Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Vampire Diaries, Season Four, Episode Twenty-Three: Graduation

The football field is all set for graduation, but instead of the expected ceremony, Kol is giving a speech to the resurrected. He says that it was their deaths which allowed this day to pass, thanks to the slaughter of innocents by the so-called protectors of Mystic Falls.  He then adds that they are going to unleash hell on earth.

Stefan is blasting Bon Jovi and Lexi is dancing when Damon enters the room.  Stefan quips that Damon should help him celebrate his 17th highschool graduation and reintroduces Damon to Lexi. When Damon snarks about Lexi being back from the dead, she moves across the room, quickly slamming Damon against a wall and calls him a buzz kill. Damon asks Stefan if he is just going to let Lexi get away with this but Stefan replies, "you reap what you sow." Lexi informs Damon that whatever time she has left on this plane will not be spent with him, before releasing him.  Damon says that if Lexi, Rick, and Jeremy, are all real and flesh like that something must have gone horribly wrong when Bonnie tired to put the veil back up and questions the fact that they are partying it up.  Stefan snarks that it is selfish of him to be relaxing with his formerly dead best friend and adds that he should be sacrificing himself for the good of others, as well as upstairs grooming his hero hair. Damon asks him if he is drunk and Stefan replies, "I don't know mom am I?"  Damon replies that this is one way to deal with things and asks Stefan if he has any idea of what went wrong.

Bonnie calls Caroline, who is handing out yearbooks to say that she has hit a snag.  Caroline replies that what has happened is not a snag but a tsunami and asks where she is. Bonnie simply says that she ran into some trouble and that she is going to have to wait for the full moon tonight in order to put the veil back up. Caroline however, is worried that they are going to have to graduate in the middle of a ghost filled expression triangle. Bonnie turns and looks at her body and at Sheila and suggests cancelling graduation. Caroline says that they can't cancel because graduation is the most important ceremony of their lives (well they ever reduce the angst on this damn show?) Caroline makes Bonnie promise to make a fun day and Sheila tells Bonnie to go and that she will make sure no one finds her body.  Bonnie says that she knows that she needs to tell everyone but she just can't because they have been through too much already.  Sheila tells Bonnie to make sure she says her goodbyes.

Elena, Alaric and Jeremy are drinking and eating in a cemetery while joking around. Alaric says that he wasn't sure he was going to see Elena smile and she tears up.  Jeremy tells her that if Caroline was right, they only have until tonight and his plan is to institute a no crying rule. Elena says that crying is good because it means that she is finally feeling something and right now she feels happy. Elena's phone rings and it's Connor.

Alexander is at Connor's old trailer with Matt and Rebekah and he comments on all of the modern weapons he has come across. Rebekah begs Alexander to let them go but he tells her that he is not holding them there, though he has managed to strap an explosive to Matt's feet.  Okay pause, how the hell did Rebekah let that happen in the first place?  Yes, I know that when we last saw her, she was surrounded by three hunters but being an original, they should have been no threat to her period. Matt instructs Rebecca to leave, saying that he will be fine but Rebecca tells Matt that she is not leaving him. Alexander then finds a bottle of werewolf venom.  Rebecca asks Alexander what he wants from them and Alexander replies that he wants to fulfill his destiny. The brotherhood of hunters was created for one reason alone.

When Damon opens the front door, he is shot by Galen Vaughn, who says that he has a message straight from Ketsia.  On the phone, Conner tells Elena that they want Silas and the cure but she replies that she doesn't know where they are and cannot help him. Connor warns Elena that her grandparents and the rest of the relatives in Mystic Falls for the graduation are in danger, unless she gives them what they want. Vaughn and Damon are now inside the house, and Damon pulls the wood bullet out of his shoulder. Damon tells Vaughn that he didn't kill him but Vaughn is not pacified because Damon left him in a well on the island, where he starved to death and more importantly, Ketsia reminded him of his supernatural destiny to kill Silas.  Stefan sneaks up on Vaughn and rips his heart out from behind.  On the phone, Elena begs Connor not to kill anyone and promises to find Silas and the cure.  When Connor hangs up the phone and turns around, Alaric is there waiting for him. Alaric tells Connor that he is responsible for the 18 year old he just threatened but Connor replies that Elena snapped his neck with her bare hands. Alaric says that he showed her how to do that.  Connor is still not impressed and tells Alaric that he must not know a damn thing about fighting, if he is trying to intimidate a dead guy as he unzips his jacket and reveals the bomb he has strapped to his body.  Alaric tells him that this is his bar and that no one is going to blow it up and drags Connor out of the Grill, just as the bomb starts to go off.

