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The Vampire Diaries Review: Break On BOO to The Other Side!

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I've had enough of this ghost stuff to last forever.

Amen, Matty. Amen.

Consider this a warning, Vampire Diaries fans: I did not like "Ghost World" one bit. Take that as a backward compliment, perhaps, because I've come to expect so much from this typically tantalizing show. But this spirited invasion was nothing more than a random, confusing mess that pushed all our main characters off to the side in favor of dead folks we haven't thought about in ages.

Anna and Jeremy

I know, I know:

Lexi is tons of fun, Anna is adorable and sensitive and Mason is smoking hot (right, ladies?). I grant you all of that. But they had their time, they died in exciting, surprising ways and it was a major letdown for every emotional moment tonight to be centered around individuals who have played no role in the ongoing story.

My beef with the hour started at the very beginning. I can't be the only one who felt the show skipped a major scene, can I? One second Mason was torturing Damon, the next Damon was free and driving around in a convertible. I want my ghosts to go bump in the night, not to provide us with such bumpy transitions.

Let's move on to the class taught by Lexi: Ripper Detox 101. Huh?!? Where did she suddenly get some sort of extra strong compulsion ability? Is there a Master's Program taught on The Other Side? Paul Wesley deserves gobs of praise for his portrayal of a pained, peeved Stefan throughout these scenes (I will rip you apart, Lexi!!!), but this just came across like a contrived solution. Which is my one major problem overall on season three.

There's been a lack of flow. There's been too much exposition and not enough well-paced build-up. Characters are simply telling other characters about something that seemingly came out of nowhere (Anna explained last week her convoluted connection to Mikael, Mason just showed up here and - voila! - presented Damon with some family secret about how to kill an Original).

It feels like our favorite players are just pawns in some supernatural drama. I want to see them taking control of their own fate, making decisions based on what we've seen and learned about them over the years... not just going along with whatever plan is dropped on them each week.

And then there's Bonnie. I'm pretty sure she speaks more witch jibberish than English these days. Seriously, is she ever not casting spells?!? Her sole purposes for awhile now is to show up, read her grimoire and utter some nonsense that may or may not save the day. Consider: Damon doesn't drink blood all the time. Tyler isn't perpetually howling. These characters grew into well-rounded, interesting people when time was spent with them outside of their supernatural abilities.

I know I should be encouraging teens to read as much as possible, but come on Bonnie: put down the book and chill. Try smiling even.

Finally, I can't help but wonder: will the gruesome murder of a founding family member, in front of the entire town, be addressed after this week? Especially when it was presumably followed by ghosts running wild - and then vanishing - around Mystic Falls? The blood and gore and violence on this show are most often kept secret from residents, but will questions about what the heck is going on now permeate every meal at The Grill, as they really should? Or, as I fear, will the public murder just be dropped from storylines?

This is a small town that takes its traditions seriously, and a prominent citizen was just strung up from a tree. I'm just saying. That really should come up again in the very near future.

So let me have it, VD lovers. You won't find a bigger fan of this show than yours truly, but that doesn't mean I'm blind to its problems or can't point out when an episode really lets me down.

In this case, when nothing was really accomplished in the grand storytelling scheme - save for Alaric's concluding discovery, which will serve as an introduction to next week's Original flashback episode - it somehow seemed appropriate that the final exchange between Damon and Alaric went as follows:

What is it?
I have no idea.

Review

Editor Rating: 2.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.0 / 5.0 (504 Votes)

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

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I thought this was a pretty good episode and I loved seeing the Stefan/Elena/Alaric dynamics as well as the Mason/Damon dynamics. I was glad to see Damon acting like his usual self. It was fun. I know some people solely watch the show for Delena, but this episode is proof that you don't need to have those two together for the show to be good. I don't get the reviewer's hate for Bonnie. The girl could save an entire village and you'd still find something bad to say out of her. You certainly have a right to be biased and dislike certain people, but the Bonnie dislike jsut seems a little extreme, especially for a character that is pretty selfless, compared to the others. I thought she was terrific in this episode and I love her and Caroline's friendship. I also get that Jeremy has loved ones that he has lost, but so does Bonnie. If he's showing interest in someone else, then Bonnie had every right to dump him. Based on how he's treated her, she'd be a fool to stay with him. I was also really happy to see Lexi and wish she (and Mason) could have been around for some more episodes. I found the scene with Anna and Pearl very touching. However, I don't think I can watch too many more Anna scenes, especially if it means having to watch the forced interactions between her and Jeremy. I must be watching a different show, but I've always found these two to have one of the worst chemistries. Anna's constant whining and pleading and Jeremy's stiffly delivered declarations of love to her were just difficult to watch. And just like in prior seasons, we usually find out that she is just using Jeremy. Last season, I thought Bonnie and Jeremy were pretty hot together in the beginning (not anymore, but I blame the writers), and I always thought Jeremy was more into Vickie than Anna.

