Vampire Diaries: The Last Dance


“The fun is just beginning.”

...In which Josie bites her nails and forgets to breathe during the creepiest high school dance ever seen on television. Wow, that was tense!

I’m getting ahead of myself, though. Picking up right where we left off: Elena is now owner of the Salvatore house, Katherine is being self-tortured by Klaus in Alaric’s body (that is so dark), and Bonnie is the mightiest of witches. Oh, and Damon is scheming, as are Matt and Sheriff Forbes. Another beautiful day in sleepy Mystical Falls.

Klauric, as I think we should call him, was hilarious. (And even sexier than usual.) He’s also a good example of one of VD’s greatest strength: they don’t drag anything out. I expected to languish in a full episode of can-he-or-can’t-he tension: can a vampire inhabiting a human body enter a human’s house? 10 minutes in, the question was answered, and the safe house made unsafe, at least for this week.

Bonnie was even likeable—well, I still don’t want to be BFFs with the witch, but I do not want Jeremy to have to get over a third dead girlfriend. At some point he has to lose his virginity, after all. Her willingness to self-sacrifice felt rather extreme, but I bought it because I have never fully understood where she’s coming from, and because she has traditionally despised vampires.

And, while all the other characters of course had important roles, Klauric and Bonnie were really the stars of tonight’s show. Their pyrotechnic showdown was one of the most visually striking scenes this show has done, and while it was a bit over the top, it worked in retrospect: Bonnie’s spell and trickery necessitated a lot of visual distractions. I really thought she was dead. More importantly, I really thought that Alaric’s body might die.

Hence the nail-biting. All the signs have been pointing to Bonnie’s imminent demise, so I began to wonder if that was just a blind so we’d be hit with the death of the world’s most appealing history teacher. Even knowing that Alaric would make it through the night, I still tensed up on re-watching the macabre dance. I loved the way the camera panned from couples as they paired and re-paired, some of them scheming, some of them twisting…and did you catch Stefan spinning Elena into Damon’s arms?

While Klauric and Bonnie were the stars, Damon played the man behind the curtain tonight. His speech to Stefan felt a bit like it could be a strange Republican political allegory, but I’m choosing not to go there. Damon might make victory possible, because he’s not distracted by petty morality. He has one clear goal and is willing to sacrifice everyone to keep Elena safe. Sacrifice is certainly the theme of the season, which raises one question: would Damon sacrifice himself? Does he want Elena to live, full stop? Or does he want to continue to be able to live near her?

As for the Caroline/Matt/Sheriff Forbes B-plot: hmm. I’ve always liked Sheriff Forbes’s combination of vulnerability and nail-strength toughness. I hope she can realize that Caroline is still Caroline, only with fewer issues and a rather sanguine eating disorder. And I hope she can renew her friendship with Damon, somehow. I always liked them together.

Bites:

• Klauric: “I wish there was something good I could say about the sixties. They sucked. Except the Beatles, of course. They made it bearable.”

• Damon: “Something tells me he’s not going to be 16 and pimply.”

• Klauric: “He is the biggest, baddest vampire around.”

• Klauric: “Who is this guy?”
Katherine: “He’s the local vampire hunter.”
Klauric: “Well, that explains the clothes.”

• Damon: “Remember the last decade dance? The vampires were all ‘argh’! And you were all ‘aah!’”

• Damon: “Don’t get me wrong, Stefan. I don’t mind being the bad guy. I’ll make all the life and death decisions while you’re busy worrying about collateral damage. Elena will hate me for it. But at the end of the day, I’ll be the one to keep her alive.”

And Pieces:

• I liked Elena almost not letting Damon into the house.

• Caroline is also sporting thicker eyebrows, but they look great on her.

• Speaking of great looking people, Stefan + Steve McQueen tie = ooh la la.

• So Elijah and the dagger are back in the game, eh? I did kinda see that coming. Elena should have at least dragged the body out of the house before pulling out the dagger.

• We are heading for the home stretch. Now is probably a good time to remind everyone that we are a spoiler-free site. And we have the power of 100 dead witches to back up our policy.

Four out of four sexy hippies.

8 comments:

Billie Doux said...

I so agree, Josie. I love how they don't drag anything out. It's like they're sitting in the writers room saying, okay, we're going to do this plot point, so how can we twist it? And what is the thing our audience will least expect us to do with it? I actually thought Bonnie was really dead, and I have no excuse for that after being a longtime fan of Buffy and Supernatural.

I'm totally into the "what is the Sheriff going to do about Caroline" subplot, too. I have no idea where they're going with this. And the Caroline/Matt costumes were so cool. Except with Caroline a blonde, I was thinking she should have gone as Marilyn Monroe, the other female sixties icon. And Matt still could have been Jack Kennedy. :)

JP said...

Wow. Just finished watching. And I'm so glad that I'm not a nail-biting type, because there wouldn't be anything left.

I think there's one small mistake in that review. Jeremy probably isn't a virgin anymore. He definitely had sex with Vicki. Probably with Anna. Just saying.

Damon was awesome. I always choose you. No wonder Elena glanced at the bed before leaving the room. And that last sentence is totally because I was just talking about Jeremy's love life.

