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[Warning: Major spoilers from the midseason finale.]
It’s wintertime in Mystic Falls, but that doesn’t mean the gang can let their hair down, so to speak.
On The Vampire Diaries‘ midseason finale, “O Come, All Ye Faithful,” a main character lost a parental figure by the hands of Klaus — but s/he wasn’t the only person who perished during the action-packed, mythology-heavy episode. With Damon and Elena answering the age-old question of whether to go through with the freeing of their controversial sire bond or not (it’s an impactful revelation), Stefan realizing that the two are much closer than he originally thought and a reborn Klaus more dangerous than ever thanks to Tyler’s failed plan, it’s no wonder the holidays aren’t exactly the most pleasant time of year for the townspeople.
Here are the biggest moments from the final episode of 2012:
8:01 p.m.: Doing the “selfless” thing sometimes isn’t the easiest thing to do, as Damon and Elena quickly learn. Though he assured his brother Stefan that he would free her from him in a timely fashion, Damon hasn’t gone through with his plan just yet. Letting go is never easy, as depicted in a later phone conversation between the brothers about just this topic that has Damon lying through his teeth.
8:06 p.m.: Is this the beginning of the end for Caroline and Tyler? The new alpha male has created a master plan that will rid his hybrid crew of Klaus once and for all, but it calls for him to sacrifice his body for a very, very long time. Caroline, obviously, isn’t down with the plan. So whom does she go to for help? Stefan. That doesn’t sit well with Tyler.
8:08 p.m.: Jeremy is still struggling with his hunter ways, and when he is forced to invite his vampire sister Elena into the house, it’s all well and good — for two seconds — before the younger Gilbert nearly stabs Elena to shreds. It’s been said before but it should be stated again: The ongoing battle between Jeremy and Elena is ripe with dramatic and emotional tension. At a time when Elena is parentless (R.I.P. Alaric and Aunt Jenna), the forever teenager is grabbing at straws to hold onto any semblance of a blood family.
8:13 p.m.: The ruthless Klaus paints snowflakes. There’s something serene about that.
8:17 p.m.: Jeremy, at least when his hunter colors shine through, will go to great lengths — even his own death — to make sure Elena dies. The fact that Elena’s attempt at reprogramming Jeremy to think a different way has failed is a metaphor for what she’s going through with the sire bond ordeal with Damon that’s been causing strife among the group.
8:27 p.m.: Damon confronts the mysterious Professor Shane about why he’s so interested in the cure. He and Elena find out an interesting tidbit from the professor: Dig up Silas and it’ll lead to the cure and solve the Klaus/Tyler problem.
8:34 p.m.: Caroline proposes an alternative plan to save Tyler, but Hayley ain’t OK with it. Caroline’s plan tasks the crew with putting Klaus’ essence into Rebekah’s daggered body; it’ll kill two Originals with one stone. Tyler’s in, but Hayley’s not, so she makes sure Caroline is .. ineffective for the rest of the evening.
8:42 p.m.: It’s taken a while but Jeremy can finally hug his sister without, well, wanting to strangle her.
8:45 p.m.: April, oh April. Being human in a supernatural world has its quirks, like not realizing that Caroline isn’t human like the nine other people in town. Unfortunately for Caroline, she learns a little too late that April can’t be compelled to forget what she just saw. Whoops.
8:47 p.m.: Hayley just ripped Tyler’s whole world apart when she admits to him what she — and on a smaller level, Professor Shane — has done. Finally, after weeks of seeing Klaus handicapped, does the evil neck-wringer come back with a vengeance, sacrificing the hybrids Tyler had been leading.
8:52 p.m.: Being a vampire isn’t for everyone. As Damon watches Jeremy and Elena act like a normal family, he broods: “I want that again for you.” Damon does what he promised his brother in the last episode: set Elena free — for good. “This is what I want. This is what’ll make me happy.” Surely it can’t be that simple, can it? Meanwhile, Caroline breaks the news to Stefan that Damon and Elena are as together as a couple can be. Talk about bad timing.
8:57 p.m.: Tyler arrives at the scene of Klaus’ mass mayhem — without realizing that April was witness to Klaus’ gory crime. It’s safe to assume she’ll be the one who lets Rebekah out of her daggered state, as was teased to in the preview for the midseason premiere.
8:58 p.m.: Poor Tyler’s mom. She doesn’t see it coming. Before she can even get in a word edge-wise, Klaus does the unthinkable: “You’re all he has. There’s a beautiful symmetry, don’t you think?” before he drowns her without an ounce of remorse. R.I.P. Carol Lockwood.
Other observations from the episode:
- Klaus and Stefan are one in the same. It’s always nice when a character reminds Stefan that he was once the Ripper.
- How many of the main characters are parentless on the show?
- Poor Matt had only one scene, and it was to service Caroline and April. Here’s to hoping for more screentime.
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