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24 July 2015 @ 06:37 am
6.22 - 'I'm Thinking Of You All The While' (The Vampire Diaries)  
Remember when I used to write these long, rambling write-ups after an episode aired? Well, that wasn't quite the case after the finale. But better late than never, right? Or at least well before the next episode airs! Yay!! (I do reference what's been said about Damon's attitude in season 07, but that's the only "spoiler" of sorts I mention.) This is long, but not 10,000+ words long like last season's finale; this was only 9,000+ words. :)

I feel like I'm out of step with the majority of the fandom right now. I know, I know, I'm generally out of step, aren't I? What with my deep, abiding love for the show and my everlasting faith in all things Vampire Diaries. But it feels deeper and as if the divide is greater than ever. That divide is fuelled by the fact that I'm not sad or angry even the slightest over Damon and Elena and how things played out in this episode. I don't feel like it's over at all. I don't understand all of the teeth-gnashing and anger, all of the mournful and reflective gif-sets and videos about their last kiss, last dance, etc.

I don't get it. This is not the end for Damon and Elena. It's not goodbye. And I don't see 'final' or 'last' anywhere and I certainly am not walking away from the show as a Damon/Elena fan and I can't for the life of me figure out why any Damon/Elena fan is. I just don't get it. But that's a lot of what I'm seeing in the fandom... even from people who liked the finale. *sigh* Perhaps that is why it has taken me so very long to write this. I don't know. Maybe it's because I know that the dwindling number of those who read and participate in these discussions will become even smaller after this one because so many are walking away from The Vampire Diaries after this season. Again, I don't know.

What I do know is that I'm not walking away. But it's not just because I don't see what happened in the episode as an end for Damon and Elena, but also because I love The Vampire Diaries. I think I've always made that clear. I don't love this show because of one actor or one couple. I love The Vampire Diaries. I have always said that and I very much do mean it. I will miss Elena terribly, but I don't watch the show for Elena. Or Damon. Or Damon and Elena. They may be my favorite part of the show but (a) their story is NOT over and (b) they aren't all the show is about and not all I love about it. I've always intended to continue watching if it continued even without both Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev. Because I LOVE The Vampire Diaries.

I think it's brilliant, and how they have handled Nina Dobrev's departure has completely justified my faith in my love for it. I know that the show won't be the same, and I know that I likely won't love it as much. *sigh* Yeah, I know that. Because Elena is a HUGE part of my love for the show, but I have no doubt that the LOVE OF ELENA will be imbued in the show.

I think of those three episodes when Katherine took over Elena's body and it was just not as fun. Even though we had Nina Dobrev on the show, we didn't have Elena, but I honestly feel that the spirit of Elena will be felt more strongly on a regular basis throughout the thread of the series next season than did the essence of Elena in those three episodes. Dobrev is such a good actress that in her portrayal of Katherine as Elena, the warmth and the heart of Elena Gilbert was missing and thus that love that connected her to others was missing as well.

However because Elena is the love of Damon's life and because she is the best friend of Bonnie and Caroline, because she is the first girl that Stefan remembered loving after Katherine and Matt's first love and one of their truest friends, and because she is all but Alaric's daughter, even though her physical presence will not be there, her spirit will abound.

Think of it, Jeremy and Elena's parents died before the show began and yet they hold an emotional importance for those two that continued to play out into season 06. We saw Elena and Liz finally connect on an emotional level this season because of Liz dying and how Elena never got to have that chance to say goodbye to her own mother, but she could to Liz. We also got to see the effect of Grayson and Miranda Gilbert's death (and how it happened) affect Liz in her final episode this season. Then there's Vicki, who died in the seventh episode of season 01 and yet continues to hold an emotional resonance for Matt, or Grams, who we lost in episode fourteen of season 01, who is Bonnie's emotional touchstone. Caroline's father, Bill, was referenced in season 05 in a small moment that acknowledged Caroline's grief even though he died in season 03.

These were not major characters. Again, the Gilbert parents died before the show even began and yet they are remembered repeatedly and are emotional touchstones for the characters they impacted. Elena Gilbert was the *lead* character for six years. She is incredibly important and heavily impacted the lives of Damon, Stefan, Matt, Bonnie, Caroline and Alaric. There is simply no way that she will not be threaded throughout the essence of these characters... especially because she's *obviously* coming back. Elena was not written out, she was merely given a bit of a rest, but she was not and will not be forgotten.

But because she will be... resting for that bit, we did get our goodbyes, and I mostly loved them. Of course I loved, loved, loved how they threaded the Damon and Elena goodbye throughout the episode. It was just another way of highlighting the pair and what a gift that Caroline Dries and Julie Plec handed the fanbase. But, more on Damon and Elena later....

First, let's start with the other goodbyes. I liked seeing Elena, Bonnie and Caroline together, sitting on Elena's bed; it gave us a true glimpse of their friendship that frankly has been missing much of the season. (More on that below. Uh huh.) And then Caroline left and it was just Bonnie and Elena, their discussion was perfect, heartwarming and heartbreaking at the same time. The love and friendship that the two share was so perfectly embodied in not just their words, but in the performances of Nina Dobrev and Kat Graham.

It's not hard to believe that there wasn't some real-life emotion seeping in there but it didn't in any way detract from the emotion of the scene. How Bonnie, of course, felt guilt that she was taking Elena away from her life now just to live and how just as obviously Elena would hear absolutely none of that. The most important thing to Elena has always been that those she loves are alive and safe. Had Bonnie lost her life just so that Elena could live happily ever after with Damon just never would have happened in any future Elena could envision because Elena Gilbert is just not built that way. And quickly, ultimately Bonnie knew that and so the guilt could be pushed aside so the two could just embrace the love they shared and enjoy their final moments together.

And they did. Sitting there on the bed, facing one another in the positions they were, it all looked so familiar to me. I just knew what was coming and that is when the tears began. Sure it was a little sappy, but I didn't care. When Bonnie revealed to Elena that she was a witch in "162 Candles," early in season 01, it was not only my favorite Elena/Bonnie scene, it was one of my all-time favorite scenes on the show ever. So when Elena asked her to make those feathers fly one more time… *sigh* it just warmed my heart and made the tears fall.

 

I absolutely adored it.

And then those bastards had to go with Elena and Matt on Wickery Bridge. They seriously couldn't have picked a better spot for those two. Those scenes in "Our Town" were a turning point for Matt and Elena's relationship post break-up. It was in that scene that Matt finally began to put Elena into the past and see her as his friend again instead of his ex-girlfriend. Therefore to see the callback to that moment (although, admittedly, it was *such* a memorable scene, what else could they have chosen?) was so lovely because here and now in this goodbye it was Matt saying goodbye to the girl who had been his friend, really his *best friend* his whole life. Oh Matty, my beloved Matty. *sigh* He just... even now writing this, I'm getting emotional thinking of how hard it was for him to say goodbye to her because he knew that he would never see her again, and unlike the other non-vampires, Matt didn't have other things on his mind to distract him from that thought.

 

And just like with Bonnie, Elena wouldn't let him dwell on the negative, because she has found a measure of peace and happiness in her life that she'd been missing since before her parents' death and she refused to let those she loved mourn her when she was not dead. She was just taking a very long nap. It was their time to live. She would have her chance later... with the love of her life and she would be happy then. So they needed to have their chance to be happy now.

Because Elena Gilbert is awesome like that. And I love her.

Is it any wonder that all of her friends, including exes, love her too? Of course not. What I do find a wonder is that one of my least favorite settings ever in the history of the show I found perfect as a callback here. Of course I'm talking about Stefan and Elena hiking up to those damn waterfalls. I mean, really, of course they would go there. Of course they would. And as an anti-Stefan/Elena as a couple-fan, it truly is perfect because this was the spot where Elena told him "I don't know what love is." And she said this after telling him for the last year that she loved him, yeah, she really loved him. Uh huh. And where she admitted that she didn't want to be a vampire, thus be with him forever. This was the spot where the beginning of the end began for Stefan and Elena. So to say goodbye to each other here was absolutely perfect.

As for their conversation, I had exactly zero issues with it and agreed with everything they said to one another. Elena has a special relationship with Stefan. He did save her life. I've repeated that over and over again throughout the series in many of my write-ups. I've also said plenty of times that Elena will ALWAYS view Stefan through rose-colored glasses *because* he saved her and gave her a new lease on life after her parents died. I also agree with her that he does know her best in a way because they are very similar (which is why they make such fabulous friends, if such lousy lovers). They both have a tendency to want to hide away and to not face reality; they view the world in the same way. Stefan and Elena see that in each other, and it's also why they both probably love Damon so much and just can't ever quit him. As a goodbye to each other, I thought it was perfectly done.

And then we get to the ones I wasn't as enthused with... like Alaric's. Firstly, I don't know that I would have been as less moved by his had he not been podperson-Alaric (more on that below) or had their goodbye been more about Elena and less about (ugh) Jo and his pity-party about her and, yeah, I know, the twins. Gosh, I know I should care, but I so do not. I just do not. Still, it was a good spot callback-wise. It just... eh.

On the other hand, the callback spot for Jeremy and Elena just had no significance whatsoever. While Jeremy and Elena had a great sibling relationship in terms of emotional bonding, the only spot that would have worked really for me would have been the one where they were walking by the water from that scene in season 01 when she told him that they weren't biologically brother and sister. That remains my favorite scene with them and so I was hoping for that. Not only did we not get it, there was also the irrelevant spot used in addition to the fact that with how Jeremy's story played out this season especially in relation to Elena, it did ding the intensity of the emotional connection here. Ah well. So I was disappointed, but hey, at least they got a goodbye!

Unlike Elena and Caroline. Yes, we got the few seconds just as Bonnie came in and the hug between the two that was a shared moment between just them and it was sweet and lovely but Bonnie was there in the room and it was a callback memory to a beautiful Bonnie and Elena scene. There was nothing that was special or unique to Caroline and Elena, like if we had seen the two on the Salvatore couch or on the steps of Caroline's house. That would have been really nice, and having Elena tell Caroline how amazing she is and that she has always been as good as anybody else or something like that would have been a true thing to their history. That would have been about them and would have been awesome. Ah well. I don't know. I just really don't understand why there was no true goodbye scene between those two who are best friends... especially since they took the time to craft one between Elena and, uhm, Tyler? And feature it (before Damon and Elena, of course) as the last goodbye scene. Really?

