This review contains spoilers.
3.7 Ghost World
Keeping with the theme of first season throwbacks for The Vampire Diaries, a founding families celebration drives this week’s episode, and there’s a lot of familiar faces wondering around Mystic Falls. We’ve already met Anna, and the climax of last week revealed that Mason Lockwood was also hanging in the land of the living. This week is about what to do with the undead members of the gang, while figuring out how to move on themselves.
Suffice to say, Damon gets some divine payback at the start of the episode, courtesy of the older Lockwood brother, and wakes up with a poker through his chest. It’s comforting to hear that he’s figured it out pretty quickly, and it’s understandable that he wants the ghost problem sorted out sooner rather than later.
There’s actually so many dead friends and relatives hanging around that almost the whole cast get involved in operation Casper, except notably, Matt and Tyler.
As this is all Bonnie’s fault, she’s front and centre of the action this week. Despite the dubious evidence for vampires having ghosts, it’s also a chance to meet some old friends. Mason, for example, was a firm fan favourite during his short time on the show, and his death was one of the show’s more ruthless killings. Seeing him back reminds us how temporary he really was, though, and there’s no pressing need for him to stick around apart from a discovery he makes with Damon. He’s on a mission to help Tyler’s new Hybrid status, and the pair make a very interesting discovery.
One character we never got to see enough of was Stefan’s friend, Lexi, who the audience have heard much more about than seen first-hand. At last we get to see her control over Stefan in action, even if it’s a little ineffective at this juncture. A couple of weeks ago, Elena was reminded of the decades it took to bring Stefan back from the brink, but with a spectral Lexi in the frame it all seems a little too easy. Hopefully, once Elena takes over the ‘Ripper detox 101,’ things will be a bit more challenging. I can’t help thinking that Caroline might be the key to his return, as she’s been compared to Lexi a few times in the past.
Meanwhile, Jeremy’s playing a very dangerous game with the women in his life. Whilst still boyfriend to Bonnie, the reason everyone’s in this mess in the first place, he’s been spending a lot of time with ex, Anna.
As with most of Jeremy’s girlfriends, Anna was a character that none of the fans particularly warmed to, and we’re never quite sure whether to trust her motives here or not. What bothered me most about this episode was, if most of the cast are being haunted by people with unfinished business, where are all the ghosts that think they left the iron on? And where was Jenna? As with most shows like Vampire Diaries, bringing back a party of old players inevitably leaves things feeling incomplete.
I secretly hope that Elena doesn’t manage to break Stefan too soon, as I was having fun with his bad side. We haven’t seen enough of the Ripper yet, and for a show that usually defies expectations, it would be a shame to be so conventional as to return the happy couple so soon. There’s also Damon in the mix, and some impending hybrid mythology ready for next week. My personal wish-list also includes more Rick, and less missing cast members in future episodes.