The Vampire Diaries

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The Vampire Diaries Midseason Report Card: C

by at . Comments

The long, cold winter hiatus season is upon us.

So with many TV Fanatic favorites on a break, we're looking back and evaluating their runs so far... report card style!

Click the links to read our Sons of Anarchy Season 5 report card, along with our Walking Dead report card, and then scroll down to see how we feel so far about The Vampire Diaries Season 4...

Vampire Diaries Season 4 Promo Pic

Best Episode: "Memorial." One of my favorites in series history. It featured a tensely-filmed church showdown, he delved into the new Elena, every main character was given something important to do and that ending with Alaric... oh, that ending with Alaric. Tear.

Worst Episode: "O Come, All Ye Faithful." One of my least favorites in series history. A jumbled mess of two non-sensical storylines: 1. Tyler volunteering to case himself in concrete for some inexplicable reason; 2. Elena and Damon continuing to debate the absurd sire bond.

Best Character: Elena. Her transition has driven the season, with the character's changes affecting everyone around her in the especially intriguing early episodes. Nina Dobrev has been outstanding in her portrayal.

Worst Character: Bonnie. I'm sorry, but it's always Bonnie. She's putting every ounce of trust into this Professor Shane guy simply because... he took over teaching for her grandmother? NOTE: if Damon continues to be as irritating has he has been, when it comes to the sire bond and doing the "right thing" and all that nonsense, I may change my vote.

Best Storyline: Jeremy, his transformation into a hunter and the mark that can only grow when he kills vampires.

Worst Storyline: The sire bond. Need I explain why?

Biggest Waste of a Guest Star: Phoebe Tonkin. Perhaps we'll learn a lot more about her now that she's turned on Tyler, but Hayley just showed up out of nowhere; the audience was simply told of her connection to Tyler; she uttered a few snarky slams; and then proceeded to play a major role in the winter finale. In other words: she was nothing more than a plot device.

Most Impressive Wife-Beater-Wearing Physique: Jeremy Gilbert.

Hopes for 2013: Get Elena and Damon together. Period. I'm not a Delena shipper, I'm only a storyline "shipper" and this sire bond is flat out ridiculous. It's totally contrived and plays like an excuse to extend the love triangle infinitely. Let's turn the focus back to the hunt for The Cure, the mystery of The Council death and how The Five plays into all this. I want mythology, not romance.

Overall Grade: C (NOTE: It would have been an A after the first four episodes.)

Your turn, TVD lovers. What grade would you give Season 4 so far?

 

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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I gave it a D. This is the least coherent, least exciting season so far. I get that they're playing with the idea of free will and mind control. The problem is that those themes don't translate to the screen very well. The destiny of the hunters, the hallucinations that result from killing hunters, the sire bonds of the vamps (Elena to Damon) and the hybrids (to Klaus), Professor Shane's hypnotizing of Jeremy and Bonnie, the continued use of compulsion... all of these (and probably more) are examples of characters struggling against outside forces that attempt to control their actions and feelings. With Elena transitioning and the cure finally getting closer, it might tie into some idea about identity. Unfortunately, all of these internal conflicts are a little lacking in ACTION. My favorite part of the show has always been the action. The lack of blood in this season is a big disappointment. Best Episode: Umm... they've all been a little boring so far. Worst Episode: My Brother's Keeper. We're doing the Miss Mystic Falls pageant again? Really? Best Character: Jeremy. It's nice to see the littlest Gilbert break out of his emo phase and finally bash some skulls. Bonnie has the potential to beat him out for this honor, though. I get the feeling that they're keeping her powers under wraps so that we will all be shocked by her abilities down the line. Worst Character: Freakin' Damon, man! When is the last time he killed someone? Or did anything even the least bit reprehensible? I used to love his snark and the way he would oh-so-casually commit murder while maintaining a deeply human core. Now? They've totally defanged him in the name of love. Honorable mentions go to Matt, April, and Rebekah for general uselessness. Best Story: Jeremy's transition into a hunter. Worst Story: There are a lot of duds this season. The hybrid thing is too convoluted to understand. Bonnie's expression thing isn't getting the attention it deserves. Elena's transition feels half-hearted at best. I mean, she spent the first several episodes feeling sick and throwing up. Yuck! The vampire sire bond is out of left field and not at all consistent with the show's own internal logic concerning vampires. I don't even know why Shane's got his fingers in so many pies. I have no idea how they're going to pull all of these threads back together by the season finale. I guess the worst story has got to go the vampire sire bond. It seemed like it was just kind of thrown in there. In fact, we needed an entire episode (We'll Always Have Bourbon Street) just to go back in time and justify the possibility of a vampire sire bond. I'm also pretty sure we've seen Elena say no to and disagree with Damon in the episodes leading to the sire bond revelation. Sire bonding has always been a hybrid thing. Turning it into a vamp thing seems like too much of a stretch. Hopes for 2013: Can Elena PLEASE kill more than just some hunter guy? She's a vampire, now! Let the fangs out. I want Bonnie to go all Dark Willow on us. She's one of the most powerful characters on the show; I want to see her dark side. Also, I'd like to gain some clarity regarding the whole hybrid rebellion and martyrdom. I have no idea what is going on with that.