I don't know, maybe I'm the only one who feels this way, but his goodbye to Elena just felt so plugged in and out of place. It was like 'oh, we have to throw in a scene with these two since they are both original cast members and both actors are leaving.' However, it didn't feel earned because the two characters have shared very little onscreen interaction. I can literally think of four episodes ("The Hybrid," "Crying Wolf," "Before Sunset" and "The World Has Turned and Left Me Here") that had any kind of meaningful interaction between the two. And there was one, maybe two scenes, in each of those episodes. In SIX seasons. So to feature Tyler's scene last and have it even mean anything... well, it just didn't frankly. But here's the rub: It could have.

In "Yellow Ledbetter," we saw a picture of Elena and Tyler in her dorm room and I was like, "What? Really?" But I thought to myself that maybe Elena and Tyler had become closer during the summer because of circumstances. However we never saw anything play out that gave credence to that friendly picture of the two or its placement on her dorm room dresser, but again, it could have. Without Jeremy or Matt in their sphere because of the no-magic-zone of Mystic Falls, with Damon and Bonnie in 1994, Stefan in Savannah and Caroline not herself, it would have made sense that Elena and Tyler would have become closer friends. But we never saw it. Therefore, seeing Tyler's goodbye scene allotted the final slot while Caroline didn't even get a true one stuck out like a sore thumb and even more so because there was nothing special about the setting or specific to Elena and Tyler about the dialogue.

If they had to give him a goodbye, have it second and then have him run into Jeremy as he was leaving for a little moment with them. Because, you know, *that* would have been nice: Having a Jeremy and Tyler moment. Of course, there may have been one but it was just cut since Caroline Dries indicated that Tyler left with Jeremy to go vampire-hunting in a post-finale interview, but actually seeing it on the show would have been nice. Regardless, the point is that since there has never been any kind of significant friendship between Tyler and Elena, the goodbye didn't feel organic to their relationship on the show, but rather a show-produced moment because both actors were leaving. Still, while it may have been the last goodbye between Elena and her friends and family, it was not the last goodbye of the episode. No, that was saved for Damon. Of course. And whereas the other goodbyes featured a specific callback or memory, if you will, Damon and Elena's goodbye (for now) was just overflowing with them.

I will say that when first watching the episode, I was a wee put out by the fact that the Damon and Elena dance was intercut with the Stefan and Caroline talk because I just simply could not enjoy my beloved Stefan and Caroline or you know, my pretty, pretty Damon and Elena and their moonlight dance. I wanted to get back to Damon and Elena and their pretty, pretty moonlight dancing. I would start to get all caught up in them and then boom, it would cut back to Stefan and Caroline and I would be like "Go away!" then we'd go back to the dance (*sigh*) and I would get swept up into it and then damn, cut to Stefan and Caroline and I'm like "GO AWAY!" Then back to Damon and Elena, swept away, and then grr, Stefan and Caroline (and I luff them!, but not now!). *double sigh*

But this was my first watching of the scene when I just wanted DAMONANDELENA!SQUEE!DAMONANDELENA!SQUEE!DAMONANDELENA!SQUEE! After a rewatch (or two), I'm able to better appreciate what the intention was by including Stefan and Caroline. Or rather, intentions. Firstly, as was perfectly clear, the goodbyes were meant to recall important moments that Elena shared with those closest to her and there were so many callbacks in the Damon and Elena goodbye overall to various scenes. This Stefan and Caroline intercutting between their dance was just one of those callbacks. I mean, what Damon and Elena fan can forget the infamous breakaways to Stefan and Caroline the first time that Damon and Elena made love in "My Brother's Keeper?" Seriously? That's pretty much the ultimate callback. You can't say that Julie Plec and Caroline Dries do not have a sense of humor. Hahahahahaha!

There were plenty, plenty other callbacks, but there were also other reasons to include Stefan's speech to Caroline during that beautiful Damon and Elena dance. There was his list of reasons as to how loving Caroline had changed his life.

Stefan: You were by my side when I needed a friend. You made me laugh. You made me dance. You told me that I would find love again.
Other than the last line which doesn't apply because Elena didn't tell Damon that, the rest all apply… however, if you watch how the scenes play over the dialogue, the writers, director and editors understood that and placed everything together perfectly to show that. The first line, You were by my side when I needed a friend. is spoken over Damon and Elena dancing. The second line, You made me laugh. we see Stefan and Caroline but then it switches back to Damon and Elena and you see Elena laughing as she leans into Damon and the scene remains on them as Stefan's next line, You made me dance continues. And then it returns to Stefan and Caroline as he says You told me that I would find love again, and then we see this look from Damon to Elena…

     

… making it crystal clear that Damon found love again with Elena (because he did think he loved Katherine once upon a time), so that everything that Stefan was saying to Caroline applied to Damon and Elena as well. Finally, by combining the Damon and Elena, and Stefan and Caroline final *love* scenes it felt in a way as if the show was passing the torch because after all this isn't The Damon/Elena Diaries, but The Vampire Diaries. So, yeah, I'm OK with the final scene blending the two especially since (a) both scenes were filled with such love for and to each couple equally, (b) the focus was heavily skewed towards and ended on Damon and Elena, and (c) it was easy enough for me to separate and make a lovely Damon/Elena only version. See:

     

As for all of those other callbacks I mentioned above, well, aside from the, erm, lovely, one to "My Brother's Keeper," we also had the Damon on the road where he and Elena first met. And what was nice about this one is that it was a combination of both Elena as a human and as a vampire. She was a human when they met, but only remembered the meeting as a vampire, and now of course she's a human once more remembering both the meeting as a human with a human's sensibilities and remembering it as a vampire did. Why does this matter? Because in all of the callbacks that there are with Damon and Elena there are a mix of when she was human and when she was a vampire, and this one contained both and began the callbacks being at the start of the episode. But again, why does it matter? Because with everyone else (except Jeremy and Tyler whose goodbyes didn't contain a particular callback), the memory was from when Elena was human.

I didn't see this as saying that her friends saw her as less when she was a vampire or that they loved her less, but rather that once she became a vampire, she found her soulmate in Damon. And think of how it is in real life, when someone finds the person they plan on spending the rest of their life with, that person more or less becomes the center of their world. That's just life. Their home, their children, their decisions, etc. become about that person, their lives.

So it makes sense that her friends' most cherished memories would go back to her in the pre-vampire days because post-vampire Elena was more wrapped up in Damon. And, yes, it is also true that unlike everyone else Damon unconditionally accepted and loved her as a vampire just as much as he accepted and loved her as a human. And by showing vampire and human callbacks with only Damon, it did show in a small way that as much as they loved her, her friends were always most comfortable with her as a human and knew her best as a human. *sigh*

And now for funsies, here are even more parallels that were seen a'plenty during the dance itself...

 
 
 
 
 

And another parallel, I think, is the fact that the song played over the dance was "Hunger" and it was sung by Ross Copperman. Ross Copperman, of course, sang "Holding On And Letting Go" the song that played over Damon and Elena's first real kiss in "The New Deal." Knowing that out of all of the artists in the world, they chose a song sung by the same guy who performed the song that played over their first kiss just gave me all the feels in the universe. And what a song! And, here's the other thing. Now, I haven't read the books, but I do know that Julie Plec has read at least some of them and I also know that in them, Damon and Elena are known as "Twin Flames." I bring this up because I can't help but think that another reason they chose the song "Hunger" is because of that "Twin Flames" connection. I mean, look at the lyrics of this song!

"Hunger" by Ross Copperman

One look and I can't catch my breath
Two souls into one flesh
When you're not next to me
I'm incomplete
'Cause I'm on fire like a thousand suns
I couldn't put it out even if I wanted to
These flames tonight
Look into my eyes and say you want me too
Like I want you

Oh love, let me see inside your heart
All the cracks and broken parts
The shadows in the light
There's no need to hide
'Cause I'm on fire like a thousand suns
I couldn't put it out even if I wanted to
These flames tonight
Look into my eyes and say you want me too
Like I want you

It's like a hunger in me
And it is never ending
Yeah, and I burn for you (I burn for you)
It's like a hunger in me
Yeah, it is never ending
Yeah, and I burn for you (I burn)

I'm on fire like a thousand suns
I couldn't put it out even if I wanted to
These flames tonight
Look into my eyes and say you want me too
Like I want you
I got a hunger in me
I got a hunger in me
That seriously calls out to the whole Twin Flames concept there now, doesn't it? And I've listened to the song about a gazillion times and I didn't even catch onto it until recently. (Although I'm sure others who've read the books have.) I just can't imagine that Plec and co. did not make this choice intentionally. Therefore, yet another lovely, lovely gift to the Damon and Elena fanbase.

As was that ridiculous, over-the-top, fancy, schmancy, sweep-me-away dance at the end there. I was so not expecting that. But. I. Loved. It! I don't care if it was ridiculous. And over the top. And fancy, schmancy. And came out of nowhere. I. Don't. Care. I loved it, loved, loved it. It made me swoon and sigh and I just loved it and I love it every time I watch it. Fanbases seriously don't get this type of stuff anymore. I mean, we just don't. But, uhm, we did! We actually did. Damon in a tuxedo, Elena in a fancy dress, dancing beautifully, romantically in the moonlight, in swoops and fancy turns, dipping and swaying and it was just blissful and gorgeous and unbelievable. I loved every moment and I'm so grateful to Caroline Dries and Julie Plec for giving this to me as a Damon and Elena fan. Not only could I have not asked for more, I couldn't have even imagined anything possibly better than what they gave us. But more on that later, first my favorite moments of the dance in particular…

I loved, loved when they began and they did the no-hands touching that we first saw in "Miss Mystic Falls." Oh dear Lord, I was slayed. Just slayed dead. And the looks they gave each other. Oh. My. Sweet. Heaven! *sigh* Elena holding back tears one moment, laughing another. And then those three twirly turns were absolutely hands-down my favorite, favorite, favoritest part. I just loved it so hard. I rewound that section about a billion times. It was just so, so, so, soooo pretty! ALL OF IT!! SO, SO MUCH TO LOVE!

See?!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Pretty, pretty, pretty! It was all so, so very pretty.

And I am happy with where this is now and where this will wind up, even if we aren't there yet. Elena is human. And when Ian Somerhalder is ready to leave the show, Damon will be human with her. And it's always been leading to this. I've seen this coming all along. And nothing, absolutely nothing at all felt wrong, felt off or untrue in any way to Damon and Elena and their love story AT ALL. So everything in Damon and Elena's story that played out in this episode felt so right, so true to their love story, to their characters. I just loved it so much. I am so happy!

