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10 February 2012 @ 05:04 pm
3.14 - 'Dangerous Liaisons' - Take Two (The Vampire Diaries)  
So, a follow-up to last night's post about the latest Vampire Diaries episode. (I'll be working on responses throughout the night to that post.)

Okay, so I've had time to vent and whine, and I'm willing to allow a less furious take on my main issues with last night's episode.

1.) RE: Elena's reaction to Damon's "I love you."

Everyone and their dog knows that Damon loves her, but it's unspoken for the most part (deathbed confessions notwithstanding), and this time, in the middle of a SITUATION Damon decides to just throw it in the conversation. As if he is her boyfriend, and he has that right to do so. I love the boy dearly, but actually, he does not. Despite how she does (unknowingly) encourage the murky nature of their relationship, Elena has made it verbally (and mostly physically) clear that she's not planning on going there. So, while I didn't like it, I can see where that quick, hurtful response from Elena came. She wasn't thinking, she is only eighteen and Damon loves SO fully, heavily and completely ... and it's just not something she's ready to deal with even in her own private thoughts. So to have it blurted out like that had to shake her up. And it did, and it led to her responding in a less than ideal manner.

2.) RE: The assumption that Damon has gone off and is self-destructive boy.

When Damon is hurt, Damon reacts ... badly. He kills people, he destroys things, he hurts anyone in his path ... as recent (in her point of view) as snapping Ric's neck, and chomping on Bill Forbes. Elena hurt damon ... badly. The next thing she saw him do was throw someone off of a balcony. She didn't see Kol playing deadly hand-grip with Matt's hand. She didn't know that Kol had plotted with Rebekah earlier to kill Matt. And in the quick explosion of Damon throwing Kol off the roof, it is believable that Matt was in as much shock as everyone else (and also, he was in pain so his head wasn't all there) so I can buy Elena being ushered off to deal with the fall-out and/or slipped away from the house to escape any potential fallback. Thus, she wouldn't know. Thus, she would -- not knowing the Matt-in-danger aspect of the equation -- just go with what she knows. Damon was hurt; Damon reacted rashly and went into self-destruction mode because that is what Damon has done in the past.

3.) RE: Elena ignoring EVERYTHING that Stefan has done and begging him to FEEL something.

Elena is, first and foremost, a denial girl. This was established in the Pilot. She stood in front of the mirror and practiced her denial speech. Elena is *especially* denial girl when it comes to Stefan. She doesn't know him truly, not all of him, and she obviously has yet to accept this fact. Stefan has been a complete asshole to her, but that's not HER Stefan, so she hsa clearly decided to separate HER Stefan from that jerk masquerading as Stefan in her mind, and in her heart. So all of the horrible things he's done, she's simply not holding against him when he acts like HER Stefan.

Now, I do not believe that she told him that she kissed Damon to make him jealous and get him back. I think she genuinely was trying to be honest and up-front. Did she want a reacion out of him? Of course, she did. She didn't get one, however, and so that was that. But since she told him, that did open the door to Stefan choosing (and I do believe it's been a subconscious thing) to open himself up again and to be HER Stefan: The Stefan that she loves and believes in and has rose-colored glasses on when she looks at him, so she doesn't look at Damon. And in this episode, it was the first time that she saw HER Stefan as the evening progressed, and so that girl that blindly loved him saw a chance to recapture the happy euphoria of pretense amidst the crazy that she shared with him, and she jumped on it.

Look at point one: She is only eighteen. Add to that, Stefan is her first love and they didn't just break up, they were ripped apart (by Stefan's choices, but still), and so the chance to get back HER Stefan, and get back to that bright spot in her life is completely understandable. I don't like it; I don't want it. I much prefer my strong, awesome, kick-ass Elena, but it *does* make logical, character-based sense and I've always maintained that if it makes sense character-wise (even if it's bad for my couple), I can accept it. I was too upset as a Damon-girl, and Damon/Elena-girl to see that last night. But this IS in character.

And I look at it this way, Damon did a lot of growing season 02 (as Elena has done this season), but he also regressed, two steps forward, a few steps back, etc. and so on because that's how growth (that eventually sticks) generally works. Same thing with Elena too. She's regressing. I don't like it, I don't want it, but I didn't like it or want it with Damon either, but it was necessary to get him to where he's getting now. SO MUCH BETTER!

sumeria added another option:

[...] it didn't feel to me "romantic". Elena's been going through some rough shit. Shit that I imagine she wishes she didn't have to feel/think about *all the time*. She said that she's been trying not to feel, and it's not working. It felt to me like her trying to empathize with where he is, and trying to reach out to a friend that she doesn't want to see destroy himself forever. " And upon reflection of this take, I recalled -- and this is key for a show that LOVES its parallels -- Elena did the EXACT same thing to Damon when she was trying to get through to him in "Homecoming" (hands-on-the-face) and she wasn't trying to be romantic there at all. She was trying to a be a good friend getting through to him. It was the same thing here. The difference? It worked with Damon; it didn't with Stefan. So if that's a parallel (and I certainly flashed back to that "Homecoming" scene), well, Damon = 1, Stefan = 0 because it worked with Damon.
4.) RE: Stefan respecting Elena's choices, and Damon not.

