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29 April 2016 @ 08:13 am
7.19 - 'Somebody That I Used to Know' (The Vampire Diaries)  
Ugh, stupid schedule. Sorry. But hey, it's up before the new episode airs!

Bonnie was the lead in the A-story, while Stefan (the real Stefan) was the focus of the B-story—and that was certainly interesting as the writers gave me what I was asking for in the last episode indeed. But first let's turn to Bonnie.

OK, I take it back, yeah; Bonnie and Enzo (Kat Graham and Michael Malarkey) do have chemistry. Actually seeing the two fall in love, having those scenes play out over the three years with the two of them basically in captivity, showed the chemistry. However, I still contend that I don't see how this couple is endgame though when we only get their journey to love in flashbacks showcased in one episode.

Also, how they fell in love doesn't necessarily work in the real world. They fell in love in isolation. Bonnie fell in love with an Enzo who was essentially her "savior," and he held all the power. He was also the only person she felt she had on her side. Caroline was in Dallas, living her new life. Elena is off in a coffin playing Sleeping Beauty. Matt hates all things supernatural. Bonnie and Stefan were never particularly close and have been drifting further apart since Elena left and Bonnie became team!Damon. And then there's Damon… the best friend that Bonnie is really, really upset with.

Oh, yeah, he's also the same guy that Bonnie is bonding with Enzo over—yet another building block of their love story. So what happens when Bonnie forgives Damon and their besties again? Because you know that's going to happen. At the beginning of the episode, Bonnie wasn't talking to Damon. Halfway, through she is even if it's only in snarky insults. And by the end, she's already expressing words of anger and pain. Definite progress. Oh yeah, she's going to forgive him. And way, way more quickly than Enzo and in a much deeper and everlasting way than Enzo ever could. Will Enzo understand that or feel betrayed? Because he still can't understand what Damon did sixty years ago.

And I'm sitting there, going, 'Dude, Damon would have DIED with you. That wasn't the plan.' He literally had to turn his switch off in order to walk away and he kept that switch off for the next sixty-some years. Would Enzo really have done any differently than Damon? I highly doubt that he would have stayed and burned to death trying to helplessly get Damon out of the cage had the positions been reversed.

But Enzo has a victim complex (understandable given his history), and I wonder when Bonnie forgives Damon if Enzo will turn on her, making her choose sides. Hmm… possible. We'll see. Again, they fell in love in isolation without any of the real world situations that would make or break a relationship so we'll see.

As for the other relationship that we didn't see happen but was discussed (or rather discussion of was most avoided), let's turn to Stefan and Caroline and Alaric.

Firstly… YAY! CAROLINE IS BACK! YAY! (And congratulations to Candice King and her husband on their baby.) My precious Caroline is back. Yay! Now, oh Stefan. Stefan, Stefan, Stefan. He is being quite the major douchebag that I talked about the writers letting him be in the last episode with Valerie. For real. I mean, dude, really? Alaric is TOTES totally right about Stefan. But, sadly, I'm also TOTES team!Stefan because I just don't give a flying fig newton about this version of Alaric Saltzman anymore. I mean, who the hell is this guy? He's not MY Alaric Saltzman. He's not Damon's best friend. He's not Elena and Jeremy's guardian. He's not the guy who came to Mystic Falls that I fell in love with. Nope, he's the dude who came back from the dead messed up by Esther after his time on The Other Side, fell in love with Jo and basically sucks.

And just about every time he's on screen he proves that he sucks. I mean, why couldn't he stick up for Damon to Stefan? Would it have been that hard? He's pissed at Stefan, I get that, so be the snarky, awesome Alaric we remember by needling Stefan by throwing all that Damon has done for Stefan in his face. Or better yet, be a snarky, awesome badass and throw the fact that he's got Caroline in his face. Why have they made Alaric so... blech? And bland? And lame?

Ugh! What am I even talking about? I said it above. This isn't Alaric. This character that Matt Davis is playing hasn't been the Alaric Saltzman I loved from the moment he came back in season 06. He just has the same name and is played by the same actor. The writers lost the pulse on the character and what made him so awesome. *sigh* That ship has sailed.