And what I said above about not being able to imagine the show possibly giving us anything better than they gave the Damon/Elena fanbase is true. Everything I thought of, all I came up with, none of it compared to the utter perfection that they presented. I am in complete awe at what they managed to do and am in complete love with them for what they pulled off.

Caroline Dries and Julie Plec managed to make Damon and Elena's love story COMPLETELY sacrosanct until Nina Dobrev comes back to usher Ian Somerhalder off the show so that Damon and Elena can live out their human lives happily ever after. This could have gone down so terribly in so many ways for this fanbase. They could have easily ended Damon and Elena. She becomes human and is compelled for her safety to leave town and move on with her life. Or she becomes human, realizes she can't be with Damon as he is as a vampire so that's why she leaves town. With the loss of her memories, she doesn't fall back in love with him and leaves town. Or the worstest... she becomes human and dies.

Instead, even without her memories, even becoming human... Elena still madly, forever loves him, chooses him, wants him. She is willing to give up humanity for him. He is willing to give up vampirism for her. They literally proved they have the truest, purest, most absolute love of all. It is real; nothing can come between them. And where we've known that Damon will ALWAYS choose Elena, now we know that Elena will ALWAYS choose Damon. And with the Sleeping Beauty set-up, their love story is simply put on pause until Ian Somerhalder leaves the show. Once Nina Dobrev comes back, they figure some magic witchy-woo to wake her up (which the writers no-doubt already have done) and voila!, Damon and Elena get their happy ending and walk off into the sunset.

I mean, holy cow! It's just freaking amazing! And by setting it up this way, Damon is not going to have another love interest. He's going to be occupied with what's going on with his mother and her new "family" and the holy hell that has been wrecked onto Mystic Falls. Besides he already has his girl, he'll just be waiting until it's time for her to come back to him. And as stated above, it's not like Elena will be forgotten. I mean, yes, it sucks that we won't see Elena (so hard!), but, the show couldn't have made it any clearer that when Damon leaves Mystic Falls it will be when Elena comes back and then they (and we) will get our happy ending.

Elena's presence will still absolutely be felt as I mentioned above. Elena's name is going to be mentioned a lot I have to imagine. Again, we still hear about her parents and Vicki and other characters that left years ago. Elena Gilbert will NOT be forgotten and Damon and Elena's love story will continue to be a significant part of Damon Salvatore's story. So as I talked about all the way at the top of the post, no, the last episode didn't feature a last kiss, a last anything. The Damon and Elena love story is not over. It's just on hold while she sleeps in a coffin in his family crypt. Meanwhile, the show has made it abundantly clear that Damon is completely in love with Elena and she's it for him. He waited for Katherine and was celibate for 60 years. He'll have no problem waiting for Elena.

And in the meantime, Damon will be Damon without Elena and yes, yes, no doubt, many of us have heard that he will the "Big, Bad Damon" from season 01 but frankly, I think they're overselling it. Why? Well, a couple of reasons. Firstly, that is what they always do in promotion, oversell the hell out of things and then when the product hits the screen it's not quite what was promised. Secondly, Elena didn't tell Damon to save Bonnie because she knew that he would make the right choice. She knew that he cared about Bonnie and wasn't going to kill her or even let her die because whatever he tries to tell people, that's not who Damon is.

For those people on his list (as he told Alaric), he will take care of them, he will protect them, he will do what's right. And Damon Salvatore has always done that. Even in season 01. When he was big, bad Damon Salvatore. The only difference is that in season 01 Damon only cared about Stefan grudgingly and he didn't want to admit it, Elena and that took time to happen, and the town which didn't hit him in the feels until the end of the season. However, now Damon cares about Stefan, Bonnie, Alaric, Enzo, and yes, Matt, Caroline and the town. So he will be making the right choices and doing the right things a lot more... he'll just be doing them in a much less heart-on-your-sleeve way than he has of late.

And who will be one of those driving forces to keep him on the do-the-right-thing train? Bonnie! It took a while, but I'm glad that we got back to seeing Damon and Bonnie as more how we saw them 1994 Mystic Falls than rather how we'd been seeing them in the present. Hopefully this carries over next season. I have hope that it will, especially considering the circumstances of their last scenes. Damon can't pretend at all anymore that he doesn't truly care, and Bonnie can't ever throw it in his face anymore that he's an unfeeling monster. So things have to change for the better. Uh huh!

What I liked is that the show used Kai's knowledge of Damon and Bonnie's relationship in 1994 and at the same time used the lack of Damon's true self that others have to build tension over what Damon would do. Obviously anyone who's been paying attention to the narrative and doesn't blindly hate the character of Damon Salvatore knew that Damon was going to kill Kai to save Bonnie, but it was still so awesomely directed and acted that I just loved it. Kai's confusion and disappointment, Bonnie's fear, disappointment and sorrow. Damon's faux-regret, joy (at killing Kai) and then relief and tenderness. All so, so good.

And I just loved the little moments in this scene, Damon telling Bonnie she can't die yet because he has more nicknames for. (So much love for that.) And my favorite, favorite, favorite bit! Damon not only beheading Kai, but fulfilling an earlier promise.

 

Oh Damon, may your awesome forever reign! And I'm sure it will. I just hope that certain residents of Mystic Falls will *finally* pick up on it. Matt! Matty, Matty, Matty! You still got some learning to do about Damon, doncha? Why do you think that Kai chose Bonnie? Silly, silly Matt. For serious, though, I hope that the reason that bit there with Matt and Bonnie was included was because it was supposed to be a counterpoint to the final scene that will lead to a deeper, more understanding relationship between the two next season. I mean, maybe Matt thinking that Damon would kill Bonnie because he only cares about Elena (and being so wrong) was included because we will see next season that Matt now knows that such is not the case. In that end shot, it looked like Matt was protecting Mystic Falls from below, while Damon was protecting from above–tag-teaming as it were. We'll see. I sure hope so. But then you all know that my dreams of a Matt/Damon bromance will always have wings that fly ever upward and onward!

As for that other relationship I so loved, even if it's placement in one scene wasn't exactly my favorite… Paging Stefan and Caroline.

First off, I have got to say it one more time for the road. I am telling ya!, Caroline Dries has a checklist this season and she checked the last one off her list in this episode. I couldn't believe that they actually went there in the Stefan/Caroline scene in Elena's hospital room, but they sure did! Booyah!

Here was Caroline standing over Elena's hospital bed and she's thinking about poor little Stefan's heart and how it must be aching for Elena. Because, nope, Caroline just can't get past the idea that Elena still must come first after all (which is why it really, really would have been nice to have had a goodbye with Elena and Caroline where Elena kicked her in the ass and told her how amazing she was and that she is totally number one and that Stefan never, ever fought for her like he's fighting for Caroline, but I digress!). Anyhoo, it was actually nice to have this moment for them because it gave Stefan at least the opportunity to completely blow that idea to smithereens. He basically was all, 'Nah!' And he just explained that the real reason that he and Elena even got together was so that she could eventually be with Damon and then could re-connect him with his brother. AND that his brother was more important to him than Elena was.

Excuse me while I take a bow.

Because I've only been saying this for, like, oh, EVER!

Finally, because there really wasn't that much Stefan and Caroline isn't this episode what with all of the goodbyes to Elena and the Kai-machinations and Kai-killing and killing-Kai and fancy-schmancy Damon/Elena dancing going on, I did want to touch upon their final scenes among Damon and Elena's final scene before it became just Damon and Elena's final scene (for now).

Stefan made a list! O.M.G. Stefan Salvatore made a list for Caroline Forbes. I love it so hard! Just like Caroline was always making lists! Stefan made a list for her! So perfect for each other!! And she looked so happy. And he was so understanding of why she needed her time, and he just needed her to know that he understood but that he loved her and why he loved her and that he would be waiting and it was really, really beautiful you guys. And, and I know I've been blubbering on and on about how much I love Damon and Elena and how I really do think taking the season as a whole they've done an amazing job with this final full Damon and Elena season. However, I have to say as a first full season of Stefan and Caroline as a couple, I am beyond thrilled as well. Stefan and Caroline have been pretty much perfect. I have literally zero complaints. Z-E-R-O!

 

Caroline's face in this last gif? My face when thinking about just how perfect Stefan and Caroline have been this season. Surprise and joy that a new couple could be written this well because, damn! Go Caroline Dries. I ♥ you so.

OK then, time for randoms…

- I know I mentioned above that I was disappointed in the lack of a solo Caroline and Elena goodbye (and I was), but I won't deny that the little bit we got of them and the bit with the three girls wasn't beautiful. So I did make a few gifs of that.

 

- I was glad to see Jeremy back, but sadly his arrival and departure did rather show that he no longer fits on the canvas. And until I was writing down my thoughts on him, I actually didn't even think about him and Bonnie at all and the fact that they didn't interact. Ah well. My sunshine and puppies couple really is lost to me.

- Figures, the first episode that actually features Steven R. McQueen is the first episode where they take his name OUT of the opening credits.

- *sigh* I should have felt sad for Alaric when he put his dead-non-bride in his trunk and sat all tear-stricken in his car and pulled the gun out, but I just was thinking—I don't care. I don't know who this guy is. He's certainly not Alaric Saltzman. *double sigh*

- Tyler killing Liv in the same way that she saved him from going all werewolf-y by killing that car crash victim of his was heartbreaking. And yet I couldn't help but think in the midst of it, oh, Tyler, you really are a cockroach. Nothing will ever kill you, will it? I just couldn't help it. Still, that was a beautiful scene. One of the best death scenes a character has been given on this show, I think.

For me it wasn't about Tyler making that choice. It wasn't at all about TYLER. It was about LIV. Liv was going to die. There was no two ways about it. Nothing was going to save her. She was dying. Tyler was dying. Both of them were going to die. It was literally a case of they both die, or one of them lives. And because she loves him, she said take my life with my blessing because I love you and this way we both don't die. So that at least I can live on in your memory. So that I can die at least knowing that you lived... and that you lived because of me. That I was able to give you that, and that Kai wasn't able to take that from me. I loved that Liv was given that power in her final moments.

- Once more, Tyler... a human-werewolf-cockroach hybrid. And on he lives.

- There's not much to say about Lily and her "family" at this point, I don't think, as it was more of a set-up as them being the "Big Bads" for next season.