This frustrates me because Stefan doesn't respect Elena's choices unless he wants to get in her good graces/keep her happy/dig at Damon. And respecting her choices should not equal walk into a situation where you very well COULD DIE! Damon, on the other hand, DOES respect Elena's choices ... when they do not involve her walking into a situation where she very well COULD DIE! However, for some reason, this is a crazy delusion that Elena (and consequently Stefan and Damon) have been living under. Elena, although I love her dearly, is now very much showing signs of hypocrisy that I did not see in "Ghost World." She (and Stefan) make choices for others all of the time (generally out of love, and in Stefan's case, out of revenge too). For some reason, they both seem to think that it's okay when *they* do it, but when Damon does it, he's an controlling dick who doesn't respect the agency of others. Again, sucky, I don't like it ... BUT, it is very, very much in character for both characters. Elena is not perfect and this is one of her biggest imperfections.

5.) RE: Caroline and her ability to forgive and love everyone except for Damon.

I'm just going to copy what rose_marie_rose said here in reaction to my episode reaction post because she did really nail it for me.

Caroline has been interacting with Damon for two plus seasons, there's a lot of history there. There's a lot of patterns to break out of (plus again, the lifetime pass for her, in my opinion). But even though Klaus has done WAY WORSE things than Damon, she hasn't been around him really at all. So even though intellectually she knows he's all evilly, her first experiences with him PERSONALLY have not been that cut and dry. So there are no real patterns established. She doesn't really know how to react to all this.

And as much as she had moments of softening with Klaus, she was still giving him shit left and right, and she was still fighting for Tyler's freedom. Plus Klaus is hardcore pursuing her, telling her she's the beautifullest girl in all the land, and I think that's something that's really hard for someone with Caroline's insecurity/relationship issues to resist completely. [...] And I honestly think Caroline is wearing blinders where Stefan is concerned, because of her loyalty to him as a friend/mentor to her. And I have to assume that she's talking about hypothetical-fixed-in-the-future-Stefan. Who, because of her abusive past with Damon, she still prefers as a romantic prospect for Elena. Caroline has ZERO objectivity in this situation, and for me, that's her prerogative till the end of time when it comes to Damon.
This works.

In conclusion ...

It does ALL make character-based sense. And if it's all leading to the following: Elena waking up and realizing that she can't jump back into that pattern with Stefan because he's more than just *that* guy she loved. And, Elena starting to acknowledge that what's been happening with Damon is a two-way street, and whether she wants to admit it or not, she HAS been encouraging his love for her with her words, actions, reactions and responses to him. On top of that, someone somewhere does FINALLY need to cut Damon some slack, and give Stefan some WTH! for his actions ... because these two things NEED to happen. If it takes Damon walking away for a bit and letting them deal with issues/problems without him, and him staying mostly out of Elena's life and having her realize that he does matter to her for the former to happen, okay then! As for Stefan ... really, show, Stefan has got to face some REAL consequences for his actions this season. I'll even let the killing all the innocents with Klaus (to protect those he loves) and stuff he did under compulsion slide, but:

- Choosing to kill Andie as he did to make a point.

- Walking away from Damon, Elena and Mystic Falls once free of compulsion because he's a selfish bastard who couldn't deal.

- Treating Elena HORRIBLY to prove that he didn't care.

- Starting a war with Klaus, and setting the events in motion that led to Jeremy nearly being killed.

- Force-feeding Elena his blood, and threatening to kill her on the very spot where her parents died (for revenge!).

He needs to be held accountable (and apologizing for feeding Elena his blood, but not acknowledging what came after was particularly loathsome, in my opinion). There HAS to be consequences for his actions, actions that he WILLINGLY chose to take that hurt many people. Just because he's feeling bad about it now doesn't excuse those actions. There must be fallout. We'll see.

So, there's my much calmer, more reasoned reaction to the issues I had with last night's episode. Let's see where we go from here. :)
 
 
 
x5valex5vale on February 10th, 2012 10:17 pm (UTC)
Gotta say, I totally agree with you.

I have ranted a lot in my review, but basically I have never felt too much pissed off at Elena. I was way more worried about Damon...

Edited at 2012-02-10 10:36 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Ian Somerhalder04arabian on February 10th, 2012 11:41 pm (UTC)
Good, I'm glad that I helped. :)
Pam Vpamsblau on February 10th, 2012 10:34 pm (UTC)
BLESS THIS, I was so angry, your post made me realise some things. It helped me in the Elena department concerning Stefan! Thank you!<3
Arabian: Rebekah02arabian on February 10th, 2012 11:42 pm (UTC)
YAY! Glad I was able to help, it certainly helped me working through it. :)
jedi_of_urth: kittyjedi_of_urth on February 10th, 2012 10:48 pm (UTC)
1) I agree with these thoughts. She responded forcefully, more so that she meant to, because he'd pushed the issue just a bit too far. She's slowly moving towards admitting what's happening between her and Damon but she's definitely not there yet. I don't hold it against him, but he also didn't know the added stress she'd just taken on. She was in no place to deal with the Damon of it all just then.

2) I felt like Elena knows she's guessing there. Like, with what she knows it's a pretty safe bet, but it's still a guess. And no I don't think she knows everything that was going on. Or, even if she does know Matt's involvement (and not all of that I'm sure, seeing as no one but Rebekah and Kol know they were going to kill him) she could just be simplifying it with Stefan because she doesn't want to get into it with him too.

3) I suppose it could make sense in character, but this one actually does frustrate me.

4) I also feel like that was an oversimplification. Because both boys can respect her choices and both and be controlling when they feel they know better. But I'm not sure if the characters are oversimplifying or the show is.

5) I don't know that Caroline has seen that much of bad Stefan; and yes considering her history with Damon it's particularly hard for her to put him as the "good brother". But mainly I think she's sort of seeing Stefan as 'not so good Stefan' instead of 'bad Stefan' right now, either way he's still better than Damon as far as she's seen.

