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The Vampire Diaries Season 5: Grade It!

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The Vampire Diaries is taking a break. And, some might say, it's a well-needed break.

The first part of The Vampire Diaries Season 5 focused a great deal on breaking Bonnie free from The Other Side, while the past few episodes delved into Damon's demons and Katherine's aging process.

Which storylines jumped out, in either a positive or negative fashion? Who has been the most entertaining character? The last entertaining?

At the approximate midway point of the season, let's fill a new Vampire Diaries report card, shall we? Sound off with your overall take a grade below...

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Best Character: Tessa. Also, Craziest Character. Janina Gavankar imbued this ancient witch with humor, heart and, yes, a great deal of nuttiness. She made a terrific exit, played a critical role for a few weeks and then killed herself. A solid, enjoyable arc all around.

Worst Character: Bonnie. Sigh... where to begin? This distinction is partly based on the frustration that no character ever truly dies on The Vampire Diaries, which lowers the stakes a great deal. But far too much time was dedicated to resurrecting Bonnie, only for her to return and scarcely play a role on the subsequent installments. Sort of says a lot about where she stands, doesn't it? The show should have just let Bonnie go.

Bonnie with a Haircut

Best Episode: The Vampire Diaries Season 5 Episode 3, "Original Sin." Stefan was back, but this was our introduction to Qetsiyah, whose praises I just sang above. She was the driving force behind an episode that revealed a whole lot of backstory, yet remained focused on the background of Silas and what he's doing in Mystic Falls.

Worst Episode: The Vampire Diaries Season 5, Episode 11. Perhaps falling victim to the expectations TVD raised over the years, this midseason finale provided the same cliffhanger as an episode from just a few weeks earlier: is Katherine dead? It didn't really introduce any engrossing storylines to follow up on in 2014, either.

Most Undeveloped Storyline: We all thought/hoped Matt would finally be featured in a prominent arc when Gregor inhabited his body... only for the Traveler to be killed via special knife and Matt simply return to serving drinks at The Grill.

Best Advice: Elena to Jesse: "First rule of being a vampire is realizing how awesome you are."

Werewolf We Miss the Most: Tyler. You rocked on The Originals, but just for one episode. There's gotta be something Julie Plec and company can find for Tyler to do, right? In either New Orleans or Mystic Falls?

Hopes for 2014: Kill off Katherine. She's been on the verge of death for far too long. It's time to finally cut bait with Nadia's now-human mother. Also: Put Stefan and Caroline together... put Jeremy back in a wifebeater... give Matt something to do aside from collecting tips... stop making characters take over the bodies of other characters... no more dopplegangers!

Overall Grade: D.

YOUR turn, TV Fanatics. What grade would you give The Vampire Diaries Season 5 so far?

 

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

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Best character: Katherine
Worst character: Silas, Tessa, Dr. Wes, Jesse
Best epi: I'm still waiting for it.
Worst epi: Dead Man on Campus but there were others that sucked
Underdeveloped story: Travelers, Kat/Nadia relationship, destined Dopplegangers, anything to do with Matt or Bonnie. And Caroline is useless too.
Best advice: idk and idc
Werewolf we miss most: well duh I guess Tyler since Klaus has his own show.
Hopes for 2014: Finish a storyline without jumping all over the place. Stories start then don't come to fruition. New characters are introduced and old characters are left on the sidelines ie: Matt Bonnie and Caroline. Nothing gels. Stories don't intertwine. It's choppy. TOO MANY PLOTHOLES! Enough already.
We don't even know who the big bad is. Silas was a huge disappointment. His death was lame as hell. What's up with the Otherside. Is Tessa tormenting him over there? How is Bonnie dealing with being the anchor. KAT CANT DIE. Sorry Matt but you're nuts. Wtf is the deal with travelers? And I do not want Kat and Elena sharing a body. Re we and dumb and frustrating. No way. And does anyone actually GO to college? Ugh idk I grade this season a D. I'm so disappointed. I love this show. I hope they get their shit together cuz the actors are fantastic. This shit must be killing them.

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Tyler rocked in The Originals? I really wish that Klaus would just kill him.

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@ peterpan

agree!!!