- Hmm, I do think that Stefan walking away from her with his pronouncement that he's done with her may wind up having repercussions for him and Damon though.

- Oh, man, Kai, a few of his quotes slayed me. "Sorry about the twinsies" to Alaric. So wrong, so very, very wrong, but I so inappropriately snickered. Kai is the most hilarious worst. And then after Tyler bit him: "Bad doggy." LOL! I will miss my precious Kai. I really will. Hands down, THE best villain this show has ever had. Chris Wood, I love you.

- So I'm wondering how much time passed in that fast-forward in the end? Two years? Five years? Ten years? Matt is obviously a deputy now. Damon looks like he's watching over things too. The town is a wreck. I'm thinking that, yeah, Lily and her family have something to do with it. Uh huh. Hmm.... I am all a'curious indeed.

- Speaking a bit more of Matt and Damon, that final scene (which I really *do* think is Damon watching over things) and diving into the whole Damon/Bonnie supposed potential brought on by *that scene,* well, here be my take on it. The writers are not shippers; they don't write the show with shipper goggles (for the most part–that Damon/Elena dance–so done FOR the shippers, but considering Nina Dobrev was leaving, that was intentional). We see a guy carrying the "damsel-in-distress" for two reasons:

1. For the sweeping romantic moment.
2. To show that said guy is A hero.

The purpose of that scene was for scenario #2. We can't look at the moment in a vacuum, but rather at the whole narrative. There was a reason we had the earlier scene with Matt and Bonnie where he told her to leave town because Damon would choose Elena over everyone and would kill Bonnie. There we have the first two players setting up Damon in "A Hero scenario." Then we come to the scene with Damon and Bonnie where he carries her in his arm, saving the damsel-in-distress, featuring the next pair of players.

Then note how the scene is shot. Once Damon picked Bonnie up, he doesn't look down at her, there's no tenderness. Instead he is looking straight ahead, intensely focused, absolutely in HERO mode. Also, there is no full-shot of him carrying her so you don't get the whole swooning, romantic effect. The whole point of the scene is Damon saving the day and his focus of doing so, of making that tough choice. Finally, we have the final scene with Matt driving down the street keeping watching below over Mystic Falls, and Damon above keeping watch over Mystic Falls, the final two players in "A Hero scenario." Matt appears now to be working to protect the town in tandem with the guy in the beginning he thought would choose Elena over everyone else. That middle scene with Bonnie was not about "hero saves the girl;" it was about "despite appearances, this is A hero."

Scene 1 - Matt/Bonnie
Scene 2 - Bonnie/Damon
Scene 3 - Damon/Matt

It all ties together. And that, I believe, is setting us up for Damon and his journey–"despite appearances, this is A hero"–next season. There's a reason that was the final scene of the episode and WHY they included that bit of dialogue in there with Damon and Elena about her knowing that he would make the right choice.

So that was this episode. I know it may seem like I didn't totally love it what with some griping above, but really those were just minor issues in the scheme of things. I adored the episode so hard. So, so, so, sooooo hard. I don't know if it's my favorite finale, but it might be. I thought that Julie Plec and Caroline Dries did an amazing job writing it and that Chris Grismer did a fantastic directorial job. Really, other than the Elena/Tyler scene, I have no real complaint, everything else is just nitpicky. It was just splendid, beautiful, amazing, a capper to a really wonderful season.

Speaking of… here are some thoughts on the overall season. No, it wasn't perfect, and these were the three big issues I had with it and one small-ish issue.

Firstly, I wasn't happy with how the Jeremy situation was handled. I felt there was no conclusion; there was nothing about Elena finding out that he's not in art school, but rather off hunting vampires. The character was misused. I honestly think that if they had decided to build on Damon and Jeremy's relationship when Damon came back and have him confide in Jeremy about Bonnie, it would have beefed up Steven R. McQueen's role and he may have stayed. In that way, Jeremy would have fit in the show still and it would have created a connection between the vampires and non-vampires/vampire hunters. As well, it also would have helped strengthen and continue the growth of the Elena and Jeremy connection which just seemed to fall to the wayside this season.

Secondly, oh boy, Alaric. Alaric, Alaric, Alaric. As a friend said, Matt Davis was just brought back to play the boyfriend in the Gemini story. He certainly wasn't brought back to play Alaric Saltzman because all the things that we love about Alaric have not been present in this guy but for a few random scenes here and there sprinkled throughout the season. I had really believed that there was an explanation. I had a fabulous theory for it and everything. I tied it into his time in the Other Side, his conversion by Esther, etc., but yeah, none of it came into play. Nope, he was just a pod person.

As I mentioned above I didn't even feel anything in the training scenes during the Elena/Alaric goodbye because this guy ain't Alaric, and I didn't care about him and his love story with Jo...another character I didn't care about. They were both fictional nobodies who were thrust onto my show, and one of them was a pod person who took over one of my previously-favorite characters, and the other was a condescending bitch who was mean to my favorite character and took the afore-mentioned one of my previously-favorite characters and sucked him into a vortex of suck. So, again, I didn't care. She's dead... YAY! and next season hopefully the pod person that replaced him will have gone to the grave with her.

Then comes the third biggie and it would something that I referenced in one of my write-ups: The lack of friendships being highlighted. Ironically, the next episode featured some great friendship interaction, but it was one of only a handful of episodes. There was how we rarely saw Matt and Jeremy interact past a few scenes of Matt shaking his head and scolding at Jeremy's drunken mess. Or how beyond a few bromantic moments, we rarely saw Damon and Alaric interacting when Alaric wasn't being an ass, Damon wasn't absurdly apologizing, Ric continued to being an ass and then suddenly everything was fine.

There was Damon, Jeremy and Matt just about not interacting at all. Damon and Bonnie barely interacting once they were both back in present-day Mystic Falls except when they wanted to use each other, exchange things and/or fight. Which led to the sweet, but mystifying statement from Elena to Damon when she said that Bonnie was his best friend. We know that, but how the heck does Elena? We certainly were given nothing onscreen that would indicate her knowledge of this other than Bonnie's knowledge of him wanting to go human, but Elena was surprised by that. Was that supposed to be how we knew? If so, that was way too much filling in the blanks. In previous seasons we would have had scenes with Elena that showed these two were best friends so there would be no doubt that she knew.

As for Elena, Bonnie and Caroline? Friends? What? Pfft? Those three are friends? Really?! Yes, yes, I'm exaggerating, but still we saw less with them and in situations when we should have seen more with them. Damon and Enzo? Hell, those two might as well have never met considering they shared roughly two, maybe three scenes the entire season. And, yes, I adored the Damon/Bonnie friendship in 1994 and in the final episode, but in between? Not so much. Finally, while the Damon/Liz friendship was perfect, prior to this season, ALL of the friendships have been (for the most part) perfectly shown throughout the entire season. Those friendships have been threads that have strengthened and highlighted episodes in beautiful and moving ways. This season, the lack of them has weakened story and character arcs which is a shame and very unlike this show. I truly hope to see a return to strong friendships next season.

Lastly, the one small-ish issue is the casting of Jo and Lily. Honestly, this would have been more of a big issue prior to last season but after the casting of Olga Fonda as Nadia I know just how bad it could be, so considering that both O'Keefe and Annie Wersching can actually act, this is relatively minor.

To be fair, it's easy to blame my issue with Jo on her portrayer, Jodi Lyn O'Keefe, because I'm not particularly fond of the actress. I've seen her in other projects and she's a bit too hard, a bit too cold for my personal taste. However, when thinking it through that's only partially the issue here. There were scenes where O'Keefe genuinely came through and that was because the chemistry between the actors AND the writing of the character worked. (Jo & Liv's scene at the Thanksgiving dinner comes to mind, finding out the connection there helped to bring a softness and humanity that the character had lacked up to that point.)

But the two main problems were that we didn't know who she was as a character because there was little consistency with her. Either she was a condescending, hard-assed bitch, or she was helpless and weepy because those were how she was presented, those two extremes. O'Keefe could play both, but which one was Jo? Not that it would help much, because frankly, both were annoying. And then we come to the second problem. She wasn't a part of the Mystic Falls family. We should have seen her with Ric's friends; she should have been made a part of the group. A few scenes with Elena at the hospital, being a bitch for no reason to Damon, awkwardly showing up at Thanksgiving and then, yes, the great scenes with Liv, don't count. We should have seen her actually hanging out with Ric and Damon (and her being sympathetic to what had happened to him).

Have her hang out with Elena, Caroline and Bonnie upon Bonnie's return—she and Bonnie are both witches, that's a pretty damn big commonality, not to mention the Bennett link. Hell, it certainly would have made the bachelorette party and wedding stuff seem way less forced and random. Instead, all we saw was her with Ric or involved with the Gemini stuff which was all about her and her family. So I don't know how much of this was a writing or a casting problem. Could a better-cast actress have made the character work? Possibly. Probably? I didn't particularly like how Meredith was written, and she wasn't worked that well into the canvas, but I really liked Torrey Devitto. In fact, there was dialogue as delivered by O'Keefe that I particularly didn't like that I actually imagined Devitto saying that would have worked for me. So I'm leaning towards that casting could have fixed the issue for me at least. Probably, yeah.

As for Wersching's Lily. Totally casting. I loved the story they came up with for Mama Salvatore. Every single thing about it. And Wersching, I think, is a very good actress, I just can't stand her. The fact that I think that the story and character for Lily Salvatore is so well-defined and that Wersching can act is the only thing that keeps me from screaming every time she's on screen: "NOOOOOO! Why her?! Of all things good in the universe! WHY HER!?!??!" Ah well. It could have been worse. They could have re-cast Olga Fonda in the role. But seriously had they cast an awesome actress as Mama Salvatore, I'd probably be erecting an altar in her honor. Awesome story, so freaking cool. I've been waiting for Mama Salavatore forever and I love, love, love what they came up with... and then they cast, well, her. Ah well.

So those were my issues with season 06. However, I loved everything else. A LOT. Damon and Elena. Stefan and Caroline. Damon and Stefan. The Liz storyline (even if she died {{SOBS}}, it was still incredibly well-done). Damon and Bonnie. Damon and Elena. The Gemini coven. Kai, my glorious Kai. Mama Salvatore. Damon and Elena. Enzo became a real boy. Ms. Cuddles. Alaric and Enzo. Liv and Tyler. Damon and Elena.

