The Vampire Diaries Review: Garden of (Getting) Even

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Despite what you may have read on Twitter or been told in The CW promo for "Original Sin," the Ripper did not return to The Vampire Diaries tonight. Stefan managed to suppress his blood thirsty past self.

Instead, viewers were introduced to an entirely different kind of dangerous being: a crazy, controlling, paranoid, dream-implanting, spell-binding witch named Qetsiyah. And she was totally awesome.

Janina Gavankar as Tess

Janina Gavankar (always a TV Fanatic favorite) played this character as both vulnerable and violent, dangerous and deranged. She's not a villain. She's not a protagonist. She's simply a woman scorned... who happens to be a very powerful witch, meaning those that cross her don't end up with their faces cut out of photos.

They end up with their one true love's heart cut out of her body.

Qetsiyah was the driving force behind an episode that managed to be both very focused and very scattered. There was no Bonnie, no Jeremy, no Caroline and only sort of a trace of Matt (more on that below). The hour told just one story, but what a bat $hit crazy story it is....

  • Silas was in love with Amara, the first Petrova Doppelganger. He wanted the two of them to live forever, so he pretended to be in love with Qetsiyah in order for her to make them an immortality spell.
  • Then he stole it. He took it with Amara and Qetsiyah created The Cure in retaliation, which she fed to Amara in what we'll affectionately call The Garden of Getting Even.
  • She then tried to force Silas to take it, but he refused... so she locked him away for 2,000 years and watched from The Other Side (which she also created as a barrier for Silas), growing more and more frustrated when he was freed and The Hunters she sent after him failed to do their job.
  • When Bonnie lowered the veil, Qetsiyah escaped and set her sights on Stefan because she could use his mind to get inside Silas' and prevent him from compelling everyone and their grandmother.
  • Which she succeeded in doing this week... and here we are.

It's complicated stuff. All the exposition bogged down the episode a bit, especially when we're talking more doppelgangers, curses, witches, other sides, lowered veils, shadowed selves, mind compulsion and Travelers. Not exactly your everyday fare.

Yes, this is what often makes The Vampire Diaries so great, its total craziness and off-the-wall storytelling. But the momentum train (choo-choo, right, Damon?) is forced to slow down when viewers must hit rewind multiple times just to make sense of everything. So let's cut to the bottom line here:

Qetsiyah - sorry, not calling you Tessa, that's too simple a name for an admittedly complicated creature - is after Katherine to use her blood as The Cure than can finally kill Silas. And Silas is also after Katherine to purportedly drain her blood and rid the world of The Cure once and for all.

Oh, and the universe wants Stefan to end up with Elena. Or at least the doppelganger who looks like Stefan to end up with the doppelganger who looks like Elena. It's an interesting twist. It throws an interesting obstacle into the whole Delena 4 Eva thing.

Damon has taken on werewolves, hybrids, evil professors, mean uncles, angry hunters, blonde cheerleaders and Jeremy. The guy is good. He's tough and he's got charm that could even make Hayley on The Originals smile. But can he defeat destiny? And is destiny really working against him? Let's remember the source of that revelation here: Qetsiyah. She isn't exactly the most stable individual.

But while Qetsiyah was thoroughly entertaining, the destiny issue casts new questions over the show's perpetual love triangle and I appreciate the tight narrative at play here, I did have two major beefs with the installment:

  1. Enough with various characters taking on the personas of other characters already! It was a lazy storytelling crutch for Silas to constantly fool those around him on The Vampire Diaries Season 4 when he magically appeared as their friends or loved ones and it's a lazy storytelling crutch now to have Gregor inhabit Matt's body... especially because we know nothing about Gregor and Nadia. These Travelers have just been dropped in our laps and Katherine spoke for all of us when she screamed: Who are you and what do you want?!?
  2. The amnesia angle is dumb. Stupid. Ridiculous. Awful It's the most tiresome cliche in the soap opera world and it's rather depressing that The Vampire Diaries would actually resort to it here.

