The Vampire Diaires: Turning Point to the Same
I’m not sure if it’s because we are in the midst of November sweeps or because a certain other romantic vampire franchise released its latest installment this week, but The CW had been promising that The Vampire Diaries would be really explosive this Thursday with an episode blatantly titled, “The Turning Point.” Was it? Not really. But before I get into a description of the plot and the episode’s overall quality, can I mention how irritatingly brief each segment between commercial breaks was on this episode? There was seriously a commercial break every five minutes! I know they gotta pay the bills, but this was ridiculous.
Sorry. I had to let it out . . . Anyway, when we left them last week, Stefan and Damon Salvatore were getting ready to ditch town and stop putting the innocent civilians of Mystic Falls at risk, but Logan has shown back up in full vampire mode and is on a bit of a killing spree. Stefan and Damon couldn’t very well leave with a murderous vampire still in town so the hunt is on to find him. Logan manages to kidnap Caroline in an attempt to get revenge on her mom, the sheriff, but a valiant rescue by the Salvatore Brothers puts a stop to that fairly quickly. Stefan takes Caroline to safety while Damon stays behind to finish off Logan and figure who turned him into a vampire in the first place. Just as he is about to bash Logan’s head in with a tire iron though, they make a deal to meet at the mysterious church in the woods where Logan promises to reveal his secret.
Before Logan and Damon get a chance to meet up, the mysterious new teacher in town shows up and puts a stake in Logan’s heart thus killing off yet another character really quickly. I honestly thought he’d be around for awhile but as they say – easy come, easy go!
Meanwhile, Stefan and Elena, who have been on again, off again every episode since the show began, have a moment after he gets Caroline home safely. Elena confesses her love for him and the two proceed to have sex in a scene that features every cliche sex scene shot that you’ve ever seen. Episode director, J. Miller Tobin, could have certainly broken new ground with even just the slightest hint of imagination, but I suppose cliche is just what we have to accept.
Post coitus, Elena finds an old picture of Stefan’s great love, Katherine, and naturally freaks out when she notices that it looks just like her. But rather than talk it over with Stefan she bails and on the drive home hits a shadowy figure standing in the middle of the road. Her car flips over and she remains conscious to see the figure pull himself off the ground in mint condition and walk towards the car. And just as we’re about to see who it is . . . the episode ends! And guess what: the show will be in reruns until January so let the rampant speculation begin! I have my money on it being either Alaric, the mysterious school teacher, or the creepy Mayor of Mystic Falls (Robert Pralgo), but this show has proven to be a bit unpredictable, so your guess is as good as mine.
Overall, this episode was a bit of a letdown. The network promised epic changes and revelations but I feel that we got neither. There were also some very tedious scenes with minor characters that ended up carrying no weight at all and seemed to act only as filler for the handful of other scenes where things actually happened. The series as a whole remains very hit or miss for me personally. I still think it maintains promise but if they don’t wow us when the show returns with new episodes this winter, the bloom could be off the rose very quickly, which is a shame because the Twilight series already has a corner on the boring market.
For another take on this episode, check out Vampires, Witches, and… Werewolves? by Carekee Fung.
Season 1, Episode 10: The Turning Point (originally aired Nov. 19, 2009)
For more on The Vampire Diaries, click here.
Thursdays at 8/7c on The CW
Photographs courtesy of The CW and Quantrell Colbert