Arabian (arabian) wrote,

'The Vampire Diaries' Wrap-up Thoughts... 5B/8 -- Seasons 05-08 Favorite Scenes and Moments

At last, here I am with part 2 of this section of my final Vampire Diaries series. Here is the last batch of my favorite scenes or moments. As in the ones from seasons 01-04, some of these may surprise you and some scenes/moments *not* on here will likely be surprising as well. I took my couple-girl bias out of the equation and just tried to take the scene and/or moment on the basis of its own merit (with a bit of the overall narrative at play). (Spoiler alert: This means that certain dances and love scenes are not present!)

Let's go…

Seasons 05-08 Graphic

33.) 5.02 – "True Lies"My Matt and Bonnie feels… they are on overload.

      502-Matt: You died. That's not okay.

Bonnie had been able to communicate with Jeremy since her death at the beginning of the summer, but she hadn't talked to anyone else, and she hadn't touched anyone. So, when Matt was killed by Silas—thankfully while wearing the Gilbert ring—and sent to the Other Side she could spend some time with someone else. Their embrace was more than just a hug between friends who hasn't seen each other in months, it was Bonnie's first touch of human contact period in months and the joy she felt was palpable. However, it wasn't exactly a happy reunion. Matt found out that Bonnie was dead and not off traveling with her vamp-mommy. But it was worse than that, he also learned that he wouldn't even remember that information when he came back to life. So Matt did Matt, he used his time with her on the other side of life to help her. He saw her pain, her loneliness and he gave her some straight talk. He helped her see that she needed to accept her situation; she needed to start to deal. He was there for her, guiding her to some semblance of peace just as she helped guide him back to his body. It was a beautiful highlight of the friendship that permeates this show so beautifully. (And, oh, it helps feed my Matt and Bonnie shipper feels in retrospect!)

34.) 5.04 – "For Whom the Bell Tolls"She says: "I'll be OK, we'll all be OK." No, Bonnie! I'M NOT OK!

      504-Bonnie's Funeral

The funeral of Bonnie Bennett, held just by her closest friends, was so right in just about every possible way it could possibly be right. It was beautiful and everything was perfect. There was Caroline with the pom-poms which signified the cheerleading which was *their* thing to Matt having the whistle that signified the summer lifeguard jobs that was *their* thing. Even having Damon lay down the Bennett grimoire was so right because, of course, what else would their thing be at that point in their relationship? (Down the road, oh, maybe the 1994 version of Miss Cuddles probably.) Back to pre-Damon and Bonnie besties… my favorite of the friendship tokens was Elena and the feathers. Seeing Elena with those made me smile through my tears. Those feathers… ah, that still remains my favorite Elena and Bonnie scene—and one of my favorite moments from the show ever. In season 01's "162 Candles," Bonnie told Elena she was a witch after floating feathers in the air. It was a beautiful, magical moment full of joy and happiness. Oh, and the difference in seeing those feathers float then and in this scene was heartbreaking.

It wasn't just the callbacks to the friendships that worked so well here, though. There was also the way they that Bonnie spoke to them through Jeremy. Beginning with him speaking and then how it transitioned to her moving to each of them, talking first and then both her and Jeremy speaking, and then just Bonnie, before the two of them again. It was very effective. All the while, Elena, Caroline and Matt were looking at Jeremy as he spoke, but you could tell that they could feel Bonnie's presence. It was beautifully done and it *conveyed* the spirit of Bonnie; we could feel them feel her. And I loved what she said to every single one of them, how specific and perfect it was to each. Elena needed to not take the burden of taking care of the others, but she had to try to be happy and live her life. Caroline needed to be keep being Caroline. Matt needed to let go of his anger, because he did have the tendency to hold onto that rage (and, boy, did we see the truth of that).