And while I would have a lot of problems if she were swooning all over Klaus, so far she's just a bit charmed but mostly still not accepting him. They're going to have to tread carefully if this plot develops further, but so far I don't mind.
Arabian: David & Billie Dancingarabian on February 11th, 2012 12:18 am (UTC)
She responded forcefully, more so that she meant to, because he'd pushed the issue just a bit too far. She's slowly moving towards admitting what's happening between her and Damon but she's definitely not there yet. I don't hold it against him, but he also didn't know the added stress she'd just taken on. She was in no place to deal with the Damon of it all just then.

Exactly. It was just REALLY bad timing on his part, but understandable where he was coming from too.

I felt like Elena knows she's guessing there. Like, with what she knows it's a pretty safe bet, but it's still a guess.

Yeah, exactly, she basically jumped to that assumption because ... that's what Damon does.

I suppose it could make sense in character, but this one actually does frustrate me.

oh, it frustrates the HELL OUT OF ME, but it's in character. I look at it this way, Damon did a lot of growing season 02 (as Elena has done this season), but he also regressed, two steps forward, a few steps back, etc. and so on because that's how growth (that eventually sticks) generally works. Same thing with Elena too.

I also feel like that was an oversimplification. Because both boys can respect her choices and both and be controlling when they feel they know better. But I'm not sure if the characters are oversimplifying or the show is.

I HOPE it's the characters!

I don't know that Caroline has seen that much of bad Stefan; and yes considering her history with Damon it's particularly hard for her to put him as the "good brother". But mainly I think she's sort of seeing Stefan as 'not so good Stefan' instead of 'bad Stefan' right now, either way he's still better than Damon as far as she's seen.

Yup.

And while I would have a lot of problems if she were swooning all over Klaus, so far she's just a bit charmed but mostly still not accepting him. They're going to have to tread carefully if this plot develops further, but so far I don't mind.

Yeah, I don't mind, and like rose_marie_rose said, it does fit Caroline.

BTW: It's cool seeing you in a TVD post of mine, LOL!
(no subject) - jedi_of_urth on February 11th, 2012 12:51 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 01:14 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jedi_of_urth on February 11th, 2012 01:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 02:18 am (UTC) (Expand)
Heather-Ann: Damon Love at first sightlinsell_farm on February 10th, 2012 10:52 pm (UTC)
Things really do look different the next day. This all makes sense to me and thank you for helping me see the light.

I deleted my comment to your original post, as it really didn't apply once I'd read this one (and Candy's and Meg's posts).

I do enjoy that this show inspires such diverse reactions and that we all discuss them and change them with respect for each other.
Arabian: Damon04arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:33 am (UTC)
Ah, so sorry I missed this one! (I was responding to the quick ones first, and then I walked away and started on the long ones and yours fell in between and I missed it. EEK!)

Things really do look different the next day. This all makes sense to me and thank you for helping me see the light.

You're welcome! I was glad that I was able to see the light! :D

I deleted my comment to your original post, as it really didn't apply once I'd read this one

I totally get that, what with it being a different frame of mind now.

I do enjoy that this show inspires such diverse reactions and that we all discuss them and change them with respect for each other.

Yup! That's the good side of fandom. :)
wiccabuffy: TVD - Kat/Crazy Bitchwiccabuffy on February 10th, 2012 11:29 pm (UTC)
What's really interesting are all the parallels the show is coming up with, so I'm curious to see how Elena/everyone else will respond to them.

1. Damon killing Lexi/Stefan killing Andie. Whatever your opinions are about the characters or if Damon was "raping" Andie (I don't believe this personally), these two deaths of innocents that meant *something* to one brother by the other brother's hand - I would love to see it really addressed. Because right now, I think people have forgiven Damon for Lexi but they've forgotten about Andie - except Damon. I think he's too messed up to not remember that and hold a grudge.

2. Damon force-feeding Elena blood twice/Stefan force-feeding Elena blood. The second time Damon did it, Elena eventually forgave him. The first time Damon did it, he was in full-on searching-for-Katherine-mode and no one was going to get in his way, even a girl he sort of liked enough to NOT kill. Stefan force-feeding Elena blood was addressed and he apologized -- I think the difference is that both brothers used Elena to get what they wanted by doing it, but only Stefan was someone Elena had cared for tremendously. I'm going on a limb and will say she never slept with Matt, so Stefan was also her first lover. This is huge for a teen, compared to Damon who has been there for her and is complicating her feelings right now.

3. Damon killing Jeremy/Stefan starting a war that almost got Jeremy killed. Damon lashed out because Elena hurt him and rejected him. Stefan did what he did because it was "all he had" as he said, once he left town. Things are very different yet the same for the Salvatore brothers, and I just know that the two of them haven't dealt with everything between themselves - I would love for Elena to be out of the picture and have Damon & Stefan just talk/fight/something about all the crap they've each done.

4. Damon sleeping with Rebekah/Stefan sleeping with Rebekah. Okay sue me, I'm VERY curious to know what will happen here because AGAIN, the brothers are sharing a girl. Granted, Rebekah was in the past for Stefan but then again wasn't Katherine supposedly too? There should be fallout for this, and not just from Elena being jealous or angry (although I think she will be), but also from Stefan. Damon could have slept with some random girl to feel better but he didn't -- he CHOSE Rebekah because it would hurt Elena and it would hurt the Originals and hopefully even piss off Stefan. That's what he does.

Anyway, my four or five cents. :)
Arabian: Katherine04arabian on February 11th, 2012 12:43 am (UTC)
What's really interesting are all the parallels the show is coming up with, so I'm curious to see how Elena/everyone else will respond to them.

Ooh, good point, I didn't even think about the parallels!

