Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Vampire Diaries

The Vampire Diaries
Episode 14: Down the Rabbit Hole
By: Carlos Uribe

The Vampire Diaries is a show about Elena's love triangle with two vampires.

Spoilers Ahoy!


That final shot of the episode was absolutely gorgeous. It's a show where Jeremy falls down after his neck was snapped and his body was drained of blood. His body is on the ground and his arm stretches out to Bonnie. Bonnie can't help but look in horror as she herself is bleeding from a stab wound. It's a powerful image but the way it's done seems to suggest that Jeremy is really dead. This is the Vampire Diaries so it might find a way to bring him back to life. He might have been wearing a ring that allows him to survive supernatural deaths or a spell might be able to bring him back. This isn't the first time he's shockingly died before. The last time it happened, he gained a connection to the ghost world that proves to be useful in tonight's episode. At the same time, this is the Vampire Diaries. This is a show that likes to kill off at least one main character a season and it's introducing a new potential villain. What better way to introduce Silas than to have him permanently kill Jeremy? It's a bold statement. I have no idea what's going to happen but that image of Jeremy laying on the ground is going to be in my mind far after this show is done. I have tendency to remember shots that look like they could be done by classical painters. An added note about the ending is that Katherine has stolen the cure for an unknown purpose. It's great to have that character come back and immediately start to cause problems for our group. Overall, the ending of this episode was shocking, it was beautiful, and it helped to cement this episode in my memory.

How was the rest of the episode? It was a marked improvement over last week's misstep. The episode begins where the last one left off. The group is completely separated. Damon has been captured by one of the Five. This hunter, Vaughn, isn't working for Shane but he's working by himself. His mission is simple: allow Silas' tomb to be opened so that he can go in, shove the cure down Silas' throat, and kill Silas. He believes that's the entire purpose of being a vampire hunter so he's dedicated in his quest. Vaughn's domination over Damon and his brief battle with Rebekah helps to establish him as a formidable opponent to our group. Now that Katherine has the cure, I suspect that he's going to start tracking her down. She better watch her step. After Damon manages to free himself from Vaughn, with the help from Rebekah, he basically just sits down and does nothing. Why? He finds out that there's only one dose of the cure and he still thinks that Elena is going to take it. He might not want her to have the cure but he's going to do the selfless thing. He's not going to get in her way. It's a great sign of character growth that he actually goes through with it. He used to be a vampire that had very little control over his impulses. Now he's actually willing to stop himself because of his love for Elena. A pretty great episode for Damon even if he had very little actual agency. After all, doing nothing doesn't create a lot of action but it was necessary.

Shane uses Bonnie to open the door into Silas' tomb, which turns out to be underground. The episode title comes from the characters having to down the hole just like how Alice went down a rabbit hole. This spell does get a little bit out of control and Shane's leg is broken. He's tracked under a rock which basically means he can't do anything to free Silas. He might be taken out of the equation but Jeremy and Bonnie continue to search for the cure. They do find the cure but not before Silas tries to take over Bonnie's mind by conjuring up a hallucination of Bonnie's grandmother. Jeremy doesn't see this “ghost” and deduces that Silas has been tricking people all along. Jeremy and Bonnie do find the cure and the rest has already been covered. Their reaction to realizing that there is only one cure was pretty great as well as Bonnie freaking out that they might have to release Silas. So this group is the one that lost the most as one member is dead, the other one is dying, and the final one is taken out of the action due to an injury.

The final group is made up of Elena, Rebekah, and Stefan. It breaks up when Rebekah learns that there's only one cure. She betrays them because she wants to be human but she's taken out by Vaughn before she can even go down the hole. Elena and Stefan are separated as he has to revive his brother. Stefan manages to catch up Elena but only after she had been ambushed by Katherine. What's great is that the series is able to use a twist where it pretends that Elena saved Jeremy before the ultimate reveal that it's actually Katherine. This was a group that basically broke down once the true nature of the cure was revealed. How did they find out? Klaus had yelled out the answer. The people back in Mystic Falls had to help Rebekah, Elena, and Jeremy find the cure by using pictures of the tattoo and the sword. Once Tyler and Caroline found the sword, they run into a major obstacle of having to translate the sword. The good news is that Klaus did it for them. The bad is that he hid the information about there being only one cure until he could yell it to his sister. That's not all that happened as Caroline managed to convince Klaus to at least allow Tyler to get a head start before killing him. This means that Tyler has to leave Mystic Falls, once again, for an unknown period of time. Their break-up scene was sad and felt like it really was the end for the two lovers.

The island had a lot of groups going about. There was the hunter who wanted to use the cure on Silas. Shane was hoping to use Bonnie and Jeremy to release Silas. Elena, Rebekah, and Stefan hoped to find the cure for different reasons. Rebekah for herself but the other two so they could deal with the Klaus problem. The episode had hinted there was another party at play before revealing it as Katherine. Katherine is looking for the cure for some unknown reason. She might want it for herself or she's working on behalf of someone else. The locals on the island who sought to kill them because they're not friendly or they fear what might happen with Silas. All of this grouping worked really well to create drama especially as they all discovered information at a different rate. The scenes back at home also worked pretty well. Overall, Down the Rabbit Hole was a great episode made memorable by that amazing ending shot.

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