging her. Which, of course he wasn't. But Elena was wrong. He doesn't like her better like this. He just likes her. Period. This is just another side of Elena: an Elena who chooses to have fun and do what she wants without guilt. He likes that part of Elena. But he also knows that the part of Elena that tried to kill Caroline is not something that Elena will be comfortable with once she flips the switch. The other stuff? Feeding from cheerleaders, fighting, being a bit of bitch, dancing around and drinking, not giving a crap what others think? All that stuff is fine, and just a part of the whole package. But it's the whole package he loves. While he would have gotten a kick out of and enjoyed a fling with an Elena who was only like this, he wouldn't have fallen in love with her. He fell in love with the whole package, the compassion and heart, the survivor, the repressed fun girl hiding under layers of grief and denial. So, yeah, he doesn’t see this as a “better” Elena (or a “worse” Elena as Stefan does), but just another facet of the whole Elena, the person that he loves.

But Elena clearly doesn't fully get that. One could think she was manipulating him with that, but I don't think she was because of what she said to him earlier about how many times he tried to kill Stefan. Damon has *NEVER* truly tried to kill Stefan and vice versa. Damon would never actually try to kill his brother. Nope, no how, no way and Elena not realizing that shows that as much as she knows Damon and as much as she does love him, she still doesn't know him completely yet. He's still keeps his heart not fully revealed to her. But that's OK, they have time to get to know each other in all ways. It's part of the journey, and they're already way farther along than Elena ever was with Stefan.

I mean, dude, Stefan, he so does not know Elena at all. He just doesn't see ELENA. Like ever. He either sees this idealized version of an Elena he wants to see, the fallen female version of himself, or the bad, bad vampire side that is JUST LIKE Katherine. And, erm, no. Stefan. Elena is not acting like Katherine. She is not manipulating you sexually. She was not trying to seduce him or, as he said, sexually manipulate him. She was just changing clothes. Period. His presence there simply didn't matter. She wasn't coming onto him, she wasn't trying to turn him on, she was just done cheerleading, thus taking her cheer uniform off. And the nudity early on was for all of them--not just Stefan, but Damon and Caroline as well, throwing them off their game. It was not about sex. The only time we saw Elena even remotely playing with the physical, sexual side of things was when she was talking to Damon about wanting him, and him wanting her, standing close to him, eyes actually showing emotion and not a blank state, fully focused on him, her hands on his chest (sigh, would have liked a fuller shot of that, please!).

And that scene was really the only time I liked Elena in the episode. (The final scene was too short to really have much of an Elena feel.) Yeah, there were a few lines, moments I liked (her "I thought this was supposed to be fun" after Damon wouldn't let her kill the driver was hilarious, and her "I like your ribbon. / I want it." was creepily delivered), but overall, I didn't like Elena. She was a bitch, and not a fun bitch, but a mean bitch. However, I don't think we are supposed to like Elena like this. Girl's as much a basket case as she was in the last episode, it's just a different side to it. The switch is off, but it doesn't make the emotions go away, it just represses them. And in that scene with Damon in his (their?) room, those repressed feelings were the closest to the surface. There was more life, animation in her when it was just the two of them than at any other point. Because she loves Damon. Pfft, sire bond.

Which all came from the mind of one Caroline Forbes, and boy, has Elena clearly had issue with Caroline over this that she never really dealt with. Her non-stop bitchiness towards Caroline ("the queen," "butting into people's lives" etc.) showed that there are a lot of latent issues at play here. I mean, she was just awful to Caroline. Forget the mean comments, the letting her fall hard during the cheerleading, the snide looks, the attacking of her mom (!), but dude, she was SO going to stake Caroline. She was going to kill her. Dayum! Hopefully, we will get some meaty resolution with these two because, yeah, I-S-S-U-E-S!

OK, some randoms --

- I did like the Elena/Caroline fight for a couple reasons. Yes, technically Caroline is stronger because she's an older vampire, but Elena kicking her ass made perfect sense because (a) Elena's switch is off, she doesn't care, Caroline's isn't and she does so therefore Caroline was holding back, Elena was not, (b) Elena's reminder that Alaric--the vampire hunter!-- trained her. Niiice. I also liked how it opened the door to some of those issues (both that Elena has with Caroline, and Caroline’s own denied Klaus-issues).

- I was tired and cranky (computer woes) when I first watched this so, yeah, I totally didn't realize it was Silas stealing the blood. Oops me!

- I was annoyed at the Liz/Stefan scene at first because why you deny me Liz/Damon bonding time, show?!, however, I realized that we got the Liz/Stefan scene so they could bond over their mutual love for Caroline, and anything Stefan/Caroline-related works for me so hard! :D

- Hah! Nice explanation of the water situation and I'm sure that Klaus and Rebekah's houses have fancy filters too.

- So Damon showed Elena the road trick, of course. Hee.