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I too agreed that it was somewhat confusing, on who was their to either support or get revenge on and that was a lot of pass characters missing is this plot like Jenna. I also like others hear will be glad when they get back to focusing on the main characters, whom all especially Damon are much better looking than Edward in Twilight and I think the TV show is 100 times better than Twilight, especially when you don't have to wait at least a year to find out want happens next.

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I enjoyed this.episode of TVD. Even though i wasn't a big fan of all the focus on the ghost storyline, I did think it did served a purpase. It tied a lot of loose ends and also helped chatacters move on and grow, which is something tvd do well. All the characters are so different from the way they were in season one, not like in other shows where characters get lost completey or stay the same for 4 seasons (like in gossip girl). Thats why tvd is so good. I think not having Rebecca and Tyler in this episode made it feel like something was really missing, their characters have really made an impact in a good way :) loved seeing Lexsi and the friendship between Alaric and damon.
Looking forward to all the original drama in next weeks episode :)

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Ratings for the show has been down for weeks and in fact ratings were down during the very heavy ass episode 2 DE episodes so to blame it on SE is just fucking dumb maybe if the writers stop shoving shitty triangles and actually build legit relationships people wouldn't be annoyed. And I am sorry... in season 2 Stefan got pushed to secondary character in favor of Damon. It is now Paul Wesley turn to shine. There was too much Damon last season that hindered other characters and the character itself because despite Damon being there all the effing time there was no character growth he is still a lost lovesick whiny puppy in my opinion and in a way this season Caroline is being used way too much now and they need to learn how to write a legit ensemble show like they claim to be and last night's episode has been their first legit ensemble episode (while get Tyler was not there, there was more than enough characters in my opinion to make up for it and frankly I don't like when characters just there to just be there which in my opinion the show does this way too much) since season 1 finale.

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hey people what's going on with you??? i mean it was a gret episode. i understand you didnt like it but before insulting the way it was made think of it: could you make a better episode? you dont have the right to make comentaries about something if you cant make it better....comment if you think you are good enough to make such a good serial.......... Anyway it was very good the episode...i liked that lexi came back..i really like her........Cant wait for the next episode and for the return of klaus...

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I love lexi they should bring her back and she should'nt have been killed off like that.Stefan should breakthrough I will miss ripper stefan but I miss good old stefan more.Q?Where was aunt jenna?Ric should have seen her say their goodbyes,wish she's back too.

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You know, sometimes a story doesn't have to keep going and going. I really enjoyed this episode. It's kind of like a breather for the next few crazy episodes to come. Seeing Lexi again was so damn good. A few minutes and she just won my heart all over again. I think the emotional scenes that happened this episode was pretty important too because it builds the foundation for the rest of the series to come, so don't look down on an episode which is not so action packed and exciting as the rest. It was proper closure for a lot of things that happen on TVD for me and I think that viewers need to see that, to see characters that have changed and grown even when they're dead and to understand them better. Only with proper closure can people move on. I thought it was beautifully written, with the right amount of nostalgia. My only peeve was that we didn't get to see Jenna.. >:( Anyway, I'm so excited for next week too!! Back to the craziness, I need to prepare myself mentally again. Really can't wait to see the flashbacks. I know I'll love it.

Dairtoharmony

Overall, this episode was okay. I like how the ghosts came and helped; Mason, Shelia. But my favourite was Lexi. She is awesome! Jeremy and Anna were getting on my nerves and I loved the Dalaric bromance. Stefan getting tortured was interesting too. I'm just looking forward to the next ep.

Jess-gannon

This episode was pretty weak but I think it was necessary now everyone has let go of there baggage. I JUST CAN'T WAIT FOR NEXT WEEK'S ORIGINAL VAMPIRE EPISODE!!!!

Matt-richenthal

@rel: I know the show extremely well, thank you, and am confident saying this was NOTHING like Damon getting inside Rose's head. Lexi performance some kind of all-out blood-letting curse. She controlled his body and his mind.
Damon simply saw Rose's thoughts.

The Vampire Diaries Season 3 Episode 7 Quotes

Elena: That's what they call it?
Jeremy: That's what Anna calls it. There's not an official brochure or anything.

Greetings, blondie. Witchie.

Damon

The Vampire Diaries Season 3 Episode 7 Music

  Song Artist
Changing-1 Changing The Airborne Toxic Event iTunes
Song Hitchhiker Empires
Come-on-come-on Come On, Come On Michael Johns and The Ontic iTunes
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