Back at the trailer, Alexander tells Rebekah to use her vampire powers to whisk Matt away and quips that she will be able to survive the blast of the six cars exploding but Matt won't. Matt instructs Rebekah to ignore Alexander and starts to talk about her plans for after graduation.  Matt says that just because he is never going to get to leave this town that this doesn't mean Rebekah won't. Rebekah looks down at the bomb and tells him that she is going to show him life as he only dreamed of it and brings up the church where she was supposed to marry Alexander. Matt agrees that it's a date and Rebekah replies that they will see it all when this is over because they are alive and are not going to be ghosts stuck in misery on the other side. This angers, Alexander so he throws a knife at Matt pushing him off balance and activating the bomb but Rebekah manages to catch the knife and straighten Matt out before the bomb can go off. I have got to say that I like the chemistry between Matt and Rebekah in this scene.

Katherine and Bonnie are making their way through the halls of the high school and Katherine says that she is there to collect on the immortality that Bonnie promised her. Bonnie says that she is not going to get it because Ketsia is the only witch who can do that spell and she was a no show. Katherine responds that Elena has been getting all of her luck and that if she doesn't get the immortality that she will get rid of Elena altogether.  Bonnie threatens Katherine saying that she can crush her skull without even blinking but Katherine calls her on her threat and tells her to take her best shot. Bonnie does not act however because humans start to walk towards them.

Elena shows up at the Salvatore's and says that there are things they need to talk about. Damon tells her that he has something for her first and hands her the cure, but Elena replies that she can't take it. Damon jokes that it might be cherry flavoured and Elena says that there is only one cure and the hunters have made it clear that they are willing to kill everyone in Mystic Falls until they get it. Damon puts the cure in her hand and tells her that he wants her to take it but Elena hands it back and says that she can't. Damon responds that this answers the question of the sire bond. Jeremy enters the room and he tells her that he loves her, no matter what she chooses.

Stefan and Lexi are still hanging out and Lexi comments that when the veil goes back up that she will die again.  Lexi adds that Stefan is missing his chance to weigh in on the great Elena Gilbert cure debate. Stefan says that Elena's choice and that Damon and Elena are there talking about how to save the world, but they have yet to discuss the real issue - the sire bond is gone, so now Elena knows exactly how she feels.  Ummm Stefan, the world potentially being destroyed is far more important than Elena's fee fees but yeah, it's The Vampire Diaries. Lexi asks Stefan what happens if Elena loves him and he admits that Elena is the love of his life and that he would go back to her in heartbeat but if that's not what she feels that this is what he needs to get his ass out the door. Suddenly, Vaughn wakes up and gets to his feet.

Damon and Elena are still arguing and he says that they don't need the cure for Silas because he is a calcified statue. Suddenly, Damon grimaces in pain and Elena orders him to take off his shirt. Elena sees the wound on his shoulder and Damon says that the bullet was laced with werewolf venom.  Elena says that they need Klaus but Damon tells her that Klaus would rather see him die and that he is a thousand miles away.  Elena tells Damon that the wound will kill him, so Jeremy brings up the cure. Elena quickly agrees that if Damon is human that the werewolf venom won't kill him. Damon snarks about Elena's desire to save mankind. He throws the cure to Vaughn and says that he is off to dig up Silas, as Elena and Stefan watch him leave stunned.

Damon takes Vaughn to the place where he supposedly dumped Silas. At the trailer, Rebekah is still holding onto Matt, who says that he is wearing the Gilbert ring and cannot be killed by anything supernatural.  He thinks that if anyone detonates the bomb that he will be fine, but Rebekah is not willing to take the chance. Matt says that there is only way to find out and Rebekah says, "the first rule of truly living, is to do the thing you're most afraid of," before kissing Matt and stepping on the bomb. Matt is shocked but Rebekah says that she cannot be killed and that Matt cannot miss graduation. Christian is shocked and Rebekah tells him that she has finally become one of the good one.  Matt takes off and Rebekah detonates the bomb.

