Kai: And then I went to Disneyland and peed on all the robots! And then I went to Chuck E Cheese and pooped in the ball pit! And then I went to the White House, and got all the way to the Oval Office, and then I–
Damon Salvatore: If you say one word about a cigar, I will murder you with my eyebrows.
Bonnie Bennett: Damon, no! We need this guy to escape the perpetual hell that is your plaid shirt and my skorteralls!
Damon Salvatore: …You are so lucky that I experienced so much personal growth last season.
Damon Salvatore: Hi Stefan! I’m here to make amends!
Stefan Salvatore: I don’t know … the last time I let you back into my life you tried to murder my best friend, and you did murder like three dozen sorority’s worth of cute young girls!
Damon Salvatore: What if I promised not to do that this time!
Stefan Salvatore: Okay then! Welcome home!
Uncle Zach Salvatore: Hi Damon! I sure hope you don’t murder me!
Elena Gilbert: Hi Stefan! Thanks for helping me track down the innocent girl I almost murdered!
Stefan Salvatore: No problem! Except I’m all broody about how Enzo got to kill my girlfriend instead of me, and now I want to go away and sulk!
Elena Gilbert: Stefan, that’s crazy! This is your home! I mean, sure, you can’t actually cross into its borders without being murdered to death by a wiccan spell, and yeah, this is the one place on earth where pretty much everybody knows your a vampire and wants to kill you, and okay, this place has tons of terrible, terrible memories that must haunt your every waking and sleeping moment, but it’s also where you took me to my first costume ball!
Stefan Salvatore: Sorry babe, I’m on a real James Dean kick today! No strings, no attachments, nothing but open road and lots of STDs!
Elena Gilbert: That sounds like fun! I wanna come! And if you don’t let me I will stalk you to the ends of the earth, ripping the life from everybody that gives you warmth, comfort, or shelter!
Stefan Salvatore: Well when you put it like that, let’s go!
Elena Gilbert: Yippee!
Stefan Salvatore: But wait! What about the innocent girl you almost murdered!
Elena Gilbert: Don’t worry! We have an Original Vampire, the Sheriff, my brother the ex vampire hunter, and Matt, who is the captain of the local vigilante force, all out looking for her innocent little head!
Stefan Salvatore: This was a great town!
Jeremy Gilbert: HWWWWWWAAAAARRRRRFFFFFF!
Alaric Saltzman (on the phone): Hi Matt! I’m babysitting Jeremy, who tried to kill himself with the Salvatore’s liquor cabinet last night!
Matt Donovan (on the phone): Hi Alaric! I’m going into the lair of the latest bad guy who would be the good guy on literally any other show!
Dr. Prof. Jo, MD, PHD, Starbucks Barrista: I guys! What can I go for you?
Jeremy Gilbert: HWWWWWWAAAAARRRRRFFFFFF!
Dr. Prof. Jo, MD, PHD, Starbucks Barrista: Right, one STD panel, coming up.
Tripp Fell (on the phone): Hi Karen! Sorry you kid was mauled to death by pumas last night!
Matt Donovan: Pumas. Yes. Pumas. That is what happened. Totally pumas.
Kai: Okay Damon, here’s what we’re gonna do! You’re gonna tell me about the worst atrocity you ever committed, and I’m gonna lay here on the couch playing with my slap bracelet!
Damon Salvatore: You do realize I’ve had almost two hundred years to learn the intimate details of pain, suffering, and woe, right?
Bonnie Bennett: Damon, no! If you just torture the information out of him, we’ll miss crucial exposition!
Damon Salvatore: Fine. Once upon a time …
Stefan Salvatore: Hi Damon! Want some bunny blood?
Damon Salvatore: Yeah, no, I think I’m gonna go murder that pregnant lady a ton.
Kai: Wow, you murdered a pregnant lady!
Bonnie Bennett: I can’t believe you murdered a pregnant lady!
Damon Salvatore: I didn’t just murder a pregnant lady … for example, I’m gonna murder the ever loving shit out of you if I’m not home in time for The Flash.
Elena Gilbert: Okay Stefan! Show me how you start a brand new life!
Stefan Salvatore: Okay, first let’s talk about 401(k)s. A 401(k) is a lot like an IRA, except your employer can match–
Elena Gilbert: Um, I thought “starting over” was a euphemism for lots of drinking, sex, and violence.
Stefan Salvatore: … your employer can match the funds you add in, which means your principle grows at twice the normal rate. That’s important because …
Dr. Prof. Jo, MD, PHD, Starbucks Barrista: Hi Alaric! Your quasi-adopted kid is going to be fine! And I’d like to provide you with another one!
Alaric Saltzman: Yeah, sorry, I’m going to stare at that kid with the bloody nose with something bordering on homoerotic tension.
Dr. Prof. Jo, MD, PHD, Starbucks Barrista: Alaric Saltzman! I cannot believe that the sight of spurting blood could distract you from my wit, charm, and bangs! Good day sir!
Elena Gilbert: Stefan, I’m really worried that the innocent girl I almost killed to death is going to do something inconvenient to me!
