Season 2, Episode 3 (“Bad Moon Rising”)
The first time I watched this show I was unsure how I felt about the werewolf storyline at the beginning of this season. I was afraid that the vampire/werewolf thing would feel too much like Twilight. And this is The Vampire Diaries, why are we adding more supernatural beings to the show? But knowing where this all goes I am happy to say that I was wrong. We will see some great character development for Tyler through this storyline and it feels like an important aspect of the show, not just something they threw in to add more supernatural enemies.
This episode confirms that the Lockwoods are indeed werewolves, or at least Mason is. At this point we don’t know how one becomes a werewolf but clearly there is a hereditary component because Tyler had the yellow eyes in the season 1 finale and he has more anger and aggression than he has any right to. Mason has refused to tell Tyler the truth, but when Tyler seems him as a wolf he finally figures it out. Bringing in the werewolves this season is a good way to expand the supernatural world beyond vampires and witches and bring the human cast members into it in different ways. If they just turned everyone into a vampire that would be pretty lazy.
Caroline’s journey as a vampire continues as she is learning the various things she will have now have to deal with. She needs a daylight ring to go in the sun, she has to control herself around human blood, and her insecure, high-strung personality is intensified. But she is also 17 and wants to be a teenager. She wants to hang out with her boyfriend and go to parties, but all of that is much more complicated now.
Stefan is helping her with the adjustment and wants to make sure that she holds onto her humanity. He forces Bonnie to make her a daylight ring so that she can leave her house and try to lead a normal life. He also encourages her to maintain her relationship with Matt. She is realizing though how unsafe it is for Matt to continue to be with her. She could lose control and bite him at anytime, which she does when he cuts his hand on a branch. This leads her to force him to break up with her, by acting like a jealous, bitchy girlfriend. It’s better if he doesn’t want to be with her.
Bonnie is not being as helpful or sympathetic. She initially refuses to make the daylight ring for Caroline because she killed the carnival worker. She doesn’t want to help Caroline adjust because she still doesn’t believe that vampires can be good. She doesn’t trust her anymore and wants Caroline to prove her humanity is still intact. I understand that Bonnie has a very traumatic history with vampires but this is her best friend. Instead of being there for Caroline while she goes through something very difficult, she basically tells her that she needs to re-earn her trust and friendship. For Caroline to hold onto her humanity she needs those human connections that she had before, and Bonnie doesn’t seem to want to help with that.
Meanwhile, Damon, Alaric, and Elena are going to Duke to look through Isobel’s old research. While there they learn a lot about werewolf lore and Elena searches for information on her connection to Katherine. They learn about the Sun and the Moon Curse which is an old Aztec curse put on vampires and werewolves respectively to keep vampires from being able to go out in the day, and werewolves having to turn at the full moon. There is also a history of rivalry between vampires and werewolves with werewolves hunting vampires around a full moon. A werewolf bite to a vampire is fatal.
This trip to Duke also serves as a way to evaluate where Damon stands with Elena since he tried to kill Jeremy. Damon keeps acting like it’s not that big of a deal since Jeremy didn’t die and thinks that Elena will just get over it. Elena knows that she is not going to forgive him for this and she has no intention of being his friend again. But she keeps that to herself until she gets information from him. She gets him to admit that he didn’t know Jeremy was wearing the ring that brought him back to life and to tell her Katherine’s real name, Katerina Petrova. Damon is very hurt and says this is the kind of thing Katherine would do (never a compliment). But he is going to have to do a lot more to gain her trust again, not just wait for her anger to pass.
This episode continues to keep this second season going strong. We got a lot of background information on werewolves that will be important for the show going forward. Watching Caroline adjust to her life as a vampire is great for her character development even if it is sad to watch her have to give up the things that previously made her happy. Stefan and Caroline bonding and becoming friends through all of this is also great to see. They have a fun chemistry and I enjoy seeing them in scenes together. The first season kept a lot of characters separate, with Caroline mostly interacting with Bonnie, Elena, and Matt and keeping most of the humans away from the vampires. It is good to see more of them coming together and not just having connections through Elena.
Episode Grade: B+
- Caroline is wearing a really hideous butterfly t-shirt this episode, she can do better.
- Damon: “Elena, I saw the ring. It’s a big tacky thing it’s hard to miss” Like the Salvatores have any room to call a ring tacky
- When Stefan is explaining to Caroline about vampires’ personalities being intensified he uses himself as an example and he lists off all these good qualities he had (he was compassionate and empathetic), compared to Caroline’s negative personality qualities that are intensified – she is an insecure, control-freak.
- Caroline: “My entire personality is killing me
- Caroline: “Why are you looking at him with your serious vampire look?… It’s different from your worried vampire look, neither of which stray too far from your ‘Hey it’s Tuesday look'”.
- Katherine returns and is going to continue to use Caroline to get to the Salvatores and Elena!
- Body Count: None!