So Stefan douche away, I'm still on your side. At least I still love you and I get where you're coming from. "Alaric" is just blah. And we do know that Stefan *was* protecting Caroline... he just went about doing so in a silent, suffering, shitty non-communicating way. But, hey, this is Stefan we are talking about. Plus, Caroline and Stefan actually truly love each other. Also, so completely a marriage of convenience on Caroline's end for the girls. Justice of the peace wedding! Bwah! Stefan's so right… as if Caroline Forbes would EVER get married like that if she was in love. Hah! As for Alaric—he has just convinced himself that he loves her, and *I* remain convinced that he has done so for the girls as well, and to protect his own heart.

Isobel.
Jenna.
Jo.

He ain't going through that again. No siree, Bob. Hey, I guess they figured they'd keep some remnant of Alaric in character from pre-death days. So nice.

Speaking of characters being in character... Damon, my beloved Damon. How do I love thee? So very much. He was a supporting player in Bonnie's story, but I wanted to comment on a few specific Damon-related things if I might.

Damon killing Beau was awesome and perfect and totally the RIGHT thing to do. (Erm, "right" in the landscape of The Vampire Diaries world. Hehehehe.) Proving once again that Damon Salvatore GETS SHIT DONE! (Because he is awesome.) He may be the "bad guy" for it, but when push comes to shove, Damon does what needs to be done even if he gets judged the bad guy while others get the huzzahs for hesitating.

Rayna wouldn't hand over her last life to save Bonnie's life unless they finished off her kill list (more on that later) so therefore gone goes Beau's heart. Damon has his list of people who matter and in order of priority: Elena, Stefan, Bonnie are at the top of that list… in that order, followed by the rest of the gang, probably Jeremy, Alaric, Matt, Caroline, Enzo, Tyler—if he's asked nicely.

And can I just say I love that we got the reiteration from Damon to Enzo the same that he'd say to Stefan from seasons ago that he may be hated for doing the "bad" things, but he'll save lives in doing so. Yes, yes, I'm sure there are people out there clutching their pearls because he said that about Elena to Stefan and he's saying it to Enzo about Bonnie now (triangle alert!), but that wasn't the point. It wasn't about being in love. It wasn't about a triangle, or getting the girl, or proving oneself better.

It goes back to what I said in the last couple of write-ups. Damon had opened himself up to/for Elena to being that better person. Yes, this thing he did wasn't "good" (ripping Beau's heart out), but it was a "good thing" and he did it for someone other than Elena. He's stepping outside of that Elena/Stefan only comfort zone. AND he's letting other see that he's willing to step outside of that Elena/Stefan only comfort zone. He's willing to show that he *will* do his version of good, he *will* protect, he *will* love others. That is a huge step for Damon Salvatore.

OK, now randoms –

- So Rayna is not long for this world; sigh. I like(d) her. Damnit!

- OK, so yeah, Bonnie has been taken the pills for as long as Mary Louise. Got it.

- Damon blaming Enzo for Bonnie's illness isn't really fair, but it makes sense. Enzo gave her the pills that came from the Armory for goodness' sake. However, Enzo *was* trying to protect her. On the other hand, the Armory was still researching their effects on witches. Shouldn't that have been a little hint that maybe, just maybe it wasn't quite the best protective idea.

- WAH! Lucy is dead! Stupid Virginia St. John killed Lucy! NOOOOOOOO! I loved her!!!! NOOOOOO!!!!! Not cool!

- So uhm, Alex's sister, after four years, is still in the basement somehow? Oh, yeah, that's not creepy at all.

- I didn't find Damon being yucked out by Bonnie/Enzo as him jealous, but rather like an older brother who was all 'No, do not want to see my sister like that, especially with him! Need brain bleach!'


- So my idea that season 08 would be about tracking down the Hellstone vampires seems a bit premature now... hmm! Unless there are one or two big bads that wind up getting away? I mean, that was quite a few pieces of paper at the end there, right?

- I miss Matt.

So good episode. I think they did a really good job filling in Bonnie and Enzo's love story. Damon remains my favorite forever (shocker, I know!) Stefan was a douche this episode (I DON'T CARE!), Alaric is whatever (Blech!) and my precious Caroline is back. All is good and we've only got two more episodes left. WHEEEE!!!!
 