And then there was Damon for whom she had no message and I was glad of that because he didn't deserve one, not at that point in their relationship… even if he did deserve to be there, for both Elena, Jeremy and even a little bit for himself. He did love Bonnie (we found that out in season 04); he had saved her life more than once, and the two had helped each other out. So, he belonged there. That was right too. As for the other Salvatore, well, I'm glad that Stefan wasn't there because he didn't belong there… not at that juncture. He and Bonnie had never been particularly close, and with his memory loss and pissiness at the time, it really wouldn't have been appropriate to have him there. And the show knew that. On the other hand, despite my Tyler 'The King of Uselessness' Lockwood leanings, I was happy that he showed up, because—again—the show *knew* that Tyler belonged there. When Bonnie said his name and Caroline turned and he walked up, I smiled. He belonged there with the rest of the Scooby gang. Everyone who loved Bonnie and she loved in turn was there to mourn her in spirit and to feel her spirit. The show expressed that magnificently through the writing, acting and direction from the first moment to the last. Oh, and that last was such perfection: Jeremy extending his hand before Bonnie's came into view, and then the mourners were brought into the focus of the frame of those clasped hands. Such perfection.

35.) 5.05 – "Monster's Ball"No, Katherine, you're not in Hell. Not yet, anyway.

      505-Katherine/Jeremy death parallel.

The second death of Katherine Pierce (a.k.a Katerina Petrova) was damn spectacular. Firstly, I got my wish. I had always that that I wanted Damon to be the one to do the deed, and if not him than let it be Elena. I felt that those were the two that she hurt the most. So, to see Damon be the one who killed her was, karmically-speaking, satisfying. And that Elena was there to witness it and not make even the slightest gesture to stop Damon was just about as karmically-speaking satisfying. What—in retrospect after the series' end—makes this even more satisfying is that Katherine's eventual death at Stefan's hand felt right as well. The show pulled their wonderful sleight of hand of giving us our cake and letting us eat it too. So, that made this scene even more enjoyable because I got so many enjoyable 'Katherine-deserved-by-so-and-so-hand's-death scenes.' By giving us Katherine's very believable death on more than one occasion this allowed me to enjoy both Damon, Elena *and* Stefan to partake in taking out Miss Pierce… ah, all so deservedly.

On top of the emotional heft that came with Damon's part in the end of Katherine and Elena's bystander status, there was also how she died. Boy, oh, boy… how she died! It mirrored almost perfectly how Jeremy had died the season before… for real, like, when he had really died and Bonnie had to bring him back from the actual *dead* dead. When that happened, an injured Bonnie had helplessly watched Katherine hold Jeremy down while Silas fed and his hand came up to hold Jeremy in place. And then slowly bb!Jeremy fell to his death and lay sprawled on the cold rock floor while viewers were given an overhead shot of his inert body. In this instance, it was Elena watching as Damon held Katherine down while Silas fed. Once again, his hand held his victim in place until said victim—this time, Katherine—fell slowly to her death and then we got a bird's eye view from above at her lifeless body. Masterful, just masterful.

36.) 5.14 – "No Exit"As if Stefan would EVAR stake Damon. Hah! Silly Katerina.

      514-As if Stefan would kill Damon.

Scenes where Stefan's undying and forever and ever love for his brother shining through always make my heart soar so a scene that highlighted such to a degree as high as this one had to make my list. During the arc where Katherine took over Elena's body she stupidly (so, so stupid) decided that she would get Stefan to kill Damon (as if). And it really was just so, so stupid of her. Incredibly in character, but oh, so stupid, but again so in character and not just for her and because of that it was such a magnificent scene for all three characters in play revealing so much about all of them. There was Katherine's complete self-centered-ness. She claimed to love Stefan so much, and know both him and Damon to the depths of their beings, having known them for a century and a half and yet she still hadn't picked up on the depth of their love for one another.

For Stefan, his love for Damon just shone through every expression on his face, and his confusion over how Elena was acting and reacting to the situation was just growing and growing. Plus, we saw once again, that when it came to his brother, his brain cells began to activate in a way we never saw in any other situation. Finally, Damon… oh my Damon. *sigh* The devastation was written all over his face when the two of them showed up, revealing that Enzo had been absolutely right. As much as Damon hadn't wanted to feast on his vampire buddy, he really, really, really didn't want to kill Stefan and Elena. So, when they showed up, he begged them to leave; he tried to scare them off, but of course Katherine had to play her stupid, stupid game of trying to get Stefan to kill Damon. Ignoring the stake without even a thought and going for a piece of glass to offer up his own blood to tempt Damon away from Elena because he would never stake his brother. Ever. Hah! Oh, Katherine. This scene was just so good with such wonderful execution. It got the emotional, character beats so well from beginning to end.

