Arabian (arabian) wrote,
Arabian
arabian

6.01 - 'I'll Remember' (The Vampire Diaries)

Our long, dark summer has passed and The Vampire Diaries is once more with us. AAAAAAHHHHHH! The crowd cheers. Dare I say it? I will. Behind the cut, not too many words. I think. Maybe. We'll see. I was wrong. Of course.

Note: Just a quick heads-up, first as always, yup, still doing the whole spoiler-free thing, and still going completely whole hog spoiler-free. That means no episode descriptions, no episode stills, nothing! So please don't reference any spoilers at all, if it hasn't aired, please don't talk about it.

Also, (and this is already mentioned in a few comment—sadding this a bit late, but for any future comments) new thing that I'm doing starting this season with regards for speculation about promos for the next episode. When it comes to this show, I realized that we just don't know what anything means. We're getting 20-30 seconds out of 42-44 minutes of an episode and it's not even necessarily 20-30 seconds that is going to be in the finished product that makes it onto the air. So, I'm not going to speculate based on the promos anymore because those promos can mean anything. We just don't know. Any speculation I do in my posts is going to be based purely on episodes that have aired from now. :Nods emphatically: So on with the episode! Whee! Because my show is back!

Not an OMG!Awesome episode, but I really liked it. Of course it helped that it was pretty much the Elena hour and I did like what we got with regards to the Damon and Elena love story. But since it was so Elena-heavy, let's start with her, shall we?

So she's decided to be a doctor then. Hmm. On one hand, I can see it. She's a very compassionate person. She's smart, she grew up in a doctor's household and if worse comes to worse, she can save a dying patient with her blood, right? And of course she's following in her father's footsteps, plus, in a way, she's honoring her parents' memory by doing this by being a better person. So it does make sense. On the other hand, well, we've never been given any indication that Elena has had any interest in the medical field before and the opportunity was there when Meredith was in their lives, not to mention the whole, you know, her dad was a doctor! Then there's the, ugh, connection to Stefan because he wanted to be a doctor and of course, Tom Avery, EMT-extraordinaire, but that's just the bitter shipper in me talking... Finally, and most obviously, oh, you know, she's a vampire (!) and being around blood all the time just might, maybe, could be, a problem, ripper or not. But, yeah, sure, Elena, go for it, be a doctor. If she can handle it, cool. It does fit her personality.

And she needs something to keep her mind off of her Damon-issues, well, while she has them (more on the Alaric-erasure later) since the one that could possibly do the trick isn't in play. Seriously, how much does Markos suck? By making Mystic Falls a magic-free zone thus keeping Jeremy and Elena mostly separated, he sure helped do a number on Elena. Oh, and alternately, what a horrible decision it is that Jeremy is NOT with Elena and Alaric right now? Because if Elena had Jeremy under her watchful eye, she so would not be this far gone because she would have to deal, she would have to. Think about it...the only time in the entire episode that Elena wasn't either in denial or falling apart, the only time when she appeared to have it together was when she was on the phone with Jeremy. That was an Elena in control. Yup. Other than that? The girl was a mess. Because...yeah, she's just lost it without Damon. Oh, Elena.

Elena and Damon. {sobs}

Go me, I managed to not cry in what I'm pretty much calling a sequel to their goodbye in "Home." Don't get me wrong, I was definitely emotional (each time I watched it—just don't ask how many times I watched it), I didn't cry though. It was interesting that they had her try to say goodbye to him, and even did the fake-out camera stays on her, but not on him so that you assume when it pulls away, he'll be gone but then he was still there.

 

These two. I couldn't help but think back to the whole "when it's real, you can't walk away," and with these two, we know it's real, and so they can't walk away. And they can't let go and so they hold on. And so Elena held on. And held on and then she just let go and let loose.

