We're passing the time until The Vampire Diaries returns by re-watching Season 1 from the beginning. This edition of "Rewind" covers Episodes 13-16; click here to read Part 1(Episodes 1-4), here to read Part 2 (Episodes 5-8) and here to read Part 3 (Episodes 9-12).
Metaphorically speaking, The Vampire Diaries is like a low-self-esteem-having witch who constantly traps us in a styrofoam tomb marked HIATUS. I mean, sure, I've been trapped in tons of LITERAL tombs, but that has mostly to do with my night job as an archaeology hero/hunk (I steal all of the idols, basically). What I'm trying to say is, aren't these hiatuses THE WORST? I'm sure the actors and crew were like, yay, let's go on vacation for six weeks happyface emoticon! MEANWHILE me and you, the people who work so hard every day just so that we can come home and watch The Vampire Diaries with our children, our moms and our moms' boyfriends, end up coming home to nothing but reruns week after week! It's enough to really shake your head in disappointment, all sadface emoticon.
I know I am preaching to the choir here, but sometimes it's like you just want to shout at a choir, you know? Shouting at choirs is the best. Speaking of which, it seems like decades ago, but I once had a nice chat with a gang of Vampire Diaries fans and we were trying to decide whether Season 2 was better than Season 1. Obviously I am not the biggest expert on this show and haven't even finished season 1, but I still think season 2 is better in general. Right now it's a really confident show, and the characters have become so much deeper and well-rounded since season 1. That being said, I TOTALLY GET why people miss season 1 so much. The season 1 of ANY show is always steeped in the joy of discovery: new characters, new back stories, and the future's so bright you have to wear an enchanted ring. But especially with this show: season 1 is hecka fun (pardon my French).
Anyway! What follows is NOT a full recap of episodes 13-16, but more a celebration of the important milestones (or random weirdness) these episodes had to offer that helped make season 2 what it is today.
Season 1, Episode 13
The beginning of episode 13 made me chuckle when a familiar Vampire Diaries trope was revisited. Apparently Damon learned his old lying-in-the-road, preying-on-good-samaritans trick from Katherine! Figures. And apparently he had to BEG her to turn him? Also figures.
There was also a rare confirmation that Damon and Elena are having sex. I mean, I know this wasn't a mystery, but sometimes the show is real coy about it right? Anyway, this scene was kinda creepy because Damon was just sitting on the bed watching them spoon? Gross!
Also, not to be crass (I am a GENTLEMAN), but it sort of looked like Stefan had a boner here:
At first I was dreading having to sit through yet another flashback episode, but I have to say, this episode intercut the flashbacks with the present-day storyline in a really clever way. Cross-cut dialogue, parallel imagery. Clever stuff! So there you go. I enjoyed flashbacks for once. Credit where credit's due. Also, did I mention I LOVE Anna's mom? I love Anna's mom, and not just because she used to make Anna dress like this:
And of course this episode had Sean Faris.
You know, just doing what Sean Faris does best. How heartbreaking was the subplot where he pretended to like Bonnie and she got her hopes up like crazy because he's Sean Faris but it turned out he was just using her to carry out Anna's plans? I kinda felt bad for Bonnie, you guys. How often does THAT happen?
By far the BIGGEST revelation contained in this episode was that Stefan and Damon's dad is DEXTER'S DAD ALSO!! Gauzy flashbacks and everything! Man, Harry, all your kids are CRAZY.
At one point Elena and Stefan dug up his father's grave to find a dead witch's spell book? You know, typical teen stuff. We've all been there.
In this episode we got a ton of explanation about the tomb and how Stefan and Damon's father planned the big townwide vampire roundup. In one scene Harry even laced Stefan's drink with vervain to protect him from Katherine and Stefan got totally mad at Harry for it. I am on Team Harry though, that's just being a good father!
Also, Elena got kidnapped at the end of the episode. Obviously.
Season 1, Episode 14
We opened in the cheap hotel where Anna and Sean Faris were probably shirtless hugging a ton off camera but ALSO where Sean Faris took Elena when he abducted her. It was genuinely spooky when Elena went into the bathroom and found Bonnie unconscious in the bathtub. I don't mean to imply that I have friends, but that is probably the LAST place I'd want to find them.
LUCKILY Jasmine Guy clued in Stefan on where they were, and after a very thrilling rescue from the motel room (Sean Faris ended up being a terrible vampire), the rest of the episode was just build-up to the OPENING OF THE TOMB.
So basically Grams decided to "help" open the tomb so that Damon could finally get Katherine and Anna could find her mom, but it ended up being just a big trick-- Grams really just wanted to trap ALL the vampires in there. I thought that was awesome! Jasmine Guy: simply the best.
Anyway, things didn't necessarily go according to plan-- Stefan got trapped in there when Anna tried to feed Elena to her mummy (play on words). Bonnie threw a hissy fit, so, in a very tense scene, it took, like, ALL of Grams' powers to finally lift the curse and allow our vampire friends out of the tomb.
Meanwhile, in the single least believable scene ever to air on television--and this is a show about supernatural monsters, mind you-- Jeremy BINGed "vampires." Like, what? I can only suspend my disbelief so much, Vampire Diaries. Nobody has ever ever BINGed anything and that is the truth. Nice try.
