The last Vampire Diaries of the decade also (ironically) capped off ten episodes of death, witchcraft and drama—MAJOR drama.
Viewers have gone on quite a journey since first setting foot in Mystic Falls and that can be attributed to one thing—consistently solid writing. Show runners Julie Plec and Kevin Williamson aren't content with simply spinning their wheels.
This is the story of Mystic Falls and its inhabitants— living and undead. There's a lot of moving pieces to this story and boy are they moving. I noted in my very first recap for the series just how many characters are being juggled in this show and I can't believe how far we've come with them in only ten chapters.
So, what happened into night's chapter, "The Turning Point?"
First there were vamps, then witches... Now, the ghosts — well, it's actually just one ghost, for now —have come to town. Man, Mystic Falls just can't catch a break.
Proving yet again that the word "stall" doesn't exist in the Vampire Diaries' writers' room, "History Repeating" brought Bonnie's first significant adventure as a witch to a close while also revealing the reason for the timing of Damon's return to Mystic Falls. Hint: It's not for the high-school football.
Halloween may be over but the witches and vamps of Mystic Falls didn't get the message. If the All Hallows' Eve-themed "Haunted" tied the bow on a lot of dangling ribbons, then "162 Candles" started wrapping a whole new present. Taking full advantage of their chance to stop and a take a breath, the writers introduced us to an old — make that really old — friend of the Salvatore brothers while giving screen time to characters we haven't seen much of lately.
So, what happened?
You've got to wonder, what really changes in a town like Mystic Falls when Halloween rolls around? I mean, we've already got vampires and witches. Other creatures, demons and warlocks are bound to follow. 'Halloween' owns the town and only a few humans admit it. I suppose the holiday gives the townspeople a chance to let their freak flag fly. You know, subconsciously admit there's something unsettling about their settlement.
The Vampire Diaries
Written by series developers Williamson/Plec and directed by Marcos Siega, "Lost Girls" signaled the start of a new chapter for The Vampire Diaries. In last week's recap, I submitted that "You're Undead to Me" will be remembered as the episode that changed everything. This week's installment reaffirmed that belief by featuring an Elena like we've never seen, revelatory flashbacks (should you choose to believe Stefan's side of things) and a major change — er, transition for Vicki.
In "Belle Chose," writer Tim Minear and director David Solomon delivered the best, completely standalone episode of Dollhouse since last season's "True Believer."
How did TVGuide.com describe "Belle Chose"?
Bringing a number of plot lines to a head, "You're Undead to Me" featured the Diaries characters staring harsh realities directly in the face. The episode also went a long way in proving there are plenty of interesting characters besides Ian Somerhalder's Damon by using him sparingly and minimizing his trademark energy and wit.
Last season, we saw Echo deliver a baby while on an engagement. Now, it's time for her to have her own child. You know, without that pesky delivery thing.
"Instinct" largely took a break from advancing the grand arc and instead focused on Echo's imprinting as Emily, a woman designed to serve as the replacement mother for Jack and wife to Nate, whose real wife died giving birth to their son...
With "Family Ties," The Vampire Diaries delivered a slower entry designed to build up its characters (new and old) before, no doubt, returning to murder, revelations and football in upcoming episodes.
To say the episode was slow is not to say it was without surprises. The last quarter of the story featured two twists on top of one another. One of these story turns I saw coming, and the other completely surprised me while leaving this episode with a great aftertaste. More on that later.
Welcome to the second season of Dollhouse! No doubt, the shock of being granted a second chapter wore off long before the Fourth of July, but I hope fans remained excited enough to tune in. No need to wait for unprecedented DVD sales and feature film follow-up with this one, a la Firefly. With "Vows," Whedon & Co. springboard off their first season and deliver a Dollhouse (the show, the building, the staff...) inherently changed by Alpha's run of the place last spring.