I really thought that this was the last time we saw Bonnie. That was very convincing. Although I kind of thought that she'd take Klaus with her. And how does all this possessing work? I saw there were some blood bottles or something like that when the warlock worked his magic. But this part is still a little hazy for me. My brain just doesn't want to grasp that. By the way, Bonnie looked like a witch. Maybe it was because of the hair or something. Not being dead would explain why Damon was so careful putting her in the trunk. And I was so stupid to think that he actually cared. No, he chooses Elena.

I hope that Matt and sheriff Forbes don't mess anything up. For example, killing Caroline would be the biggest mistake they could make. We haven't seen her enough lately. Tyler is gone so there's no reason to show her I guess.

Katherine is not Katherine when she's afraid. She was too much like Elena. I just didn't get the Kat feeling today.

And last but not least. Klauric might be sexy, but I still want Alaric back. So that Elena could call him Rick during history class.

Mark Greig said...

Klaus possessing Alaric was a twisted hoot, especially his dad dancing at the ‘60s dance that was oddly lacking in ‘60s music (damn those pesky expensive rights issues, they spoil everything). But now I’m worried that when the real Klaus does show up he won’t be nearly as much fun as Matt Davis is right now.

Matt and Caroline as JFK and Jackie O is clearly a sign of some impending doom and heartbreak. In a weird kinda way he is already going behind her back with a blonde.

CrazyCris said...

I thought it was great! And the tension during that show-down?! goose-bumps!!!
But I was pretty sure Bonnie wasn't going to die. Something about that exchange she had with Damon right before the confrontation... but I thought he was going to give her his blood so that she would die and then come back a vampire! And that's why he needed to get her out of there asap afterwards. Also when Jeremy was lighting those candles around her it looked like she was lying on dirt... and from Damon told Jeremy I half expected him to be there as a volunteer for Bonnie's first meal!

So they definitely fooled me!

I hope Sheriff Forbes can accept Bonnie. She couldn't last time, but I'm hoping that was just the shock. Now she's going to have time to assimilate the information. Also, the more time Matt spends with her the more he'll realise she's still herself and won't be able to bring himself to betray her. Just hoping!

Tom L said...

Okay, so what was this episode about? Undoing what the episode itself did. Bonnie was our heroes' secret weapon. Then she wasn't. And now she is again. I thought that was kind of dumb. But among the dumbness, there were things to be liked.

The Good.

Bonnie and Elena's friendship. We've been told since episode one they are BFF, but we haven't seen enough of it. And then this episode gave the two girls enough space to show how close they are. Hey, they're both willing to sacrifice for one another, and their conversation about it was lovely. Elena's reaction to her best friend's death got to me, even though the death scenario was so strange, what with Damon taking the body away and all.

Damon and Elena. "I will always choose you." Enough said. Actually, no, I want to say more. Stefan and Elena are not working for me as a couple. Apart from Stefan being mad at Elena some episodes ago, nothing happens to shake their relationship. They're boring (not as much as Chuck and Sarah, because that's a hard one to beat). And even though Damon's development got kind of awkward (where have his feelings towards Rose's death gone to?), what really is the difference between him and Stefan? Both have been good and evil, Elena only got to know the better parts of Stefan first. I'm not a shipper, but I really want Elena to give Damon some attention.

Klauric. A hoot. The way he intimidated Katherine, infiltrated the gang and taunted Elena were great. I have two requests, though: ass-kicking Katherine and Rick back.

Caroline, Matt and Forbes. This situation is so going to end up in a tragedy, I can feel it. And I'm on the edge of my seat for that storyline.

The bad.

Okay, so all that attention to the non-death of Bonnie and no attention to Klaus posessing Alaric? Man, I'm going to be so pissed if Jenna gets in danger for not knowing Alaric is posessed (or not knowing anything at all, actually).

The tension at the dance went on for too long.

Elena resurrecting Elijah. That's not bad for the episode itself, and having Elijah back is terrific, sure. And although I can see why it was necessary to have Elijah away for a few episodes, that's yet another twist undone. And it's stuff like that that is making me rethink if VD is as awesome as I thought.

Oh, well, I still can't wait for next week's. But I'm seriously thinking of waiting for season three to be over so I can watch it on a roll, just like I did with season one. Maybe that's how the show works better for me.

Josie Kafka said...

Tom, what great comments on both this and the previous episode.

It sounds like you felt about this episode the way I felt about the mid-season finale, "By the Light of the Moon." So I sympathize.

I agree that VD might be better all at once, too. It takes me a while to get into it each week, but if I marathoned my way through it in, say, a weekend, I know I'd be completely immersed. And, at the end, likely insane. :-)

Samantha Gomes said...

Episodes like this one remind me why I love VD, and keep one vital question alive, shouting inside my brain: How can anyone not choose Damon first? Damn, he's not only drop-dead gorgeous, but also witty, intelligent and devoted. I mean, I understand Stefan falls into the category of Mr. Right, sensitive and all. But in the end, if a lamp burns out at home, I'd know for sure that it would be Damon I'd call to have it changed. At least he gets things done, not consuming himself with questions like "is there a right place we can dispose of the burnt lamp". Just saying...

Patryk said...

I was expecting a twist from the moment Damon asked Bonnie if she is still willing to go all the way. So the ressurection wasn't a surprise once she dies. Just before she died I was expecting something unexpected, but after it was pretty clear. But where did Klaus go, no evil gloating after the kill? e just left our heroes and anti-heroes to tend to the body. For an original kinda sloppy.

Yes VD is so great watched without interruptions that's why I waited a year. I'm doing the same with Finge and Supernatural.