Previously on Vampire Diaries: KATHERINE! ELIJAAAAAAH!
Welcome back, show! We open on Jeremy appearing to Bonnie as she cries at his grave. OH HEY, LITTLE J. Bonnie’s overjoyed and wonders how this is possible. (Seriously, Bonnie? You had more scenes with your Grams after she died then you did when she was alive. Now is not the time to be acting all shocked by dead people showing up.)
ALSO: DAMN, THE GILBERT PLOT
IS GETTING CROWDED
Ghost!Jeremy doesn’t explain himself, in any case. He’s too busy frantically ordering her to wake up… the reasons for which become clear when she does just that and finds herself on the couch at home, with the room around her on fire. Oops!
Meanwhile, a fire is also going over at Chez Salvatore, because as always, nothing says April in Virginia like a roaring fireplace. Stefan and Damon toss a football back and forth while recapping that it’s now been eight or nine days since Elena last killed someone. Blah, blah, need to get her humanity switch turned back on, blah, blah, Stefan wants to move on and live his own life, blah, blah, Damon believes this about as much as I do.
Across town: the remaining Original siblings are meeting so Rebekah and Klaus can each present their cases for being the one to receive the cure. Since Klaus’ pitch basically boils down to “look, if I don’t help unleash supernatural horror on the world, Silas will just never stop nagging me,” Elijah is inclined to let their sister pursue her happiness instead.
KLAUS TAKES THE NEWS WITH HIS
TYPICAL RESTRAINT AND CLASS.
But first, my special honey-bear wants her to prove she really understands what she’s getting into — by living the entire day as a human. Also, he pronounces “whim” with that pretentious-sounding, breathy “H” and I just love him so much, you guys. NEVER LEAVE US, ELIJAH!
Cue Rebekah recruiting Elena to help her shop for prom dresses. Predictably, Elena thinks pretty much everything about this is stupid. (I… kind of love emotionless!Elena?) But since these two are now apparently roomies — which is another amazing development, by the way — and since Rebekah succeeding in her task is in Elena’s best interest if it takes the cure off the table, she agrees to stay by her side and help her get through the day.
Bonnie and Caroline are also out trying on dresses while the former fills the latter in on her freaky dream fire.
This prompts Caroline to promise her a fun, grief and stress-free “friend prom” with her and Cute!Matt as each other’s dates. That is seriously so adorable I almost can’t stand it.
Elena and Rebekah’s arrival in the shop dampens the mood, though. After some mutual snarking, Caroline leaves her dress at the store to get pressed… but the next time we see it, it’s on Elena as she leaves for the dance. I have to say, I’m not loving her prom hair. Did she get extensions? It’s just a mess. (I’m kind of dying to see Nina Dobrev with shorter hair. Would she be adorable with a bob, or what? Feel free to end any time now, long hair trend!)
Anyway, both Salvatores are waiting to escort her, of course. Elena is clearly so sick of both of them and their bullshit at this point. I feel you, girlfriend!
Meanwhile, Caroline storms into Klaus’ to complain about the prom dress theft — in the process letting it slip that the vervain is finally out of the town’s drinking water. Um, shouldn’t they be pumping that stuff in constantly at this point? Way to be incompetent as usual, town council.
Klaus really could not care less about all this, which is the first time he and I have agreed on something for quite some time. But Caroline bats her eyelashes and begs him to dig up something from the family coffers that will make her “Princess Grace of Monaco hot” — and you know he can’t resist her when she turns on the charm.
Damn their annoying chemistry.
Prom! The theme is “Pictures of You,” which is fitting, because Caroline — in between bio-hazard clean up duty, getting poisoned, and killing witches — has managed to plan prom and curate a photo gallery of class memories. Including pictures of Elena with cute!Matt and her brother. Elena is momentarily stopped short at the sight of them (which was clearly the plan) but soon snaps out of it to regain her emotionless cool.
This spurs on a truth-telling spree of epic proportions, as she goes straight from pointing out how WAY TOO OLD Damon is to be showing up as anyone’s prom date to calling him out for ordering her to turn her emotions off and then getting all pissy when that means she no longer does exactly what he says. Then she runs into the olive branch Matt and Bonnie are extending in her direction and pretty much snaps it into tiny little pieces. Man. She is on a roll and I kind of love it. And by kind of, I mean REALLY. I really love emotionless!Elena. She so satisfyingly practical and honest and mean. (Tact just means not saying true stuff, Elena! Embrace your inner Cordy!)