- Matt Donovan: The world's best ex. Love him. And ooh! He owns a mansion now. Hah! Awesome. (If for very sad reasons. RIP, Carol.) Still, go Matty! (But, hmm, how will he pay for upkeep though? I hope Tyler left him some dough too.)

- So Rebekah said that Shane was dead, but the last time we saw him he was still very much alive, so I don't know that we can completely count the good professor out yet. After all, while Shane may have been in pretty bad shape, he was found by a vampire who could easily cure him. And Rebekah wants answers about Silas, Katherine and the cure. Shane clearly knows a lot of stuff. And Rebekah clearly doesn't trust Damon. So it's not outside the realm of believability that Shane's alive and Rebekah's keeping that information (and his knowledge) to herself.

- Yet another 'Elena gets the cure, becomes human, she dumps Damon and lurves Stefan foreva!' anvil. So not happening. Either Elena getting the cure, or loving Stefan--well, I'm sure about the latter, but the cure? I dunno. Were it not for The Originals description about Elijah protecting Klaus from his enemies, I'd be mostly sure that Elena will get the cure (Damon is my other guess), but I really don't want it to be Klaus. I actually do really want Elena to get the cure. And a pony! (Actually, I don't want a pony. How about... a meelion dollars?!?!)

So, good episode, and mostly a bridge episode. Not OMG!Great, but I think it's one that when watched during a marathon will play a lot stronger because of its placement. In other words, I'm not disappointed at all and I still love this show like uber-lots! :D
 
 
 
Matt: Ghidorahghidorah15 on March 16th, 2013 03:27 am (UTC)
...no way. There is no conceivable way that I, a Livejournal lurker who's read all of your stuff on The Vampire Diaries and thoroughly enjoyed your theories and reasoning especially in favor of Delena, am the first to post on this write-up.

No, really, I am? Great Scott - that's a first.

At any rate, I hope you don't mind, Miss Arabian - your analysis of and passion for this show are truly remarkable and infectious. Keep it up! :)
Arabian: Damon04arabian on March 16th, 2013 03:32 am (UTC)
Aww, thank you so much!!

Well, this one went up way later than usual. I wasn't in the best mood last night, so I wanted to rewatch it and give it my full attention.

Glad you enjoy my TVD ramblings. :D
(no subject) - ghidorah15 on March 16th, 2013 03:35 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 16th, 2013 03:42 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Anonymous) on March 16th, 2013 04:36 am (UTC)
I do love your write-ups. It's one of my favorite things about new episodes airing. They are so addictive and spot-on.

I like/find interesting you said we're not supposed to like this Elena. I think you're right, but from my own perspective once I like/fall for a character I pretty much can't like them. Dislike or disagree with their choices? Sure. But write them off or condemn them (not saying you are, at all), not so much. I can't even work up the disapproval and anger everyone else seems to this season for Caroline. I can't help but love her. Also, this switched-off Elena kind of reminds me of book!Elena, who was pretty selfish and bitchy and self-involved in the beginning. There was still some show-Elena mixed in there, but I know most people didn't like her. Even weirder the girl with the blue ribbon she fed on reminded me of how book!Elena would look-pretty, blonde, particularly arresting blue eyes, and had a thing for hair ribbons. I don't know it was so weird.

Anyway, I was curious on your opinion about the Caroline/Elena thing. A lot of people are ''of course she's lashing out at Caroline instead of the Salvatores.'' Almost like Elena's not supposed to be mad/on the outs with the other two thirds of the main triangle.
Arabian: Elena11arabian on March 16th, 2013 05:21 am (UTC)
I think the fact that she showed so little reaction to Stefan was telling. She just doesn't care. But it was with Damon and, on a different level, Caroline that she did react to. Sure, she wasn't pissed at Damon, but Damon hasn't been judging her life choices and butting in non-stop as Caroline has. So when Caroline started getting on her case again it was like nothing Elena can do is good enough for Caroline. And the fact that she was reacting to her shows that, again, yeah, she doesn't have enough feeling for Stefan anymore to care about the judgmental crap from him, but she has such history with Caroline. It's quite fascinating, I think.

When I say that I don't think we're supposed to like Elena, I don't mean as in turning away from liking the character overall, but rather that we aren't supposed to be cheering on this person she's acting like. She's not fun and entertainingly bitchy like Katherine is written as. She's mean and uncaringly hurtful. I've never read the books, but I've heard about what Elena's character was like in them so it doesn't surprise me to read what you've said, but it kinda heightens my desire to never, ever read these books, LOL!

Sorry took so long to get this write-up posted! Glad you liked it, though. :)
(Deleted comment)
Arabian: Damon & Elena22arabian on March 16th, 2013 05:21 am (UTC)
'Sokay, it happens. :)
Bogwitch: TVD - Damon Won't Tellbogwitch on March 16th, 2013 10:31 am (UTC)
I'm not sure who I want to get the cure, tbh. I'm not sure I want Elena to have it though.

This stealing blood bags business has me confused. Why would Silas want blood bags rather than just drain it from people?

