A Sashurai’s Review: The Vampire Diaries – Season 5×11 (And then there was one Nina)


The Vampire Diaries ushered in its 100th episode with cameo’s galore and a witty turning point that no one saw coming. I’m referring to Klaus and Caroline, not the doppelganger cliffhanger that was a dead giveaway halfway through the episode. Katherine’s good/evil rubber band syndrome finally snapped as she undoubtedly landed somewhere between chaotic neutral and unbridled misfit. It was a crafty mosaic that brought many past and present characters back for a few seconds of deserved nostalgia. Had Lexi been a part of it I’d have been completely satisfied with the result.

“500 Years of Solitude” was essentially a character piece that drew in its focus on the unfortunate tale of Katarina Petrova. While many scenes were set up to offer forgiveness and jaded reflection, it felt more critical to shift such moments onto Damon who prattled on about Katherine’s evil ways. It was a bit of a distraction barely saved by Stefan’s movement to see past her centuries of dark deeds and focus solely on the innocent side that was stripped away. The tender moments proved heartfelt only to once again show us that when it comes to surviving, Katherine finds a way. Let’s recap.


A flashback retells the event when Katherine delivered her child and she was quickly taken away. In the present, she’s in the hospital being resuscitated and doesn’t have much longer to live.

Stefan calls and explains Katherine’s situation to both Damon and Elena, who are both suffering over their recent breakup. Elena, Bonnie, and Caroline arrive at the Gilbert mansion as Damon drinks with Jeremy and Matt, recounting all of Katherine’s evil deeds done to them.

Stefan is with Katherine upstairs as she complains about wanting to die before she looks hideous.

Nadia arrives, finds Matt in the wine cellar, and knocks him out. She confronts the group, telling them that she hid Matt away in the forest within the safe and forces their help with saving Katherine. Stefan and Elena go with her to an abandoned house near the woods where they meet Mia, a Traveler who agreed to a deal made by Nadia. The deal included the doppelgangers in exchange for the spell needed to transfer Katherine into Nadia’s body. The two leave as Stefan and Elena are trapped in the house with their daylight rings seemingly taken from them. Several Travelers surround the house and chant as pieces of the house break away trapping the two between strips of light.

After Damon invades one of Katherine’s fever dreams to taunt her, Liz brings Katherine several syringes containing sedatives for her but Katherine doesn’t want them. She goads Damon, who injects her with a sedative sending her into another dream, this time as she first glimpsed Stefan back in 1864 when she and Emily first entered Mystic Falls.

While Bonnie and Jeremy are looking for Matt, Caroline runs into Klaus who mentions that Damon told him of Katherine’s imminent demise. Caroline, still fed up with Klaus, avoids him until he reveals that Matt has been saved. Matt finds himself free from the safe and sees Rebekah is who helped him as they both smile.

Meanwhile, at the abandoned house, the chanting continues as a male Traveler cuts both Elena and Stefan and retrieves their blood. Afterward, their rings are returned and they are released not knowing why the Travelers wanted their blood.

Katherine begins hallucinating as sees Jenna try and stab her along with John Gilbert who attempts to cut off her fingers, followed by Elijah who seems glad to be there. Elijah turns out to be another hallucination as Damon mocks her. Nadia then appears and cracks Damon’s neck. She instructs Katherine with the phrase needed to perform the body transference but Katherine refuses to take over her daughter’s body and wants her to live. Frustrated and unwilling to watch her mother die, Nadia leaves. Damon wakes up having her Katherine’s confession as she injects herself with another sedative.

Klaus convinces Caroline to give tell him her honest feelings in exchange for leaving and never returning to Mystic Falls ever again. Caroline relents and kisses him which turns into a moment of passion.

Stefan finds Damon on the floor in Katherine’s room as he leaves. Stefan remains to say his goodbyes to her.

Katherine dreams herself at the sight of her parent’s murders when Stefan appears in the dream and tells her their death’s weren’t her fault even though she says she doesn’t deserve to be loved. She hears baby Nadia crying and goes to her bathed in white light.

Stefan kisses Katherine’s head and whispers goodbye as Elena shows up believing that Katherine won’t wake up again.

Damon and Stefan then drink on the roof as Damon admits Elena is the best thing that ever happened to him but that Elena will be happier without him.

Inside the mansion, Caroline returns and avoids telling Jeremy, Matt, and Bonnie about Klaus. They group reminisce as Bonnie sees Vickie, who says to tell Matt that she loves him and not to hang around Rebekah. Tyler then shows up saying he’s a parting gift from Rebekah. Stefan joins the group as Jeremy and Bonnie see Alaric watching the group and teases not wanting to leave Damon in charge and not look back. Bonnie then sees Katherine, who refuses to pass on and forces her body to wake up.

