Friday, January 27, 2012

Important Life Lessons & Ancient Viking Vampires: The Vampire Diaries 3:8 Recap



Previously on The Vampire Diaries, there are Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves under Mystic Falls, & in the  Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves there are Secret Prehistoric Viking Cave Paintings.

Currently, on The Vampire Diaries, Elena & Alaric explore the Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves, amazed at how ancient everything is, Damon pulls pranks, because that's what vampires do best, everything is ancient, Elena glares at Damon, because that's what Elena does best, & did I mention how everything is ancient? Especially the Secret Prehistoric Viking Cave Paintings.

Life Lesson #1: Vikings: they are ancient.


As always, on The Vampire Diaries, Alaric knows everything because he is a high school history teacher. He explains to Damon & Elena that Secret Prehistoric Viking Cave Paintings tell a story. An ancient story. A story about werewolves. And Vikings.

Apparently, while the Lockwoods arrived in Mystic Falls with the infamous Founders in the 1860s, a tribe of Ancient Werewolves were here long before, carelessly graffiti-ing their names onto cave walls in runic Viking script. Names like: 


Ah yes, that famous Viking name, Rebekah.

Before Alaric can explain exactly how Rebekah is a Viking name, it's FLASHBACK TIME! We haven't had a good flashback in at least two episodes!


We find ourselves in the Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves, in the ancient past. You can tell Rebekah was a rebel even before she became a vampire because she Wishes To Wield a Blade even though she's a woman & she graffiti-s on cave walls with a dagger. In this flashback, we also learn that Klaus & Rebekah are afraid of their father, & with good reason, because their father is none other than Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire! DUN DUN DUNNNNNN!


Allow me, at this juncture, to take issue with The Vampire Diaries' history. Now, I am not a history student & I am certainly not a history teacher like Alaric the Know-it-All, so I don't know much about anything not involving literary vampires that happened before 1985 (hey, if I wasn't born, it's ancient history). HOWEVER, I strongly suspect that the following Life Lessons are not necessarily endorsed by Actual History Lessons. (And by strongly suspect I mean I have asked people who are more intelligent & knowledgeable than I am including but not limited to Wikipedia.)

Life Lesson #2: Contrary to popular belief, Vikings did actually form permanent settlements in the USA.

Life Lesson #3: In Virginia.

Life Lesson #4: Vikings were known for their prehistoric cave paintings.

Life Lesson #5: "Prehistoric," like "ancient," is a pretty loose term.

Life Lesson #6:  Elijah, Michael, Esther & Rebekah are all legitimate Viking names.

(Also, I've been spelling Rebecca wrong all this time. Sorry, Rebekah.)

Meanwhile, in the present day, Alaric studies the pictures he's taken of the Secret Prehistoric Viking Cave Paintings while Elena Buffys with Damon.


"Now, allow me to demonstrate what a vampire - not me, of course, just a random, hypothetical vampire - would do if you just held your neck a little bit more to the left."

Alaric's having some trouble with his Ancient Viking translations, so Elena decides to go straight to the source & ask Rebekah what her teenage cave artwork means. Rebekah, however, is much more interested in practising her cheerleading before homecoming than answering Elena's questions. However, she does reveal that she's spent 1000 years running from her father & that if Elena wakes him up everybody's doomed. Then she asks Elena to excuse her, because this 1000-plus-year-old evil Original Vampire has the serious need to cheerlead.

Life Lesson #7: It is perfectly natural for Ancient Viking Vampires with Jewish names to have English & Australian accents.

Life Lesson #8: You can never overdo the flashbacks.


In this flashback, Klaus & Elijah are swordfighting, there is a Random Adorable Child, & Rebekah has freakin beautiful hair & I am totally trying this style out next weekend.


So far it all seems like fun & games in Ancient Viking Camp, but we are about to learn that Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire DOESN'T LIKE FUN. (I'm beginning to understand why they locked him in a coffin for sixty years.) Teaching A Lesson swordfights ensue, which Klaus loses, quite spectacularly.

Back in the present day, Alaric is translating runes because of course Alaric speaks Ancient Viking.


Rebekah texts Elena to ask if she wants to hang out which makes Elena pretty happy because, as she says to Damon, she's ready to do a bit of Mean Girls-ing to break Rebekah & get her to tell them the truth. And while I appreciate that they point out that once a 1000 year old vampire joins the highschool cheerleading squad, we're operating under a whole different set of rules, I had to giggle every time Elena said the words Mean Girls Power Struggle.



(Every magazine should hire me to do their photoshopping.)