 
 
tj2013tj2013 on April 29th, 2016 06:05 pm (UTC)
I really liked your analysis of Alaric. I so loved him, and now I barely tolerate him. Esther and the other side have changed him forever, and the result is - how did you phase it? - blech...

Man, I wanted Lucy to come back. I've waited 5 seasons to just to hear she is dead? How cruel is that? I always wanted her to team up with Bonnie again.

That they showd Bonnie and Enzo falling in love was nice. I actually expected them to just leave it as a fact we have to accept. My friend, with whom I am discussing TVD constantly, said Bonnie falling in love with Enzo was kind of a Stockholm-Syndrome. He abducted her (well, he rescued her, but still), he was her only tether to the real world, she was lonely, he was charming... The way you put it we will have to see the couple in the real life, interacting with the others, and then we'll see how strong their love is. And yes, her forgiving Damon will be quite an obstacle.

I don't think Rayna will give up her life so easily, even if - and that's a huge if - the gang finishes off her kill-list. As soon as all the voices and images in her head are gone, I suppose the deal's off.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts! And I hope you feel better by now.
Arabian: Damon05arabian on April 30th, 2016 02:28 pm (UTC)
I really liked your analysis of Alaric. I so loved him, and now I barely tolerate him. Esther and the other side have changed him forever, and the result is - how did you phase it? - blech...

Yeah, they've really done a disservice to the character. And it bums me out because Alaric and Damon work SO WELL together. And we saw in that one episode that he and Enzo also work well together. Also, Alaric and Bonnie, and Alaric, Damon and Bonnie work really together, so the dynamics are THERE. USE THEM, show, PRETTY, PRETTY PLEASE! (The latest episode has given me hope, though. Eternal optimist here.)

Man, I wanted Lucy to come back. I've waited 5 seasons to just to hear she is dead? How cruel is that? I always wanted her to team up with Bonnie again.

*sigh* I KNOW!!!

That they showd Bonnie and Enzo falling in love was nice.

Yeah, it was really well done.

I actually expected them to just leave it as a fact we have to accept.

Oh, I didn't at all. As soon as I saw how they did the first episode after we caught up which was the Stefan and Valerie episode I figured that's how we'd do the catch-ups. We'd get flashback episodes for all the important stories. (I even mentioned it in that write-up.)

My friend, with whom I am discussing TVD constantly

I. AM. SO. JEALOUS! I have NO ONE to discuss it with really. I used to have a couple of people but one isn't into the show pretty much at all anymore, the other we don't talk at all anymore, the third was never into the show like me and works a lot so we can't talk, a fourth--well, she's the one I mentioned at the top of the last episode's write-up. So yeah I have no one to talk to about the show. It makes me really, really bummed. :(

said Bonnie falling in love with Enzo was kind of a Stockholm-Syndrome. He abducted her (well, he rescued her, but still)

I don't agree with that. He truly did save her life. He was keeping her alive, not keeping her prisoner. She could have left at any time. That's a HUGE distinction.

he was her only tether to the real world, she was lonely, he was charming...

Yes, he was, but that was the situation, not one that he forced her into.

The way you put it we will have to see the couple in the real life, interacting with the others, and then we'll see how strong their love is. And yes, her forgiving Damon will be quite an obstacle.

Yeah.

I don't think Rayna will give up her life so easily, even if - and that's a huge if - the gang finishes off her kill-list. As soon as all the voices and images in her head are gone, I suppose the deal's off.

Well, I've seen the new episode (as have you by now, no doubt) so we saw what happened.

And I hope you feel better by now.

I do, thanks. :)
tj2013tj2013 on April 30th, 2016 02:52 pm (UTC)
I. AM. SO. JEALOUS! I have NO ONE to discuss it with really.

I absolutely know what you mean. Said friend is pretty much the only one. Funny thing is, I had no one to talk to during Season 1 and 2 (all these FEELINGS!!!!), and during Season 3 then we noticed each other's posts on a fan forum and guess what? We are living only 10 miles from each other. Must have been the travellers (or the universe) drawing us together.

I love coming to your website - I enjoy every single post and it's a shame so few people have been commenting anymore. Keep it up!

