Nice change of pace with the Damon, Stefan and Alaric road trip.
New character introduced.
Joshua Butler directed.
Bonnie still stuck with Kai in 1994.
Bonnie or Damon always in trouble or suffering. Pick someone new.
Still no development with Sarah.
No Enzo, Matt or Jeremy.
This week’s episode of The Vampire Diaries titled, “Fade Into You,” offered viewers a Thanksgiving themed episode filled with an extra helping of drama and a side of truth. At Whitmore, Elena (Nina Dobrev) and Caroline (Candice Accola) hosted a Friendsgiving dinner with Tyler (Michael Trevino), Liv (Penelope Mitchell), Luke (Chris Brochu), Jo (Jodi Lyn O’Keefe) and Liam (Marco James) all in attendance. In true TVD fashion and like all the gang’s celebrations, madness took center stage as the truth of Kai’s (Chris Wood) past is revealed and its shocking connection to three dinner attendees. While, Damon (Ian Somerhalder), Stefan (Paul Wesley), Alaric (Matt Davis) and Ms. Cuddles took a trip to Portland in search of the Gemini coven, the ascendant and clues to bring Bonnie (Kat Graham) home to 2014. And in the witchy 1994 prison land, Kai takes Bonnie to his home in Portland, where he insists on cooking Thanksgiving dinner. However after he finds his sister’s hidden magic, he ditches Bonnie and leaves her stranded in Portland. A lot of truths came to light in this week’s episode and there’s so much to discuss. Let’s start!
Witches Be Crazy
We learned some of Kai’s backstory this week. Viewers were given insight to some of the mystery surrounding his madness and why his coven trapped him in a 1994 supernatural prison. In such a Kai centric episode, Chris Wood did great in his portrayal of family murdering, Damon taunting, sexy cooking sociopath who is bane of Bonnie’s existence. The opening scene, a flashback, as Kai searches for his siblings having just murdered some of his family he stomps slowly through the house yelling calmly and so disconnected conveying to the audience this kid has really snapped. Viewers’ experience is heighten as they try to anticipate what Kai could possibly do once or if he finds them. At the car scene with Bonnie, Kai’s facial expression as he tells her why they’re in Portland conveys to the audience that he is up to something and should not be trusted. He has a sly smirk and almost looks proud of what he has in store for the visit. Again this coupled with what we know from past episodes raises the audience’s suspicions about what his intentions. Chris not only nails Kai’s cray cray side, he shows his range in this episode as viewers almost, yes almost, feel bad for Kai when he realizes his coven has tricked him. Instead of merging with his sister, Jo, to vie for leadership of the Gemini coven, they trap him in his own personal prison. Kai looks so shocked and genuinely hurt by their betrayal especially when his father appears to complete the spell sealing his fate. His face reminiscent of a little boy saddened by his own father’s rejection really illustrates Kai’s pain when his father choses the coven over family, over him. Nice job Chris!
An Unexpected Family Reunion and Lots of Dinner Drama
For weeks TVD fans have suspected Whitmore College professor, Jo, is the sister of the family murdering psycho struck in 1994, Kai. This week’s episode confirmed all the suspicions about Jo and Kai. but also shed a whole new light on the Gemini coven, including some members, who most viewers had never even imagined had a connection to them. Not only is it revealed Jo is in fact Kai’s sister, but his twin sister. But let’s be honest, the real shocker comes when at Friendsgiving dinner when innocently Luke was sharing some old family videos and Jo recognizes her voice in the clip. Jaws hit the floor when the audience learns the Wonder Twins, Luke and Liv are also related to Jo and Kai! During the eye opening scene when their coven’s practices are explained, Penelope Mitchell does an exceptional job conveying the pain Liv carries knowing their coven expects her and Luke to merge. Liv cannot imagine doing a ritual knowing either she or Luke will not survive and the other emerges coven leader. Viewers really see the pain on her face as she appears to be trying to hold back tears with her sad expression as she then abruptly leaves the table and quickly walks out of the room.
“You can’t help me. Why do you think I’m trying to get rid of you? When I look at you… I feel everything I don’t get to have. I either die in the merge, or I get to live with the fact that I killed my own brother. So tell me, Tyler, how can you help with that?” – ;Liv.
And if it wasn’t enough of a truth bomb that Luke, Liv, Kai and Jo are all siblings to make viewers heads spin, Grams, Bonnie’s grandmother, was Jo’s mentor and a family friend. A collective ‘aahh’ can be heard throughout the entire fandom as finally everything is slowly starting to make sense why Grams sent Bonnie and consequently, Damon into a supernatural prison with a sociopath. Because let’s be real, Grams would send her beloved granddaughter to a place with a crazed killer if there wasn’t some kind of witchy escape hatch. The final shock got viewers when the patriarch of the newly reunited family popped up and solution to ensure Kai stays in 1994 land is killing his own daughter. Harsh. Papa Witch seems very much like another demented father we all know, Papa Original Mikael.
