After Friday night’s (Jan. 13) winter premiere, there are only 7 more episodes left before “The Vampire Diaries” ends forever. The CW is using this final run to answer some of the deeper philosophical questions that have been weighing on audiences’ minds for years. The episode, “We Have History Together,” a title that pays tribute to a line the show’s co-creator Kevin Williamson wrote in the series’ pilot many moons ago, seriously got us thinking from a much larger, metaphysical point of view.
Since Day 1 in the series premiere, viewers were trained to believe that Stefan (Paul Wesley) was the the good Salvatore brother. He was the one whom kept Damon (Ian Somerhalder) in check. But as their history unfolded, we were then presented with a chicken-or-the-egg kind of ultimatum: Because Stefan is responsible for turning Damon into a vampire, is he fundamentally responsible for Damon’s reign of terror? Or was Damon always evil, and Stefan just allowed him the opportunity for his inevitable darker tendencies to shine through?
According to Cade (Wole Parks) such differences are trivial. He believes merely thinking about doing awful things is as punishable as acting on them. While he previously had Sybil (Nathalie Kelley) and Seline (Kristen Gutoskie) only trap souls of those who actually committed acts of savagery, with the Salvatore brothers, he’s instructed them to capture those who may one day act upon their inner turmoiled thoughts. There’s obviously a huge difference between the two, and if every person who thought about doing bad things were to be killed, there’d be no people left on this planet.
Regardless, Cade is forcing the Salvatore brothers to act as moral terrorists and Stefan is struggling to stay afloat, and for Caroline’s (Candice King’s) sake, that’s the nicest way of putting it. It’s obvious Stefan is currently relishing life without his humanity switch on. Maybe because he doesn’t have an artifact of love that reminds him of what’s he can look forward to after his year of service is up like Damon, but it’s only three weeks into their service, and Stefan is already sucking the blood from any innocent strangers, and ripping their heads off.
Most vampires do go to a very dark place when his or her humanity is shut off off, but this isn’t Stefan’s first time at the no emotions rodeo. Cade warned the Salvatores that after a year with him, neither of them may want to return to their happy normal lives, and with Stefan already in full ripper mode, it’s scary to think how far gone he will be in 11 months.
Harkening back to the same question Sybil posed to Stefan earlier this season, watching Damon be the anchor for his baby brother, to be the one to resist temptation – is Damon acting so virtuously because one of them had to take the reigns and Stefan has obviously already jumped ship? Or are these ethical actions Damon’s natural tendency? Is Stefan now living in his truth, merely tapping into the uninhibited impulses that were always lurking just beneath the surface?
Our wheels are spinning dissecting all these catch-22s, and we applaud “The Vampire Diaries” for not going quietly into the good night. These are all valid question, worthy of speculation, and for which we may never have concrete answers. But in the meantime, it’s killer entertainment watching these beautiful people of The CW play out these scenarios, and we can’t wait to see
Nina Dobrev return as Elena to address all of our concerns how everything ends up.
Fun closing note: Even though Enzo (Michael Malarkey) didn’t appear in this episode, the song that played at the end is an original track from the actor himself, entitled “Scars.”
“The Vampire Diaries” airs on Friday nights at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.