Yeah, I really, really, REALLY loved what we got for Damon and Elena.

What the showrunners did this year for the Damon/Elena fanbase was insanely awesome. This show was BUILT on a triangle COMPLETELY across the board and they DECIMATED the other half in every way, shape, form, whatever you want to call it, possible. They killed it dead. And I can't thank them enough. And this was their last chance to do that with all three players on the canvas. (AND. THEY. DID. IT. BOOYAH!) But, but, but, but.....

{SOBS} ELENA {SOBS}

I will miss Elena dreadfully. I mean terribly, terribly, terribly. I love the character of Elena Gilbert. A lot. But Nina Dobrev wanted to spread her wings (good for her!) when her contract was done. I think that the showrunners did an admirable job in writing out Elena in such a way that did justice to the show and the character, and in such a way that when Ian Somerhalder chooses to spread his wings, Damon and Elena *will* get their happy ending. This season, I think the show did everything they could to give Damon and Elena fans a season worthy of their couple. They made them THE couple. We got to see them fall in love again without a triangle, without any confusion on Elena's part. That was something that had dogged their first falling in love so relentlessly. Elena's "I don't knows" and torn feelings over Stefan. None of that was here this time.

We got flashbacks, and we got kisses in the rain. We got love scenes and we got "I love you's" and sweet and sexy kisses and hot and heavy make-outs. We got talk of future plans and those plans made. We got proposals and all but a wedding. We got dances, we got callbacks. We got every dig that has ever been made about Damon and Elena from those against them ruthlessly stripped away and proven false. We got everything a couple's fandom could dream of... this was the season of Damon and Elena. And, again, at the end of the day, I just don't see how Damon and Elena don't get their happy ending.

As for Elena Gilbert (and Nina Dobrev as a series regular), well, I thought as a farewell, this episode did a wonderful job. It certainly hit me in all the feels, and I very, very much look forward to next season. But, damn, I will miss my Elena... and yes, my Damon and Elena on a regular basis. But my faith—which was rewarded beautifully in this one—remains as constant as ever.
 
 
 
Bogwitch: TVD - Elenabogwitch on July 24th, 2015 12:00 pm (UTC)
Yay! I shall read and digest and turf out my notes and I shall be back!

I wanted to say though that I am also positive - and excited - about the future. I think those who have decided to not to watch on should at least try Season 7 before dismissing it, but that's their decision. It just makes me sad that they make the show just about one thing. I am really going to miss Elena too and maybe the show should have stopped now, but it's a TV show and things don't work like that. I think there's still plenty of entertainment to be had from it though, even without Nina.
Arabian: Elena10arabian on July 24th, 2015 01:31 pm (UTC)
That is exactly how I feel. This show is just way too good to make it only about one character, one couple. And I think that denying what could very potentially be another great season will be a loss on their part, but yes, it's their decision. I'm very excited for next season too.

I look forward to your upcoming notes. :) (I still can't believe I actually wrote the dang thing!)
Matt: Ghidorahghidorah15 on July 24th, 2015 06:42 pm (UTC)
Took ya long enough. :P Heh. But 'twas worth the wait. ;)

Damon and Elena, aka Delena - THE couple. Period. Stefan and Caroline, aka Steroline - also THE couple. Period. Both are endgame. Not a shred of doubt. Thank you, show.

Bonnie - still awesome, and now she and Damon can't be on anything less than good terms. After all, they have a town to protect from Lily and the Heretics.

On that note, Matt - I, too, hope he realizes he was dead wrong about Damon, especially if you're right and Season Seven will be it for Ian Somerhalder. I much prefer your interpretation of that final scene with the two of them to...well, any other interpretation, really. It just makes more sense.

Alaric - yeah, let's hope the real him comes back now that Jo is gone. He was lacking all season.

Tyler - why couldn't he just die? Seriously, he's so useless.

Jeremy - underused for sure. 'Tis a pity.

Kai - excellent villain to the very end. He and Markos were both Complete Monsters, but of very different flavors - variety is good. And I loved that Damon tossed off a Bond One-Liner after decapitating him! Perfect touch. :D

Liv - alas, she died along with her whole family. That's harsh. At least she's with her brother again.

Enzo - I'd call him the Wild Card. Who knows which side he'll end up on?

Sooo yeah - probably the best finale this show has ever done. Let's hope that Season Seven manages to stay strong. And hey, if it proves to be the final season...well, so much the better for Damon and Elena's happy ending. ;)
Arabian: Damon & Elena52arabian on July 27th, 2015 03:41 am (UTC)
Took ya long enough. :P Heh. But 'twas worth the wait. ;)

Phew, that's what I was hoping.

Damon and Elena, aka Delena - THE couple. Period. Stefan and Caroline, aka Steroline - also THE couple. Period. Both are endgame. Not a shred of doubt. Thank you, show.

And that is what I was hoping we would get and boy, oh, boy, did the show DE-liver!

Bonnie - still awesome, and now she and Damon can't be on anything less than good terms. After all, they have a town to protect from Lily and the Heretics.

And Matt, don't forget Matt! Oh, wait you didn't... hehehehe. But, yeah, I hope next season that we finally DO get to see Damon and Bonnie as I had hoped we would see them in present-day MF last season upon their return but did not. I think we will; I really do. Yay! Now to Matt.

On that note, Matt - I, too, hope he realizes he was dead wrong about Damon

I just really can't see why they would have included that scene with him and Bonnie where they made such a big deal about Damon is going to kill you!! You have to leave town Bonnie!! if this wasn't the plan... and then to end the show on Matt and Damon seeming to work in concert, you know?

especially if you're right and Season Seven will be it for Ian Somerhalder.

I really think it will be.

I much prefer your interpretation of that final scene with the two of them to...well, any other interpretation, really. It just makes more sense.

Me too. :D

Alaric - yeah, let's hope the real him comes back now that Jo is gone. He was lacking all season.

We had a few moments. In the hospital room with Damon. With Ms. Cuddles with Damon and Stefan at the Gemini house. Uh, talking to Elena in the classroom when she was drinking blood. Uhm, yeah. A few.

Tyler - why couldn't he just die? Seriously, he's so useless.

Aww, poor cockroach Tyler. At least he's leaving.

Jeremy - underused for sure. 'Tis a pity.

Agreed, SRM and Ian Somerhalder had SUCH fantastic chemistry and Jeremy and Damon had SUCH fantastic potential with such a fabulous dynamic and it was really squandered. Ah well.

Kai - excellent villain to the very end. He and Markos were both Complete Monsters, but of very different flavors - variety is good. And I loved that Damon tossed off a Bond One-Liner after decapitating him! Perfect touch. :D

I do not disagree over all, but as good as Markos was, Kai completely overshadowed him and every other villain. (I don't think of Katherine as a villain, because she was so much more than that.) And Damon, oh, Damon... yeah, perfection as always.

Liv - alas, she died along with her whole family. That's harsh. At least she's with her brother again.

I think the way they set her up, maybe the way the Gemini coven twins were created, maybe they couldn't be complete without their twins anyway. Poor Liv.

Enzo - I'd call him the Wild Card. Who knows which side he'll end up on?

Hopefully, next season will really see a growth of Enzo and when he picks the right side at the end, the real boy that Enzo came will become a full grown man!

Sooo yeah - probably the best finale this show has ever done.

Yeah, probably. Too fresh to fully tell, but yeah, probably.

Let's hope that Season Seven manages to stay strong.

I have faith. I really do trust Caroline Dries.

And hey, if it proves to be the final season...well, so much the better for Damon and Elena's happy ending. ;)

YUPPERS!
jairem08: pic#122702267jairem08 on July 26th, 2015 06:45 pm (UTC)
Firstly thank you so very much for the finale write up. I was anxiously awaiting it. And as always you didn't disappoint. Specially because I knew that it would only be good stuff. As you I do not care for negativity and silliness. I totally stay out of it and just enjoy the show. And I agree we DE's couldn't get any better end under the current circumstances. If anything DE and their love and endgame and whatever you want to call it was totally confirmed and cemented. And as you said if he could wait for Katherine and be celibate for 60 years why he couldn't do that for his true love. His Twin flame. I'm sure the next season will be very much Elena centric. Though I do hope it could be the last season or at least final season for DE, finishing with them walking away together and happy. I truly do hope so. I do have to admit I'm still a bit emotional if I discuss the final and the season or see pics or gifs so didn't even dare to re watch even the most beautiful scenes. But maybe I will get there. I will try and watch the next season. I have to say that just like you I will miss Elena terribly but we never know what we can get surprised with. With me avoiding everything that has to do with spoilers and possible storylines and speculations, anything can be a surprise. In this case I'm very happy you don't do spoilers etc either. I do not believe that Damon will be his 1s season self at all. He might be more ruthless and darker but only to protect his loved ones and the town. I don't want to believe he will go back to the Damon before Elena.

All DE scenes were beautiful. The song by Ross Copperman was stunning and there couldn't' be better one for that scene. Everything just like you wrote. I agree completely.
I'm just puzzled how Beremy was handled. This was just completely swept under the carpet. They didn't even meet properly after Bonnie came back and when Jeremy came back to say goodbye to Elena there was absolutely nothing left between him and Bonnie. It could be time constrains for the episode or because the actor has left etc but I just find it strange that this relationship didn't really have any closure if I can call it that.

Tyler - agree on everything

I also couldn't' give a hoot about Jo. That woman totally irritated me. Could be the casting and the character mix. I did feel bad for Ric in the scene in the car though.

So Kai is gone... I do agree the best villain and psycho ever. Wonder if he really is gone gone.

Very curious what the next season will bring. I'm not sure I will be watching religiously but I will and definitely will follow up your posts. That is for sure.

Beautiful and emotional episode. And it made you tear up. I know you always mentioned that tv and stuff don't really make you cry but this must have been a good one for you. I just cannot get over how great all DE stuff was and how we just got the most beautiful open end that will get closure later. Couldn't get better than that.

For me the episode was very much DE centric so I didn't focus that much on other stuff.

DE rules. Elena will be missed but she will be back. And I think we won't have to way 60 + years for that.
Arabian: Damon & Elena50arabian on July 27th, 2015 04:07 am (UTC)
Firstly thank you so very much. And as always you didn't disappoint.

Thanks as always for commenting and I'm glad it didn't disappoint after the (very) long wait.

As you I do not care for negativity and silliness.

Yup, just don't get or need the negativity!

DE and their love and endgame and whatever you want to call it was totally confirmed and cemented.

