It's flashback time on The Vampire Diaries, and this week we learn about Katherine's backstory (thumbs up), plus more about the curse (thumbs down). We even watch as some couples I asked your opinion on make a little bit of romantic progress.
In general, this episode sets up a showdown with an old, dangerous original vampire named Klaus, and hopefully it's also signifying that all this curse business is about to end. But let's talk about what goes down this week by breaking it all down into the good, the bad, and the bloody when you read more.
- We head to 15th century Bulgaria and see a human Katherine giving birth to an illegitimate daughter. It's significant because it's the answer to how Katherine's bloodline continues, and we see the most vulnerability in her character so far as she's devastated to have her child taken from her before she can see or hold her. From then, Katherine (Katerina at the time) is disowned by her family and banished to England where she meets Klaus, the mysterious vampire who happens to be the oldest vampire in history. Not only does he vant to suck her blood, he wants to sacrifice her. Pretty intense.
- It's Nina Dobrev on Nina Dobrev time! Katherine's next flashbacks are spurred on by Elena, who pays the imprisoned Katherine a visit to find out about Klaus and why he's after her. Back in Katherine's past, we see Katherine running from Klaus and taking refuge with Trevor and Rose. Klaus wants to sacrifice her and break the Sun and the Moon Curse, but Katherine finds a way out; she tricks Rose into giving her some of her vampire blood, and then hangs herself, thus turning into a vampire and being useless to Klaus as a non-human doppelganger. Following? It's convoluted, but there is a hint (foreshadowing, maybe?) of what could be in Elena's future, as Katherine offers her some blood, implying that Elena could be turned into a vampire to escape the danger of being a human doppelganger. There's a flicker in Elena's eyes that shows she considers it for a moment, and though she refuses, you know this won't be the last time she thinks about turning.
- My favorite Damon quote of the week isn't a snarky comment, it's when Rose calls him out for being in love with Elena and he sheepishly exclaims, "I'm not in love with anyone!" The vampire doth protest too much. Our face time with Damon is limited to a field trip to meet Slater, a well-educated vampire friend of Rose who has info on Klaus. Unfortunately, Elijah — so not dead as Damon had thought — interrupts the fun coffee shop interlude when he shows up and throws a handful of silver through the protected window.
- And so the Bonnie/Jeremy courting begins . . . or does it? Jeremy asks Bonnie on a date, and though she falters when she responds because he is her best friend's little brother, after all, she agrees to hang out with him at the Mystic Grill. Throwing a wrench in their flirtation is a new kid in town, Luka, who Bonnie has immediate sparks with. Those sparks aren't just attraction: when she runs into him and his father at the Grill later, Luka's dad asks if Bonnie has any family in Salem. A later conversation reveals what Bonnie was sensing — Luka and his dad are witches! Or warlocks, rather. I was just happy that Bonnie was getting an ally, but this development is even juicier than I expected: Luka's dad is calling the shots with Elijah!
- Another pair whose relationship grows this week is Stefan and Caroline. She may just be distracting him from going to look for Elena at Katherine's tomb, but it's sweet when Stefan admits that he looks after her so much because she reminds him of his old best friend Lexi.
- As much as I hate to admit it, Katherine is becoming more sympathetic. Her final flashback reveals that she had once returned home to find her family slaughtered by Klaus, and as much as she's the "manipulative, psychotic bitch" Stefan accuses her of, it's clear she still has an emotional connection to her family.
- Please let next week be the last we hear of this curse. It's overly complicated but not compelling, and I can't bring myself to care that Bonnie, Tyler, and Caroline are now in danger too, because Katherine needs a witch, a werewolf and a vampire to break it (what, no wardrobe?). Break it or don't break it, but I'm done hearing about the moonstone.
- I'm not feeling the sex scene between Rose and Damon. First, she annoyed me by telling Damon to turn off his emotions toward Elena. Please, girl, you're so transparent: It's all just a ploy to get in his pants. But I have to give it to her; I might say just about anything for Damon Salvatore too.
- This show is all about the expendable vampire characters. I liked Slater, the cute hipster vampire, but on this show, if you don't seem that important, you're as good as dead. I'm proven right when we see that Elijah is compelling Slater to tell Damon to get the moonstone and amass the witch/vampire/werewolf, and then compels him to stake himself. Good thing I didn't get too attached.
Are you as ready for the curse/doppelganger nonsense to be resolved? Are you more excited about any of these potential couples now that you've seen this week's episode? Chat me up below, and for you superfans, don't forget to check out my Vampire Diaries-related gifts and the Hooked on Vampire Diaries group in the community.
Photos courtesy of The CW