The Vampire Diaries Recap: It’s the End of the World As We Know It

The Vampire Diaries

Promised Land
Season 5 Episode 21
Editor’s Rating 4 stars

The Vampire Diaries

Promised Land
Season 5 Episode 21
Editor’s Rating 4 stars
Photo: Guy D’Alema/CW

Stefan died. Oh, sorry, was that supposed to be a spoiler? Should I not have led with that? I was just taking my cues from The Vampire Diaries, who seemed to kill Stefan off with the intention of a substitute teacher doing roll call. I appreciate the show’s ability to keep surprising us, but I prefer Stefan on this side, thanks. I’m not interested in a season six where he is all in blue shadows and backlit, running around astronomically tall trees. I want Stefan here, in color, where he can make out with Caroline. Also, why does Stefan always have to suffer so much? He was in that safe drowning on repeat and now he’s DEAD? For a show about two vampire brothers, one of them seems to be doing the heavy tragedy lifting lately. Is that controversial? Are you angry? Do you think Damon suffers, too? Read my lips: STE-FAN. IS. DEA-D. I don’t care.

Let’s recap in points.

“Yeah, he helped me open my first savings account.” Why anyone plans for the future around here is beyond me, but plus 7. I kind of liked the Ian/Caroline combo in this opening scene. Plus Damon called her his “sexy frenemy.”

I have seen Elena’s blood being drained from her body way too many times for my own liking. And every time I’m subjected to this, it gets more graphic. Minus 20.

“Collect calls are still a thing?” ALSO: They have been gone for four days?! There have been entire SEASONS of this show that have taken place over the span of, like, 48 hours. Here is a note my editor gives me on every single one of my novels: The timing feels off. Minus 10.

“No idea where we are. We’re in the middle of nowhere.” Right. With a barn. And a pay phone. Minus 4.

I thought Ian was doing great work in this episode. Just really solid Damon Sassing. Plus 8.

Elena and Stefan hobbling down some random (paved, mind you) road was hilarious. Why were there no cars? No matter. Did it make anyone else think about that time they went down the (same?) street on a motorcycle and Elena stood up and lifted her hands and we all died laughing? Plus 8.

Our blood. Don’t hog the blame.” I can’t believe it has taken him five years to say that to her. Elena is always hogging the blame. Plus 7.

“If you want to be with him, just be with him.” Can we vote on a line? Because I vote on this one. Plus 30.

Crazy New Twins! Love them! Is it weird that when the chick said “we have to kill Stefan and Elena,” my first thought wasn’t don’t you dare! But more like: If you did that, would you get to stay? Let me run some numbers on whether that is a fair trade or not? Minus 15 for my inability to dislike these two.

Did that traveler really have to kill Pam’s husband? Seemed unnecessary. Minus 4.

“If Caroline Forbes was here right now, we would both be laughing.”—Stefan Salvatore. You know how married people are always saying things like, “I don’t know why our relationship works, but he makes me laugh?” Yeah. That. Plus 20.

You shouldn’t have looked so surprised when Elena boobed and haired up her outfit to hitchhike, Stefan. This exact strategy has worked on you (multiple times). Plus 10.

I’ve figured out something about Paul Wesley’s face. When he is expressing the emotion of “in love,” his eyes are wide open. When he does not care about you, at all, maybe he is MILDY amused, that is it, he squints. B.r.b., gonna write a dissertation. Plus 18.

“You just described homeless people, aging hipsters, and Matt Donovan.” I would be offended by that, but Matt is usually homeless … he is not, however, a hipster (Jeremy is, though). No points.

“There is no spell … So no, I don’t think you should kill Tyler.” Five years in, I love Bonnie. Plus 40.

The way Markos was talking about the Travelers made them seem like people in an infomercial living with genetic hair loss. “You don’t know it, but they’re all around you. In the face of the mother at drop off. In your co-worker down the hall.” Minus 6.

Have we been to this wine cellar before? Why does no one ever drink wine on this show? What is even the point of anything? Plus 30 for the existence of this place but minus 30 for these idiots never using it.

The Travelers all chanting together as blood ran out of their noses was like a scene from a zombie movie I would never watch, because I hate horror (I know, I know, I’m deeply unqualified for this). But plus 15 because people are into that kind of thing (just not me).

And then all the vampires started to get shot wounds (I’m not 100 percent). What was happening was that they were experiencing all of their deaths again? Except for Caroline, who was just looking awesome, packing for the Other Side because Stefan will probably be there, and they are still slow burning. Plus 20.

Dialogue callbacks work less well when they happen one episode later, but that Damon/Elena kiss was still nice. Stefan squinted. Plus 14.

Stefan DIED?! Jesus Christ, TVD. Are you kidding me with this? Minus an infinite amount of points for that, but more importantly, for the completely bullshit promo that came directly after, in which no one seemed to give one single shit. Look, I get how this works. I know that Paul Wesley is not leaving TVD. That is not a possible thing. I also know that death has come to mean so little on this show that I am beginning to fear young people’s reactions to global news. But besides Caroline howling over Stefan’s stone body, nothing about that seemed particularly epic. It’s STEFAN. Am I insane to think we need more of a moment? Is it super retro of me to think when the main character dies it should be epic? Am I old?

In the infinite negative this week. I don’t even think that’s English, but all of the negative points? Yep, we have them.

Next week we … I don’t know. Bring Stefan back? Watch some people mourn over him? Blow up a town? As always: @RebeccaASerle

The Vampire Diaries Recap: Promised Land