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The Vampire Diaries Review: Compulsive Behavior

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On your marks... get set... CURE!

The Vampire Diaries finally returned after a lengthy hiatus this week, airing an "After School Special" that featured the return of Rebekah, harsh truth from Elena, a transformation for Tyler, sides being chosen in a race for the elusive elixir and, unfortunately, a rather lame writing crutch to get everyone there.

Who knew compulsion could make everything so easy?

Questions for Stefan

It was a pleasure to see Claire Holt back in my living room (or as close as she'll ever get to my living room... damn), as Rebekah can always be relied on to bring the perfect combination of pain and pity, revenge and bitterness.

She lashes out because she's lonely, she turns her sorrow into rage. Can you blame her? Considering all she's been through with Klaus as a brother?

Rebekah is a terrific character, but simply locking everyone in the library and forcing the truth out of them was far from a terrific move for the show. Didn't we learn in Writing 101 to show and not tell? It doesn't make for mesmerizing television to have characters sitting around a table, reciting dialogue to move the story forward.

Not to mention how this just adds another chink in the paper thin armor of that whole sire bond thing. Why didn't Damon just have Klaus compel Elena before? If there's a way for her to be forced to come clean about her feelings... why didn't that come up before?

When we left The Vampire Diaries Season 4 in December, Damon ordered Elena away. Fast forward fewer than one episode and now she's certain that she loves him and that's enough for him to invite her back to the cabin for some naked bedroom action (if you know what I mean!). Please, pretty, pretty please with sugar and Bonnie's magic salt on top - can we be done now?

Can Elena and Damon just be together without all this contrived back-and-forth?

Of course, the main takeaway here is that Stefan now knows the truth. But he won't accept the truth. That's why he wants to team up with Rebekah and find that cure in order to turn Elena human again and find out - no, really, truly, seriously find out! - if she's in love with Damon. No wonder Elena feels like a "broken toy," a sad/apt description for how Stefan has been looking at her.

I feel the guy's pain, but it's rather clear at this point: she loves Damon. Move on, Stef. May I recommend the gorgeous blonde blood-sucker standing right in front of you?

Out in the woods, meanwhile... it's AWESOME! Jeremy is jacked, Klaus is turning humans into vampire prey, Matt is wearing a varsity letter jacket. We need to dedicate a lot more time to this storyline (enter The Vampire Diaries promo for next week's episode. Yes!). I'm all in on Jeremy and his mark and Klaus' being a total bad ass and double pepperoni pizza and the idea that some immortal dude named Silas can raise the dead.

This is fun Vampire Diaries lore and mythology, a lot more fun than Elena's oscillating, supposedly sired feelings.

Finally, in the Totally and Completely Random News Department:

  • Bonnie's father has been elected temporary Mayor, even though he's never actually around and has been referenced about three times in four seasons.
  • Kol is back!
  • April is ping-ponging back and forth from Rebekah's secretary to Bonnie's partner in witch crime to town tattle tale. Sorry, Katherine, you're no longer the show's most obvious plot device.

So, yes, The Vampire Diaries is back, but so are some of the problems that have plagued its past few episodes. Still, I maintain hope!

Team Stelena vs. Team Delena has been replaced with Team Rebekah/Stefan vs. Team Klaus/Damon vs. Team Shane/Bonnie. Who will get to the cure first? What will that squad do with it at that time? And who are YOU rooting for, TVD Fanatics?

Review

Editor Rating: 3.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (1376 Votes)

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

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Caroline is awful lately. She completely betrayed Elena. I like the Stefan/ Rebekah Dynamic. I thought the I love you to Damon was way too soon. Sex and I love you...it all just happened so fast since she had just chosen Stefan when the season began. Also...why the hell did Damon order her to come to the cabin?! Of course she is going to cause she is sired... he should've been like "well come if you want." I can't stand April... and Bonnie is so dumb...obviously you can't trust this Shane guy. Why isnt anyone letting her know. And I do understand that Stefan wants to know if what Elena feels for Damon is real but to go through all these extreme lengths... its kinda crazy. I want to see him have some fun. Drink some more. Have meaningless sex... live a little and stop being so mopey and Depressed. Thats why I think rebekah could be good for him. I wonder how pissed Elena is going to be at Damon for letting Klaus kill all those people.
Tyler...i dunno. Im bored with him. They could kill him off and i'd be cool with that.
I'd like to see a new love interest for Matt that isnt as annoying as April... Someone strong and awesome. Maybe a werewolf for himself :)

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Stefan really needs to move on. She told you that she wasn't IN love with you, what more do you want? "I need to find out she REALLY feels about me." LAME. Shane is creepy ugh and I wish somebody would tell Bonnie that the magic's she practicing is bad, EVIL. She's so naive, hanging to everything Shane says. My thoughts exactly. I hoped Stefan would move on but NO... this is SO annoying, really. And I never liked Bonnie, but this sheepish following of everything Shane says is a whole new level!
Best part of the episode: Klaus and Rebekah. Just perfect. I hope they somehow are able to come around later this season, so they team up again. They're just awesome.