David and sabrina 2014

The season is kind of turning out wrong but I'll still be on an eye out for the latest news of the season throughout the time. =|

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Let Elena FINALLY tell Damon that she loves him, rather than show scenes where it is hinted; it would be nice to see Elena fight for Damon this time. Make Bonnie a proper witch again! Get to the point regarding the “We are the beginning� storyline. Get Klauroline together. At least for a little while. Please, eventually get rid of Shadypants.

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Worst storyline: I would name the sire-bond twist if I was sure of the end result intended by it. I am undecided regarding this plot. If its aim is to make Elena truly express her feelings for Damon and prove her love to him then I'm all for it, but if it's going to cause Damon to distance himself indefinitely from Elena and cause them to break up due to a contrived reason then it's an atrocious storyline.
Best guest star: Alaric's short but poignant appearance at the end of "Memorial".
Worst guest star: Hayley. I feel that TVD could have done without this character in season 4. Hopes: allow this sire-bond storyline to make Delena stronger and united and not tear them apart or prolong the "will they/won't they" storyline. 3 seasons of that has been enough torment. Elaborate and show more regarding the expression magic storyline. Stop killing Rebekah. She is too awesome to be dead. Bring Katherine back! Make Stefan mature and more manly rather than whiny and selfish. Let Elena FINALLY tell Damon that she loves him, rather than show scenes where it is hinted; it would be nice to see Elena fight for Damon this time. Make Bonnie a proper witch again! Get to the point regarding the “We are the beginning� storyline. Get Klauroline together. At least for a little while. Please, eventually get rid of Shadypants.

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I agree with a lot of your review. Here are my thoughts: Best Episode: Memorial and The Five
Worst Episode: O Come All Ye Faithful Best character: Elena. I love the vampire Elena. Hopefully she can now discontinue to be the constant damsel-in-distress and protect herself or at least defend herself and be dangerous. I love her intensity and her strength, as well as being more lively and adventurous. Worst character: I'm stuck between April and Hayley. For me Hayley is a waste of space without any significant role than to betray Tyler and align herself with Professor Shadypants. April's part has been pointless the entire season so far. However the ending of episode 9 with her not being compelled by Caroline and becoming privy to all the goings-on in Mystic Falls including Rebekah's death and so on could make me interested in her character, depending on how the writers choose to move April's storyline in future. Best storyline: The Five hunters
Worst storyline: I would name the sire-bond twist if I were sure of the end result intended by it. I'm undecided by this plot. If the sire-bond causes Elena to truly express how she feels and prove her love for Damon then I'm all for it, but if it causes Damon to distance himself indefinitely from her or cause them to break up due to a contrived reason then it's an atrocious storyline.
Worst guest star: Hayley. I truly feel that TVD could have done without her in season 4 Hopes: let this sire bond make Delena stronger and united and NOT destroy them or prolong their "will they/wont they" storyline for even longer. 3 seasons of such torment has been enough. Make Stefan more manly and mature rather than whiny and selfish. Get Klauroline together! At least for a little while. Make Elena FINALLY tell Damon that she loves him, and not simply moments where her love is hinted; I would love to see her fight for Damon this time. Stop killing Rebekah. Hopefully she can last the rest of the season and beyond. She is too awesome to be dead. Bring Katherine back! Her presence is definitely missed. Caroline must get over herself and butt out of Elena's love life. Bonnie must become a true witch again. Elaborate and show more of the expression magic storyline! Get to the point regarding the "We are the beginning" storyline.

