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14 September 2012 @ 03:04 am
Letting Go ... or Not  
Something struck me a few weeks ago and I’ve been meaning to jot it down and get thoughts from my TVD-watching flist. Finally, I’m getting around to it. Yay.

Now, it’s certainly been noted that the three times that Damon and Elena mutually kissed the word ‘go’ was in the title of all three songs that played over the scenes –

2.22 “As I Lay Dying” – I Should Go
3.10 “The New Deal” – Holding On and Letting Go
3.19 “Heart of Darkness” – Never Let Me Go

In fact, someone tweeted Julie Plec about this and she responded that she hadn’t noticed that coincidence. I believe coincidence is absolutely correct with all three songs. But not in two of them, namely the two songs in season 03. Sure, all three include ‘go,’ but one of them (“I Should Go”) is purely about the physical act of leaving the other person’s presence. The other two aren’t just about going. It’s not the action verb in those two songs. In the ones played during the kisses in “The New Deal” and “Heart of Darkness” the action verb is letting go.

While there is obviously a series long arc on display with this show, just as obviously the seasons are designed to build and connect smaller arcs and themes. In 3.10, when Damon and Elena truly kissed – just because – for the first time, the refrain of the song was holding on and letting go. Based on what was happening at that point in the show, the ‘holding on’ certainly appeared to reference Damon and the ‘letting go’ was about Stefan. Fast-forward to 3.19 and the song playing over Damon and Elena’s bed-conversation and hot and heavy make-out session was “Never Let Me Go.” And this time it was the opposite of the 3.10 refrain about Stefan. Whereas that step indicated it was time for Elena to let go of Stefan, here it was begging for Damon to never let her go.

Bringing us to 3.22: In that episode, Elena was told by her mother that she knew it was time to let Matt go and Elena in remembering that advice used those words when saying goodbye to Damon. That HAD to have been deliberate. The fact that both songs in season 03 used the theme of ‘letting go’ had to tie in with Elena’s use and – I think – misuse of them in “The Departed.”

Think about it. In 3.10, the song is telling us that it’s time for Elena to Stefan go as she’s kissing Damon. But being Elena she holds onto what she should do – ie, stick with Stefan. And what happened in that flashback with her mother’s advice. Elena knew that it was time to let go of Matt but she wasn’t able to let go of the idea of what love ‘should be’ and of what she ‘should’ do, ie., be with the boy she was supposed to grow up and spend the rest of her life with. It took Damon to help wake her up to what she truly wanted … and then a huge, life-changing event, her parent’s death, to make her finally let go of what she should and go for what she wanted (breaking free from the expected romantic relationship with Matt).

Now look at 3.19, when with Damon, finally giving into what she wanted with him, the lyrics pleaded with him to never let her go. Again, jump forward to 3.22 and we have Elena once again holding on to what she believes love ‘should be’ and what she ‘should’ do, ie., stick it out with Stefan and stay true to him as she promised instead of doing what she wanted … taking that leap.

So I think in season 04 what we’re going to see is Damon once again being the one who helps her to wake up to what she truly wants (him). Of course, that awakening will be aided by this new, huge life-changing event, vamping out. How the theme of ‘letting go’ was used in relation to Stefan, and especially Damon, in those songs played during the Damon/Elena kisses paired with Elena telling Damon she was letting him go in the finale signaled to me that one of things we’re going to get is Elena realizing that no matter how she tries, no, she can not let Damon go. Not by a long shot.

Hmm, I hope that made sense, LOL!
x5vale: torturedx5vale on September 14th, 2012 11:19 am (UTC)
It perfectly makes sense and I agree with. I just want Elena to be the one to awake and understand that she wants to be with Damon and not Damon trying to win her over for a whole season. Damon has to be Damon and live his own life as he feels to and Elena has to feel the lack of him in her life.

Very good analysis btw :)
Arabian: Damon04arabian on September 14th, 2012 08:32 pm (UTC)
I'm thinking (hoping?) that will be more the case. It's been made clear that Damon is stepping back, and if we get Damon the way he was (without being the asshole to her that he was in episodes 15-17, because he really was a jerk) in episodes 15-22 of last season, I think we'll get our wish.
Florencia: DE (Kiss) (3x19)florencia7 on September 14th, 2012 10:54 pm (UTC)
OH I so hope you're right!! You must be. This makes so much sense *hugs this post*

I always loved the way (um, OK, I love my interpretation of it lol) in which Stefan and Matt were kind of placed on the same level in 3x22. First of all, in 3x22 we got two kisses: Matt/Elena flashback!kiss and Stefan/Elena. This has to mean something ;) Secondly, it was made quite clear both Stefan and Matt represent(ed) all the "shoulds" in Elena's eyes. Thirdly (indirectly/subconsciously/whatever, but still!), it's always Damon who gets in between Elena's relationship dilemmas; he is the recurring character. Matt is the past and Stefan is the present ("I can't think about always, all I can think about is right now."), but Damon is in both Elena's past and Elena's present AND he's also in Elena's future (obviously ;)

On a side note, something occurred to me the other day. During that phone call, when D&E talk about the "choice", the way Damon phrases the question is (more or less, quoting from memory) "if it was down to him and me, who would get the good-bye?" Elena's answer to that (to summarize lol) is Stefan, and while of course they ARE talking about the current situation, the threat of upcoming death, etc., the way this is said, I can't help feeling like the underlying/hidden/subconscious meaning of that is that Elena is choosing to say good bye to Stefan, as in choosing to let Stefan go (!). Only she doesn't realize that yet ;)
Arabian: Damon & Elena20arabian on September 15th, 2012 04:01 am (UTC)
Yeah, there was the like the surface connection of Matt and Damon with Matt being the one she let go of the in the past, and her telling Damon she was letting him go in the present, but that was so such surface. Because as you pointed out, everything else played out like Stefan and how she feels ('shoulds') was more akin to Matt.

I TOTALLY caught that (as did distant_autumn in her write-up of the episode) that Elena was choosing Stefan to say goodbye to. Hopefully that is what season 04 will be about, Elena letting go of Stefan and growing up.