This is my favorite TVD episode this season, in no small part because of Marguerite MacIntyre’s excellent portrayal of Sheriff Elizabeth Forbes: mother, friend, and moral guide extraordinaire.
In an interview with the Hollywood Reporter, showrunner Julie Plec described this episode’s goals as “hit[ting] the theme of the ordinary business of dying and death.” And that’s what this episode did: after Caroline’s understandable but misguided attempt to save her mother supernaturally, Sheriff Forbes tries to save herself—metaphorically speaking—by resolving one last mystery, closing one last case, and leaving even more of a mark on the people she has affected and cared for over the years.
But there is no mystery to the deaths of Elena’s parents. Like Liz’s cancer, those deaths are “natural.” And that is the most miserable of mysteries, but at least discovering the truth and fully understanding it allows Liz to move on.
I really liked that this episode kept Caroline and her mom apart. Liz and Damon have always had excellent friendship-chemistry, and he seemed to get that she needed a partner rather than a hand-wringer on her last day at the office. Damon may be a murderer—all those open cases!—but the scene of him tucking Liz in also showed how much of a caretaker he is, too.
Caroline using the dream-creating vampire technique that we first saw in Season Two’s “Descent” (another excellent Damon-and-dying-friend episode) was a beautiful way of Caroline letting her mom go, and helping her mom realize that she could go. Of course, mourning is never that easy, and I expect Caroline to go to pieces in the next episode.
Perhaps Stefan will help. Liz Forbes encouraged him to be there for Caroline (the micromanaging must be genetic), and the Stefan/Caroline friendship has progressed to hand-holding and kissing. Stefan surely won’t take advantage of Caroline in her time of mourning, but Caroline has now lost all of her family: she needs someone to be there for her. I hope that this time, Stefan won’t screw that up.
And hopefully Jeremy won’t screw up art school and/or vampire hunting. There’s something delightfully humorous in the fact that Elena and Damon think they compelled Jeremy into art school for his art (but didn’t tell him) and that Alaric is encouraging Jeremy to pursue his inner hunting desires (but didn’t tell Elena and Damon) (or maybe did tell Damon, which seems more likely, now that I think about it).
Did I love Enzo messing with Jeremy for no particular reason? No. As Billie said last week, this is a subplot that she—and I—care little about. It’s like a weird twist on Les liaisons dangereuses, with Enzo as the Vicomte de Valmont and Sarah Salvatore in the role of the naïve Cecile. I’d expected sexual hijinks, but it looks like Enzo is going to tempt Sarah Salvatore with vampiric power. Okay.
Bites and Pieces:
• I wonder how Bonnie is doing.
• I wonder how Jo is doing.
• I wish we got more Alaric.
• Oh, no Tyler! Did anyone miss him?
Four out of four training wheels.
Josie Kafka reviews The Vampire Diaries, True Detective, Game of Thrones, and various other things that take her fancy. She is a full-time cat servant and part-time rogue demon hunter. (What's a rogue demon?)
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