37.) 5.18 – "Resident Evil"Messy and complicated, but Damon and Elena are real.

      518-Elena: We're real.

While this episode finally put the Stefan and Elena relationship to rest once and for all, it didn't end on a happy note for Damon and Elena. However, that didn't mean that their final scene wasn't a stand-out one. It most certainly was; it was powerful… it was also painful. But so, so good. And the pain was a good pain with Damon saying things that needed to be said and that Elena needed to hear. Damon let her know that he was suffering and wouldn't stand by while she held him at arm's length because she still needed him but was confused. That he finally put his foot down was a wonderful sign of growth. He couldn't see her and not be with her. It hurt him too much. They weren't friends; there was too much passion there alongside the love to just be friends who happen to be in love. He couldn't just wait out her indecisiveness anymore. It hurt too much.

We also saw an Elena facing reality head-on in a way that showed a maturity from her that was splendiferous. Elena saw Damon in pain and she reached out to him. Instead of withdrawing, she went to him, and she put her confusion, and concern over the complications of their situation at bay, and she put him first. Elena saw the difference between the sham of that "amazing" fantasy versus the messy reality she has with Damon. And it hurt that he shut her down and told her he didn't want to see her if they weren't going to be together, but she needed to hear that, and she did; she heard… and she listened. So, yes, painful, but powerful.

38.) 5.22 – "Home"I'm not crying! It's just raining on my face. Like really, really hard!

      522-Damon: I don't have a choice, baby.

Damon's goodbye to Elena in the season 05 finale was yet another grand speech from the older Salvatore to the lovely Elena that went unheard. *sigh* But I heard it and it still guts me to this day. On the surface, it's beautiful and heartbreaking, but when you dig just a little bit, forget about heartbreak… we've moved onto ripping your heart into a million little pieces. Stop and think about this: Damon gave this poignant goodbye that was alternately melting and breaking our hearts because it was so beautiful and filled with so much love, peace and acceptance because he had lived such a long life filled with strife, hate and revenge. He had never truly known love and acceptance before Elena and even though he'd only had it for a short time with her, it was enough. Loving her, being loved by her was worth the previous 173 years versus the brief time spent with her. That was so beautiful, right? Right.

From his perspective. However, think about it from Elena's point of view. There is no alternate of heart melting. There is just the heartbreak. Because Elena has had love. She had the love of both parents. She had family and friends. She's loved and been loved in return for all her life. She's had love, peace and acceptance. It's only in the last few years that she's known strife, danger, fear, and hard times. So, knowing a lifetime of love and then having only a few months with the love of her life wasn't enough for her. It was not enough at all. And on top of that, Damon was looking at Elena; he was seeing her face, touching her, drinking in those last moments and getting to say those final words of love to her. He was being allowed those final memories of her to cherish. But Elena? Elena had nothing but an empty mausoleum. She knew he was there, but she couldn't see him or feel him. She couldn't touch or hear him. All she saw was swirling dust around her; all she could touch was empty air. All she heard were her bitter words; all she had was the memory that he lied to her. Damon promised that he would come back to her; he lied. All she heard was the wind blowing. The sound of her tears. Her heart breaking. My heart was breaking. Yeah, it guts me every time I watch it.

39.) 6.05 – "The World Has Turned and Left Me Here"Oh, my Brothers Salvatore! Bring it in, boys, bring it in!

      605-Damon: I'm Back

Once again it was Stefan's love for Damon that made this scene so powerful for me. After spending the summer pretending to be someone else, pushing away everyone he loved and who loved him, Stefan finally admitted to himself that he was lost without his brother. And it was, of course, then that Damon came back showing up when Stefan needed him the most. And it was just so beautiful, my Brothers Salvatore so filled with love for one another. Stefan reaching out to touch Damon, his eyes shining with unshed tears, wanting to desperately believe that his brother was actually, somehow, miraculously there… and he was. And then he hugged him, but he didn't just hug him, he grabbed him, yanked him, pulled him so fiercely into his arms into such a fervent embrace. Did I mention how beautiful it was? It. Was. Beautiful. Stefan was clinging to his big brother, and Damon was clapping his back and Stefan was crying, practically burying his head into Damon's shoulder and it was just, oh, dear Lord, it was beautiful. Just so beautiful. I cried. Hell yeah, I cried.

