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Posted by | October 30, 2012, 8:15 (MST) | 28 Comments
Category: In Review, The Vampire Diaries TV

Vampire Diaries In Review: The Rager (EP403) - Way To BeIt’s so easy to forget that (most of) the Mystic Falls gang is still in high school, but The Rager reminded us of that with its mean girl battle, keg party, and…a super-strong vampire hunter on the loose.

Stefan is on the same mission as last week: help Elena enjoy her transition — without guilt or regret or murder — but he’s up against Rebekah’s attempts to make Elena lose her mind. And hat’s off to Rebekah: she knows how to play this game. (And loved seeing the return of #2 pencil as vampire weapon!) When Rebekah watched Elena and Stefan say their would-be goodbyes in Pastor Young’s barn/vampire-holding cells, it almost seemed like she had changed her mind about them — but seeing how earnestly they felt for each other didn’t soften her towards Elena, it only made her own isolation sting even more. In The Rager, characters face the choice between getting even or burying the hatchet. Rebekah tries to unhinge Elena — taunting her about Alaric’s death and about her past romance with Stefan, smearing blood on her face when there’s a hunter down the hall, and making her sizzle by snatching away her daylight ring — while Elena goes so far as to become murderous. Klaus sees an opportunity to get back at Tyler, and closer to Caroline, when hybrid-helper Haley waltzes into town. And even good-tempered Matt Donovan decides to out Rebekah to vampire-hunter Connor.

On the flip side of all that eye-for-an-eye behavior is Damon. He says he’ll hold to his promise to Stefan — to leave town, since Elena chose his bro — but he’s determined to leave Mystic Falls in relative safety by killing Connor. And with Elena and Stefan otherwise occupied (joyrides on motorcycles, etc.), Damon turns to a bevy of others: he enlists Meredith for help twice, calls on Tyler to join in on the hunter hunt, buddies up with his nemesis Klaus, and works alongside wannabe bad-ass Jeremy. When did Damon get so many allies? He’s developed relationships — maybe not friendships — outside of the Stefan-Elena leadership duo, people who will step up and fight alongside him and trust. Despite the fact that he’s still doing everything Damon-style — a little bit unnecessarily dangerous, and maybe not as effective in the end as he hoped. (Like, did he even look for Connor remnants post-explosion, or what?) But as Meredith says, he’s being a good brother, and by the end of the episode decides he can’t leave Elena behind in his brother’s care. Elena and Stefan individually recognize the limitations of Stefan-as-vampire-tutor: Stefan can’t take any pleasure in his vampirism for fear of unleashing the ripper, and Elena sees in Damon a greater vampire kinship than with Stefan. Nothing like werewolf-venom hallucinations to reveal a girl’s secret feelings! Like Rebekah’s hallucination expressing her fear that she’s undeserving of love, Elena’s flashes of Damon (besides being so very reminiscent of the Friday Night Bites makeout hallucination) reveal her desire to turn to him for guidance. And with her attack on Matt, and his timely rescue, it seems like her wish is coming true.

What I loved about this episode most was the pairings of characters — Caroline and Stefan’s friendship back in the game, Damon trying to buddy up with no-nonsense Meredith, Rebekah seeing herself in lonely orphan April, and Klaus — for reasons yet to be revealed — deciding to protect Connor the vampire hunter, one of the mysterious Five. More than anything, The Rager felt like a set-up for what’s to follow: a new branch in the TVD mythology and a new instructor for Elena in how to be a vampire.

Compelling Moment: As much as the Rebekah-Elena showdown was entertaining, I have to go with the other Original pairing: Klaus and Damon’s brief moment of being on the same side against the hunter was magical. They have the banter down.

The Rules: Connor explains that only a hunter or potential hunter can see his otherwise invisible tattoo. As in the last episode, Connor is faster/stronger than the average hunter. Klaus ID’s Connor as “one of the Five” — tune in next week to find out what the heck that means! Rebekah is affected by the werewolf venom (getting all veiny, and hallucinating) but she’s not in mortal peril (immortal peril?). She can only be killed by the white oak stake (which looked comically large to me when Elena was holding it).

Foggy moments: Why didn’t Connor kill Tyler after extracting his werewolf venom? Would Stefan (or Caroline or Elena herself) really let Elena feed on Matt unsupervised? It so obviously and easily could go wrong: new hungry vampire with willing human blood bag.