Exactly! What we got was so very awesome.

Though I do hope it could be the last season or at least final season for DE, finishing with them walking away together and happy. I truly do hope so.

Yeah, me too. As much as I love Damon, I want next season to be it, and I'm actually almost glad with this working out because this allowed last season to deal with Damon and Elena separately from all of his other relationship and emotional issues. That can be dealt with next season before she comes back and they can leave together! :)

I do have to admit I'm still a bit emotional if I discuss the final and the season or see pics or gifs so didn't even dare to re watch even the most beautiful scenes.

Oh heck, me too. I got weepy writing this two months later!

I will try and watch the next season.

How can you NOT watch next season? It will be so good; I just know it!

With me avoiding everything that has to do with spoilers and possible storylines and speculations, anything can be a surprise. [...] I do not believe that Damon will be his 1s season self at all.

But the show will still be awesome and Damon will be awesome. He'll still have Stefan and Alaric and Bonnie and the town that he loves, oh right, and his love for Elena to sustain him. Not to mention the other great characters and stories going on.

All DE scenes were beautiful. The song by Ross Copperman was stunning and there couldn't' be better one for that scene. Everything just like you wrote.

I'm just puzzled how Beremy was handled. This was just completely swept under the carpet. [...] I just find it strange that this relationship didn't really have any closure if I can call it that.

I don't think it was swept under the carpet. Bonnie basically ended things in a voicemail. She pretty much told him she didn't want to see him and would do it when she was ready. She came back from the dead essentially and instead of trying to see him or talk to him, she left him a voicemail. She had too many things to work through to be with him. She needed time to find herself and figure out how to be before she could even see him. It's been months since he's seen her and he's come back to find out that his sister is essentially dead and he'll likely never see her alive again; his ex-girlfriend who practically died and then cut him out of her life is not going to be high on his list of priorities. Plus, yeah, he's respecting her wishes. She told him SHE would come and see HIM when she was ready. And getting the hell out of this town that took away EVERYONE he has ever loved and is filled with the creatures that he's hunting and killing makes a lot of sense.

So Kai is gone... I do agree the best villain and psycho ever. Wonder if he really is gone gone.

Yeah, the actor, Chris Wood, is the star of Julie Plec's new CW show Containment. (Which, yes, I am SOOOO watching. I do think The Originals is a good show; I just can't with them messing with TVD continuity.)

Very curious what the next season will bring. I'm not sure I will be watching religiously but I will and definitely will follow up your posts. That is for sure.

YOU HAVE TO WATCH!!!

Beautiful and emotional episode. And it made you tear up. I know you always mentioned that tv and stuff don't really make you cry but this must have been a good one for you.

I did cry. I will definitely give TVD this, more than any other TV show, TVD does make me cry on more occasions than any other show ever has.

I just cannot get over how great all DE stuff was and how we just got the most beautiful open end that will get closure later. Couldn't get better than that.

Nope!

DE rules. Elena will be missed but she will be back. And I think we won't have to way 60 + years for that.

Nope!

Edited at 2015-07-27 04:09 am (UTC)
tj2013tj2013 on July 31st, 2015 06:10 am (UTC)
Just checking in and yay, your post is here! Loved it, esp. the gifs!!!
I'll come back later to comment, just wanted to let you know I've seen it and that I'll stick to TVD no matter what, and I'll write as soon as RL gives me a break.
Arabian: Damon13arabian on September 13th, 2015 03:35 am (UTC)
Just checking in and yay, your post is here! Loved it, esp. the gifs!!!

Centuries later. Thank you. :)

I'll come back later to comment, just wanted to let you know I've seen it and that I'll stick to TVD no matter what, and I'll write as soon as RL gives me a break.

And I saw that you did and I will be responding finally!
jairem08: pic#122702267jairem08 on July 31st, 2015 04:58 pm (UTC)
I just peeked in again and saw the gifs and I'm a mess. Not sure how long this will affect me for. So beautiful and sad at the same time. This is a health hazard : )
Arabian: Elena07arabian on September 13th, 2015 03:36 am (UTC)
Well, the show is coming back soon! How are you feeling now?
jairem08jairem08 on October 11th, 2015 01:06 pm (UTC)
Still not there. My heart still aches for them. Still haven't re watched and didn't manage to watch the new season's 1st episode. I have been also extremely busy so my mind slipped. Also I wasn't even aware when the new season starts. I read your write up so all looks good so far I gather. I will post there once I watched.
tj2013tj2013 on August 5th, 2015 09:24 am (UTC)
Thank you for your write-up! As always a great pleasure to read. And I hope you will continue next season!

I am really sad Nina has left the show. I will miss Elena terribly, too.

No way I am going to stop watching. Elena’s spirit will hover above all of them and will influence their thoughts and actions and she will be referenced more often than not, so I hope her being absent won’t be so hard. And I am really curious how the next season is going to play out. How the Damon-Stefan-relationship will unfold, how Stefan and Caroline are going to interact, and how Damon will defend his virtue and will turn down every woman who looks at him admiringly … That will be fun!

I very much liked your analysis on how the showrunners executed Elena’s exit. As a DE-Fan I wouldn’t have minded having both Elena and Damon on my screen in the next season, but they did an excellent job. And I loved your parallel-gifs so hard. Just watching them … so many feelings… ahem.

Why do you think Ian will be leaving after Season 7? And do you expect Nina to come back to TVD after he has left? I thought she was done for good (except maybe one or two guest appearances or so).

Very much looking forward to having two female leads now, Caroline and Bonnie. And I hope they will focus more on the friendships this time. As you pointed out, the friendships – one of the essential topics in TVD - were put on hold.

Do you know if Matt Davis will be a regular next season? If yes, then I really hope they give him something sensible to do. The role of Jo’s boyfriend could have been played by anyone. I want Alaric back. The one and only. Hmph.

No more Tyler! Wow, him killing Liv by strangling her was harsh. Couldn’t he just have broken her neck or something? But I guess that was for the parallel you mentioned…

Curious what Matt’s role will be. And if there will be a time jump. Maybe we will see more Matt-Damon-interaction? I surely wouldn’t mind.

Haha – I am sure Caroline Dries had a list she ticked off!

Anything else you mentioned: totally agree!

Thanks again! Have a great summer!


Arabian: Damon18arabian on September 13th, 2015 03:43 am (UTC)
Thank you for your write-up! As always a great pleasure to read. And I hope you will continue next season!

I plan on it!

I am really sad Nina has left the show. I will miss Elena terribly, too.

Ditto!

No way I am going to stop watching.

Glad to hear it. :)

Elena’s spirit will hover above all of them and will influence their thoughts and actions and she will be referenced more often than not, so I hope her being absent won’t be so hard.

Right. I really don't get it how so many others don't get that.

And I am really curious how the next season is going to play out. How the Damon-Stefan-relationship will unfold, how Stefan and Caroline are going to interact, and how Damon will defend his virtue and will turn down every woman who looks at him admiringly … That will be fun!

Exactimundo!

I very much liked your analysis on how the showrunners executed Elena’s exit. As a DE-Fan I wouldn’t have minded having both Elena and Damon on my screen in the next season, but they did an excellent job.

Exactly. Even after all this time, every time I think about it, I have to admit I'm still in awe at how beautifully they pulled it off. And so respectfully of the D/E fanbase and the D/E love story. *sigh*

Why do you think Ian will be leaving after Season 7?

I just think that (a) he'll be done, and (b) I have zero doubt that the CW shelled out a TRUCKLOAD of cash and won't be willing to do that again for a show in its 8th season that isn't bringing in the huge ratings or buzz any longer.

And do you expect Nina to come back to TVD after he has left? I thought she was done for good (except maybe one or two guest appearances or so).

No way. Nina's gonna come back to usher Ian out. Period.

Very much looking forward to having two female leads now, Caroline and Bonnie. And I hope they will focus more on the friendships this time. As you pointed out, the friendships – one of the essential topics in TVD - were put on hold.

This. (Although, I have a worried feeling that Caroline will be more of a lead than Bonnie and that will cause a for-once legitimate fandom beef.)

Do you know if Matt Davis will be a regular next season?

Yes, he will.

If yes, then I really hope they give him something sensible to do. The role of Jo’s boyfriend could have been played by anyone. I want Alaric back. The one and only. Hmph.

I do read interviews/stuff post the finale and all I read made it seem like Alaric's story will be fairly Damon-centered, about their friendship (at least to begin with), so that's promising.

No more Tyler! Wow, him killing Liv by strangling her was harsh. Couldn’t he just have broken her neck or something? But I guess that was for the parallel you mentioned…

I don't think he could have done that, too violent to the girl he loved.

Curious what Matt’s role will be.

The town watchdog, I imagine. You know, trying to be the moral compass too of the group. Lord knows they'll need it with Elena gone.

And if there will be a time jump.

I believe they'll be time jumps back and forth.

Maybe we will see more Matt-Damon-interaction? I surely wouldn’t mind.

God, I hope so!!!

Thanks again! Have a great summer!

You too, and always, thanks for always being here and sharing your thoughts! :)
vanimy: D/E kissvanimy on August 17th, 2015 04:37 pm (UTC)
PART ONE

I missed your finale entry, which is why I'm responding so late!

Some thoughts in response :

-I agree with you on the lack of focus on friendships this season. The biggest disappointment of all has been Alaric/Damon IMO. What a waste. Also, why bring back Alaric if the only interaction he had was with Jo all season? i think that's what turned me off Jo BTW. I'm not particular fond of the actress but I don't hate her either. The fact a lot of focus was on her (and saving her life) made us go "what?". Coupled with Alaric being obsessed with her all season and not caring about anything else, it was a recipe made for instant distaste. I'm sure that the story would've been more compelling with Meredith in her place, not only because we saw Meredith before but because her character was nicer overall.

-When I first watched the scene with Jeremy coming back for Elena's funeral of some sorts, I was too busy being happy (you might remember my love for Bb!Jeremy) to notice he didn't have any interaction with Bonnie. But then I thought about it and they should've had a small scene between Bonnie and Jeremy. I mean, Jeremy was grieving her death the whole episodes we saw him, Bonnie held on in the other world, thinking about him, they didn't break up over lack of love, so there should've been something there. Just the fact he was seeing her again alive should've been shown.

