'Vampire Diaries': Twists and turns, while a history teacher yearns

graham-faris-vampire-diaries-unpleasantville-320x180.jpgOn "Vampire Diaries," guest star Sean Faris joins in on the vampire fun, literally.

Remember that dark figure Elena hit in the middle of the road? It ends up being fake pizza delivery boy Noah, who ends up tortured and staked to death by the end of the hour. But even though he didn't last quite as long as I'm sure he'd hoped, he's not working alone. And the revelations are shocking, to say the least.

At the start of the episode, Stefan, playing the role of the sensitive boyfriend, gives Elena some Vervain as protection, and he tells her that there's another vampire in town, which we've all picked up by this point.

At school, Alaric returns Jeremy's paper on Mystic Falls' past, and Jeremy willingly loans out his ancestor Jonathan Gilbert's diary to his history teacher who plays off his heightened interest as just pure curiosity. Yet, we all know the real reason he's interested in what's in that journal. 

Strapped for cash, Matt applies for a job as a busboy at the Mystic Grill, and there, is reunited with new bartender/ex-football jock Ben (Faris). Meanwhile, Damon badgers Bonnie at the Grill; he will do anything to get Katherine's tomb opened. Luckily for her, Ben comes to Bonnie's aid. They end up setting a date, but what Bonnie doesn't know is that Ben isn't exactly all he's cracked up to be.

Elena gets a call as she leaves the Grill later that day from the mysterious guy Noah she hit with her car, and panicking, drives away as he threatens her saying, "You won't next time." At the Salvatore house, Elena talks to Stefan about Noah. Stefan gives her Jeremy's watch that must've exchanged several hands, and tells her that the device is like a compass ... one that identifies vampires. The Gilberts were one of the founding families and that specific compass was used to identify those who needed to be eradicated. 

Before the '50s school dance, Jenna tells Elena about her father helping out a 16-year-old pregnant runaway. He gave her a place to stay and delivered her baby, but a few days later, the runaway disappeared leaving the baby (Elena) behind. Elena's parents had been trying for a baby for a long time, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to have what they always wanted. Here's the kicker, the pregnant runaway who is Elena's birth mother? It's Isobel.

As Elena prepares for the dance, the compass goes crazy; Elena calls Stefan but Damon answers instead. Damon assures her that Stefan is on his way, which would explain the compass acting up, but we see Noah splayed across the ceiling. After Elena gets off the phone, Noah lunges forward, preparing to take a chunk out of Elena's neck but Stefan swoops in seconds later and pries him off her. Noah escapes before Stefan can catch him. Damon joins Elena and Stefan, and the younger Salvatore brother points out that Noah was invited in (by Jeremy), which was the only reason why he even made it inside in the first place.

At the school dance, Alaric half-lies to Jenna about not knowing what happened to his wife. Only minutes earlier, he sees his wife's killer Damon from across the dance floor. Making a calculated kill? 

Anna "stalks" Jeremy at the punch table and they share small talk. Anna asks Jeremy about borrowing his ancestor's journal, but he tells her it's currently being loaned out to Alaric. Anna gets noticeably worked up and her eyes drastically change (a la Stefan and Damon when they get tense/angry). Is she one of them?

Alaric introduces himself to Damon at the dance, which is a ballsy thing to do. He begins asking Damon questions, including where he's traveled, and a flag goes up in Damon's head. What's this guy up to?, he must be wondering. As Alaric leaves, Damon's curiosity level goes way up.

Caroline and Bonnie make an appearance at the Grill, and Caroline unconsciously makes a dig at Matt when she tells Bonnie she can do so much better than Ben. Bonnie makes a move at Ben, and asks him out, while Caroline and Matt have a trivial fight.

In the middle of a dark school hallway, Anna and Noah meet. It's official; Jeremy's "stalker" is indeed a vamp. Anna tells Noah he's ruining their plan, but he has none of it. Noah wants to open Katherine's tomb, but Anna is after that precious journal everyone and their mother is lusting over. Noah reassures her that she'll get what she came for, after he's had a little bit of his own fun.

Back at the dance, Elena points Stefan to a hooded figure in the corner of the auditorium, but it's a false alarm. Noah calls Elena and tells her to exit through the doors, otherwise he'll kill her brother. Elena tries to escape but all the main doors are locked. Plus, doesn't she forget vampire speed trumps her's? She tries to defend herself against Noah and does a good job at it, but the Salvatore brothers swoop in. They torture Noah after they find out he was a good friend (maybe a possible boyfriend?) of Katherine's. Before he dies (because Noah wouldn't reveal who he's working with, but we already know one of his accomplices is Anna), Damon asks Noah how to get into Katherine's tomb, and Noah tells them the answer is in the journal -- the same one Alaric has. Oops?

Damon and Stefan make a deal in the hallway: When Damon opens Katherine's tomb and saves Katherine, Stefan will kill the 26 other vampires. Reason? Stefan wants his lovely older brother gone. That's enough for Damon and they make their gentleman's agreement.

Alaric walks Jenna home. He asks her out, but not before he mentions his dead wife's name, the same one belonging to Elena's biological mother. Uh oh.

After the dance, Stefan tells Elena he has no interest in helping Damon open Katherine's tomb. And he's supposed to be the good vampire? Elena tells him she supports his decision, but it's obvious she's not as comfortable with betraying Damon than she would've been months ago.

Ben closes up Mystic Grill and Anna sneaks up on him using her fierce vampire speed, but aha!, Ben's a tiny bit faster. See, he's a vampire. And if that wasn't enough -- and "Vampire Diaries" loves to shock -- he's dating Anna too.

Just Another High School Romance?: Matt and Caroline are currently just a cute high school couple. They shared their first kiss post-fight, which was nice, and but their relationship isn't exactly integral to the whole story. I guess with all the dark vampire lore, there has to be some sweetness left to savor. One has to wonder if they will be integrated into future episodes more; otherwise their characters will end up being sidelined, like they have been, to an even greater degree. Speaking of, what ever happened to Tyler? 

Memorable Quotes
Alaric: "First person account of the Civil War? That's like porn for a history teacher."

Jeremy: "You're doing that thing again."
Anna: "What thing would that be?"
Jeremy: "The thing where you pretend we're dating even though we're not."
Anna: "Oh, you mean stalking."

Now that Ben and Anna are in town and they were working with Noah, what do you think their plan is? What are your thoughts on Alaric's wife Isobel being Elena's biological mother?

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Photo credit: CW

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