40.) 6.14 – "Stay"I'm still not over it.

      614-Liz: I'm exceptionally ordinary.

I loved Sheriff Elizabeth Forbes. And when we lost her, I was devastated. Oh, but her exit story was so, so well done and one of the very best moments was her final scene with her best friend, Damon Salvatore. It was so beautifully written by Caroline Dries (my queen!) and Brian Young and acted by Marguerite MacIntyre. This bit right here, this dialogue—don't get me wrong, the whole scene was well-written, but this right here killed me dead in the heart with the feels—encapsulated everything that was so wonderful about Liz Forbes and her friendship with Damon Salvatore.
Liz: I did everything right, Damon. I lived a good life, took care of my family. It just…
Damon: I know, sometimes really terrible things happen to really amazing people.
Liz: I have to admit there is a certain amount of peace knowing I'll be one of the only people in Mystic Falls to die an ordinary death. I'm exceptionally ordinary. I'm OK with that. Caroline is anything but. She was meant to be extraordinary. She needs to know how proud I am of her.
Damon: She will. You tell her yourself.
The acting by MacIntyre, the changes in her voice from wistfulness to vehemence to regret to sweetness, but most of all when she spoke of Caroline, my goodness, there was so much love, her voice was just filled with such incredible amounts of love it was absolutely heartbreaking. I can't, I just can't ever watch this scene without tearing up. Who she was to the town, to her daughter and to Damon, it's all there in those lines. I was nearly lost in emotion there, my heartstrings were so tugged, near to the breaking point, but Dries and Young used a light touch of humor that not only kept the balance of keeping viewers from falling too deeply into a maudlin well of tears, but also kept Liz, Damon and their friendship completely in character.

As the scene played out, Liz sweetly asking Damon to do her eulogy, but to not make it dirty, no promises, he said, the tears were (mostly) held at bay. Ah, but what a feat they pulled off. With those few lines of dialogue, they also set up the next major arc with Lily Salvatore. What a scene this was, what a grand, wonderful, beautiful scene… brilliant dialogue, a masterclass in acting, longstanding friendship, a mother's love, heartbreak, a touch of sly humor and the introduction of the series' upcoming storyline that would dominate the next 17 episodes contained within? Damn impressive.

41.) 6.15 – "Let Her Go"Caroline, you do you, bb! I understand.

      615-Caroline: That's not your choice to make.

Caroline had held herself together in typical Caroline-fashion after her mother's death, arranging her funeral, giving marching orders to her friends, putting on a brave face and getting through the day… and then the day was over. She was alone in her empty house and her mother wasn't there. Then Elena showed up, doing her typical Elena-thing, being ultra-empathetic, trying to be the best friend she could. Ah, but Caroline didn't need a friend and this show, it was so good at friendship, not just the sweet, sunny, wonderful bond, but also the darker rawness that came with a friendship that has been around for years… that had been through ups and downs and that was not as balanced as others. Elena was there when Caroline was now at her most raw and so she just laid so much out there. It reminded me in a way of the first scene on this list, the one from the Pilot. She told Bonnie back then, back before all of this crazy became a part of their lives that Elena was always the one. Bonnie told her that it wasn't a competition and Caroline told her that it was. She was so not going to sit there and listen to platitudes.

She was looking at reality and facing it head on, whether it was the good or the right or the "friend" thing to say. And she did that here again to Elena. When Elena told her that flipping her switch after losing Jeremy and erasing her memories of loving Damon were two of her biggest mistakes, Caroline shot back that while they may have been mistakes, they got the job done. When she returned from those "mistakes," the worst of her pain was gone and that is what Caroline wanted. And so she made her choice. So raw, so honest, and like I said, she just laid it out there. That's my Caroline and I loved her for it, because it was the truth. And I just loved this truth and that scene because Elena was also right; her choices were the wrong ones, but, but, but… Caroline was right in that Elena had no right in making that choice for Caroline. Choice. On this show, didn't we always come back to that? Choice? I loved this show so damn much, it hurt sometimes.

42.) 6.15 – "Let Her Go"Damon got a Stefan-hug, and Bonnie got a Damon-hug upon their returns. I think Bonnie wins.