Edited at 2013-03-16 10:31 am (UTC)
Arabian: Damon15arabian on March 16th, 2013 01:24 pm (UTC)
I just want Elena to have the cure because (a) I want her to be with Damon as a human, choose to be with Damon while human, and (b) I want her to make the choice to be a vampire. Although, I suppose the latter effect could be achieved if she has access to the cure (and provided of course they know the sire bond isn't real) and chooses to NOT take it.

Re: Silas, well, he's smart. Super-smart and he's clearly aware of what's going on in the current world (through his seeing through other peeps, I guess, ala Shane) so he knows that going around and killing a crapload of people would cause a lot of problems, so he just grabs the bloodbags. Makes sense to me.
(no subject) - aurora7948 on March 22nd, 2013 03:19 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 24th, 2013 05:54 am (UTC) (Expand)
prettygirl5130: pic#119743568prettygirl5130 on March 16th, 2013 03:43 pm (UTC)
I kind of like humanity off Elena, but I do think she'll get eyeroll worthy as time goes on. So, hopefully they have her start to feel something soon.

It's nice to see Elena saying what she feels, when she feels it, and going after what she wants. I know it seemed like Elena was a little more "natural" in her scene at the end with Damon but unfortunately I just think she wants to sleep with Damon and she knew that she needed to be semi-nice and real with him in order for that to happen. She obviously is trying to get a fix on some of her basic needs. Throughout the entire episode she wanted blood and whomever got in her way with that plan, she would bitch out. THen she wanted to have fun, so whomever got in her way or judged her for wanting that got bitched out. Now, I think the next need is to get laid. I mean, it's not a bad thing...it's just a really honest thing. Elena is a very sexual being and for the most part she's been going through a bit of a dry spell. As soon as she got laid from Damon it was all taken away. I'm still not sure if she and Stefan had sex in the woods, but for sure nothing happened after that since she started pulling away. During season 3 she didn't get laid at all. So, yeah, I think Elena was trying to lure Damon in and have sex with him...he's the one she wants and she's going after it, just like what she implied in that bedroom scene, she was never able to go after what she always wanted ie: Damon. So that's probably her next goal that she's after. After that, who knows what Elena will be after...probably the cure or Silas, or Katherine...or maybe all of them.

This episode was littered with a ton of character introspection...it really was. I think that bedroom scene was really important, especially to the fandom, because Elena really did tell Damon the truth of what happened in season 3. She was scared and I do believe part of that came from what Damon is and what he chooses to be. Damon is a vampire, and he chooses to act like a vampire. HE's made no qualms about that fact and yes Elena has pushed him to be the better man and not kill humans to feed and to be capable of caring about certain individuals, most of whom are somehow connected to Elena. But, at the end of the day and we saw this in 4.4, Damon loves being a vampire and with vampirism comes that power over humans, with it comes not having to care about anyone but yourself and your needs. Vampirism can be a very selfish lifestyle and I think Elena has pushed Damon to be selfless and to care. Without that push, who knows what could happen to Damon and I think Elena was making a point in saying that with her humanity off he will no longer have to care. He will no longer have to be a better man. She can now choose him every day because Damon being Damon no longer bothers her. There will be no expectations from her as long as he holds no expectations for her. Sure, this sounds great for Damon in the beginning but I think as time goes on and maybe as early as in the next episode, Damon will see that he needs that push from Elena. He needs those expectations and that he really does want to be the better man.

Oh and Caroline and Stefan were so freaking cute I wanted to pinch their little cheeks....SQUEE!

Klaus and Hayley...um okay.. that was totally out of left field. It felt like they were on their own little show and since they are both involved with the spinoff maybe that's what the writers were going for.
Arabian: Damon & Elena27arabian on March 16th, 2013 07:29 pm (UTC)
Honestly, it feels like we're almost watching something different here with regards to Elena, LOL! First of all, I don't see Elena as a sexual character (let alone very sexual). Yes, she does enjoy sex, but we don't see her play very sexual. Katherine does, not Elena. As for she and Stefan, no, they did not have sex this season, that was just them cuddling. The few times they tried to have sex, Elena got sick. The actors/writers, Julie Plec, all made a very big deal about Elena's first vamp sex and it was with Damon in 4.07.

But going back to me not seeing Elena played as a sexual being, I didn't see her trying to get with Damon in that scene at all. First off, based on the timeline, it's only been a few weeks since she and Damon had sex so it hasn't been a huge drought for her (admittedly, it had been at least six months before then, but again I don't see Elena as a sexual character (although, she clearly enjoyed it plenty lots with Damon). Also, and more specific to this scene, she wasn't coming on to Damon. She wasn't matter-of-fact when talking about them wanting each other (as she had been matter-of-fact when talking to Stefan about their sex life), but she wasn't talking about wanting as in wanting to have sex, but rather wanting to be with one another as a couple.

So, yeah, I didn't see that scene that way at all. Yes, it was more sexual compared to the scene with the four in the beginning, and the one with Stefan, but that's just because those scenes had zero sexuality to them, and this one with Damon had an emotional intimacy that was missing in those earlier scenes.

