THE VAMPIRE DIARIES: You're Undead to Me - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

THE VAMPIRE DIARIES: You’re Undead to Me

October 9, 2009 by  

I don’t know you guys … I just don’t know. I really like this show a lot, and I loved the Stefan and Elena stuff, and the Damon storyline was good too. The other stories have so much potential, but this episode crossed the line of waaay too much cheese a few too many times for me last night. But let’s start with the good.

Elena being annoyed at Stefan was good—I like Nina Dobrev playing her with some attitude, and I liked Stefan being forced to make it up to her. That dinner scene was BEYOND adorable, and I love them showing Stefan’s interests throughout the years (and that he can eat garlic!). And getting a little Katherine backstory was good. And I loved the car wash, where she was taking her top layer off and got stuck, and said, “So not sexy,” and then he fixed her hair and disagreed. I mean, HELLO. So freaking adorable, right?

And Damon trapped in his vervain prison was interesting too. I was completely fascinated by what was going to happen to him (a living mummy), and the mind games he was playing to try to escape. And it was really interesting to note how powerful he still was, even in an extremely weakened state, especially over Caroline. Which does raise questions of how much of that has to do with how much of her blood he’s had or with that crystal that she picked up. There are still a lot of holes in our knowledge about exactly what kind of control Damon exerts over Caroline and how it affects her when she is and isn’t under his spell, but it appears that she isn’t currently aware that he’s a vampire and she has big blank spots in her memory … but she obviously knows Damon, so it’s not ALL the time they spend together. So is it selective? But I’m still really engaged in that story so the mystery hasn’t become tedious or frustrating yet, and I’m pretty okay with it.

But then there’s Jeremy and Vickie, and I kind of just have to think of this storyline and sigh. Me and Billy snarked all over it and I have to say, I’m a little bummed because I LOVED it at the beginning when Jeremy was just so happy and it was all cute and cuddly and romantic. And then Vickie had to start smashing up pain pills and Jeremy had to become an anti-drug ad from 1988. I mean, I know I got my hard-hitting “drugs are bad” info from the Johnny Dakota episode of Saved by the Bell back in the day, but are we seriously still doing that? And isn’t 8/7c a little late for an After School Special? I don’t know, it just bugged. And it’s like, if your target demo is 18-34 (which I assume it is, unless I’m wrong and it’s younger), we’re all old enough to not be preached at about smoking pot and stealing pain pills. Well, okay, maybe my roommate did stuff like that my junior year of college, but I don’t think she even watches this show so just quit it, okay TVD?

Speaking of … substances (okay, terrible segue, I’m sorry), they really need to sort this vervain business out. I do not want this show to go down the Smallville/kryptonite path, which more than all the Clark whining and the Lana Lang and the product placement, bugs the HELL out of me. The problem with them and kryptonite, which I don’t want to see happen with vervain, is that it never has a consistent effect. Clark can be completely paralyzed by a tiny rock of it, or rolling around reaching for stuff in a room filled wall to wall with it. Sometimes it weakens his powers, sometimes it knocks him out. It’s just so obviously there for the writers’ convenience that not only does it cheapen the story value, but it also takes you totally out of the story.

So here, I get that Damon actually ingested vervain and that made him significantly weaker than Stefan, no problems there. My real issue is between the room full of vervain and Elena’s necklace. If just her wearing the necklace weakened him enough to not be able to mindfreak her and to feel the slap, what affect does it have on Stefan, who is already much weaker than Damon, and how does that translate to an entire room full of it? And why is Damon being in a room with it bad, but Stefan can get close to it too and not seem to have anything happen? I’m really hoping we get some answers next week, because it’s looking like Stefan’s going to have to ‘fess up soon.

Okay, so I know that Bonnie’s story inched along this week and hey, Jasmine Guy! but I am not at the point of caring yet, so I’m just going to skip over that.

I think what we really need to discuss here is the adults. Sigh again. I do like Aunt Jenna, really only because she’s sassy and funny, but Logan does nothing for me. He has gayface, which is fine, unless you’re trying to play a role where you’re attracted to a super hot female who is also attracted to you, and then no. I don’t buy it. But I was really trying to overlook it, but then I just got COMPLETELY put off when Elena was looking at old newsreel footage and Logan was dressed up in old-timey reporter gear as his Grandpappy Fell or whatever … it was SO stupid, and so insulting to our intelligence. I got so irritated that I started yelling at the TV (one of my favorite hobbies, btw), and Billy started making old-timey shouts of “Extra, Extra!” and cartoony newsreel noises. I mean, here’s the thing—I know you guys have probably blown most of you “adult” budget, since you have one gorgeous 25-ish-year-old (Jenna); Caroline’s mom, who always looks fresh off the set of Reno 911; and the now dead Zach. You don’t even have Mr. Tanner, the all-in-one teacher/coach/chaperone on the payroll anymore, so how’s about you spring for a different actor for a vintage newscast? Good LORD. It was cool to see young hot Stefan in the background of the newsreel, but it would’ve been way cooler if it hadn’t been doused in more cheese than you can buy at the Wisconsin State Fair, okay?