      615-Bonnie: One and Only

On the surface, the reunion between Damon and Bonnie was just all smiles and pure happiness (and pancakes) and I loved it so very much from that perspective. Upon coming back from the alternate universe, she went to Damon's house, she made him pancakes! He held his arms out, he gave a genuine smile, she ran, leaping into his arms, his deep chuckle, the happiness, my happiness! And that's enough on its own to make this list because… the happy! But, oh, delve deeper and there is so much more to the beauty of this scene and it's all about the psyche of Miss Bonnie Bennett. Because she had been alone for so long it made perfect sense that she would have gone to see Damon and even with him not there, waited alone, patiently, making pancakes all by herself. She would naturally have felt raw and rusty and she wouldn't want to see anyone else because she would feel almost out of use. What would she say, what would she do? She couldn't just walk back into these people's lives anymore because how would they react, how would she react? Would she completely fall apart? What would happen? To be completely and absolutely alone for that long had to mentally screw with a person beyond conceivable measure. And we know that it did mess her up just a wee bit.

The only person who could have possibly understood would be Damon. But would he even? Think of Bonnie's expression when she first saw him, the tentativeness there and that was perfect too because Damon had been back, he had presumably adjusted. Yes, she and Damon had become friends? buddies? sibs from another mother? over there. But that was over there when it was just the two of them. He had since been back with his brother, with Elena, with Alaric and Enzo. How much had changed? She didn't know. So, Bonnie had sought to make an immediate connection that *he* had created between the two of them in a location that was *theirs* to bridge any potential gap right away and remind him just in case he forgot. All of that was conveyed by Bonnie seeking Damon out, by Bonnie clearly waiting for him, by Bonnie making those pancakes, by the look on her face when she did see him and then by her reaction when he smiled, when he held out his arms. She was a fragile, mental mess on the verge of falling apart and how Damon would react had decided how she would in return. But, of course, his reaction was perfect and so she flew into his arms and that connection was right back where they'd left it. So wonderful. I really, really loved this scene.

43.) 6.22 – "I'll Be Thinking of You All the While"They're so beautiful! I love them so much!

      622-Stefan: I made a list, too

I am not separating the Damon and Elena section from this and listing their part as my favorite "moment" here, but am including the entire Damon/Elena, Stefan/Caroline scene as one of my favorites of the series. While I can (and do) watch the edited version of Damon and Elena happily, what happens with the two couples are connected and what Stefan says to Caroline adds power and beauty to the Damon and Elena segment of the scene. This hit me the most during Stefan's speech to Caroline as to how loving her had changed his life that played over Damon and Elena dancing with applicable lines matching the two in action.
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.
If you watch how the scenes played over the dialogue, the writers, director and editors placed everything together perfectly showing how everything that Stefan was saying to Caroline applied to Damon and Elena as well. But, but, but… oh, my, what it said about Stefan and Caroline was glorious! And, and, and… Stefan made a list! O.M.G. Stefan Salvatore made a list for Caroline Forbes. I loved that so hard! What a wonderful, lovely touch that was and such a boon to Caroline fans who had been so tired of the guys in her life not appreciating her awesome. And here was Stefan not only appreciating her, but knowing how much that would matter to her because Caroline is always making lists… and making speeches. And Stefan made a list for her. And he made a speech. For her. For Caroline Forbes. And she looked so happy. Oh, my Caroline. Oh, my Stefan. *sigh* (I'm choosing to ignore everything after their smiling, happy faces dancing at their reception right now, OK!) 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. How could I exclude the Stefan and Caroline part of this scene? Not possible.

Oh, but my Damon and Elena! *double sigh* I LOVE THEM SO MUCH! One of the things I loved so was the many callbacks. The entire episode had used parallels and callbacks for Elena and her loved ones, ah, but for Damon and Elena, they went to town. Not only was there the intercutting between the two and Stefan and Caroline (ala "My Brother's Keeper"), but there were so many others such as their first meeting on the road and then ther were also moments to (almost) every single one of their past dances in this final one (see all of them gif'ed in the season 06 finale episode post). Speaking of their dance… *sigh* Was it over-the-top? Yes. A wee bit too much, and completely un-Vampire Diaries-like that always managed to stay grounded in reality despite the supernatural crazy? Yes? Did it still work? Absolutely. Why? Because it wasn't reality.

