TVD 4x14: Let's all jump down a well, because that seems like a great idea that can't go wrong

Feb 15, 2013 07:43

Ummmmmmmmmmm so.

The past few weeks have been insane (I literally have not had a single day off in February), and I keep meaning to post a sort of abridged reaction post to all the episodes I've missed recapping, but then this episode happened and I'm just like, "BUT WHAT ARE THOUGHTS THO." So this post is like to be scattered and unintelligent and rambling. So, the usual.

To begin:


Ok but that happened. And while the misery is slowly creeping in, for a while there I was just genuinely shocked. Which means that as much as I hate the idea of a TVD sans the Littlest Gilbert, I also kind of love this move? Because any time the show genuinely shocks me, I totally dig it. And this shocked me. It was so brutal in its abruptness and it was all just kind of awesome, you know? Because I am so skewed at this point that I equate heartbreak with awesomeness. So this was amazing.

So yeah, I gasped and stared at my screen for a minute. Because honestly, well done, show. This was an episode that I was sort of priding myself on having called, and then the show goes and does this out of nowhere, and I was floored. And tbh, I totally love that feeling.

And even now, a part of me just doesn't believe it. Like, how can this show be without Jeremy Gilbert? How does that even work? Even though he hasn't always been a significant factor in the show's plotlines, and often just went missing from episodes entirely, he's always been a presence on the show, you know? And yes, characters who are more important for what they signify than they are for what they do are always at risk of going out in a blaze of symbolic glory, so perhaps I should have expected this more. But I suppose I thought that even on this show, something had to be sacred. And then the TV gods laughed at me, and I *facepalm* at my own naiveté. Because of course this show would make this move, and of course it has to stick. This is exactly the sort of death that has to stick. Because as much as these characters find miraculous ways out of everything, every so often something has to be permanent, as an example, as a warning, and usually it has to be something you can't recover from. Because yes, this is escapism, but in life, people die, and it's awful, and you can't fix it, and even the most supernatural show still has to be connected to the world we live in. Wow that got depressing.

Ok, and just one thing about the actual nuts and bolts of Jeremy's death. Part of why it was so brutal was the sheer pointlessness of it all. Not plot-wise, of course, but practically, within the story. Katherine pushes him back down onto Silas essentially to gain a head start, because he'd already moved enough for her to get the cure. And then Silas basically just has poor self-control and grips too hard, because the most useful thing to do would have been to drain Jeremy dry, but instead he grips to hard and just snaps his neck. And guys. That, honestly, is just BRUTAL. I'm not saying that Jeremy would have lived through this. But the way it was done was excessively harsh in a way that actually really worked for me. Because as we've established, maximum pain makes me happy.

Oy, this whole post is already unfocused and rambling, but, just, IDK, GUYS, JEREMY GILBERT JUST DIED AND NOW I HAVE A LOT OF FEELINGS.

So now Alex and Marta are telling me that some people think this is bad writing. I find that baffling. It's awesome writing, for myriad reasons. It was a legit amazing, shocking moment, it provides some compelling character drama in a long-lasting way, and it proves that no one is safe on this show (except lol, jk, people are totally safe, Elena is safe and Damon is safe I know apparently fandom is theorizing his death but I DON'T CARE DAMON IS NOT GOING TO DIE AT LEAST NOT PERMANENTLY WHAT SHOW DO YOU THINK THIS IS).

So, great writing choice. But also, tragic, because, well...Jeremy Gilbert. Heaven help me, but I love that kid.

Let's move on, because there's just too many things to say and feel about the Littlest Gilbert. Ah, Jeremy. We'll always have you Hulk-ripping your shirt off.

Ok, briefly, a quick list of the things from the last few episodes that I wanted to talk about but didn't mange to:

~I love that they actually killed Kol. Sorry, Kol stans. But this was a bold move, and I always love bold moves.

~Related to that, because oh my, it really has been ages since I've posted about TVD, the Kol compulsion of Damon was clever as fuck. Because compelling him to kill Jeremy, fine, cool. Compelling Damon to NOT REMEMBER THE COMPULSION? OOOOOOOH GOOD MOVE. That was when I got all "oh noes!" about it. I love that.

