Saturday, 20 October 2012

The Vampire Diaries Review: Memorial

Spoilers for the episode below!

So with a complete lack of time to spar my reviews of The Vampire Diaries stopped mid season three and I never really got the energy to go back and catch up. But now season 4 has started and it is just so good that I want to talk about incessantly to everyone. But that could get a little bit long and boring so I’m going to talk about my top five favourite moments/scenes/elements of the episode and then point you in the direction of some of my favourite (more thorough) recaps to tide you over until next week.

So the premier was pretty epic, it really laid the groundwork for a fantastic new season. I love that four seasons in Vampire Diaries effectively comes in, throws down, and says ‘this is how it’s done.’ There are no half measures here, and the show is just as engaging and funny and swoon worthy as it was all the way back in season one. But my only problem with the premier lacked some of the punch I’d hoped for because we all knew that Elena was going to turn, so some of the drama and tension was removed. However it was still a really strong opening, and laid plenty of ground work for this, episode two, and up there as one of my favourite Vampire Diaries episodes ever.

Ok in at number five is all the bloody vomit. And by bloody vomit I mean the plot line that Elena can’t keep anything down. Yes it was gross, but it certainly made everything a hell of a lot more tense about her transition than I felt last week. I love that we got to see her literally try everything before tapping a vein, and I loved that we got to see Elena really start to lose it and fall apart, something that the cool, calm and compassionate protagonist rarely seems to do on this show. I really, really hope that we get to see more of this side of Elena. I want to see her lose it, to see her maybe put a toe on a darker path, and see how she evolves and develops, it would make some fascinating storytelling. I also love that Matt was her first real feed, and how that came about. Although when did she learn how to be such a neat eater?! Their connection is something else that I want to see explored more this series, whether it’s romantically or platonically, I have always loved the scenes between Elena and Matt, and I think after the events of the finale the dynamic has shifted so much that it’s going to make their relationship even more intriguing to watch unfold.

Number four has to be Connor, who is terrifying and brilliant. Seriously, this guy likes to get stuff done, and he is a much more focused Hunter than we’ve seen before. He’s mean, terrifying, utterly ruthless (I actually gasped when he stabbed April) and brilliant. He’s certainly upped the stakes on what we can hope for in the current big bad, and he definitely is coming across as a lot scarier than some of the other big bads that we’ve seen on this show. I cannot wait for his plot line to unfurl and see how Jeremy factors into this. He’s scary, he’s brilliant, and he has bad ass bullets and gloves, I love him already.

I can’t help it, but number three is that scene between Elena and Damon, yes you know the one. No not the one where he’s being very sweet with her outside the church (although seriously, very cute.) The one in the bathroom of the Mystic Grill (which sees almost as much action as the Gilbert front porch.) Through little spoilers I knew that Elena was going to drink Damon’s blood, but that still didn’t prepare me for the onslaught of sexy that Dobrev and Somerhalder bring to this scene. Their chemistry is just through the roof. Yes ok Damon knew more about what ‘personal’ meant, but I think Elena had a pretty good idea too given the way she was writhing against him throughout, so she can’t really pull the entirely innocent card at Stefan later on.
Really it all comes down to the look on Damon’s face throughout, which just made the scene feel incredibly hot and sexy and intimate and I felt like a bit of a perv for watching it, but at the same time, yes, just yes.

At number two is the scene in the church which had so many elements combined to make me shriek like a crazy person.
I loved that we got the cast working together on a scene, we so rarely get everyone in one scene that it really made it a fantastic ensemble scene where we got the majority of our cast working together in this awful situation, and everyone was involved in one way or another. Which leads me into one of my big loves of this scene, vampire hearing. Yes I know, we know they can hear things that other people shouldn’t and we frequently get demonstrations of this in solitary moments where say, Caroline hears Finn talking across the square, but never have we gotten to see the characters using it to have a full on conversation together whilst at separate points across the room. I loved the initial moment where they all smell the blood and we have Elena up on stage and Tyler and Caroline freaking out on one side of the church and Stefan and Damon on the other side. I loved that the conflict included all of them even though it was specifically Elena losing the plot, and the shots of each of them reacting to moments like Elena feeding for the first time and Matt offering himself up as a tasty snack were just so brilliantly played. I also loved the choice of music, to have a hymn playing to disguise the conversation and the way the music swelled when Elena finally bit Matt – I got tingles, not gonna lie. It drew out the ensemble element and really made this scene stand out for me, all the elements came together to create a brilliant, high stakes and high tension scene that will go down as one of my favourites.

Number one has to go to that beautiful closing scene. I’m so glad that they finally took a step back and acknowledged the sheer number of friends and family that these characters have lost over the course of three series’ – I mean seriously, that body count is insane, and it was so nice to take a beat and remember them, all the way back to Uncle Zach. I was already starting to well up with the lantern lighting and acknowledgement of all the people they’ve lost, and there was a bit of me that was really sad that Damon ran off and refused to play, so I loved that they then showed Damon doing his own version of this with Alaric. The whole scene was just pitched so beautifully with him sat drinking at Alaric’s grave and talking about how they’re all children and he’s there because he knows that Ric would want him to help look after them and protect them, and then the camera pans out and… I cried, like a small child.
It was just so beautiful and poignant and perfect, and such a fitting tribute/goodbye to one of my favourite relationships on this show. Ric’s original goodbye in ‘Do Not Go Gentle’ packed a similar emotional punch (and dissolved me into similar amounts of tears) and I was ready to say goodbye to him after that. But then we had him turn into this big bad scary (which was fantastic) and I loved seeing that. But then he was gone and it felt like we didn’t really get that goodbye between him and Damon. So to have Damon grieving and missing him, and for his ghost to be sat there listening and grieving and missing him right back, was just so perfect there almost aren’t words. It all summed up so brilliantly with the only words Ric speaks throughout the entire scene “I miss you too buddy.” At which point the fandom as one, cried like small children. 

So those are my five favourites of the episode, what are yours? And what are you most excited about going into this season? In the mean time whilst we wait for next Thursday to roll around check out two of my favourite reviewers, Postcards from Mystic Falls by Price Peterson and Carina over at Zap2it


  1. Love love love Vampire Diaries!!!! So awesome!!!!
    I have to say the best part of that episode for me was when Damon went to visit Alaric's grave and Ric told him he missed him. I am so sad that he left the show, I'm kind of hoping they bring him back. I also thought how Tyler got shot so they could find the shooter (Connor). I really enjoyed this episode with the lanterns, I thought it was great and very inspirational. Great review of this past weeks episode I am dying to see next week and can't wait to find out why Jeremy can see Connors tattoo's.

    1. Aw yes, I loved Tyler's speech about being part of a team and how that played out, it really showed how much he's grown since season 1! Definitely one of the most moving ends to an episode though with Ric. Thanks for reading and commenting :)