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After watching this last episode I've come to the conclusion Damon is unredeemable... I'm sure I will get a bunch of hate for saying that, but please hear/read my thoughts on this.

Also Spoilers(Duh).

I've been rooting for Damon since day one, and, for the most part, I've been able to overlook his past because Stefan was able to turn himself around even after being basically a serial killer. Stefan is trying to improve, and he is succeeding. Stefan Tries to help people, vamps, and Humans alike when they need him. I'm not saying he's perfect, but atleast he tries to bring some good to people. Damon on the other hand continues to do nothing to make amends for the unhappiness he's brought to people. This season we've learned a lot about Damon's past as one of the Augustine vampires, and we learned he had a friend Enzo.They we're both captured, and tortured as an experiment. They came up with the plan to escape, so Enzo gave Damon his blood rations, which left Enzo weakened for the escape. It was all up to Damon, and surprise Damon walks away while Enzo is left to burn. Did Damon even really try that hard to get him out? Did he look for the key at all? After all that Damon is free, and what does he decide to do? Carry out a revenge legacy by killing his captor's family, but not all at once he leaves one(ORPHAN!) alive so that child can grow up and have children of his own so that Damon can keep the cycle of revenge murders rolling. Granted he has turned off his emotions at this point, and I did forgive Stefan, sort of, for the things he did when his was off. Now Fast forward, it's present day, and Damon and Elena are an item. At this point Damon has turned his emotions back on, so he should be able to tell the difference between right and wrong, if he had a conscience... We find out that even after his emotions are back he's still been carrying out these revenge murders. How long was he going to do this, Killing entire families except one forever? He has emotions now! Since Damon and Elena have been dating he's kept that monster side of himself hidden pretty well because he knows there's only so far he can go before she left him, and never spoke to him again. I have no doubt Damon loves Elena, but when we find out he's still torturing that family even after they're together it's like he's making her an accomplice to it. Elena was caught so off gaurd when she learned he was still doing these things, it's like when they arrest a serial killer and the family/friends are in total shock of it. The fact he hid it from her says it all, he knows it's wrong, but he likes it. Elena and Damon break up, and insanely enough Elena is willing to overlook all of it but Damon is the one to end things. Here we are, caught up to the last episode. Damon seems to keep his crap together, and not commit any geno,patri,matri,fami-cides durring most of the show. Why? Because he's confident he'll get Elena back, and it would be hard to explain all the deaths to her if he did. We Were On A Break! Once it's clear however that Elena(Katherine) won't be going back for seconds Damon's true nature comes back. The final scene of this episode has Damon killing the the guy he saved a few hours before, and killing off an entire family lineage with a smile. It's clear Damon hasn't changed at all, he hasn't learned anything, and he has no plans to improve himself at all. He's only willing to pretend to be a semi-decent being while he's getting what he wants(Elena). Well, Damon is Back Guys...

This was originaly going to be a comment on the photo recap of last episode, but after finishing it I realized it would probably be a better post. Also This is Just MY Opinion, and you may have a different one. I'd like to hear your thoughts (Pros/Cons) about Damon also, so please reply with your thoughts.

Afterthoughts:
-- After seeing what happened to Enzo could you ever trust Damon in a similar situation?

-- If you found out your Boyfriend/Girlfriend killed some people while you were dating could you look past it?

-- Can you justify killing an entire family line because one tortured you?
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Not that anyone cares about my 2 cents. I am a new watcher and only recently caught this show, thank you Netflix.
I am just finishing season 5 now and I find I like Damon for Elena more than Stefan. Only because I think real love - seriously REAL LOVE - is kind of an opposites attract kind of balance thing. You see it on many a show, read it in a book and for some, have it in real life.
This show (TVD) is always telling us with magic there is a balance. Well, in life and love there is a balance also. Elena makes Damon better and she loves him for him. I think putting her character back with Stefan would be stupid and back peddling. Julie Plec also said she writes the show as a relationship of the two brothers. Elena's character is just a bonus storyline for the doppleganger kick. But hey, just my opinion.
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They ruined him. Trying to keep his edge and this is just a U turn. Big mistake and doesn't make sense
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It's funny, I was thinking about this the other day when internally debating whether or not Katherine was redeemable. I came to the conclusion that, basically, she's neither much better or worse than the rest of the TVD roster.

