Television Tourniquet: 'The Vampire Diaries' Episode 1.19


The Vampire Diaries Episode 1.19
Miss Mystic Falls
Written By: Bryan Oh & Caroline Dries
Directed By: Marcos Siega
Original Airdate: 22 April 2010

In This Episode...
Stefan is still maintaining that he is off human blood, and he was handling his cravings.  Damon catches him in a lie when he finds that Stefan has a fridge full of stolen bags from the blood bank.  While normally Damon would rejoice in his brother finally getting back on the human, with the Founders snooping around it is not good for Stefan to be unpredictable right now, so he tattles to Elena.  Damon explains that normal for vampires is to consume human blood - but to spend a lifetime controlling it.  Stefan has spent so long denying himself that now he is unquenchable.

Of course, the timing for all this is terrible - though when is it a good time to turn into a bloodthirsty monster?  It is time for the Miss Mystic Falls pageant, and Stefan is supposed to be Elena’s escort.  Instead, he is in the bathroom, throwing a fit after finding out that Elena knows about his secret.  When another contestant, Amber, walks in by mistake, Stefan vamps out and drags her into the parking lot.  He compels her into going with him, and spends the rest of the afternoon - and well into the evening - fighting with himself before giving in and feeding off Amber.  He finally compels her to run, but by then the hunger is too strong, and he pursues.

Having discovered the mess in the bathroom, Damon puts the pieces together and takes Elena to look for Stefan.  Bonnie, now back in town and blaming the Salvatore brothers for Grams’s death, follows out of morbid curiosity.  The trio find Stefan feasting on Amber, and he likely would have drained her had they not come by.  Nothing they say or do will slow Stefan down, so Bonnie does some kind of psychic-witch-feedback-mind-meld thing on Stefan.  It knocks sense back into Stefan, who is horrified more about Elena seeing him in that state than by what he has actually done, and he runs home.

Elena blames herself for Stefan’s condition, and goes to the Salvatore home, determined to save Stefan from himself.  The more she promises to stand by him, the angrier he gets, until he throws her against the wall.  hitting rock bottom, Stefan crumbles into apologies and tears.  Elena comforts him - then pumps him full of vervane tranquilizer.  Damon helps drag him into the cellar chamber that Stefan put him in at the beginning of the season.

Elsewhere, John Gilbert tells Damon that the reason he is back in town is to retrieve an invention his brother made that was stolen by a vampire named Pearl.  He wants Damon to help him find out who Pearl is.  John inadvertently finds out on his own when he asks Jenna about Anna and Jeremy (who have made up after their “turn me so I can be with someone else” spat).  Meanwhile, Damon agrees to forgive Pearl and Anna for their thuggish vampire boarders when Pearl voluntarily gives up the Gilbert pocket watch.  Pearl thought she was stealing the vampire detector all those years ago, but it turned out to be just a pocket watch.  No one seems to know that Jeremy has the real one.

Dig It or Bury It?
I did not think it could get any more afterschool special-y after last week’s episode - yet I am proven wrong.  This episode was like a bad afterschool special mixed with an episode of Intervention, with just a hint of “I’m so excited” episode of Saved By The Bell.  When Stefan is discovered feasting on Amber, the shock and horror on his face looked like that of a life-long meth head - with more blood.

When Damon stepped in to be Elena’s escort at the pageant, the two of them seemed to relax, and I swear I saw a smile and an eye twinkle.  I am okay with them becoming allies, but I don’t want this to turn into some obnoxious love triangle.  Been there, done that, hated the movie.

I’ve never been one to be particularly turned on by vampires, but one scene in particular quickened my heart rate.  Just before he lays into Amber, Stefan describes in meticulous detail what he wants to do to Amber: how he wants to rip out her throat, shred open her skin to get to that delicately pulsing vein, where he would open it to ensure she wouldn’t bleed out.  Maybe I have been watching too many slasher movies, but that was hotter than any sex scene.

Blood Lust
See above.  It was both “blood” and “lust” in one hot scene.

Dear Diary
Uncle John tells Jeremy that ancestor Jonathan journaled his whole life.  He was surprised that Jeremy had read one, as most were “locked up tight.”  When asked what John thought of them, he shrugs it off as the ramblings of a drunken loon.

Jeremy also admits to Anna that he read his sister’s diary and knows everything about Vicki, Stefan, and Damon.  On the one hand, he is furious that Elena would just wipe his memory like that, but on the other hand, he is glad that he doesn’t remember the monstrous Vicki.

I’m a little worried because it seems that next week will be another “very special episode,” this time with Stefan detoxing, and all the drama that comes with withdrawal.  But I have faith in Kevin Williamson and company - they got me totally hooked on a show I worried would be Twilight on the small screen.  I would watch Vampire Diaries even if I wasn’t being paid to do so.  And frankly, you keep the claret flowing and the snarkiness plentiful, I can forgive a few sweeps-month cliches.