Questions & thoughts before The Five (EP404):

  • How did Connor figure out that Tyler was part werewolf? What sort if paralytic did he use on him?
  • Just what happened between Haley and Tyler in the mountains? Seems like Klaus had it pretty bang on.
  • Caroline will be thrilled to hear that while she was losing her father, Tyler was bonding with Haley in just the way Caroline and Tyler first become close. Will Haley be sticking around Mystic Falls? (Please do!)
  • Point of curiosity: what, if anything, does werewolf venom do to an average human beer-guzzling high schooler?
  • Excellent form on the keg stand, Elena! It’s like she’s a former gymnast/yoga superstar.
  • Is there more to April than meets the eye?
  • So many questions about the Five: who or what are they? Why doesn’t Connor know “his own history”? Who trained Connor? How could Elena be useful to Klaus in connection to the Five? Why is Klaus interested in protecting a vampire hunter? What does the symbol, which Connor carved on the stakes and into the bullets, mean?

Crissy Calhoun is the author of the Love You to Death companion guides to The Vampire Diaries: Season 1, Season 2, and Season 3. Find her online at and tweeting @crissycalhoun.

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  • Old Lady

    Is Jeremy one of “the five” too??

  • whoneedsthecullens

    Thanks for the recap, Crissy, it is always a pleasure to read it. I liked your question concerning Damon and his allies – you are right, inspite of wanting to leave town and being annoyed because he is stuck looking after the kids … He is smart and definitely able to form alliances if he needs them. Meredith, Tyler, Klaus and Jeremy… They all are following their own agenda, all of them have been sort of left on their own without anyone to turn to. Be it because they alienated everyone (Klaus) or be it because circumstances left them alone for the time being. And I wouldn’t go as far as saying that Damon only uses them for his own purpose. He just does now what needs to be done.
    Wonder if Meredith will ever join him for a drink at the Grill?

  • Cherrie

    DAMON/ELENA ~ I love them so much. Every time they have a scene together my heart skips a beat lol. I love the scene in Damon’s bedroom, it was cute how she was lingering. Elena, we all know you want him. Also love that Damon is going to teach Elena how to be a vampire without actually killing someone. She definitely needs all the help she can get. OMG HE TOUCHED HER FACE AGAIN. I just love it when he does that. Oh btw, Damon did promise Stefan that he would help him in 3×16 so he doesn’t go over the edge. Guess that’s all forgotten since Elena needs him. Look I’m a huge fan of DE but Damon choosing Elena over Stefan is ridiculous. Because Stefan sacrificed everything to save him. I think he can choose his brother over the girl just once. I’m not saying he shouldn’t help Elena because he definitely should but I hope he doesn’t forget about his brother either. We’ll see how it goes I guess. Moreover, Meredith is totally a Delena shipper lol. But honestly she hasn’t been around that long to say anything regarding the triangle. Let’s face it Elena choosing Stefan made sense because of everything that has happened between them. She never stopped loving him & they= dated but outside forces kept pulling them apart. It made sense she chose him and not Damon FOR NOW. But in time I’m sure it will change & we’ll get Delena ;) And I’m pretty sure I won’t be able to survive that day haha. Sorry, I just love them a lot.

    KLAUS/TYLER ~ So he came  back because Tyler was in danger? Uhh okay. Whatever, you say. I really don’t want to believe that Tyler cheated on Caroline. I refuse to believe this until he actually says it. Innocent till proven guilty right? I like Forwood and I would hate to think that he would do that to her. Cheating is not something I would tolerate. Furthermore, Klaus helping Damon was awesome! They were hilarious. But why did he save Connor? Why? I hope we find out soon. Btw, Klefan was also great in this episode. One voicemail is just as effective as nine” OMG LOL. I know he misses Stefan. 

    REBEKAH ~ “You’re boyfriend liked me once. Actually more than once.” Haha that was awesome! Like damn girl, way to be a bitch! She really pushed Elena’s buttons. I mean she smeared blood on her face. No wonder Elena wanted to kill her. She needs someone & she’ll find some sort of friendship in April. Which I think will help her evolve into a better person. Also when she was hallucinating & ripped out Matt’s heart did anyone freak out? Because I wanted to cry. My heart stopped. It seriously scared me. Thank god it was not real because I would have never gotten over that. 

    STEFAN/CAROLINE ~ Last season has really made me miss their friendship, so glad we get to see it again. Loved their scenes. LOVED! They have great chemistry but I don’t think there will ever be more between the two. Caroline is like Stefan’s Lexi. They’ll be best friends. It’s great how Caroline turning into a vampire made them so much closer & how a friendship grew out of that. It was because Stefan helped her. He said that she was good at being a vampire and she replied “Because of you Stefan. I’m good at it because of you.” It’s so true. Yeah he has issues controlling his blood lust but he still manged to help Caroline become the vampire she is today. I’m so excited to see their friendship grow throughout the season. Ahh I just know I’m going to love it more and more. They are amazing! 

