If there is anything The Vampire Diaries has taught us, it’s to not think too hard about the logic of it all – because otherwise our brains would explode. For instance, how does Damon get from the forest outside Mystic Falls to Whitmore College in, like, thirty seconds? What are the odds that one of the 40 people in the town square last week just so happens to also work at a gas station that is supposedly many hours away from Mystic Falls? How is Silas managing to convince people he’s Stefan? Shouldn’t Elena should know better than to think Stefan would ever make comments like the ones Silas!Stefan did? Why would Silas bother compelling Elena to weaken Damon when she could easily just kill him without that step? On a normal TV show, questions like this would keep me up at night. But, because it’s The Vampire Diaries, I know to just accept these mysteries and let it go. So, let’s just talk about the other stuff going on this week, okay?
This week, Damon asks Sheriff Forbes to drag the lake for Stefan’s body. As the original plan was to drop Silas into the lake, Damon suspects that Silas might have thrown Stefan in his place. I’m not entirely sure why Damon didn’t just hop in and go for a swim; I’m sure he’d have been able to find the safe quickly with his vampire speed and vision, but whatever.
While the Mystic Falls police team is busy handling that, Jeremy and Matt, also known as the Gilbert-Donovan braintrust, are busy trying to keep Katherine hidden from Silas. They tie her up and take her out of town, but Katherine is – hilariously – suffering from a sinus infection, so she naturally makes the boys suffer along with her. It was quite entertaining to watch.
They stop to get gas and Katherine tries to run away when they let her free to use the restroom. Jeremy manages to stop her in time, but the gas station attendant recognizes her and Matt ends up having to take him out to prevent him from contacting Silas. [Again, we’re just skipping over the illogical concept that the random gas station attendant hours away from Mystic Falls would have conveniently been one of the few people present for Silas’ town-wide compulsion.]
At Whitmore College, Elena has found out that the doctor who covered up their dead roommate’s bite marks is also a professor at the school, so Elena signed Caroline and herself up for his class. However, the professor kicks them out because he immediately recognizes them as Freshman – plus, they were sort of talking during class.
So, with that investigation being cut off, Elena calls Damon for advice, but their conversation is interrupted when Silas shows up at the college, pretending to be Stefan. Silas/”Stefan” tells her all the stuff that has been going on back home that Damon has been keeping from her – like her brother’s expulsion. He tries to get her to tell him where Jeremy is, but she doesn’t know. Once he figures out she can’t help him, he compels her to weaken, then kill, Damon. [If only that could be a threat we could take seriously. Unsurprisingly, she fails.]
Anyway, Silas – having received a tip from one of his many informants – takes off after Katherine. Somewhere in the woods, Katherine is camping with Jeremy and Matt. Silas surprised Matt and tries to use his mind control to silence Matt, but for some reason, it doesn’t work. Matt yells to Jeremy to get Katherine and run. Silas looks into Matt’s mind and realizes he is under control of “Travellers” [which, as Silas later points out, is just a P.C. term for gypsies]. Angry, Silas kills Matt, but [fortunately for Matt and the fandom], Matt is still wearing the Gilbert ring.
In an interesting twist, we actually get to see Matt on the Other Side this time. He wakes up and sees Bonnie – who tells him about the rules of the Gilbert ring: every time they die wearing it, their ‘soul’ wakes up farther and farther away from their body, and they then have to just wander around until they find their body again. [What I’d like to know is how that works when they die enough that they end up across an ocean or something – can spirits hitch plane rides?]
Matt is obviously confused as to why he can see Bonnie, until she tells him about her death. The two share a really, really heartbreaking moment as Bonnie admits that she is unable to accept her own death, let alone her father’s. Unfortunately, Matt does not remember any of this when he gets back in his body [which is how that usually works, I know, but I still had hope that this time would be different. I’m so tired of no one knowing about Bonnie‘s death!].
Meanwhile, Jeremy and Katherine run to Matt’s truck, where Jeremy leaves Katherine so that he can go back and help Matt. Katherine gives him some speech about leaving Matt and saving himself, but Jeremy basically tells her where to shove it. It isn’t long before he finds Matt, and also Silas, who was standing watch over Matt’s body for some creepy reason. Because Jeremy is a hunter, Silas‘ tricks doesn’t work on him, so the two go at it in a hand-to-hand fight. Jeremy manages to hold his ground until Silas runs Jeremy through with a branch. Just as Silas is going in for the kill shot, Katherine shows up to save the day – firing a shotgun straight through Silas’ chest. The two then take Matt‘s body and get the hell out of there.
[On that subject: don’t get me wrong, I’m really glad Jeremy didn’t die (again), but I just wish they’d have thought of another way to save him besides using it as an opportunity to start Katherine on the path to redemption. Why do writers insist on redeeming every ‘bad’ character? It just isn’t necessary. Fingers crossed Silas never gets that treatment, cause he’s too fun like he is now.]
When Silas comes to, he goes off to compel himself some dinner. There, the Travellers finally catch up to him. He doesn’t back down from the challenge or threat, but before he can kill them, one of the Travellers [Nadia, the same one who Matt and Bex had a threesome with in Prague] kills the other one and basically joins Team Silas.
Back at the college, Elena corners Damon and fails to kill him, of course, but she does do a fairly good job of torturing him – and herself – in the process. In the end, it is her thoughts and emotional feelings that she has been having about Stefan recently that help her break the mind compulsion. Soon after this, Elena breaks the news to Caroline that she is going back to Mystic Falls with Damon to help him search for Stefan [though don’t ask me why Caroline didn’t go with them – Stefan is her BFF/”Sober Sponsor”, so she should be just as concerned as Elena and Damon, but apparently the writers forgot that along the way].
When they get back, Sheriff Forbes brings them to the safe Stefan is supposedly locked in. They unlock it to reveal a dead man instead of a starving Silas. With that, it is implied that Stefan the Ripper is back, but we’ll have to wait til the new episode to see it for ourselves!