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Why kill off Katherine? She is the root of the whole vampire diaries. She ties all the way back to Klaus. From Katherine we get the Traveler story, which could pull the show back up where I am hooked again. I do wonder about something. In season 1 Damon claimed that he loves Katherine and he wanted her back. Further in this part of the story Damon wanted Katherine to turn him into a vampire. So it was his choice long before his father killed him. Stefan did not influence him to become a vampire. Damon's love for Katherine had him a willing vampire. And when did Damon just forget and not love Katherine? If it was written why it sure didn't stick out as memorable. Stafan and Caroline? Makes no sense at all. I like Caroline and Tyler. That relationship was adventurous to me. She's a vampire and he's a werewolf/hybrid. I too like opposites attract and the chemistry Caroline and Klaus had. I think Caroline is destined to be with Klaus. Having her romantic with Stefan would mess up Stefan and Klaus bromance. And why have Caroline slutty? She loved Matt, she loved Tyler...she was heartbroken over Tyler. Jesse was rebound. Tyler and Klaus are enemies. Writers ought to work more with that story.
I'm all for Katherine to take over Elena's body and focus her affection on Stefan and his happiness. Elena would really have no more story. Her sweet loyal loving nature would heighten Katherine's loving nature. Damon should be the ultimate bad guy everyone still loves/hates. I just don't like him with Elena. Their relationship still seems sired. I would like to know more Nadia, Enzo and Aaron stories.
I rated season 5 a B- I do wish the writing didn't seem so lazy.

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@ Honey

@Honey You are right that Damon wanted to be a vampire but that was only to be WITH Katherine. When he was in transition in 1864 he decided to die and did not want to live forever without her when he thought she died in the church. He thought she was dead. Stefan tempted him with the human girl he brought to Damon and basically forced him to turn. Damon was so mad at Stefan because he felt it was his fault Katherine was captured and killed. Damon found out the vamps weren't burned and worked for 150 yrs to get her out and when the tomb opened the bitch wasn't there. For 150 years she never contacted Damon. He was heartbroken. Then even after she reappeared he asked her once more if she ever loved him while they were making out all over the Salvatore mansion in S2 and she told him it was Stefan she loved and it was always going to be Stefan and he was so hurt and betrayed (he snapped Jeremy's neck that night). This is when Damon fell out of love with Katherine.

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@ Katerina27

*correction....make out session leading to Jeremy's neck snap was in S1 not 2.
Stupid keyboard. LOL

Picazo

I agree with everything you said. minus one thing "Katherine" you are the only one that want her DEAD! everyone and their mom across the world LOVE our lovely Katherine. I hope she get a better storyline but not get killed off. because Katherine rock that show since s1. My grade C-

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I completely agree with Matt. This season has been… awful. Where to begin…. a) When did Elena become this "YOLO!" type of girl? She went from a really sweet, innocent girl to… the one egging Caroline to party and hook up and the one saying how awesome it is to be a vampire? While it's perfectly logical for Elena's character to change… when did that happen??? We never saw the character shift or what would cause her to act more like a Katherine-personality than an Elena-personality. She's too much like Katherine now, so the character no longer makes sense. Elena has gone from 'protagonist we cheered for' to… 'eh'. I would not be surprised if the show focuses more on Stefan and Caroline and places Elena on a more even-footed level with them, rather than the starring level she's had for the past seasons. b) yes, time for Katherine to go. She no longer serves any purpose -- unless they now need SOMEONE in the group to be human (aside from Matt) and maybe Katherine will serve that purpose…. (which brings me back to: the writers should've never turned Elena into a vampire!) c) The Augustine-vampire plot makes even less sense than the Silas plot, and that's saying something. For starters, the whole scheme between Damon and Enzo? Please. "Here, drink my rations for a year, Damon." Assuming Enzo could survive on a sip (!) of his own ration and not desiccate nor look any different (i.e., not tip off his captors)… hmm, wouldn't the Augustine-doctors have noticed, whilst conducting experiments, that Enzo was significantly weaker? Wouldn't they have noticed Damon was significantly stronger? That scheme made no sense. BTW, if Enzo is Italian (presumably), why does the actor have a (sort of) English (mixed with Auzzie??) accent? These are things that only TVD writers somehow get away with. d) I can't believe how little Matt is being employed by the writers, yet again. Did this guy piss off one of the writers in real life, or Julie Plec? Because it's astonishing what little material they give him. e) Why was Nadia introduced? Huge bombshell is dropped (Katherine's daughter is alive! Katherine meets her! They have a bonding, touching chat implying they're going to get to know each other!) and then the entire storyline is suddenly abandoned/ignored and Katherine is just back to her regular routine, as if nothing happened. So this is the daughter she searched for for years… and, despite learning she's alive, just acts as if nothing happened? It's clear the writers simply decided they didn't want to work this plot just yet. Ultimately it just makes the season a complete mess. f) Bonnie should've left at least a season ago. Her character just serves no purpose and the audience no longer cares. As a witch, in a show where we care most about vampires and werewolves, her character was always ancillary. But the whole "dead, brought back" mess of a plot has made it even more annoying. Let's face it: vampires are the coolest, then werewolves (sort of), and last are the witches. Same as with The Originals -- is anyone really fascinated by Devina? Even if she's a "super witch"? Does anyone care about the other witches? Not really. g) As Matt says, a huge problem with the show itself is the fact that characters can always be brought back to life. Mythology and fantasy shows only work if there's at least SOME rules/framework at play. TVD has none -- which is, of course, because that's incredibly convenient for lazy writers. There's always a way to do/get around whatever you wish to write next: because there are no rules. At the very least, it takes the emotional impact out of any character's death because we know it likely isn't permanent. So, yes, I give this season a D. It's been an absolutely mess and does not even feel like TVD anymore.