      622-Damon and Elena dance

It was a fantasy that Damon created in Elena's head so therefore it could be this dreamy, over-the-top dance that we would never see happen in their real world. So, it was wonderful, and beautiful and ridiculously, amazingly romantic and I loved every second of it. 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. I loved, loved when they began and they did the no-hands touching that we first saw in "Miss Mystic Falls." And the looks they gave each other. Oh. My. Sweet. Heaven! *sigh* Elena holding back tears one moment, laughing another. Those declarations of love and then closing on the swoon-worthy, old-school dip and kiss.

My heart! It was just so, so, so, soooo pretty! ALL OF IT!! SO, SO MUCH TO LOVE! I LOVE THEM SO MUCH!

44.) 7.09 – "Cold As Ice"Ah well, Nora could have been Bonnie's Tara.

      709-Nora: Nobody needs it.

I did love this little scene between Bonnie and Nora. There were just so many great lines and observations. Bonnie just up and out asking her why she liked the cruel Mary Louise. Nora being honest that it was because of how beautiful and special that she made her feel, how kind and wonderful that Mary Louise was to her. And in turn, Bonnie pointing out the obvious that Mary Louise only treated her that way, and Nora acknowledging that. It was just such a refreshingly honest conversation that was brought about by the two spending the day together because Nora was out from under the influence of Mary Louise and was trying to live in this new world.

What followed then came this little nugget where Bonnie said that she didn't need someone to tell her that she was pretty (which was such an awesome sentiment and so very true). Nora agreed, but then added that it was still something that was nice to hear (which is also very true). And then she told Bonnie that she was a very kind person… and beautiful. Because nobody needs to be told that, but it feels good to hear it. It was just such a lovely moment amidst an overall lovely scene with two actresses (Kat Graham and Scarlett Byrne) who had a sweet chemistry that I still wish had been explored more. Ah well.

45.) 7.10 – "Hell Is Other People"Oh, my Damon!

      710-Damon: Mama, I'm so sorry.

I rather just want to put the whole episode on this list, but to narrow it down to one scene, well, technically two, but the one leads into the other, I have to give it to the last one two. Still stuck in his personal hell, when Lily asked Damon why he hated her, I didn't even think of what she had done to Elena because I knew that it went so beyond that and all the way back to his childhood. So, when Damon cried out, "because you left me," I nodded because, yes, that was why he hated her, but it was still all rooted in his love for her. And that was when I started to tear up and I was just done for when he finally forgave her, begging for the chance to make it right at last. But it was too late because she was gone. And because this was his personal hell, he couldn't get her back; he couldn't fix this.

And then… ah, and then, he woke up and he thought he could just go back and relive the day over again. So, he attacked Matt and Caroline and Bonnie and Stefan but it didn't work. He remained in that room, in the present so Damon just stood there, looking around at all his loved ones lying in a broken pile around him, because of him and the confusion, the shock, the pain writ all over him was just so devastating. That was so powerful, so shocking and so damn good. (I'd still rather pick the whole episode, though.)

46.) 7.17 – "I Went To the Woods"Brother, can you spare the time?

      717-Stefan: You suck at playing hero, brother.

I'm sure that this would not make the list of many because Stefan is the good brother, so noble and selfless, calling out Damon for not being there for him, while Damon is the selfish dick who never cared about anyone before Elena showed him a more enlightened path. I just didn't see it that way for a few reasons. Firstly, in retrospect this was setting up the finale where Stefan got to see firsthand Damon make the willing and hard choice of taking on the responsibility of sacrifice. The very thing he accused Damon of being incapable of doing in the first part of their phone conversation. Secondly, Stefan was hurting so very deeply. As Rayna had pointed out in the previous episode, upon the mark being re-opened, his first instinct had been to find his brother, to go to Damon, to be with Damon. And Damon had found a solution and had offered to save him, to take the mark, to give him peace and he would no longer have to run. And then he bailed on him, after bailing on him three years earlier. Stefan was a bitter baby brother… for very understandable reasons. That bitterness was compounded by his crappy love life (sorry, Valerie, but Caroline was his one true boo), his suddenly being human again and the whole, you know, freezing to death thing. On top of that, he had to rely on Damon to save him… Damon who had just failed spectacularly to save him a few days ago. So, yeah. I understand why Stefan was thinking only of the times that big brother had let him down.

