TVD 4x15: Who's bringing the marshmallows?

Feb 22, 2013 04:47

Whoa, guys. Honestly, I don't even really know what to say. This episode was a tricky one. I'm feeling a little speechless.

But then I found some speech, and no one was surprised. )

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Comments 16

ever_neutral February 22 2013, 13:06:47 UTC
Yeah, my feelings about the ep couldn't be more of a chaotic mess. Because up until those last 10 minutes it was one of my favorite episodes this show has ever produced. And it still could be. I just. It really depends where they take this arc.

I can agree that Elena essentially switched it off on her own. But that still doesn't do anything for my towering rage about Damon (and Stefan) making the ~magnanimous decision ~for her~ that SHE'S TOO EMOTIONAL AND THEREFORE MUST HAVE HER FEELINGS REMOVED. Like, if/when the sire bond is revealed to be fake after all, the show had still damn well better address the huge abuse of power -- it doesn't make a difference here that Elena may have had agency all along because Damon (and the others) were still operating under the assumption that the sire bond is legit.

But it's also deftly chosen, provided that my firm belief that the sire bond is a fake is correct. Because Damon could have told her to do anything. He could have told her to stop feeling sad. He could have told her to calm down, to ( ... )

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eowyn_315 February 22 2013, 16:51:55 UTC
But that still doesn't do anything for my towering rage about Damon (and Stefan) making the ~magnanimous decision ~for her~ that SHE'S TOO EMOTIONAL AND THEREFORE MUST HAVE HER FEELINGS REMOVED.

IDK... I mean, yeah, Damon telling her to turn it off is crossing a line, but I do think they were right to do something. They're trying to keep Elena from making any kind of life-altering decisions she might regret later on once she'd calmed down. I mean, if burning your house down in a fit of grief isn't too emotional, I don't know what is, so I'm okay with them stepping in (kind of like how I think a person's agency is secondary when they're endangering themselves or other people). Damon using the sire bond to turn off her emotions is NOT okay, but I am fairly confident we'll see that play out as such next ep.

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lynnenne February 23 2013, 22:25:46 UTC
But that still doesn't do anything for my towering rage about Damon (and Stefan) making the ~magnanimous decision ~for her~ that SHE'S TOO EMOTIONAL AND THEREFORE MUST HAVE HER FEELINGS REMOVED.

I actually like this development? Because as much as I love my BBs and want them together, Damon has NEVER respected Elena's autonomy. Or anyone's, really. And so his decision is completely in character for him, because he's not the good guy. He doesn't do the right thing. And so it could lead to relationship conflict that is actually character-based, instead of stemming from some outside source.

(Of course, they had plenty of opportunity to give Stefan/Elena some relationship conflict that was character-based, and they never took advantage of that, so... :P)

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dante_kent March 13 2013, 00:17:56 UTC
You're not alone, man. This episode was kind of a headfuck. But we've discussed it at length, so I'll be brief here.

But that still doesn't do anything for my towering rage about Damon (and Stefan) making the ~magnanimous decision ~for her~ that SHE'S TOO EMOTIONAL AND THEREFORE MUST HAVE HER FEELINGS REMOVED. See, I actually don't entirely agree with this. I'm with you in that it is an abuse of power of a sort, but I don't really think it's the boys trying to control their hysterical woman. I think it's more akin to a family trying to decide whether or not to institutionalize a loved one they fear may hurt herself somehow. It's always an ambiguous situation, because the issue of consent is a serious thing to consider, but ultimately, you have to choose whether the risk is too great. I think the Salvatores were genuinely concerned that Elena wouldn't survive. And it's a hard decision, acting FOR her, but it's also a surprisingly realistic one ( ... )

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upupa_epops February 22 2013, 14:50:19 UTC
You are wise, and I totally just read your review instead of doing my Grown-Up Work. Sadly, I need to return to my Grown-Up Work now, but I just wanted to tell you that you're wise.

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dante_kent March 13 2013, 00:19:00 UTC
I'm so glad I could contribute to your poor life decisions. They are my specialty, after all. ;)

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eowyn_315 February 22 2013, 16:39:19 UTC
Yeah, your thoughts on the sire bond are pretty much why I'm not upset (yet). I reserve the right to rage later on if it does indeed turn out that Elena has had zero agency this entire season, but that scene? Incredible acting and totally ambiguous, lol. I can easily see it going your way.

Survivor's guilt has been the cornerstone of Elena's identity the entire time we've known her. And I think Elena uses the sire bond as an excuse to get out from under that weight - she wants to turn it off, she wants just this once not to have to cope with all those emotions, she wants to be able to say "I'm okay" and mean it. But she can't make that choice herself because turning off her emotions is weakness, that's the easy way out, that's failing Jeremy by not mourning him properly, not to mention that Stefan would (again, still, forever) be disappointed in her, since he's always been opposed to turning one's feelings off. And then Damon invokes the sire bond and it's like a "get out of jail free" card. She can do it and not have to blame ( ... )

