TV Recaps

‘The Vampire Diaries’ Season 4 Finale: Top 5 OMFG Moments in ‘Graduation’

Photo Credit: The CW

Things will never be the same in Mystic Falls after tonight’s graduation. The Vampire Diaries ended season 4 in only the way they could…with pure chaos. In “Graduation,” the teens of Mystic Falls celebrated graduation with violence, betrayal and a surprise return from the dead.

Let’s see if I can properly run through all the emotions I felt during tonight’s finale: happy, sad, surprised, wooed, worried, terrified, frustrated, depressed, defeated – and this was just in the first fifteen minutes. In true Vampire Diaries season finale fashion, we were all taken on a rollercoaster of emotions and stories weighted with twists and turns that left us gasping for breath by the end of the episode – not to mention that everything that happened tonight will be a launching pad for season five. Speaking of season five… raise your hand if you’re ready for it to start, like tomorrow, perhaps? Fall is so far away. Months and months to torture ourselves with the possibilities of what is to come for our Mystic Falls gang. Before we start thinking about the future, let’s try and rundown everything that happened tonight.

Take a deep breath.

Here we go.

In what is obviously a throwback to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Kol seized graduation and placed his sidekicks throughout the seating area. While some may call it a copycat, I call it paying homage to the greatness that came before you. Also notable: the colors of the Mystic Falls High cap and gowns. While Kol was plotting with his friends, Lexi and Stefan were getting drunk, Caroline was freaking out about graduation, Bonnie was trying to figure out how to decide she was dead, and Elena was crying tears of joy with Alaric and Jeremy. Meanwhile, the vampire hunters were running wild in town as they searched for Silas. They shot Damon up with bullets laced with werewolf venom, threatened to blow up the Mystic Grill (kudos to Alaric saving the day), and tried to blow up Matt.

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

Matt obviously gets a noteworthy mention here because Rebekah has been lusting for the varsity football player since she came to Mystic Falls. She vowed not to let him die and promised that once they survived this, she would take him around the world and all those grand, lovely things. The highlight of their entire moment was Rebekah saying, “The first rule of truly living: do the thing you’re most afraid of,” and laying a much anticipated kiss on Matt. (Fast forward to the end of the episode: Matt told Rebekah his love-life needed to remain vampire free, but he would spend the summer traveling with her. Matt finally got the girl – if only for a summer!)

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

And our second noteworthy mention – or perhaps the one that really matters because it set us aflutter and then broke our hearts in the same moment – belongs to Klaus and Caroline. When Damon was shot with the werewolf venom and facing death, Caroline called Klaus and begged him to come back and save him. Always the gentleman, Klaus arrived (by decapitating one of the witches who were upset with Bonnie with a graduation cap – he took care of the rest as well) and admitted he was already planning on coming after receiving Caroline’s graduation announcement. He had debated gifts, one being a plane ticket to New Orleans, but new she would never say yes. Instead, he is giving her what she truly wants: Tyler. Her boyfriend is now free to come back to Mystic Falls because Klaus understands Tyler is her first love and intends to be her last. Swoooon!

So with the stage set (and ample time to recover from the Caroline and Klaus recap), let’s swing into our top five moments from tonight’s finale; also known as the moments that left you sobbing on your couches and praying for sanity until fall.

5. Everyone said their goodbyes.

The worst part about having your friends come back from the dead is having to say goodbye to them. When it was time for the veil to close, Jeremy went straight to Bonnie – we’ll come back to them later. Meanwhile, Alaric was at the Salvatores, savoring one last moment with his best drinking buddy, Damon. He’s only been back for a day, but he’s already saved Damon’s life multiple times. How do these two live without one another? Alaric congratulated Damon on getting the girl and advised him not to screw it up. Pleased to finally have Alaric’s approval, Damon said it wasn’t possible when they had Alaric watching them… And then Alaric was gone. Just like that we lost our favorite history teacher, former vampire hunter, parent to Jeremy and Elena, and bourbon drinking all over again.

Stefan and Lexi drove out of Mystic Falls with Silas in the back of the car. As if feeling their time was ending, Lexi gave Stefan some much need: start living your own life. She understands that he loves Elena and she’s an epic love in Stefan’s life, but reminded him he has a long time to live and he can have more than one epic love. Move on, she begged him, and then she, too, was gone.

And we all spent the commercial break weeping.

4. Elena chooses Damon.

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

It was a tense episode for Damon and Elena. He gave her the cure as a graduation gift. She then tried to give it to Stefan. And both Salvatores wanted her to have it. Things were especially complicated when Damon was infected with werewolf venom and Elena wanted him to take the cure to survive. Fortunately, Klaus arrived in time to save him.

