It’s the season finale of the fifth season of “The Vampire Diaries,” and what an episode it was. I can safely say I felt a lot of closure during this episode as it appears, at least for the moment, that some of the negative aspects of this show are gone for good. Also, one of the most beloved characters in “The Vampire Diaries” run seems to have returned for good. Let’s dive right into the recap.
The Vampire Diaries Season 5, Episode 21 “Promised Land”
The episode begins with Caroline crying over Stefan’s dead body. Elena and Damon arrive and Elena rushes to Stefan in disbelief. Damon covers up his brother’s corpse and immediately plots to bring Stefan back, hoping Bonnie’s plan to bring their friends back from the other side is still in the works. As the three of them mourn, Stefan watches them from the other side, but the wind starts up and he is nearly taken into the darkness when Lexie comes out from no where and saves him.
Damon finds Bonnie to see if her plan is ready. When he learns Bonnie can no longer go through with her spell because Marie went into the darkness, he threatens her. Bonnie explains she knows she will also die if the other side collapses, so she understands Damon’s desperation. On the other side, Enzo tells Bonnie he knows of another traveler they can ask for help, but he needs a witch in the real world to assist them.
Meanwhile, Liv and Luke are driving as far away from Mystic Falls as they can. Elena stands in the middle of the road, and when the twins see her and try to throw the car into reverse, they find Caroline behind them. They are trapped and the vampires force them out of the car. Elena tells them Stefan is dead, and Liv and Luke seemed relieved because that means Markus’ spell will no longer spread. However, Elena tells them they plan to kill all of the travelers in Mystic Falls to harness their power and bring their friends back from the other side, but Liv and Luke want no part in their plan. In order to make Liv help them, Caroline snaps Luke’s neck to motivate Liv to use her power to bring her brother back from the other side.
Epic Everyday Cosplay: Sink Your Teeth into Katherine Pierce’s Seductive Style
Just outside of Mystic Falls, Sheriff Forbes meets with Markus and explains she had all of the citizens of the town escape through the gas line. She tells Markus the town is his. Markus moves the city line to where the spell stopped so they know how far the spell goes. Sheriff Forbes tells Markus it was not wise to try and take over a town full of vampires, and Markus shows her how his spell will make the vampires powerless. He opens a van and takes out Tyler/Julian. Markus explains when Tyler/Julian goes into Mystic Falls, all of the magic inside of him created by witches will leave, and thus he will die. To demonstrate, Markus has his men throw Tyler/Julian over the Mystic Falls city line and Sheriff Forbes watches as Tyler/Julian dies.
Minutes after this, Luke finds Bonnie and passes through her. Tyler arrives and passes through Bonnie as well. When Tyler comes back from the other side, the traveler inside of him is gone and Tyler is back to his normal self.
Meanwhile, the gang begins to put a plan together to bring back their friends and to rid Mystic Falls of the travelers. Jeremy explains he walked around town to see where his Hunter magic stopped in order to know exactly where the spell ends. Damon wants Jeremy and Matt to enter the city through the gas line Sheriff Forbes used as an evacuation route, and start a gas leak under the Mystic Grill. He wants all of the travelers to go to the Mystic Grill and plans to blow it up with the travelers inside. They will use the power created by the death of all of the travelers to bring back their friends, similar to how the travelers brought back Markus during their mass suicide.
As they put their plan into action, Lexie and Stefan look for Alarick on the other side. As they search, Lexie begins to question Stefan about his feelings for Caroline. Stefan gets a bit bashful but before they can discuss it further, they see Sheriff Forbes and Markus enter the Mystic Grill and Stefan can tell the Sheriff is plotting to get all of the travelers together in one place. He is not yet aware of Damon’s plan.
At the same time, Bonnie and Enzo are working together, and Stefan arrives. Based off of his smugness, Bonnie quickly realizes she is not talking to Stefan, but to Silas. Silas is the traveler Enzo asked for assistance, and Bonnie knows Silas will want to come back with them all. She considers him the lesser of two evils and agrees to use his help. She has Silas teach her the spell, but Elena interrupts their lesson. Bonnie lies to Elena about the traveler that is helping them, knowing very well Elena would not agree to work with Silas.
While Bonnie and Silas are practicing, all of the travelers come to the Mystic Grill for a celebration party that Sheriff Forbes convinced Markus to throw. Jeremy and Matt arrive underneath the restaurant and get ready to start the gas leak. When Sheriff Forbes realizes she has minutes before Jeremy and Matt will start the leak, she tries to leave but Markus will not allow her to go.
Meanwhile, Damon lets Elena know someone has to trigger the explosion, and he tells her he plans to do it. He plans to die and be brought back with everyone else. As Elena protests, Damon argues it is his choice to do this and he promises he will come back.
The time approaches for the spell to begin. Silas begins the spell but before they can start bringing their friends back, the darkness begins to pull Enzo away. Silas and Bonnie grab hold of Enzo, and while saving Enzo Bonnie lets Silas go into the darkness, hopefully to never be seen again.
Now that Silas’ spell is ready on the other side, Liv begins her spell in the real world, and Jeremy and Matt start the gas leak.