Ahem. Bonnie retreats from Elena’s smackdown to sadly look at a picture of her and Jeremy. So of course he appears again, wearing a tux and everything. She wants to know if this is real. He doesn’t think it matters. Um, kind of disagree there, Jere? But Bonnie clearly doesn’t! They head off to dance alone. Because, sure. Why not.
Rebekah corners Cute!Matt at the punch bowl, awkwardly trying to figure out if he’s with Bonnie now. She’s also desperately fishing for his approval of her whole humanity plan, but he shuts that right the hell down by informing her in no uncertain terms that she’s not a good person. It’s pretty awesome.
Elsewhere on the floor, Stefan grabs Elena for a dance, much to her annoyance. He seems to be attempting to seduce her into remembering their love, or whatever? But it doesn’t exactly work as planned. Damon looks on, brooding. As you do.
Caroline finally makes her grand entrance in a white, strapless dress that I actually do prefer to the one Elena stole, so point for Klaus’ hidden wardrobe of women’s ballgowns, I guess. (Seriously, does he just travel around with trunks of expensive dresses perfectly fitted to Caroline’s size? Because that is WEIRD, KLAUS.)
Which doesn’t stop Elena from coming over to rub her bitchery in Caroline’s face. But apparently Plan A (aka “kill her with kindness”) extends to everyone, so Caroline is forced to bite her tongue and smile through her burning hatred. Stefan wisely distracts her with a dance, confessing the plan is stirring more feelings in him than Elena. Caroline assures him this pain won’t last forever and one day he’ll wake up and realize he’s already moved on. Right. Like you’re moving on from Tyler, hon?
Poor April has apparently been put in charge of tallying the prom court ballots, and of course Rebekah is trying to strong arm her into rigging the vote in her favor. That’s a totally normal, human thing to do, right? She’s also pretty hilariously indignant when April warns her from trying to use compulsion on her. Yeah, April! Compelling people was so twelve hours ago. Get with time times!
Fortunately, Elena’s under no such compunctions. She casually threatens to kill April — so Rebekah won’t have to, of course (such a giver, this Elena!) — and then drops some BONUS TRUTH on the girl in question when she half-heartedly objects:
ELENA: Remember the time you tortured me until I told you how to find the cure? You ruined my relationship with Stefan, and then you trapped us with a werewolf?
REBEKAH: Yeah… so?
ELENA: So… you’re not a good person. You’re not going to win this cure by being yourself, so just stand there and refrain from talking. Okay?
I think it’s official. Emotionless!Elena is my hero.
Bonnie dances with “Jeremy” out in the woods. But of course it isn’t Jeremy: it’s Silas! Kudos to Steven R. McQueen for changing up his speech patterns just enough to make it clear something is off here. I mean, he sounds hilariously weird hear, so I certainly hope that was deliberate.
Bonnie finally catches on when he starts prompting her that they could be together again if she just did the spell. When she rejects him, the gloves come off and he promises she still needs his help to keep her dumb magic in check. But Bonnie isn’t buying it. Shouldn’t Bonnie be reaching out to some other actual witches for help with this? I mean, I realize the last ones tried to kill her, but maybe she could talk to her mom again?
Elijah hands the white oak stake over to Klaus as a kind of consolation prize for not getting the cure. (He says he got it from Rebekah, but didn’t Silas!Creeps have it last? I can never keep track of the damn thing.) Elijah thinks that Klaus will be all right, no matter what Silas throws at him, but Klaus promises that if he has to run from Silas, he’ll spend his time tracking down Katherine to kill her.
Elijah is as super sick of this bullshit whining as the rest of us and peaces out.
Rebekah has the enormous balls to beg Matt for a dance, since sitting all alone is “a girl’s worst nightmare.” Pretty sure there are plenty of girls — in this town, especially — with much worse nightmares, actually. But cute!Matt takes pity, of course, because he is still both cute and Matt. Rebekah agrees, calling him pretty much her role model of beautiful humanity: loyal, honest, kind, and the one everyone always roots for. Well, that’s certainly all true. Matt is nonplussed by this praise.
Caroline stands on the sidelines with Damon, complaining about how much prom sucks. Damon silently offer his flask in commiseration. Heh.
After taking a swig, Caroline ditches for the after party prep just as Bonnie shows up to warn everyone about Silas’ little visit. Rebekah catches Elena eavesdropping on the group, and wonders why she cares. Turns out Elena’s less concerned with supernatural enemies returning and more worried that if Bonnie gives it, Alaric and Jeremy will just nag her 24/7 about her humanity. Hah! I’d say that’s valid.
(Is it sad that just hearing Alaric’s name is enough to get me excited, still? And hey, it’s not like Matt Davis is busy at the moment.)
