The Vampire Diaries Review: O Holy Fright

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As we head toward the Christmas season, it's safe to say The Vampire Diaries is in a major holi-daze at the moment.

What had been a promising start to Season 4 - with Elena learning to transition successfully, her bond with Damon growing stronger by the day, a menacing hunter in town and even a strong storyline for Jeremy - has devolved over the past three weeks.

It all came to a confounding head in "O Come, All Ye Faithful," as Damon set Elena free and Klaus went all Emily Thorne on his former sired protege, killing Tyler's mom out of revenge.

Tyler v. Hayley

Let's start with this illogical, contrived sire nonsense.

Damon can only free Elena from the spell by essentially compelling her to stay away from him... but that doesn't actually free her from the spell. She's forced to obey because she still is sired to him. So the move creates nothing but physical distance between the pair, with the feelings remaining intact. Because it's also been explained by Tyler that being sired to someone has nothing to do with one's feelings for that person.

So... we have two options, right?

  1. Elena remains close to Damon, sired, and the two carry on a relationship based on legitimate feelings. The only caveat would be that Elena listens to whatever Damon says.
  2. Damon orders Elena to stay away, which means only that: she stays away, but both yearn to be with each other.

Why, again, must Damon choose option number-two? How, exactly, is that doing the "right thing" by Elena? And why on earth was any of this trumped up, aside to drag out the love triangle further and further and further?

I'm confused, and - far worse - I really don't care about any of it.

On to Tyler's elaborate plan: He wanted to bury Klaus inside of him and then bury himself inside of concrete (temporarily, somehow) in order for the unsired hybrids to disappear. But I must be missing something here... because can't the unsired hybrids just disappear anyway?

Tyler is a hybrid and he's been free from Klaus for ages now and the two have nothing to do with each other. What was stopping those other creatures from just saying sayonara to their creator? Fear of Klaus killing them for such a transgression? He didn't kill Tyler.

This plan only grew more elaborate when Rebekah's body was brought up, which led to Hayley's secret text messages to Shane, which may have been more intriguing if we knew anything at all about Hayley. I never thought I'd diss a character played by Phoebe Tonkin, but she's pretty much just been Tyler's wing-woman this entire time (conjuring up pretend witches for the audience and her supposed friend).

I don't feel like I know her or are invested in her storyline simply because she's seeking her birth parents.

Similarly, Tyler's actions regarding the hybrids seemed noble and all, but it would have been helpful if we have known any of them. Or if we had spent awhile delving a lot deeper into Tyler's sense of responsibility for their well-being. Instead, his Alpha status and the whole set-up felt rushed together and unnecessary.

Which is too bad because Mayor Lockwood paid the ultimate price.

Talk of a death to close out the episode has been all over the Internet, and it was easy to predict she would be the victim once she shared that heart-to-heart with her son. Am I glad Klaus is back to his killing ways? Am I curious to see the fallout from this vengeful act and how the Tyler vs. Klaus war will be waged? Absolutely.

But it was a winding, confusing mess that took us there.

I'll end this negative review on a few positive note, however:

  • Rebekah is coming back! Hooray!
  • It would have been more appropriate if the episode aired yesterday, but this 12 (dead bodies in 1942), 12 (dead council members) and 12 (dead hybrids) angle - along with Shane's "We are the beginning from "We'll Always Have Bourbon Street" - is very interesting.
  • So is the concept that Jeremy must keep killing vampires in order to find the cure.

What did everyone else think of the outing? As you mourn Mayor Lockwood, sound off: has The Vampire Diaries lost its way a bit? Should Damon have let Elena go? What, precisely, are the duties of Miss Mystic Falls?


Editor Rating: 2.6 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.6 / 5.0 (1294 Votes)

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


Caroline and Stefan should go get married and have at least five little brats of their own. Hopefully, that would keep them busy and shut them up for a bit.


Ha ha I laugh when I read some of these comments. Guys are talking terrible about Caroline for telling (not really she didn't say anything) how Elena got with Damon the day after her and Stef broke up. Ok whats worse telling your friend another friends secrete or doing your ex boyfriends brother the day after you broke up. Hmmm lets see which is worse. Get your stuff straight people if you condemn one you condemn them all.


OK so its Jeremy's turn for a little split personality action, but before that, I think I've been reading way too much vampire diaries fanfiction, and i don't know if i've picked up any spoilers i would have been better off waiting for. Shane (or Professor Creepy) is turning into an Alaric replacement, or Elijah replacement, he talks about a witch killing a girl Silas loved, that sounds awfully like Esther spilling the blood of a girl both Klaus and Elijah loved (I hate it when shows throw story threads in and don't complete them, we still have yet to hear more about Tatia, and this season promised to reveal more about the spell that created vampires). Elena is happily in love with Damon for a grand total of two stories before he dumps her courtesy of the brand new judgies on the block Stefan and Caroline. It sounds as though the writers are really not sure whether or not they want Damon and Elena as a couple, yet, so they keep throwing them curve balls. Nina Dobrev herself said in an interview that she would not mind seeing Elena single for a while, and it would be nice to see her cope on her own for a while.
As heartbreaking as it is for Tyler to lose the very people he's been trying to free from Klaus, they weren't exactly heroes or martyrs or trying to do the right thing, in fact they put both Caroline and Elena in danger the previous week, so as gory as that scene was, so what? The only person you feel sorry for is Tyler, and he also has no clue that Hayley is working against him.
No wonder April is missing Rebekah, everyone else seems to have forgotten about her.
ps you know ill be back with more musings.