Edited at 2016-04-30 02:56 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Damon12arabian on April 30th, 2016 03:00 pm (UTC)
FYI: Finally responding to older comments (I gave instructions on how to italicize!)

I absolutely know what you mean. Said friend is pretty much the only one. Funny thing is, I had no one to talk to during Season 1 and 2 (all these FEELINGS!!!!), and during Season 3 then we noticed each other's posts on a fan forum and guess what? We are living only 10 miles from each other. Must have been the travellers (or the universe) drawing us together.

SO LUCKY!!! I wish I could find a fellow fan who lived close. That would be AMAZING! Happy for you.

I love coming to your website - I enjoy every single post and it's a shame so few people have been commenting anymore. Keep it up!

Thank you. I do appreciate your continued support. And I figured I do enjoy doing these and I love the feedback I get from you guys. :)

ETA: Ep 20 write-up is up already, BTW!



Edited at 2016-04-30 03:01 pm (UTC)
Mattghidorah15 on April 29th, 2016 07:31 pm (UTC)
Yep, Stefan was indeed a douche, but at least this time, I got his viewpoint. Like you, I can't be bothered to care about this pseudo Alaric, especially when he's trying to pretend that he and Caroline (boy, did they make us wait for her return) have any sort of shot together. That's going to be a messy triangle to sort out.

As far as the situation with Bonnie goes, while she is obviously angry with Damon, and understandably so, I also think she's in a form of denial, trying to convince herself that she doesn't care about him anymore. While I did appreciate seeing how she and Enzo came together (took you long enough to show it, writers), I, too, have my doubts about it lasting.

Damon, of course, remains the most dynamic and entertaining character on the show, ever the Snark Master and ever the man willing to get his hands bloody to save his friends. Hopefully, Season Eight will show the other characters finally getting it through their heads that they can't use him as a scapegoat any longer. They've all done dark, morally reprehensible things for the sake of each other.

And yeah, I knew you wouldn't be happy about Lucy being killed off-screen. I wasn't happy, either. *sigh* Is there anything sadder than wasted potential?
Arabian: Bonnie05arabian on April 30th, 2016 02:39 pm (UTC)
Yep, Stefan was indeed a douche, but at least this time, I got his viewpoint. Like you, I can't be bothered to care about this pseudo Alaric, especially when he's trying to pretend that he and Caroline (boy, did they make us wait for her return) have any sort of shot together. That's going to be a messy triangle to sort out.

Exactly. I really have nothing else to add to this because I agree with it all. (Well, except for the Caroline part--I mean, what could they do? Candice King had a baby, they had to give her her maternity leave, LOL!)

As far as the situation with Bonnie goes, while she is obviously angry with Damon, and understandably so, I also think she's in a form of denial, trying to convince herself that she doesn't care about him anymore.

Oh, totally. I agree. She's pissed at him. I get it. I also do expect the letter to be read at some point. I'm waiting for that.

While I did appreciate seeing how she and Enzo came together (took you long enough to show it, writers). I, too, have my doubts about it lasting.

Yeah, that is one of the reasons, I'm not seeing them as endgame. I still have my eye on her and Matt. {shrugs} We'll see.

Damon, of course, remains the most dynamic and entertaining character on the show

How is he so awesome? Love him long time!

ever the Snark Master and ever the man willing to get his hands bloody to save his friends. Hopefully, Season Eight will show the other characters finally getting it through their heads that they can't use him as a scapegoat any longer. They've all done dark, morally reprehensible things for the sake of each other.

I have to believe it's coming. I HAVE to.

And yeah, I knew you wouldn't be happy about Lucy being killed off-screen.

I've been periodically bringing her up since her sole appearance. {pouty face}

I wasn't happy, either.

Cuz you have good taste.

*sigh* Is there anything sadder than wasted potential?

Not much.
Mattghidorah15 on April 30th, 2016 06:37 pm (UTC)
Heh, I didn't mean it like that regarding Caroline. I know her actress was on maternity leave and there was no getting around it. I just mean they really made her absence noticeable so that when she did return, it had that much more impact.
Arabian: Bonnie05arabian on April 30th, 2016 08:31 pm (UTC)
Well, I think the mistake they made was in having Bonnie missing in episodes the same time that Caroline was. I still don't understand the logic behind that. :shakes head:
Bogwitchbogwitch on April 29th, 2016 10:12 pm (UTC)
>> I wonder when Bonnie forgives Damon if Enzo will turn on her, making her choose sides

I somehow doubt Enzo's plot would be that interesting.

