April 23, 2015, 8pm (EST), The CW
While there was not a lot of action in “Because,” it still punched an emotional wallop. Indeed, the most impactful part of the episode took place in one locked room.
After convincing Caroline that he was still without his humanity, Stefan orchestrated a scheme with Damon and Elena that involved locking up Caroline with him, providing Stefan with an opportunity to trigger her to turn on her humanity. Unfortunately, Stefan is terrible at pretending to be an evil version of himself, and Caroline quickly figured out his plan – though not before Stefan burned a final letter from Caroline’s mother as part of an effort to retain his cover.
It is that letter – and a memory of a moment Stefan shared with Liz Forbes – that eventually pushed Caroline to let her feelings back in. It started with Stefan giving Caroline a vision of her mother’s horrified reaction to her recent behavior. When Caroline doesn’t respond to the imagined reaction, Stefan shared a real moment between them of which Caroline had been unaware. It prompted Caroline to want to see more of her mother, especially the letter she had previously wanted to see burned, and a rush of feelings return to her. With the letter destroyed, Caroline has to live with the consequences of never knowing the perfect final message her mother has crafted for her.
Meanwhile, Damon spent the episode weighing whether or not he would reveal to Elena that he’s in possession of the cure to vampirism, despite increasing evidence that Elena wishes she could be human again. The decision was eventually taken out of his hands. Lily used the cure as leverage to get Damon to return the ascendant, which Bonnie had stolen back from her to prevent anyone from accessing the 1903 prison world that now not only hosts Kai, but also Lily’s band of vampire-witch hybrids.
At the prospect of not being able to retrieve her friends, Lily turned to Enzo for help to avoid her ripper instincts. After learning Lily didn’t abandon him as he thought, he found that he still has some loyalty toward her – even though it will conflict with his longstanding friendship with Damon.
And Bonnie erred on the side of self-preservation after her time in the prison world. Where, in the past, she would have done anything to protect her friends – countlessly risking her life for their well-being – she now looks after herself instead. She refused to give Damon the ascendant when he asked, correctly pointing out that if he truly wanted Elena to have the cure, he would have told her about it already.
But the point is moot. After Damon returned to Lily empty-handed, she decided that the larger punishment would be to reveal the existence of the cure to Elena, rather than destroy it altogether. As Elena and Damon shared a heart-to-heart about the implications of the cure, Damon told Elena that he wants her to take it. And that he’ll take it with her too. What exactly he has in mind remains unclear, as it was previously noted that the cure only includes a single dose.
In “Because,” Caroline is locked in a room and forced to reflect on her bloody misdeeds as a vampire without humanity. While she is eventually released after turning her humanity back on, she remains tormented by her actions and trapped for entirely different reasons. But she is not alone. Damon is also stuck between a rock and a hard place since the cure reappeared – with every potential next step likely to tear Elena away from him. Bonnie refuses to be trapped again, as she was for months alone in the prison world. And Lily is lost without her friends who saw her through her darkest times, as they still remain in another prison world.
The only characters left on the show with a shred of happiness and freedom are Alaric and Jo – set to shortly get married and have a child together. But as we all know, in Mystic Falls, happiness is short-lived. Most of our characters end up stuck with guilt and loss eventually.
- “I think the PC term is ‘witchpire.'”
- “This is like actual torture. Elena and Damon talking about their future together. I want to die.”
- “We went to hell and back again, literally, and you’re more scared now than I have ever seen you before. It’s not about what happens if you don’t give Elena the cure, you’re scared about what happens if you do.”
While there was not a lot of action in "Because," it still punched an emotional wallop.