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The Vampire Diaries – S7E5 – Live Through This

Previously on The Vampire Diaries, ‘I Carry Your Heart With Me’ 

Three years from now

Bonnie is in a group therapy session, in some sort of mental health or rehabilitation center. She’s trying to move on from a mistake she made in the past. One decision that caused her to lose someone she loves. When she returns to her room after the session, Enzo is waiting there. He tells her it’s not safe and she can’t hide out much longer. Then they kiss, and pretty passionately too. What. The. Fuck.  

I have no idea what to say about that last part other than I don’t like it, not one bit. What I do know is Kat Graham is phenomenal. She knocked that scene out of the park; that one tear falling down her cheek was perfection. I love the mystery that’s continually building from these flash-forwards. What was Bonnie’s mistake? Is it something we’ve already seen, or something still to come? Is it possible that’s not really Bonnie? Could the reveal about The Phoenix Stone’s true nature be foreshadowing that someone else is in Bonnie’s body? I know it’s highly unlikely because of the whole Elena-Bonnie connection, so I’m probably just in denial.

Images: The CW

Images: The CW

Just in case I opened up Pandora’s rock

Present-day Bonnie needs to know more about The Phoenix Stone and the magic she used to wield it. Oscar’s freak out in Myrtle Beach definitely means he knows something about it, so she heads to the Salvatore house for answers. Ric isn’t worried about the ins and outs of the stone since he has his wife back now, but he should be. Jo doesn’t remember anything: not Ric, not what a TV is, or the fact that she’s a vegetarian. Ric stays optimistic, especially when Jo quickly assesses a cut on his hand and offers to bandage him up. No doubt he sees this as a fragment of her medical knowledge coming through. This ended up being a very well played misdirect.

Oscar’s memories haven’t returned either and he has no recollection of who his “family” is. Enzo agrees to stay with him, while Lily and the others go look for Julian. When Bonnie shows up Oscar remembers her, not from Myrtle Beach but from helping him get out of the “dark room in the basement.” Which turns out to be The Phoenix Stone.

[pullquote align=”right” cite=”” link=”” color=”#4a7097″ class=”” size=””]“One stupid decision can turn your life into something that you don’t recognize, like it belongs to someone else.” – Bonnie[/pullquote]

No-hanky-panky zone

The confident Caroline we know and love is back. She encourages Stefan to join Damon in tracking down Valerie, so the two of them can “clear away all the 19th-century drama.” The Salvatore brothers’ (short) interrogation leads to them taking a road trip with the heretic to find Julian. It’s not exactly clear why they do so however. Valerie offers no real substantial reasons for wanting Julian dead; the fact that he’s committed a massacre(s) means nothing when both Damon and Stefan have done the same. As an audience, we could assume that Stefan would want revenge if he knew what Julian did to Valerie, but his character doesn’t have that information. The motivation for their teamwork is shaky at best.

Still, their time together does allow for some very intriguing plot developments about The Phoenix Stone. It’s not an all-purpose resurrection tool; it’s much more specific than that. The stone traps vampire souls inside of it until they can be returned to their body. So, for a resurrection to actually take place, the soul of the person being raised from the dead would have to be inside that stone in the first place. Meaning the people walking around in Jo and Oscar’s bodies’ definitely aren’t Jo and Oscar. Julian’s soul, on the other hand, is waiting inside the stone.

Damon, Valerie, Stefan

Rocks-R-Us

Damon gives Bonnie a heads up about The Phoenix Stone, in the hopes that she’ll do the dirty work of telling Ric. Of course Bonnie agrees, but first she has to get out of the Salvatore house before whoever’s in Oscar’s body, realizes the heretic powers they have. So, any powers that a person had stay with their body and do not leave with their soul, right? Does this mean that even though Jo now has a vampire soul inside of her, she won’t actually be a vampire? Let’s keep an eye on this.

Enzo stalls Bonnie’s escape with questions about the stone and in the meantime, fake Oscar discovers his abilities. As she’s fleeing she drops the stone, which gives Enzo the opportunity to claim it. Bonnie manages to make it out unscathed but the same can’t be said for fake Oscar; Enzo distracts him with the stone and stakes him from behind.

I must admit that if Bonnie and Enzo are to become an item, I appreciate the way this development is being handled, so far. The unusual amount of time they spend together in this episode doesn’t feel forced and their banter, while nowhere near what Bonnie and Damon can pull off, was pretty decent.