Elena tells Stefan that they have to do something because she is worried about Damon giving the cure to the hunters.  Stefan says that Damon is stalling because he hasn't had time to bury Silas's body yet. Elena is pacified with that but brings up the fact that Damon is still going to die.  Stefan assures her that it was just one bullet and promises to go to New Orleans to beg Klaus for the cure himself. Jeremy interrupts and says that it's settled and Elena is going to her graduation and that their parents would be upset if she didn't take a picture in her cap and gown. Elena tries to beg off saying not if Jeremy can't be there but Jeremy replies that Lexy will keep him company.

Caroline and Jeremy are dressed in their cap and gown and Caroline is leaving a message on Klaus' phone about returning to Mystic Falls to save Damon's life. Caroline then asks Matt where he has been and he says that he has been dodging death with a vampire.  Finally, Matt, Stefan, Elena, Bonnie and Caroline are assembled.  The commencement ceremony begins, and in the seats, Kol says greetings to Bonnie and then points out of the people who died, so that she could raise the expression triangle.  Bonnie informs Kol that the veil is going back up tonight but Kol replies that he wants her to drop the veil completely, so that he and his friends can live.

Bonnie and Kol head to a private area, where she reminds him that he used to be adamantly against hell on earth.  Kol says that was before he was in hell. Bonnie shows Kol her body and tells him that she died last night and that she wants the same thing he wants because she doesn't want to be on the otherside with unfinished business. Bonnie admits that she wants to stay there more than anything. Kol starts to move towards Bonnie and he quickly realises that she has him trapped in some sort of force field again. Bonnie tells Kol that this will hold him until the veil goes back up.

Damon and Vaughn are still together and when Vaughn realises that he shot Damon with a bullet laced with werewolf venom, which means that he is dying, Vaughn finally clues in that he has been led on a wild goose chase. Vaughn then shoots Damon several times demanding to know where Silas is and before he can issue the death shot, Alaric tackles Vaughn and throws him hurtling into the water below.  Alaric then turns to Damon and shows him the cure.

Back at the graduation, Alaric calls Stefan to say that he wants to get out of there before Vaughn comes back but Damon won't take the cure because he wants it for Elena.  Stefan tells him to hang on because Caroline is calling Klaus one more time. Alaric replies that they are passed the point of "hail Mary phone calls," and that he is going to force feed Damon the cure.  Suddenly, everyone grabs their head in pain as the witches who died to create the expression circle confront them. The pain is when Klaus suddenly appears and  throws a cap, which actually decapitates one of the witches.  Klaus says that he can keep this up all day and the witches stand down.

Back at the Salvatores, Damon says that he is feeling much better and Elena slaps him across the face.  Elena then asks about Jeremy and learns that he went to see Bonnie, so she asks for a moment with Stefan. When they leave the room, Lexy says that this could get interesting.  Lexy then tells Alaric that the other side isn't exactly a party and Alaric admits that he has lived better. Lexy adds that there is something else out there because Silas's whole adventure is to find peace with his one true love and so she believes that once they have served their time for all of the bad things that they have done, then it's just about letting go and moving on. Alaric asks how they are supposed to do that when the people they care about cannot seem to keep their lives straight.

Stefan asks Elena what's up and Elena tells Stefan that she just wanted to thank him for sticking by her when she was her worst and believing that she was still in there. Elena says that after everything she put him through that he never gave up on her.  Stefan tells Elena that he owed him one. Elena then hands him the cure and tells Stefan that human blood is his downfall and that he got the raw end of the vampire deal. Elena tells Stefan that he deserves whatever he wants out of life and that he deserves the cure.

Caroline and Klaus are together and she asks him how he got there so fast. Klaus says that he was already on his way and that he received her graduation announcement. Klaus adds that this was very subtle and  that he assumed she wanted cash.  Caroline replies, "that or a mini fridge." Klaus says that he had considered offering her a first class ticket to join him in New Orleans but he knew what her answer would be, so he opted to give her something he knew she would accept. Klaus says that Tyler is now free to return to New Orleans because he is Caroline's first love but adds that he intends to be Caroline's last love, no matter how long it takes. Klaus then leans in and kisses Caroline on the cheek and tells her congratulations.