Damon killing Lexi/Stefan killing Andie.

Now this is a sore point for me, because I think Damon had the stake in case Lexi did something stupid (and he could look like the awesome hero to Liz), which she did. She could have taken off into the night, but instead chose to attack Liz. Damon DID save Liz's life, but clearly that doesn't matter. Ugh.

Ahem, but your point --

Whatever your opinions are about the characters or if Damon was "raping" Andie (I don't believe this personally),

Me neither. THe show deliberately showed both Caroline and Andie choosing to sleep with him before the vampire/compulsion came into play. Lying to someone and sleeping with is NOT the same thing as rape when the women are perfectly willing. It's crappy, but it's not rape. Damon did NOT compel them to sleep with him.

these two deaths of innocents that meant *something* to one brother by the other brother's hand - I would love to see it really addressed. Because right now, I think people have forgiven Damon for Lexi but they've forgotten about Andie - except Damon. I think he's too messed up to not remember that and hold a grudge.

I REALLY want the Andie-thing addressed and I fear that it never will. It should because how Stefan killed her (and what he did to Elena on Wickery Bridge) shows an inherent cruelty in him that we've never seen with Damon. That should be addressed as well.

Damon force-feeding Elena blood twice/Stefan force-feeding Elena blood. [...]the difference is that both brothers used Elena to get what they wanted by doing it, but only Stefan was someone Elena had cared for tremendously

THIS! And when Damon did it the second time he was doing it to SAVE Elena's life. (ETA: I had a whole section here, don't know where it went!) Whereas for Stefan, he force-fed her the blood, threatened to kill her to gain the upper hand with Klaus. I'm not saying it was right either time with Damon, but for him it was about love. For Stefan it was about revenge.

I'm going on a limb and will say she never slept with Matt, so Stefan was also her first lover.

Oh, I 100% do NOT believe this. There's no way we wouldn't have had discussion with Elena/Bonnie, or Elena/Bonnie/Caroline, or Elena/Caroline about that. NO WAY. Plus some reference to it being her first time with Stefan. I totally believe that she and Matt did the expected, inexperienced version of first-time sex.

Damon killing Jeremy/Stefan starting a war that almost got Jeremy killed.

I don't really see how this works with Elena out of the picture because it's Elena's brother at risk here. The differences for me is that Damon was emotional and unthinking in his action (not that it justifies it), while Stefan was calculating and cold and flat-out said he didn't care that Jeremy was intended collateral damage. Furthermore, Damon KNEW that Jeremy had vampire blood in his system and that he WANTED to turn, so while he was "killing" him, he wasn't taking Jeremy from Elena's life, he'd just be undead. Stefan's actions would have led to Jeremy's forever and ever death.

Damon sleeping with Rebekah/Stefan sleeping with Rebekah.

Hmm, I'm not actually seeing this as a parallel so much, but more as 'these are our available women for him to sleep with,' LOL! Honestly, I'm not really expecting a reaction from Stefan about Rebekah, they've kinda dropped that aspect completely unfortunately. I'd love to be wrong, though.

Edited at 2012-02-11 01:22 am (UTC)
tams71tams71 on February 10th, 2012 11:46 pm (UTC)
1) Yes, Elena is a young woman of eighteen and as she admitted to Stefan last season, doesn’t truly know or understand what true and all-encompassing love is. That said, Elena knows that Damon loves her and wants to keep her safe, which in my opinion, she takes advantage of at times. I don’t think that Damon was out of line telling her he loved her. Yes, he’s not her boyfriend and yes, he knows that she doesn’t feel the same way about him (consciously), but in that moment I truly believe Damon was all about making her understand that putting herself at risk upset him BECAUSE he loves her. Elena should know by now that when she is at risk, Damon goes into full-on hyper protective mode and when he finds out she has put herself in harm's way or sees her in danger; he can’t help but be upset. Just because Damon is not her boyfriend doesn’t mean he shouldn’t express himself. Elena has no problem expressing herself or voicing her opinion when Damon says or does something that upsets her. Pot meet kettle.

2) Yes, Elena didn’t see what Kol did to Matt, Matt was most likely in shock and all WTF-like so he couldn’t relay what happened, and she didn’t know that Rebekah and Kol were plotting to off Matt earlier in the evening. The thing that gets me is that even though Elena knows better, especially with recent events, that Damon has changed and is trying to do the right thing she automatically assumes the worst and then spouts off about it. Sorry, but that just doesn’t fly with me, especially with her witnessing Stefan’s murderous and vindictive behavior first-hand and then having the ability to look past it.

3) Sorry, still can’t look at that last scene with Elena and Stefan and be okay with it. Elena may be denial girl when it comes to Stefan, but the fact of the matter is, dude threatened to kill her (knowingly on the bridge where her parents died) to get back at Klaus, just a short time ago, and it seems to be okay with her. I know that Elena wants her Stefan back and that any time she sees a glimpse of him she jumps at the chance, but her pleading with him and crawling for any crumb he might have given her turned my stomach.

4) Amen sista – well put.

5) Yes, Damon was a dick to Caroline by compelling her and using her as Happy Meal in season one, but Damon has also saved her, Matt, and Tyler, done his best to keep everyone safe, been a good friend to her mother, helped Liz with Bill who was trying to torture the vampire out of Caroline (and yes, I remember that Damon chomped on daddy dearest), and helped Liz realize that even though Caroline is a vampire, that she’s still her daughter and worth loving. Yes, Caroline has seen Damon be evil and has felt that evilness personally, but she is also witnessing first-hand that Damon is not pure evil and that he does have some redeeming qualities. Like what was written, Caroline does have blinders on when it comes to Stefan, but she knows what Stefan has done and like Elena, seems to be looking past it just because he is Stefan.