Meanwhile, in the dungeon jail cell, Damon decides to ignore the whole Lexie-detox Stefan-chained-to-a-chair plan, & instead he takes his brother out to the pub.

In Girlland, Rebekah now wants to be Elena's BFF. She meets Elena at the Salvatore mansion with loud pop music, champagne, & her own compelled private runway show & asks Elena to help her choose a dress for the homecoming dance.


Now, if there's one thing The Vampire Diaries does well it's compulsion scenes. We've spent the last few episodes learning how petty, shallow & immature Rebekah is, so that we almost think of her just as a pouty, spoiled teenage girl, but scenes like this one pretty neatly remind us of what happens when a pouty, spoiled teenage girl can do anything she damn wants. It's a chilling thought.

Anyway, so far Rebekah's totally winning the Mean Girl war because she can compel people, kill people & look amazing in a slinky prom dress. Also, she's got high shoes & drinks champagne during the day (yo ho yo ho, a vampire's life for me...).

Mean Girls Points: Rebekah 1, Elena 0.

Back at the house, Alaric is busy fatherfiguring at Bonnie about her boy troubles when he notices that the Magical Witchy Necklace has its own Ancient Viking Rune!


At the Salvatore mansion, Rebekah alternates snooping through Stefan's bedroom & giving us more flashbacks, in which she sort of explains the whole Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves thing by telling us that her Viking family were landowners in Europe who came to the New World via witchcraft to escape a plague but the New World was already populated by werewolves (& here we have yet another problematic Native-Americans-as-Werewolves subplot) so once a month the Vikings had to hide in caves & paint their diaries on the walls. So I guess that explains the cave paintings.

The necklace belonged to a witch (you can tell she's a witch because she's the only black Viking around) & Rebekah thinks it's pretty but the witch won't let her touch it. Also, the Random Adorable Child is Rebekah & Klaus's adorable brother. But oh no! One night, Adorable Brother & Klaus sneak out of the Secret Prehistoric Viking Caves to look at the werewolves turn & Adorable Brother is attacked! All the Vikings want the witch to save him but she can't Upset the Balance of Nature & so he dies! And that makes the Vikings reeeeally angry.

Meanwhile, in A Grotty Bar Somewhere in Virginia, Damon & Stefan are drinking ("I'll have your finest Waitress Brew, preferably a blonde, twenty-five year old vintage") & doing a bit of brotherly bonding, which Stefan immediately sees through, because he may be Off The Rails, but he's not completely stupid. He wants Damon to give it a rest & leave him alone, but Damon's got a new Ripper-Detox plan, & it involves blood & alcohol, so I guess it isn't really a detox after all.

Back at the Salvatore mansion, Rebekah's a bit embarrassed at having shared such a personal flashback so she tries to tell Elena that Stefan's a horrible predatory creature & that vampires don't care about stupid human lives, but Elena, who's a lot more on the ball than usual this episode, points out that Rebekah herself seems to care a lot about homecoming dance for a horrible predatory creature who doesn't care about stupid human lives. Then Elena tells Rebekah to go compel herself a friend.

Mean Girl Score: Rebekah 1, Elena 1.

Accepting this as a fair point, Rebekah tells Elena a bit more of her story. After the Adorable Brother died, the Original Witch turned the entire family into vampires as a way of keeping them alive, but because Buffy didn't exist yet & nobody knew what vampires were, they didn't realise what a curse not being able to go out in sunlight was. To say nothing of the insatiable desire to eat your friends.

In MORE FLASHBACKS we learn that the Original Witch is in fact Esther, Rebekah's mother, but I think that The Vampire Diaries made a mistake: Esther is white & blonde & therefore can't be a witch, right? Be consistent, Vampire Diaries!

Anyway, the World's Only White Witch didn't become a vampire herself, but kindly made Magic Sunlight Rings so her family wouldn't burn up in the daytime, & helped the vampires to burn the plot point tree white oak tree because that's the only thing that can kill an Original Vampire.

Meanwhile, in A Grotty Bar Somewhere in Virginia, Damon dances on tables with girls in an effort to remind Stefan what freedom is so that he'll try to get out of Klaus's hold. Stefan isn't optimistic & says that Klaus can't be killed. But what's this? Someone disagrees? Someone in a rather dapper suit! It's Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire!



Suits you sir!