 

Caroline had said earlier to her mom that Elena hadn't even cried over Damon. Obviously Caroline was wrong. We'd seen Elena cry when she'd first lost Damon. We saw her cry now. And she told Caroline that every time she thought of never seeing him again, she thought she would die meaning that she did think about it, and I'm sure that every time she did, she cried. It's just clear that she didn't do it in front of Caroline...or anyone else. Her tears were for herself or "Damon" alone.

Gah! That moment at the end of that scene there when Elena once again slid down all alone in tears just like she had in "Home" gutted me. But this time she had someone to hold onto and not just air, even if it was only in her mind, it felt real to her. She could "see" him; she could "feel" him. Damn, that got to me. Man.

 

I also loved the callback to their first meeting and the full acknowledgement that, yes, he was what Elena truly wanted. Damon Salvatore was her passion, her adventure, the love that consumed her. Oh, oh, oh and I loved, loved, loved how we got over and over through the episode her telling everyone (Alaric, Caroline, Stefan, Damon/herself) that she couldn't imagine living forever in completion without him, that she had to basically forget loving him to even imagine finding any kind of happiness because there would always be a hole inside of her named Damon for eternity. *sigh* Just, gah.

Speaking of... Yeah, I mentioned that above, so will Alaric actually compel her to forget loving Damon? I thought at first that he wouldn't. That instead it would just be used as a device to delve deeper into Elena's feelings throughout her human years (as seen in the preview), but now I'm thinking it may happen. I mean, it's not like Alaric can't just uncompel it when Damon finally gets back, right? And there must be some reason they're setting it in motion beyond Alaric wants Elena to not suffer throughout eternity because she's so desperately, madly in love with Damon that she'll find no happiness ever without him. So we'll see. :shrugs:

ETA: serpentinesoul mentioned this comments. I had thought of it during the episode, but had forgotten to put it in my notes. Yes, Rebekah had offered to compel Stefan to forget loving Elena and he'd agreed which is similar to Elena asking Alaric to compel her to forget loving Damon. However, it really couldn't be more different. Elena was still there, she wasn't gone. It wasn't about getting over an unassailable grief because Damon had died, it was because Stefan was having a pity party of one because he'd been dumped (because, let's get real, after he'd left his girlfriend for four months—admittedly to save his brother—he then chose revenge over her). Anyhoo, back to Elena and Alaric.

But before that came up there was something else in that conversation that made me sit up and take notice. I felt a ping when Alaric said that he didn't like anything about being a vampire, and Elena said that she didn't as well. I immediately went back to my thoughts in my finale post about Damon being human and Elena eventually being human again as well because Elena doesn't want to be a vampire (which was discussed in-depth in some various comments). She accepts it, but she doesn't like it. And that line from her made me feel even more strongly that we eventually will go that road with Elena returning to her human state. Then boom, she said until she found things to enjoy about it.

And I was like 'oh' deflated like a balloon and then! she stated the thing she enjoyed about it was basically being able to love Damon forever. BOOYAH! And I was all ‘happy dance-time!' and I smiled because I felt that this comment proved my instinct right because it brought me back to "Into the Wild" and "Graduation." In the former Elena wanted Damon to take the cure with her, live a human life and they would grow old and die together, and then in the latter, Elena no longer wanted the cure because there was only one and if she couldn't have that human life WITH Damon, then she would have forever instead because it would be WITH Damon. The key was WITH DAMON. So, yeah, I'm back to thinking we're going to get a human!Damon and human!Elena eventually because these are the two that we've had those true epiphany moments with (not the surface 'what I should say because I'm a good guy' crap from Stefan) both individually and as a couple. Uh huh.

Random "Damon"/Elena moments that gave me the feels!

- Laughing and cuddling in the cemetery. Yeah, that's Damon and Elena. Yeah.

 

- Holding hands in the car. *sigh* It was like a parallel to the hand-holding in "Home." Me like.

 

- Kissing him goodbye. *sigh* But he's still there. Holding on, unable to let go.

