The Vampire Diaries Review: The Nick of Time

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I'm not sure who I feel worse for after watching "The End of the Affair." Elena, Caroline or Klaus?

Okay, it's definitely Elena. The man she loves and would chase to the end of the world has told her to leave him alone; her mere existence is all that stands between relative peace and an army of Hybrids; and viewers even learned that the only reason Stefan fell for her may have been because he was forced to forget the woman who could truly be his soulmate.

Still, we learned a lot about Klaus this week and the intel painted a picture of a tortured, lonely, scared Original who hasn't been killing merely for the sake of killing.

Stefan in Chicago

Klaus is petrified. He's been on the run for centuries. He's been under orders to create Hybrids and I'm guessing it's not for his own personal army. Does that excuse all of his murderous behavior? Of course not. But let's remember the state Damon was in when we first met him. And the past of Stefan that gets unraveled every week.

There's always context to even the most evil of actions and Klaus' appears to be centered around the mysterious man who showed up for a few seconds near the end of this episode, asking after Stefan's forgotten friends. Is he a vampire? Maybe. A werewolf... such as Klaus' biological father? I say yes.

One thing is for certain: Sebastian Roche (Supernatural, Fringe) is an actor familiar with the non-human.

I also take issue with how the show keeps upping the bad guy ante. There was Katherine... and then Klaus... and then now random new guy. Granted, each villain has brought with him or her a different angle; and we need new blood to keep spinning the story in various directions. But it's a bit irritating to continually learn that there's always someone else out there. Nothing ever gets resolved as much as the plot in general gets altered.

Have we finally met the true string puller? I doubt it.

Ripper Road Trip Pic

Let's return to Katherine for a moment: perpetual props to Nina Dobrev for expertly pulling off such contrasting characters, but I'm sick of this one. She's become more of a plot device than an actual person, showing up from time to to time because she serves the purpose of writers in some way. That was never more evident than it was here, as she randomly called Damon with full knowledge of Stefan's whereabouts just because... she's made a lot of contacts over the years? That's pretty thin, Vampire Diaries.

Figure out a direction for Katherine or kill her for good.

Those small frustrations aside, the flashbacks were as fun and engrossing as ever and they culminated in a fascinating new trio. Stefan remembers! Throughout the first few episodes of the season, it was difficult to believe he had returned to his full-on Ripper ways or truly wanted to be a sidekick to Klaus. But with these memories flowing through him now, with the knowledge that he really was close to Klaus and in love with Rebecca, we may truly see a different side to Stefan. His loyalties aren't so clear anymore.

Hence my original sympathy for Elena and hence my one-word reaction to this development: GULP.

Elsewhere, there's not really much to say about the Caroline storyline. It sucks that her father is anti-vampire and it's great that her mother has done a 180 on the subject. It's also nice to see her and Tyler grow so close. I'm assuming Liz's actions will cause a serious divide within the council, but that's for another day. For now, the focus was so squarely on Chicago that this B story felt almost like a Z story. It was rushed through, which is a shame considering it was actually the cliffhanger from a week ago.

Closing thoughts:

  • Have we ever gone an episode without seeing Elena waking up?
  • You want a partner in crime? Forget Stefan. I'm so much more fun. One of my favorite Damon lines in awhile, considering he said when he was near death.
  • When I'm done with him, he won't wanna go back. Seriously, what is Klaus' plan for Stefan?!?
  • I'd watch an entire series based around Klaus and Stefan's life in the 1920s. Call it The Real House-Originals of Chicago.
  • Check out the official CW promo for next week's episode HERE!


Editor Rating: 4.0 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.8 / 5.0 (327 Votes)

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


I've just had a thought about the whole 'sacrifice' storyline. Klaus needed Elena's blood to break the curse, and now we find out that he still needs her blood to create the hybrids. So he needs her alive to be his 'human bloodbag'. What would happen if Elena were to fall ill, ill enough to affect her blood, maybe through infection, medication etc, would that affect Klaus' plans, would that affect any werewolf who drinks her blood? Of course that would make Elena seem more of a victim than she actually is. It would be great to have seen a spanner in the works like that last season, Elijah was too much in control of everything. How would he have dealt with facing up to the fact that although the doppelganger, ie Elena is created by supernatural forces, she is, at the end of the day, still human and has to face human obstacles in life like illnesses. It would be nice for him, and Klaus for that matter, to face the fact that although they could be considered vampire royalty, neither they nor the witches (who created the curse in the first place) can control life or what it chooses to throw in their way.


I agree with Kim I want to get things back to the old. Stefan may again drink animal blood, Katharine provokes Stefana and Elenu.And all takes place in Mystic Fallsu.This with the originals really sucks, the plot of the book is loooong Better.And rapprochement between Damon and Elena is boring.Thing called: Bad Stefan is really stupid. Stefan-Elena
Caroline (May elect, Matt and Tyler)
and Rebecca Klaus let nose.And Damon can with them. Katharine-Damon
To me,it sounds like a good choice :)


2 things..where did you get that Klaus is being ordered to make the hybrid army? Also, have werewolves been established as immortal on here? How could he be Klaus real father and still living 1000 of centuries later?

