Back to school…seriously?

Duana Posted by Duana at October 24, 2011 18:54:25 October 24, 2011 18:54:25

Vampire Diaries Season 3 Episode 6 recap

So this episode had a lot going on and obviously some fun, but I had a big stick in my craw about it early on, and I just have to get it out of the way.  Because what I realize is it actually needs some help from you.

This show never skimps on emotional realism.   ItΓÇÖs camp, sometimes, but it never isnΓÇÖt authentic to who these kids are, and what they care about.   

So sometimes, you know when they say ΓÇÿitΓÇÖs not you, itΓÇÖs me?ΓÇÖ  I think thatΓÇÖs the case for me here.    Because I donΓÇÖt get the whole ΓÇÿwe are seniors nowΓÇÖ celebration.   Every school-based show hits it eventually, but it doesnΓÇÖt feel like anything I know.     What exactly are the rights and privileges conferred, other than passes to go talk to the guidance counselor about your applications?

(A further sidebar should point out that at the time I was going through Ontario high school ΓÇô and until pretty recently, actually ΓÇô it was five years long.  That pretty much quashes any feelings except ΓÇ£Get Me OUUUUUUUTTTTΓÇ¥.  )   

So yes, I have a hard time understanding the yen to go back to high school when your life is constantly on the line, as per Elena and Bonnie and Caroline, on an hourly basis.   But then, given how childishly they acted this ep, maybe it makes sense?

ThatΓÇÖs not just a segue.   I really couldnΓÇÖt believe the amount of pouting and whining that went on, not to mention the endless evocation of the words ΓÇÿmy boyfriendΓÇÖ.  LetΓÇÖs just examine the dialogue exchange near the top of the show, and before you send me email, yes, IΓÇÖm paraphrasing.

Bonnie:  It doesnΓÇÖt matter that my boyfriend keeps seeing and talking to his dead exes!  ThatΓÇÖs Okay!
Caroline:  My boyfriend was turned into the first ever hybrid, but thatΓÇÖs all right! No big deal!
Elena:   I met my boyfriend, the one who has given up his soul, on this day last year.
Others:  You win.

So, sing it with me, yΓÇÖall.   Why does she have to win?   I know sheΓÇÖs the star of the show and all that good stuff.   But why do we have to portray this kind of friendship where Elena always has to be the most hurt, the most troubled?   Could she spare some concern for her erstwhile brother, who is literally seeing ghosts?  

Instead, Elena goes on to play cat-and-mouse with Stefan for a few moments.   This story didnΓÇÖt do a lot for me, particularly as Stefan was, you know, free again by the end of the ΓÇÿplanΓÇÖ ΓÇô  but there were some high water marks.

Elena played the ΓÇÿdrunk high school girlΓÇÖ to the hilt.   I could see how it might be over-the-top any other time, but she was so authentic here as your average slam-it-back-to-forget teenager.   I was impressed.   Less appealing in this story were the awkward situations with Stefan and Rick in the hallway, which really just serve to make us want Elena to take self defense from someone else, no?   What IΓÇÖm getting at, I suppose, is that high school felt like an awkward setting for this story.   Made it silly where it could have been more pressing.   The presence of Stefan and Rebecca (and while she was shoehorned in, I LOVE her desire to be on the Spirit Squad and go to keggers and things, highly amusing) just felt silly instead of threatening.

But of course, now that sheΓÇÖs treating Stefan like an annoying little brother, Elena has eyes to see Damon for what he is.   I cheered when she actually let herself feel jealousy at DamonΓÇÖs flirting with Rebecca.    Oh, PS, how incredibly hot was it when he touched the bottom of her ribs?  I rewound at least three times, because I was trying to catch the dialogue,  catch my breath, and also figure out what kind of outfit she was wearing to expose that spot on her body.     I came to few conclusions except that I canΓÇÖt breathe, even now, just thinking about it.    These two are going to explore areas that Elena and Stefan never did, and IΓÇÖm not even putting a non-gutter qualifier on that.   DamonΓÇÖs passion, knowing everything he needs to about Elena, and still not treating her as Alaric does ΓÇô like a dead girl walking ΓÇô is incredible on its own.  Now, if I were really filling out my wish list,  IΓÇÖd want to know why he loves her.  I know we had allusions this episode to the young woman being ΓÇÿstrongΓÇÖ, but beyond that.   Now that Damon could have her (soon, by sweeps) what makes her the one he loves?  

ItΓÇÖs both easier and more difficult to understand than poor dumb Matt, who just wanted his sister back, and asked few questions.   I love that as soon as she had a flesh-and-blood body again, she didnΓÇÖt so much as ask how he was or have a sandwich before going to ruin ElenaΓÇÖs life.    So we know Elena neither saw her nor heard her ΓÇô is this an inferiority complex?  Is this what happens if you think youΓÇÖre not being heard?   VickieΓÇÖs now bound by BonnieΓÇÖs spell but I really do hope we havenΓÇÖt seen the last of her.   I would have loved it if  she continued bumming around town.   ΓÇ£Slightly impotent vampire and her inept human brotherΓÇ¥ is a show IΓÇÖd love to watch.  

Shows  IΓÇÖm on the fence about include ΓÇ£CarolineΓÇÖs boyfriend really does have feelingsΓÇ¥.   I donΓÇÖt want TylerΓÇÖs jerkitude to be so easily dispensed with.   I donΓÇÖt want one lecture from Caroline to fix all thatΓÇÖs wrong with him.   I donΓÇÖt think thatΓÇÖs whatΓÇÖs going to happen, not least because of the midnight snack he shared with Rebecca.   But since his uncle Mason brought out his best-and-worst jerkitude, we can look forward to what emotional havoc that wreaks ΓÇô I hope Caroline doesnΓÇÖt put up with too much, though.

Stefan called Elena pathetic for keeping the torch for him.  She said it made her strong.   Is it wrong if I feel theyΓÇÖre kind of both right?   WouldnΓÇÖt it be nice if Elena could lock away her emotions for Stefan and continue to pursue a life?  WouldnΓÇÖt she be the toughest around?  Her thinking, I understand, is that heΓÇÖs only going to go back to being the Stefan she loves if she saves him.  But what if she gave up being Florence Nightingale?  WouldnΓÇÖt she be cooler and more desirable still?  IsnΓÇÖt Katherine the coolest in this situation just for having her own path?  

Photos:
CW

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