On the other hand, I totally agree with your take on Elena in your second paragraph absolutely in terms of admitting that she was scared, and believing that Damon would be happier with her like this not caring about Damon's less-than-haloed side. However, I don't think Damon for a moment feels that way. Part of why he loves Elena is because her belief in him has allowed him to realize that he does have that capability. An Elena who doesn't care about hurting others is not the Elena he fell for, so I don't think even for the short run does he agree. Sure, he'll go along with her, but it's because he's trying to get her to feel better so she has a reason to turn the switch back on. And as I said in my post, Damon loves and accepts all of Elena--so he doesn't dislike or judge this side of Elena--but it's a part of the whole and he loves the whole of Elena. This Elena is not the whole, so no he's not happier with this version of her, not for a second.

Obviously, I agree 100% about Stefan and Caroline (SQUEE!) and Hayley and Klaus (meh).
bangel_4e: buffy-giftbangel_4e on March 17th, 2013 01:30 am (UTC)
Sure, he'll go along with her, but it's because he's trying to get her to feel better so she has a reason to turn the switch back on. And as I said in my post, Damon loves and accepts all of Elena--so he doesn't dislike or judge this side of Elena--but it's a part of the whole and he loves the whole of Elena. This Elena is not the whole, so no he's not happier with this version of her, not for a second.

Thank you for these words.

I was pissed when they showed Damon not answering to her after she said she liked him better this way. I was like -.- say something...exactly as I felt in 4x08.
But that was my first reaction, the initial "rage". Unfortunately I'm a very impulsive person and I should reflect more before I rant so I came to the realization of those words you said in a second moment.
It should be very obvious, I guess I just focus on the actual words and THEN I take everything as a whole and it makes sense.
(no subject) - arabian on March 17th, 2013 04:00 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bangel_4e on March 17th, 2013 02:23 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on June 9th, 2013 07:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - prettygirl5130 on March 17th, 2013 02:00 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 17th, 2013 04:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - prettygirl5130 on March 17th, 2013 04:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on March 17th, 2013 04:54 am (UTC) (Expand)
faith5by5_1013: Doctor Who: Doctor/Rose: Foreverfaith5by5_1013 on March 16th, 2013 08:28 pm (UTC)
I always enjoy reading your reviews of this show.

While he would have gotten a kick out of and enjoyed a fling with an Elena who was only like this, he wouldn't have fallen in love with her. He fell in love with the whole package, the compassion and heart, the survivor, the repressed fun girl hiding under layers of grief and denial. So, yeah, he doesn’t see this as a “better” Elena (or a “worse” Elena as Stefan does), but just another facet of the whole Elena, the person that he loves.

I agree completely!

I was so confused when Elena commented about Damon trying to kill Stefan. I just kept thinking "Did I miss something?" Because I couldn't remember him actually seriously trying to kill his brother. So I'm glad you confirmed that I'm not just forgetting something (I can be very forgetful about some stuff).

I rolled my eyes when Stefan suggested Elena was trying to manipulate him when she was changing. She wasn't flirting or anything. I just saw that as Elena not really feeling shame right now and she doesn't see any problem with getting naked in front of people. It's as simple as that.
Arabian: Stefan01arabian on March 16th, 2013 11:55 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I hope we see/get something from Damon next week that confirms what we think about how he feels about this 'new' Elena.

And obviously I agree about Stefan's inability to get what Elena was doing. Oh, Stefan!
Frust-sheep: sheep: *aww*frust_sheep on March 16th, 2013 09:31 pm (UTC)
Yep, especially a *SQUEE* for the Stefan and Caroline scenes. :D Those two were so cute in that episode. *lol*
Arabian: Stefan & Caroline04arabian on March 16th, 2013 11:55 pm (UTC)
Stefan and Caroline were so adorable. Love them!
bangel_4e: elena-bloodbangel_4e on March 17th, 2013 01:25 am (UTC)
I don't have much time now so I'm just gonna say:

I was a mess after this episode cause I always see dramatic things and spin everything into negative, I always expect worse.
I made a really drama-queen entry in my journal I'm a bit ashamed of but then I calmed down and began to see things in a more positive light.
I thought they made a mess with Delena but then I really really thought about this episode and got what they were trying to tell to the audience and I don't mind it now.

I'm skeptical about a few things but I'm choosing one again to trust the show....even if they do stuff I strongly don't agree with.

I'll add another comment tomorrow but at least I got over my super-depressed-I'm-so-mad-at-the-show thing.
Arabian: Elena06arabian on March 17th, 2013 04:13 am (UTC)
spin everything into negative, I always expect worse.