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Her whole plan made no sense. Tyler is not immortal. He would probably die encased in that concrete. Only originals are immortal. Plus, she never even introduced her witch friend to Tyler. The plan made a lot more sense when Caroline was like: let's trap Klaus in Rebekah's body who is already daggered. Klaus problem solved! They wouldn't even need the concrete anymore. In any case, the failed unsired hybrid overthrow was still much more plausible and likable a story line than this vampire sire bond shit.

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The only contrived thing is Elena's sire bond to Damon. I don't buy it at all and pretty much block out everything that has to do with it and fill in my own version instead.
Episode 9 was much improved. It returned to TVD form with lots of high stakes action and meaningful dialogue not related to the love triangle. Tyler's heart to heart with his mom was sweet. and her death was sad and unexpected (I don't see spoilers). The good guys admitting that maybe they're too hard on Klaus and that they aren't exactly role models was a nice touch. Everything involving Jeremy this episode was great and beautifully executed -him and Bonnie, him and Elena, nice stuff. The whole finding Caroline dead in the bathroom scene was HILARIOUS. I can't remember the girl's name, but then she freed Rebekah. AWESOME turn of events lol. Klaus killing his hybrids was sad; I thought they would put up more of a fight. seriously. I have to admit though Tyler was way too trusting of Hayley. Her whole plan made no sense. Tyler is not immortal. He would probably die encased in that concrete. Only originals are immortal. Plus, she never even introduced her witch friend to Tyler. The plan made a lot more sense when Caroline was like: let's trap Klaus in Rebekah's body who is already daggered. Klaus problem solved! They wouldn't even need the concrete anymore. In any case, the failed unsired hybrid overthrow was still much more plausible and likable a story line than this vampire sire bond shit.

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Look, Elena could be with either brother and it would work out well. They each offer something different. Which has been pointed out to us before. We get it. There's no point in dragging out a love triangle forever. It gets tiring. She finally picks Stefan at the end of season 3 by which time I didn't care anymore anyway, and then dies. whoop to do, and the writers reopen the love triangle again with her as vampire. BARF. I thought Elena's and Stefan's break up was handled right. Hell. If I knew my girlfriend was having commitment issues that only get worse, I would dump her too. Seriously, poor Stefan! Delena was making progress naturally. I don't think anybody felt it was rushed or forced! We all felt like yes this transition feels natural. Elena's feelings for Damon are just too pronounced for Stelena to continue. I don't know why the writers felt the need to throw in this sire crap. I haven't heard anybody complain about Delena being forced or contrived. The only contrived thing is Elena's sire bond to Damon. I don't buy it at all and pretty much block out everything that has to do with it and fill in my own version instead.
Episode 9 was much improved. It returned to TVD form with lots of high stakes action and meaningful dialogue not related to the love triangle. Tyler's heart to heart with his mom was sweet. and her death was sad and unexpected (I don't see spoilers). The good guys admitting that maybe they're too hard on Klaus and that they aren't exactly role models was a nice touch. Everything involving Jeremy this episode was great and beautifully executed -him and Bonnie, him and Elena, nice stuff. The whole finding Caroline dead in the bathroom scene was HILARIOUS. I can't remember the girl's name, but then she freed Rebekah. AWESOME turn of events lol. Klaus killing his hybrids was sad; I thought they would put up more of a fight. seriously. I have to admit though Tyler was way too trusting of Hayley. Her whole plan made no sense. Tyler is not immortal. He would probably die encased in that concrete. Only originals are immortal. Plus, she never even introduced her witch friend to Tyler. The plan made a lot more sense when Caroline was like: let's trap Klaus in Rebekah's body who is already daggered. Klaus problem solved! They wouldn't even need the concrete anymore. In any case, the failed unsired hybrid overthrow was still much more plausible and likable a story line than this vampire sire bond shit.