He made her vindictive and cruel

Valerie is thisclose to burning Julian’s body when Nora and Mary Louise show up, followed closely behind by Lily and Beau. Lucky for them, Oscar had taken Julian’s ring so they were able to perform a locator spell. Damon wants to know why his mother needs Julian back so badly and her response is something unexpected. He’s the love of her life, the one she didn’t think she deserved, and the man she thought she could change for. Well, that sounds familiar.

This hits way too close to home for Damon causing him to back off for a moment, until Valerie reveals a secret. Guess who gave Kai the idea for Elena’s sleeping curse? It was Lily, of course. Enraged, Damon attacks her, but Beau quickly retaliates and sends Valerie, Damon, and Stefan sailing into the air, as he blows up all the caskets.

For some reason, Stefan is super concerned about Valerie’s wellbeing when he regains consciousness after the blast. He rushes to her side and helps pick out all of the tiny wooden spikes she was impaled with. She tells him the truth about what Julian did to their unborn baby and Stefan is crushed. Later, he tells her that he would have wanted the baby and then he doesn’t fill Caroline in on any of the news. This looks like the very beginning of the end for Steroline, and it’s just a hint of why Caroline’s future fiancé is so not Stefan.

If I’m not Jo, who am I?

Ric is out looking for Jo – she ran off with a gun after feeling overwhelmed by her memory confusion – when Bonnie calls to tell him the truth about her. Understandably, he doesn’t want to believe it at first but when he finds her, it’s clear she’s not his wife. He promises to stick by her side and help her figure out who she really is, which is really touching.

It would be impossible not to feel bad for Ric in this situation; all that trouble to get Jo back and then it’s not even her. What’s impressive is that The Vampire Diaries manages to make new Jo’s story equally as heartbreaking. We don’t know who the new Jo is, yet, but her sense of loss and confusion was truly palpable. Perhaps she’s easily relatable because she still looks like old Jo. Either way I have a good feeling about her and Ric moving forward. 

Final Thoughts

  • I guess those future twins of Ric’s might not be Jo’s. It makes sense that the babies would have been lost when she originally died, but since almost anything supernatural goes in this show, I didn’t think it was that implausible.
  • Thank goodness Lily chose Julian over Enzo so that stupid plot line can be done with.
  • When Julian was being resurrected, did you notice the x-scar on his chest? I have a theory that anyone who’s had their soul trapped inside The Phoenix Stone is sporting one of these. Look out, Stefan!
  • Damon has a pretty twisted revenge plan in mind for his mother, and Bonnie is totally on board. I should probably stop getting my hopes up but I’m hoping this means they’ll start getting more screen time together. C’mon, The Vampire Diaries, throw us Bamon fans a bone already!
The Vampire Diaries S7E5
  • 8/10
    Plot - 8/10
  • 9/10
    Dialogue - 9/10
  • 8.5/10
    Performances - 8.5/10
  • 7/10
    Bamon Moments - 7/10
8.1/10

Summary

As all of the present-day plot threads start to interweave, the future continues to become increasingly more mysterious. What binds it all together is The Phoenix Stone, and the twist about its true purpose was awesome. Though it’s unfortunate that we won’t be getting the real Jo back, I loved the way this development brought so many details into focus. Those visions Bonnie was having were probably of the souls trapped inside the stone. Jo and Oscar were so hungry when they awoke because they are actually vampires who haven’t fed in decades.

The connection between Valerie and Stefan still feels very forced overall but at least, with them meeting face-to-face, it’s no longer based only in flashbacks. I only see trouble on the horizon for him and Caroline though. While Stefan claims that he only wanted the truth from Valerie, he sure acted like someone who was still heartbroken over the loss of his first love. Now that he knows Valerie never meant to hurt him and that they could have had a baby together, a love triangle is surely about to form.

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About Jasmin George (185 Articles)
An avid reader of TV Guide in her youth, Jasmin has been a fan of all things television since she can remember. She’s very passionate about story, especially the kinds that use cameras and actors to convey them. When she doesn’t have her eyes glued to the tube, you can find her listening to podcasts or reading reviews about, well, TV. Yeah, Jasmin might have a slight addiction but she’s perfectly happy to coexist with it.
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