Both Stefan and Damon have repeatedly gone on massacre binges for the fun of it whilst Katherine has been shown to mostly only kill as part of a self-preservation survivalist scheme, but occasionally a single person here or there for food too. To her, it seems that being a vampire means living, while to the Salvatore brothers being a vampire only means bringing death. So when they're in a bad mood they go and give into what they think is the inherent nature of their existence.

Not that that gets Kat off on all her crimes. I'm just saying, in the grand scheme of things, this whole crew is pretty villainous. Even Elena, who knowingly killed an entire line of unknown vampires through an Original and who went and murdered some more when she couldn't handle Jeremy's death. The only so-called nobility that she has in her corner is the same one Elijah has - that whatever evil she does is backed by a motivation of protecting her own loved ones or acting out of pain because her loved ones were hurt. So perhaps better motivation, but just as nasty an end result.

(Not to mention Jeremy, who was perfectly happy with his calling as a vicious, unrelenting killer.)

So... Is Damon nonredeemable? To me, the question is more "Is he any less redeemable than the other characters?" Or maybe, "Is it time to start accepting the fact that everyone's pretty dark, violent, and self-serving but also has a good side too?" I think I'm just now realizing how much TVD truly is a story of vampires, hunters, witches, and werewolves - and that all of those things kill and are separate from humans and go through an entirely different journey, with different choices, than humans. I think I'm just going to enjoy these characters for who and what they are and stop trying to judge them on a human scale. Otherwise there's no one to root for. No one.
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You're spot on with your last sentence. For me, I think Bonnie, Jeremy and Matt are mostly innocent, but even Bonnie surprised me by killing Kai in the last episode without even flinching. So he's a serial killer. STILL, murdering a human being shouldn't be that easy. Jeremy was forced into a killing rampage by Klaus, and eventually he couldn't control his hunter instincts, but yes killing an entire line of vampires was just stupid. It pisses me off that Elena was all "If it makes me a bad person to want Tyler, Caroline, Stefan, Damon, etc. alive (by not killing Klaus), then fine I'll be the bad guy." Uhm, you selfish bitch, what about all the other potentially semi-good vamps/hybrids that were bred from Kol?

Anyway, and Matt... Idr him doing anything bad. And Ric isn't bad either. So I could root for them (and Bonnie because she was always resentful towards Damon for his murders and Jeremy), but just barely. There are no heroes on this show. Just a group of vampires, humans, hunters, etc. who only protect themselves and their loved ones. Angel from Buffy sought atonement for his sins by helping as many people as he could, knowing in his heart that he could never really be atoned. These people only help their families, while giving little thought to anyone else.

Unfortunately, I can't say the same thing you said; enjoy these characters for what they are. Partly because I get the feeling we're supposed to see them (Elena anyway) a certain way... As though they can actually be compared to humans. That's the impression I get anyway.

My trick; I shout at the screen when the main chars act selfishly/evilly, ignore the rest and try to focus on the good in them (only because it's a tv show I've watched for years).
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PS: Haha, I know you wrote this like 9 months ago... Just had to add my thoughts. If only for myself.
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They have spent seasons developing him as a character only to tear him apart in this last episode! The most popular character on the show and they want to make him unredeemable so they can put Stelena back together!?!? Great Idea Julie Plec! Great idea!
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Have you noticed how in most TV shows there is a big bad evil who is totally unredeemable and mysterious. After some time on the show, we get to know them and they kinda lose their mystery together with their unredeemable evilness. Somehow, they acquire (or reveal?) their human side and are not that scary any longer. What happens then? We get a new big bad evil that is mysterious and unredeemable! So the cycle starts all over again. This is exactly what happened to Damon, Klaus and every other villain on this or any other show.

What happens to those "outdated" villains? They either turn to the good side or are defeated, lost, dead, etc. Sometimes they even sacrifice themselves for the sake of the heroes of the show thus redeeming themselves (kinda).

Damon is way too important to the show (and loved by the audience) to die so he just had to reveal his human side and become good. However, who needs a show where everyone is good? Thus Damon is used to mix things up a little because in this day and age pure good and pure evil are so outdated. He is kept close to his evilness so that whenever needed, the cycle can start again – he can become evil and the good guys had something to work on.