I know it's hard, but maybe going spoiler-free and not reading what others say/speculate about future episodes will help with that. It's why I've decided to go spoiler-free (and am avoiding tumblr). I've been SO happy about this season because I've read no spoilers and no speculation based on any episode that hasn't aired. And then I got spoiled on tumblr for episodes 16, 17, 18 and 19. They are small, but every single one has me imagining the worse... and my fears for 16 were totally off the mark. (I was sure that Elena was going to say something technically honest, but brutally painful to Damon, but that didn't happen... at all!)

And remember, your fears were off-mark too! You were so afraid (and getting so upset before the break) that everyone was going to hate on Damon and blame him for turning the switch off and that didn't happen at all. In fact, we even had Caroline using the whole "it will make Damon happy!' schtick to keep Elena in line. Yay! So maybe you should try what I'm doing. I'm really so much happier this season not knowing spoilers (and prior to this season, I've been like THE biggest spoiler whore for every show I'm obsessed with) because I think we've all been burned so much in the past that we build up these negative speculations based on our fears. I dunno, it's really working for me and my reaction to the return to reading the slight spoilers/speculation for just these few episodes proved that to me undeniably.

As I said in my other response to you re: this episode. I don't see how anything with Damon/Elena was anything other than positive because it showed so completely how *much* there is between them that is just so not there with Elena and anyone else (including Stefan). And I love it!
(no subject) - prettygirl5130 on March 17th, 2013 04:47 am (UTC) (Expand)
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vanimy: Doctorvanimy on March 17th, 2013 10:48 pm (UTC)
So... this episode was kinda blah to me. There was some interesting stuff and boring stuff and stuff I didn't like and other stuff I couldn't care less about.

-Klaus and Hayley. First, Klaus having sex with anybody is something I really have no interest in seeing, lol! Hayley is still as annoying as ever.

Also the way they're pushing the spinoff is grating on my nerves. I don't want TVD to turn into advertisement for the Originals. I'm not going to watch that show so don't push it down my throat, thank you.

-I felt kind of numb throughout the episode. Even seeing Jeremy's face didn't make me feel emotional. Am I turning into Elena??

-Speaking of Elena, even though this new version of her is interesting to watch, I think you're right, we're not supposed to like this version of hers. It's not even a funny version or a Katherine version, it's a numb version. It's quite depressing to watch actually. So I didn't feel this Elena myself. The only scene I really enjoyed her in was the fight scene with Caroline. I'm sorry but I really liked how she kicked Caroline's butt. She had it coming.

Even though I'm glad she didn't kill Caroline, obviously.

-I didn't feel Damon/Elena this episode either. I don't know what the writers are trying to do with the sire bond. So it's gone because Elena no longer has any feelings for Damon or it never existed at all?

....

I'm sorry, I just don't care anymore. Whether it's gone or it never existed at all, this storyline's a mess and dragged on for too long. Old!TVD would've straightened this one out a long time ago.

About the last scene I didn't like what it implied, that Damon liked this version of Elena better. Although you could take his silence as disapproval, IDK. Damon/Elena lacked their usual spark to me in that scene for the first time... ever.

-I might be weird but I felt a little spark between Stefan and Elena on the other hand. Not that I'm fond of it but I think Elena's eyes lightened up a little bit more when she was with Stefan outside the school. *shrugs* I really don't know where TPTB are going with this triangle so...

-Speaking of Stefan.... I loved him in this episode. Is it because he actually cared about something beside himself?? IDK but I really enjoyed him, welcome back on my good list, Stefan!

-Stefan/Caroline gave me all the feels this week. Seriously they were so adorable! Ditto on the throwing her over his shoulder scene. And Stefan had *gasp* fun with her!! I really like where the writers are going with them.

-I even had old Matt/Caroline feels in this episode. Or maybe it's just Matt being his usual adorable self, IDK.

-Caroline/Tyler is ANNOYING. He's gone, we get it and Caroline is a moron for not getting it sooner. The phone calls were getting on my nerves and I actually liked Elena's snide remark about it. My sentiments exactly.

-I missed Bonnie. I'm sure she would have been better at trying to keep Elena under control than Caroline. I wonder if Bonnie wasn't the one stealing all the blood for Silas which is why she was off screen all episode.

-That last scene with Damon and Elena in the car at the end looked silly. Did the CW run out of budget? What the hell were those special effects?? lol

Arabian: Damon & Elena16arabian on March 18th, 2013 12:38 am (UTC)
PART 1 --

I'm not rah-rah-rah about Klaus/Hayley, and I think that's for two reasons. First off, Phoebe Tonkin sucks, period. What others see in her is completely beyond me. However, I do think that JoMo and her have chemistry. The problem with them (for me) was that it really came out of nowhere and that I do blame on the writing. (Which I rarely do on this show.) It did feel like set-up for TO. And that bothered me, not because I have no intention of watching TO. I do and I'm quite looking forward to it. It bothered me because it could and should have been done organically into the TVD universe and it wasn't. But when a show mostly gets everything right (and I truly believe that TVD does), I won't complain too much about this.