Kitanishi-h-mcdonald
@ AJ

Now I have not watched this show for two season already, but lol. "the protagonist we cheered for"? When did that happen? More like a boring holier-than-thou cardboard box who had no personality

Spindae-2o

Best character: I must say Silas. He ruled his solo scenes and being a psychopath is really working for Paul Wesley. I wasn't HAPPY with the way his story ended. It was just to easy anticlimactic. I expected so much more. Tessa was fine as well.
Worst character: Hmm prof Maxfield. I' m really not fine with his character, he just doesn't fit that mad prof thing they want to try out.
Best EP: Yes Original sin was the strongest intallment of the season, closely followed by the premier which had a great new vibe and the 9th episode The Cell. Introducing Enzo and digging into Stefan-Katherine with Caroline being around was really good.
Worst EP. was ep 7 death of the maiden. It was to rushed and anticlimatic Silas and Tessa deserved better. Even though I liked the triple Nina scene and Tessa be Bonnies first walkthrough.
Under. story: Matt.
Advice: Enzo story and Stefan-Caroline scenes, and a lot o Katarina. I know you love/hate her Matt but she has the best lines and I honestly care for how she will end up.

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you really are dumb if you want Stefan and Caroline together , its not teen wolf, not all friends have to become a couple. Katherine's death would be the end of the show. Bonnie needs more episode that's it and BTW nobody cares about Tyler.

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ok I will keep the emotions out but I disagree about your worst character. I f Bonnie had nothing to do, why did you dislike her? May be you should have put her under 'not developed.' Choosing her as worst because she wasnt given screen time is like choosing Elena as your best character because she is in every episode.

Cat-morgan

I agree with your selections for best/worst. "Original Sin" was the highest rated live episode this season and "For Whom the Bell Tolls" being the best performer over L+3, L+7. Loved both episodes, loved Tessa and was extremely disappointed that Matt isn't going to become the next villain and they cut that story short. My hopes when the season returns is for Katherine to become the next passenger most likely in Elena's body, I'm sure Katherine would choose a body identical to her former. This will open up the Traveller story and give us further insight in to Travellers and not to mention add loads of drama because as we know Katherine wants Stefan. It will be interesting to see if Katherine's next agenda is to actually take over Elena's body completely and what she does with it once there. I could go on forever about the possibilities of this but I won't! Putting Stefan and Caroline together doesn't add anything to story, yeah they have a nice friendship but them being together is hardly going to set the world on fire. I say leave it alone, it works as is. Caroline is better served bring some of the other familiar faces back in to play that currently lack story. What happened to the sister bond, Bonnie, Caroline and Elena? It all seems to be about boys, give us some girl power! Tyler and Caroline there's still story there that fans want to see. Also I'm sure Caroline could improve upon the story with Aaron now that he knows all about vampires and who killed his family line. Obviously Elena doesn't care maybe Caroline will/should. I'd like to see Aaron less passive and take action, even if it is against Damon. I cannot get in to the Augustine Vampire story it makes not sense to me that these 100+ year-old vampires would become subservient to one human with a vervain needle without compulsion! :/

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Really Bonnie you can go fuck yourself she is the whole reason why your characters are even alive at this point. Just come out and say you hate black women characters. Stop bullshitting us Matt and just say it. Because you never had a good reason to dislike her. Why because she isn't going thru men like a new pair of underwear. She is not submissive and does whatever caroline and elena wants. Or barbecue people actually care about her character and see her humanity and not just the magical negroe

Vampire Diaries Quotes

You want a love that consumes you. You want passion and adventure, and even a little danger... I want you to get everything you're looking for. But for right now, I want you to forget that this happened. Can't have people knowing I'm in town yet. Goodnight, Elena.

Damon

Damon: You know what they are? Children. Like lighting a candle's going to make everything OK, or even saying a prayer. Or pretending Elena's not going to end up just like the rest of us murdering vampires. Stupid, delusional, exasperating little children. And I know what you're going to say: 'It makes them feel better, Damon.' So what? For how long? A minute, a day? What difference does it make? Because in the end, when you lose somebody, every candle, every prayer is not going to make up for the fact that the only thing you have left is hole in your life where that somebody that you cared about used to be. And a rock with a birthday carved into it that I'm pretty sure is wrong. So thanks, friend. Thanks for leaving me here to babysit. Because I should be long gone by now. I didn't get the girl, remember? I'm just stuck here fighting my brother and taking care of the kids. You owe me big.
Alaric: I miss you too, buddy.

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