As for Damon, well, we all know that Damon tended to think of himself in the absolute worst light possible and he believed that he was the most selfish person alive (undead) on the planet, true or not. Also, Damon was trying to motivate Stefan to get his ass moving, if anger was going to do the trick, well, what better motivation than bitter pissiness at his big brother, right? So the whys behind the Stefan the saint and Damon the sinner didn't bother me because underneath the surface of all of that was the love. Oh, the love that Stefan feels for his brother because he wanted Damon to save him from the mark and he wanted Damon to save him from the situation he was in now. And just as equally beautiful was Damon's love for Stefan as he used every tool at his disposal (his smarts, his vampirism compulsion, Matt Donovan's name, Stefan's bitterness) to find his brother, to keep him alive long enough to get to him. The heart of their conversation, despite the surface resentment, was all heart. And I loved it.

47.) 8.02 – "Today Will Be Different"Bonnie, girl, you got to tell your friends when you're feeling blue.

      802-Caroline: I am here for you always.

This Bonnie and Caroline scene was just wonderful. How it played out was so beautifully in character, I could have cried. Caroline was completely self-involved, seeing the situation from her point of view but all the while she was looking at the big picture. And, self-involved or not, she *was* looking at the big picture and her perspective wasn't wrong. Caroline was upset because the Scooby plan failed on every level because Bonnie selfishly just thought of her own (undisclosed) plan to get Enzo back. What Caroline didn't consider at any point was what Bonnie was going through and why Bonnie would go rogue. And she didn't do that because, per usual, Bonnie kept all she was feeling to herself. She had been miserable and had kept it locked inside, playing the martyr and wanting her friends to be happy. Still, working with that happy and in love Caroline day in and day out was hard for her.

All of that came tumbling out when Caroline confronted Bonnie over her rogue plan being the cause of their big picture plan falling apart. Caroline was rightfully pissed at her and Bonnie was just as pissed at herself, but some good came out of the epic fail. Bonnie finally bared her pain to her friend and Caroline's eyes were opened. She had been so wrapped up in her world, her kids, her job, her boyfriend, being "selfless" by trying to get back Damon and Enzo that she hadn't stopped to really think about what Bonnie was going through day to day. Which should have been obvious to Caroline without Bonnie having to say a single word… but Caroline, as wonderful as she is, could be so self-involved. She needed to be told. So, she was and, being Caroline, when she was told, she felt awful and from that moment on she was there for Bonnie, she was empathetic and understanding and so the best friend that Bonnie could ask for. All of that was conveyed so beautifully by the dialogue and by both actresses. Although, I must give a shout-out to Kat Graham who just knocked it out of the park with Bonnie's devastation. Even with her moments of hope, there was just an air of despair that hung heavy over her every moment. It was palpable and especially helped sell the emotion of this scene.

48.) 8.08 – "We Have History Together"What is this? Damon's the good guy?!


This is another one that is more a combination of two scenes, but it was connected by a song, so I consider it one. A gorgeous, absolutely fitting song (by The Vampire Diaries own Michael Malarkey, by the way) that captured the feel and intensity of what was happening not just for one brother, but both Salvatores. It fit well with what each were going through, but also laid bare the contrast. Damon was reaching out to someone about being good, making up for past deeds and why it should be done. Meanwhile, Stefan had lost himself once again in the dark shadow of his blood addiction. In the past, it had been the other way around with Damon the problem child, and Stefan the do-gooder. This time, however, Stefan was the "jerk," the "trouble-maker."

How the scene was written, directed and acted was a thing of beauty. Damon said he was going through an existential crisis—familiar words from one of my favorite Damon scenes ever (poor Jessica)—and that the valuable thing (i.e., Elena's locket) that he had lost made him feel better. And we saw that it did. When watching this the first time, I had thought that Damon was going to kill that someone he was speaking to—an inmate, picking up trash as part of his rehabilitation. After all, the last time that he'd had an existential crisis, he killed the person (poor, poor Jessica). His expression this go-round initially certainly appeared to indicate that he was planning on doing so again… but then he saw the valuable thing: Elena's locket. The execution of that moment, as well as the interaction with the inmate, their discussion, the contrast between Damon in the sun, and Stefan in the darkened hallway of the hospital surrounded by his victims was all so, so well done. Every moment was so perfectly played from Ian Somerhalder to that of the inmate (Devin McGee, in such a small role, did a beautiful job) and Paul Wesley as he gave into his blood lust. Kudos, finally, to Somerhalder who once again showed his directorial prowess.