I don't see them "pushing the spinoff" this huge amount, though. There were a few throwaway lines about New Orleans in past episodes, and if we didn't know about TO (and it taking place there, Tonkin being a part of it), it would just play as something coming up on TVD. This was the only time where it felt like they were pushing story for the spinoff. And from a business point of view, I get it. My issue, again, is that it wasn't organically done. But in order to be organic we would have had to have seen a lot more of Tonkin in the last seven episodes, so yeah, so not going to complain at her lack, LOL!

I agree that this version of Elena is interesting, but I definitely do not believe we are supposed to like her. In fact, sarcasticcheese mentioned that Julie Plec pretty much confirmed that on twitter. They aren't writing an Elena that they want fans to get behind, but rather using this to get some truths out there (Elena/Stefan), some issues out there (Elena/Caroline) and the depth of feelings (Damon/Elena).

this storyline's a mess and dragged on for too long. Old!TVD would've straightened this one out a long time ago.

I can't disagree with this strongly enough. Not liking the sire bond storyline doesn't make it a mess, it just makes it a storyline not liked. We've gotten issues come out of it (from Stefan, Caroline, Damon and Elena), we've gotten Elena pushing over and over again how much she loves Damon, we've gotten highs and lows of the characters on all fronts, we've gotten exploration of what Damon and Elena will face internally and externally. And by dealing with a bunch of this external stuff now (mostly from Stefan and Caroline), once the bond is over (if real and Elena still wants to be with Damon) or revealed to not be (thus revealing that Elena's feelings for Damon were real all along), either way, Caroline and Stefan will no longer have any leg to stand on regarding Damon and Elena and it not being what Elena truly feels/wants.

Right now, they're going along with all that Elena "feels" for Damon because they're convinced that it's not really what Elena feels because of the sire bond. But they're seeing it, they're hearing Elena talk about it, they're seeing those feelings in action. And they're convinced that once the sire bond is dealt with, things will go back to "normal." When that doesn't happen, they will both be unable to deny that THIS is real because they exhausted all of that during the sire bond.

TO BE CONTINUED--
bangel_4e: elena-runbangel_4e on March 18th, 2013 12:20 pm (UTC)
Phoebe Tonkin sucks, period.

She does. BIG TIME.


Right now, they're going along with all that Elena "feels" for Damon because they're convinced that it's not really what Elena feels because of the sire bond. But they're seeing it, they're hearing Elena talk about it, they're seeing those feelings in action. And they're convinced that once the sire bond is dealt with, things will go back to "normal." When that doesn't happen, they will both be unable to deny that THIS is real because they exhausted all of that during the sire bond.

I seriously can't wait for this to happen. No matter which one is true, I wanna see this so much!

Edited at 2013-03-18 12:22 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - arabian on March 19th, 2013 05:43 am (UTC) (Expand)
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Arabian: Damon & Elena14arabian on March 18th, 2013 12:39 am (UTC)
Part 2 --

As for "Old!TVD would've straightened this one out a long time ago" -- no. The sun and moon curse was introduced in episode 03 of season 02. It wasn't revealed to be fake until episode 19. Katherine not in the tomb wasn't revealed until episode 14 of season 01. Alaric's ring causing the issues wasn't revealed until episode 16 of season 03 (issues introduced big-time in episode 04, but there beginning in episode 02). The sire bond wasn't introduced until the end of episode 07. The show always has a storyline or two that runs through a good chunk of the season, you don't like it (I get that), but the sire bond is this season's storyline. And we don't have the full story with it yet, we still don't know what how it's going to play out.

I didn't like what it implied, that Damon liked this version of Elena better. Although you could take his silence as disapproval

To me the implication was quite clear that Elena didn't know what the heck she was talking about because the second thing she said in the scene, the first thing *about* Damon was "how many times have you tried to kill Stefan?" TOTALLY WRONG. Damon has never tried to kill Stefan. Ever. Unless you're an idiotic Damon-hater who ignores canon, every viewer knows that this is absolutely not the case. So Elena was revealed in her very first comment to Damon about Damon as being wrong.

So her saying that to Damon at the end was just the bookend to that earlier comment. She doesn't quite get Damon yet. And Damon's silence wasn't agreeing with her, nor was it disapproval. It was consideration. About EVERYTHING she had just said--including that Elena just admitted that she wanted Damon (before she turned) and that it was her fear that kept her from being with him. And consideration that, yeah, he did like her like this, absolutely true, but that she didn't quite get everything he loves about her. Wrong, like she was about him ever trying to kill his brother.

I think there was a spark with Stefan and Elena because Nina and Paul do have chemistry, it just is not terribly strong and the two of them in 'we have twu wuv foreva' mode is boring. But whenever they are playing opposites, they are much more sparky (why Stefan/Katherine are so much more interesting and chemical than Stefan and Elena). Of course, Damon and Elena work whether they're in love or in hate or in between, but Nina/Ian chemistry is way better than Paul and Nina chemistry.

Obviously, I agree completely about Stefan and Caroline. THEY ARE ADORBS!!!

