The Vampire Diaries: "Klaus"
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The Vampire Diaries: "Klaus"

As season two ticks away, it’s becoming apparent there are two main types of Vampire Diaries episodes: the action-packed adventure and the info dump. Last week, the show was in classic action-adventure mode, with the pace flying so fast you could barely keep up. This week also moved at the speed of light, but instead of action taking up our time, it was information whizzing directly into our brains. Big, juicy, Elijah-guided, mythology-changing information. After giddily giggling through this entire talk fest, I honestly can’t decide which type of episode is the best. They’re both far too fun!

I’m going to tell you what this show has that makes it great, and that’s guts. Not many shows would have the stones to dismiss their entire season’s mythology as false only a few short weeks before the finale. This demonstrates the writers' extreme confidence not only in the story they are telling but also the inherent entertainment factor of all the episodes leading up to the big reveal. Looking back, are any of you really upset the Sun and the Moon curse was a big red herring? Aside from a few less entertaining moments with the werewolf clan, I can’t say that I am. It was just too entertaining a ride. Besides, knowing that Elijah and Klaus are brothers (brothers!) makes it all worth it, right?

The best thing about the reveal that Klaus is actually some sort of vampire/werewolf hybrid who is looking to reawaken his werewolf side and create a new race of supercreatures is how it ups the stakes. It’s no longer simply about saving Elena. Klaus has been teased as our Big Bad for so long, and it’s nice to finally see him have plans that back up those pronouncements. There’s nothing worse than a Big Bad with no ambitions to take over the world. Without it, they’re just, like, a Medium Bad. One of the more interesting things about the character is how he has gradually progressed from a phantom into a living, (not actually) breathing threat. Not many villains get an entire season’s build-up, complete with a stopover inside another character and extensive flashbacks before being fully revealed in the present. Joseph Morgan has a lot to live up to with this role, and so far, he seems up to the task. Also, his haircut is fantastic. Let’s just get that out of the way right now.

Beyond the flashback-laden show and tell session (and, yes, by now you all know I love a flashback), the rest of the episode was quite entertaining in its own right. By far the best part was Elena and Elijah’s newfound truce in order to take down Klaus, and not just because the ever-amazing Elijah was involved. The big story here for me was Elena and the strength of her conviction to even team up with him in the first place. The saga of Elena as some sort of “damsel in distress” who needs to be saved by Stefan and Damon could easily take over the entire character and make her weak and dependent on the people around her. At every turn, however, Elena rejects this label and remains her own woman, and that woman wants to fight her own battles and make her own decisions. Elena Gilbert is a badass, and I think this is something we viewers should be shouting from the rooftops. Seriously, the girl spent the entire episode plotting to kill one of the most powerful vampires in the world and still had time to take a little break to console a distraught Jenna and placate her boyfriend. I wouldn’t have been surprised to see her solve complex mathematical equations and get a bit of work done on her novel while she was at it. She’s got skills.

This brings us to Damon. Last week, I mentioned how I finally felt Damon’s love for Elena was a real thing and not something the writers made up because love triangles involving brothers are all angsty and cool and stuff. After tonight’s episode, I still feel his love for her is real, but the way it is manifesting itself in Damon’s character is less than ideal. Last week’s episode concerned me because Stefan seemed less willing to do everything it takes to save Elena, but after seeing she is darn well capable of saving herself, Stefan’s reasonability seems much more appealing than Damon’s rash impulsiveness. At no time does Damon listen to anything Elena says; he only wants to do what he thinks is right. Is this supposed to convey how much he loves her?

Listen, Damon is designed as a flawed character, and his flaws make him interesting, but when he does things like abusively attack his little plaything Andie, it’s hard to see him as anything but a monster. Even a tortured monster isn’t excused from all of his monstrous behavior, especially when he knows better, and his attack on Andie at the end was definitely crossing a line. Honestly, both Damon and Stefan could do with some character development beyond “loving Elena Gilbert,” but perhaps that would be better explored in season three at this point. There’s just too much action awaiting us in the next few weeks! Bring it, Klaus.

Stray observations:

  • Ear tug.
  • I don’t know how many ways I can say Elijah is awesome without sounding like a blathering idiot. All I know is: Can he stick around? Forever? Maybe he can buy the Grill and be like the Peach Pit’s Nat, handing out sage wisdom while slinging hamburgers! Or, maybe he can just run for mayor or something. You know, either way.
  • What do we think about the Elijah/Katherine/Klaus flashback triangle? Was Elijah in love with Katherine, or did he simply have affection for her? It seems like all brothers in this series are contractually obligated to fall for the Petrova bloodline.
  • So was Greta willingly working for Klaus, or was she being compelled? Can witches even be compelled? And if she isn’t compelled, does this mean that Dr. Martin and Luka both died for nothing? (I don’t know why I’m so obsessed with the Martins…)
  • I heard rumblings on Twitter that Klaus’ story is similar to the Underworld series. Not being familiar with that, can anyone corroborate? And if this is the case, did that take away from your enjoyment of the new mythology?
  • Jenna knows. SHE KNOWS!
  • Alaric is not dead. He is just sleeping. Right? RIGHT?
  • “I’m the one who got her off it. Right before you and your friends killed me… twice.”
  • “I’m a little behind on the times, but I believe the term you’re searching for is OMG.”
  • “You’ve been angry at me for keeping secrets, and this is one of my secrets: I’m obsessed with vampires.”
  • “Werewolves? Now I know you’re joking.”
  • “What does that make Klaus? A werewolf or a vampire?” “He’s both.”

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