We get straight into the action this week, having left off with the horror of Lizzie and Josie's abduction by Seline. Ric and Caroline are currently filling the cops in on their evil nanny, who is out there somewhere with their daughters. In the middle of all this, Ric calls Seline to ask WTF. She tells him his daughters are special, and they have special needs, and she’s “saving them from a lifetime of pain,” which is ominous, to say the least.
Alaric is clearly a Liam Neeson fan because he delivers a totally badass speech about how hard he’s coming after her to get his kids back. It’s so good, Seline actually blinks! She hangs up first, looking kind of rattled. Go, Ric.
Sibyl and Damon join Seline and the girls. Sibyl has at least a century of rage toward her “sister.” I never liked Sibyl, and this episode makes it clear that she’s the more dangerous of the two. For starters, she uses Damon’s phone to call Enzo, and she Sirens him through the phone, leaving him in deep distress–she’s actually in his subconscious, eviscerating him and taunting, telling him this is what he gets for escaping her.
Of course, Seline’s motive for the kidnapping is that she’s planning to offer the girls to Cade as replacement “missionaries,” to take over the duties of killing people to send their evil souls to hell. So…which of the Sirens is worse is kind of a moving target.
Stefan is ready to ride out with Ric and Caroline, but Caroline shuts him down hard. She gives him back his engagement ring, telling him that as long as her kids are in jeopardy, she and Ric are in it together, and Stefan needs to back up and just do what she actually needs, not what he thinks she needs. Of course, the subtext here is that she doesn’t trust him not to choose Damon over Lizzie and Josie. Totally fair–he had that coming.
Bonnie’s brought Enzo to the Armory for help, and Stefan is mind walking to observe Sibyl’s torture sessions. Stefan gets glimpses of where Sibyl is in the real world, and he reports back to Ric and Caroline on the info. He says continued probing of Enzo’s mind could be damaging under the circumstances, and Ric basically says Enzo’s mind is an acceptable loss in the current situation. Harsh, Ric. Stefan is conflicted, but he asks Ric to make sure Caroline knows how much he’s doing to help–if he’s going to risk psychically lobotomizing Bonnie’s true love, he at least wants credit for it from his own girlfriend. Cold, Stefan.
Now that he knows Seline’s plan, Damon has an idea of his own. He gleans the requisite conditions for contacting Cade involve a body of water and some human victims worthy of Cade’s interest, so he takes the whole gang to a super-seedy motel with tons of blatant criminals wandering around being creepy. He’s all, here’s a pool and some cretins, so let’s get this show on the road.
Stefan is still in Enzo’s mind, observing quietly. He gets impatient and reveals himself to Sibyl, who has known he was there all along, apparently. She tells him she has a proposal and he’ll have to come alone. Cut to: Ric and Caroline pulling up at a seedy motel where Stefan apparently told them they would find the girls…of course, he sent them to the wrong one, because he’s doing his own thing now. Ric lashes out at Caroline, throwing it in her face that these are his and Jo’s kids, not hers, and he should have kept the girls away from all the craziness that follows Caroline and her friends around; after this is over, he says, he’s taking the girls far away, forever. Seems reasonable, honestly. Harsh about the “real mom” rap, but otherwise not wrong.
Off at the real super-seedy motel of death and creepy poolside rituals, Stefan arrives and finds himself embattled by a horde of mind-controlled drug dealers and pimps. Sibyl has them all on a mission to kill him, because she needs him to kill one of them. Damon stands by and counsels Stefan on the whole “kill or be killed” scenario, and when he finally makes it clear that killing one of these dudes is a crucial part of the plan to save Lizzie and Josie, Stefan gives in and kills the dude trying to kill him. Damon says, “That’ll leave a mark…on your soul.”
But I’m sorry…why exactly would that be? Stefan is a Ripper. He has killed SO MANY PEOPLE. This one is in self-defense, even. Why is this death a stain on a Ripper’s tarnished soul? Sometimes, the morality calculus on this show is really hard to fathom.
Over by the pool, Cade has been summoned, and he is intrigued by the offering of the twin magic siphons. Sibyl interrupts to outbid Seline, however: How would Cade like a couple of vampire brothers instead of mere, mortal children? Cade’s in, Stefan’s in, the deal is sealed. Damon has the cockeyed notion that serving hell is better than going there himself. He’s really strange with his humanity off.
Back at the Armory, Enzo awakens to hear Matt saying kind words about him, honoring the strength of character and will it took to fight so hard against Sibyl that whole time. Considering the history between these two, I’m mad impressed with our Matty Blue.
Alone together, finally safe, Bonnie asks Enzo how he managed it, fighting a Siren’s control for so long. It’s another beautiful Enzo moment, as he tells her that through his lonely, brief human life as an orphan, then his long, painful life as a vampire who was abandoned, caged, tortured, and abandoned some more, he’d never stopped believing that life couldn’t be so cruel as to let him die without ever knowing true love. Having found it finally, with Bonnie, he was able to hold onto that lifeline. I wonder if Damon would have been able to fight if Elena were still in the world, not relegated to a coffin for decades…but I suspect it’s simply not equivalent. Enzo is stronger than Damon or Stefan, perhaps because he never had what they had–each other.
Ric and Caroline have a heart-to-heart. He apologizes for the worst of what he said, and she says he was still right about the rest of it; he should take the girls away to keep them safe from her crazy vampire life. Speaking of that vida loca, she puts Stefan’s ring back on and asks him, with due trepidation, what exactly he had to do to save her girls. He gives her the breakdown on his and Damon’s new jobs as soul-collectors for hell. He has 24 hours to say goodbye. But, “you promised me a June wedding,” she says, in a classic Caroline moment.
Sibyl and Seline are having a fancy dinner to celebrate their freedom, but Sibyl says, Not so fast, sis. She smugs at Seline about leaving her out of the deal after all; Seline is totally going to hell. Seline’s all, But I was putting you in my deal! And Sibyl just reminds Seline she’s still holding a grudge about this and that, so sending her “sister” to hell seems like a fair recompense. Yep, they both suck, but Sibyl is definitely creepier.
Finally, Matt and Ric have a man-to-man about how they are, in fact, the only men with pulses around here, and sometimes, they feel outnumbered and outgunned by the volume of supernatural crazy. After all that’s happened, Ric is itching to kill something. That something is Damon!
Matt and Ric shoot Damon, weakening him. Ric punches the hell out of Damon, whom he’d not long ago described as the closest thing to a brother he’d ever had. Then, he pulls out a stake and drives it into Damon’s heart. You’re expecting some kind of twist, like Damon’s now protected by Cade and can’t be killed in the usual ways, or Alaric realizes at the last minute he just can’t bring himself to do it, or actually the stake isn’t meant to kill Damon but only incapacitate him so they can put him through Siren Song rehab…but no, the telltale creeping gray comes upon Damon as the stake snuffs out his vampire life.
And then your moment of Holy crap, what just happened?! is immediately undone by “next week on,” in which Damon is clearly still around, possibly because he had a little side action with Cade, seeing as Stefan is apparently gone next week instead. I wouldn’t have minded a little more dragging out the suspense than that, but hey, the Internet, right? They couldn’t have gotten away with a surprise. (No one ever actually believed Jon Snow was dead, and HBO really tried with that one.)
So we’re almost halfway through the final season of The Vampire Diaries, and no one is safe. What do you think of the twists and turns this week? Were you especially worried about anyone not making it through? Hit Like, and sound off in the comments!