I didn't have any M/C feels, I think it was Matt being the WORLD'S BEST EX!!

-That last scene with Damon and Elena in the car at the end looked silly. Did the CW run out of budget?

Huh? That scene looked no different than Stefan and Katherine in the car near the end of 3.09, and Damon and Katherine in 3.05, Damon/Elena in 3.03. They were just sitting in the car, and then took off driving. I'm muy confused by this comment, LOL!

I don't know, I don't understand how any Damon/Elena fan/TVD fan can't be loving this season. It wasn't a great OMG! episode, but it was a great set-up episode and I'm really excited to where we're going from here. I'm sorry you're not. :( I don't know. I know that in the past there have been a few episodes where I was really negative feeling going into them that if the episode wasn't an OMG!episode, I wasn't able to pull myself out of that negative mindset and every interpretation was dogged with pessimism. Based on your thoughts on 4.15, maybe you were in that frame of mind going into this. I just know that I was expecting some potential negativity with D/E, but for me instead, this episode proved just how strong Elena's feelings for Damon are, how real because with him we saw the closest non-repression of the real Elena. It was Damon who brought that out in her. :shrugs:
archangel_blood: Elena mirrorarchangel_blood on March 18th, 2013 03:23 pm (UTC)
I didn’t particularly love the episode, but I’m not unhappy with it either. Yeah, a bridge episode is a good way to put it.

The Klaus/Hayley hook up was weird and I agree, not very hot. Also, Phoebe Tonkin annoys me, so I might be a bit biased here.

Stefan and Caroline on the other hand...
Yeah, nope, squee is uncontainable.

Lol, this. So squee-worthy! I actually liked Stefan in this episode (what’s happening to me?!) even though the poor guy just showed once again that he has absolutely no idea what he’s dealing with where Elena’s concerned.

On the other hand, Elena was pretty much in the same boat with Damon, or close. Surprisingly, for all their innate understanding, she does have some amazingly wrong notions about him.

Hey, if Shane’s really dead, could that possibly be the reason why the “sire bond” is gone? I mean, if we assume that it was his hypnosis causing Elena to obey Damon’s direct commands, and if hypnosis is anything like compulsion, which breaks when the originator dies… I don’t know, just a thought that occurred to me when I first heard that he’s supposedly dead.

I didn’t mind no humanity Elena at all, I found her amusing at times. And I do think the show made a pretty big deal of how she acted so differently around Damon and then everyone else. She really was much more herself with him, but then again, isn’t she always?

The fact that she explicitly stated that she remembers having good sex with Stefan but doesn’t care about it in the slightest, while minutes later it was made perfectly clear that humanity or not she still wants to be with Damon, I mean, are people seriously complaining right now? This. Is. Huge. HUGE.

Also, I found it kinda adorable that she was so determined to get Damon’s confirmation that he is not judging her and he still likes her :D Careful, Elena, your emotions are showing.

So all in all, an okay episode, and I’m fine with the D/E scenes we got. Very much looking forward to the next one.
Arabian: Damon & Elena21arabian on March 19th, 2013 04:14 am (UTC)
I didn’t particularly love the episode, but I’m not unhappy with it either. Yeah, a bridge episode is a good way to put it.


I loved it as much as I love just about any TVD episode (minus a very few that don't get the love setting).

! I actually liked Stefan in this episode (what’s happening to me?!) even though the poor guy just showed once again that he has absolutely no idea what he’s dealing with where Elena’s concerned.

On the other hand, Elena was pretty much in the same boat with Damon, or close. Surprisingly, for all their innate understanding, she does have some amazingly wrong notions about him.


This, this, this. Stefan don't know Elena, and Elena--at least repressed-emotion Elena--don't know Damon all that well either.

could that possibly be the reason why the “sire bond” is gone?

Could be, but then my question is how do we know? Or rather, how would they find out?

I didn’t mind no humanity Elena at all, I found her amusing at times. And I do think the show made a pretty big deal of how she acted so differently around Damon and then everyone else.

I didn't mind her, and found her amusing at times too, also, I just didn't like her, if that makes sense. I know it's part of a bigger story, so I'm fine with it. And yes, she was so different with Damon, how everyone (ie, viewers) couldn't see that is beyond me.

I mean, are people seriously complaining right now? This. Is. Huge. HUGE.

I KNOW!! But, sigh, you know this fandom. Double sigh.

I found it kinda adorable that she was so determined to get Damon’s confirmation that he is not judging her and he still likes her

Hee! :D
(Anonymous) on March 19th, 2013 06:40 pm (UTC)
Love your episode write-ups! It appears you have some new followers. :-) I’m new to Vampire Diaries but have seen all the episodes and read many of your past postings. Your thoughts are incredibly insightful.

As seems to be the usual, everything you wrote is perfectly on the mark.

Elena was just so much more Elena with Damon. And she's still clearly his girlfriend.

