Each week, The Vampire Diaries is making it more and more difficult to pick the five best moments/scenes of the episode because there are just so many of them. Obviously that’s a good thing – the show is firing on all cylinders for the first time in ages and it’s so fun to watch.
“Black Hole Sun” continued the season’s trend of focusing on the characters and their motivations and it definitely hurt my heart a lot (another trend lately or always – I love these fictional people, okay?). Flashbacks to 1994 showed us what happened between the Salvatore brothers the last time they were together before the events of the pilot and as expected, things didn’t exactly go well for their relationship.
In alternate reality 1994, Damon and Bonnie learned more about Kai while Matt got new insights into Tripp in present day Mystic Falls. Alaric is still a terrible flirt thanks to his blood lust and Jeremy finally unleashed his anger in a productive way while Stefan and Elena ventured out on an eye opening road trip. Let’s talk about everything:
5. Honorable Mentions
-Sarah, the girl Elena attacked, who later hooked up with Jeremy and knows Elena and Caroline are vampires, is actually a Salvatore. It turns out she’s the daughter of Uncle/Nephew Zach and Damon killed her mother (and eventually her father). I love that they did a callback to season one and brought Zach back for the flashbacks, but I’m going to remain on the fence over Sarah because she hasn’t impressed me yet so her being a Salvatore is not my favorite thing (I reserve the right to change my mind).
-After striking out with Dr. Jo, Alaric brought Jeremy out to the woods to beat some sense into him (or remind him that he’s strong?). Jeremy snapped and admitted that he’s angry because people treat him like he shouldn’t be angry and he’s bitter everyone got to be alive except Bonnie (and Damon, Jer). Alaric retorted with all the reasons he’s bitter (he included missing Damon, you guys – my heart) and told Jeremy that they just had to find a way to get through it and keep going. I never get tired of messed up paternal figure Alaric so I loved these scenes. Will this finally be the end of mopey Jeremy? We can hope.
-Matt pretended to bond with Tripp over Jay’s death. Tripp wanted to take him on a field trip and as they were driving, he told Matt that his wife died in a car accident. But then he explained that when he returned to Mystic Falls recently, a lot of things started to come back to him, including the fact that a vampire killed his wife and compelled him to blame himself. That’s pretty cold – and was probably Damon, right? Then he showed Matt his latest capture and explained that he wanted Enzo to name all the vampires he knew (good excuse for keeping him alive, but Enzo is a soldier and an Augustine survivor so he’s not going to be spilling secrets, Tripp Fell).
4. Guess Who Didn’t Die?
I have to give major props to the writers for this one because I didn’t see it coming. A not-so-dead Ivy tracked Stefan down at the garage to talk about her raging hunger (did she eat Stefan’s boss?). Apparently Stefan’s “friend” fed her his blood before he killed her. I do have to take back some of my praise from two weeks ago over the writers being quick to kill off guest stars when the canvas is too crowded, but I’m not even mad because I was so genuinely surprised by this. What were you thinking, Enzo? This should be an interesting mess for Stefan to deal with next week and he’s going to recruit Caroline to help so win-win.
3. Fun and Pain with Stefan and Elena
The road trip started off on a super fun note – Stefan teaching Elena how he rebuilds his life all the time. She mocked him for having health insurance (I did too) and then Stefan borrowed her daylight ring to make a show out of proposing to her in a bar. Elena played along, asking if it was only because she was pregnant and the two continued to add ridiculous details until she said yes. The cute moments were enough to convince Elena that Stefan wasn’t miserable and knows what he’s doing. He promised to keep in contact with her (just not the town) and then as soon as she left, Stefan picked a fight with a guy who didn’t celebrate his engagement and let the guy kick his ass until Elena returned and compelled him to leave. Oh Stefan, you’re so not okay.
Elena was not amused that this was part of his life rehab, but Stefan was in no mood for lectures from the girl who had her memories erased. He’d dropped a few passive-aggressive hints earlier in the evening, but this time, he came right out and told Elena the truth: she’d loved Damon and had Alaric compel her because she couldn’t handle living without him. Who would have guessed that Stefan would be the one to shatter Elena’s illusions? This was a great scene and something we don’t often see – someone telling Elena that she made a bad decision or in this case, a weak one.
Naturally, she went home to scold Alaric, but he took it in stride and handed her a journal she’d left for herself. Elena explained why she’d made the decision and told herself Alaric could fix it, but she hoped she wouldn’t ask him to because this was the only way to move on (also, she predicted Caroline would spill the beans). Elena looked at the pictures of her and Damon and then she gave everything back to Alaric and asked him to hold onto it for her. I’m not surprised that she didn’t ask for the memories back – we all know she can’t have them when Damon returns, but this scene still made me sad because these characters are so broken.
