for an episode of The Vampire Diaries that we loved, there was a lot of things about it that made us roll our eyes. Excuse us while we just leave out some important clues on the kitchen table for you to find…

The Vampire Diaries Review ‘The Ties that Bind’

How about that Meredith?

Meredith Fell is a very interesting character. In the book, Elena knows her – but obviously not in the show. Meanwhile, she’s kind of winning me over by being a totally brave, strong, smart person. She took Damon out, is using blood to heal people, and Alaric wasn’t fooling her in the way he healed so fast. She might turn out to be kind of evil in the end, but for now I’m on her side.

Alaric: When did you even see her?
Damon: When I went to the hospital to accuse her of killing her ex-boyfriend. By the way, sensitive topics.

Worst timing ever.

This is probably only the second time I’ve been watching an episode of The Vampire Diaries and briefly wondered if I was hearing the script from a really bad fanfic. As much as I love romance and a good love triangle, the placement of when it’s brought up is paramount to how serious the fans can take it.

On its own, a scene where Elena is helping Stefan and then decides to share with him that she’s kissed Damon (notice her phrasing to Bonnie vs her phrasing to Stefan – Bonnie was told Damon kissed her, Stefan is told that she kissed him) is a great catalyst for drama. Selfishly, Elena is a teenage girl here, who just wants to see that her ex-boyfriend is jealous. She’s acting innocent while trying to rub salt in his wound, and punishing him for how he’s been treating her. It’s ripe for drama! But when you place that scene in the middle of several other storylines going on which involve much higher stakes (like, hello, death) it suddenly makes Elena seem like a really selfish  character (listen, I know she’s not!)

While this was going on, the had one dude who was compelled to kill himself, Bonnie was kidnapped and dealing with a pretty horrible mother – and they knew all of that was going on. What they didn’t know about, but was still playing in the mix for us, was that Caroline’s Dad had just been mauled enough to possibly end up dead. So, in the middle of all of that, we’re supposed to care that Elena is trying to get a reaction from Stefan about a kiss? I would have loved this scene in any other episode, or even if it had come earlier on. I’m so furious with the writers for doing it here. Ugh!

Not such a great Mom, that Abby.

I’m pretty sure we weren’t supposed to come out of this episode liking Bonnie’s Mom all that much. Sure, in the end she did what she could to try and help Bonnie and her friends, but her adopted son (not officially adopted, but roll with it) was more important to her.

What’s more, who is buying her excuse that she had to leave her daughter, husband, and entire life? The girls didn’t even drive that far, so she hadn’t been that far away from Bonnie this whole time.

And, I’m sorry, shock at hearing Grams is dead? Did she think she would live forever? Of course Grams was going to eventually die, and how does Abby think she’s going to know? Her Mom really frustrates me, and Bonnie deserves better.

A quick turnaround.

I loved the way Caroline’s Dad was written earlier in season 3. He wasn’t likeable. He was willing to torture his daughter to “fix” her. Even when she tried to make amends, he didn’t  offer up a happy ending and a hug. And for good drama, you need those kinds of characters. But this episode delivered Caroline’s Dad back to us like he’d had a lobotomy. I buy that he may have changed his mind over time, but to come back like he did seemed to skip over a lot. Boom, he was back! And he was gonna fix Tyler! But, I will admit I like the idea of him being the one who’s going to help. I just want him to earn our trust back. In the meantime, it sucks for Tyler that he’s gonna keep breaking all of his bones until it no longer hurts.

The good stuff.

I didn’t hate this entire episode, far from that. I thought it was full of a lot of great twists, especially in the end when we saw Elijah was awake. (Although I could have sworn it was gonna be Rebecca.)

Stefan noting that Elena has become stronger as a person was good, as was her standing up to Stefan (albeit a bit immaturely – she should have just told him he was not coming instead of leaving out the clues for him) and trying to support Bonnie.

No matter how scary Damon and Stefan can seem, whenever Klaus is around he manages to one-up them. (Example: in the house with the witches.) This makes Klaus a formidable enemy.

Damon: Insulting a bunch of dead witches? Not smart.

Stefan shows feeeeeelings.

We got to see that Stefan does care about Elena, and is jealous that his brother kissed her. Which is good in the sense that it lets Stefan admit he’s not totally evil, and he still has feelings.

Klaus: Ah, right. Crazy Stefan. How’s that working out for you? Any friends left?

Delena romance will blossom.

Now that Elena has admitted the kiss to Stefan, and Bonnie is also in-the-know, it means there’s a very good possibility that Damon and Elena will put a green light to future smoochies. Yay to that.

That is my official prediction.

Bonnie: What’s going on with you two?
Damon: We kissed. Now it’s weird.