Episode recap by Jaye
End of the road. End of waiting and watching, debating and relating ritual. End of the farce and skeletal remains of a show that, at one time, captured my heart and soul. I will miss Paul. As for Stefan, he has been MIA for two-three years now, but I have and will always be protective of him. I suppose I should feel a more ‘global’ bitter-sweetness about the denouement; but having had my mind whiplashed for the past couple of years has taken it’s toll. I’m actually sad about that. I’m mentally drained and physically spent. There were so many fabulous moments. Moments that enticed me to seek comrade-ary for dishing and wishing. Moments that transported me from the seat I occupied to the get inside and up-close into the intimate relationship that was Stelena. Ahhh…that well conceived and beautifully enacted romance between Stefan Salvatore and Elena Gilbert, founded and bound in hope, was, dare I say it? Epic.
As have been the writing process in these last waning years, the plot and story for the series finale seemed more manipulative than excellent or even worthwhile. Manipulation isn’t always a bad thing. Only when the storyline seems more desperate than thrilling, more hasty than filling does one realize that the ‘tasty’ dish that’s being served has nothing but empty calories.
The idea for the finale was, I suppose to come full circle. To recapture the ‘feel’ of the first couple of seasons with the underlying theme of redemption. The party line is that redemption was a necessity for both Salvatores. Except the manner in which Stefan lived his ‘un-life’ (save of course his unfortunate and horrific spiral into Ripperdom) was, from all appearances, one in which he owned his shame and guilt and tried to live by a moral code–or as close to moral as any vampire could get. It was Damon who seemed to have absolutely no remorse about killing. He loved being a vampire–begged Katherine to turn him. Now, I don’t mind incorporating redemption as a story arc–in a vacuum. But when his redemption comes at the cost of his life and the catalyst for this is Enzo’s death–ENZO’S DEATH!! then that’s not only and insult to Stefan, it’s an insult to me. Yes, of course that wasn’t the only component in his decision, but that discordant note tainted the rest of the story for me and I couldn’t buy what was being sold in the episode.
If this show really wanted to go full circle and all nostalgic, then they needed to re-introduce their original ‘Big Bad’ as the Final Big Bad. That person would not be Katherine Pierce but Damon Salvatore. Damon’s burrow into this venomous psyche this season alone, was grounds for his solo redemption arc. Tyler’s death at Damon’s hand was inconsequential. Nonetheless, like a Teflon vamp that he was, he was rewarded with everything his heart desired.
Bonnie saved the day. She said she would and she did, with the help of her powerful ancestors. Bennett witches 100 strong Black women, saving a town being destroyed by people who burned them a century or so ago. Wow. She then left to see the world.
Caroline and Alaric’s school was up and running (with Jeremy doing what now…?) not sure.
Matt’s gonna run for mayor,
Katherine played her games as she is wont to do. Hid Elena’s body. Pretended to be Elena. Got stabbed multiple times by the brothers Salvatore. Finally going to hell and given a push into it’s bowels by Stefan. She did have the second best line of the night though in telling Damon that Stefan is the better man…Bless.
Damon had more physical contact with Katherine (pretending to be Elena) than actually being with Elena which seemed odd. Nostalgic moments a-plenty. Elena sitting by the tomb stone writing in her diary and a crow flies by, then Damon appears. Though I couldn’t quite follow that sequence. Since Damon was human how could he have appeared as a crow–a buzzard maybe. I kid, I kid.
Stefan’s suicide was no surprise. Why? Because he is, was and will always be the better man–the reason for it however was contrite nonsense. I could have done without the now familiar and overused bickering back and forth between the brothers about individual martyrdom.
Stefan’s and Elena’s conversation took place in the school, in the hallway where they met–another nod to Season 1. They were both in ‘ the world between’. Gotta tell ya, those few minutes they were together were exponentially more poignant and more intimate than the time Elena spent with Damon. Now there is a certain amount of bias here, but Damon and Elena did not have a conversation, nor a meaningful hug. This is no consolation, by any stretch of the imagination, this deliberate directional choice goes to a certain amount of complicity–peeing in my face and calling it rain.
Within Stefan and Elena’s conversation I could have done without Stefan’s explanation about what he had done to and for Damon. Oh, and Stefan’s “I’m gonna love you forever” message to Caroline was…well…um Stefan your forever came today honey.
And finally, a moment that elicited a smile and certain amount of satisfaction. Stefan, entering some sort of heaven and seeing his best friend leaning against his cool red car. Nice!!
Lexi: “That was nice”
Stefan: “I was feeling epic.”
The last act were depicted with narrative by Elena. The scenes illustrated staging of the after-life. Elena reunited with Jenna, her mom and Dad in the house that was burned to the ground. Meanwhile across town, Damon reunited with Stefan.
Thank you Paul and Nina.