The Vampire Diaries: “I’ll Remember” Review
The first episode of Season 6 of The Vampire Diaries felt like a reset. A complete reset, which could have doubled as a series pilot. In many ways, this kind of opening was fitting as a follow-up to the show’s weakest season. It gave us an opportunity to see where the characters are at months after Mystic Falls became a no magic zone. Each character is dealing with the events that ended last season in their own way. For Alaric that means adjusting to being alive again and a vampire.
One of the more interesting turns in the series is Elena’s slow descent into becoming a junkie. She’s been getting herbs from Luke that allow Elena to talk to Damon, who is locked off in a diminished Other Side. It wouldn’t have been the first time that Elena has shown signs of an addictive personality. If her prior relationship with Stefan wasn’t a nice little clue, the threat of her being a ripper is another clue. Now, she is thoroughly addicted to seeing Damon and that means continuing to take the drugs. Luke sees Elena’s growing addiction, but in his attempts to help her, he’d gotten on her bad side. No one wants to be on Elena’s bad side. The real problem with the drugs is how hungry it makes Elena. Which lead to an impromptu feeding where her victim got away before glamouring her.
The other Gilbert is in just as bad a place, as Jeremy has become a shell of his former self with Bonnie gone. Where as Elena is willing to sacrifice her health to see Damon, Jeremy shut down in Bonnie’s absence. He’s been couch surfing, playing video games, and hooking up with rand girls to numb out the pain of losing Bonnie.
Mystic Falls has been getting out of hand. Apparently even with the magic removed, the town is still corrupt as both Matt and Elizabeth Forbes are hiding Elena’s attack. Sure, they aren’t really happy about having to do so, but as some of the few people who actually knows what is going on they do so with ease. As much as it may be wrong, the supernatural people in the town are also the people they care about most.
There is a growing romantic tension between Liv and Tyler that isn’t quite hitting the mark. Maybe this is because Tyler swings from being a likeable character to highly unlikeable. Sometimes that happens between episodes. Throwing Tyler’s humanity back into the picture and all the frustration that is comes with it, doesn’t make him the picture of the loveable bad boy. Combine Tyler with a very aggressive and mean-spirited Liv, you get a couple that might work well together, but aren’t satisfying to watch. While, I’m interested in seeing how that relationship evolves over the season, I’m not invested in it like many of the other relationships the show has developed in the past.
The relationship between Stefan and Caroline being one of the most interesting of late. Last season, we spent quite a bit of time seeing the two grow closer. When Stefan took off it was understandable. There was nothing tying him to Mystic Falls any more. Elena was no longer his girl and his brother was dead. All the people still left would only remind him of everything he’d lost. His leaving makes sense for the character, but story telling wise it left the episode feeling too disparate. If his reaction to getting a call from Caroline is any indication of what to come, we will be seeing Stefan in Mystic Falls outskirts before too long. Even if it is only so he can tell everyone to just leave him alone.
After spending nearly the whole episode seeing Damon materialize in Elena’s hallucinations all episode it was fitting to see him for real at the end. While it was nice to check in with Damon and Bonnie as well, it left more questions than it gave answers. We know they are living some sort of pleasant homey life in a cabin, but we know little else as they read their newspapers. With any luck we will get some sort of idea of whether the place is really as nice as it seems and if they want to get out of there at all.