Meanwhile, in FLASHBACKS, we learn that Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire's greatest shame is Klaus the Werepire, because - gasp! - Esther once had an affair with a werewolf & that's how Klaus was born! Esther, who seems like a real charmer, disowned Klaus once Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire found out about his origins but Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire was not satisfied! So he killed the whole village! And then he killed Esther! By tearing her heart from her chest as Klaus watched! What a family. And after that, Klaus & Elijah & Rebekah vowed to stick together as one Always & Forever ROUSING MUSIC.


Life Lesson #9: Women, if you are unfaithful you will give birth to an Evil English Werepire, so choose your husbands carefully!

Elena wants to know why Always & Forever means Even After You Locked Me in a Coffin For Ninety Years but Rebekah explains that Klaus is her brother & she's immortal, so there's really no one else to love. So actually, poor Rebekah just wants a friend.

Mean Girl Score: Rebekah 1, Elena 2.


And then she adds that if Elena does anything to harm her brother, Rebekah will rip her apart.

Mean Girl Score: Rebekah 2, Elena 2.

Back in A Grotty Bar Somewhere in Virginia, Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire plunges his hand through Damon's chest & threatens to rip out his heart if Stefan doesn't tell him where Klaus is! But Stefan's compelled not to say! And anyway, he's EVIL now, so why would he care if Damon died? As it turns out, he's not ALL evil, because at the very last minute he finds a loophole: he can't tell Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire where Klaus is, but can lure Klaus back to Mystic Falls!

Meanwhile, back in Mystic Falls, Alaric & his Viking Rune Deciphering Post-Its have figured out the real story about the Original Vampires, & it's not the one Rebekah's been told. (Although it does seem silly to leave the whole story written on a cave wall where anyone with a post-it note can read it.)

Elena goes back to Rebekah's place (where Rebekah is drinking whiskey, because champagne is for the morning & whiskey's for the afternoon - man, I wish I could be an Original Viking Vampire) to explain what Alaric's post-it notes have discovered. According to the post-its, a werepire killed the original witch, & Michael the Vampire Hunting Vampire is no werepire!

Klaus the Evil English Viking Werepire is so evil that he killed his own mother! And then he lied & said it was his father so Rebekah wouldn't hate him! Understandably, Rebekah has a hard time adjusting to this information. And what do you get when you upset a 1000 year old teenage vampire?



BLOODLUSTY STRANGLE ANGER, that's what! (Don't worry, I get that sometimes too, Rebekah.) But then, because I suspect that Evil Original Vampire Rebekah is gonna become a good guy now, she lets Elena go.

Meanwhile, in A Grotty Bar's Carpark Somewhere in Virginia, the Salvatore brothers are having a heart-to-heart. The heart-to-heart goes a little something like this:

DAMON: Aw, see now? You really do care.
STEFAN: I really don't.
DAMON: Careful now, your humanity's showing.
STEFAN: Hey, I'm totally badass & have no humanity. I don't care about you, or about anything, & when Klaus is dead I'll be free to go away from you & Elena & all the stupidheads & just pout by myself forever. So there.
DAMON: It's okay, bro, sometimes I have Feelings too.
STEFAN: Careful now, your humanity's showing.
DAMON: *PUNCH*
AUDIENCE: VAMPIRE FIGHT!!!

(Damon wins the vampire fight because even when he's the Good Guy he's still a little bit badass.)

And now it's time for everyone's favourite Deep & Meaningful Emo Pop Song Closing Scene!

This week's song is all about being all alone & how nothing has changed & Rebekah cries by a roaring fire. Cut to Elena's house, where Damon has made himself comfortable on her bed while she was in the bathroom. Damon tells Elena what he's done & explains that Stefan's a bigger dick than ever, but now he's a dick that's on their side & the song is about wanting to be someone else instead. As expected, Elena's not as thrilled about that information as she could be, because she's thinking about Rebekah who is not a dick but is also on their side, & how she's just a girl who lost her mother too young & lets love consume her (Just like Elena, right? See what we did there?) & the song is instrumentally violinny & Very Sad & Elena talks about how there is no bond more important than the Bond Of Family. Then the song says something about being written on the wind & Elena tells Damon that Stefan won't be saved because he loves her, but because he loves Damon, because (& I'm paraphrasing here) BROMANCE IS STRONGER THAN LOVE. Then Elena & Damon lie romantically (& entirely chastely) in bed together & the song says that if it were me it'd have a little trust. I'm not too sure about that now, song, I mean, I don't see a post-emo-pop-song-closing-scene cliffhanger this episode. How do you expect me to trust when you change things around like this? Although I know there's one thing we can all have trust in. That's right: BROMANCE.


Life Lesson #10: Bromance: it's stronger than love.

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