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Vampire Diaries: Break on Through

“Something to keep the killer in you at bay.”

“Break on Through” focused on three separate storylines, none of which I’m in love with. In fact, this episode—for the first time in my VD-watching history—felt long. Right up until the last few minutes, that is, when the emotions really got going. VD hasn’t lost its touch. Right? And my favorite characters are all going to be okay? Rainbows, unicorns, and blood frenzies?


No matter how much we might want it not to be true, it is: Alaric is crazy. Gilbert-crazy, which is a form of crazy that is too wacky even for the DSM-IV. Most of this episode felt like it was centered on the grieving process: taking its time with Alaric’s vacillation between believing he might be crazy and denying it, only to show himself in all of his creepy glory at the end. Meredith Fell seems like a good person, and it’s nice to know that Alaric isn’t that tragically unlucky in love. Just in life.

What does that mean for my favorite history teacher (who never seems to teach)? Bonnie’s spell seems to have happened—will the magical herbal vitamins take care of his psychotic other personality? What will happen if he gets supernaturally killed (again)? And what does this mean for Jeremy? Did he really get a dog, or is “dog” psycho-killer code for “I’m busy stabbing people in the stomach, text me later”? I’ve got lots of questions, and I look forward to the answers.


In this week’s second plot, Bonnie’s mom proves to be just as bad at being a vampire-mom as she was at being a witchy-mom. We haven’t seen Bonnie for a while now, and that made it that much harder for me to care about this storyline, which should have been quite affecting. As it is, it felt like we’re getting the story of Caroline and her father, shifted to fit Bonnie’s slightly-different circumstance. Caroline’s speech to Abby was the highlight of the entire plot. And her statement about going through something similar with her father was quite ambiguous, wasn’t it? (I’m never going to let that go, am I?)

Sage, Damon, and Rebekah (or Three’s A Party)

As predicted, Damon’s friend Sage from last week’s flashback showed up in Mystic Falls this week. Finn the Original strung her along for 900 years, according to Damon, but Sage refuses to give up on him. Although Finn was one of the Originals to bloop out of existence in “All My Children,” Sage believes he’ll be back.(As do I.) That means our heroes both gained and lost tonight: more white ash tree from the Wickery Bridge sign, but one more roadblock to complete destruction of the Originals.


I cried during Elena’s conversation with Jeremy. Last week, Elena found Stefan feeding again. Damon has adopted a policy of cold snarky detachment. Bonnie blamed Elena for her mother’s vampirism. And Alaric, her last remaining “family” member, is crazy: he and Stefan both have crazy dark sides that can only barely be controlled. Her losses have been piling up, and her desperate urge to connect with her brother broke my heart: he couldn’t even register how much she missed him, because he’d been compelled to be disinterested in Mystic Falls and the people he left behind.

Jeremy must return soon, however: he has a ring and might have to be un-crazified by Bonnie. Hopefully he can be un-compelled, too, so that he and Elena can connect again. There was something beautiful (and creepy, of course) about Alaric’s two different wills: one for Elena, with bank accounts and all the stuff we have to deal with after someone dies; one for Jeremy, with frightening instructions for him to continue the work of slaughtering people.

Twice tonight, Elena seemed to be talking about both Stefan and Alaric: one with Damon and once with Stefan himself. It’s telling that she doesn’t seem to feel Damon’s loss quite as much. Their awkward kiss might be a sign of lust, but I suspect Elena feels the distance from Stefan more than from Damon. Or maybe it’s the difference in how each of them was disloyal to her: Stefan with blood, but Damon with Rebekah.


• Damon: “Take him out for chicken soup, get him a martini, make sure he doesn’t kill anyone.”

• Elena: “How could you just go out feeding with Stefan like some vampire pub crawl?”

• Damon: “We’re predators, not puppies.”

• Damon: “Ah, yes. Back when you two were in love, and it was all rainbows and unicorns.”

• Damon: “I told you, I’d save your creepy boyfriend!”

• Damon: “Just making sure the witch didn’t turn you into a toad, or a block of salt.”

• Damon: “It’s like house-arrest. Light.”

And Pieces:

• Did Sage mean to imply that all women have a weakness? Or just that she’s better at sussing out womanly weakness?

• I’d completely forgotten about Logan Fell. Nice Fell continuity tonight.

• Sage must have a sunlight ring.

• Of all of Alaric’s crimes, I’m most upset that Isobel filed two restraining orders against him. I’m trying—hard—to chalk that up to Isobel being crazy. Because Alaric stalking some grad student isn’t appealing. It’s disgusting.

• I hate to say it, but Crazy Alaric had a point: why isn’t the Council doing more about the rampant vampire problem?

• Paul Wesley got a scene with real-life wife Torrey De Vitto this week, and it was a good one.

• According to the ancient copy of Entertainment Weekly I read in the dentist’s office this week, there are internet rumors that Nina Dobrev and Ian Somerhalder are a couple. That makes me smile.

This feels like an absurdly negative review, and I don’t want it to be. But this episode just felt off in some way, even more so than last week. Is it me? Is it just a minor lapse in an otherwise good season?

Josie Kafka is a full-time cat servant and part-time rogue demon hunter. (What's a rogue demon?)


  1. Elena Dobrev, Josie? :)

    Poor Ian Somerhalder. He spends his work days forced to make out with Claire Holt and Cassidy Freeman, and then he has to go home to Nina Dobrev. I feel for him, I really do. When I'm not insanely jealous, that is.

    I actually enjoyed this episode but I could be biased since my stupid Y chromosome
    won't let me not like an episode where Cassidy Freeman is naked in a shower. Damn you, male urges! You're compromising my ability to be critical.

    I'm starting to grow tired with the entire 'Kill Klaus' plotline. It is getting silly how many times they have tried and failed to kill the cockney Viking git. I'm wondering, is Sage really in love with Finn or, since he made her, is it a sire bond, like with Tyler and Klaus?

    I really hope that they don't kill Alaric. Damon needs his drinking buddy and Elena needs her Giles. Plus, he's only other male character I really like.

  2. I am so relieved Josie to know I'm not the only one who hasn't been loving TVD lately. I don't know what it is about these last few episodes but things have been feeling "off" for some reason. It's too bad really because I was just looking through my past reviews of this season and it has been an impressively strong one!
    Perhaps it's because I was never too fond of Alaric as a character and I'm getting sick of all the Original stuff which for once feels dragged out (which is not something this show ever does)
    Here's hoping for a return to form next week and a mindblowing pack of episodes for the rest of the season because they seriously deserve to go out on top!

  3. I so don't want this for Alaric. And even though I like Cassidy Freeman's character Sage better than Tess, I'm getting flashes of the final couple of seasons of Smallville now. Has everyone in the cast except Nina Dobrev been in Smallville?

    Not their strongest episode, but I still enjoyed it.

  4. I found this episode somewhat wanting as well. The best bit was Caroline lecturing everyone!!
    I am unsure of the Alaric plotline--it feels too tidy. Either he is moving on from TVD and the writers are looking for a way to write him out, or there is another twist coming, but I found the ending to this storyline very unsatisfactory. And I agree with Mark, his relationship with Damon is one of the highlights of the show.
    I found the conversation with Meredith and Alaric about Logan’s death a bit strange so am thinking (okay, hoping) perhaps Meredith is drugging Alaric to make him seem/be the killer, in revenge for Logan’s death.
    I agree the originals storyline is boring now, especially with Elijah gone (again). Rebecca is annoying and fairly unaware for a 1000 year old vampire. I had kinda hoped they would do a Klaus/Caroline storyline (all mixed loyalty romance angst), but it looks like they have moved away from that now.
    And Abbeys storyline? Why did thy even have her turned instead of killed to have her written out like that? Again I hope the writers give some clarification to that, b/c it would have been a good storyline to give some traction for Bonnie's character.
    And Jeremy-he is definitely up top something...
    Sorry rant over--was just very unsatisfied with this episode.

  5. Not the strongest episode, but I still enjoyed it. Especially the last scene with the brothers and the sign. I just loved Damon getting one over on the ancient vampires!

    They need to wrap up the ancients story ASAP and they need to let Alaric go (if he goes) with more grace than he is showing now. It would really bug me if he went out as a truly evil character.

  6. Wow, I seem to find it hard to think that an episode in which Damon dances, makes out with 2 different women, almost has a threesome and has that shower scene can be called long. Or maybe it's me just being hormonal.
    Like Robin, I feel that Alaric's doomed plotline is too tidy. Or it is my denying the fact that our favorite History teacher is a psycho who never teaches.
    Either way, I felt this episode a bit too distant from dealing with the conflicts I'm more connected to and interested in, such as Damon, Elena and Stefan, and I kind of miss Klaus. But it was good to se Caroline back and now that we can destroy the old sign the mayor wants so badly and make ourselves weapons to go get some originals, let's see how things go.

  7. I was just tellin my boyfriend that the show got really dull... The originals kinda lost their timing.. i mean.. right now i dont even care if klaus is dead or alive. Abby is actually a new character so i dont really care about her either.. the whole stefan-drinks-human-blood-and-becoming-psycho-killer thingy is getting old... Tylor is gone, Elijah is gone, Jermy is gone, Katherin is gone... i mean seriously.. whats up with that???? at least damon is still smokin hot! :)
    I miss Buffy.

  8. This and the last episode are two of the worse VD episodes I've seen - probably since early season one. Of course, my expectations for a good episode of the show have risen since then, too.

    Nobody wants Alaric to be the bad guy - ever. I'm guessing Elena being "all alone" will have impact on the rest of the season, but they could have done it in another way that didn't essentially rewrite a favorite character's story.

    Plus, these episodes gave far too much screen time to unlikeable new characters: Sage, and Dr. Fell. At least we got the enjoyment of Damon knowing he couldn't trust Sage, and being proven right. But even if Dr. Fell becomes the most helpful, insightful character in the show, her character was introduced in a way to make fans hate her forever.

    Abby's departure felt like a cheap way to get rid of a character the writers didn't have a use for right now, but may want to bring back as needed. Isn't the fact that she was always there for her stepson proof that she'd changed her running-off ways? Why is she unhappy at losing her witchy connection with nature when she wanted to get as far away from being a witch as possible?

    Hoping the last 5 episodes turn things around.


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