1110 A.D. Italy (I think). A witch -- of African ancestry, of course -- gathers five hunky young lads in the woods. She does a little hokey. She does a little pokey. She adds a dash of hocus, and pinch of pocus. Presto-chango, Buffy's mystical ancestors now have five suitable, heavily tattooed, potential (and oh yes, this episode uses that word) suitors. If only there'd been the internet dating back then (which I'm not completely discounting, since according to The Vampire Diaries, there were Vikings and horses in Virginia, even earlier), we might have created a super race of monster hunters, but I digress.
The Mikaelsons court one of The Five. His name is Alexander. Rebekah takes a shine to him. Since The Five hunt creatures of the night, and the Mikaelsons enjoy the luxury of deceptive daywalker rings, they wine and dine Alexander rather than kill him. Did we know The Originals needed daylight rings? Note to the IRS: See! The DVDs are a valid professional expense.
Rebekah gets Alexander alone. He explains his tattoo. It's a map to a secret anti-vamp weapon. Xander (how could I not) takes Becky to bed. He asks if she'll accompany him, when he leaves to follow the map. Ever eager for love, the Original Vampire Barbie is down with that plan. She listens intently as Xander explains that his sword holds the key to the mystical map tattooed upon his fine physique. She then asks about the curious dagger on his bedside table. Xander picks up the dagger and, dipping it in a small bottle of White Oak ash, explains that it is a special weapon to be used against a special sort of vampire. When Rebekah asks if all of his prey is so evil that they must be put down, Xander changes the subject, kisses her, fondles her and then daggers her. Poor Beckster.
While Xander is endaggering Becky, it seems the other 4/5s of The Five are daggering the other Mikaelsons. Aside from Klaus, Elijah is the only other Original we see, and I'd be much more excited about that had he washed his hair once in the century prior, but alas... The dagger doesn't work on Original Hybrid Klaus, so he kills their hunters and undaggers his siblings (except possibly Finn), browbeats Rebekah and gets her to confess that the ultimate anti-vamp weapon is a cure for vampirism.
Present. Bonnie is off to visit a nearby college. An anthropology professor there has taken over her grandmother's course load. He has some of her possessions, which he wants to give to Bonnie. The professor is a true believer in witchcraft, and when he's alone with Bonnie, he gets her to confess that while she did practice, she no longer does because she took it too far and there were consequences. The professor says he's learned a lot about magic in his travels, and there are other ways for her to practice her art. Bonnie is understandably intrigued.
Damon and Elena accompany Bonnie to the college. Damon's going to teach Elena how to identify prey, feed, control herself such that she doesn't kill her food, and compel her victims into forgetfulness. During Elena's first attempt, her compassion gets the better of her. Angel fans will feel me, when I complain that compassion is fast becoming the C-word equivalent of Mutant Enemy's overused champion.
Since it's Halloween, there's a Frat "Murder House" event. Damon and the girls dress up as Jack the Ripper and two of his victims. No, I don't know where or how they got their costumes, either. While Bonnie is off with the professor, Damon encourages Elena to find another meal ticket. When she sees a guy dropping a roofie in a girl's drink, Elena's compassion is rationalized into silence, and she feels free to feed, and I enjoy a brief fantasy featuring Elena as a vampiric Dexter. Damon has to stop her from killing the chump, which is kind of too bad. What bothers me more is that I think no one ever took the drugged drink away from that girl. I mean, Elena intentionally bumps into Roofie Rapist (RR) and his victim, but I think she spills RR's drink, not the girl's, because when Elena apologizes for her "clumsiness," it is to RR that she hands another drink.
Anyhow, after Elena makes come-hither eyes at RR, he follows her into an conveniently empty room. She compels him into silence, drinks her fill and then some. Damon stops her before she becomes a murderer. When he asks her how she feels, Elena admits she feels good, then hugs Damon and whispers in his ear that she wants more. She's only sort of talking about blood.
Elena and Damon dance with and feed on new victims, then dance with each other. I guess it's hot, but I really think the show is overdoing the fake blood. While blood vomitus (and really, any vomitus) bothers me, blood itself usually doesn't. I just wish Elena would wipe her mouth after dinner. Has vampirism smothered her commitment to hygiene, grooming, neatness, and darn it -- old-fashioned manners? Someone get her a napkin, or perhaps a hanky. Anyhow, Elena and Damon revel until Bonnie Wet-Blanket returns. Elena's compassion awakens and causes her to rush out of the Frat House, just when things were getting interesting. Bonnie follows. Elena decides she should be with Stefan and going through all of "this" with Stefan, so I can't decide if it's enjoying her meal that bothers her, of if it's the fact that she's so enjoying her lover's brother. Damon overhears the whole scene, gets his feelings hurt, imparts a little Vampire Philosophy, and says it's time to return home.
Meanwhile, back in Mystic Falls, Stefan goes to Klaus to find out about The Five. Klaus says they'll need Rebekah, and since she's currently disowned Klaus, he needs Stefan to lure the girl to their side. After Klaus cajoles him, Stefan does so by promising Rebekah a clean slate with him and perhaps Matt.
