Friday’s episode of The Vampire Diaries pummeled us with two major breakups, and I’m honestly not sure which split was more depressing.
The first breakup — the more obviously heartbreaking one, shall we say — was between Valerie and Stefan, freshly reunited with his own body after spending nearly two full episodes waltzing about as that Joseph Morgan look-alike. Returning Stefan’s soul nearly cost Valerie her life, and during a post-spell chat set to Ruelle’s devastating “I Get to Love You,” she acknowledged that her brooding boyfriend was more concerned with the guilt over her potential death than the actual death itself.
Because paraphrasing Valerie’s big goodbye speech couldn’t possibly do it justice, here it is in full:
You don’t love me the way I love you, and the guilt of that sacrifice would eat you alive. The truth is, I’ve never loved anyone the way I love you, but that’s not true for you. And now, by some miracle, you get the chance to go back and make things right with Caroline. I know you never meant to hurt me; I even know you loved me in your own way. Maybe, if things had been different, if the world had been kinder to us, I could have been the love of your life, too.
To be perfectly honest, I never put too much stock in the Valerie/Stefan relationship, only because it always felt like a means to an end — but damn it, if her speech didn’t have me all kinds of emotional. I guess it’s true what Britney Spears sang on one of the many forgotten tracks from 2013’s Britney Jean: “You never know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone.” (She was the first person to coin that phrase, right? … OK, I thought so.)
Elsewhere this week…
THE BROMANCE IS OVER | The other breakup, devastating for an entirely different set of reasons, was between (former?) BFFs Damon and Alaric. “Let’s get back to the way things were,” Damon pleaded once the dust had settled. But Alaric, now determined to maintain his danger-free future with Caroline and the twins, simply replied, “No offense, but I don’t want things to get back to the way they were.” Yeah, that one hurt. And if you think about how much #Dalaric has been through during the past seven seasons — need I remind you of the “I miss you too, buddy” moment at Ric’s grave in Season 4?! — this is kind of huge. (Also, what’s this about Caroline and Alaric having “just a few friends” at their wedding? I know the last one didn’t go too well for Alaric, but without an elaborate ceremony, how are we going to get Stefan’s dramatic objection?)
CHECKING OUT | For this week’s recap, I’ve decided to pull a Vanessa Williams and save the best for last. Bonnie’s current storyline is, without question, the most interesting thing happening on TVD right now; my only complaint is that we didn’t get to spend more time with her in rehab. She may have faked her addiction, but those biting words about Damon during group therapy (“How could I have fallen into such a dark place over someone who cares so little about me?”) were all too real. Is it any wonder why she slammed the door in his face at the end of the hour?
As for Bonnie’s relationship with Enzo — you know, the guy who’s “sorry” for spending three years poisoning her — I’m not quite as supportive as I once was. In fact, now that we have all the facts, Damon’s reaction to their coupling (“Someone kidnapped Bonnie Bennett and brainwashed her into a relationship with Enzo?”) felt all the more appropriate, not that Damon has been treating her any better. Heck, am I the only one who thinks she’s better off without either of these jokers?
Your thoughts on this week’s episode? Which breakup bummed you out more? Any theories about what’s in the Armory’s vault? Drop ’em all in a comment below.