12 October 2011

The Vampire Diaries S3 E4 "Disturbing Behavior"

Spoilers Ahead

I don't know if it's me or what but I'm less than impressed with this season of TVD. It just seems so...predictable. And dull. Where's the tension? Where are the twists? Where's the Damon that was a force to be reckoned with? Maybe he's too busy helping Elena get her boyfriend back and getting his ass kicked. Please tell me this season is building up to something good. Eye candy alone does not a watchable show make.

Anyway, "Disturbing Behavior" starts off in Chicago with the newly awakened Rebecca trying on clothes and getting up to speed on modern-day fashion. Stefan decides he needs some fresh air and while outside sees Katherine. They have a quick chat in which we find out that Katherine knows about Elena/Rebecca's necklace, that Stefan thinks he has it all under control, and that Klaus is smarter than everyone (according to Katherine, at least). Informative.

Meanwhile Damon is helping Elena get ready for the Founders' party at the Lockwoods'. Well, mostly he's giving her a hard time about making chili ("everyone brings chili") and for still wearing the necklace Stefan gave her. (Side note: isn't that necklace full of vervain, which is why Stefan gave it to her in the first place? And wouldn't it be a good idea to keep wearing it for that reason?)

Once Damon's had enough of Elena he meets up with Liz. It turns out she's been keeping Bill detained while the vervain leaves his system and now she wants Damon to compel him. Oh sure--now she appreciates his vampirism. Anyway before Damon can re-write his memories, Bill gives what I hope was meant to be an ironic speech about how the mind is so strong it can be trained to overcome the basic nature of a vampire. I kept waiting for Damon to ask him if he thinks he can train his mind to be straight instead of gay but he never did. No one did, which I thought was kind of ridiculous given the circumstances (come on, doesn't Bill sound exactly like those extremists who send their gay kids to be retrained to be straight?) Damon does at least compel Bill to leave town immediately, remembering only that he went shopping with Caroline.

While Damon's away Elena hangs out with Bonnie and Caroline. They (well, mostly Caroline) also give her a hard time about the necklace, as well as about all the time she's spending with Damon. Elena can't win. And as if to drive that point home her necklace suddenly burns her. When Bonnie takes a look at it it's clear the thing is rife with magic.

It turns out the magic is coming from Gloria, who is trying to locate the necklace through Rebecca. After performing her spell Gloria claims she knows where the necklace is! Oh, but not really (I hate it when writers use a line for dramatic effect even when it doesn't make sense). She then tells Stefan, Klaus and Rebecca that she needs some alone time to keep working on it. Stefan leaves with the other two but returns to find out exactly what Gloria knows. She admits she heard Elena and the others talking about Stefan but she has no interest in helping Klaus. Before Stefan can breathe a sigh of relief she informs him that the necklace is a talisman of the original witch and that she wants it for herself. Then she threatens Stefan before immobilizing him with her magic. Looks like it's torture time for Stefan as Gloria looks to find out what he knows the old-school voodoo way. Strange, though, that she's not worried about Klaus walking in on them. Then again it turns out Klaus isn't the issue. Just as Gloria finds out all about Elena, Katherine shows up and kills her. Guess she's not all bad.

After Stefan thanks Katherine and tells her to get lost (come on, dude--maybe you should get over it) he meets up with Rebecca at the warehouse. He asks her why she doesn't un-dagger the rest of her family and she claims that if she did Klaus would hunt her down and kill her. Which tells us that Klaus's family is a bunch of cowards. As if they couldn't have put him in his place if they'd all worked together. Anyway, Stefan then asks a bunch of clumsy questions about who Rebecca and Klaus are running from (she can't tell him because Klaus would be furious). Then she kisses him and realizes he's been lying (she has extra special powers of vampire-woman's intuition). When Klaus returns, Rebecca immediately tattles on Stefan, claiming she doesn't think he's with them. Stefan tries to protest but a second later everything goes black as Klaus attacks. So much for Rebecca and Stefan's great love.

It turns out the Founders' party is the main event this episode. While at it Alaric decides it's a good time to tell Damon to back off from Elena. Before Damon can properly respond he's called in to the Council meeting. He, Liz, and Carol Lockwood all claim the town is vampire free and the rest of the Council buys it. And then Bill shows up. It turns out that Damon's compulsion didn't take (he's got quite the trained mind, after all). Bill demands to be head of the Council and also wants vervain put into the town's water supply (woe to any humans with an allergy). Damon is furious about it but when he tells Alaric and Elena he doesn't exactly have their support. Elena is even stupid enough to suggest the vervain will help keep him in check. Rightly pissed off he makes sure Alaric is wearing his immortality ring before snapping his neck. Then he takes off to kill Bill.

