Gimme Some VD: “Dead Man on Campus”

Previously on Vampire Diaries: Half of this show’s most annoying characters kicked it!

Ding dong, Silas is gone! Hopefully for good, although with this show, you never know. It does seem like we’re moving into an new arc for now in which the Augustine society will be the big bad. And I’m okay with that.

Jesse's fate

To that end, we finally find out what Professor Jerkface has been up to with poor Jesse when he injects him with something he calls “Augustine blood.” This not only gifts Jesse with enough super strength to escape, but also infects him with an uncontrollable craving for vampire blood instead of human blood. Yay, science?

As soon as Jesse escapes, he calls Caroline in a panic, afraid he’s going to eat Aaron — who coincidentally turns out to be his roommate. Why he wasn’t worried about also eating Caroline, I don’t know. But luckily for him, she’s exactly the right person to call, giving him a crash course on Vamp 101, and even introducing him to some of the perks by showing him how to heal his roommate. Caroline is such a great vampire mentor, guys.

Caroline helps Jesse

(Interestingly, Elena — who shows up with some blood bags to donate to the cause — now seems to think being a vampire is just the bees knees. I guess all her angst of last season has been completely dealt with and she no longer feels sad about never getting to age or have children? I mean, don’t get me wrong, I was tired of the angst. It just seems abrupt, is all.)

Elsewhere on campus: Bonnie’s corporeal again, enrolled in classes, and in possession of an amazing haircut. (That’s two in one week — does this mean the super long hair trend is finally ending? BECAUSE I AM INTO THAT.) She’s also dodging her mom, who I’m not even sure knows her dad is dead? Way to keep in touch, Bonnie’s mom.

Anyway, to celebrate her return to the semi-living, Caroline and Elena are planning to throw her a party in their cavernous, gothic dorm. It’s nice to see all three of them momentarily happy. Although this is Vampire Diaries, so you know that just means something extra terrible is about to go down.

Bonnie hair cut2

Bonnie’s also keeping the downside of being the anchor to herself, even after the spirit of a nice old lady witch has her screaming in agony in the middle of the quad. Well, that kind of thing in the middle of class is really going to do wonders for your social life, Bonnie. Good thing you’re already in school with your two besties.

Back in Mystic, Katherine’s still dying and Stefan’s still having severe PTSD drowning flashbacks. These two plot strands end up intersecting in a surprisingly affecting way when she pulls him into Matt’s possession drama. For yes, Cute!Matt is still on this show! (I know! It’s been so long, I’d almost forgotten him!) While tending bar for a depressed Katherine — I guess in  Mystic Falls, you don’t have to be 21 to serve alcohol? — he spills about his missing time and the mysterious and beautiful Romanian girl who following him home and screwed up his life.

Katherine and Nadia

Katherine quickly realizes he’s talking about her daughter, and — with Stefan and Nadia’s help — gets Gregor to manifest and admit that his true mission was to use Nadia to kill Katherine. Nadia’s hurt and upset when Katherine responds to this revelation by stabbing Matt to expel Gregor, but honestly, girl? You can do better than a disembodied presence possessing a boy barely out of high school to murder your mom.

I should note, also, that drunk!Katherine with nothing left to lose is super amusing. Not to mention bad ass. When Stefan has another flashback episode and attacks her, she talks him through it even while being strangled. I guess that kind of counts as therapy? Not sure listing off the people you’ve killed is an approved technique, but hey, whatever works.

Katherine jumps

Then again, after saving her from an attempt to kill herself by throwing herself off the clock town, he, in turn, gives her an anti-suicide pep talk that literally amounts to “suck it up.” So I guess approved psychiatric methods are just not on the table for these two.

In any case, both of them seem to feel better after getting the other’s advice, and if the “universe” works out its Silas/Amara shipping needs by throwing Stefan and Katherine back together, I would actually not hate it. He’s 80% less annoying with her than he is with Elena, anyway.

Katherine and Stefan

Katherine and Stefan2

Back on campus: while Bonnie’s party is going on, Elena sends Damon off to interrogate Jerkface about what he did to Jesse. Caroline actually gives Elena some solid advice about recognizing who Damon really is, i.e. a stone cold killer. And that’s true, but… watching him call Jerkface on his Mengele crap while injecting him with various viruses in the lab was pretty fun.

Jerkface eventually explains that he’s just trying to even the playing field by making monsters into monster hunters. Which sounds good in theory until you remember that he had no problem killing one of his human students to help his research. Speaking of which, Jesse accidentally gets a taste of Caroline’s blood, runs back to the lab in a panic over his vampire blood lust, and then can’t stop himself from going after Damon. Which is when Elena shows up and stakes him. Thanks for living down to my expectations, Vampire Diaries.

Caroline dead Jesse

Elena saves Damon

Caroline’s less than pleased with this typical lack of care with the life of anyone who’s not a main character. But, you know… glass houses and all, Ms. Forbes. By the end of the episode, she’s come around to forgiving Elena, but there’s still some tension there about Damon. I’m sure that’s foreshadowing something, but frankly, I can’t bring myself to care all that much.

While all this drama’s going on, Bonnie gets another visit from the nice old lady witch spirit who passed through her earlier. This time, they have a friendly chat. I guess it’s nice she can have spirit friends now? Later, when she’s about to get busy with Jeremy, Jesse’s spirit appears. So Bonnie finally has to come clean about the agonizing pain she feels when ghosts cross over. Blah blah, it’s worth it to be able to bone you again, Jeremy. Ew.

Damon captured

Finally, we end with a plot twist! Damon’s still torturing Jerkface in the lab when he finds a bag of the Augustine blood and recognizes the name. It seems 60 years ago, Damon was one of the Augustine lab rats! As he realizes this, obviously freaked out, Jerkface manages to capture him; later, Damon wakes up in a cell with his initials carved into the wall. Creepy!

Next time: Victor Lord Jr. is a mad scientist!

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One thought on “Gimme Some VD: “Dead Man on Campus”

  1. Katherine is my spirit animal. I love her so much. She is 100% better at everything she does than Elena. It’s weird how Nina Dobrev can play my fave and least fave chars at the same time, but it goes to show you just how awesome she is.

    And yes, I agree… the idea of LISTING everyone you’ve murdered in chronological order as a coping technique is SO twisted yet… appropriate somehow!

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