And one more thing about that damn newsreel—they were trying to get a look at the body. HELLO. This happened in 1953, and I call so much BS on that, because no way would news stations have done that in 1953. And okay, I know it’s a minor detail and I know I might be being hard on this show for what it is, but it’s because I like it—I was definitely this hard on Chuck when it started and it’s one of my favorites. This show has a lot of potential, but paying attention to little details like that and taking the time to make it at least somewhat grounded in reality where you can (since it IS a sci-fi/fantasy show, after all) are what separates entertaining enough shows to really, really amazing shows. Supernatural has been really successful with this, as has The Office—it’s definitely absurd, but it always makes sense to the internal logic of the show and the reality that they bring to it in the details makes everything else flow. You just really can’t overlook the importance of the small things, unless your goal is appealing to the lowest common denominator and if that’s the case, then just go work at According to Jim and leave the vampires out of it.

Anyway, with all that in mind, this town is small enough to have one restaurant, but big enough to have its own news station, but small enough that the high school carwash is news? To people besides the pedos? What’s done is done there, but these are the kinds of things I’m talking about—DETAILS. They matter. The devil is in them, and I think the Winchester boys would agree that the devil is a pretty huge deal, am I right?

So I know I’ve done a ton of complaining about this episode but I think it was all legit, but once again they’ve done a nice job of advancing the plot and I’m really excited for next week—I’ll be bummed when this show is in reruns because it’s just such a nice complement to all the other Thursday night programming—it pairs SO well with Supernatural but it’s also lighter and fluffier, so it makes it easier to transition between the NBC comedies and the CW sci-fi (I guess? I’m having a hard time mentally categorizing Supernatural, but whatever, you know what I mean), which I DO watch all in one night, much to the detriment of my to-do list. Right now, between these two stations, I have an almost completely perfect night of television. The only thing that would make it better is taking off stupid Jay Leno and replacing it with Chuck at 10/9c. But Vampire Diaries is a huge part of making all that work for me—it’s a fun show, I just want them to pull it in a little tighter in the future.

Okay, what did you all think? Did you share any of my beefs, or was it all good for you? Any theories on Damon’s powers over Caroline? Are you feeling the chemistry between Stefan and Elena? And do you think Damon is going to kill Vickie all the way? And how about that last scene, with Stefan all grabbing his stake and Elena showing up out of nowhere demanding to know what he is? Pretty great cliffhanger, huh? Discuss it all in the comments, I’m excited to hear your thoughts!

SB has many interests, including photography, her pets, entertainment, traveling and writing. She does have a day job, but that mostly amounts to her being a sarcastic young woman with a lot of time on her hands, which is why she appreciates the opportunity to recap.


10 Responses to “THE VAMPIRE DIARIES: You’re Undead to Me”

  1. strunkette on October 9th, 2009 12:22 pm

    Whew so much comment on 🙂

    First off a few things that I had a different take on:
    I felt like the no-mind-trick-vervain necklace worked because she’s pretty strongminded to begin with and he wasn’t expecting it at all which also helped with the slap. He thought he had her mind-warped therefore his guard was down. It didn’t hurt it was just surprising. (Though I probably shouldn’t have to come up with that all on my own. I’m a problem solver at heart so I like to work it out. I’m not sure the average view would want to pu that much thinking into it…) I think his control over Caroline was so strong because he’d drank so much of her blood that it gave him major control over her…plus all the mind melding. That being said I agree that they need to get all the lore and properties in place. I’m willing to believe in any scifi explanation but there’s nothing I hate more than inconsistency.

    Gosh I could go on and on over your review and the show but I’m at work hehe!

    Does it surprise anyone else that they are going “there” so quickly? I really thought they’d drag out the reveal much longer. I question a bit where the storyline can go. It’s definitely keeping my attention. I’m really enjoying TVD and can overlook some of its faults for now.

  2. SB on October 9th, 2009 2:40 pm

    We’re so on the same page these last couple days, Strunkette! The only point I slightly disagree on, although it’s TOTAL speculation, is I thought the slap did hurt a little, or at least we were supposed to think so, since Damon wiggled his jaw around.

    About them going there so soon … yeah, I could’ve gone either way on it. Obviously between this series and Twilight, they got four books out of it and (confession time!) I read the first Vampire Diaries online at the publisher’s website … I’m so embarassed to type the URL but it’s at and just click browse inside or something, and you can read that one for free. And it’s pretty much got me hooked, but I’m going to be patient and ask for the other ones for Christmas. But anyway, this show really has a lot of differences from the book, unlike Twilight, which is as close as possible, and True Blood, which is close but expanded (especially regarding secondary characters). This one just sort of seems “inspired by” the source material, if you know what I mean. So I don’t really know what the plan is, but I’m with you–it’s keeping my attention so I’m just gonna go with it.

  3. strunkette on October 9th, 2009 3:31 pm

    Hey no need to be embarrassed. I’ll admit to you and all the GMMR readers that I read the “leaked to the world so never completed/published version of Twilight from Edward’s point of view” manuscript on Stephanie Meyers’ website in one sitting. AND I really wish she’d completed/published it! 🙂 I will be using the link above to read TVD so thank you, hehe!