-But Jeremy's not the only one not surprised Bonnie was back. It reminded me of Damon's return from the dead with no one batting an eyelash except for Stefan. Which brings me to the dead/undead point. I've been disgruntled with the show for some time unlike you ;), not enough to stop watching (I don't want to turn into a basher, why people watch something to diss it is forever going to be a mystery to me), but enough for me to go months without seeing episodes then watching them and liking them but not being too enthusiastic over them. Bonnie's return from the dead, Jeremy's many returns from the dead, Damon's, Elena turning back to human and everything.... *sigh* The show has become a parody of itself. i was rewatching reruns of the first seasons the other day and the show was so different back then. People stayed dead to start with.

-Anyhoo, it brings me to Elena. I was slightly sad at Elena's departure and I agree with you, I thought TPTB treated Nina Dobrev's real departure really well, other showrunners would've killed off her character but they didn't and I'm glad they didn't. But, TBH.... I couldn't care less about Elena being gone. Somewhere along the way, I lost all connection with the character. We've had our disagreement over the cause but let's just say that in my eyes, Elena's been gone for a very long time. I do appreciate some Damon/Elena scenes still, the dance scene, while over-the-top was shot beautifully and with the right music so my old shipper heart was satisfied.

-Kai. He WAS a great villain and had an interesting backstory. Also the casting was spot on. Too bad he got killed off. Mama Salvatore is a good future villain but I agree with you on the casting. So far she's interesting but not riveting.
Arabian: Damon & Elena49arabian on September 13th, 2015 03:58 am (UTC)
I missed your finale entry, which is why I'm responding so late!

No biggie, I'm responding even later!

-I agree with you on the lack of focus on friendships this season. The biggest disappointment of all has been Alaric/Damon IMO. What a waste.

Obviously, I agree. Sigh.

Also, why bring back Alaric if the only interaction he had was with Jo all season? i think that's what turned me off Jo BTW. I'm not particular fond of the actress but I don't hate her either. The fact a lot of focus was on her (and saving her life) made us go "what?". Coupled with Alaric being obsessed with her all season and not caring about anything else, it was a recipe made for instant distaste. I'm sure that the story would've been more compelling with Meredith in her place, not only because we saw Meredith before but because her character was nicer overall.

I can't agree any more. Every word of this just rings so true. I can't say that every bit of the Jo story was a fail. And that every bit of the Alaric return was a fail. However, every single bit of the Jo/Alaric story was a fail. In every single way.

-When I first watched the scene with Jeremy coming back for Elena's funeral of some sorts, I was too busy being happy (you might remember my love for Bb!Jeremy) to notice he didn't have any interaction with Bonnie. But then I thought about it and they should've had a small scene between Bonnie and Jeremy. I mean, Jeremy was grieving her death the whole episodes we saw him, Bonnie held on in the other world, thinking about him, they didn't break up over lack of love, so there should've been something there. Just the fact he was seeing her again alive should've been shown.

I can't disagree, but on the other hand, I honestly think that both Jeremy and Bonnie are suffering from PTSD (obviously Bonnie more than Jeremy) and neither wanted to see each other. And I really did get that from Bonnie's phone call; and considering Jeremy's actions.... when he got rid of Bonnie's phone, that was him letting her go. He left town, he left it all behind and seeing her again would have drawn him back in. Could we have had discussion of that? Yeah, but I got it between the lines personally.

-But Jeremy's not the only one not surprised Bonnie was back. It reminded me of Damon's return from the dead with no one batting an eyelash except for Stefan.

Wait, did you really think we were going to see every character's reaction to Damon's return? Or Bonnie's return? We found out Caroline and Elena's reaction to her being alive (and it was beautiful). The only key one that really mattered for Damon (at that point) was Stefan since Elena's memories were gone. Just as Bonnie's key ones were Caroline and Elena.

Which brings me to the dead/undead point. I've been disgruntled with the show for some time unlike you ;)

Yeah, we disagree on this.

People stayed dead to start with.

Considering there have been probably 50-100 people on this show killed (and some we've ADORED!) and only 4 have come back, I just don't have a problem with it. :shrugs:

Obviously I also completely disagree about Elena, and we'll just leave it at that. :)
vanimy: Jennifer Garnervanimy on August 17th, 2015 04:39 pm (UTC)
PART TWO

-About Damon/Elena, I agree with you, I didn't think it was the end at all, on the contrary. It's obvious they're the endgame, that Damon will find her again, whether in 60 years or next season if they somehow figure out a spell or whatever. But I'm not sure the writers won't try to create a semblance of triangle while she's gone. I know you don't share the preferences of Bamon shippers but that last scene between Damon and Bonne had "hero saves the girl" undertones. TPTB probably won't go there but I wouldn't put it past them to toy with the possibility enough to get some romance going with Damon in Elena's absence.

-Stefan/Caroline has been one of the few things that never disappointed me. Their story was so well-written this season. That last scene was so sweet and was indeed meant to parallel Damon/Elena. Caroline got also a good character development and story with her mother. Which brings me to Liz's death. It was so well-done and touching.

-I for one didn't find the Liv death scene touching. I was raging. Was I supposed to find that killing the woman you supposedly love to save your skin... romantic?? Or even touching? I'm not even talking about the fact Tyler should've died at least 3 seasons ago because he hasn't been relevant in a long time, but this should've been his opportunity to do something good. No, instead he kills someone to stay alive. I don't care if Liv asked him to do it or whatever, ugh I couldn't stand this scene. Or Tyler.

- I hope Matt gets more screen time next season. I think he will, especially with him being one of the last humans in the show.

I guess I've rambled enough. All in all, I did like the finale.
Arabian: Damon & Elena52arabian on September 13th, 2015 04:18 am (UTC)
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-About Damon/Elena, I agree with you, I didn't think it was the end at all, on the contrary. It's obvious they're the endgame, that Damon will find her again, whether in 60 years or next season if they somehow figure out a spell or whatever.

Yeah, I'm still confused about the reaction by so much of the fanbase.

But I'm not sure the writers won't try to create a semblance of triangle while she's gone. I know you don't share the preferences of Bamon shippers but that last scene between Damon and Bonne had "hero saves the girl" undertones.

Nope, nope, nope. And here's where we disagree. The writers are not shippers; they don't write the show with shipper goggles (for the most part--that D/E dance--so done FOR the shippers, but considering Nina was leaving, that was intentional). We see a guy carrying the "damsel-in-distress" for two reasons:

1. For the sweeping romantic moment.
2. To show that said guy is A hero.

The purpose of that scene was for scenario #2. You were looking at that moment in a vaccuum, not at the whole narrative. There was a reason we had the earlier scene with Matt and Bonnie where he told her to leave town because Damon would choose Elena over everyone and would kill Bonnie. So there are the first two players in showing that Damon is "A Hero scenario." Then we come to this scene where Damon saves the damsel-in-distress. And, of course, it features another set of players in "A Hero scenario" set-up. And you have to note how the scene is shot. Once Damon picked Bonnie up, he doesn't look down at her, there's no tenderness. Instead he is looking straight ahead, intensely focused, absolutely in HERO mode. Also, there is no full-shot of him carrying her so you don't get the whole swooning, romantic effect. The whole point of the scene is Damon saving the day and his focus of doing so, of making that tough choice. Finally, we have the final scene with Matt driving down the street keeping watching below over Mystic Falls, and Damon above keeping watch over Mystic Falls, the final two players in "A Hero scenario." Matt appears now to be working to protect the town in tandem with the guy in the beginning he thought would choose Elena over everyone else. That middle scene with Bonnie was not about "hero saves the girl;" it was about "despite appearances, this is A hero."

Scene 1 - Matt/Bonnie
Scene 2 - Bonnie/Damon
Scene 3 - Damon/Matt

It all ties together. And that, I believe, is setting us up for Damon and his journey--"despite appearances, this is A hero"--next season. There's a reason that was the final scene of the episode and WHY they included that bit of dialogue in there with Damon and Elena about her knowing that he would make the right choice.

TPTB probably won't go there but I wouldn't put it past them to toy with the possibility enough to get some romance going with Damon in Elena's absence.

Except every single interview, every single quote, and more importantly, every single scene and every single narrative flow suggests and flat-out says otherwise. So, I'm going with that.

TBC
Arabian: Damon&Matt02arabian on September 13th, 2015 04:19 am (UTC)
2 of 2


Stefan/Caroline has been one of the few things that never disappointed me. Their story was so well-written this season. That last scene was so sweet and was indeed meant to parallel Damon/Elena. Caroline got also a good character development and story with her mother. Which brings me to Liz's death. It was so well-done and touching.

Agreed. :)

I for one didn't find the Liv death scene touching. I was raging. Was I supposed to find that killing the woman you supposedly love to save your skin... romantic??

I guess I didn't see it that way. Because it wasn't about Tyler making that choice. It wasn't at all about TYLER. It was about LIV! Liv was going to die. There was no two ways about it. Nothing was going to save her. She was dying. Tyler was dying. Both of them were going to die. It was literally a case of they both die, or one of them lives. And because she loves him, she said take my life with my blessing because I love you and this way we both don't die. So that at least I can live on in your memory. So that I can die at least knowing that you lived... and that you lived because of me. That I was able to give you that, and that Kai wasn't able to take that from me.

- I hope Matt gets more screen time next season. I think he will, especially with him being one of the last humans in the show.