As Bonnie prepares for what’s to come, she looks over her family’s tombstones. Grams arrives and tells Bonnie she cannot handle all of the people that are going to pass through her. Bonnie knows she will likely die but wants Grams to pass through her when she completes the spell. Grams explains she will not go back to the real world, and that she found peace. She tells Bonnie she made sure Bonnie would find her peace as well, and not to worry about anything.
Back at the Mystic Grill, Markus knows Sheriff Forbes is up to something and will not let her leave. She suddenly asks if he smells gas and they go look for it. As Markus is looking for the leak, she knocks him out and tries to escape, but Markus wakes up and stops her before she can run.
Damon prepares to set off the explosion, and Elena jumps in the car and chooses to go with him. Damon argues with her that she should not come, but she tells him she is prepared for whatever will happen to them. As Damon drives the car further into Mystic Falls, Elena starts to choke on water and is quickly losing her vampirism. Damon speeds up the car and they crash into the Mystic Grill and blow it up, seconds before Elena turns human again.
Meanwhile, Liv keeps casting the spell and Bonnie waits for her friends. Markus and his travelers all die and pass through Bonnie to the other side, with Markus noting he will see her again shortly. Elena and Damon both die in the explosion and Bonnie tells them they need to quickly find her on the other side before the spell ends; they pass though. From the other side, Elena stands over her dead body when Alarick finds her and tells her to go find Bonnie. Alarick says he will find Damon and bring him back.
On the other side, Damon finds Sheriff Forbes’ body and tries to remove the debris to save her. Alarick arrives and helps Damon; they think she will live but they leave her there because they have to find Bonnie before the spell ends.
As Bonnie waits for everyone to arrive so she can bring them back, Luke grows impatient and uses Bonnie to pass through. He finds Liv in the real world and tells her she does not have to keep doing the spell now that he is back, but Liv keeps going through with the spell even though she is getting sick. Enzo and Tyler go through Bonnie and come back, and find Caroline waiting for them. When Tyler hugs Caroline, he says the hug feels different, so he cuts his hand to see if he heals and he doesn’t; they realize he is no longer a hybrid.
On the other side, Elena and Stefan do not want to pass because Damon has not yet arrived. Bonnie grabs hold of Elena and forces Elena to pass through her. When she grabs hold of Elena, Stefan also took hold and they both pass though.
Time is running out as Liv grows weaker, and Bonnie wants Lexie to pass through. Lexie explains she would not be a good friend to Stefan if she allowed herself to pass and not Damon, and as she stands there Markus arrives. Lexie is able to protect Bonnie and stop Markus from passing through her, and Markus gets taken into the darkness. Lexie finds peace and is taken somewhere else. Finally Damon and Alarick arrive, and Alarick passes through.
Meanwhile, Luke sees that Liv is dying from casting the spell, and creates his own spell to stop Liv. Bonnie prepares to have Damon go through her, and when they try, it does not work. Bonnie and Damon realize they are too late.
Elena realizes the spell is finished and immediately goes looking for Liv and Luke to get them to continue the spell and bring back Damon and Bonnie. Bonnie tells Elena they are gone and there is nothing else that can be done. She advises Elena to say her goodbyes to Damon. Elena is completely distraught as Damon tells Elena she is the greatest thing that ever happened to him and she is the epitome of a fulfilled life. He says he peaked with her and it will never get better than what they had. Elena cannot hear Damon’s words and cries as she begs him to come back to her, but he leaves.
Nearby, Bonnie calls Jeremy and finally tells him she will die once the other side falls. She tries to make it clear to him she died a long time ago and her coming back as the anchor was a gift. She tells him to take care of Elena and hangs up on him.
Alarick finds Elena and gives her a hug. As they hug they hear Jeremy running and yelling for Bonnie. Everyone comes out and to see why Jeremy is yelling, and they see Bonnie preparing to be taken into the darkness. On the other side, Bonnie and Damon take each other’s hand as they prepare to be taken, and bright lights surround them. Bonnie asks Damon if she think it will hurt, and he says he does not know.
And with those ambiguous words, the season is over! It appears Bonnie and Damon may have gone into the darkness, but when other characters were taken into the darkness, they were not surrounded by bright lights. Could something else be happening to Bonnie and Damon? What did Grams mean when she told Bonnie she made sure Bonnie would find her peace and to not worry? We will have to wait and see, but I would not be surprised if both Bonnie and Damon come back next season.
It seems that both Silas and Markus are gone for good! And I say good riddance; they were the two worst villains in “The Vampire Diaries” history and thankfully it seems they will not return. The entire episode I was expecting Katherine to somehow come back, because typically in “The Vampire Diaries,” characters do not stay dead for long. But thank goodness she did not come back! The one character I am so glad IS back is ALARICK! This show has never been the same once they killed off Alarick, and I am glad the writers came to their senses and hopefully realized this. I hope Alarick stays around for some time. I also doubt Sheriff Forbes is dead; she and Matt are the only two humans this show has and I think it is important for them to have some humans in “The Vampires Diaries” because the show started with most of the characters being human, thus keeping them continues the tradition and remains true to the original story.
After a somewhat staggered season, I feel this season finale was satisfactory and establishes a solid foundation for the new season. I think a fresh and new storyline and villain is in order. This show needs another Klaus or Katherine; we will have to wait and see what the writers have in store. Thank you for reading my recaps this season, and we will see you in October!