So Damon is always gonna be a little evil, let’s face it – this is a much better alternative than having him become Stephan-like good guy. Damon doesn’t need to be redeemed. And I’m happy about it.
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You wannna know how I want this story to end? Clearly, Enzo is a bad influence on Damon and brings out the worst in him. Elena brings out the best in him sure, but she is a love interest not a friend. So to counter the bad Damon Enzo dynamic, who has to come back? That's right ladies and gentlemen, we finally have the perfect excuse to bring Alaric Saltzman back from the dead!!

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I think Damon is a psychopath. I don't think he was always a psychopath, we don't know how brutal he was before Augustine, but the glimpses we have seen of him pre-augustine, he really wasn't that bad. The five years of torture really did drive him insane. So I guess it depends on whether or not you feel serial killers are redeemable. Clearly, they do what they do because they are insane, so is it there fault? I think both Klaus and Damon are forces of nature like Godzilla, they are destructive beings, and you just have to hope that they like you or need you to accomplish a goal so they don't kill you.
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I think Damon tried to be good for the wrong reasons, he did it for Elena and not for himself, because he thought it was right. He needs to understand that, but I guess he's no teen-ager, can he really change?

Also, I would think that to carry on a revenge like that, having your emotions is more than necessary, otherwise, why would he have cared?
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Preeeeeety sure you mean "irredeemable", as in beyond redemption. smh
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I'm guessing in the realm of: Is he or isn't he? I'm leaning towards: too much faulty logic to justifiy any answer (Good try though, I'll give them that)
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I can't answer those questions because I'm a human, not a vampire on a tv show. I'm saying that with sincerity, not snark.

Some have mentioned Spike and I think that's an interesting discussion point. On Buffy, there was consistently a moral standard that applies to our real, human world. Buffy, the protagonist, was a human. Most of the cast was human (even if they also possessed supernatural properties). Those were the standards they operated by, and it was pretty clear cut in terms of good vs. evil. Although they explored Buffy's dark side, it really wasn't much of a dark side, was it? Spike's redemption arc just further exemplified that you can't really be on the line between good and evil. We saw him trying to better himself, first unwillingly due to his chip, then because of his feelings for Buffy. But ultimately, it wasn't good enough. He was only truly redeemed in the eyes of Buffy and therefore the viewers when he got his soul back.

The Vampire Diaries has a very different perspective. By Season 4, our protagonist became a vampire. Even before that, there was a questionable moral standard. The line between good and evil is blurry at best, especially with the introduction of the Originals. That introduced a family element that made those lines hard to define - like the killing of Kol, for instance. Typically the "bad guys" are not a family unit. All of the Originals displayed human emotions, a family dynamic - things not common in your typical "bad guy". The show is really more about goals and perspective, than good vs. evil. Not to mention that the majority of the cast currently isn't human, and most have killed other humans.

With that in mind, I actually hope they don't pull a true redemption arc with Damon. I don't think it would be true to the show. I think it's important to understand that they are literal monsters, and their actions are motivated by whatever their current goals are - like keeping the people that THEY view as important safe (back to the example of killing Kol to save Jeremy/Damon). It is not as simple as good vs. evil, and for that reason, I see no reason to desire a redemption arc. I would rather just see overall character development.

I also think they've been very clear that Damon is not Stefan - he isn't looking to be redeemed or to become the hero. That isn't who he is. And in the case of Elena, I believe she will either love him as he is, or not.
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I'd say Spike was clearly redeemable because he was a hopeless romatic whose poetry was misunderstood.

Ironically enough, his redemption didn't come with a love story, his death nor his attachment to Dawn, Buffy's mom nor Drusilla.

He was redeemed to me the moment he did stand up in front of a crowd and spent his last day on earth reciting poetry to an audience that finally got it.
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More like, the TVD NEEDS him to be redeemable as he is one of the big attractions of the show as the resident bad boy (we missya Klaus!).
Whether Damon is redeemed or not in the end, not sure, perhaps they will kill him off in some heroic final redemption moment a-la-Spike?
IMO, aA persistently evil Damon (or Stefan for that matter) would be too much of a turnoff for viewers so I think TVD will go back and forth with this tango until the show reaches a conclusion some time in the future...
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I'm sure that when the show is near the end the writers will come up with something stupid so that he can become "good". Just like Spike on Buffy.
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I don't question the logic behind a good redemption arc; Spike from Buffy, The Governor from The Walking Dead, Jaime Lannister from Game of Thrones, a good redemption arc could make any great story even greater.