Stefan Salvatore: The great thing about being immortal is that even if that innocent girl is rude enough to try and stop you from murdering again, we’ll totally outlive her! All we have to do is skip town, change our names, invent new lives, and wait for the unrelenting claws of time to rip the vitality from her dusty corpse!
Elena Gilbert: That sounds like fun!
Stefan Salvatore: Hey, I’ve got a game we could play! Why don’t you pretend to be Elena Williams, and I’ll pretend to be Stefan Cooper, and we’ll pretend to be in love!
Elena Gilbert: And I’ll pretend to be pregnant! Except I won’t stop drinking!
Stefan Salvatore: And I’ll pretend I don’t see you doing sex to my brother ever time I close my eyes!
Elena Gilbert: And I’ll pretend I didn’t see the way my best friend was making googley eyes at you!
Stefan Salvatore: Yay! She said yes!
Beauty Queen Forbes: Hi Damon! This is my daughter Caroline! She’s three!
Damon Salvatore: I am totally going to murder her in a few years!
Stefan Salvatore: Hi Gail! I can’t help but notice that you have tiny little fang marks on your wrist!
Gail: I know! Someone really needs to do something about the rabid beaver problem in Mystic Falls!
Stefan Salvatore: Hey Damon!
Damon Salvatore: Hi Stefan! Can I interest you in–
Stefan Salvatore: Super vampire protecting the people I love by breaking your neck powers activate!
Kai: Okay Bonnie, we need a Plot Device to escape from the Day That Never Ends, so let’s get that tracking spell going!
Bonnie Bennett: This tracking spell is like a rocket, and the Plot Device is in your pocket!
Damon Salvatore: Does he need both of his arms to get us home? Because I really think I should rip off at least one of them.
Kai: Hey, in an interesting development, I am now ready to show you guys how to escape this unending hell!
Stefan Salvatore: Hi Damon! I have broken your neck and taking your Magic Ring on Not Exploding in the Sunlight, and I plan to keep you prisoner until you promise to be a good boy!
Damon Salvatore: Alternately, we could go on a road trip, you could stop eating bunnies, and we could act like vampires instead of pansies!
Stefan Salvatore: Or, I could lock you in this woodshed for the next seventy years!
Damon Salvatore: You do know there’s a back door, right? And that I can get out of here as soon as the sun goes down? And that I’m going to murder literally everyone inside the Castle as soon as I do?
Stefan Salvatore: What? I didn’t hear that? Did you say something important?
Stefan Salvatore: And then I was an ambulance driver! And then I was a janitor! And then I was a mechanic!
Elena Gilbert: Stefan, it’s almost like you’re choosing the most terrible circumstances for yourself, in some kind of lame form of self-flagellation!
Stefan Salvatore: Yeah, no, I’m not going to flagellate myself for another couple of scenes.
Bonnie Bennett: Hey Damon! Look at what I happened to stumble across! This newspaper article says that Kai murdered his whole family a ton!
Damon Salvatore: We should probably be super judgey about his crimes!
Bonnie Bennett: That’s what I was thinking!
Kai: I’m standing right here you know. I can hear everything you’re saying.
Damon Salvatore: Eyebrow glare.
Alaric Saltzman: Hi Jeremy! I’m going to help you overcome your alcohol dependency with violence!
Jeremy Gilbert: I drink because I hurt!
Alaric Saltzman: Yeah, Alaric? My wife left me for my best friend, who killed her and turned her into a vampire and killed her again. Then your aunt died. Then my next girlfriend left. Then I got turned into a vampire. Then I got killed. Then I came back. And now I can’t even get into that cute doctor’s scrubs because she smells like blood all the time and I really, really want to rip her throat out with me teeth.
Jeremy Gilbert: Oh yeah? Well I was a stoner who got turned into a straight-A student by a guy who only did it so he could bang my sister! And my parents, who were apparently vampire-hunting medical professionals, died in a river! The same river my sister died in, but it’s okay, she had vampire blood in her system. So instead of losing her, I just want to muder her a ton, because I got turned int a vampire hunter by some strange combination of magic and plot reaons! And my girlfriend, who was a witch but then died but then came back, was the link to the *~*The Other Side*~*, and that’s why you’re still alive, but she’s dead, and she broke up with me over voicemail. And I didn’t even check my messages for three days! Because who the hell leaves voicemail anymore? Text me, or snapchat, or leave me a Vine, or something, but Jesus, a fucking voicemail?
Alaric Saltzman: So … beer?
Elena Gilbert: Okay Stefan, this was fun, but I’m going to go back to ruining the lives of everybody around me!
Stefan Salvatore: Awesome! And I’m gonna go let that guy at the bar beat me up as punishment for my sins!
Meathead Marv: Punch kick smash break pommel throttle stomp!
Stefan Salvatore: That’s the spirit!
Elena Gilbert: Stefan! This is the most messed up thing you’ve done in days!
Bonnie Bennett: Okay, there’s no way I’m letting Kai out of his prison.