The bad news for Damon was that Katherine wasn't in the tomb, and not only that, but she'd always known where he was and didn't care. Ouch.
And then Grams died. GRAMS DIED. I was so mad, I was like, "Bonnie, YOU DID THIS." Ugh! Oh man, it was awful. So sad. Goodbye, Jasmine Guy. Farewell forever (?).
Oh, and remember that wide open tomb? Yeah tons of vampires spilled out of it. Including this guy:
But he was not like ANY vampire I'd ever seen before!
Season 1, Episode 15
The next episode opened during what SEEMED like the next day because that "odd-looking" vampire was wandering around in the woods still, except Grams' funeral had already happened? Haha, fair enough Vampire Diaries. You and your ridiculous timeline need to GET A ROOM already.
In this episode the Isobel stuff really came into full-swing. It started with YET ANOTHER scene where someone uses Bing. QUIT IT. Anyway, Jenna figured out that Elena's biological mom is probably also Alaric's dead ex-wife. These are just normal things that people figure out. No biggie.
Damon was trying to ease his pain by biting a bunch of floozies. This very same thing is sort of happening in season 2! Oh, Damon. Once a floozy-biting rogue, always a floozy-biting rogue.
Two more momentous things about this episode: Matt and Caroline's on-camera shirtless hug PLUS Melinda Clarke. Yay Melinda Clarke! She is the best. But Matt's mom is kind of sucky, it turns out. Just a no-good tramp who leaves for months at a time and then walks in on her son giving a girl a shirtless hug.
It was hilarious seeing Jenna and Alaric share their first kiss only to then have Jenna whip out her phone and confront him about his dead wife. VERY smooth. Classic Jenna.
Also, the new vampire sort of wandered around town where he ran into OTHER escaped vampires. And they ALL have mystical rings I guess? Awesome. Emily must have been busy back in the day.
This episode really started laying on the Damon + Elena stuff pretty thick. We get it, he was in love with her doppelganger and now he is sad and lonely and can't button his own shirts. Anyway, this was a VERY crucial scene where she helped him button his shirt.
Matt's mom was super mean to Caroline. At first I felt bad for Caroline but then I remembered that Caroline doesn't become awesome until season 2. Sure, she's sort of tragic right now, but still mostly just whiny/jealous of Elena and whatnot.
Alaric died (Damon was back in jerk mode again). But then he came alive because of his magical ring.
Oh, Isobel! She'd given Alaric the immortality ring because she was a real nerd for that kind of stuff. She seemed decent enough in the flashbacks, but in the present-day Isobel was up to no good, sending some goon to harass Elena and murder some folks. I mean, we KNEW Damon turned her from the get-go, so it was sort of anti-climactic to learn she was alive, but still. Makes things awkward for Elena, I guess.
Season 1, Episode 16
I loved that this episode began with Anna hanging out with the 19th century vampires and teaching them how to watch TV and send text messages. I always love when this show explores how annoying it can be to be a vampire.
Speaking of annoying! Haha Jeremy. After noticing Anna's vampire-face the night before, he decided to grow his hair all long and go into vampire chat rooms. First off, great screenname, Vampjer. Also, how sassy is Bloodybecky? SO SASSY.
I LOVED Pearl's "conversation" with Damon. Firstly because when he entered she was only talking to him with her back turned (I love when TV characters do that) but also THIS happened:
But seriously, Jeremy was looking ridiculous in this episode.
In an effort to be regular teens again, Stefan and Elena went on a double date with Caroline and Matt, but Caroline got all butt-hurt whenever Matt would bring up the fact that he and Elena used to be soul mates? Also Damon started hooking up with Matt's mom which was great. Nowhere near as great as when Melinda Clarke hooked up with Mischa Barton's ex-boyfriend on The OC (to "Night Moves"!), but I'll take what I can get.
Matt REALLY liked Stefan's car. It made me laugh how Stefan claimed it didn't run but it was still waxed and detailed to perfection? Whatever, weirdo.
Also, I forgot to bring this up, but Elena's red mini Cooper? Am I crazy or does that disappear at some point? I really can't remember ever seeing it again. It's a mystery! I may never know.
Aaand then we leave off with the culmination of the Jeremy-Anna flirtation. Taking a break from being a dunce, Jeremy had deduced that Anna was a vampire and decided to out her. In addition, Anna had started to realize that after having used Jeremy (while secretly shirtless hugging Sean Faris), she maybe-kinda-sorta might like him. Like him like him. I really dug this gender-reversed Twilight subplot. Jeremy did the thing I hate, which is when people cut their PALMS in order to shed blood, but whatever, Anna wasn't mad! So I guess he wanted to be a vampire? Ugh, Jeremy. Hopefully SOMEONE wipes his brain again soon.
All in all, four very solid episodes! I can definitely see why people love season 1, but I personally still prefer the VampireCaroline-Werewolves-Damon-Rose-Klaus stuff in season 2. WHICH, hey! Guess what? The hiatus is almost over! New episode next Thursday! Holy jeez, life is awesome sometimes.
See you next week!
-Didn't you think Anna's mom was kind of awesome?
-Do you miss Jeremy's Jennifer Aniston haircut?
-Are BOTH of Caroline's parents actually gay, or is Matt's mom just hilarious for saying that?
-How often do you BING "vampires"?