Elena is surprised by Katherine waking up but tells her she forgives Katherine for what she’s done saying that she wasn’t born evil but life made her that way. Katherine scolds her regardless and tells her to inject the last sedative, which Elena complies to. As the moment of injection, Katherine grabs Elena and performs the chant allowing her body to transfer into Elena’s. Elena passes out and then wakes to her phone ringing. She answers and it’s Mia and Nadia who asks if the swap worked. Elena says of course it worked and reveals herself to be Katherine. After she hangs up she looks in the mirror and pretends to act like Elena to keep her swap a secret.


There you have it. Katherine is around for a little while longer and now she’s in control of Elena’s body which will be an interesting ride. I’ve enjoyed Nina’s evil roles and it’ll be nice to continue that trend for at least another episode. Until the plot became obvious that Katherine was going to usurp Elena I was completely prepared to say goodbye to Katherine just as Stefan did. What I find disappointing is agreeing with Damon now that after all the forgiveness and apologies have been scattered forth that Katherine goes and does something devious to maintain her survival. To me it made more sense to put Katherine in an entirely new body, but I guess she can’t be in anyone but herself, looks and all. Can’t say I blame her, only that means her days are truly numbered now. Will she go out evil or redeemed? Stefan may not care once he finds out what she’s done.

Something that seemed off in this episode was the way it tried to present Katherine’s passing as a “major” character death with sad music and reflective moments only to continue to berate the situation with scornful remarks by half the cast wanting Katherine to die already and even Katherine herself pushing away from Nadia and Elena, which with Nadia at least turned out to be a ruse. I don’t expect those characters to mourn Katherine had she actually died but the multiple drinking sessions and parading with her imminent passing just seems awkward. Maybe I was too big a fan of Katherine to get on board with the roasting.

The big surprise came with Klaus returning and actually getting what he wanted which was one honest moment with Caroline, which turned into several honest moments. This was a complete bittersweet scene only because Klaus declared that he will no longer be on The Vampire Diaries. It was his way of saying goodbye on the show and he’ll be off to gain his own following on his series. Does this mean Rebekah and Elijah will never appear in Mystic Falls again? Who knows. What I liked in this coupling, was a piece of Klaus’s cheerfulness that is always lacking in The Originals. This was a long time coming and now Tyler must deal with the aftermath knowing his sire now has the upper hand in all things. I don’t expect Tyler to hunt down Klaus again, but he’ll still rage when he finds out what Caroline did. Still, Klaus’s infatuation with Caroline deserved closure and I’m glad the 100th episode was able to provide that. It would have been interesting if any of The Original’s plot made it into the realm of TVD, but I guess that’s not going to happen. Shame. That also means it’s unlikely any TVD characters will be showing up again in TO anytime soon. Spin-offs must always end up standing alone.

The cameo’s were a nice throwback, but they were so unbelievably short. I always liked Vickie, more than Caroline until she became a vampire. This episode reminded us that Bonnie can still see these well known characters leaving the door open for any cameo’s in the future. No one ever really dies on this show, ever. If this wasn’t such a Katherine-centric plot, I’d have liked to have seen Lexi and Isobel again. Maybe episode 200.

Stefan and Elena’s run in with the Traveler’s was a basic maneuver to keep the group relevant in the continuing arc. What does gathering their blood truly mean? Is it a way to end the doppelganger curse allowing the two to freely love who they want? Nah, that’s entirely too nice for the Travelers to do. They don’t seem like evil characters and no one Traveler has stood out as the “leader” which as far as rogues go, I can understand that. But there ceraintly shouldn’t be an endless supply of them. Was that all of them at the house? How aligned are they with the witches and are they the pinnacle of all supernatural forces in this universe? Mia seems potent, maybe she’ll shed some light on the situation soon.

Overall, the plot may not have been epic but it offered a glimpse into how evil characters can be perceived as victims of circumstance and upbringing. That no one is born evil is a time-tested philosophy and surviving can cause people to perform desperate acts that mirror what evil characters do. This kind of show will never offer a clean break between characters unless the point is to write one of them off. Damon and Elena seem primed to reunite in a short span with Stefan practically giving his blessing. Caroline’s opinion makes her argument against Damon rather one-sided. We’ll see how the others take it when they find out she was with Klaus. Here’s to another 100 TVD. Congrats on the milestone.

No more words



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