Stefan has got to face some REAL consequences for his actions this season.

He needs to be held accountable (and apologizing for feeding Elena his blood, but not acknowledging what came after was particularly loathsome, in my opinion). There HAS to be consequences for his actions, actions that he WILLINGLY chose to take that hurt many people. Just because he's feeling bad about it now doesn't excuse those actions. There must be fallout. We'll see.


Amen, amen, amen!!


Edited at 2012-02-10 11:51 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Damon01arabian on February 11th, 2012 01:02 am (UTC)
1 of 2 --

Aww, we have to disagree now. :(

1) Yes, Elena is a young woman of eighteen and as she admitted to Stefan last season, doesn’t truly know or understand what true and all-encompassing love is. That said, Elena knows that Damon loves her and wants to keep her safe, which in my opinion, she takes advantage of at times.

She does, absolutely, take advantage of him, I agree, but I don't think she quite realizes to the degree she does and how she does it because she really DOESN'T have much experience at all. She's only been in relationships with Matt and Stefan who both basically bow to her every whim. Damon doesn't do that. Damon meets her as an equal and she doesn't know how to handle that.

I don’t think that Damon was out of line telling her he loved her. Yes, he’s not her boyfriend and yes, he knows that she doesn’t feel the same way about him (consciously), but in that moment I truly believe Damon was all about making her understand that putting herself at risk upset him BECAUSE he loves her.

Yes, he was totally reacting as such in that moment, however, it still didn't give him the right to express himself that way as if he IS her boyfriend. There are reasons for acting certain ways that are excused because of the type of relationship you have with someone, as much as he'd like it, as much as he'd kinda gotten comfortable in that role of pseudo-boyfriend, he's NOT in that role, so he doesn't get to say that. It's too weighted and comes with so much stuff unsaid still between them. An "I love you" like that happens when it's a mutual, I-love-you relationship that is established and set. They don't have that. Not yet. ;)

Elena should know by now that when she is at risk, Damon goes into full-on hyper protective mode and when he finds out she has put herself in harm's way or sees her in danger; he can’t help but be upset.

Yes, but just because she knows that doesn't make her responsible for putting up with his actions. This is obviously to a MUCH lesser degree, but I'm thinking of what happened in "The Return." It was obvious to Elena that Damon desperately needed assurance that there was something there and real between them, but she wasn't obligated to give him something she didn't feel (because she was lying to herself, but that's not the point). Elena is not responsible for Damon's actions. Just because he's going to act a certain way, shouldn't make her have to tread with him. If she does, then what does that say about their relationship as a whole? Plus, she was in a VERY scary place emotionally right then. She was feeling freaked out, guilty and her brain was all awhir. As jedi_of_urth said above: She was in no place to deal with the Damon of it all just then.

Just because Damon is not her boyfriend doesn’t mean he shouldn’t express himself.

Right, and because he expressed himself in a way that wasn't in line with where their relationship is, he had to deal with the consequences.

TBC

Edited at 2012-02-11 01:35 am (UTC)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 01:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - tams71 on February 11th, 2012 01:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 02:21 am (UTC) (Expand)
rose_marie_roserose_marie_rose on February 11th, 2012 12:51 am (UTC)
TRUTH. SO MUCH TRUTH. Can I just make love to this post, please?

So flattered to be quoted, too! *blushes*

Especially all your stuff about Elena's reaction to Damon's "I love you" and Elena trying to get Stefan to FEEL, just so perfect and exactly what's in my head. Thanks for this amazing break down of it all :)
Arabian: Katherine02arabian on February 11th, 2012 01:04 am (UTC)
YAY! I'm glad I could finally give you something to agree with me on. :D

(You deserved to be quoted!)
Diana: Vampire Diaries - Comfort (E/C)butterfly on February 11th, 2012 01:46 am (UTC)
It does ALL make character-based sense.

Yeah, I think almost everyone was making very bad choices, but I think they were mostly in character bad choices. And I do think Damon's character growth is intact - he didn't attack Kol just for the hell of it or anything like that. He actually saved Matt's life. It was just that other people didn't get to see that it was different than before.

He needs to be held accountable (and apologizing for feeding Elena his blood, but not acknowledging what came after was particularly loathsome, in my opinion). There HAS to be consequences for his actions, actions that he WILLINGLY chose to take that hurt many people. Just because he's feeling bad about it now doesn't excuse those actions. There must be fallout. We'll see.

Yes. This is what the show really needs to have integrity. Stefan needs to be called to account for the actions that he chose to undertake.
Arabian: Elena&Caroline01arabian on February 11th, 2012 02:24 am (UTC)
Yeah, I think almost everyone was making very bad choices, but I think they were mostly in character bad choices.

Exactly.

I do think Damon's character growth is intact - he didn't attack Kol just for the hell of it or anything like that. He actually saved Matt's life.

Right, and like I said above, Damon did a lot of growing season 02 (as Elena has done this season), but he also regressed, two steps forward, a few steps back, etc. and so on because that's how growth (that eventually sticks) generally works. Same thing with Elena too. She's regressing. I don't like it, I don't want it, but I didn't like it or want it with Damon either, but it was necessary to get him to where he's getting now. SO MUCH BETTER!

It was just that other people didn't get to see that it was different than before.

Man, I HOPE it comes out so much. Maybe even to Elena, she goes to apologize to Damon, and maybe he calls her on believing the worst of him STILL after all this time. (I'm sorry, I love her, but I do think she needs to be made to feel like crap big-time for what she's doing/done to Damon.