David and sabrina 2014

This episode was concluded another 3 rating. Things may have gone crazy for Stefan's past when he was friends with Klaus and his siter Rebecca, but I both want them to be gone already. They're messing with Stefan's mind and it's got to stop. Damon may not be able to stop Klaus cause now he's acting like the regular Stefan from before and well, of course Stefan is controlled to act like Damon's old self. What's very mysterious is that necklace that Elena got from Stefan actually belonged to Rebecca before time. Now that Klaus brought her back, she gets all pissed off over the necklace and it's just very annoying. It was awful to see that Stefan broke Elena's heart by yelling to her that he's never coming home. The problem that's making him act like this is Klaus compelling him and he has got to go with his sister. The next episode is going to go nuts and insane that could turn season 3 to a wild turn of events. =O =( =P


My romantic side wants to believe Katherine's trailing Stefan because she loves him and she sees her chance to seduce him without Elena in the picture and I do so hope that happens. As I have said before in posts, I find this couple much more interesting than Stefan and Elena. The writers, however, might ruin this tantalizing storyline by giving Katherine another ulterior motive for following him because they can't resist adding 5000 layers to the already seemingly infinite amount of movtives that are frankly beginning to clog up this show. I think Klaus as the biggest baddest guy is sufficient, he's getting more interesting. Another potential couple is Stefan and Caroline because I'm not crazy about Tyler with her. I loved the way Caroline made Stefan laugh when he was sort of grooming her as a new vampire. With Elena he's more doom and gloom and fighting his badness to be perfect for her. Characters that I'm quickly losing interest in are Jeremy, Matt and Bonnie. I have not missed Bonnie if that tells you anything. But I think this is due in part to the actress, not sure of her name, being not that great an actress. Her acting is shaky and you know it. Jeremy and Matt aren't that great either, I don't care if Steven McQueen is the grandson of Steve McQueen, he doesn't have it so far. Well I'm just getting bitchy, sorry about this book.


Something on Katherine I cant understand... I Just see this weird that she was running from Klaus during all this time... but still, she was around Chicago same time Klaus was there In Season 2,Klaus was described as the biggest baddest Vampire of all time, a legend, an original that was THE only one and true villain,HEP!!! we hear there's a guy out there who's after him... making him 'baddestest' Villain. There's always a biggest baddest bigger than the biggest baddest. Just hope its not an infinite chain.


Well, i also think that Stefan is still in love with Elena and that he`ll always wants to protect her. That`s not the point. And i know Damon always does.
The point ist even that vampires looks like us humans, they aren`t.
A lion and cat could love each other, but where is the room they can live.
That`s more than the everlasting question Stefan+Elena or Damon+Elena.
In the dumb book was a nice way to make a love between this triangle become real.
With witchcraft became Damon his humanity back. In the book he`s not a vampire any longer, and even that he hates this in the books, we all know that in the second season he admits that to be human again is his deepest wish.
Maybe the show could go there in the end? Just a thought of myself.

Anna maria

I prefer evil stefan to nice stefan a billion times! and I think he should end up with klaus's sister not elena! they;re wayy more interesting!


@lilouuh,i like ur post,elena doesn't undstnd wat it means to be a vampire,if she stil loves stefan and wants to be wit him she's to take his both side and stop tinking dat he's just gud,I'm nt trying to defend stef here bt he's gud and at the same time bad coz he's a vampire,i dnt also believe it's over btw stelena,he's just trying to protect her,i tink he's just keeping his words wen he said he'l always protect her and he'l do wat ever he can to make sure she lives her life.The guy luvs her so much,there is nothing he can do,he just hv to let her go 4 nw.


Well, i watched this episode twice, because i think in many ways are the passing 42minutes the best i`d ever watched in TVD.
Best scene was when Stefan told Elena that it`s done.
Not because i want them both to break up. No, because what he said is real.
How can they both get back to a normal live? Or better, was there in any time before the possibility for them both to have a normal live?
Elena don`t want to be a vampire. That is one of the reasons i adore her. She wants to grow old, have kids, and such things. How long could the love to a vampire works. That`s the question that goes in both direction. Damon`s or Stefan`s.
They both love a woman, which could only be a tiny sparkling in a neverending live. And vampires are not like humans. They forgive each other easier that humans will do, maybe because they must spend eternity together.
Well, Damon kill Lexie and he tortured his brother over a century. But Stefan forgive him, and besides he still love his brother. And on the otherside it´`s the same with Damon. And let`s figure their both relationship to their maker katherine. Even in their darkest hours they both still care about kathering. because he turned him and because Stefan was mainly the reason that Katherine I think Stefan maybe realize, that he cam only save her, when he`s not around.
I think the writers should be carefull what they make with all this potential the show got.
Elena must make some steaps foreward to stay as a realistic character in this show. She couldn`t just be around and confirm her undying love for Stefan or maybe Damon without making some decisions for her live.
Either she must turn into a vampire or there are only a few good years.
And she have to accept that a vampire will ever be a kind of a predator. To love somebody means, to accept the person you love with all bad and good sides. And even that i want Damon and Elena together (because they are more fun to watch), if she will end up with Stefan, she couldn`t assume that he`s the sweet innocent guy with holy light around his head.
A part of him will ever be a predator. Love..
Damon..great the things he said in his own funny-sexy-Damon-way.
Stefan, Niklaus and Rebecca together...awesome...
Stefan when he founds Elena in his closet..
The flashbacks were awesome..
Katherine..Nina Dobrev is so much fun to wath as her own bitchy double..
(hope the writer will create more story for Miss Petrova)

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The Vampire Diaries Season 3 Episode 3 Quotes

You know you were dreaming about me.

Damon [to Elena]

Bringing back memories of the good old Ripper days?