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dante_kent March 13 2013, 00:25:10 UTC
OMG THAT ENTIRE PARAGRAPH, THO. I was looking for a line to quote, but I couldn't pick one, because they're ALL brilliant. Yes x1000000 to ALL of it. That's why I kind of love this development, as heart-wrenching and morally difficult as it is. Because Elena has been through so much, and she's soldiered through it all, but I think a part of her has always wanted to just forget it all, and she's never LET herself before. Remember that time in 3x05 when Damon offered to compel Elena to forget what Stefan did to her, and she said she had to remember? Elena has to suffer, has to feel it all, because she feels like she owes that to the world, to the people she's lost, to the people who have died for her. It's the only way she can reconcile her continued survival. And yessss to the fact that turning it off is failing Jeremy (ow ow ow ow ow). But the thing is, deep down, there is no one left to disappoint, no one who really matters. Jeremy was her last family, and he's gone. So if she turns it off, if she takes that out, why would it matter ( ... )

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eowyn_315 March 14 2013, 19:13:53 UTC
Ugh, there is just so much complex amazing stuff going on in this plot twist, PROVIDED THAT the sire bond is not real.

You know, the more I think about it, the more it seems it doesn't matter whether the sire bond is real or not? Because the key here is that Elena wanted to turn it off before anyone said or did anything to influence her decision. She just couldn't bring herself to do it because of her guilt complex. She needed the sire bond (or at least the imagined influence of it) to absolve her of responsibility. Which is probably the most interesting thing they could've done with the sire bond, since they've done compulsion against a person's will so many times already.

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bookishy February 23 2013, 18:11:50 UTC
Hey there. So I have been doing this thing where I spend my Saturday mornings trolling for TVD episode reactions, and it has become a nice pattern for me to find yours and happily lurk-read them. But today I thought that maybe I should put on my big girl internet pants and just say hello and ask if you perhaps wouldn't mind if I friended you?

Elena into turning off her humanity (ugh, humanity) doesn't enrage me nearly as much as it should, because I CANNOT believe in the sire bond. This means that I'm actually super interested in this plotline, because I believe Elena flipping the switch was a choice.

I am standing firmly on the line of "I don't know anything" when it comes to the sire bond, because every time I try to think about it I turn my brain into a pretzel of sadness. But you can make a parallel to Elena telling Jenna to "turn it off" during the ritual at the end of S2 and her taking the suggestion. I don't think it's out of the question that Elena gave in and decided to do it on her own.

It's just that Ian and Nina both ( ... )

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dante_kent March 13 2013, 00:32:53 UTC
So it is highly indicative of the sort of fail I am that it took me weeks to respond to this. But HELLO! What a lovely thing to hear! I'm quite pleased you somehow found my recaps, and you are more then welcome. Of course I wouldn't mind if you friended me! In fact, I'll friend you right back (if my excessive lateness hasn't somehow put you off)!

I am standing firmly on the line of "I don't know anything" when it comes to the sire bond, because every time I try to think about it I turn my brain into a pretzel of sadness.

Ugh, you and me both, honey. I've done a shockingly good job of convincing myself that the sire bond is not real, but I had a moment the other day when I remembered that if the sire bond really is a thing, my world will actually end. Don't do this to me, show. I will not survive it.

But you can make a parallel to Elena telling Jenna to "turn it off" during the ritual at the end of S2 and her taking the suggestion.

Ooh, good call!

The face-touching in this context truly killed me. AAAAHHHH THE FACE TOUCHING ( ... )

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wheatear February 23 2013, 19:25:13 UTC
This means that I'm actually super interested in this plotline, because I believe Elena flipping the switch was a choice.

That's interesting, because I saw it as another confirmation of the sire bond. The D/E shippers like yourself on my f-list are the ones most convinced that the sire bond is fake. I'd like you to be right, I would... I just don't think that's how the show is portraying it.

And on that note, that scene in which the team was arguing about Bonnie's plan was also just phenomenally shot. It had this feel of almost claustrophobic escalating madness that was so perfect for the moment, and I loved every bit of it.

That was indeed awesome!

There were so many things Stefan could have said there, and it makes a difference which one he would have chosen to say at this moment. Did anyone else feel this way? Or are you all pretty confident about what Stefan intended? Enlighten me.

"I love you." That was my instinct.

Who missed Klaus in this ep? Anyone? DIDN'T THINK SO.

I WONDERED WHY HE WASN'T IN TOWN KILLING EVERYONE.

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dante_kent March 13 2013, 00:35:40 UTC
The show is definitely portraying the sire bond as legit. I may be in massive denial about it. It's just such a hideous narrative choice that I simply cannot entertain it until I absolutely, absolutely have to. It will break the English major in me.

I think you're probably right about Stefan meaning "I love you." But I could have done with an "I'm sorry" as well, since Stefan has been fairly terrible to Damon of late. And I don't mean that in a 'poor abused Damon' sort of way. I mean that in a 'Stefan, you're awful too, just embrace it' kind of way.

I WONDERED WHY HE WASN'T IN TOWN KILLING EVERYONE.

MAYBE HE WAS HAVING A BRIEF FIT OF SANITY AND GETTING THE HELL AWAY FROM MYSTIC FALLS, TOWN OF DOOM.

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wheatear March 13 2013, 21:22:46 UTC
It will break the English major in me.

I feel for the English major in you, and hope to be proved wrong.

But I could have done with an "I'm sorry" as well, since Stefan has been fairly terrible to Damon of late.

That would definitely be the main alternative.

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