Problem is when it relies on faulty logic like the-most-incompetent-FBI-unit-ever from The Following, the doble crossed star-crossed lovers from OUaT in Wonderland, or the sole survivor of Damon's slaughters being able - or willing - to have children over an over.
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Questions:

1. Could I ever trust Damon in a similar situation? Absolutely not.
2. Could I get past a boyfriend murdering people? Nooooooo, not in a million years, and that is not a real-world question. TVD operates in a very different universe.
3. Could I justify killing an entire family line because of being tortured by one family member? No, that it ridiculous. All the others were innocent. Most of them not even born when Damon was tortured.

Damon can't be redeemed. He does not want to be redeemed. He's said it himself many times. He can't do it for Elena. It's like asking an addict to quit their drug of choice for another person. That never works. They have to do it for themselves.

Damon's most important redeeming quality, IMO (and not that it means he's a good person) is the fact that he will do ANYTHING to keep Stefan alive, as Stefan would do for him.
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The show itself gets unredeemable... Any plot rushed to be closed, no character development, like nothing happened to the characters since this season's premiere... And this repetitiveness... Dah...
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Broken but no unredeemable, I think in Damon's case the Augustine thing really damaged him and had a big influence on his current path Damon has always had darkness inside and has been driven by that for a very long time it's easier to give into that than fight it especially when you lose your "anchor" which is what Elena is to him she keeps him from completely being a D*^% and killing any thing in site. From watching this series from the beginning Stefan has always had a strong unit of people who are willing to fight for his humanity and keep him on the up n up where Damon has always been meet with hostility and doesn't have that unit of friends to help since Alaric is gone :(
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I'm wondering about that myself and I've been an avid fan of the Damon-redemption line.

I think it's interesting to parallel Stephan and Damon's relationship with Elijah and Klaus's. Why is it that I insist on redemption for Damon, but don't see it for Klaus?

I really like UnaBlack's idea that killing will no longer hold real pleasure for Damon. It would make his redemption more organic, rather than arising from Elena as an external stimulus toward the good.
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It's an interesting question. I think Damon's ability, or lack thereof, to be redeemed needs to be looked at in terms of the shows set up of morality, not real life. I would never look past murder, whether I was with someone or not, it is in no way acceptable. However on TVD it is ok. Even our nicest characters have murdered, or at least plotted and assisted in it. it seems that in the TVD universe murder is ok as long as you feel a little bad about it afterwards, or, of course, killed them accidentally.
I think the Salvatore brothers are like two opposites, journeying to a more middle ground. Stefan has developed from a self flagellating uptight killjoy with all the accompanying consequences to someone who is coming to terms with his darker side, allowing him to enjoying his life more. Elena started that journey for him, but he needs to realize that on his own too. Damon is the other extreme, also traumatized by what happened to him, he went the other way and his dark side took over, Elena brought out more kindness in him, and him letting other people know that side of him, but he too needs to get there by himself.
I think the rest of this season will see him acting badly, but perhaps more dissatisfied with that behavior. If he stops killing for pleasure because it no longer pleases him, in my mind would be better redemption than doing it for Elena.
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i've spoke a little about the weird moral values of the people on TVD before. the truth is they really don't have one. damon kills people all the times, even has a little of the inner groups blood on his hands, yet he is part of their group. katherine is hatted immensely by everyone. elana when she cut off her emotions did a whole bunch of horrible things, and they just brushed over it. stefan was a serial killer that ripped people heads off. elana dates the brother of the guy she was in love with and was still willing to stay with him after finding out he killed a whole line of people because of what their ancestors did. they simply have no real moral values, matt is the one that seems to have any values what so ever, tyler is a close second.
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>>If he stops killing for pleasure because it no longer pleases him, in my mind would be better redemption than doing it for Elena.<<


Absolutely! That would be true redemption. But I do not think he will stop killing, I think it *does* please him and that he will not be redeemed.

Damon killed, on occasion, for basically no reason other than convenience. Remember the woman who owned the house where the tomb vampires were staying? And the pianist in I think a flashback episode with Sage? There was no reason at all to kill either of them. I didn't see he got any pleasure in it, or any displeasure. It meant no more to him than killing a fly means to us.
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Love this.
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Very eloquently put, and a really interesting take. Thank you.
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