What did everyone else think? Where does "Original Sin" rank among craziest episodes in Vampire Diaries history? Are you buying this Damon vs. Destiny thing? Do you find the amnesia development and mind-numbingly lame as I do? Was Caroline off hooking up with Jesse while all this was going on?

And, seriously, how awesome is Qetsiyah?!


Editor Rating: 4.4 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.4 / 5.0 (472 Votes)

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

Sarah silva

So there really was no return of the Ripper!
Instead we have Stefan who after Qetsiyah did what she did, has no memory.
I really hope that he regains his memory by seasons end.
I did like hearing the Qetsiya, Silas and Amara storyline.
So Julie Plec was not kidding about the major storyline that Matt has this season! I am happy to see more of Matt but I do hope they can extract Gregor from his body sometime soon. I want to know why Matt was in the Lockwood mansion with mud on his boots.
So now we know why Silas needs Katherine. It makes total sense and I am sure some people knew he needed her for her blood, but I did not.
We all know Elena and Stefan are soul mates, however I have a feeling that Elena will go against that and say with Damon. We will see.


This episode was awesome! Elena and Stefan are destined to be together forever!!! That is so great and Destiny will definitely win over Damon for sure. Cannot wait to see Stefan and Elena back together and in love! I guess it might be good that Stefan doesn't remember much at this point because it would be way too hard for him to see his brother with the girl he loves so much. This way they can fall in love all over again!


Glad Im not the only one thinking Nadia is Katherine's long lost daughter. I'm not a big fan of the whole memory lost thing but i'll wait to see how it plays out.


Also it was rather clear that Qetsiyah lied and she didn't actually kill Amara. Think about it: there was no body seen, and as everyone knows, on TV an unseen corpse isn't a corpse at all. If Amara was dead, there would be no need for doppelgängers anymore. Not to mention, that the doppelgängers run in the family, so Amara must've had a child - presumably after the whole Qetsiyah drama. I still don't know how Tatia plays into all of this (or if Julie Plec will ever reveal anything about her again) but I'm dying to know.


I absolutly loved Tessa.
The doppelgangers storyline has a lot of fails. This destiny crap doesn't make sense, why isn't Stefan still in love with Katherine?
And so we have Elena and Katherine and does Stefan love them both?
The memory loss??? Seriously? It'll only take Stefan a episode to make Elena fall for him again?
It was hard to watch they fall the first time, I think I can't stand a second time of that annoying thing all over again.
AND I BET ON DAMON anytime in this whole "Damon x Destiny" shit thing.


can somebody explain the biggest question on my mind right now please?
Qetsiya claims she is the original witch (she did not explicitly say so but it's implied), who created doppelgängers of Silas and Amara because they cheated death.
Only two seasons ago Esther claimed she was the original witch (explicitly said) who created the first doppelgänger, a girl called Tatia, to seal the hybrid curse. So basically what they're telling us is that Qetsiya created a doppelgänger line for Amara, a couple of centuries later, Klaus and Elijah meet one of those doppelgängers and Esther picks her for her spell and coincidentally makes her a doppelgänger, the very same creature she's already supposed to be for a different reason. What?!?


So if Katherine has the cure in her blood.... Does that mean any vampires that wants to become human can chow down? Or why isn't klaus back to make hybrids... And I don't like the idea of Damon splitting up with elena but, I can't stand Katherine why can't she end up with Silas and have evil manipulative babies.. (Yes I know they can't have babies).. And hopefully Tessa can bring Bonnie back seen as they are distant relatives, I like Bonnie.


I loved Stefan loosing his memory!
And this was an absolutely mind blowing episode altogether!!!


I loved Qetsiyah! Such a complicated character! Fun to watch! Major mythology going on too! As for Nadia, I think (although this is just a wild guess) she might be Katherine's daughter! The one she gave away..


ridiculous. I hoped this season would repair the wreck that was last season but that was too much to hope for. Sorry, but for now, I am done with this show. I'll just watch the originals.

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The Vampire Diaries Season 5 Episode 3 Quotes

I know I said it doesn't bother me that you have a psychic connection to your ex-boyfriend, but I don't need the play by the play.


Play nice. Or I'm gonna revisit the deep, dark well idea.