49.) 8.14 – "It's Been a Hell of a Ride"Oh, Damon… so not selfish!

      814-Damon: I choose me.

My goodness I loved this scene so hard. I loved it just for itself, because the selfish Damon Salvatore made such a completely selfless choice for the two people he loved most. I also loved it because looking beneath the surface, oh my God, it's amazing when you dig deeper. In this scene, so close to the end, we got a re-introduction to the triangle that drove the show for at least half of its run, but this time it was in the very best way possible. "I choose me" is normally about being selfish for the good of yourself; it's about putting you first because your happiness matters too. In this instance when Damon told The Vampire Diaries' version of the Devil that he was choosing himself it was the very opposite. As I said at the start, it was the height of selflessness. The show subverted that usual selfish trope in the context of the situation. When Cade forced Damon to choose between Elena and Stefan, he put the triangle back into play but, ah, we were given this wonderful, beautiful twist… Damon was the one in the middle. And not only was there that brilliant twist, but the re-introduction and Damon's placement in the center was used to reveal its true heart.

Stefan was fighting for Damon to choose Elena (and Elena would have been fighting for him to choose Stefan—she wouldn't want to see him die, but more importantly she would know that Damon would never forgive himself for condemning his brother to death). Oh, but when Cade forced his hand, Damon did just as Stefan did (and Elena would have). He offered up his own soul to the Devil in place of theirs. In doing as the two he loves most did and would do, it brought the triangle to its purest form and proved ultimately that it had never been about two brothers fighting over a girl. Damon never truly fought for Elena when she was with Stefan, and Stefan never truly fought to win her back once she was with Damon. The triangle at the heart of this show has been about three people who all loved each other so much that not a one of them could imagine losing either of the other two and would sacrifice themselves first. Love in its purest form. I loved this scene; I love these three characters. I love this show.

50.) 8.16 – "I Was Feeling Epic"Yes, Bonnie Bennett, you did it!

      816-Bonnie: I did it.

There was so much to love about the series finale, but after watching it more than a few times, this was the scene that was the stand-out every time. Bonnie Bennett getting it done. Enzo's presence, his hand on her shoulder, his words, may have reminded her that she wasn't alone when her belief in herself was running low—and I will always love that from him—but it was the long lineage of Bennett witches from which Bonnie drew her strength. And it was magnificent. With Grams and then Bea and then Lucy and Ayana and so many of them by her, behind her, with her providing spiritual back-up, Bonnie did it. She told the very depths of Hell itself that she would do this, she could do this. That it could not have her, it could not have her town. It would not win.

This scene was just so powerful, so thrilling, emotional, and beautiful. It was just so freaking awesome. All the Bennett witches standing there, hand in hand, chanting the spell over and over, their voices in unison growing louder and louder. The determination on their faces, the faith radiating from their very beings, a chain of power created from their magic… a magic that came from good being wielded for the sake of good by so many that had sacrificed themselves in the name, in the duty of doing good. And here they were, their spirits joining to combat the very evil of Hell to send it back to its depths to destroy itself with its own power. And then together with all their combined might, the Bennett witches—channeled through Miss Bonnie Bennett—surged forward and literally sent Hellfire back unto itself. Amazing.

Bonnie: I'm gonna save the world. [One hour later...] I did it.
Yes, Bonnie. Yes, you did! And I am tearing up even now just reliving the scene through the memory of recall while writing this up. Such an amazing and awe-inspiring scene.

Major Unresolved Issues</a>
- Minor Unresolved Issues
- Missed Opportunities
- THE Love Story
- Seasons 01-04 Favorite Scenes and Moments
Tags: bonnie bennett, bonnie/caroline, bonnie/matt, caroline forbes, damon salvatore, damon/bonnie, damon/elena, damon/liz, damon/stefan, elena gilbert, elena/bonnie, elena/caroline, ian somerhalder, jeremy gilbert, jeremy/bonnie, katherine pierce, matt donovan, paul wesley, stefan salvatore, stefan/caroline, the vampire diaries, tv

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