We’ve come to expect a certain level of WTF-ness from The Vampire Diaries, which it so reliably delivers. So even though we knew going in that the next few episodes would be very mythology-heavy, it was a little startling to realize there would not be a major OMG moment in season 4, episode 10, “After School Special.” A guy did come back from the dead, but that seems to happen like every other week in Mystic Falls. Maybe we’re just getting greedy — or at least I am — because we did get a ton of Rebekah being a super badass and a cute tribute to The Breakfast Club. Nothing to complain about, really.
Starting from the beginning: It’s been more than a year since I last recapped an episode of TVD. How are we feeling about this whole opening montage thing? It’s a little cheesy, but in a fun, nostalgic way. Plus, it’s incredibly helpful when it’s been a month since the last new episode. It’s no diary-writing voiceover (and that’s a good thing), so I vote win.
Bonnie’s dad has come back to town to become the newest Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher mayor. Why was he dumb enough to say yes after six people before him declined the job? We didn’t find out this week, but we do know he’s in on the supernatural conspiracy with Sheriff Forbes.
Damon, Matt, and Jeremy spent their episode being sweaty and fighting each other in an attempt to buff Jeremy up before he slaughters more vampires (to reveal more of his hunter’s mark). Tank top karate Jeremy is definitely the best iteration of Elena’s lil bro so far. And Matt was in a tank top too, so I’m assuming they started a club where they do bicep curls together and eat pizza, like the Ninja Turtles but at a lake house instead of a sewer. No sleeves allowed.
The main story this week revolved around newly un-daggered Rebekah, who rounded up Elena, Stefan, Tyler, Caroline, and Creepy Professor Shane and compelled them to hang out in the library so she could figure out what the heck was going on and how to get to the vampirism cure, and also to torture them because this is like the millionth time she’s been daggered. Girlfriend still hasn’t been to a dance. How will she ever learn that they’re really awkward occasions with lame DJs that eventually devolve into groups of girls crying in the bathroom for no reason? Kol came back to help her, and she compelled April to be her lapdog, telling her the truth about all the town’s supernatural goings-on. How does Matt go seasons without finding out and this bitch knows the truth after a few episodes? This has been your gentle reminder that April is still a thing. For now.
Rebekah didn’t realize that Elena and Stefan broke up, but she was delighted to find out and even more delighted to discover that Elena had gotten together with Damon afterwards. “My brother slept with Elena. Kind of puts a damper on things,” said pouty Stefan. Rebekah also compelled Elena to confess why she slept with Damon. Turns out, she loves him! And she thinks Stefan’s boring. Way harsh, Tai.
Oh! Before everyone was corralled into the library, Shane gave Bonnie a gift. “It’s beautiful,” she gushed. “It’s human bone!” he replied, creepily, because he is creepy and that is a very creepy gift to give someone!
Since Rebekah couldn’t compel Shane, she tortured some information out of him. “Silas will raise the dead. He will bring back every last soul who died on his behalf,” said Creepy Shane, creepily. Then he died, but Bonnie had accidentally tied him to April in some sort of protective spell (she almost died too — we were so close), so he came back to life, though it is unclear how. Vampire blood? Crazy ring? Evil voodoo magic?
In the end, just before releasing everyone, Rebekah offered to erase all of Stefan’s memories of Elena, and he accepted the offer without much hesitation. But since Rebekah was just messing with him, she totally didn’t do it. But Stefan did call her later and offer to team up so they can search for the cure together. Elena called Damon, who’d teamed up with Klaus to search for the cure, to tell him that she loved him. He seemed excited, but obviously he’s still wary of everything now that he knows about the sire bond.
What did you think of the episode? Too much exposition and not enough action? Or a perfectly fine balance of action and explanation and I should stop being so greedy and expecting glorious mass murder set to gorgeous Christmas music in every episode?
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[PHOTO CREDIT: Bob Mahoney/The CW]