2. Kai’s Plan for Bonnie and Damon
In addition to needing to spark Bonnie’s magic, Kai also needed Damon to relive his worst day to figure out why they were there. That’s when we got the story of his return to Mystic Falls, the first time he’d seen Stefan since he left Lexi to die in 1977 and it was the day he killed a pregnant woman. But even after Damon told his story, Kai still didn’t explain why it was important (other than to solve Sarah’s present day paternity mystery for the audience).
We also learned a little about Kai’s past thanks to him playing games with Bonnie’s head and making her do a locator spell that showed a path from Oregon to Mystic Falls – Kai’s path that he took after he murdered his family. And don’t think for one second that he’s sorry about any of it – he described the way he brutally killed each of his siblings and then the Gemini Coven (remember how Enzo and Stefan both referenced them in present day? They’re on the right track after all) banished him to this personal hell and he wants Bonnie and Damon to help him get back so he can continue his rampage and kill the rest of the coven.
Bonnie was not impressed with his psycho motivations and refused to help. That’s when Kai revealed he can absorb magic, but doesn’t have his own (his family called him an abomination). He threatened to steal Bonnie’s magic and kill both of them if they didn’t cooperate, but I have to think that’s just an empty threat. If Kai could get back on his own without them going too, he would have already made his move to take her magic and kill them since he likes killing people so much. I love the way the pieces of this puzzle are slowly unfolding. We know Bonnie needs to use her magic to channel the eclipse, Kai has some witchy device to help – what does Damon have to do to get them home?
Not that I’m in a huge hurry for them to get back to the future because Bonnie and Damon’s dynamic is still the absolute best (or second best in this episode). Damon’s unamused face each time Kai got too close to Bonnie was hilarious and his protectiveness over her will never get old. Their friendship and bond remains strong even when they’re bickering as evidenced by how fast Damon switched from being annoyed with Bonnie to threatening Kai when he had the gall to touch her.
But their best scene of the episode came when Bonnie called Damon out for making pancakes every day because the pregnant woman he killed loved pancakes. And this is why I love Bonnie and Damon together so much – Bonnie does not coddle him or tell him that murder is okay. She was rightfully disgusted by what he did, but she sees that he has remorse and shame and that’s what separates him from Kai and why there’s hope for him (and I’ll just be over here melting into a fangirl puddle).
1. Stefan and Damon Remain the Heart of the Show
People can say this show is centered on a love triangle all they want, but no relationship matters more than Stefan and Damon’s (your arguments are invalid with me). They have loved each other and made each other miserable and they don’t know how to live without each other. Damon telling Bonnie he needed to get back for his brother, Stefan resenting Elena for erasing Damon and then the big reveal (that a lot of us guessed) that the reason Stefan worked in the mechanic shop was because he’d been restoring Damon’s car all this time – my heart was overwhelmed with Salvatore brothers’ feelings. I need these two to be reunited even though I don’t think I’ll be able to survive the moment (at least not without a lot of ugly crying).
So let’s talk about those fateful flashbacks for a moment. Stefan had been chilling in Mystic Falls with Uncle/Nephew Zach and Damon returned because he missed his brother and needed to get in touch with his humanity. Stefan wanted to give him a chance and believe his intentions were good and true because he loves him. But Damon is Damon and he got Zach and his girlfriend off vervain and was feeding from them and erasing their memories. Stefan snapped his neck, stole his daylight ring and locked him in the cellar, only for Damon to escape and kill the pregnant woman to make a point. That’s when Stefan erased Zach’s memories and skipped town, not returning for 15 years.
But first, Stefan called Damon out on ruining his life every chance he gets. Stefan starts over and then Damon shows up and ruins it. There you have it – the reason Stefan is so desperate to pick up the pieces and start again. A part of him expects Damon to show up and ruin it just like always (sobbing). Of course, Damon made some good points too – how much he needed his brother and how he was angry Stefan sent Lexi in 1977 instead of coming to help himself (sobbing). These two are truly better together than apart and they love each other so much, but they constantly fell back into the same cycle of disappointment and misery over the years and now they’ve lost each other again. This episode brought me so much pain because all I want is for Stefan and Damon to be reunited, hug and then get in Damon’s car to take that long overdue road trip (and if Alaric, Bonnie and Caroline are in the backseat, I’m not going to complain…)
Now it’s your turn. What did you guys think of the episode? Were you surprised to see Ivy? What about Kai’s psycho tendencies? Did Elena make the right decision? Are you glad Stefan told her? Where should Stefan and Damon go on their bro road trip? Hit the comments below and share your thoughts, feelings and theories with us!