This is what the show really needs to have integrity. Stefan needs to be called to account for the actions that he chose to undertake.

Yeah.
(no subject) - butterfly on February 11th, 2012 03:32 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Jude: tvd; elijahdanceonstardust on February 11th, 2012 03:37 am (UTC)
Yes. YES. YES. to the nth degree.

Elena is, first and foremost, a denial girl. This was established in the Pilot. She stood in front of the mirror and practiced her denial speech. Elena is *especially* denial girl when it comes to Stefan.
It rings true to her characterization now that I think about it. As you said, especially for the actions at the porch of love (even though to me, it's sacred for Damon/Elena moments, it's a bit tainted now :/)

He needs to be held accountable (and apologizing for feeding Elena his blood, but not acknowledging what came after was particularly loathsome, in my opinion). There HAS to be consequences for his actions, actions that he WILLINGLY chose to take that hurt many people. Just because he's feeling bad about it now doesn't excuse those actions. There must be fallout. We'll see.
I agree, the dude needs karmic payback big time.
Arabian: Dancing Cucumberarabian on February 11th, 2012 03:46 am (UTC)
Yup, all around. I wasn't happy that it took place on the porch either. But overall, I think this was deliberate for a reason.
Thoughts= stars I can't fathom into constellationsthesicko1012 on February 11th, 2012 04:07 am (UTC)
Yay for take twos! I think that it is really understandable for people as frustrated as all of us are to have their first initial reaction be anger, but once we get the chance to really mull it over the anger dissipates a little bit. Things get put into perspective and we remember that there is a reason why we love these characters and the creators behind them. I had a very negative rant on my journal (which some things in there I still think) and usually it would take me a couple days to see things better, but you got me there quicker, so thank you for that.

Edited at 2012-02-11 04:09 am (UTC)
Arabian: Ian & Nina(PS)05arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:32 pm (UTC)
I think that it is really understandable for people as frustrated as all of us are to have their first initial reaction be anger, but once we get the chance to really mull it over the anger dissipates a little bit.

I am bummed that more people are still not seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Their big mistake in this episode, I think, was in NOT giving D/E fans a MAJOR moment to hold them (after three weeks of barely an interaction) before they TEMPORARILY gutted the ship. And that has perhaps made people stop looking at the series, and especially this season, as a whole instead of this one episode.

you got me there quicker, so thank you for that

You're welcome. Yay! :)
sumeria on February 11th, 2012 06:24 am (UTC)
Hokay, so, I didn't get to see the ep till tonight, so, apologies for coming late.

1.) RE: Elena's reaction to Damon's "I love you."

I actually took this totally differently than you. This episode and previous, what I see Elena doing is realizing just *how deep* she's gotten in with Damon, and trying somewhat desperately to backpedal. She's not really "over" Stefan yet; for all that he's done unforgivable shit that I truly doubt she'll be able to get over (at least, not to the point of recreating their relationship) she does still love him. And I think from the first time she first realized she might be capable of having ~feelings~ for Damon, the thing that terrified/disgusted her the most was the idea that she could do to the two of them what Katherine did: toy with both of them. And this is what I think she feels she's slipping into.

But, since for most of the length of their acquaintance, for all that she does (you're right) treat him as a sexless backup boyfriend at times, he's the one who's pushed their relationship further along. He pushes his way into her life, with his flirting and his charm and his being totally reliable and stupid in love with her... She wouldn't be falling in love with him if he didn't keep putting himself out there, in almost every sense. I think what we're seeing, in this scene, is Elena lashing out (somewhat childishly) and blaming him for the fact that she's falling in love with him. If he would just stop being in love with her (she thinks) she could stop being so *confused*.

He, of course, took it completely differently, because Stefan knows exactly where his issues are, and had previously stuck the knife in and twisted.

2.) RE: The assumption that Damon has gone off and is self-destructive boy.

Yeah, all of this. He does pick fights when he's feeling hurt. Hell, if it had been Cole instead of Rebekah who sat down at the bar, it would not have struck me as particularly out of character for him to start something.

3.) RE: Elena ignoring EVERYTHING that Stefan has done and begging him to FEEL something.

This scene didn't bother me, I think principally because it didn't feel to me "romantic". Elena's been going through some rough shit. Shit that I imagine she wishes she didn't have to feel/think about *all the time*. She said that she's been trying not to feel, and it's not working. It felt to me like her trying to empathize with where he is, and trying to reach out to a friend that she doesn't want to see destroy himself forever. Actually...

...I need to check the wording, but I think she's quoting Lexi from the torture scene. Didn't she say back then that the key to getting through to him was to "make him feel something. Feel *anything*."?

4.) RE: Stefan respecting Elena's choices, and Damon not.

Okay, yeah, I'm with you; this just pisses me off. I console myself somewhat with the thought that, this episode, it was mostly Stefan saying that shit, and frankly, he was being kind of a manipulative asshole. But the way the show has been harping on the word "choice" lately, I have very high hopes that we'll get to see them actually addressing the hypocricy that's been floating around. Then again, I keep hearing that some people think Stefan was ever, at any point, open and honest with Elena, and I get depressed again.

But yeah, in conclusion, this episode was hard because all those obnoxious do-not-want things we were saying earlier this week had to happen before we could get the shit we wanted happened, and we must not yet loose faith. ^_^
Diana: Vampire Diaries - Brothersbutterfly on February 11th, 2012 03:36 pm (UTC)
He, of course, took it completely differently, because Stefan knows exactly where his issues are, and had previously stuck the knife in and twisted.