Allison berry barbieri

he'd kill the other hybrids? His murderous moment with the mayor was quite a shock, however, and it DID make 12. I thought the episode was confusing and raised more questions than it answered, and I'm extremely frustrated with the sire bond situation, but I still liked it and thought there were a lot of great "edge of your seat moments"..

Allison berry barbieri

I'm irritated with the Sire Bond thing with Delena because they have been told by Tyler that the sire bond has nothing to do with feelings and by that witch in New Orleans that feelings have to exist prior to vampire transition for it to happen. So, CLEARLY, the feelings are real but the sire bond is a complication. And, really, the bond isn't broken as Matt said..Elena is just doing what Damon wants because she is still sired to him. Makes no sense. I did like the episode but it raised some questions:
1. What is Professor Shadypants REALLY up to? Is he Silas or the witch best friend of Silas?
2. Is there really even a cure? (I kind of hope not)
3. What is with the sacrificing in 12s? Also, I love Joseph Morgan and think he is impeccable as Klaus. But I don't get how the leap was made that he would kill his hybrids for their deception, how the professor was so sure this would happen, and what it has to do with anything...I mean, he didn't kill Tyler, so why would we assume he'd kill the other hybrids. His murderous moment with the mayor was quite a shock, however, and it DID make 12. I thought the episode was confusing and raised more questions than it answered, and I'm extremely frustrated with the sire bond situation, but I still liked it and thought there were a lot of great "edge of your seat moments"..


I loved how they went to help Jeremy: it feels like they are one family ( I love how he's been always part of Jeremy's life). I loved Damon watching Elena enjoying a normal moment with her brother, her signals for him to come and share her those moments and be a part of it but sure he didn't 'cause he never felt like belonging there (he was always alone), the mistletoe moment, him telling her about his childhood. And the most heartbreaking moment is him telling her to go home and his wet eyes and broken voice telling her that's what makes him happy broke my heart into a little tiny pieces but even that I didn't want him to do that I think that it will be a good motive for Elena to try to convince him that she loves him for real and that kiss that she gave him before leaving was a proof and a message for him that he can controle her actions but not her feelings.


If I'm gonna go along with them and say that they're not better than Klaus and that they all did horrible things (which's not the case) then 1st they all tried to fix their fall downs whether they've succeded or not but they had the intention when he did had no intention, 2nd if they're such sympathisers why don't they try that with Damon I'm sure that with all his "bad brother glory" as they see him he did alot of good things that they don't want to admit and sure he didn't do as half as what Klaus did but sure Damon is the selfish, ruthless, irredeemable person who doesn't deserve anything specially not Elena while Klaus is a misunderstood person. Seriously!!!
5/ Damon & Elena: there's no words that can describe these 2. I loved the bed morning scene, how they've decided to stay together even if it meant that they won't be able to express their love in any significant way but they'll accept this situation 'cause it's their only/best option other than being apart.


3/ Jeremy/Elena relationship...It broke my heart seeing Jeremy saying that he hates Elena, that she's not his real sister, that he blames her and sees her the responsible one for him loosing every one he loves and that he will kill her even if it will means killing himself but then when they hugged that moment was an ointment for my wounded heart. I really want them to back to normal as they were.
4/ To me Stefan and Caroline have lost their mind completely: so aside from Stefan being obsessed with finding the cure to un-sire Elena from Damon (his main issue) without caring about anything else, Caroline taking Stefan's side instead of her boyfriend and Elena (her childhood friend), now they're sympathising with Klaus? He's misunderstood? She tried to remind herself of all his horrible things he did ? He feels guilty toward him? (When they can't find any problem remembering Damon's mistakes.)


I really love this episode it was full of emotions and actions.
1/ So finally Klaus' evil side came back to action, I knew that his nice side will fade away sooner or later but I didn't think for a second that he will be back this way (killing 12 un-sired hybrids in one night (within less an hour) ?!!! And Tyler's mother?!!! No words...) I don’t know what’s gonna happen between Tyler/Klaus but I’m sure it won't be any where near to good.
2/ Seriously this shady professor is killing me. What's wrong with him? What does he want? Ok he wants Silis, but why? And don't tell me it has something to do with his loss of his kid and wife 'cause I don't buy it. We learned in this episode that his plan about these 12 un-sired hybrids was to be killed by Klaus who he need for the ritual. Ok, WHAT RITUAL? I really don't trust him and I don't want him to be any way near Damon, Elena, Jeremy and Bonnie (wishful thinking I know).


1. Wow I am amazed at how I don't care about the Elena being sired to Damon business. *YAWN* That triangle needs new life. I mostly just feel bad for Stefan nowadays so I want to see more scenes of him with Klaus and with Caroline. 2. Klaroline. Granted that Klaus has always been evil, I still kinda hated Caroline in this episode for once again acting nice to Klaus to distract him. It's not her fault, though. I mean, she was on board the whole kill Klaus business because she has plenty of reason to think of him as evil. But come on, after episode 4x07, I thought it'd be a little bit harder on her to make that decision. 3. Jeremy as hunter = cool. Jeremy and Bonnie. oh, please, NO. 4. Klaus being all kill-y again. Hmmm... I love that he's so badass. But killing the mayor just solidifies the Tyler vs Klaus war and I'm already dreading how Caroline's gonna react to it against Klaus. Then again, she never thought of Klaus as anything else so nothing's gonna change exactly. Humpf.

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The Vampire Diaries Season 4 Episode 9 Quotes

What the Hell is Professor Shady Pants doing here?


This would be so much more fun if we were naked.

Damon [to Elena]

The Vampire Diaries Season 4 Episode 9 Music

  Song Artist
Song Covering Your Tracks Amy Stroup
Julian casablancas christmas treat Christmas Treat Julian Casablancas iTunes
Song Take You To The Mistletoe The Kicks