~And as a subset of that, I know people have probably all discussed this by now, but whatever, I've been absent. I was curious about that whole Kol speech about Damon secretly wanting Jeremy dead so Elena would give herself over to vampirism, because tbh, that argument didn't make any sense to me in terms of Damon's character, but then I wondered if we were supposed to take it as vaguely credible, because why else would it be in there? But then Damon figured out the compulsion, and it occurred to me that the only way he would realize that he'd been compelled to kill Jeremy is if that impulse was a foreign one to him. Idk why I'm bringing this up now. This is just another random thought I had while driving. Because all my TVD thoughts happen while I'm driving. But really. I drive a lot.

~My FAVOURITE THING EVER is Damon and Elena fighting. And Damon self-sabotaging out of his deep-set self-loathing. It's like candy to me. So imagine my delight at their fight last week. I loved every second of it. Because I am a horrible shipper who is a thousand times more pleased when they're arguing than when Elena's declaring her love for him. What am I, though. But my favourite line? "Face reality, Elena. We don't work." WE DON'T WORK. JUST. WHY DO I LOVE THIS SO MUCH. WORST SHIPPER EVER. OHHHHHH BUT I LOVE IT.

~So the island is hilarious, no? I mean. The best part was how Jeremy's tattoo completes, and then come the next episode they are all just suddenly on this random Canadian island, no discussion, no anything. Just, this is a thing that has happened, let's move on. Did no one else find this legit hilarious?

~Oh man, I had all these things to say about Bonnie and what Shane is doing to her and how interesting this arc is, but now it just sort of feels too late? I missed my shot, and things move so fast in TVD that there are just too many other things to talk about. But let me just say, I was so into the divine creepiness of Shane telling Bonnie that "you're in control" WHILE he's mindfucking her and essentially hypno-controlling her. EERIE AND UNSETTLING AND AWESOME. Also, Bonnie standing up for herself and saying fuck you to all these people who think she can't handle herself are the best. Kindly fuck off, Bonnie-doubters.

~As previously mentioned, the Hulk!Jeremy shirt ripping is one of the better things to come out of TVD. Straight up lolarious. Sometimes this show is just the crack thrill ride of the ages.

Ok, so as for this episode, because at least I can remember what actually happened in this ep:

~I was going to say that this new hunter dude could stay and maybe bone Damon or something, but Marta has just now informed me that he is apparently an awful human? I hate it when actors ruin characters.

~Damon being tied up and tortured is just my thing, man. WHY YES, THESE ARE MY LIFE CHOICES.

~Something I am not interested in? A legit Stefan/Rebekah romance. My feelings on these two are complicated and jumbled and nonsensical, but the one thing I've been pretty sure of is that I'm not interested in Stefan and Rebekah *falling in love.* And I'm not sure if the show is planning on doing that, but Rebekah's little wounded look when Elena and Stefan were bonding was a slight cause of alarm. I'm keeping my eye on you, show.

~Guys, Silas was legit creepy! Like, nicely done, show. The look of it was genuinely unsettling. Just, the image of a totally dried up, rather eerie Silas, chained up in this was a little frightening to watch in the middle of the night. This show rarely scares me, so I always appreciate it when it does.

~So ever since I read the episode description a few weeks ago (because I have no self-control), I've been theorizing on what this 'shocking new information about the cure' could be. And honestly, there weren't all that many things that could have an emotional impact, so this business about there only being enough cure for one person to take it had already occurred to me. So, whatever. I'm 90% sure the cure is going to go to Damon, because they've made such a big deal about him NOT wanting the cure. And because my wikipedia-ing of the book series (I can't be fucked to read them because I can't be fucked and the snippets I've read in airport bookshops have been embarrassingly bad) mentioned that at some point Damon accidentally gets turned human (by some flower thing? WHATEVER. Please, show, don't try to pay any more "homage" to the books). I was rather hoping that these apparently crazy last ten minutes would just show Damon getting cured, because I am more than ready for this cure business to be over so we can just deal with the fallout and move on. Not to mention that I was all like, "yeah, whatever, show, I have called all your tricks, maybe I'm finally beyond TVD being able to shock me." But then Jeremy died, so, lol, nope. Huzzah! I love being shocked by TVD.