Elena walks into the room where Damon is sitting and he says that he wanted to apologise until he realized that he's not sorry.  Elena asks Damon if he expects her to be okay with the fact that he would rather die than be human. Damon tells her that he does not expect her to be good with it and reiterates that he is not sorry because he is selfish.  Damon says that he makes bad choices that hurt Elena and admits that he would rather die than be human and rather die than lose her, or spend a handful of years with her. He then adds that this is who he is and that there is no apology in the world that encompasses all the reasons that he is wrong for her.  Elena says that she is not sorry that she met Damon and that knowing him made her question everything, or that in death, Damon was the one who made her feel the most alive.  Elena tells him that he has been a terrible person but she is not sorry that she is in love with him. Elena again tells Damon that she loves him and the two kiss. In the other room, Lexy approaches Stefan and asks, "now who is eavesdropping?"

Stefan is packing Silas into the back of a truck and when Damon approaches, Stefan asks if the quarry will be deep enough to bury Silas.  Damon says that he doesn't think that anyone will stumble over him there.  Damon asks if he needs help but Stefan says that he has Lexy coming with him. When Damon moves to walk away, Stefan says that he is not happy about Elena but that he is happy for him.  Damon replies, "thanks brother," and walks away.

Jeremy heads to see Bonnie, who tells him that she needs to close the veil because of the hybrids and hunters.  Jeremy replies that he is ready to go but that he wanted to be with her when it happened. Bonnie asks about Elena but Jeremy says that he cannot be with her when it happens because he said no tears and that he left Elena a letter, which she will find when all of this is over.  Bonnie starts to lift the veil as back at the Salavatore house, Damon and Alaric are talking.  Damon tells Alaric that he got the girl and that with him looking over her shoulder that he won't mess it up. When Damon looks up, Alaric is gone.  Stefan and Lexy are driving and she tells him that he has graduated for the millionth time and that it is time he starts living his life. Stefan asks what if Elena was the one and Lexy tells him that she was and that Elena will always be an epic love.  Lexy adds that contrary to popular belief, there are actually multiple one's, especially if you're a vampire but points out that the only way to find another, is to let go and move on. Stefan says that he has never been to Portland and when he turns, he finds that Lexy has disappeared.

Elena goes to find Bonnie and Jeremy and is immediately attacked by Kol but before he can finish her off Kol disappears. Katherine shows up and says happy graduation cupcake and attacks Elena.   Bonnie tells Jeremy that the veil is almost closed.  Jeremy replies that there were a million things he wanted to say to her but nothing feels quite right.  Bonnie kisses him and tells him not to say anything.  Jeremy grabs his chest and asks whats happening.  Bonnie tells him that she did a spell to save him and that she closed the veil and he is still there. Jeremy is stunned to discover that he is alive and he rushes to Bonnie.  Jeremy realises that he can't feel Bonnie's hand and she tells him that she has her grandmother and that because he can see ghosts that they can talk whenever they want.  Bonnie asks Jeremy to tell Elena and Caroline that she is spending the summer with her mother. Jeremy replies that they need to know but Bonnie says that for the first time in forever, her friends are okay and that she doesn't want to take that from them.  Bonnie then promises Jeremy that she is going to be okay, before joining hands with Sheila and walking away. Of course, Bonnie is selfless to the bloody end.

Rebekah goes to see Matt to check up on him. Matt says that he would invite her in but he promised Tyler that the house would be a no vampire zone. Rebekah tells him that she knows that they were under duress today and that whatever plans they were making, she understands if he doesn't want to keep them. Matt tells Rebekah that a relationship will not work because he needs to keep his love life a no vampire zone as well. Rebekah says of course and moves to leave but Matt adds that whatever happens on the road stays on the road and that she cannot turn him into a vampire. Matt says that he has never left Mystic Falls and since she almost killed him this year that it's Rebekah's responsibility to show him how.