 

- Elena pulling Damon's shirt out and then bringing it to her face to inhale the scent of him. I know that feeling, the memory, the love and the pain it evokes. I've been there.

 

- I was a bit confused at first about the line from "Damon" about "one line from my brother and you're ready to give up" because I could only originally think that it was about Damon's insecurity about Elena's feelings for Stefan. But this is coming from Elena's subconscious at this point and that simply makes no sense, so I kept thinking of an alternative and I think I have one. Which is Stefan is Damon's brother, loves him desperately and should be the last person to give up hope and if Stefan has given up, well, that should mean there is simply no hope left. Stefan is Damon's BROTHER. And that was the specific word that "Damon" used in the hallucination. "One call from my brother," so, yeah, I'm thinking that's it.

Yeah, oh, Stefan, you gave up, boo. You gave up. I'm surprised, but I really, really shouldn't be. At first I thought it was out of character, but then I realized it totally, completely, absolutely is so in character. So, so, so Stefan. Why? Because Damon is gone. Without Damon there, how can Stefan accomplish anything? Seriously. Stefan, once again, was his typical useless self. He can't figure out how to do anything without Damon there so he just shuts down completely. Yeah, that's Stefan to a tee. Yup. Oh, boo.

And note, how just as typical, Elena showed yet again how so completely she has no clue just who Stefan really is. She actually thought that he had it all together and he was soldiering through and doing it right, getting shit done. Nope, nope and nope. Stefan is a mess and useless. I mean, damn, every Stefan scene could have been removed from this episode and it would have changed nothing. Even the phone conversation with Elena could have been trimmed because that accomplished nothing. Her talk with Caroline could have segued to the next "Damon" scene and led to the same results. Ah, but then we wouldn't have seen the same emotional fall-out or lack thereof, right? Sure he's been avoiding both Elena and Caroline for months, but he at least took Elena's call at last, Caroline's not so much. Why not?

Because he'd give in to her. Elena doesn't care enough to push him to come back, all she cares about is if he's found any hope about Damon and Bonnie coming back. Alaric just checks in for information (about Damon). Caroline would push him. Caroline wants to talk to him, Stefan. She wants to talk about Stefan. Caroline cares, yes, about bringing Bonnie (and to a degree, I'm sure, Damon) home, but she's just as concerned about bringing Stefan back into the fold too. She wants Stefan back in her life as just as much. And he can't deal with that. He's shut down with the loss of his brother. He just can't deal and Caroline will make him deal and he's not ready.

Poor, poor Caroline. She's just so dang lost. She lost Bonnie, she lost Stefan and in a way she's lost her mother and Elena too. Girl just wants the gang back together so badly. I mean she even included Damon—without reservation—when she said "our closest friends." And there was not one Damon snark/insult at all. Nor were there any nasty comments made about him being a bad boyfriend or it being a good thing that he was gone from Elena's life. Like wowsers! NOT ONE! Girl really wants the team back together. And she spent ALL SUMMER with her mom!? Caroline?! WILLINGLY!?!? WOW! Oh, Caroline. You are really messed up without Bonnie and Stefan and a steady, head-on-straight Elena. I mean, she dropped out of college while Tyler signed up. Talk about a topsy-turvy world.

But at least it's a world we recognize. Where exactly in the world are Damon and Bonnie? I have no idea. You know when I went looking for the music for this episode, the final song listed their location as the afterlife. This confused me. I'm like 'OK so that's them in the afterlife? But wouldn't it be more obvious?' I mean, they're making pancakes, having coffee, reading the paper, sitting in front of a fireplace. I'm just not seeing anything that says afterlife here. Unless that's a spoiler? Because we're not getting it from the episode itself that just aired at all. Anyhoo. So, yeah, I totes knew that that was how this one was going to end. That we would see Damon and Bonnie somewhere. Right after Elena had given up on Damon coming back. Of course. *Of course.*

