If anyone had told me that Kai would end up being my favorite part of a Vampire Diaries episode, I would have laughed heartily in disbelief. What a pleasant surprise.
I thought Chris Wood (Kai) did an outstanding job in this episode. Kai kept observing out loud how he would have reacted before, and was all bemused but oddly accepting that he didn't feel that way any more. Like darn, I can't quite bring myself to burn my sister to death, what's with that? He made multiple attempts to open the connection to 1994 Hell even after being stabbed several times, which was a lot more effort to help Bonnie than I would ever have expected. And his lines about Googling empathy and tears as alien secretions made me laugh out loud and, well, like him. I like Kai now. In the space of one episode. How about that.
While I'm talking good performances, I thought Kat Graham did a nice job in this episode, too. Bonnie's bourbon-bolstered suicide attempt wasn't at all self-pitying, but came across as an understandable reaction to years of crushing loneliness and despair. I liked that they put that very Ghost-like moment with Jeremy in the cloud of carbon monoxide. I even thought for a moment that Jeremy was going to take Bonnie's place and get stuck in 1994 for eternity. Although if they did that, the gang would spend the entire next season trying to retrieve him, too. No point in that.
On a cuteness scale of one to ten, Stefan and Caroline in the woods digging for Miss Cuddles was an eleven. Did they always have this level of chemistry? I'm starting to wonder what I ever saw in Damon and Elena, who are together again, even if the actors playing them are not. I don't ship Damon and Elena any more, probably because I am consciously aware of how difficult it must be for Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev to do love scenes now that they hate each other. (That's what you get for getting involved with a co-worker, huh?)
But Stefan and Caroline teasing each other about killing rage, catharsis and M&Ms was completely adorable. I thought we were finally going to get smoochies after she pulled the head off the bear, but they're probably saving that for the season finale.
In the subplots I care little about, Enzo is forcing Matt to help him corrupt Sarah Salvatore and I've pretty much forgotten why. I almost liked Enzo when he was introduced, but I'm ready for Matt to outwit and stake him now. I hope that's where this is going. I care even less about Liv the witch and post-hybrid Tyler, who couldn't see that Liv just was lashing out after losing the most important person in her life, so he dropped her like a rock. I sort of respect Liv's suicidal death charge at Kai, but the consequences were just too dire for her to do such a thing, and it was such an obvious plot device intended to prove Kai had truly changed.
But this was still a terrific episode, even if it contained Tyler. Tell me again why they didn't write him out several seasons ago?
Bits and pieces:
-- I so enjoy the way Damon loves Bonnie now. All it took was being imprisoned together. Much like Damon with Enzo, except that Enzo is a jerk.
-- Qetsiyah's blood is apparently powerful enough to break Bonnie out of 1994 Hell. I assume we'll all be taking a road trip to Nova Scotia in the next episode?
-- There was a news item recently that Steven R. McQueen is leaving The Vampire Diaries at the end of the season. I assume that's the reason for his sudden deep desire to go to art school someplace that isn't Mystic Falls.
Stefan: "Do you think that maybe you're just a little confused about what you're actually upset about?"
Caroline: "Yes, probably. But my mom's dying and my best friend is stuck in an alternate universe, and her bear is in a hole in the woods. There's only one of those things I can do anything about."
Stefan: "I'm not big on digging. Calluses."
Caroline: "You bury corpses all the time."
Stefan: "Yeah. But I don't dig them up."
Stefan: "So do you really think that finding a teddy bear will make everything right with the world?"
Caroline: "You know what? You're right. This is such a waste of time. I really should be at the dive bar picking a fight with a stranger in order to feel pain."
Jeremy: "We should trust the guy who changed personalities overnight?"
Kai: "Think of it like Elena in reverse."
Kai: "By the way, how much does that suck about Patrick Swayze?"
Kai: "I tried every method in the book. Hey, I drove down to D.C. 'cause there was this museum that has an actual guillotine…"
Kai: "Hey! Why don't I reanimate your dead parents for a tea party while I'm at it? … Sorry. Insensitive."
Elena: "I didn't know you and Bonnie had a death pact."
Damon: "It was my idea. I thought of it after we watched The Bodyguard for the billionth time."
Loved it. Four out of four dismembered teddy bears,
Billie Doux is the founder of Doux Reviews and has been reviewing her favorite shows for quite some time. More Billie Doux.
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