Redoktober

@ Jay. Exactly what i just posted about. You people just love to tear one brother down to prop up another. THEY ARE BOTH FLAWED. Calm your DE shipper pants. That scene with Damon was such a RECTON. A clear attempt by the writers to keep the ship alive at the time and most people (if being unbiased) will see it as clear as day. The Damon we met at the start of the series would have never done that....NEVER. He would have compelled the shit out of her to be his little amusement. Want proof, rewatch 1x03 Friday night lights when Damon tried to compel her to like him. That flask back scene was so out of character for him at the time it was just a plain DE shipper hand out FAIL!

Charminglychandler

I was all KACHOW! when Elena saw that Caroline is not her best friend any more, she is Stefans best friend. Which is a whole new layer of betrayal between the two of them. Caroline was so out of line telling Stefan about Elena & Damons 'activities'....but at least now Elena knows she can't trust her to be on her side about anything any more. I loved Caroline last season...but she's falling out of favor quickly and I just wish her and Stefan would hook up already (and leave Tyler to be with someone, anyone, else. Because for all the dick moves on Tyler's part...she is more invested in Stefans life than that of her boyfriend.

Charminglychandler

I am so annoyed with the turn of Stefan's character. I mean just shut.up.dude. I thought Elena's description of feeling like a broken toy in need of fixing was so on point. Stefan's problem has always been the need to keep Elena this perfect thing in his life. Never wanting her to be involved, always wanting to keep her away from the reality of his life, always wanting her to be this perfect human that's all for him. Too bad Damon took her out of the box and played with her (boom. I went there). Stefan and Elena can't just be what they were, and I'm going to need Stefan to realize that. Although as long as there's hot Delena vamp sex...I suppose he can do what he wants.

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I guess Damon hasn't heard bros before hoes. Because Elena really looks like a bitch right now and I really start to hate them both.
I'm starting to like Stefan/Rebekah dynamic :)

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To whateva, if you recall Damon actually met Elena first and compelled her to forget so that she wouldn't be thrown
Into the crazy , drama filled life of being with a vampire. That was very selfless. Then enters Stephen who can't stay away from her because she looked just like Catherine. He needed to "know her". Damon feel for Elena along the way but kept his distance while always protecting her, even when it was from Stephen. Damon loves Elena unconditionally. You know this because unlike Stephen who loved her as a human but can't stand her as a vampire , Damon loves her either way. That's why he to is looking for the cure. Also , lets not forgot the episode when Damon goes to give Elena her necklace back (the one that keeps her from being compelled) and their in her room and right before he puts it on her he tells her his feelings but then compels her to forgot because he thought Stephen was better for her...again , selfless, unconditional love. Even when Elena hurt him time and time again he was always there to protect her. I am happy that finally Damon is getting the love back in return. I was very upset that they keep playing around with it. Saying at first she was sired to him . Just leave it alone already

Amie

No, seriously, now that I think of it, Elena and Damon are both so selfish and self-obsorbed they belong together because with all the "concern" they share for their respective siblings, they care more about their own feelings above anyone else. Elena was like yo hows Jeremy and 5 seconds later - lets bang. Same for Damon - five seconds he is concerned about how Stefan took the news that Damon betrayed him - and then he is like lets bang. May they live selfishly ever after.

Amie

This episode proved more than ever what a selfish bitch Elena is. Fine, thanks to the "specifically for Delena wusses" written dialogue in this episode we found out she still loves Stefan and not in love with him anymore. Good, whatever, finally we sorted it out. But to start saying No! when Stefan wants his memories errased by Becks....thats low, and five mins later she calls Damon and is all like yeah Stefan did not take the news well, but screw it lets talk about how I luff you........I am so glad Stefan walked out of there not looking back at that little selfish bitch. No, seriously, now that I think of it, Elena and Damon are both so selfish and self-obsorbed they belong together because with all the "concern" they share for their respective siblings, they care more about their own feelings above anyone else. Elena was like yo hows Jeremy and 5 seconds later - lets bang. Same for Damon - five seconds he is concerned about how Stefan took the news that Damon betrayed him - and then he is like lets bang. May they live selfishly ever after.

Redoktober

This show shits all over family bonds. Not one family relationship has remained untouched. Even Elena and Jer's relationship has suffered so much over the seasons. Stefan and Day Day are over (yet again) and the originals are as divided as ever. What exactly is this show promoting if not the strong bonds that a family should have? Oh yeah...i forgot....chasing the girl and screwing over your brother (whether it be Stef or Day). No morals whatsoever. How can the writers justify this kind of behaviour? But in all honesty, it would be so hypocritical of Plec to have one of them get the girl and have the brothers relationship still solid. They have placed each other under the bus too many times for it to be forgiven now. Its either neither get the girl or if one gets her then its only fair that the brothers distance themselves. After all is said and done i'm no longer a strong advocate for Defan. Too much has happened.

The Vampire Diaries Season 4 Episode 10 Quotes

Damon [to Jeremy]: I'm updated our relationship status to: It's Complicated.

April: You asked me to take notes:
Rebekah: I wasn't being literal, darling.

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