And, yuppers, looks like I called it, yeah, Damon sure seems human to me. (Fine, according to comments to my massive finale post, plenty of other people did too.) But of course, he's got to be more than human, so I'm still calling Traveler. On the other hand, the whipped cream on the pancakes looked like they were supposed to be fangs which would mean he still is a vampire. Unless...Damon was just annoying Bonnie, which her comment to him seemed to imply. Of course, in that case, they haven't lost any memories, which I kinda figured was probably going to happen. Unless...amnesiac!Damon likes to make vampire jokes (because, of course he would make vampire jokes because the memory is still there buried) thus the whipped cream fangs. So that brings us to who are amnesiac!Damon and amnesiac!Bonnie to each other if they are amnesiac!Damon and amnesiac!Bonnie?

Personally, I hope that they are adopted brother/sister, LOL!, because I think that would be HI-larious! What I really don't want is a random pairing up because (a) that's too predictable and (b) it would just add a very messy complication to the Damon/Jeremy, Elena/Bonnie relationships down the line. I know, I know, the incestuous relationships are so incestuous already, but I just think that it's too much this late in the game. But, yeah, I'm sure that if we are in store for amnesiac!Damon and amnesiac!Bonnie that is what it will be, *sigh.* Or, maybe, maybe, they'll just be really good friends. That would work too. But if we do have amnesiac!Damon and amnesiac!Bonnie, I really, really want adopted brother and sister. Because that would be awesome and HI-larious. Pretty please! If they even go the amnesiac route. Which hopefully they don't. We'll see.

Oh, by the way? Damon in the lumberjack shirt? HI-larious. I legit laughed out loud.

I also laughed out loud when Alaric muttered softly to Elena about drinking blood in class. Hahaha! Oh, Alaric. Alaric. Alaric. *Tries to reach through the television screen and smush you * *Smush* *Smush* *Smush* I missed you. The real you! Your steady, strong, awesome, wry presence. I missed you so. My beloved, bb Alaric! MUAH! And your hair looks fabulous! Even dealing with his situation, kinda freaked out about it—he could so use his buddy, Damon right now—he's still the most got-it-together of all of them. I smush you, Ric, I smush you so hard!

New character Jo that he's sorta crushing on? Not so much. Yeah, Jodi Lyn O'Keefe kinda looking rough and I was never her biggest fan (even going back to her soap opera days) to begin with. I'm not sure I'm gonna really feel this one. On the other hand, I'm liking Gabrielle Walsh's Sarah (the girl that Elena attacked that Matt helped) so far. She seems interesting. (Of course, I didn't dislike Olga Fonda's Nadia in her first appearance so I'm not giving an automatic thumbs up yet.)

Speaking of Matty-blue-blue! Look at you being all buff and responsible, trying to take care of the town even with the supernatural, violent element unable to step right on in. Being smart and proactive, aware that they will return, oh, Matty, I love you so. Hopefully, Sarah is more of a Rebekah and (much, much, much) less of a Nadia (much). As for Jeremy...I think the less said the better. Oh, Jeremy. Jeremy, Jeremy, Jeremy.

Jeremy. {insert sad face}

This leaves us with Tyler, our favorite human-cockroach hybrid. Let's get the obvious out of the way. Michael Trevino is not...the best actor ever. We will move on from there. I'm still curious to see how they're gonna playing this whole 'keep your temper in check' out. I'm not terribly impressed with Tyler's attitude about it so far, but hey, that's Tyler. I do like that they're bringing Alaric into this though and I'm seeing a good chemistry there and that's important to make any story fly. And Alaric can be a good influence. Plus, I appreciated seeing Alaric putting Tyler in his place, but because of the situation, I also felt for Tyler because he was genuinely trying to do the right thing. He was given misinformation (Caroline, Caroline, Caroline!) and flew off the handle (Tyler, Tyler, Tyler!). Hopefully this is where Alaric can step in and work with him in future situations. I could see this working. We'll see.

