Previously on The Vampire Diaries...
- Connor turned the Mystic Grill into the OK Corral.
- Stefan played everyone dirty for a good cause.
- Elena climbed on Damon like he was a stallion.
- Matt moonlighted as MacGuyver.
- April's noggin is made of swiss cheese.
- Vampire Elena finally acting like the bad-ass vamp she's supposed to be.
- Caroline showed her claws to Tyler and Hayley.
- Klaus dug for buried treasure.
- Jeremy is the new hunter in town.
Last week, Elena killed Connor. What she (and everyone who isn't Klaus) didn't realize was that doing so would make her go insane. The gang spent the entire episode trying to save Elena, of course, and I'm not sure everyone is happy with the results.
In order to save Elena, Jeremy had to behead one of Tyler's friends, thus activating his hunter's mark. I love that Steven R. McQueen finally has something decent to play on the show, and can't wait to see both him and Kat Graham take on larger roles this season in the central storyline. What stood out the most about Jeremy's arc wasn't the funny line about being willing to stake Damon if handed a stake, but Caroline's reaction to Chris' death.
For the longest time I've noticed how the Scoobies don't seem all that affected by the deaths of non-Scoobies. Caroline felt Chris' death was justified because it allowed Jeremy to save Elena from madness. What was sad about this thought was how Caroline said it to Tyler. Someone who was actually mourning the death of his friend. Not saintly Elena, but Chris the hybrid. I loved how the writers had Tyler point this fact out to Caroline in the "He's not a friend."/"He's my friend." exchange between the couple. Not everything revolves around Elena. At least it shouldn't.
Tyler wasn't just unhappy about the death of his friend, but also unhappy at the prospect of his girlfriend dating Klaus. Chris was Klaus' hybrid, and he voluntarily sacrificed him in exchange for 2 things: potential blood bag Elena, and brand new hunter Jeremy. I understand Caroline's thinking. She and Tyler are pretending to be broken up, so this date will just add to their fabrication. However, from Tyler's standpoint he's losing yet another thing to Klaus.
Bonnie has seemed pretty starstruck where professor Shane is concerned, but this week her eyebrows seemed a little raised. Now that she's had unsupervised access to Shane's files, she's noticed this guy is way too informed about the supernatural. When he gave his little speech about Silas and the Ultimate Power, I know I'm not the only one thinking that Shane=Silas, and he's the Big Evil. Something tells me the map doesn't lead to a cure, but is really a road map for Silas to regain his powers. I hope I've read Bonnie right, cause homegirl better watch out! If I didn't, the Magnificent Matt Donovan sure as hell did.
The biggest change came with the dreaded triangle. Stefan did his best to save Elena from herself, but with them on the outs he was unsuccessful. Of course she was hallucinating tons, but I believe there was some transference going on. In the end, Stefan had Damon go after her, which did indeed end up saving Elena's life.
What I loved about this storyline was how mature everyone was. Finally! Stefan didn't sit around beating himself for past wrongs, or crying because his girl isn't really his girl anymore. He's noticed Elena and Damon growing closer. He's noticed that Damon seems to be the only one right now that Elena wants to be around, and will listen to. These things in combination with his confession last week that Vampire Elena isn't the girl he fell in love with helped Stefan make up his mind that the couple needed to call it quits. I've heard some fans didn't like it that Stefan was the one to break-up, but I appreciate that Stefan has enough self-respect to say enough is enough. He deserves better than sharing his lover's affections with his big brother. Way to go, Stef!
As I said, Stefan wasn't the only one being mature this week. Both Damon and Elena showed growth as well. When Damon was in a situation where he could have taken advantage, he pulled back. As far as Damon is concerned, Elena made her choice, and it wasn't him. Finally he's put his foot down, and is refusing to take sloppy seconds. Like Stefan, Damon deserves a woman who feels he is her first choice. As for Elena, she finally put on her big girl panties, and admitted her true feelings. No matter how painful, she was honest with Stefan, and didn't use emotional blackmail to appear to be the victim. She finally owned up to her feelings.
Despite Elena and Stefan breaking up, despite Elena telling Stefan that she has strong feelings for Damon, I still don't see a happy future for Damon and Elena. At least not now. Maybe not ever. Damon loves Elena, he does, but he loves his baby brother more. I think the guilt over truly getting what he wants at the prospect of losing his brother will be too much, and even if Elena wants to take the next step, I believe ultimately Damon will choose Stefan. Especially since he only seems to be "the one" now she is a vampire. What happens if they are successful in turning her back human? The fear of being cast aside will most likely be enough to make Damon put on the brakes.
Everyone is on a new path, and the way looks dark, and dangerous. Outside forces are trying to break the Scoobies apart, but if they remember the simple fact that they are stronger together than apart, I think they can find their way into the light.