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The Vampire Diaries Review: Compulsive Behavior

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On your marks... get set... CURE!

The Vampire Diaries finally returned after a lengthy hiatus this week, airing an "After School Special" that featured the return of Rebekah, harsh truth from Elena, a transformation for Tyler, sides being chosen in a race for the elusive elixir and, unfortunately, a rather lame writing crutch to get everyone there.

Who knew compulsion could make everything so easy?

Questions for Stefan

It was a pleasure to see Claire Holt back in my living room (or as close as she'll ever get to my living room... damn), as Rebekah can always be relied on to bring the perfect combination of pain and pity, revenge and bitterness.

She lashes out because she's lonely, she turns her sorrow into rage. Can you blame her? Considering all she's been through with Klaus as a brother?

Rebekah is a terrific character, but simply locking everyone in the library and forcing the truth out of them was far from a terrific move for the show. Didn't we learn in Writing 101 to show and not tell? It doesn't make for mesmerizing television to have characters sitting around a table, reciting dialogue to move the story forward.

Not to mention how this just adds another chink in the paper thin armor of that whole sire bond thing. Why didn't Damon just have Klaus compel Elena before? If there's a way for her to be forced to come clean about her feelings... why didn't that come up before?

When we left The Vampire Diaries Season 4 in December, Damon ordered Elena away. Fast forward fewer than one episode and now she's certain that she loves him and that's enough for him to invite her back to the cabin for some naked bedroom action (if you know what I mean!). Please, pretty, pretty please with sugar and Bonnie's magic salt on top - can we be done now?

Can Elena and Damon just be together without all this contrived back-and-forth?

Of course, the main takeaway here is that Stefan now knows the truth. But he won't accept the truth. That's why he wants to team up with Rebekah and find that cure in order to turn Elena human again and find out - no, really, truly, seriously find out! - if she's in love with Damon. No wonder Elena feels like a "broken toy," a sad/apt description for how Stefan has been looking at her.

I feel the guy's pain, but it's rather clear at this point: she loves Damon. Move on, Stef. May I recommend the gorgeous blonde blood-sucker standing right in front of you?

Out in the woods, meanwhile... it's AWESOME! Jeremy is jacked, Klaus is turning humans into vampire prey, Matt is wearing a varsity letter jacket. We need to dedicate a lot more time to this storyline (enter The Vampire Diaries promo for next week's episode. Yes!). I'm all in on Jeremy and his mark and Klaus' being a total bad ass and double pepperoni pizza and the idea that some immortal dude named Silas can raise the dead.

This is fun Vampire Diaries lore and mythology, a lot more fun than Elena's oscillating, supposedly sired feelings.

Finally, in the Totally and Completely Random News Department:

  • Bonnie's father has been elected temporary Mayor, even though he's never actually around and has been referenced about three times in four seasons.
  • Kol is back!
  • April is ping-ponging back and forth from Rebekah's secretary to Bonnie's partner in witch crime to town tattle tale. Sorry, Katherine, you're no longer the show's most obvious plot device.

So, yes, The Vampire Diaries is back, but so are some of the problems that have plagued its past few episodes. Still, I maintain hope!

Team Stelena vs. Team Delena has been replaced with Team Rebekah/Stefan vs. Team Klaus/Damon vs. Team Shane/Bonnie. Who will get to the cure first? What will that squad do with it at that time? And who are YOU rooting for, TVD Fanatics?

Review

Editor Rating: 3.2 / 5.0
  • 3.2 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (1376 Votes)

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

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When will the originals die??? And i mean really die??? Talk about overstaying your welcome. We need new villains. enough already.

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I agree with the characters sitting around a table and the writers being very lazy about it, but Becks does seem like a character that would do such a thing and especially her pay back against STefan more then sold me on the whole fiasco. But April went from potentially interesting to awkward again. Ep was still great even with this glaring problem and all Damon/Matt/Jeremy/Klaus scenes were really damn good. Especially Jeremy calling out Damon on his BS moral Agenda. the writers are becoming worst and worst but there's really nothing we can do but just have hope. Elena is a damaged character who's whole life revolves around the salvatores, its pain to watch sometimes and now they crippled her with the sire bond. Ugghhhhh. And now the silas reveal with Kol knowing he exist, talk about recycling tricks and trades(Katherine via michael.) And Bonnie getting a random Dada to play such a pivotal point, really????? These writers are slowly crippling TVD and it hurts cause im TVD's most loyal fan. Atleast the writers were smart enough to let the audience know Rudy Hopkins wasnt the first choice for Mayor!! 8.5 episode. But there's always something wrong with an episode from so many different angles, its either the writers being lazy, of character induce stupidity or character assassination or plot armor or big glaring plot devices, and now Kol is a big walking Plot devices. Love TVD but the writers need Kevin williamson to come back and save the show.

Danielle50

I am definetly team Stebekah. April was annoying this episode and the best character for this episode goes to Rebekah. Why didn't they just tell Klaus that Jeremy mark is now shown so he can finally go get the cure even though my first sentence says who I am rooting for.

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I agree with your rating, Matt. Damon is only interesting person in this show, and his relationship with Elena is the only reason I continue to watch it. Everything else is just boring, including Rebekkah's weak storyline -- I wish they would just get rid of her, or at the very least give her to useless Matt. This whole cure thing with the professor is really contrived. As for April -- I'm not sure what her purpose is on the show. The writing is lazy, unoriginal and uninspiring. Klaus used to be a great character, but even him they managed to destroy.

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Well said. Elena does truly love Damon, and whoever can't see it must be blinded by Stefan's so called "Selfless" actions. If he were selfless, would he not just let Elena and Damon be happy for once.

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I wish they would just kill off the originals already. They definitely over stayed their welcome. Rebekah is so annoying!!! I wish she stayed staked.