~Though I did sort of call the Katherine thing. Not until someone attacked Elena, of course, but the problem with these kinds of shows is, at a certain point, there's a limit to what can happen that will actually be emotionally effective. So if someone is going to unexpectedly show up somewhere, well, there are only so many people it could be that we will actually care about. Katherine is one of those people.

~HOWEVER. While I am all for Katherine being back and having some sort of nefarious plan, I DO NOT WANT Katherine to secretly want the cure or something. I do not care for the idea that all these badass vampires just want to be human deep down. Fuck that. So she can have the cure to use it for her own purposes. But no Katherine pining for the blessed humanity please.

~Bless the fact that someone has finally thought to address Caroline's opinions on the cure. That was long overdue. However...


~I enjoyed the Caro/Tyler well enough in this episode. As I've said before (because I do tend to repeat myself), Caroline and Tyler are at their best when they're just being a normal, functional couple. That is when I have feels for them.

~I can't be too distraught about Tyler leaving, though. It's just his annual mid-season "I'm just going to fuck off for a while now." He really does do it every year. He'll be back.

~This episode was sort of a clusterfuck. Intentionally, of course. But by the end, when everyone was scattered and running around and TOTALLY USELESS, I just sort of had to lol. This is what happens when you leave Damon upstairs, people.

~So let's talk about Damon staying upstairs. I loved the fuck out of this. I loved everything about Damon in this episode. And no one was surprised. But I really do love the sort of laissez-faire fuck it attitude he had going on right here. He's just sort of letting it all happen for once. Damon is an extraordinarily willful guy, and we all know how much I love that he gets things done. But this cure business is hard for him. Because he wants Elena to have everything she wants, but he also patently does not want any of it for himself. The cure and all that it involves are in direct opposition to what Damon wants for himself and his future. And here's where it gets interesting. Because he could be selfish and take what he wants and try to make Elena choose him and vampirism and a potential sire bonded existence and all that disaster. Or he could be selfless and do everything he can to get Elena that cure, thereby screwing himself over (because Damon, in all his self-depricating glory, really does believe that when Elena turns human and the sire bond is broken, she will no longer want him. Or maybe she still would, but then she would be with him and slowly realize all the things he already knows about himself, and THEN she wouldn't want him. Either way, Damon just cannot imagine a scenario in which Elena would, in her right mind and for the long haul, want to be with him.). And he's done as much as he can to help her. Because making Elena happy really is the only way that he can be happy too. But at a certain point, it's just become too much. He's gotten her to the cure, he's fought for it and cleared the path and done all he can. But then he's sitting at the finish line, broken and bloodied and miserable, and he just can't push anymore. He's delivered on his promise, he's gotten her there, but he just can't go any further. Because he can't be there and not choose. If he's in a room with Elena and the cure, he will finally have to decide to be selfish or selfless, to choose his own desires or her own. So he takes himself out of it. He paves the way for everyone, and then lets them make their own decisions. Because sometimes, not choosing is a choice in and of itself.

~Related to this, I think him finally relinquishing control is significant. Because the first thing I thought of when he said this was the sire bond. Damon has always tried to control everything, to fit everything into his own view of how things should go. Then this sire bond happened, and he got a taste of what it would be like to really have the ability to control everything. And he found that he didn't care for it. A defining character trait for Damon is that he wants things to be real. And the sire bond made him realize that controlling things interferes with that. So for once, he's just going to let it all happen around him. He may lose - he'll probably lose - but it'll be real.

~There's not much else to say, really. The mise-en-scene in this episode was really stellar. The blood dripping down onto Silas was a fantastically creepy image. And the second Grams showed up, I knew it was all manipulation, because there's no way that Grams would be ok with a mass raising of the dead. So how is Silas mindfucking everybody? Spooky stuff, man.

~Bonnie having to watch helplessly as Jeremy died was heartwrenching. Just. Ouch.

JEREMYYYYYYYYYYY. I will never recover from this.

But hey, it was a pretty good episode! By which I mean it was a crazycakes episode, and those are always fun times.

tvd, the vampire diaries, episode reaction post!, my time where did it go, watching the sun rise as i type

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