Also, am I this shallow? But the toned down make-up on Liv (less heavy eye-make-up and paler lipstick) and less 80's over-hairsprayed hair was much more appealing. I wasn't terribly fond of the actress, Penelope Mitchell, and character when she was introduced. I didn't dislike her, but as her episode count increased, I grew to appreciate her struggle with her coven's demands and her relationship with her brother. And I still love Luke, even with what he did leading to Damon's death because it was out of love for his twin.

And I gotta say it, I think I sorta kinda am possibly maybe intrigued by Liv and Tyler? They were kinda cute. I know, I know. But they were! Not as cute as Damon flipping pancakes in a lumberjack shirt and putting little whipped cream fangs on them though!

 


Speaking of Damon, although we saw Ian Somerhalder throughout the episode, honestly, except for the last thirty seconds making those pancakes and snarking with Bonnie, we didn't really see Damon Salvatore in this episode. Elena's hallucination-Damon was just one part of Damon, the sweet, in-love-with-Elena, mildly-snarky Damon, but not the complete package Damon. That wasn't really, fully Damon. So if this episode seemed a little less, I dunno, *oomphier* than most episodes, it's probably because of that. It took me talking with a friend (after I wrote this post initially) to realize that.

OK, then, now we are at the randoms –

- Well, it's nice to finally know why Meredith completely disappeared from Mystic Fall. (Ric's line about his ex marrying a pediatrician and moving to Alaska). Poor Torrey Devitto. I liked her, dangit.

- Wow, that picture from the memorial all the way back from "For Whom the Bell Tolls" which would have been almost a year ago (!!) for Bonnie is STILL there!? And still in such good condition! Damn!

 

- Look at the transition between the scenes above. Did anyone else notice that throughout the episode? There were flashes of white transitioning between scenes. As we got towards the end, I was suddenly struck with the idea that Damon and Bonnie were watching what was going on with the rest of the gang and that's why we were seeing the white transitions reminiscent of the fade to white at the end of the finale. I could be totally off-base, but I couldn't help but wonder. Hmm...

- God, Paul's tattoo is so hideous. I kept getting distracted in that scene with Ivy because all I could focus on was that monstrosity tattooed onto his shoulder. I did, however, kinda like the little bit we saw with her. I wonder if we'll see her again or if she was just a one-off.

- "That's not how our twin powers work," said Liv to Tyler. Hah! Funny, and cute. See, Liv and Tyler are cute.

- Aww, Luke, I do still like him. And I like that the show is touching on him doing all of this for Elena (beyond her being all psycho-threatening him now, of course) because he feels guilty that Damon is gone because he stopped Liv at the end there. As well, I also liked what Liv told Tyler (see, I kinda sorta liked their scenes, what can I say?) about how all those people did live because of what she did.

- What I said above about Damon and Elena and those two eventually being human, well, add Alaric to that now because his mortality (or immortality) is tied to Elena's as far as we know. Well, unless that has changed with him coming back from the Other Side. But I'm not sure why it would have.

- The teaser with the couple attack was like a combination of the first two episode teasers of the series when Damon attacked those couples. First with the girl flying down from the car (at the end of this teaser) similar to the first episode, and the second one began with the couple in the tent as this one began. It was like a Damon/Elena vampire attack parallel. Yeah, that's kinda sick, but hey, it's The Vampire Diaries. :shrugs:

Well, here we go! First episode back. Like I said at the top, it wasn't an OMG!Awesome episode (and, yeah, truly only thirty seconds of Damon Salvatore screentime will do that for ya!) , but I did really like it. I thought it was a strong outing and I'm curious to see where we're going and I don't think you can really ask more from a series premiere. Plus, as a Damon/Elena fan, I was happy. WHEE! My show is back! :)
Tags: caroline forbes, damon salvatore, damon/bonnie, damon/elena, damon/stefan, elena gilbert, ep discussion-tvd, matt donovan, stefan salvatore, stefan/caroline, the vampire diaries, tv
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