Rebekah and Stefan go to Klaus Haus for dinner, which features human food. I mean it features food humans eat, not humans as food. There's more talking than dining though because most of these scenes are the set-up to learning the 1110 A.D. backstory. When the reminiscing is done, Klaus immediately pisses off Rebekah, who storms out before telling them how to find the sword which will help them decipher the tattoo map. Klaus has Jeremy studying Connor's tattoo and sketching it because Jeremy is the only one who can see it, and when Klaus killed the Original Five, the then-visible tattoos disappeared. While Jeremy is drawing, Connor lets slip that the tattoo expands every time he kills another vampire.
Rebekah finds Stefan at Mossy Manse. She's sorry she stormed off, but she cannot deal with Klaus. So say all of us. When Stefan confesses that he wants the cure not only for Elena but also for himself, Rebekah is touched. She admits that even though Xander betrayed her, she loved him still. She even went to the trouble of burying him at the church where she and Xander were to be married. As soon as the words escape her lips, she realizes she's been played. Stefan wanted to know Xander's final resting place because she buried him with his cure map-key/sword. Klaus appears from the shadows, dagger and White Oak ash in hand. Rebekah gets in a final dig at Klaus about never being able to love, then he daggers her. Stefan, the Judas, hangs his head. Klaus orders him to tell no one of the cure. Just stash Becky's body somewhere it won't be found, compel Jeremy to forget all he's learned, and keep his yapper shut. The hybrids will babysit Connor while Klaus flies off to Italy to fetch the sword.
Damon sees Elena to her front porch -- their sort of special spot. She apologizes for earlier. She thinks he's right about what a vampire should be, but she hates that feeling. She doesn't want to be... Damon finishes for her. "You don't want to be like me." Stefan opens the Gilbert Gables door and saves Elena from any more confessions. He lies that there's no more news about the hunter, and Damon takes his leave.
Elena tells Stefan that while she learned how to feed without killing, she hates it. It might get easier, but she doesn't want it to. She feels like she's becoming someone she doesn't want to be. I am really disappointed in some of this, which I'll hit in the full recap, because while ultimately I have no problem with Elena choosing not to enjoy vampirism, I have huge problems with her making that choice in the span of mere minutes. I have no desire to watch her continue to play some sad sack victim. It's making her intolerable rather than relatable. My 13 year old insists I add that book Elena, in both her human and vampire forms, is far more enjoyable.
By episode's end, Connor has killed one of his guards and escaped. As promised, his tattoo map expands. We cut back to the college, where he visits the professor, who says, "Shouldn't you be in Mystic Falls, killing vampires?" Connor glowers at him. "Why the hell did you send me there?" Grr argh.
I'll be back with the whole story in the full recap. In the meantime, please grade the episode at the top of the page and then come on over to the forum, where we're taking up a Wet Wipe collection for Elena.
Welcome back, everyone. I hope those of you who were hit by Sandy are doing better than you were this time last week. I have friends who are still without power (and some without power and water), but they're safe and sound, and made of much tougher stuff than I am. While the Seaboard is just starting to fight its way back, there is some immediate good news. Our long national nightmare is over. Okay, if you think President Obama is our long national nightmare, you might not see it that way. I'm looking at it from a non-partisan point of view though, so I'm speaking strictly of the election itself.
This is sad, morbid, really, but I won't let that stop me. Years ago (I think I was 19), my dad's twin was dying. We were at the hospital with him. He had a treatment, and then, because of the cancer (and the "cure") he was really out of it. We had a baseball game on the TV. When it ended, my uncle whipped off his oxygen mask and said, "Are we done? Is it over? Are we done?" That's exactly how I feel about this election. I mentioned this the other day, on Facebook, and Demian said I should have saved my anecdote for something better than Facebook. I reminded him I'm not above plagiarizing myself, and now I've proven it (and will do so more than once in this recap). So there you go. It's over, America. It's over. And if it's not. If I'm hallucinating, please just hush up and let me keep doing so. Oh my word. I just realized this is turning into an episode of The Recapper Diaries, so I'll just shut up and get to the show. You ready? Okay!
1110 A.D. A witch -- of African ancestry, of course -- gathers five hunky young lads in the woods, possibly to audition them for the first ever Chippendales show. They have capes, and make me want to watch Thor. The witch does a little hokey. She does a little pokey. She adds a dash of hocus, and pinch of pocus. Presto-chango, Buffy's mystical ancestors now have five proper heavily-tattooed potential (and oh yes, this episode uses that word) suitors. If only there'd been the internet dating back then (which I'm not completely discounting, since according to The Vampire Diaries, there were Vikings and horses in Virginia, even earlier), we might have created a super race of monster hunters, but I digress. Yes, most of that was plagiarized from the recaplet, but that's only because I regularly screw myself over when writing the recaplets. I should have exercised some restraint and saved that for this recap, so think of his as a successful recovery mission, and please follow me to a fresh, original paragraph, starting at...