Elena lets loose with Damon, goes home to Stefan

Season 1, Episode 11 (“Bloodlines”)
Nina Dobrev, Ian Somerhalder (Image: The CW)

This is one of the most fun episodes of the series thus far with Elena and Damon taking a trip to Georgia where they drink a lot, mostly have a good time, face a life threatening situation, and Damon literally rips the heart out of an old flame. This could probably describe many episodes of this show and it is one of the reasons that I love it.

Elena is convinced by Damon to forget about her troubles with Stefan for a day and goes to a bar with him. He is there to get information from an old friend, but he brings Elena along and she is mostly just having fun. Everything with Elena and Stefan is always so serious so it’s nice to get to see this side of her. Maybe this is more of who she was before her parents died. This is also the first we see of this dynamic between Elena and Damon that will come up again. Throughout the series we will see Damon have the ability to get Elena to relax/let loose when she needs it. Though Elena was initially upset at Damon for kidnapping her, by the end a lot of the ice between them has thawed.

After finding out that she looks exactly like Katherine, Elena is understandably very freaked out which causes her to run off. Getting out of a town for a day can often be a great way to clear your mind and get new perspective on whatever crisis you’re facing. Damon wasn’t planning on kidnapping her and bringing her to Georgia, he certainly didn’t need her there. But it just kind of happened by chance and it ended up being exactly what Elena needed. Sometimes you just need to step away from your problems for a bit before you can deal with them. Once she has done that she is able to go to Stefan and have a calmer conversation about it.

I also liked that at the end of their trip we see the damsel in distress situation from the beginning of the episode reversed when Elena saves Damon’s life. It’s during this scene that she tells Lexi’s boyfriend what Lexi had told her about love, “when it’s real you can’t walk away”. This is likely what makes Elena realize that she needs to talk to Stefan because despite being lied to about Katherine, she can’t just walk away from him.

When she returns to Mystic Falls and talks to Stefan she learns even more upsetting information, that she was adopted. This of course opens up the possibility that she is a descendent from Katherine though neither of the Salvatores were aware of her having any children before turning. She also learns that Stefan is the one that saved her from dying along with her parents in the crash.

Back in Mystic Falls, Bonnie is trying to figure out why her powers aren’t working. From her grams she learns that her powers are being blocked because of fear that has overtaken her. The source of this fear is the revelation that Stefan and Damon are vampires that could hurt her. She isn’t as okay with it as Elena is and for now wants to keep her distance from the world of vampires. There is a long history between the Salvatores and the Bennets who mostly have an understanding that they will keep each other’s secrets. However, Bonnie’s grandmother makes it clear that her loyalty only extends so far, and she will not hesitate to do what she has to to protect her family. This sounds a lot like foreshadowing.

Jeremy has decided to do his local history project on the Founder’s belief in vampires. Jeremy doesn’t really believe in it and thinks that they used vampires as a metaphor for the union soldiers. He meets a mysterious girl, Anna, at the library and she is doing a lot to convince him that vampires are real. She popped up way to randomly and conveniently to not know more than she is letting on. Why exactly she wants Jeremy to know about vampires is unclear at this point.

This is probably one of my favorite episodes from the first season. I have rewatched a lot more of the other seasons but only a few episodes from season 1 and this is definitely one of them. It also works as a start of the second half of the season since I think you could have jumped into the show at this episode without having watched any of the previous ones and gotten a lot of what was happening. This was probably by design since this show aired before streaming was as widely available as it is now. It was still important to make your show accessible to new viewers who may not have seen the first half of the season.

Episode Grade: B+

Other Thoughts:

  • There is a connection between Damon and Alaric’s wife. We see him feeding on her in a flashback at the end of the episode leading the viewer to believe that Damon killed her.
  • Damon: “It’s not like we all hang out together at the vamp bar and grill”
  • Elena’s face while Damon and Bree kiss is pretty fantastic
  • Damon: “Vampires can’t procreate, but we love to try”
  • Apparently as long as vampires have blood, their bodies function pretty normally. I think this is the most explanation we ever get as to how vampires bodies work – i.e. do they breathe? Pee? Poop? They certainly don’t need to eat, but they can and it’s fine.
  • Elena is apparently very good at doing shots, like better than Damon. That doesn’t really make sense though since vampires are supposed to have high booze tolerances. Maybe this hasn’t been established yet.
  • Heart rips are one of my favorite kill methods on this show
  • “This lie I cannot take” – Elena to Stefan. This is not how teenagers in 2010 talk
  • Body Count: 1, Damon kills Bree

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