    We also seem to be on the same page when it comes to what shows we watch. I love how diverse your tastes are…much like mine. Though the true test of our likemindedness (not a word, I know but I like it!) may come from your soon to come debate with Erik over Community. I’m interested to know where you stand.

    Keep up the superb writing and I’ll try to comment as best I can.

  4. SB on October 9th, 2009 5:13 pm

    Aw Strunkette, you’re great! And not just because you just made me feel less alone about reading Midnight Sun. Sigh. I totally did. More than once. I’m so lame, but I can own it. 🙂

    I’m not sure where we are on the Community debate, so I’ll go ahead and tell you which side I’m on (SPOILER ALERT!)–I am MADLY freaking in love with it. You?

  5. strunkette on October 9th, 2009 6:12 pm

    “Spoiler alert” HA! Here’s where the bubble bursts wah,wah 🙁 I knew it couldn’t last…can we pretend I didn’t ask? Hopefully you still think I’m great?!?!?!

    I’m not loving it and not hating it. I LOVE Joel McHale and I really love each of the characters individually (well still not sure about Chevy). I’m just not finding the funny at this point. I thought the storyline this week was sweet (Jeff and Shirley bonding, Jeff trying to be a better person) and parts were funny…I don’t know…I so want it to be good. Dang it!

    I think it could be like The Office. I admit that at first I wasn’t convinced. Personally I thought it took them awhile to find their voice outside of the UK version (which I watched and liked). Now it is one of my favorites. (Should I even be admitting that here? Do I need to duck? 🙂 )

    I still believe we are kindred (tv) spirits. All is not lost! HEHE!

  6. Isorah on October 10th, 2009 2:28 am

    Maybe it didn’t work on Stephan because he had his ring on.

  7. Give Me My Remote on October 10th, 2009 9:27 am

    “Caroline’s mom, who always looks fresh off the set of Reno 911”

    HA! So true.

    I finally was able to watch TVD last night and I actually liked it a lot. You made some very valid points, SB. They do ignore way to many details. Last week I voiced my issue with the lack of details about the Caroline/Damon relationship. There again the lack of details makes their connection more cumbersome than intriguing.

    I was in the same boat as Elena and getting a little annoyed with the lack of info from/about Stefan. He’s one of the lead characters and his speech in the kitchen about his likes and dislikes (which for the record I really enjoyed), was the most we ever heard his talk in one sitting.

    I really didn’t expect them to have Elena discover Stefan’s true identity this early in the season. That really threw me for a loop. Of course, the scene felt a little Twilight to me, but I guess at this point it can’t probably be avoided.

    The Bonnie stuff is really starting to irk me. The girl sets a car on fire, everyone is freaked and then the fire just went out? Stefan notices that she did it and the scene just ends? WTF?

    And damn, Whitley Gilbert is looking ROUGH.

  8. Kimber on October 12th, 2009 12:59 pm

    So, again I’m watching this show late! But better late than never, right? This episode had a lot of cheese, you’re right about that, but I still enjoyed it. It’s like my kind of light, and fluffy sci-fi show of the week.

    I, too, am looking for answers on the vervain, and how it can have such a severe effect on Damon, and yet nothing on Stefan. Does it have something to do with him drinking human blood? We know that Stefan has refrained from that for a while now, so perhaps the vervain targets that in the system, rather than the vampirism? Just a thought.

    I’m totally feeling the Stefan-Elena chemistry, and the scene at the car wash was all happy, fluffy goodness. I love that Elena is not completely outwardly sexy, and that she has her geeky moments, and yet Stefan still loves her for it. And their look cook fest was really cute too.

    I actually have liked the Bonnie storyline, and have been waiting for them to develop it further. Add to that the fact that Jasmine Guy is now in the mix (hello Roxy, smart-assed cop!) and I’m totally stoked. Hopefully “Grams” will stick around for a bit, and we can add another adult to the town!

  9. SB on October 13th, 2009 10:53 am

    Strunkette, no need to duck. Lots of people aren’t that into Community and while it bums me out, I won’t throw garbage at you. 🙂 And I still think we’re TV soulmates too.

    Isorah, really interesting theory. I’ll be curious to see if that factors in, or if them taking the ring was just a precaution in case he escaped.

    LOL Kath to the Whitley Gilbert line. I’m with Kimber, albeit to a lesser extent–I’m glad to see JG, but this Bonnie thing has GOT to get less boring for me to stay interested. I mean, how do you make lighting a car on fire boring? I never would’ve thought it was possible, and yet here we are.

    And Kimber, good call on the geek sexy. She does have it going on without seeming like a tramp. 🙂

  10. strunkette on October 13th, 2009 3:51 pm

    Speaking of rings and other objects… The Vampire Hunter’s Club were looking for people who only come out at night which has kept them off the right trail so far. Now with Damon’s ring gone he might arouse suspicion. I’m also curious to see how the pocket watch and other items they’re collecting factor into the hunt.

    Thursday is rapidly approaching!