Damon Salvatore: Bonnie, be reasonable! It’s not like you haven’t helped serial killers before! I mean, your best friend is responsible for the deaths of like two dozen people! And your other best friend ate half the Sheriffs in Mystic Falls! And my brother is the most famed serial killer in America today, leaving a bloody trail from sorority house to sorority house! And I killed my Uncle Zach’s pregnant girlfriend, and everyone staying at the boarding house, and some random passers-by, and the milk man, and the mail man, and the maid, and a bunch of kittens!
Bonnie Bennett: …
Damon Salvatore: Maybe I should have kept that last part to myself.
Matt Donovan: Hi Tripp! Have you ever thought that maybe all these puma attacks were caused by vampires?
Tripp Fell: Your ideas intrigue me, and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter!
Elena Gilbert: Stefan Salvatore! You can’t walk through the world letting meatheads beat you up! You need to develop a coping mechanism!
Stefan Salvatore: Yeah, kind of like you had Alaric compel you to forget that you loved Damon with all of your heart and all of your vajayjay and how he was your sweetie and your besties and the sun in your morning sky?
Elena Gilbert: … you’re so silly!
Matt Donovan: Hey Tripp, I can’t help but think that it looks like you’re dragging me out into the woods to molest and then kill me!
Tripp Fell: What? No! I brought you here to watch me molest and murder Enzo! Right after her sells out Stefan and Elena and Damon and Caroline and Alaric and basically everyone on this show, because they’re the good guys lol!
Sarah: Hi Jeremy! Funny story, but I think the people who own this house murdered my mother a ton!
Elena Gilbert: Alaric Saltzman, I am super angry at you for going along with my terrible plan!
Alaric Saltzman: Yeah, here, read this:
Elena Gilbert (in her journal): Dear me, Hi Elena! It’s your diary! Don’t be angry at Alaric for going along with your terrible plan! Everyone always goes along with your terrible plans! But it’s cool! Alaric can restore your love for Damon just as soon as he gets back from May 10, 1994 … I hope he hasn’t fallen in love with Bonnie or anything crazy like that lol! – xoxo me
Bonnie Bennett: Damon, I have come to a conclusion! That pregnant lady you killed loved pancakes! And you make pancacke every day! And I think that’s your way of showing remorse! And I think that means I’m in love with you! And also we need to escape this living hell, trap Kai, and live our our passion and torrid lust together!
Kai: Hey guys! That’s a cool idea and all, but I think this would be a good time to let you know that I can steal people’s magic! And light things on fire with my brain! And if I kill Bonnie and steal her power I’ll be able to free myself from this prison! And that’s probably what I should do because I’m a psychotic murderer who values nothing except what I want, and I really really like murdering, but I think this time I’m going to let you both live, trust you to do what I want, and inevitably get killed by you as soon as we escape the Day that Never Ends!
Damon Salvatore: That’s a great plan! You should go with that!
Ivy: Hi Stefan! I’m a vampire!
The Plot: Thickens.
One of my favorite things about this show is the completely skewed moral compass.
Elena is a murderer, several times over. Damon is a killer par excellance, a monster so vicious that his crimes can only be matched by his brother Stefan, who is like five of the most prolific serial killers in American history. Caroline is a murderer. The Sheriff is on their side.
And the bad guys? Right now the Big Bad’s “crime” is kidnapping the vampire who murdered his wife right in front of his eyes, so he can bring him to justice and ferret out his murdering friends.
It’s insane, and it’s fantastic.
There is one problem, though: when it comes time to show that someone is really terrible, it’s almost impossible.
Kai murdered his family. And that’s bad. They were kids, and that makes it
justifiable worse. But is he really worse than Damon? Or Stefan? And in this episode we learned about Damon’s Worst Day. He killed a pregnant lady, who was loved by a distant relative. Is that really the worst he’s ever done? Is it the worst thing anybody on this show has ever done?
This show makes us root for the bad guys, but that paints them into a corner when it’s time to make us dislike someone because of the bad things they do. We’re so conditioned to cheering for mass murder and wanton slaughter that these atrocities fall just a little flat.
I do like the idea that Stefan wanders America letting drunk rednecks beat him up. That’s the kind of unhealthy coping mechanism a guy like him would develop. I also like the interplay between him and Elena. Stefan really wants her to be miserable with him, doesn’t he?
Another solid episode, and I’m excited to see how Ivy is inevitably murdered, again.
Stefan Salvatore: Hi Greaser Joe! I need a few days off, and someone to take my recently-murdered girlfriend into the woods, bury her body, and leave his fingerprints all over the crime scene!
Greaser Joe: Yeah, no, that doesn’t sound like something I want to do at all!
Stefan Salvatore: ~~~look into my eyes~~~
Greaser Joe: On second thought, Holy fucking shit did you just admit to murder for no good reason?!?
Stefan Salvatore: Of course not! I have a very good reason. That reason is exposition for everyone who missed last week’s episode. Also, I’m kind of lonely and you’re the only person I have to talk to.