Oh, I hope so too!! AND MORE DAMON/MATT PLEASE!!!!
Bogwitch: TVD - Damon 1977 Bloodbogwitch on October 8th, 2015 09:49 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I have been AWOL for so long but I wanted to finish my rewatch before I tackled this one and I just finished it with 2 and a half hours to go! (there was a big delay when my Chromecast packed up and I got majorly into a Frasier rewatch as well) This was only the second time I had seen the finale in full, but I think my notes I wrote in May still stand so I am going with them:
Jo’s dead. What a shame. But not one person mentioned her passing! I was a little upset about Liv though, I think the show needed her as an established female character going into next season. There aren’t many girls left and it takes time to invest in cannon fodder new characters.
Although I was sure I would be, I wasn’t satisfied by this finale at all (in the satisfied by the whole series arc sense, not in a quality sense). I suppose I should have realised that I probably never will be unless Damon is finally happy. I think the episode was flawed, but I think the writers were hampered a bit by what they wanted to achieve. I wasn’t that keen on the jumping around in the narrative, but I get why they wouldn’t want to stack up all those goodbyes at the end.
Back when I wrote this, people seemed to think Damon had turned his emotions off; but while I accept that is a possibility and would be understandable, I thought that moment at the end was too ambiguous to call. The devastation of Mystic Falls could be due to Damon on a rampage, but it seemed more likely to me to be due to the Heretics than him.
I’m thinking Bonnie/Damon is a far more likely prospect now that it was last episode. Elena has given her blessing to him to go and be happy. That doesn’t sound like something Damon would be capable of doing, but I can’t see the show continuing without exploiting Ian as their main asset in some kind of ship and Bonnie/Damon is a book ship with a ready fanbase. I really hope they don’t do that though, I don’t think it would be true to either character and Bonnie for certain deserves better than being with someone that wants to be with someone else, even when they can’t be with them in her lifetime (besides, that human/vampire issue kicks in yet again – which begs the question why turning Bonnie wasn’t discussed, even for a moment (Nina’s availability aside) although is that what Kai meant when he said they were not to look for loopholes?)
I think the main thing that bugged me was that I was a bit peeved Elena didn’t think to ask anyone, especially Stefan or Bonnie, to look out for Damon. I think in her position that would have been my main worry, she wouldn’t want to come back and find he has regressed again. She was very accepting of her fate all round though, I thought she was over that trait, but seemingly not.
In all in was a solid finale and I didn’t mind the dancing so much the second time around. It's been a long Summer.
Arabian: Damon17arabian on October 8th, 2015 11:17 pm (UTC)
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Sorry, I have been AWOL for so long but I wanted to finish my rewatch before I tackled this one and I just finished it with 2 and a half hours to go! (there was a big delay when my Chromecast packed up and I got majorly into a Frasier rewatch as well) This was only the second time I had seen the finale in full, but I think my notes I wrote in May still stand so I am going with them:

Ah, I was wondering, but I figured something came up.

Jo’s dead. What a shame. But not one person mentioned her passing! I was a little upset about Liv though, I think the show needed her as an established female character going into next season. There aren’t many girls left and it takes time to invest in cannon fodder new characters.

Yeah, I don't care about Jo, but I liked Liv. I guess with the entire Gemini coven gone and how it was all established (the twins being a part of each other), they figured that she just couldn't exist on her own without being totally depressing non-stop. And as I responded to vanimy, I really liked at least how she went out.

Although I was sure I would be, I wasn’t satisfied by this finale at all (in the satisfied by the whole series arc sense, not in a quality sense).

Hm, we'll have to disagree. I've watched it about three times and I thought they did a fabulous job, really hitting all of the key points. (Well, other than Jeremy, but that to me was an overall arc thing that was brought about mostly by Steven R. McQueen leaving and the story planned for him having to be dropped.) OK, fine, and other than the awkward Tyler/Elena stuff, but that was just a very small thing.

I suppose I should have realised that I probably never will be unless Damon is finally happy.

Well, we got that at the end of season 04. And I imagine that we'll get that at the end of this season (since I'm pretty positive that Ian will be leaving, with Nina coming back with D/E leaving together).

I think the episode was flawed, but I think the writers were hampered a bit by what they wanted to achieve. I wasn’t that keen on the jumping around in the narrative, but I get why they wouldn’t want to stack up all those goodbyes at the end.

Yeah, this is very much a we'll just agree to disagree because as you saw in my post, I do think they achieved beautifully what they intended and I absolutely loved it.

Back when I wrote this, people seemed to think Damon had turned his emotions off;

I have ZERO clue how ANYONE got that, but then you know I don't read tumblr or other blogs when it comes to TVD because I'm so out of step with most of "fandoms" view of TVD because it's so darn pessimistic and negative, and frankly, well, wrong. 9/10 times I'm reading what the show's overall intent is correctly (even if I don't get the actual plot points right)--which is proven down the line--so I'm going to keep going on as I have been and ignore the rest of fandom and just enjoy the show.

while I accept that is a possibility and would be understandable, I thought that moment at the end was too ambiguous to call. The devastation of Mystic Falls could be due to Damon on a rampage, but it seemed more likely to me to be due to the Heretics than him.

Watching the finale again, I don't think it was that at all. And I'm actually bringing up your later point about the whole notion about Bonnie and Damon which I really, really do NOT see happening because it pertains to that. Firstly, the producers have explicitly stated that Bonnie and Damon have a PLATONIC relationship. They have gone out of their way to make that very, very clear not only on screen--which I've noted very clearly--but they've also done that in the press. Very, very clearly, to the point where they have shut down the notion of the idea that they are NOT a platonic relationship. Caroline Dries has even said that any type of romantic thing is something the fans want, but it's not what they are writing. So we have onscreen canon, and the producers/writers saying this. In addition, we have that ending... and that ties into the Bonnie/Damon thing and how I don't think the ending was as ambiguous as others do because I believe it connects to Bonnie and Matt and the scene where Damon rescued Bonnie.

Edited at 2015-10-08 11:24 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Damon & Elena52arabian on October 8th, 2015 11:20 pm (UTC)
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I know that many saw Damon rescuing of her as some big, typical romantic moment, but that's because so many people tend to watch the show with shipper goggles on, but as I told vanimy, (and this is where that ending comes in), that's not how I saw it. The writers are not shippers; they don't write the show with shipper goggles (for the most part--that D/E dance--so done FOR the shippers, but considering Nina was leaving, that was intentional). We see a guy carrying the "damsel-in-distress" for two reasons:

1. For the sweeping romantic moment.
2. To show that said guy is A hero.

The purpose of that scene was for scenario #2. Most were looking at the Damon rescue of Bonnie in a vacuum, not at the whole narrative. There was a reason we had the earlier scene with Matt and Bonnie where he told her to leave town because Damon would choose Elena over everyone and would kill Bonnie. That was the first two players in showing that Damon is "A Hero scenario." Then we come to this scene where Damon saves the damsel-in-distress. And it featured the second set of players in "A Hero scenario" set-up. It was important to note how the scene was shot. Once Damon picked Bonnie up, he didn't look down at her, there was no tenderness. Instead he was looking straight ahead, intensely focused, absolutely in HERO mode.

Also, there was no full-shot of him carrying her so you didn't get the whole swooning, romantic effect. The whole point of the scene was Damon saving the day and his focus of doing so, of making that tough choice. And here's where we get to that final scene with Matt driving down the street keeping watching below over Mystic Falls, and Damon above keeping watch over Mystic Falls. And now you see that it's not ambiguous. It's the final two players in "A Hero scenario." Matt appears now to be working to protect the town in tandem with the guy in the beginning he thought would choose Elena over everyone else. That middle scene with Bonnie was not about "hero saves the girl;" it was about "despite appearances, this is A hero."

Scene 1 - Matt/Bonnie
Scene 2 - Bonnie/Damon
Scene 3 - Damon/Matt

It all ties together. And that, I believe, is setting us up for Damon and his journey--"despite appearances, this is A hero"--next season. There's a reason that was the final scene of the episode and it's also WHY they included that bit of dialogue in there with Damon and Elena about her knowing that he would make the right choice.

Elena has given her blessing to him to go and be happy. That doesn’t sound like something Damon would be capable of doing

I think the point of that was for Damon to basically say: "Nope, not doing it." That was the point.

but I can’t see the show continuing without exploiting Ian as their main asset in some kind of ship

We've already heard how the show is going around this. Julie and Caroline have said that they're going to have fun with the fact that they've got the sexiest guy who will have women throwing themselves at him, but he's not interested. That's the key. Plus, they can still do flashbacks of Damon with other women from before so they still utilize Damon/Ian in sexual ways, just pre-Elena.

Bonnie/Damon is a book ship with a ready fanbase. I really hope they don’t do that though, I don’t think it would be true to either character

It's not at all. Bonnie would never do that to Elena. Damon would never do that to Elena. Bonnie and Damon have been written as a platonic/sibling relationship. The show has made it perfectly clear that is how they are writing them. Every single interview, every single quote, and more importantly, every single scene and every single narrative flow says that is their relationship.

why turning Bonnie wasn’t discussed, even for a moment (Nina’s availability aside) although is that what Kai meant when he said they were not to look for loopholes?)

Loophole AND Bonnie would never turn willingly. She would never become a vampire. She would die first. Elena knows this so she would never agree to that knowing how Bonnie felt.

Edited at 2015-10-08 11:26 pm (UTC)
Arabian: Elena10arabian on October 8th, 2015 11:21 pm (UTC)
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I think the main thing that bugged me was that I was a bit peeved Elena didn’t think to ask anyone, especially Stefan or Bonnie, to look out for Damon.

Because it wasn't necessary. She knows that Stefan will. She knows that Bonnie will. She knows that Alaric will. She has only so much time with them. Why would she waste the precious time with them on something that she knows will happen? She knows that Stefan loves Damon, and that Bonnie and Alaric are his best friends now. Of course, they'll look out for him. These moments of saying goodbye to them were about them. Not everything is about Damon. It shouldn't be. It's about her relationship with these people that she loves.

I think in her position that would have been my main worry, she wouldn’t want to come back and find he has regressed again.

But that would be insulting to Damon. She knows how strong he is and how far he's come. The fact that she didn't have to say anything... the fact that she didn't tell him what choice to make over Bonnie.... all of that was because she knows that the good inside of Damon who makes the right choices for the people he loves, he's finally at that place. He's there. He doesn't need her to coddle him, or do that for him. He's strong enough. He has enough faith in her and their love, and that has given him enough faith in himself finally now. That was such a beautiful gift she gave him. That showed how much faith and trust and belief she has in him.

She was very accepting of her fate all round though, I thought she was over that trait, but seemingly not.

It was a different kind of acceptance. It wasn't putting her head in her sand. It wasn't her not fighting. Before she would just sit back and let things pass her by and not even put up a fight and sacrifice for everyone without even trying. This was different. She's coming back. And Damon will be there when she wakes up. She gets her happy ending. She gets her true love. She gets her happy life with Damon. And everyone she loves will get a chance at a happy life too. This time there is no way to win this battle. She accepted Klaus' deal before because she wanted to die, because she blamed herself. She's accepting this situation with grace now because there is no choice and at the end of the tunnel, she gets to LIVE, she gets the life she's always wanted. It's the opposite.

In all in was a solid finale and I didn’t mind the dancing so much the second time around.

Like I said, it was completely over-the-top, totally done with shipper goggles FOR the shippers because Nina was leaving (for now). It was an amazing, lovely gift for the Damon/Elena fans.

Edited at 2015-10-08 11:28 pm (UTC)