Katherine is kicking the shit out of Elena and she tells her that she never had a graduation, a prom or a life but Elena did.  Can we please stop having vampires who are hundreds of years old going on about prom?  Katherine adds that Elena has everything because she stole it from her. Elena reminds Katherine that she killed Jeremy.   Katherine then breaks off a broom handle saying that she has nothing and is going to change that and then puts the boomhandle through Elena's throat.  Elena flashes back to her conversation with Stefan. Stefan says that everything that he did to get the cure was for her and that the choice of whether Elena wanted to be a vampire or not, would always be hers.  As Katherine goes to stake Elena, Elena shoves the cure in her mouth and Katherine collapses.

Stefan is about to drop Silas's body but he appears as Elena and tells him not to bother because he is not there.  Stefan is shocked and brings up the spell and Silas replies that the funny thing about spells is that they are bound by nature. Silas says that nature demands balance and that balance creates a loophole.  Silas adds that nature was bound by a witch and when the witch died, the spell broke.  Stefan says that Bonnie is not dead and Silas tells him that he created the immortality spell two thousand years ago and that he can never die, so nature created a shadow self of him that could die - a doppelganger.  Stefan asks if this is finally his real face and Silas says not exactly and shifts into Stefan.  Silas says, "hello my shadow self."  Silas then puts his hand into Stefan's chest and asks if he has any idea what it's like to starve for two thousand years.  Silas thrusts Stefan into the crate that Stefan had created for Silas and pushes Stefan into the quarry, where he is quickly surrounded by water.

Okay folks, that was the season finale of The Vampire Diaries. As always this season was overloaded with ridiculous angst and even though they have all finally graduated from highschool, I doubt that this is going to bring an end to the angst.  At the very least we can stop having ancient vampires whining about prom, and graduation because they have finally passed that hump.  I will say the comments about how many times Stefan has graduated high school reminded me of Twilight but I think that the reference was intentional.  It felt like they were mocking the ridiculousness of vampires interacting with vapid teenagers.

I don't know about you, but I am really upset with how they have handled Bonnie's death.  Once again, Bonnie has sacrificed herself for the great Elena and now that she is dead, she is of course more concerned about how her friends will take it.  Elena tried to kill her on multiple occasions and has never really been there for her.  I am absolutely desperate for them to find a way to bring Bonnie back because she is the only reoccurring visible character of colour (yes, I know that Tyler is Latino but his character is meant to be seen as White)  There is nothing empowering about Bonnie's death because it only affirms the servant role that she has been placed into for the last four seasons.

The Salvatore Elena love triangle took another twist with Elena declaring her love for Damon.  It made me sick to listen to her justify her love of Damon.  To be clear, Damon like his brother Stefan is a mass murderer and even more importantly, Damon tried to kill Jeremy and the only reason he survived is because Jeremy happened to be wearing the Gilbert ring.  Elena knows this and yet is more than willing to cast that all aside.  It makes absolutely zero sense and quite frankly, I am tired of these romances being framed as a good thing. 

The Rebekah and Matt romance is similarly ridiculous though Zach Roerig and Claire Holt actually have pretty good chemistry together. Clearly this is the replacement for the Caroline/Klaus romance because Joseph Morgan has left The Vampire Diaries to star in the spinoff The Originals. If nothing else it will give these two irrelevant characters something to do and hopefully stop Rebekah's constant annoying immaturity.

The big cliffhangers are that Katherine is now human and that Stefan is Silas's doppelganger. Katherine as human doesn't really appeal to me but I am glad that at least in this fight with Elena, they stayed true to the rules of their world and had Katherine holding onto the upper hand for the most part.  I do think that making Katherine more human will just give her more of a desire to kill Elena which does not excite me because it means that we will see more of the whole, we must save Elena storyline.  I am disappointed that they have decided to turn Stefan into a doppelganger rather than hiring an actor to play Silas.  Let's be clear, Paul Wesley is a very handsome man but he is not a talented actor.  I am not convinced that he has it in him to play bad. 

Like every other season of The Vampire Diaries, season four was filled with Elena directed angst.  I hope that they mature these characters and give them something else to do than to spend practically every waking minute trying to save Elena or make her happy. Quite honestly, the writers have given us no reason to believe that Elena is worth even half the effort that goes into the continual focus on her.  This season finale and in particular the graduation from high school offers the writers a chance to make some significant changes in the world they have created and I hope they jump on the opportunity.