>>The writers lost the pulse on the character and what made him so awesome.

I am not so sure that just it. It almost feels like they have gone out of their way to keep him from what people liked about him. He hasn't been much of an active hunter, Elena and Jeremy have gone and he's barely been around Damon at all. Is he going to get killed off again at some point?

I confess am getting very confused, what with your schedule, the show schedule and the show playing in Canada first (a belated thanks for that heads up btw, I was wondering where the spoilery gifs were coming from a day early!), I never know what episode I am talking about now! Like this thing about the pills - I think the reveal is in this ep. Unless I forgot about something earlier on, I don't think it has worked terribly well as a slow reveal what the purpose of the pills was. Instead of a slowly unfolding mystery, I have just been thinking I missed something.

>> Lucy is dead! Stupid Virginia St. John killed Lucy!

RIP Lucy. Still it's nice to know other supernaturals are out there having a bad time of it too, which obviously makes Caroline and Alaric's set up inevitably doomed.

>>Alex's sister, after four years, is still in the basement somehow?

And wasn't it just obvious where that was going to end up?

Edited at 2016-04-29 10:12 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Alaric03arabian on April 30th, 2016 02:45 pm (UTC)
>> I wonder when Bonnie forgives Damon if Enzo will turn on her, making her choose sides

I somehow doubt Enzo's plot would be that interesting.


I think that Enzo's plot is FINALLY beginning to be interesting. It only took 3 years!

>>The writers lost the pulse on the character and what made him so awesome.

I am not so sure that just it. It almost feels like they have gone out of their way to keep him from what people liked about him. He hasn't been much of an active hunter, Elena and Jeremy have gone and he's barely been around Damon at all. Is he going to get killed off again at some point?


Well, after episode 20, I now once again have my hopes up. Which brings me to your next point: the schedule.

I download the episode Thursday night and watch it because, hell yeah, I'm going to watch it as soon as possible. However when I write this, I write it as if most have watched the Friday airing, but I TRY to get the write-up BEFORE Thursday night just in case people do download/watch them Thursday like me. I just wasn't able to for this episode. I am really, really going to try and get the write-ups done between Saturday-Monday from now on. (Look, episode 20? Written already!)

Like this thing about the pills - I think the reveal is in this ep. Unless I forgot about something earlier on, I don't think it has worked terribly well as a slow reveal what the purpose of the pills was. Instead of a slowly unfolding mystery, I have just been thinking I missed something.

That was confused as hell. They made it seem in Bonnie's first episode back that she'd only been taking the pills for a few weeks so I totally thought she'd be OK, so I was kinda confused why Enzo was so upset because Bonnie wasn't showing any signs and I figured it was just because he couldn't get to Bonnie right away. But then the flashback episode with Enzo revealed that, nope, Bonnie had been taking them for three years after all. It was not well done.

>> Lucy is dead! Stupid Virginia St. John killed Lucy!

RIP Lucy. Still it's nice to know other supernaturals are out there having a bad time of it too, which obviously makes Caroline and Alaric's set up inevitably doomed.

Oh, yeah! Still, waaah! Lucy!

>>Alex's sister, after four years, is still in the basement somehow?

And wasn't it just obvious where that was going to end up?


I'm sorry for someone who seems so competent and smart, Alex is kinda stupid.
(Anonymous) on March 5th, 2017 01:21 pm (UTC)
RE: 7.19
"OK, I take it back, yeah; Bonnie and Enzo (Kat Graham and Michael Malarkey) do have chemistry." - Ha, I suspected you might change your mind, that's why I didn't comment on you earlier mentioning that they didn't haha

"However, I still contend that I don't see how this couple is endgame though when we only get their journey to love in flashbacks showcased in one episode." - I guess this proved to be a correct conclusion *sigh* Unless there's some twist I'm unaware of as of yet.

