Instead of properly grieving, Elena uses witchy herbs to hallucinate that Damon’s with her, but the side effects turn her into a different person. Meanwhile, Caroline searches for a solution to their border problem with no help from runaway Stefan. Here is a recap of the Vampire Diaries season premiere, “I’ll Remember.”
A flickering lantern in the forest sets the mood for a makeout session. Two random teens are startled by rustling. Hello, Sheriff Forbes. In a vampire-free zone, she has nothing better to do than bust underage drinkers. As soon as they cross the border, a vampire strikes. “Today was a good day,” says Elena. Sophomore year as a pre-med major looks bright. Thanks to her dealer, Luke, Elena whips up a flaming cocktail of herbs and blood, letting her see Damon. Back in Mystic Falls, Matt practices Tae Bo. Jeremy spends his days on the couch with girls and video games. And Caroline, now a dropout, frequently picnics with her mom at the town border. Instead of finding a witch in Savannah who can contact the dead, Stefan has started working in a car shop and dating a girl named Ivy.
Caroline and Alaric, now a professor of occult studies, discuss the progress she’s made on a way to take back the town. Zilch. At the homecoming gathering, Alaric bumps into Jo from the med clinic, and she asks for a swig from his flask. Too bad it’s blood. Alaric’s lost his human nature and his dating game.
Elena demands more herbs from Luke. Even though he blames himself for her loss, Luke hesitates to oblige, so she rummages through his room. Hallucination Damon asks why Bonnie’s not conjured as well, but he already knows it’s because Bonnie would disapprove of Elena’s methods. Elena comes across a girl having car trouble and eats a little snack. Caroline interrupts, causing the girl to run into town. After Caroline all but calls her crazy, Elena admits that she tried to grieve normally, but seeing Damon is the only thing that helps. Matt’s Tae Bo class finds the wounded girl. Their teacher, Tripp, tries to question her until Sheriff Forbes whisks her away. After she’s treated, Matt kidnaps her and brings her to Caroline for compulsion.
Stefan finally answers a call from Elena. He believes the search to bring Damon and Bonnie back was pointless, and he needed to move on; so should she. When Tyler learns what Luke has been helping Elena with, he puts Luke in a chokehold that Alaric breaks up, concerned about Tyler triggering his werewolf curse. Back at the cemetery, Elena thanks hallucination Damon for saving Stefan and Alaric and Tyler and giving her everything she’s ever wanted. When he reminds her she’ll experience an eternity of torment, she’s enraged to the point of throwing around candles. Then, Elena has a good cry.
According to Caroline, “Today was not a good day.” Everyone has drifted apart and is pretending they can get through this alone. False. Caroline needs Stefan’s help, but he breaks his phone screen after her repeated calls. Elena asks Alaric how he’s handling his new lease on life. He’s doing no better and no worse than okay. She used to hate everything about being a vampire until she discovered the promise of eternal love. Now that that’s been ripped away, she wants Alaric to wipe her memories of Damon. Elsewhere, flannel-wearing Damon makes vampire shaped pancakes for Bonnie as the two spend the morning in a cabin.
– Even while including supernatural elements, this episode returned The Vampire Diaries to its days of simple, human problems, such as struggling with emotions, desiring normality, and deciding to move on. Its lack of complexity did not reduce the quality, but rather, the opposite is true. It contained solid character-based drama that set up mostly intriguing storylines for the season.
– One notable aspect of this episode was the mix of scenes it contained. The characters intermingled well this week and each had storylines that felt fitting and tonally unique.
– It seems that during the past few seasons when the writers do not know what to do with Elena, they resort to making her unstable. Although it has not been unjustified, it has become increasingly difficult (for me at least) to enjoy her as the main character.
– Alaric’s resurrection excited me most about last season’s finale, but it’s sad to see him as a shell of his former self. While, like Elena, it’s understandable given the circumstances, and while it provided a dash of humor during his interaction with Jo, I hope the season has a trail of acceptance and happiness with a certain drinking buddy in store for him.
– The budding relationship between Liv and Tyler was unforeseen, yet engaging. If you had asked me what I thought about a possible coupling last season, I would have thought it was crazy, but now I’m interested to see how this plays out, not particularly rooting for or against it.
– Matt has been in the background so much over the course of this series that I enthusiastically welcome absolutely any storyline involving him. Thankfully, one is on the horizon, and as a bonus, it involves Colin Ferguson!
– Well, that ending was quite a way to grab our attention. Not only did Elena give Alaric a decision where both answers seem possible, but then Bonnie and Damon were fraternizing in peace. Bets on whether or not this turns into a Buffy season six situation?
– Are pancakes decorates as vampires the new Olaffles?
– “How long do you think it takes after someone comes back to life before they can start dating again?” – Elena on priorities