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I give it a B. Everything was great until this sire BS. The WORST episode was "We'll always have bourbon street. I swear to God this season would have been so much better if it simply didn't exist. like seriously. Watch the whole season and skip that one. BAM much better. Then, in the following episode they (should have) shown how the sire bond WAS just BS, and Elena has total free will. She's just been crazy about Damon since she turned and nothing more. Damon was freakishly obsessed with Katherine for over 100 years. The writers aren't even following their own internal rules. Feelings get heightened, right? So what about Elena's intense feelings for Stefan? Those should have been heightened too. Why only the feelings for Damon? You know, I used to be a Stelena shipper. But after all this love triangle teasing I got really pissed and didn't care about picking a side anymore because clearly the writers didn't care either. I am now a storyline shipper. Look, Elena could be with either brother and it would work out well. They each offer something different. Which has been pointed out to us before. We get it. There's no point in dragging out a love triangle forever. It gets tiring. She finally picks Stefan at the end of season 3 by which time I didn't care anymore anyway, and then dies. whoop to do, and the writers reopen the love triangle again with her as vampire. BARF. I thought Elena's and Stefan's break up was handled right. Hell. If I knew my girlfriend was having commitment issues that only get worse, I would dump her too. Seriously, poor Stefan! Delena was making progress naturally. I don't think anybody felt it was rushed or forced! We all felt like yes this transition feels natural. Elena's feelings for Damon are just too pronounced for Stelena to continue. I don't know why the writers felt the need to throw in this sire crap. I haven't heard anybody complain about Delena being forced or contrived. The only contrived thing is Elena's sire bond to Damon. I don't buy it at all and pretty much block out everything that has to do with it and fill in my own version instead.
Episode 9 was much improved. It returned to TVD form with lots of high stakes action and meaningful dialogue not related to the love triangle. Tyler's heart to heart with his mom was sweet. and her death was sad and unexpected (I don't see spoilers). The good guys admitting that maybe they're too hard on Klaus and that they aren't exactly role models was a nice touch. Everything involving Jeremy this episode was great and beautifully executed -him and Bonnie, him and Elena, nice stuff. The whole finding Caroline dead in the bathroom scene was HILARIOUS. I can't remember the girl's name, but then she freed Rebekah. AWESOME turn of events lol. Klaus killing his hybrids was sad; I thought they would put up more of a fight. seriously. I have to admit though Tyler was way too trusting of Hayley. Her whole plan made no sense. Tyler is not immortal. He would probably die encased in that concrete. Only originals are immortal. Plus, she never even introduced her witch friend to Tyler. The plan made a lot more sense when Caroline was like: let's trap Klaus in Rebekah's body who is already daggered. Klaus problem solved! They wouldn't even need the concrete anymore. In any case, the failed unsired hybrid overthrow was still much more plausible and likable a story line than this vampire sire bond shit.

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Agree soooooo much with @overeastside Hands down one of the best characters

Vampire Diaries Quotes

You want a love that consumes you. You want passion and adventure, and even a little danger... I want you to get everything you're looking for. But for right now, I want you to forget that this happened. Can't have people knowing I'm in town yet. Goodnight, Elena.

Damon

I wanna say thank you for giving me everything I always wanted. A love to consume me, and passion, and adventure. There's nothing more I could ever want than for it to last forever, but it can't. This is the last time I'm gonna see you. This is goodbye, Damon.

Elena [to Damon]
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