Mmm, I found this really interesting because that's what happened in The Return, too, isn't it? Only in that case, it was Katherine honing in on Damon's weak spot and twisting the knife.
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:41 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
crowandfog: TVD: Damon she'll rip your heart outcrowandfog on February 11th, 2012 06:49 am (UTC)
Sigh. I think I'm the only person in this fandom who is actually more upset about this than I was yesterday.

I agree with a lot of what you're saying about Elena's reactions to Damon. However, I think, re: Damon's "because I love you", that everyone has the right to be honest about their feelings and that Elena is the one who has spent TWO SEASONS encouraging Damon to not only feel whatever he might feel but to SHARE THOSE FEELINGS WITH HER. So I can't cut her any slack for that. Still, yeah, sure, it was consistent with her character, because the only time that Elena DOESN'T want to be inappropriately intimate with Damon is when he is talking about their relationship.

Anyway, my problem with her responses to Damon this episode is not that they weren't consistent with her character, but that I'm coming to the realization that this is a character that I do not like.

I liked the episode a lot, but it's really making me rethink my investment in the Damon/Elena relationship. I said elsewhere that it's so weird how I can enjoy the episode so much and yet dislike so much of what happened in it. Only TVD.
eolivet on February 11th, 2012 03:57 pm (UTC)
I liked the episode a lot, but it's really making me rethink my investment in the Damon/Elena relationship

I'm sort of in a similar boat -- though I still COMPLETELY SUPPORT D/E 100%, will go down with this ship, etc. What I'm starting to doubt after this episode is if the show feels the same way. I saw a lot of "S/E OTP" signposts that were difficult to ignore -- especially given what I perceive is the whitewashing of Stefan's actions, and Elena's easy forgiveness of him (and tendency to let much worse things slide, while Damon is called on the carpet for every. last. thing.)

I've just...seen A LOT of TV shows, and the signs...they just don't look optimistic to me. I am nearly always wrong, and will be happy to be proven so, but I think the show wanted us to agree with Stefan vs. Damon, and it just worries me from a shipper perspective. I'd like to think they're playing a long game with D/E, I really would. :) But I'm going to have to see more reaction on Elena's part to believe it now. :( Hopefully we will soon...
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - eolivet on February 11th, 2012 05:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 06:24 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
sun_signsun_sign on February 11th, 2012 09:54 am (UTC)
[goes into Damon mode] I LOVE YOU!!

Seriously, I really loved reading this post. I actually think it's my favorite entry of yours so far. It has been annoying me for a long time how fandom has been treating Elena, so it makes me happy to see that other people feel the same. I don't have anything to add, you said it perfectly. She's 18, she's confused, her life is falling apart - her behaviour makes sense, if you put yourself in her shoes.

Arabian: Elena04arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:54 pm (UTC)
Aww, thank you. I'm glad that it was something good to read. Yeah, the Elena-bashing is just grrr! Cut her some slack, folks! I mean, Damon can kill random people and it's all 'poor, bb!' Elena makes a thoughtless, cutting remark and it's all BITCHMUSTDIE!! Ugh!
(no subject) - sun_sign on February 11th, 2012 06:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 06:21 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - sun_sign on February 11th, 2012 07:03 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 11th, 2012 07:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
k_stjamesk_stjames on February 11th, 2012 04:03 pm (UTC)
I completely agree with you on so much of what you wrote but especially on Stefan being held accountable for something. When Caroline was defending Stefan at the Grill before the dance I was hoping that just like Elena didn't have time to tell her about kissing damonnit slipped her mind to mention that Stefan tried to kill her on the very bridge where her parents died. I guess that is what bothers me the most and you highlighted it above. Stefan had done shitty things and huge parts of his relationship with Elena are built on lies and naive one dimensional views but it never gets held to a higher standard. When will Elena process all she learned and seen about the ugliness of Stefan's character and do something about it? It frustrating because 3 years in and there hadn't been any real growth from Elena about how she sees Stefan.

I also agree that while it killed me Damon surprised her with that ILY during all that craziness and the girl just froze but she's going to have to deal with that now and hopefully a distant cold Damon gets her to realize just how big of a presence he has in her life. As long as it does not involve begging Stefan. That was wrong and such regression for her character. Unless she gets Stefan back only to see just how shallow that love was but I fear them getting back together even temporarily would destroy Damon.
Arabian: Damon & Elena06arabian on February 11th, 2012 05:58 pm (UTC)
When Caroline was defending Stefan at the Grill

Well, I didn't see Caroline defending Stefan AT ALL. She merely would prefer him to Damon, and considering ALL OF HER ISSUES with Damon, that's not exactly a ringing endorsement for Stefan, LOL!

Stefan had done shitty things and huge parts of his relationship with Elena are built on lies and naive one dimensional views but it never gets held to a higher standard.

I will continue to dream that it's heading there. Hope springs eternal!

As long as it does not involve begging Stefan. That was wrong and such regression for her character.

I don't think it was that. I mean, there was a little regression (and I still stand by what I wrote above), but also sumeria made the point that she thought Elena was talking, trying to get through to Stefan as a FRIEND. And I think (that paired with my take on that scene), it makes a LOT of sense. Firstly, she used similar (if not the very same) words that Lexi did about getting through to Stefan in "Ghost World." Plus -- and this is key for a show that LOVES its parallels -- Elena did the EXACT same thing to Damon when she was trying to get through to him in "Homecoming" (hands-on-the-face) and she wasn't trying to be romantic there at all. She was trying to a be a good friend getting through to him. It was the same thing here. The difference? It worked with Damon; it didn't with Stefan.