    STEFAN/ELENA ~ So what was the point of that motorcycle ride? LOL I’m sorry but it made me laugh so much. Like what was going on? It reminded me of “The Perks of Being a Wallflower.” Guess, Elena wanted to have her own “We are infinite” moment. LMAO the entire time I was expecting her to fall, get hit in the face with a branch or something. Wow, that was mean. But still…I couldn’t stop laughing. Anyways, I liked that scene where Stefan told Elena that he was not going to stop her from killing Rebekah but gave her reasons not to do it, hoping she would make the right decision. I love that he was able to do that because he doesn’t want to live in guilt, like he does, for the rest of her existence. Moreover, that scene where they were making out was so hot. She like pushed him down & when she showed him her fangs he was so turned on. Then when he flipped her over & started kissing her everywhere I was like “What is going on? When have they ever been this hot?” I was in shock lol. SE have always been cute but I never witnessed a scene like that between them. Guess there’s a first time for everything. Unfortunately for SE fans the moment was ruined with the hallucination. The fact that they’ve been c–kblocked twice already is just weird. I thought they would have gotten to the sex part by now. Like how do you reunite without the sex? And Stelena haven’t had a proper SEx scene since 1×10 so I guess it’s building up to the point where the third time is the charm?

    1×03 – Elena’s kissing Stefan but then it turns into Damon. Which ended up being a dream.
    4×03 – Stefan’s kissing Elena but then he turns into Damon. Which ended up being a hallucination.

    1×03 – Damon: “You think about me even when you don’t want to think about me.”
    4×03 – Elena: “Why am I thinking about you?”

    1×13 – A Katherine & Damon flashback shows them in bed & Katherine reveals her face/fangs to Damon.
    4×03 – Stefan & Elena are in bed & Elena reveals her vampire face/fangs to Stefan.

    2×02 – Stefan: “I won’t let anything happen to you.”
    4×03 – Caroline: “I won’t let you lose control.”

    3×16 – Elena: “If you keep pushing people away you’re going to end up alone.”
    4×03 – Meredith: “Don’t let your pride leave you all alone.”

    3×03 – Stefan broke up with Elena when she finally saw him after months of searching for him.
    4×03 – They’re back together and getting hot and heavy. Wow, things have changed lol.

    3×03 – Damon holds up Elena’s underwear. LOL
    4×03 – Elena holds up Damon’s underwear. They really have a lot in common. 

    Jeremy: “I told you I could be a badass.”
    Damon: “Shh badasses don’t say that.”
    Damon to Ric in 1×17: “We were badass.” LMAOOO! 

  • June_Slibvy

    I was just wondering about the same :D

  • June_Slibvy

    I would like Damon to have a drink with Meredith, she seems to become his new Alarick xD 

  • katherine_fan

    Maybe Mer will join Damon at the Grill but Alaric’s seat will always be taken! :’(

  • Georgia_Peach

     I’m thinking it may be in the Gilbert ancestry, as well as the Salvatore’s.

  • Stevie1421

    may I just say you’re the sanest TVD fan I can think of. You have a favorite without being offensive and you back up what you say with reasons and examples – I almost always agree with you’re opinions.
    With regards to this episode, i was just kind *shrugs* about it. I wouldn’t say I DISliked it but it didn’t really seem like much happened. The motorcycle seen was incredibly cheesy (and you made me lol with the image of Elena getting hit in the face with a branch), but overall the only way the story moved forward was with the line “you’re one of the five” and I kind of think this episode could have been cut out and we wouldn’t really have missed much. Of course it could have just been me who was having trouble concentrating.
    Favorite scene: Damon stripping of course – no contest. The only way that scene could have been funnier is if damon hadn’t said anything to her… I wonder how long she would have stayed?

  • Georgia_Peach

    Nothing being shown regarding the flashback to 1100 in Italy.   Exactly who were “The Five” and what was their purpose?    The director, Joshua Butler, had said this was going to be a fantastic and surprising episode.  Apparently it will bust the mythology wide open and what the fans think they know, they don’t.

  • Cherrie

    Awww thank you sooo much!! Honestly, I could never hate on either of the Salvatore brothers. I love them both so. And even though I ship DE like crazy I will still defend Stefan if I agree with him. The same applies for Damon. I love them both, kind of like Elena =) 


    Like you Chrissy, I have so many questions regarding Conner and The Five. On top of what you mentioned above, what kind of possible connection  could a vampire Patrova doppelganger have with them….I mean, Klaus only saved Elena’s life, by feeding her his hybrid blood, after he realized Conner was one of The Five…so there is that;) 

    On a side note…maybe the next time Rebekah wants to bury the hatchet, Elena should take her up on it. I mean, Rebekah didn’t start getting all “mean girl” until Elena engaged her in a verbal sparring match;) Elena was just being taught a lesson: Rebekah’s an Original, and Elena needs to show her some respect….LOL.


