Previously on Vampire Diaries: Bonnie kicked ass and took names. Damon approved.
Turns out the fake 1994 time loop is an elaborate witch prison that was specifically constructed for Kai, aka Malakai, who’s actually a squib who can suck magic out of other witches. Kind of like Rogue from the X-Men? Also, he murdered a bunch of his siblings, and if Bonnie and Damon help him escape, he’s going to go home to slaughter the rest of his coven.
EVEN WORSE: HE CREEPS ON BONNIE
But before all that comes out, we take a flashback detour into real 1994 to see “the worst thing Damon’s ever done.” According to Damon, that was: killing Uncle Nephew Zach’s pregnant girlfriend and a bunch of party guests in a fit of pique when Stefan wouldn’t run way with him. Because of course he did. WHY CAN THIS SHOW NEVER LET ME ENJOY DAMON IN PEACE?
(Also, can I just say that while obviously I am against the killing of pregnant women, the idea that this particular murder is so much more heinous than any of the other really heinous murders we’ve seen Damon commit over the years is a little ludicrous. Damon has killed a lot of people, y’all.)
1994 LIZ WAS A SAUCY MINX, THO
Bonnie is naturally horrified to hear this story, and compares Damon to Kai, which obviously bothers him. Later, though, she realizes he’s been making pancakes every morning as an expression of remorse — since dead pregnant lady loved them — and is therefore capable of redemption, unlike Kai. This is about as tortured as Vampire Diaries logic can get, but whatever. GOING WITH IT.
The upshot of all this is that Bonnie refuses to help Kai escape, even if it means she and Damon are stuck in purgatory forever. And while in the past, you might expect Damon to be the one to threaten head-ripping in response, when Kai makes a move on her, we get this delightful bit of protectiveness instead:
DAMON: We might be having a bit of a disagreement, but don’t ever lay a hand on her.
Damnit, show. Why is this so good for me?
In a final twist that I feel like I should have seen coming, Sarah — Elena’s roadside victim and Jeremy’s new fuckbuddy — is actually the daughter of Uncle Nephew Zach and his dead girlfriend. Stefan compelled him to forget she or her mother ever existed, not knowing she’d survive. Does that make her the technical owner of Chez Salvatore? I’m sure she’ll be super pleased to meet the man who murdered both of her parents.
Speaking of Salvatores, back in the real world, Elena browbeats Stefan into showing her his patented system for starting over in a new life. This involves a road trip to his house in Savannah, some fake proposal roleplay, and letting himself get beat up in a bar fight.
STEFAN MAKES HIS OWN FUN
When Elena helpfully explains that he shouldn’t wasting his time grieving for a monster like Damon, Stefan finally loses patience and tells her that she had to make Damon into a monster in her mind to forget her love for him. OH, FOR FUCK’S SAKE. Only Vampire Diaries could juxtapose dialog like that with scenes where we literally watch the same character ripping out a pregnant woman’s throat, just for funsies.
This effing show, I swear.
Also, apparently, Damon’s gift to Elena was showing her her dark side, and I really question why anyone would think that was a good in the same episode where, AGAIN, we saw his dark side involved in some wholesale slaughter of innocents. Elena seems to agree, because after reading a note from herself, she decides to keep her selective amnesia instead of turning back into the hot mess that was dark side Elena.
In the episode’s side plots: Alaric drops some tough love on Jeremy, who apparently drank all the liquor in Chez Salvatore the night before and has no plans to let up on the post-Bonnie pity party any time soon. Alaric suggests that he suck it up (but in a loving, parental way) because he’s not the only one whose life is a never ending shitshow.
Meanwhile, Cute!Matt goes undercover with the vampire hunters, convincing Tripp to show him the secret torture cabin where he’s got Enzo chained up and tragically NOT DEAD. Oh, and it turns out that long ago, some vampire murdered Tripp’s wife and then compelled him to think he’d killed her in a car accident. What are the odds that’s going to end up being Damon’s, fault too?
Sometimes I really hate this show.
In the last scene, Ivy shows up at Stefan’s covered in blood. It seems Enzo fed her some of his before killing her — that makes him a good guy after all, right? Nevermind the fact that he didn’t tell anyone and left her alone to be buried alive and then probably kill a whole a bunch of other innocent people when she woke up all traumatized and hungry. NOPE, I STILL HATE ENZO.
Next time: Corn mazes! Dead bodies! Caroline’s school for baby vampires gets a new pupil!