Skipping Dinner for a Bro-Trip
It was a nice change of pace and a treat this episode for Stefan, Damon, Alaric and Ms. Cuddles to take a bro trip to Portland. The dynamic between them provide a much needed comic tone to an episode so heavy with witchy family drama and murder. When they first arrive in Portland, the conversation where Damon and Alaric try to persuade Stefan to date Caroline was great. Viewers couldn’t help but chuckle as part of the convincing included was filled with sarcasm and a jab or two at each other.
“Oh, no. Is Stefan feeling sensitive about ruining his friendship with Caroline? She really liked him, and he broke her heart.” – Damon in a high pitched voice pretending to be Ms. Cuddles.
A new ship set sail when Damon voices Ms. Cuddles opinion on the situation. Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley and Matt Davis have such a great dynamic to watch. Despite the obvious, three times the good looks on screen, viewers enjoy scenes with the guys together because they can sense the genuine friendship between them. Their scenes together are just so natural and light. It’s not all fun and games when their together, these boys get shit done even if its accidentally. Viewers laugh as they bicker, but are quite surprised when Stefan kicks Ms. Cuddles into what appears to be an empty field only to reveal the house hidden by the Gemini coven. Despite all the smartass comments and ball busting, which is quite entertaining nonetheless, when push comes to shove, the guys have each others’ back. The bond of brothers and friendship between the three is so strong. It offers viewers the contrast of the familial love shown within the Gemini coven. Viewers see the true meaning of familial love when Stefan risks his life to find a way back into the house to rescue Damon from Papa Witch. And even though Ric isn’t an actual brother to the Salvatores, he is treated very much as if he is and vice versa. The vibe of their bro-trip is similar to Dalaric, but the addition of Stefan is the cherry on top that makes this three way bromance that much sweeter.
From the very beginning to the end of the episode captured the audience’s attention and didn’t let go. Episode writers Nina Fiore and John Herrera provide an episode layered four separate stories, in different locations and even different decades altogether into one eye opening, question answering episode. Bringing things full circle and answering questions viewers have been asking for weeks, while still leaving the audience with even more unanswered questions. The dialogue between Damon, Stefan and Alaric is snarky and fun especially the scene when Damon and Alaric try to convince Stefan to date Caroline. Director, Joshua Butler does a great job directing the episode. The opening scene Butler really heightens the suspense by focusing on Kai’s boots and the blood dripping on the floor as he searches for the rest of his siblings. Both the writing and directing of the transitions from the flashbacks scenes to present one are seamless. When Kai lifts the bed in the first flashback looking for his brother and sisters, the camera angles make viewers feel as if they’re hiding under the bed the bed with Jo and the twins. Then as the bed is lifted viewers go from feeling as if they’re under the bed to Bonnie’s point of view being trapped in the trunk of a car as it is being opened unaware of the of her surroundings. The bar scene between Damon and Elena is done beautifully all around, acting, directing and writing. The audience can feel the emotion of the scene. Ian and Nina deliver their lines beautifully. Their facial expressions and body language conveys the emotion of the scene to the audience and really gets the feels going. Butler’s focus on Damon and Elena’s hands when she puts her hand on top of his and then Elena caressing Damo’s knuckles with her thumb adds to the scenes’ hope and shows the bond between them still very strong.
Look, I am at a crossroads right now where I could go live my life the way I probably should, be successful and safe, probably very happy or I could risk all that for a tiny glimmer of a feeling I just can’t shake.” – Elena.
While Chris Mollere’s musical selection for the scene, “When You Fall in Love” by Andrew Ripp, hits it home for viewers making the scene that much more powerful. The songs lyrics about a connection and love so strong it can weather any storm fits perfectly in the scene. Mollere’s entire musical selection for the episode is exceptional. Infusing hits of the 90’s into the flashbacks with Bonnie and Kai helped viewers differentiate between present scenes and the 1994 supernatural prison hell. “Fade Into You” was a rather satisfying episode of TVD. It brings some truths to light while leaving viewers intrigued so they’re sure tune in for the next episode. Can’t wait to see what TVD has in store in two weeks.
Comments, Questions, Concerns
- How cute are Liv and Tyler? Love how he’s determined to protect her.
- And speaking of cuteness….Stefan and Caroline are adorable.
- The friendship between Stefan and Elena is a delight. Its refreshing to see exes such good friends.
- Um, honestly who would eat anything Kai cooks? What the hell Bonnie?
- Just have to mention how funny it is when Jo tells Liam to “shut up.” Sorry Liam.
- Totally think Damon, Stefan, Alaric and Ms. Cuddles could have a spin off or web series. “Three Men and a Teddy Bear” or “The Dalarican Diaries”
- Josh Parker aka Papa Witch (Christopher Cousins) does an exceptional job. No wonder Kai has issues.
THE VAMPIRE DIARIES 6×09 airs THURSDAY, DEC. 4 at 8/7c on the CW
The Vampire Diaries 6×08 “Fade Into You” REVIEW