The Vampire Diaries Season 6, Episode 21 (“I’ll Wed You in the Golden Summertime”)
This season has had a lot of change in the supernatural/human status of characters. Alaric, Tyler, and Elena have all returned to being human. Alaric was only a vampire for a short while but he really hated it. He had actually chosen not to go through with the transition but then Esther took that decision away from him. Tyler started the show as a human, then became a werewolf, then a hybrid, and is now back to being human. What is interesting about this is how it affects all of them differently. Elena and Alaric are happy to be human again. The vampire life was never for them. Being human, having a finite lifetime gives their lives meaning. What does it mean to be alive if you are immortal?
Tyler on the other hand has really struggled this season to have anything he cared about, other than his brief relationship with Liv. He never really liked who he was as a human and becoming a wolf gave him humility and a sense of purpose. Helping other hybrids break their sire bond to Klaus, fighting Klaus, and helping other wolves all gave him importance. Now he is just back to being a human with anger issues. And he is always going to know that he could re-trigger his curse at any time. In some ways that might be better for him, but it will be painful. Now is as good a time as any to discuss that Michael Trevino is also leaving the show at the end of this season. Having his departure line up with Nina Dobrev’s means his is a bit overshadowed. However, unlike Dobrev, he will continue to guest star in a few episodes in the last two seasons, though is role will be fairly minimal. After Season 4 the show definitely struggled to keep coming up with stories for him, but Tyler was probably the character that surprised me the most in how much I ended up liking him. In Season 1 I could not stand him and his character seemed to be completely unnecessary. However his transition to werewolf storyline in Season 2 made me do a complete turnaround on him as I couldn’t help but feel for him. Though he was always a secondary character, the show did a great job fleshing him out and having him evolve over the next few seasons. His mark has definitely been left on this show.
Now Damon is the one considering becoming a human and Stefan spends the entire episode trying to talk him out of it. Elena actually put Stefan up to the task because she wanted to make sure Damon had really thought things through. Considering Damon’s history of being impulsive and acting on emotion more than rational thought, it is fair. However, I did not enjoy this part of the episode. All of the fake realities that Stefan put in his head of how their lives might not work out perfectly was kind of ridiculous. It doesn’t really work and ultimately Damon figures out that even if they fight, he wants a life of love. He has always pushed people away because he was afraid of screwing things up. But throughout the last six seasons he has learned to embrace the people who really matter, Stefan and Elena. He would do anything to keep them in his life and that includes becoming human. Though as Stefan points out he and Damon will likely not be in each others lives since Damon will have the cure in his blood, he is going to have to start over somewhere else. At the end of the episode Damon and Elena finally agree to have him take the cure and they are going to live happily ever after… but we know that can’t really be the case. Nina Dobrev is leaving the show, Ian Somerhalder is not. We will have to wait until the next episode though to see how exactly they pull that off.
The rest of the episode is setting up what is going to be important in the finale and next season. First, Caroline returns to save Jo’s wedding and to make amends for everything that happened while she had her humanity turned off. Everyone is very forgiving and understanding but the really hard part is Stefan. Stefan is ready to be with her, but now she isn’t. She makes some valid point, but really the show is just trying to keep delaying this. With Nina Dobrev leaving and the original love triangle settled, Caroline and Stefan are becoming the new couple to watch for.
The end of last episode hinted that Kai had figured out how to get out of the 1903 prison world. And he does. He makes his reappearance in the most dramatic way possible, showing up to the wedding, cloaking himself, and stabbing Jo in the middle of her vows. We don’t get confirmation in this episode what her fate is, but it is not looking good. Elena collapses as well, along with probably many others. Obviously Kai is the more immediate villain to deal with and Lily and her Heretics are mostly going to get pushed to next season. Next episode is the season finale and it is going to be an emotional one as we say goodbye to Elena and Tyler.
Episode Grade: 8/10
- I love that Caroline showed up to the wedding like she could sense there was an event in need. She does an amazing job too because that wedding was gorgeous. She can also sense that Matt and Tyler aren’t doing anything and gives them tasks. Even though they both dated her, they are so terrified of her. Matt doesn’t even trust himself to pick up some centerpieces.
- Damon is Alaric’s best man which of course makes sense, even if their bromance has been downplayed a bit this season. Why Elena is Jo’s maid of honor makes much less sense. She has known Elena like a year at most.
- Stefan’s vision of what Damon’s life will be like if Elena dies young is that Damon will be left eating frozen dinners alone in the dark while watching cooking shows… too much.
- Elena returns to her perfectly straight hair in this episode, which we haven’t really seen since she turned her humanity off in Season 4. A nice call back.
- Bonnie: “Is this like an Oedipus thing?”
- Body Count: None for sure…. but the ending is pretty bloody.