Once he was healed, Elena confronted Damon on his desire to die instead of being human. Damon reminded her that he is selfish, makes bad choices, hurts her, and would rather die than grow old, die, and leave her. He’ll never change and he’s wrong for her. And in reply, Elena gave the declaration of all declarations and confessed, she’s not sorry for meeting him, he makes her question everything, and made her feel alive in death. She understands he’s terrible and will never change, but she loves him. They embrace and kiss and kiss and keep kissing until we’re all wallowing on our couches in defeat.

The sire bond no longer exists. Elena is truly in love with Damon.

3. Jeremy is alive!

Everyone spent the entire episode unaware that Bonnie was actually dead. She smiled through graduation, hugged her friends closed, and told her father goodbye – only none of them realized it was actually goodbye. And as the veil began to close, Jeremy wanted to be with her and confessed there were so many things he wanted to say to Bonnie, but suddenly couldn’t figure out how to say them. This is where I started weeping for the 27th time. They embraced and kissed and it was lovely and sweet. I started getting all kinds of lovely feels and thinking about how they’d be together on the other side – until Jeremy jerked away and gasped for air.

HE’S ALIVE, YOU GUYS.

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

Bonnie exclaimed her spell worked and he was alive. Whoa. Jeremy was shocked, even more so to learn she was dead. Bonnie asked him to tell everyone she was spending the summer with mother. They were all happy for once. Mystic Falls was relatively at peace. She wanted them to have this moment. She assured Jeremy she would be okay. She has her Gram on the other side. And he can talk to dead people, so they’ll be in touch. With that, Bonnie Bennett walked away, joined Gram, and left the world of the living for good.

2. Katherine gets the cure.

Katherine and Elena finally faced-off in the battle that had been building all season – well, the last four seasons actually. I can’t imagine what it is like to fight yourself, Nina, but you did it wonderfully. The two practically tore one another to pieces, breaking glass with their heads and throwing locker doors at one another. It was in one word: epic. Unfortunately, Katherine got the better of Elena, beating her to her death and shoving a broom handle into her throat. Ouch!

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

Elena began to lose consciousness (and I swear for a second I was terrified they were going to kill Elena and have Katherine pose as her or something completely insane). She flashed back to when she tried to give the cure to Stefan. He told her the cure is hers forever and he’ll never take it. Slipping her hand into her pocket, Elena pulled out the cure and shoved it into Katherine’s mouth, forcing her to choke on it. Katherine hit the floor beside her and began her unconscious transformation to being a human.

(Can we take a moment to admire how beautiful Nina Dobrev looked as both Katherine and Elena after they were brutally beaten? Not even a hair was out of place. Life is so unfair, you guys.)

1. Silas has a doppleganger… and it’s Stefan.

It was mentioned from today’s upfront interviews that Paul Wesley is extremely excited about Stefan’s storyline next season – and now we know why.

Stefan arrived at the quarry to bury Silas, but the bag with his body is empty. Elena aka Silas appeared next to Stefan’s car and told him that the spell that kept him locked up was broken because the witch (Bonnie) that cast it was dead. Confused, Stefan listened on as Silas explained that he created the immortality spell and he can never actually die. Nature must balance himself out, so a version of himself could die. In order for this to happen, Silas needed a shadow self, a doppleganger. Stefan thought the shadow self was Elena, but it was really Stefan. Silas stepped forward, flung Stefan into the crate, locked it, and threw him off the quarry, leaving Silas appearing as Stefan in his place.

What?!

Photo Credit: The CW
Photo Credit: The CW

And that, my friends, was the season four finale. Major kudos to Julie Plec for coming up with such amazing ideas that will change the stories, reinvigorate the show and characters, and have us begging for season five to start now.

What did you think about the finale? What do you think will happen when Katherine reawakens as a human? How long will it take for everyone to realize Stefan isn’t actually Stefan? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

About the author

Amber Cunigan

Amber Cunigan is a sarcastic mid-twenties undergrad, extreme book hoarder, Netflix addict, and reality TV aficionado. She enjoys excessive amounts of chocolate and caffeine, tweeting, and all things Ezra Fitz and Ryan Gosling. When it comes to TV, she expects to be thoroughly entertained and when not, she will slam and mock you, but still tune in next week. She's a glutton for punishment. Basically, she's awesome.

  • Michael

    So I was glad Matt and Rebekah finally got together (so far), sad that Stefan lost Elena because he actually deserves her but she is going through what I like to call a Bella Phase with all her whining and self loathing blah blah blah. Alaric was GREAT! That dude should be back on this show as he is the character I most identify with (and that makes it right? Right?). Overall great! I can’t wait to see how Bonnie comes back from the dead casting lighting spells in Silas general direction!

  • Val

    OMG that season finale was awesome is almost 2 am over here and I just finish watching it (after searching for a working link all over the internet) and can we have season 5 like now please fall is to far away.