It’s time for April to announce the prom king and queen! Rebekah waits in smiling anticipation, because what could be more satisfying than winning a popularity contest when you know no one actually voted for you? But it’s a moot point because April announces the real winners instead. It’s Matt and Bonnie, of course, since even though these kids spend half their time off of supernatural adventures they’re still the coolest kids in school. Watching Bonnie be crowned gives Elena an idea — if Silas can’t do the spell without Bonnie, then all they need to do is kill her! (See? That’s horrible, but at least it makes sense. Emotionless!Elena is a better planner than anyone else on this show, that’s for sure.)
Caroline’s doing party set up at the Matt’s new mayoral mansion when Tyler shows up. HI, TYLER! He claims it’s safe because Klaus can’t get in without an invite. I’d say there’s a pretty obvious flaw in that plan, dear, but we’ll leave that for later. Plus, he couldn’t miss prom! Well, duh. Caroline’s obviously overjoyed, and I’d be happy too, but now, of course, I’m wondering if this is really Tyler.
Except — psych! Silas is really across town pretending to be Stefan so he can mess with Damon’s head… and also stab him in the gut to warn him off Bonnie. Well played, show.
Inside, Rebekah warns Cute!Matt that Elena’s after Bonnie. What squishy little human Matt is supposed to do about it, I don’t know, but it turns out Bonnie is more than capable of defending herself. And nearly tearing the whole party down in the process.
Bonnie flees just as cute!Matt and April come in to see what all the ruckus is about, which is unfortunate, because Elena takes out her frustrations by slamming the latter’s head into a table and taking a chunk out of her neck.
Matt begs Rebekah to save her life with some of her blood, and of course Rebekah can’t do that, because it would break Elijah’s “live human” commandment, and of course Matt is like I’D JUST LIKE TO POINT OUT THAT THIS IS WHY NO ONE THINKS YOU’RE A GOOD PERSON.
Damon finds Stefan out in the woods with a similar chest wound, courtesy of Silas!Damon. Good job, guys.
The opposition thus distracted, Silas!Jeremy finds Bonnie outside and messes with her head some more. She manages to banish him but her distraction is enough to let Elena get the drop on her — but not for long, as Bonnie hulked out on expression is a fairly unstoppable bad ass. In fact, she’s close to killing Elena with her mind when Damon and Stefan show up and finally manage to get through to her.
As Bonnie runs off, Stefan takes the opportunity to knock a weakened Elena out with an injection. I guess Plan B, it is!
April recovers from her 80th near death experience this season while Cute!Matt thanks Rebekah for doing the right thing. He promises not to tell anyone what she did, and even goes so far as to apologize for his earlier assessment of her character. Which… whoah, now, Matty. Let’s not go overboard here.
This is of course everything Rebekah wants to hear. Unfortunately for her, Klaus immediately shows up to piss in her Cheerios, because that is pretty much how he always rolls. She megs him not to tell Elijah, but he thinks she’s going to be one to do it. These scenes are inter-cut with shots of “Rebekah” showing up at Chez Original and doing the exact opposite, however. Elijah hands the cure over just in time to get a frantic call from real!Rebekah and realize he’s been played by Klaus and Silas. Damn, guys. You know this guy can go around looking like anyone. Maybe establish a code word or something?
Tyler and Caroline slow dance alone together at the mansion. Caroline understands he has to go, but thanks him sweetly for the best prom ever. Aw!
Of course, as soon as Tyler steps foot outside the house, Klaus is there, wanting to know if it was worth it just to see her smile. THIS IS THAT FLAW, I WAS TELLING YOU ABOUT, TYLER. For Caroline’s sake, however, he gives Tyler a five second grace period to get out of his sight. Tyler takes it. (Aw, Klaus. Congrats on meeting the minimum standards of decency. Would you like a cookie?)
Damon and Stefan lock up a passed out Elena in the family dungeon. Damon points out that she was scared when Bonnie was killing her, and fear is an emotion. So now we’re onto Plan C: make Elena miserable! Great.
Klaus returns home to find a letter from Katherine setting up next week’s backdoor pilot for the Originals spin-off. Words really cannot express how little I’m looking forward to that.
Finally, Bonnie finds Silas down in one of Mystic’s many fine cave dungeons. She wants him dead, but wants him to reveal his true self first. Silas explains that part of the curse on him was ensuring no woman would ever want him again. Then he comes out of the shadows just enough to tease us with a split-second glimpse of some pretty deformed facial features before the screen goes black. So this is some straight up Phantom of the Opera territory we’re heading into now?
Next time: New Orleans! Klaus! Some Other Dude! A complete absence of any of the plots I actually care about!