Owwwoooo! That's my werewolf howl in tribute to this week's episode of The Vampire Diaries, which turns its lens on the lycan residents of Mystic Falls.Caroline's vampire exploration is also coming along, for better or worse, and we see the return of a couple of characters (Alaric, Aunt Jenna) as well as another new face. But I'm dying to break down the specifics of this week, so for my post game on the good, the bad, and the bloody, just
- Alaric's back! The Salvatore brothers recruit him to help them figure out what's going on with the Lockwood boys, and he finally sheds some light on the situation: werewolves. Damon doesn't believe it at first, but once he puts the pieces together he knows it's bad news. The next move is a trip to Duke University to find Isobel's research on Mystic Falls. We meet Vanessa (Dexter's Courtney Ford), a student of Isobel's — or, rather, we meet her arrow first, as Damon takes one right in the back. Vanessa reveals all the werewolf gossip they need: the cursed men turn into wolves during a full moon, they prey on vampires, and their bites are fatal.
- Stefan stays behind so he can babysit newborn vamp Caroline, for what I like to call Good Vampire Lessons. First lesson: hunting rabbits to eat. He also teaches her that being a vampire amplifies aspects of your personality, which means that Miss Forbes turns into an ultra-jealous drama queen (much to Matt's chagrin). But what I like even more is the friendship that Caroline and Stefan are forming, especially when she teaches him something about himself: that he has both a "serious vampire look" and a "worried vampire look." It's funny because it's true. I hope the Stefan/Caroline bond lasts because by episode end, she and Matt are done.
- Full moon alert! We finally see a werewolf on the show, but it's only Mason. Tyler's getting closer to finding out the secret, following Mason to a creepy room under the Lockwood's estate. As the moon waxes (or wanes or whatever . . .), we find out the purpose of the room. Mason chains himself up when he's about to transition so he won't hurt anyone. Tyler's libido foils this plan, and Mason makes himself scarce so as not to be discovered by his nephew when he brings a girl down to the room.
- I'm glad Elena is pursuing the mystery of why she and Katherine look so alike, and she asks Vanessa specifically about doppelgangers. Vanessa asserts that the living breathing doubles torment those they look like. Interesting. Later, Damon gives Elena a hint, and maybe a new key to discovering more about her potential doppelganger: Katerina Petrova, Katherine's original, Euro name.
- Elena and Damon's sexual tension lives on, despite her resolve to hate him after what he did to Jeremy. They share a sweet scene by the car at Duke where he asks, "Have I lost you forever?" She doesn't answer, but I think her eyes say no. Of course, even after he apologizes, she tells him later that he has lost her forever, so he pulls out a little barb of his own. Confronting her about the fact that she has just used him for info on Katherine, he seethes, "You and Katherine have a lot more in common than just your looks." Zing.
- Elena, you're classier than making out with Stefan in front of Damon to make him jealous. Mostly it just weirds me out, so please stop.
- I applaud the show for using real wolves for the actual werewolves (like True Blood), because it's very tough to not make them cheesy. That said, our first look at a were — the silhouette and yellow eyes Stefan sees — is cheesy, and definitely not as creepy as the rest of the scene just before when Stefan finds Mason's truck. P.S. Stefan, ever seen a horror movie? If you see claw marks in the ground, don't keep investigating, run.
- The Bloody
- Caroline and Matt's hanky panky in the woods turns into her first bloody taste of Matt. It gets worse when Were-Mason attacks them, and Stefan has to save everyone. Just as Mason pounces on Caroline (and I assumed, in all honesty, that she was toast), Tyler shouts "No!", and Mason takes off. Big questions: why didn't Tyler turn, and why could he control Mason by just shouting?
- This one isn't so bloody as it is a promise that there will be, in fact, blood: Katherine is still in Mystic Falls, and she visits Caroline, promising fun. Will they become frenemies, or will Caroline be another of Katherine's victims?
The second season of The Vampire Diaries hasn't given us a dull moment yet, and I'm loving the way Caroline's vampire maturation is going. Likewise, I think the werewolf storyline so far is just adding more excitement. What about you? Did you like "Bad Moon Rising" too? Comment now, and don't forget to join the Hooked on Vampire Diaries community group!
Photos courtesy of The CW