‘Vampire Diaries’: Is the Cure Worse Than the Disease?

by | February 8, 2013 at 8:31 AM | Recap, Vampire Diaries

"The Vampire Diaries": David Alpay as Professor Shane and Ian Somerhalder as Damon (Photo: Tina Rowden/The CW)

This week on “The Vampire Diaries,” the gang ends up on “Lost” island. Well, not really. It’s in cold Nova Scotia, and everyone knows how to leave, but there are hostile islanders and booby traps and mysterious visions. Damon (Ian Somerhalder), Elena (Nina Dobrev), Stefan (Paul Wesley) Bonnie (Kat Graham), Rebekah (Claire Holt), Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) and Shane (David Alpay) are there to track down the alleged cure for vampirism. But by the end of the episode it’s still not clear if it actually exists of if it’s the moonstone 2.0. Thematically, the episode is all about how each of the vampires feel about being vampires. Do they want to take the cure? Is it the equivalent of taking medication for a disease or denying your true nature? It’s an interesting question, because, within the universe of the show, as long as you have a ring that enables you to go outside in the daylight, being a vampire seems pretty awesome. You’re immortal, powerful and can control your urge to kill people. But most of the characters disagree. The grass is always greener. I’m going to tackle this episode character by character.

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Silas: Genius, Dupe or Mad Man?: As everyone walks around the island searching for the spot on Jeremy’s body map, Shane finally explains how he came to be such an expert on Silas. A year ago, he came there in the hope of making contact with his dead wife and son. Legend had it that Silas asked a powerful witch he was dating to make him immortal. She  discovered he was two timing her, so she trapped him in a cave and buried him alive since she couldn’t kill him. But the witch also gave Silas a cure for immortality and buried it with him in the hope that he would eventually use it to commit suicide. Why wouldn’t she just force it on him so he could use it? That is just one of the many hole’s in Shane’s story. He claims the vampire hunters were created by witches to find the cure and kill Silas. There is also a magical well. He cut his hand and bled into it. Then he had a vision of his wife Caitlin, who, he neglected to mention previously, was a witch. She told him that if he found a capable witch who is the descendant of the woman who created the spell (Bonnie) and a hunter (Jeremy), and caused three massacres, she’d  decided to try the well out for himself to save his wife and daughter. Hmmm… There have only been two massacres so far — the pastor blowing up the cabin, and Klaus killing the hybrids. That does not bode well for everybody else. Shane has lured everyone to an island, and caused numerous deaths, based  only on what may only have been a hallucination.

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Bonnie and Jeremy Are Kidnapped: As everyone wanders around the island, someone shoots an arrow at Jeremy. Someone else kills him. Midway through the episode, Jeremy disappears. A witch named Massack who is working with Shane has kidnapped him. Shane, who has stolen the tombstone from Rebekah, is surprised to learn that Massack was not the one who killed Jeremy’s attacker. Meanwhile, Bonnie can’t figure out how to use her powers to create a spell that will lead them to the cure. Shane admits that after his son died his wife tried to use Expression to resurrect him. Instead, it kiled her. Bonnie is like, “Uh, maybe you should have mentioned that before I got stuck on this island with you.” Shane claims he now understands how to control it and as long as Bonnie sticks with him, she’ll be fine. Bonnie is surprised his wife was a witch. Bonnie creates a magic fire that spreads in a neat line through the woods. She follows the path it creates and end sup with Shane, Jerrey and Massack.  Shane warns her that if she tries to escape, Massack will stop her.

Does Damon Love Being a Vampire More Than He Loves Elena?: Elena assures Damon that even after she is cured, she will still be in love with him. Given the differences between vampire Elena and human Elena, that would only be a safe assumption if she were in love with him before she turned. He says he used to miss being human. Now he can’t think of anything more miserable. He doesn’t want her to be cured. He thinks this is a dealbreaker. Even if she still loves him, then she’ll grow old and die while he stays a vampire. It would be funny to see 70 year old Elena with a Damon who still looks thirtysomething. Elena calls him out on pushing her away and ruining every good thing that ever happens to him because he doesn’t think he deserves it. She asks him to take the cure with her. That’s how much she knows this is real. She talks about growing old together. He is repulsed by the prospect. It would be quite the letdown to suddenly be unable to run fast or compel people. At the end of the episode, Damon is attacked by one of the five, who logically must be the person who saved Jeremy. He snaps Damon’s neck. It raises the tantalizing but unlikely possibility that Damon could be killed then resurrected as a human by the cure while everybody else ends up stuck being a vampire. That would be an appropriately ironic twist.

Stefan and Rebekah Wallow in Self Loathing: Rebekah asks Stefan if he will take the cure once Elena is again human and comes back to him. She admits that she hates being a vampire and her bravado is an act. Anyone who watched her spend two years trying to go to a prom figured that out a while ago. She wants to be normal. Stefan says if he takes the cure he will do it for himself, not Elena. That’s emotionally healthy of him. Since he has always been full of self hatred and guilt about his ripper years, this attitude is totally in character. What better way of making sure you never go down that path than again that making it an impossibility? When Rebekah notices the tombstone is missing, Rebekah accuses Elena of sealing it, and Stefan of being nice to distract her. Stefan sets her straight: “You think I would let some psychopath run off with the cure? Every single moment of my last 146 years has been ruled by the pain of being a vampire. And this cure ends that. It ends the guilt and it ends the suffering. What, you really think I would jeopardize that?”

Klaus Always Hurts the Ones He Loves: Tyler (Michael Trevino) taunts Klaus (Joseph Morgan),who is trapped in Elena’s house because of Bonnie’s spell in the prior episode. He thinks that Klaus will lose his powers when the cure is found and intends to kill him. As payback, Klaus bites Caroline (Candice Accola). Caroline freaks out, knowing that only Klaus’s blood can cure her from the wolf bite. He refuses to save her even after Tyler volunteers to be his slave again. After conferring with Caroline, he leaves, telling Klaus that if he wants to kill her he as to be the one who watches her die. Caroline does her best Oprah impression, saying he does awful things because he hurts which means there is a part of him that is human. She has caught herself wishing she could forget the horrible things he has done. She knows he is in love with her any anyone capable of love is capable of being saved. Whether she is smartly manipulating him, or being sincere, or, most likely, a bit of both, it works. He lets her drink from him.