6:32pm PT by Philiana Ng
'Vampire Diaries': Elena Loses Everything
[Warning: Spoilers from Thursday's episode, "Stand by Me."]
The Vampire Diaries has said goodbye to one of Mystic Falls' own.
In Thursday's episode, "Stand by Me," the question of whether Elena's (Nina Dobrev) younger brother Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) would come back to life was addressed, and there wasn't a pleasant conclusion. While it looked like there could be a slim chance that Jeremy would return and things would get back to whatever normal was, that didn't happen this time. And, for once, the cure -- which is now gone, thanks to Katherine -- didn't play front-and-center like in so many of the previous episodes.
It takes Elena a while to come to grips with the fact that she's lost yet another person close to her, and when she does, it's an ugly revelatory moment. "He's dead! He's dead! He's been dead this entire time! Oh my god! I can smell him!" she yells hysterically. Remember that sire bond between Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Elena? It's back in full force, and it comes at the best -- er, the worst -- time possible. Just as an emotional Elena's about to go through with burning her home -- with Jeremy's lifeless body in it -- as part of an elaborate cover story, Damon persuades her to turn off her humanity, the only thing she had that differentiated her from, say, him. It's a big moment for the series and for all the characters involved. In the end, Elena does what she proposed before (goodbye Gilbert house, goodbye Jeremy), only without emotion. What happens now?
The biggest moments from Thursday's episode:
8:02 p.m.: So is Jeremy dead? The Salvatores figure out that the younger Gilbert is part of The Five, so the Gilbert ring will no longer wake him up. They obviously don't tell Elena this. "She won't survive this," Damon concedes. Their only hope now? Bonnie (Kat Graham).
8:05 p.m.: It's the scene The CW released late last week, with Shane breaking the news to Bonnie that Jeremy's dead, so she'd best believe that they can resurrect the dead!
8:06 p.m.: Even vampires have to use human tricks, like turning on the water to have a secret conversation. But dun dun dun, Elena breaks up Caroline (Candice Accola) and Stefan's (Paul Wesley) little convo to tell them that she knows about the whole supernatural thing with her brother. "I'm not in denial," she'll say before leaving.
8:11 p.m.: "I can't believe that after all that, the cure is ... gone." Caroline's line pretty much covers the entire fourth season. Quickly thereafter, Caroline and Stefan start to smell Jeremy's decomposing body. No!
8:14 p.m.: Bonnie is angry.
8:15 p.m.: Jeremy has a broken neck. Crazy blood loss. Sucks to be the messenger, Dr. Meredith Fell (Torrey DeVitto). She wants Elena to start to accept that Jeremy really is gone. A desperate Elena wants Meredith to use magic because, hey, the usual medical rules aren't in play here. (She does have a point.) But it's the sight of Matt (Zach Roerig) seeing Jeremy's lifeless body that causes Elena to snap out of it. Even in times of grief, she becomes the consoler.
8:22 p.m.: Someone could write a whole philosophy paper on "Damon Logic."
8:26 p.m.: Shane (David Alpay) talks about the three massacres and how they play into the completion of a triangle that's needed. "There needs to be another massacre!" Shane says nonchalantly. So 12 more people need to die. It's a vision of a dying Jeremy that ultimately changes Bonnie's mind: "I'll do whatever it takes." Time is of the essence.
8:28 p.m.: Perfect timing? Suddenly Bonnie appears before Damon, just when Stefan tells him he needs to get back to Mystic Falls -- even if it means without Bonnie. What does Bonnie have to do to bring Jeremy back?
8:32 p.m.: Hey, a Vicki mention! R.I.P. Matt's getting pretty deep with his whole spiritual outlook. "Sometimes it's OK to have hope, because sometimes it's the only thing that keeps me going."
8:36 p.m.: Bonnie has to complete the "expression triangle," aka kill 12 more people, per Shane's crazy plan. So while Damon tries to tell Stefan that Bonnie's gone wacko (no thanks to Shane), Bonnie tells the others about the idea that if she does this, she can release the "veil" from the other side ensuring every supernatural being. Sorry, but this is a pretty terrible idea. It's a phone call from April that has Elena finally coming to grips with the fact that Jeremy is really gone. "I'm sorry, he's dead," she says without any emotion.
8:44 p.m.: "He's dead! He's dead! He's been dead this entire time! Oh my god! I can smell him!"
8:45 p.m.: What sort of crazy plan does Elena have now? She needs a cover story, so she's concocted this even crazier idea to burn down the Gilbert house with Jeremy's body in it. I get where she's coming from but, uh ... Thankfully, Damon catches the lit match ... Thank god.
8:50 p.m.: This will definitely be water-cooler talk. Damon tells Elena to turn off her humanity. Oh Lord, the sire bond is alive and well.
8:55 p.m.: A small scene, but a bawling Matt is never a good thing.
8:56 p.m.: Stefan: "Her humanity, Damon, it was all she had left ... She had you." In darkness comes light, and Stefan and Damon start to let go of their fight.
8:58 p.m.: This is a shocking ending. Guess the Elena we knew will never be. She may be gone forever. After Stefan tries to tell her that maybe there will come a day when she will want to come home, Elena -- with her emotions turned off -- sets fire to her home. "I won't," she says, emotionless, before dropping the match. The final scene of the episode is striking, with the body of the youngest Gilbert catching fire. Goodbye.
- Damon, after using Rebekah as a shield: "Sorry. Better you than me."
What are your thoughts on the episode?
The Vampire Diaries airs at 8 p.m. Thursdays on The CW.