Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Case of the.... The Vampire Diaries - Episode 4-2

So I’m not quite sure what to make of the new introduction at the beginning of each episode of The Vampire Diaries.  When it was used last week, I figured it was just a variation of the typical “Previously On…” montage, but when it appeared again this past week, it made me wonder if this was something semi-permanent.  I mean, I don’t particularly mind it – it’s pretty succinct and informative.  I don’t imagine it’ll last more than a few more episodes, though.

This episode kicked off with Stefan attempting to sidestep the whole “feeding on humans” aspect of Elena’s transformation by immediately feeding her animal blood.  Damon, of course, disagreed and felt that she needed to feed on humans to survive.  Neither was completely right, although Damon was a little closer to correct.  I actually appreciated this.  While the results aren’t always happy or great, the writers are definitely presenting Stefan as being “right” in regards to his philosophy that Elena should be able to make decisions for herself (the biggest conflict between the brothers).  While I consistently root for Stefan in this love triangle, it is refreshing to see that occasionally Damon not only knows what’s best for Elena, but that his methods are also the right way to go.

I enjoyed the introduction of the new vampire hunter, particularly his methods.  He always wears gloves, which are soaked in vervain.  That way, when he shakes people’s hands, he can immediately tell if they’re vampires.  I also liked the clever manner in which he attempted to weed out the vampires, by draining somebody of their blood and seeing who reacts to the scent.

Actually, the church scene was a really incredible scene all around.  I loved the way the central characters interacted with each other.  Despite sitting at various areas of the church, they were able to interact with each other through whispers (other characters, like Matt and Jeremy, were able to piece together the conversations based on who they could hear).  Last week I commended the scene in which Elena feeds for the first time (noting how beautiful the single tear dropping from her eye was), and this week I feel the same way about her moment with Matt.  It was tender and sweet – Matt trying to repay Elena for his role in her death, and Elena trying to be gentle with Matt as she drank with him – and I loved the choir singing church music in the background.  The scene was made even stronger by the fact that they didn’t feel the need to “dumb down” why Elena didn’t accidentally kill Matt.  Her compassion and feelings for him prevented her from ever hurting him.

I also thought the notion of all of these people speaking favorably of the man who tried to kill them was strangely sweet.  I am surprised to see that Pastor Young was legitimately killed off, though.  After such a strong introduction, I figured he’d be the primary villain for the season.

Not surprisingly, the lantern scene was a favorite as well.  More than anything else, I loved the references.  I mean, Uncle Zack!  Who thought we’d ever hear his name again.  Side note, I do have to wonder if the fact that the first two names that Stefan mentioned were people that Damon killed was a sly slap in the face to his brother.  Anyway, it was great to hear Matt and Jeremy respectfully mourn the loss of Vicki, and for Caroline to honor her father (and Tyler’s father), and for Jeremy and Elena to pay their respects to Jenna.  Above all else, I appreciated the fact that Elena said good bye to herself.  My criticism when Caroline was turned was that nobody treated her transformation as a tragedy.  The girl died!  She would never grow old with her husband.  She would never have kids.  This was a tremendously sad thing.  So, I was happy that Elena acknowledged the fact that she, ya’ know, died.  But where was all the love for Elena’s uncle John?  Ya’ know, the guy who gave up his life to save Elena’s.

Damon’s closing scene with Alaric was sweet as well.  I always loved their friendship, and it was nice to see Damon recognize that.  The two of them really did rely on each other – they were the person each of them could turn to when they had nobody else.  I also liked the way Alaric just sat there and listened, without interrupting (even though Damon wouldn’t have heard him).  It echoed the sentiment of them always being there for each other.

No comments: