The Vampire Diaries Season 8 Episode 2 – TV Review
Bring back Kai, then we’ll talk.
TL;DR TVD finally wraps up the Sarah loose thread without being too obnoxious; it looks like the Giant Space Flea From Nowhere really is a Siren; Bonnie and Enzo reaffirm their love, but are still kept tragically apart; Damon’s mental fortitude wavers; Alaric finds evidence that the Siren is indeed related to Hell, corroborating Damon’s hyperbolic rant last episode; Caroline and Stefan get engaged.
I didn’t squee hard, but I didn’t not squee.
So Tristin Mays must have been let out of her MacGyver prison cell for a few days, which means TVD has, after a whole season of silence, decided to get back to ol’ Sarah Salvatore. The Giant Space Flee/Siren/Sybil sees a flash of her in Enzo’s mind and decides to kill her to fuck with him, while our heroes also figure out what’s going on and race to protect her. Everyone collides, with the eventual result being that although Stefan convinces Damon not to murder Sarah, striving to show that Damon isn’t beyond redemption, Sybil just does it, anyway. Bye, Sarah. At least Matt wasn’t involved this time. Meanwhile, Bonnie goes against plans and tries to abduct Enzo to safety, but he insists on returning to Sybil to keep Bonnie safe. Sybil then finds out about Bonnie (Enzo had apparently been shielding his thoughts from her the whole time until now?). And she finds out about Elena, and replaces Damon’s memories of her with memories of herself. Cute. Meanwhile, Alaric and Horny Intern research the treasure room from the vault cave, and discover that the Armory once got a delivery from Mystic Falls in 1790; a delivery of a Hell object. Horny Intern mentions that she saw Hell one time after a car crash where she temporarily died. Okay? Meanwhile, Hot Nanny continues to throw herself at Alaric. And Stefan proposes to Caroline. She accepts.
Well, who else is she gonna marry? Matt? Hahahaha.
TVD is yet to return to any place of urgency or excitement. But this episode, at least, isn’t a huge loss.
The whole thing stinks of final season-itis, what with marriage proposals and loose ends being addressed. But it’s still kind of fun watching the old gang do vampire stuff like frivolous neck snapping and heart-grabbing.
The countdown to Elena’s return is making me impatient, though.
Why I hate this episode:
TVD does love playing that footage of her first meeting with Damon over and over again. It’s exhausting. And can you imagine if Nina Dobrev doesn’t actually come back? Fucking Gossip Girl got Taylor Momsen, who had been fired, to come back for its finale. Surely TVD can get Nina back. And for more than a single episode, please.
Sybil is hot, but now that I see it’s Grace from UnReal, and with some weird pastiche Australi-British-Merican accent, I’m not so impressed. Her nebulous mind control powers are underwhelming from a viewer standpoint, too. At least the Originals had to get up in your face and compel you and shit first. Sybil just shuffles in and stands around. It’s not exciting.
If Enzo and Damon had managed to conceal Bonnie and Elena from Sybil’s apparently inescapable mind control/psychic powers, then I’m sorry, but I’m not very intimidated. Damon kind of had an excuse in that he turned off his humanity, so maybe he wasn’t actively thinking about Elena as much (except for the part where Sybil used Elena’s voice to lure him into the vault last season, and he said her name aloud. Maybe Sybil forgot?). But Enzo somehow just evaded any mind reading? Hell, how did the two of them even know she was so good at reading minds if she couldn’t even read theirs? What?
I’m still unsure of how a Supernatural one-shot monster ended up being the major villain of a season of TVD. A Siren? Really?
Oh, and Stefan chose the day that his only living relative is murdered as the same day to propose to Caroline? That’s going to be an awkward anniversary each year.
But it’s not all bad:
Caroline and Stefan still feel like each other’s second choices, but it’s nice that they’re happy together. So I’ll allow it.
I didn’t think I’d be so on board for the return of Sarah Salvatore. Mainly because I thought that any plotline featuring her would also have to feature Matt. But hey, Matt isn’t here, so it’s all good. And I legitimately didn’t know whether she’d live or die, so the tension was real.
She doesn’t live, sadly. But I appreciated that the show didn’t forget about her. Bonnie dutifully reminds us that killing Zach’s pregnant girlfriend is the worst thing Damon ever did, and Stefan, in a bid to talk Damon off the “I’m destined for Hell” ledge (and stop him from snapping Sarah’s neck per Sybil’s orders), says sparing Sarah now could help balance Damon’s karma. And, even in his humanity off state, it gets through to Damon.
Sybil’s prompt stabbing of Sarah is an effective bummer to the ordeal, but that’s what happens when you’re a TVD minor character being paraded out for the final season victory lap.
All the stuff with the Armory, the weird symbol, Sybil’s projections of Hell, and Horny Intern’s experience with the afterlife give me hope that some more dead characters might return. Screw the Other Side and the Phoenix Stone. We’ve got Biblical Hell in the game, now. Maybe that’s where Katherine is? Omfg.
The connection back to Mystic Falls could signal a welcome return to our favourite small town with a high animal attack death rate. If Season 7 taught us anything, it’s that completely splintering the story geographically didn’t help. And that lesbian vampires are boring.
Horny Intern refers to Hot Nanny as “Hot Nanny.” Yas, bitch.
Oh, and despite my best attempts at remaining cynical, Stefan’s proposal to Caroline still got me tingly. Damn you, TVD. How dare you keep me emotionally invested?