This was one of my favorite things about this episode -- Damon so clearly taking responsibility for Elena. In the last episode viewers were made to think, briefly, that Damon was running from Elena, scared to be there for her after Jeremy died and using the excuse to look for Bonnie while Stefan comforted her. But he knew what she needed - her best friend. He said that he would look after her, take care of her until she could get her humanity back and we are seeing that in spades. He’s just out of sight when Elena encounters the driver on the road, making sure that she doesn’t do anything she will later regret. (Like how they revealed that.) He’s reluctant to let her go to school but agrees at Stefan and Caroline’s insistence, knowing he should look for Katherine since he is too old to go to school with her. When Stefan tells him the sire bond isn’t working, Damon tells Stefan to get her home until he can get back. LOVE THIS. And, of course, he is taking her to New York with him (yay!!). Another nice reveal that he is keeping her close.

There is a slight possessiveness, subtle guardianship thing going on that, combined with their sexual chemistry, is a little provocative. It really became evident (to me) after she discovered she was sired. How cute was petulant Elena sitting on Damon’s bed taking her punishment (“How much longer am I supposed to sit here?” Damon – “Let’s just imagine a time when you don’t want to kill your best friend.”) That was so funny. Almost as if he put her in timeout. Well, he IS over 170 years old compared to her 18.

We’re given a sense that, sire bond or not, she is his and he is hers. Even Stefan seems to defer to Damon regarding Elena, and after acknowledging the sire bond is no longer working. Hmmm.

Part of why he loves Elena is because her belief in him has allowed him to realize that he does have that capability. An Elena who doesn't care about hurting others is not the Elena he fell for, so I don't think even for the short run does he agree. Sure, he'll go along with her, but it's because he's trying to get her to feel better so she has a reason to turn the switch back on. And as I said in my post, Damon loves and accepts all of Elena--so he doesn't dislike or judge this side of Elena--but it's a part of the whole and he loves the whole of Elena. This Elena is not the whole, so no he's not happier with this version of her, not for a second.


Yes, Yes, YES. Totally, you nailed it. Almost from the beginning Damon has wanted Elena to care for him. So her comment “It doesn’t matter how bad you are because I don’t care” won’t be good enough for him. He wants her to be as wholly, totally invested in him (which is why he was trying so hard to break the sire bond) as he is for her. I think he will be the one to figure out how to get her to turn on her humanity back on, just as he did Stefan. When it comes to being a vampire, Damon just knows .

Again, your posts are amazing. I look forward to reading them almost as much as I look forward to the next episode. Thanks for sharing!
Arabian: Damon & Elena23arabian on March 20th, 2013 03:40 am (UTC)
Love your episode write-ups! It appears you have some new followers. :-)

Thank you. I'm not seeing any new posters here, but I always appreciate hearing from new viewers, so thank you for popping up. :)

I’m new to Vampire Diaries but have seen all the episodes and read many of your past postings. Your thoughts are incredibly insightful.

Thank you. What can I say? I just have sooooooooooooooo many thoughts about this show, LOL!

This was one of my favorite things about this episode -- Damon so clearly taking responsibility for Elena. In the last episode viewers were made to think, briefly, that Damon was running from Elena, scared to be there for her after Jeremy died and using the excuse to look for Bonnie while Stefan comforted her. But he knew what she needed - her best friend. He said that he would look after her, take care of her until she could get her humanity back and we are seeing that in spades. He’s just out of sight when Elena encounters the driver on the road, making sure that she doesn’t do anything she will later regret. (Like how they revealed that.)

Yup. I completely agree. It was really made clear just how much Damon is looking out for her, but he's not being suffocating about it.

There is a slight possessiveness, subtle guardianship thing going on that, combined with their sexual chemistry, is a little provocative.

Yeah, I'm really surprised at any D/E fan not loving them in this episode.

How cute was petulant Elena sitting on Damon’s bed taking her punishment?

Very cute. :D

We’re given a sense that, sire bond or not, she is his and he is hers. Even Stefan seems to defer to Damon regarding Elena, and after acknowledging the sire bond is no longer working. Hmmm.

Yup! I didn't comment on it in my post (wish I had, oh well) but I certainly noticed how Stefan basically acknowledged that Elena's love for Damon was based on HER feelings, not on the sire bond when he suggested the bond not working now because her feelings are cut off. Yeah, I do think Stefan realizes it even if it's mostly subconscious at this point.

Almost from the beginning Damon has wanted Elena to care for him. So her comment “It doesn’t matter how bad you are because I don’t care” won’t be good enough for him. He wants her to be as wholly, totally invested in him (which is why he was trying so hard to break the sire bond) as he is for her. I think he will be the one to figure out how to get her to turn on her humanity back on, just as he did Stefan. When it comes to being a vampire, Damon just knows.

Agreed, and I totally hope that it is Damon.

Again, your posts are amazing. I look forward to reading them almost as much as I look forward to the next episode. Thanks for sharing!

And again, thank you so much. I look forward to hearing from you in the future again. :)

Edited at 2013-03-20 03:40 am (UTC)