Damon finds Bill where he left him and stops to have a quick chat with him. Then Damon bites him. I do have to say it's nice to see a vampire acting like a vampire on this show. The problem with having vampires as the good guys is that they act like good guys. Call me crazy but I want to see fangs and blood. Unfortunately it's over too quickly as Caroline, warned by Elena, shows up and puts an end to Damon's (and my) fun. For whatever reason she still loves her dad (you'd think the torture would have put a major damper on that) and her anger makes her stronger than Damon. See what I mean about him not being himself? Even Caroline gets the better of him. She does quit while she's ahead, though, and takes off with her dad while she still can.

Damon then has a confrontation with Elena in which she whines at him that he *gasp* acts like a vampire! He finally comes to his senses long enough to snap at her that he is a vampire and he's not Stefan, a concept she doesn't quite seem to grasp. At least she finally kinda-sorta admits to Caroline that she maybe could be attracted to Damon. We'll see if this actually ends up going anywhere.

When Alaric finally revives he's also pissed off at Damon. It's like everyone just noticed that Damon isn't a choir boy. Alaric's response to his newfound knowledge is to go to the Council and insist he gets a spot on it as the Gilbert family rep. He does have a point that Carol, Liz and Damon aren't entirely unbiased. And that supernaturals look out for themselves so the humans should do the same. But I'm getting the icky feeling that Alaric is on the road to anti-vampire fanaticism. Damn. Damon has his own--not quite sensible--reaction to all the flak he's been getting. When Katherine shows up at his door (with Elena's necklace, which she scammed off Bonnie) he agrees to go on a road trip with her. Yeah, okay, he could use a break but Katherine? Really? Sigh.

While all this is going on Jeremy is having some awkward time with his girlfriend (back in town at last) and his ghost ex. It seems Anna has been trying to get his attention for days but he's only just suddenly been able to hear her. From what Anna can determine, for Jeremy to actually see and hear her she needs to be pushing (from her side of reality) to be noticed at the same time as he's pulling--in other words he has to want to see her. Interesting that he keeps wanting to see her while he's with Bonnie. Anna tells him that she's alone and lonely where she is. She also mentions that she feels a darkness whenever Vicky is involved and that Jeremy has to be careful not to let her in. Sure if you can trust one ex's word against another's. It doesn't matter too much in any case. After Anna shows up at a rather inopportune moment Jeremy decides he's better off without her in his life. Even as she's begging him not to do it he shuts Anna out. Then he goes and finally tells Bonnie what's been happening since she brought him back from the dead while Anna cries and tries to get his attention to no avail. Sucks to be a ghost.

The episode ends with Stefan waking up in what turns out to be the back of a truck. Klaus is there too and surprisingly isn't mad at him. But he is wondering what Stefan's been hiding. So he figured it made sense to go back to the source. Welcome back to Mystic Falls, Stefan!

Maybe I'm still the only one not loving this season but you've got to admit that when the most interesting plot development is a road trip with Katherine the show's low on ideas. Maybe things will pick up in the next episode. If not it's a long time to wait for True Blood to start up again.

Fang Files

Appearance: Pale human until the vampire emerges, then dark/red eyes, dark facial veins and sharp fangs.

Strengths: Ability to compel humans, except for Caroline's dad. Ability to heal human wounds with their blood. Super strength and speed (the older the vampire the stronger they are--unless the younger one is really, really pissed off, apparently). Witty repartee, mad chili-making skillz.

Weaknesses: Vervain, magic.

Mythology: Original vampires can't be permanently killed, although they can be put into a death-like state with the use of a particular dagger. They return to life as soon as the dagger is removed.

Sound Bites

Rebecca: So women in the 21st century dress like prostitutes, then? You know, I got dirty looks for wearing trousers.
Klaus: You wore trousers so they could wear nothing.

Caroline: [to Elena] If my own father, who I love dearly, can't change me no one's changing Damon. Not even you.

Elena: Where have you been?
Damon: Managing Bill Forbes. Apparently he's impervious to compulsion.
Alaric: How?
Damon: I have no idea. But he threatened to out me! Don't get me started on the irony of that.

Bill: I knew what I was risking when I didn't leave town but I figured you're not self-destructive enough to kill the Sheriff's ex-husband.
Damon: Makes you the third person to underestimate me today.

Damon: [to Elena] I am not Stefan--how about you stop trying to turn me into him?

Caroline: Daddy, I'm gonna be okay.
Bill: You're a vampire, sweetheart. I don't think you'll ever be okay again.

The Vampire Diaries, Season 2 Episode 4 "Disturbing Behavior." Written by Brian Young. Directed by Wendey Stanzler. From The CW.

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