    HI Cherrie: I wouldn’t assume that Damon’s forgotten about his promise to Stefan…..Stefan took it upon himself to go to Caroline because he & Damon were “fighting”….if Stefan felt like he needed help and wanted Damon’s help, he could have asked for it;) It’s not like Stefan was in danger if going all Rippered out right that second;)

    Damon’s good about dealing with the immediate problem. In this case, it’s Elena. I feel sorry for Stefan, though. She is his girl and should be his responsibility, but he can’t help her because he’s afraid he’ll let the Ripper out. Poor dude:(


    In The Rager, Conner told Jeremy that if he can see the tattoo  that means he’s a potential hunter. Stands to reason that if Jer’s a “potential hunter” then any day now he’ll be getting a tattoo just like Conner’s;)

  • Tania Rahman123

    I am looking forward to learning more about the Five, but I have one complaint about this season, and some of last season as well. The writers are fixated on the Elena /Rebekah war. They allowed Rebekah and Klaus to dominate the storyline last season and are doing the same thing this year. We don’t know enough about the Original Family to sympathise with them. Meanwhile characters like Bonnie and Jeremy are being pushed to the side. The writers have decided that viewers still like the bitchy, mean girl, in my opinion its just bullying only its acceptable because  its done by vampires.

  • Guest

    To defog a foggy moment, I don’t think Connor knows how to kill Tyler yet. He’s already tried twice and failed. He obviously knows he’s a hybrid but not how to kill one. 

  • Stevie1421

    I agree. One part of the last episode that made me cringe was the Elena/Rebekah thing. I was bullied my entire high school life so I really don’t like to see it. Here it’s worse because Rebekah is so much stronger than Elena. Bullies are cowards; I really doubt Rebekah would have wanted to fight Elena if it was a fair fight. The only way I’ll be okay with this storyline is if the writers send the message that bullies don’t win and Rebekah learns this. 
    And I also agree about the original fixation. Don’t get me wrong I like them (love in Elijah’s case) but I do think there should come a point where their storyline ends and they have a smaller role (even if they don’t leave or get killed). But I like the regulars much better than Klaus and Rebekah and I don’t think it fair that Bonnie never gets a non-magic story and Klaus is just ALWAYS around.

  • mary.m155

    Whatever is going on, is gonna be big…. Can’t wait to see what happens……..’;)

  • mary.m155

    Thanx!!!!! So excited. This show always surprises me ;)

  • Cona

    Its like we share the same mind! Great comment! So glad Elena didnt get hit by a tree after the scene! haha And omg the Mat-Rebekah scene, I was like nonono, that is not happening and then I paused to catch up my breath and let the blood flow again in my veins!

  • shamsadh

    I thoroughly enjoyed this episode and look forward to the new mythology. Just a thought on the Five – perhaps special vampire hunters trained by Mikel? That was my first thought and would explain Klaus’ feeling of reverence and fear towards them. Oh and I completely agree about the scenes with Damon and Klaus teaming up – that truly was spectacular and just all round badass.

  • Eva

    Yeah, i was thinking of that too. But I also feel-I don’t know why-that somehow Elena’s doppelganger status may have sth to do with “the five”(maybe even involving the original Petrova?).When he healed her, Klaus mentioned that she might still be of some use to him, or sth like that. 

  • Georgia_Peach

     Yeah, I have a feeling the Petrova ancestry will tie in and be a crucial part of the story this season.  There is a hint that Tatia will be introduced in the second half of the season, which is probably in a flashback …. maybe…..

    I keep thinking there may be a problem with Katherine & Elena (Doppelgangers)  both being vampires at the same time in present day.  Does one have to die, or can one be used as a “vessel” for Tatia?  What use could Klaus have for Elena now that she is a vampire? I don’t know, but I do think the writers are doing a good job so far this season.  I’m glad they are not releasing too much information.  I like being surprised.

  • 8Dana8

     I think Jeremy cannot get the tattoo to be visible on himself as long as Connor lives. YEY for Connor dying. xD

  • 8Dana8

     lol, but remember Rebekah just tried to kill her, like 3 or days before? Elena can’t forget that quick, Rebekah is not Stefan :)


    And Rebekah also helped Stefan save her in Growing Pains…, there is that;)


    Yeah- I think so, too. I think Jeremy is Conner’s “replacement”….

  • 8Dana8

     touche lol

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