"Also, how they fell in love doesn't necessarily work in the real world. They fell in love in isolation." - I'd say it's rare, but it does happen, especially if we consider cases of more metaphorical isolation, ie. people who only have each other, no family, no friends, etc. As for the show, I think this was really brilliant to do that isolation scenario, because this was virtually they only way to make that particular love story work and become so believable in such short period of on-screen time.

"Would Enzo really have done any differently than Damon? I highly doubt that he would have stayed and burned to death trying to helplessly get Damon out of the cage had the positions been reversed." - That is a very interesting question. I think both Enzo and Damon believe that Enzo would've acted differently, and... that's it. I don't think either of them would be able to provide details on what this would exactly entail.

"I mean, who the hell is this guy? He's not MY Alaric Saltzman." - Yes, this will go down as one of the
saddest developments.

"Damon has his list of people who matter and in order of priority: Elena, Stefan, Bonnie are at the top of that list… in that order, followed by the rest of the gang, probably Jeremy, Alaric, Matt, Caroline, Enzo, Tyler—if he's asked nicely." - I think you got that list right and fortunately crossing people off that list apparently started and ended with Tyler ;)

"Yes, yes, I'm sure there are people out there clutching their pearls because he said that about Elena to Stefan and he's saying it to Enzo about Bonnie now (triangle alert!)" - I'd say the writers actually went out of their way to make sure there would be no undertones. Even if they toyed with the idea in their heads before they 1000% abandoned it by 7x01 already.

"He's willing to show that he *will* do his version of good, he *will* protect, he *will* love others. That is a huge step for Damon Salvatore." - Very true. You're right.

"I didn't find Damon being yucked out by Bonnie/Enzo as him jealous" – Nah, no jealousy there. I actually thought it was very clear that they just made him think of Elena, of Elena's absence.
Arabian: Damon&Bonnie01arabian on May 2nd, 2017 12:13 am (UTC)
Re: 7.19
"OK, I take it back, yeah; Bonnie and Enzo (Kat Graham and Michael Malarkey) do have chemistry." - Ha, I suspected you might change your mind, that's why I didn't comment on you earlier mentioning that they didn't haha

Well, as you know, I do think they have chemistry, but it's about as much chemistry as do Nina and Paul so that means that they have chemistry but it's nothing really to write home about in my opinion. So, uhm, yeah.

"However, I still contend that I don't see how this couple is endgame though when we only get their journey to love in flashbacks showcased in one episode." - I guess this proved to be a correct conclusion *sigh* Unless there's some twist I'm unaware of as of yet.

Well, you know now.

"Also, how they fell in love doesn't necessarily work in the real world. They fell in love in isolation." - I'd say it's rare, but it does happen, especially if we consider cases of more metaphorical isolation, ie. people who only have each other, no family, no friends, etc.

It does, but honestly it still really does bother me especially when you take into account the fact that time-wise this took place fairly shortly (as in a few months--if not less) after Bonnie came back from being COMPLETELY isolated with only herself for MONTHS, and then before that a few months with Kai, and then before that, a few months with only Damon. And on top of that she was without her best friends (Elena and Caroline) for the vast majority of nearly four years. So, yeah, it really did bother me.

As for the show, I think this was really brilliant to do that isolation scenario, because this was virtually they only way to make that particular love story work and become so believable in such short period of on-screen time.

And that to me, frankly, was a bad decision. And I say that loving this show ridiculously. However, if you have to create a plot-point directed narrative that further isolates an already horrifically isolated character just to create a love story... well, then maybe you shouldn't create that love story. Especially when they had FIFTEEN EPISODES with which to create the love story and two seasons (including season 07 and 08) to build them up. It was totally possible.

I think both Enzo and Damon believe that Enzo would've acted differently, and... that's it. I don't think either of them would be able to provide details on what this would exactly entail.

Because Damon just blames himself and thinks the worst of himself so he never throws that question at Enzo therefore Enzo never has asked himself that question. Had he done so, if he were being honest, he would have to admit that he would have done the same as Damon. And THAT is something that could have BEAUTIFULLY come out of the show actually writing and showing a relationship between Bonnie and Enzo as opposed to restricting it to one episode and then the two just talking ad nauseum (in season 08) about their twuest of all wuvs. Why? Because of Bonnie and Damon's friendship, but nope, an opportunity wasted. *sigh*