So if that's a parallel (and I certainly flashed back to that "Homecoming" scene), well, Damon = 1, Stefan = 0 because it worked with Damon.
vanimy: Elena/Carolinevanimy on February 11th, 2012 04:12 pm (UTC)
The wordier, the better. ;)

1.) RE: Elena's reaction to Damon's "I love you."

I have mixed feelings about this. OTOH I agree with you on Damon behaving like he's the boyfriend and Elena not appreciating it. OTOH I think that Damon felt he had the right to say it because Elena already knows he loves her so it's not like it was that much a big deal.

The more I think about it the more I believe it was about Elena trying to backpedal everything happening with Damon. She's so scared of losing control I think (especially with everything happening in her life that's so out of control) that she's trying to push him away, excluding him from her plans, trying to be distant with him all throughout the ball. And then he goes and tells her he's mad at her because he loves her. And she just reacts. I can understand this if this is where the writers are going with this.

2.) RE: The assumption that Damon has gone off and is self-destructive boy.

I had no problem with her assuming the worst, she didn't see the scene with Matt and Kol. Had no way of knowing what happened. What I had a problem with was her not trying to reach out to him knowing that. What happened to the Elena who stayed after Rose's death even if he told her to leave and hugged him when they weren't on the best of terms at the time? What really annoyed me was the fact that Elena was no longer the caring woman she usually is (except with Stefan) but it is in character if we assume the fact she's scared of Damon and what he means to her.

3.) RE: Elena ignoring EVERYTHING that Stefan has done and begging him to FEEL something.

Amen to everything you said.

4.) RE: Stefan respecting Elena's choices, and Damon not.

I really hope you're right and the show will call on their hypocrisy about taking the choices from the people they love. Because I don't like thinking this was about the writers telling us that Stefan respects Elena and Damon doesn't and thus he isn't boyfriend material.

5.) RE: Caroline and her ability to forgive and love everyone except for Damon.

I also think it makes sense that Caroline holds a personal grudge against Damon.

Re : Stefan.

Couldn't agree more. There are some things he can't escape and he didn't HAVE to do. So yes, I hope he gets accountable for them.
Arabian: Elena&Caroline01arabian on February 11th, 2012 06:04 pm (UTC)
The wordier, the better. ;)

That's what I'm talking about!

I have mixed feelings about this. OTOH I agree with you on Damon behaving like he's the boyfriend and Elena not appreciating it. OTOH I think that Damon felt he had the right to say it because Elena already knows he loves her so it's not like it was that much a big deal.</i>

But considering their weighted relationship and the fact that his love for her has NEVER been discussed by them, it IS a big deal. It's the wandering elephant in the room at all times. And he just casually acknowledged it.

The more I think about it the more I believe it was about Elena trying to backpedal everything happening with Damon.

sumeria had the same conclusion: "This episode and previous, what I see Elena doing is realizing just *how deep* she's gotten in with Damon, and trying somewhat desperately to backpedal. [...] And I think from the first time she first realized she might be capable of having ~feelings~ for Damon, the thing that terrified/disgusted her the most was the idea that she could do to the two of them what Katherine did: toy with both of them. And this is what I think she feels she's slipping into." So basically there are a LOT of things at play here. It all goes back to that list of ISSUES THAT DAMON AND ELENA MUST GET THROUGH BEFORE THEY CAN BE!

What I had a problem with was her not trying to reach out to him knowing that.

Someone actually had a great point about that over on FanForum.

QUOTE: Elena had NO CLUE that Stefan had been manipulating him behind the scenes, or that Klaus had told him he was the worst thing for Elena. Elena's words to Damon were just the straw that broke the camel's back, because he took it as affirmation that everything Stefan and Klaus had said to him was true. And Elena DID try to fix it after she said it. Damon cut her off and wouldn't listen to her. Why would Elena run after him when she knew he wasn't going to listen to a thing she had to say? I maintain that she had no idea just how deeply she had wounded him (she couldn't have, because there was so much she didn't know), and she thought she'd give him time and space to cool off before she'd try to talk to him/apologize. The text message was about telling him she got home safely, not about apologizing. She would save her apology or their discussion for later, when she had a shot at having him HEAR her. She has no idea that her words sent him spiraling the way they did. That's not her fault, either. She doesn't know what he's been hearing from others. (Ariana2)

So, yeah, it really did make sense and wasn't Elena being horribly cruel.

Amen to everything you said.

Plus, add to that, sumeria made the point that she thought Elena was talking, trying to get through to Stefan as a FRIEND. And I think (that paired with my take on that scene), it makes a LOT of sense. Firstly, she used similar (if not the very same) words that Lexi did about getting through to Stefan in "Ghost World." Plus -- and this is key for a show that LOVES its parallels -- Elena did the EXACT same thing to Damon when she was trying to get through to him in "Homecoming" (hands-on-the-face) and she wasn't trying to be romantic there at all. She was trying to a be a good friend getting through to him. It was the same thing here. The difference? It worked with Damon; it didn't with Stefan.

So if that's a parallel (and I certainly flashed back to that "Homecoming" scene), well, Damon = 1, Stefan = 0 because it worked with Damon.

I really hope you're right and the show will call on their hypocrisy about taking the choices from the people they love. Because I don't like thinking this was about the writers telling us that Stefan respects Elena and Damon doesn't and thus he isn't boyfriend material.

Lordy, so do I! I need for this to be dealt with.

Re : Stefan.
Couldn't agree more. There are some things he can't escape and he didn't HAVE to do. So yes, I hope he gets accountable for them.


YES, THIS!
(no subject) - vanimy on February 11th, 2012 11:13 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - arabian on February 14th, 2012 01:57 am (UTC) (Expand)