You got me, Vampire Diaries.
Following a few lackluster Season 4 episodes, you reeled me back in with "A View to A Kill" and, yes, you did it by bringing out the humanity in both Rebekah and Klaus. You did it via some very cool action sequences that resulted in the Gilberts taking out Kol. You did it by making me believe in Strebekah as a couple.
But, let's be honest: you mostly did it with your shout-out to Bon Jovi.
Unlike the rock anthem that helped turn Rebekah on to the 80s, this episode was all about wanting Kol dead... or dead. It was a mission shared by Elena, Jeremy, Matt, Stefan and even the Original's siblings.
Was the return of Kol random and unexplained? Yes, but not as random and unexplained as Bonnie's father having "sources" that can pump vervain into the town's water. But more importantly, it served an important purpose here: the hour felt coherent, it felt well-paced, it built to a fatal crescendo that heated up both Kol's body and the search for The Cure.
Everyone is now on the same team, really. They may want the elixir for different purposes, but that will simply serve to make it that much more interesting when they actually find it. For now, everyone and everything has been brought together.
There's a common purpose among our favorite Mystic Falls residents, as that concluding scene perfectly combined interpersonal relationships and conflicts (Damon vs. Stefan! Bonnie vs. her parents! Matt vs. the temptation to wear his varsity jacket!) with one over-arching storyline. High drama/suspense? Mixed with well-layered, intriguing character developments? Sounds like the recipe for what's made The Vampire Diaries so great over the years, doesn't it?
You might say that the closing few moments really hit the mark. Eh? Eh?!? Okay, perhaps only I might say that.
But what made the episode so delightful as it made it way up to the Jeremy shirt rip and the growing of the map?
- Joseph Morgan. Granted, I could write this every week. But the actor pulled off Klaus' vulnerability with a single look upon asking Damon what he says to Elena... and then went in the complete opposite direction when he flipped the eff out after witnessing Kol's death.
- Related to the first bullet point, but great exchanges between Damon and Klaus, the show's two bad boys who are sort of alike, except for this well-put difference, as uttered perfectly by Big D: You do bad things for no reason. You do them to be a dick… if you're gonna be bad, be bad with purpose.
- Lexi mention!
- And a Lexi mention that actually fit the situation perfectly. Same for Klaus taunting Damon with how Stefan resisted his compulsion in that gymnasium on The Vampire Diaries Season 3. Great use of callbacks on both accounts.
- Also a Katherine Pierce mention. Yes, this means she's coming back. Yes, my money is on her being behind that mystery team who sent some random dude into Shane's apartment last week.
Overall, a very well-written episode. Damon quasi bonded with Klaus, Stefan really bonded with Rebekah, Jeremy and Elena worked well together and even the return of Bonnie's mom made sense and brought some intrigue to that dysfunctional family.
Is Bonnie really a ticking time bomb? Can Shane be trusted to lead this giant team to the Cure? Will Silas really bring about the end of the world? Will we ever see Caroline and Tyler again? Are Stefan and Rebekah totally going steady now? You said it, Damon:
Here we go...