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The Vampire Diaries – S8E6 – Detoured on Some Random Backwoods Path to Hell

Previously on The Vampire Diaries, “Coming Home Was a Mistake”

The Vampire Diaries – S8E6 – “Detoured on Some Random Backwoods Path to Hell” | Starring: Kat Graham, Ian Somerhalder, Paul Wesley, Candice King, Matthew Davis, Michael Malarkey, Zach Roerig | Directed by: Paul Wesley

Images: The CW

Images: The CW

The search for Josie and Lizzie is on, and Caroline and Ric will do anything to get them back, even if that means killing one of their gang. Stefan, who is forced to stay behind, works with Matt, Bonnie, and Enzo to find leads on where Seline may have taken the kids. While attacking Enzo’s mind, Sybil lets the details of her whereabouts slip. Stefan, trying to save Enzo from Sybil’s mind torture, overhears the information and uses it to get Caroline and Ric one step ahead of the Sirens. Every time they get close however, Sybil, Seline, and Damon have already fled with the twins.

Seline’s ultimate plan was to offer the twins as a sacrifice to Cade, thereby freeing her and Sybil from his command. Damon and Sybil have other ideas, though. Instead of waiting 10 years for Josie and Lizzie to reach an age where they’d actually be useful to Cade, Damon wants to offer himself and Stefan in their place. It makes little to no sense for Damon to suggest this, but he does and it works. The twins are safe, but Caroline and Stefan are over (again,) Ric’s taking those kids far, far away, and Sybil still has a side deal with Cade that’s yet to be revealed.

Oh, and Ric “killed” Damon. Which was absurd and totally bogus – more on that later.

The Good

Bonnie and Enzo. I mean, they were basically pawns for plot movement in this episode, but their interactions continue to be TVD’s saving grace. Enzo’s dialogue about never giving up on true love and being rewarded when he found it with Bonnie could have easily come off as sickly sweet, but it works really beautifully here. Partly because the chemistry between Kat Graham and Michael Malarkey is so darn palpable, but also because after everything Bonnie and Enzo have been through, a grand declaration of love feels very fitting. Graham nailed the scene where Enzo wakes up; she sold the feeling of surprise mingled with gratitude and relief.

Caroline and Ric, both together and solo. While it was a little far-fetched for Seline to answer his phone call, Ric’s speech to her about the lengths he’ll go to find and save his children was pretty intense. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen Ric at this level of pissed off, and Matt Davis sold every threatening second of it. Feeling equally enraged, Caroline kicked her Mama Bear Mode into high gear. She definitely took things too far when giving her engagement ring back to Stefan, but her bold honesty about Damon getting slaughtered should he get in her way, is a badass, assertive side to Caroline I wish we’d see more often.

Finally, Ric’s cold-hearted truth about the twins being his and Jo’s was both warranted in the heat of the moment and surprisingly impactful, and not a bit overplayed. This dialogue felt more authentic than anything we’ve heard in quite some time on this show. Later, when Ric apologizes, Caroline’s reaction continues the streak of authenticity. Despite being given no choice, Caroline happily carried those babies in her belly, and she loves them more than anything now. But, she’s also smart enough to realize Ric is on to something in wanting to take them far away from this life.

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The Bad

Stefan saving the day, again – seriously, the sidelining on this show knows no bounds. In order for this story to end the way TVD needed it to, Stefan had to step in and take the deal with Damon. Unfortunately, it meant kicking the twins’ own parents to the curb. The episode spent so much time building Ric and Caroline’s panic and rage, which was great, only to squander away any satisfying payoff by having Stefan don his Hero Hair once more. Seeing as it’s still early in the season, I guess an epic battle between the Sirens and Cade, and our gang just wasn’t on the horizon just yet.

The Siren storyline in general is just not cutting it for a final season arc. Though they’re certainly no worse than The Heretics, Rayna, or The Armory, Seline and Sybil are nowhere near the level of menacing villainy that Kai, the Mikaelson family, or Katherine once offered TVD. Six episodes in and the Sirens’ purpose in this show remains unclear. Damon’s turn to the dark side just isn’t interesting enough to leave any lasting impact. The threat to the twins never felt all that dire. Stefan was already destined for Hell, so his deal with the Devil merely sped up the inevitable. The Sirens will be nothing more than a blip on the history of TVD, and for them to be a big part of the final run of episodes is disappointing. Right now, there’s a ton of pressure on Cade to deliver, but I’m not getting my hopes up. 

Caroline and Stefan’s on and off again mess of a “relationship.” I think the intention here, is that by ripping these two apart yet again, the audience should want them back together even more. Along the same lines as absence making the heart grow fonder, we’re meant to become more and more invested in this relationship, each time they’re torn apart. Unfortunately, it has quite the opposite effect. Caroline and Stefan haven’t been interesting to me since we discovered Caroline and Ric were an item last season. But, if I was still a Steroline fan, I’d be pissed about the constant manipulation this show has put me through.

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The Most Obvious & Pointless (and damn near insulting) Fake Out, Ever.

TVD, I’m calling your bullshit; I’m calling your shenanigans; I’m calling your bluff. There is no way Damon is actually dead. Killing main characters is just not something you guys do – unless you’re given no other option, like when Nina Dobrev decided to leave the show. Even when you guys do kill a character they usually come back, and that’s absolutely what’s going to happen here. Honestly, I almost couldn’t care less if Damon died or not. His character’s motivations have been nonsensical for a long while now, and it’s starting to feel like he’s only around so you guys can cash in on an epic reunion between him and Elena, which, yawn. In fact, if Damon does die (he won’t) I would probably have a slightly renewed sense of confidence in and respect for your show. It would prove you are willing to let characters deal with the consequences of their actions – something Damon never seems truly subject to, since he’s forgiven and welcomed back to the inner circle time and again. It’s very obvious however, that Damon will be just fine. He just made a deal with the literal Devil, and I’m sure Cade has the power to step in and reverse whatever damage Ric caused. So I’d say nice try, TVD, but I’d be lying.

Final Thoughts

  • This week’s title is a Caroline quote, from season 1 episode 17. Caroline is forced to take a detour while driving during a storm, leading her to stumble upon Vicki Donovan’s dead body.
  • It was nice to have a break from the voice-over journal entries to Elena. She’s probably not even going to read them all – would that be your first order of business after waking from a 70-or-so-year coma? The gang should save their ink.
  • How did Seline expect to stay hidden for another 10 years, when she was almost caught twice in less than one day? If she hadn’t blown her cover as the nanny, she could have been earning the twins’ trust for at least another 3 years, while not worrying about hiding or being on the run – plus, it’s a steady paycheck so that seems like a no brainer!
  • These characters need to stop using terms like, “until this is all over” or, “when this is all over.” We’ve been watching them live through hell, sometimes literally, for nearly a decade; when are they going to realize that the lives of vampires and supernatural beings are always going to be chaotic?
  • While daydreaming about Bonnie and Enzo living happily ever after, I had a thought. What would happen to Elena if Bonnie became a vampire? You technically have to die to start the transition, so would that be enough to sever their link? Now, Bonnie has never shown interest in becoming undead, but maybe she’ll change her mind after a few more years with Enzo.
The Vampire Diaries S8E6 = 7.7/10
  • 6.5/10
    Plot - 6.5/10
  • 8.5/10
    Dialogue - 8.5/10
  • 8/10
    Performances - 8/10
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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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