Tonight’s episode of The Vampire Diaries brought the friendship between Caroline and Stefan back into the forefront, but it also brought light to some breaks the foundation of Caroline’s relationship with Tyler. Here’s your Friday dose of an episode recap – Caroline Forbes style.

the caroline forbes focus

Last week, Caroline and Elena were the focus of my recap because of the connection that they made when Caroline urged Elena to compel April on her own. I’m still not over how impactful that was. Just as I had hoped, this week’s episode revisited Caroline’s connection with Stefan in a wonderful way, and I could not be more excited about it.

In Caroline’s first scene, we see her sitting on a table with Stefan outside of Mystic Falls High School, where they’re both listening to Elena rant about her growing rage for Rebekah. Caroline and Stefan are like the cool parental figures to a super bratty, irrational, and hormonal Elena and it’s hilarious.

Caroline does her best to remain positive, as always, but Elena only begins to calm down at Stefan’s idea of skipping out on school. Candice Accola looks gorgeous here. The lighting in this scene is kind of magical.

Caroline: “Does she seem a little off balance to you?”
Stefan: “Yeah, she’s channeling all her emotions into rage. It makes her feel like she has purpose. I used to do that, too, when I was… you know…”
Caroline: “Ripper you?”
Stefan: “Yeah. She needs to come to terms with it, confront it, let it in before she can let it go.”
Caroline: “You’re good at this, you know that? You saved my vampire life, now you’re saving hers. You should write a book. Go on The View.”
Stefan: “Hm.”

I can’t breathe! Send aid!! Nothing beats Caroline and Stefan finishing each other’s sentences, as if they’ve known each other since kindergarten. I love that Caroline manages to thrown in a pop culture reference around Stefan, who would probably normally care less, but with her it’s different. If Matt and Caroline don’t end up together at the end of this show, I want her to end up with Stefan. Not only do they have chemistry, but they’re amazing as close friends. Plus, in all of their scenes, they’re basically just talking and smiling at each other and acting on the same impulses and… doing stuff that might seem kind of boring to some people, but I have a thing for that. I’m really fond them. I’m sorry. Moving on…

At one point or another we’re introduced to Hayley, who appears to have strong ties with a certain Lockwood werewolf. I love Phoebe Tonkin and I had been excited to hear that she’d be on the show, but I was also preemptively worried about the possibility of her character becoming an enemy of Caroline’s because of Tyler and petty jealousy (see: Rebekah). As it turns out, those worries weren’t completely out of line.

We’re led to believe now that while Hayley helped Tyler during his absence from Mystic Falls, they got together, or at least formed an intense bond that Tyler didn’t deny when Klaus berated him. So, Tyler cheated on Caroline while he was away? And he’s been deceptive about it since he got back? We’ll have to wait until next week (or longer – probably longer) to get the full story. However, even if nothing physical happened between Tyler and Hayley, he hid her from Caroline in this episode for a reason. That alone wasn’t very cool, sir.

Not only has Tyler’s good guy vibe never settled right with me, but I also feel that the Caroline/Tyler romance has run its course and jogged halfway through a second marathon. I clearly love Caroline, but I’d rather see her character suffer through a breakup than continue with this relationship.

It’s also entertaining to look at this from Klaus’ perspective. He’s hit the jackpot because, in his eyes, Tyler is what stands in between him and a potential relationship with Caroline. I don’t want them to get together, but I do enjoy Klaus’ inability to hide his love for her. Plus, his “…and Caroline has no idea” line was perfect.

In Caroline’s last scene, she bonds with Stefan again and everything is beautiful. The roles have now reversed to a certain degree: Stefan is unable to resist is Ripper urges as he tries to help Elena embrace her vampirism, and he’s turning to Caroline to help him.

Stefan: “I just thought… you’re so good at it. At being a vampire.”
Caroline: “Because of you, Stefan. I’m good at it because of you. Come to me, whenever you want. I won’t let you lose control.”

One of these days, Caroline is going to have to deal with her inner Ripper. I feel that it will be sooner rather than later, and that this will turn out to be a whole lot of foreshadowing. For now, I’ll continue to enjoy her as the confident, expectedly insecure, controlling, loving, and devoted character that she currently is.

I’m loving these plot developments, loving these characters, and loving this season. More, please!

Make sure to tune into The Vampire Diaries every Thursday on The CW at 8pm EST/7pm central! Then, check back to Small Screen Scoop the next day for a weekly Caroline Forbes Focus recap.

Written by Maddie Coe. Visit her Candice Accola Fansite for the latest details about the phenomenal actress.