Recap: ‘The Vampire Diaries’ Finale – ‘As I Lay Dying’

I”m not looking forward to this episode. No, scratch that. I am, but with the mix of dread and fascination I usually reserve for footage of natural disasters and Lindsay Lohan court appearances. You know, hoping for the best but expecting an obscene message, possibly printed on someone”s fingernails. Last week had an awfully high body count, and though I had no great love for Jenna (okay, no love at all for Jenna), I wasn”t happy to see her or Jules go. Now that Damon has a werewolf bite festering away, I”m worried that things are only going to get worse around the Salvatore house (which is really Elena”s house, at least on paper).
Elena closes the door to Jenna”s room. Elena is sad, as usual. Damon appears in order to apologize for feeding her his vampire blood. He was wrong! He needs her forgiveness! She needs some time. Maybe a lot of time. He tells her to take her time. But what if he doesn”t have lots of time? Damon, just tell her you”re possibly dying and/or going insane in the very near future! Stop smoldering with desire for just a minute!
Back at home, Damon drinks and looks at his bite. This can”t be fun, as his bite is not looking so great. So, Damon takes off his ring of protection and stands in a window to feel the burn. Stefan pops in to stop him from turning into a vamp crispy. He will not let Damon die today, so to that end, he throws him in a dungeon. Really, Stefan? This is your version of a suicide watch? No, he won”t be able to kill himself, but he”ll sure want to. Damon begs Stefan to tell him goodbye. Stefan refuses. He”s going to find a cure! Damon coughs up blood, which isn”t his way of telling Stefan he”s annoyingly do-goodish, but because he”s dying.
Klaus wakes up in the woods, butt naked. Elijah throws him his clothes and informs him that he was a wolf for almost two days and killed his brains out. Not only can Klaus change into a wolf at will, he remembers his kills. How lovely for him. Elijah wants Klaus to keep his end of the deal and show him where his dead family members are. Klaus says he”ll show him… eventually. Klaus is a dick.
Alaric, who is feeling sorry for himself that all his lady friends tend to end up dead vampires, is getting drunk at the Grill. Stefan calls him for help. Alaric is having far too much fun pouting to help out Stefan. But all Stefan has to say is um, Damon”s dying, and Alaric puts down his drink and puts on his Good Samaritan jacket. I love Alaric, but the guy”s kind of a sap.
Elena takes Jeremy to see “Gone with the Wind” at the town square. People are dressed in Southern belle hoop skirts and enormous sun hats. When there”s a screening at my nearest town square, I”m lucky if everyone wears shoes. Sadly, Jeremy doesn”t want to see a chick flick, which minimizes the importance of “GWTW” to an insulting degree considering the American Film Institute named it the #4 on their Greatest 100 Movies list, but I”m guessing Jeremy”s idea of a good movie is something like “Jackass,” but less classy. Elena tells him it”s NECESSARY they watch the movie. Not because it”s “GWTW,” but because watching a movie in the town square is a return to normal. Or at least a normal were a large proportion if the local ladies have authentic Civil War era duds. Caroline shows up with a picnic basket and goes all Scarlett O”Hara on them, determined to persevere and live (or at least be undead) another day.
Meanwhile, Stefan continues his hunt for a wolf bite cure. He asks Bonnie to contact the hundred dead witches, who are becoming the plot twist hotline for the show. Bonnie fires up the candles and channels Emily Bennett. Stefan begs for help. Emily says, yeah, no cure for Damon. Stefan begs some more. That doe-eyed thing may work on Elena, but Emily just takes off and gives Bonnie a headache But before she does, some witchy voices tell Bonnie a name: Klaus. That”s great, because we know what a helpful guy  he is when he”s not trying to kill everyone.
Mayor Carol Lockwood checks in with Sheriff Forbes. Carol is in a bad, bad mood. She wants the sheriff to take care of the vampire situation or she”ll be sorry. Isn”t the sheriff an elected position? Because really, Caroline”s mom should just tell the mayor to suck it. Instead, she fumes, determined to get those darn vampires. I would think this does not mean good things for Caroline.
“GWTW” is blaring away, and Stefan has to ruin the mood by dragging Elena away to tell her about Damon”s wolf bite. And, oh yeah, he needs to find Klaus to get a cure for Damon. And Elena should really go talk to Damon, who is fixing to die. Elena feels terrible! I don”t think there”s enough cash value in the New York Stock Exchange to pay for all the therapy Elena probably needs at this point.  
Damon is hallucinating. He remembers a time when Katherine asked him to undo her knotted corset strings. I would think Damon would find this to be a pretty decent hallucination. Katherine says she wants him and Stefan, which isn”t the kind of three way most guys like, but okay. We know this is not just a fond memory but a hallucination because Elena walks in to tell him Katherine was manipulating him. I”m surprised Damon doesn”t roll his eyes and tell Elena to stop ruining everything. Meanwhile, his bite gets worse.
Stefan goes to visit Katherine, who is still compelled to hang out in Klaus” apartment. But who should drop by? Klaus and Elijah. Stefan asks for Klaus” help to save Damon. So what does Klaus do? He turns around and kills Elijah. Well, not exactly kill, but stick a dagger into him, which is a sort of magical pause button for Originals. I hope this means Elijah will be back, but I”m not hopeful. Stefan is stunned by this hideous betrayal, so Klaus takes this opportunity to stab Stefan! But he doesn”t kill Stefan. He just likes stabbing people.   
Meanwhile, Good Samaritan Alaric visits Damon. Alaric gives him booze and his ring, which is probably better than chicken soup for a vampire. Damon tries to make Alaric angry enough to kill him. Alaric isn”t interested. So Damon lunges at him through his cage and Alaric stabs his hand. This is a very, very stabby episode.
Poor, sad Elena heads over to the Salvatore house (which is technically her house, whatever). Sheriff Forbes , who is still all fired up, stops her and demands entry to the house. Is Sheriff Forbes the new Jenna, because she really doesn”t seem to understand that you don”t just drop in on a vampire and expect to win that little kerfuffle. Sheriff Forbes then bumps into Alaric, who”s getting Damon a blood bag, and tells him she needs to see Damon. Alaric tells her it”s not a good time. But does Sheriff Forbes listen? No, of course not. She pops into Damon”s cell, Damon slams her against a wall and he escapes. So, now Sheriff Forbes has made the town a much safer place by freeing a deranged, dying vampire on the public. Good going!
Alaric calls Jeremy to tell him that Elena”s missing, Damon”s gone and the cops are after him. Way to ruin a good movie, Alaric! Jeremy is going to find his sister. Bonnie tells him she and Caroline will take care of it, but Jeremy isn”t standing for it. They pushed him out of the picture and Jenna still got killed, so why can”t he go find his own sister? Oh, Jeremy, you”re very noble and I”m afraid you”re going to become a speed bump on life”s cruel superhighway.
Meanwhile, Klaus is continuing to be a royal pain to Stefan. He tells Stefan he liked him better when he was off the bloodless wagon and killed entire villages full of people. Stefan isn”t like that anymore! But that”s the vampire Klaus can get behind! Stefan is conflicted. Hey, what about that cure he needs for Damon? Klaus bites Katherine, then makes her drink his blood, which instantly cures the bite. Ah, Klaus” blood is the only cure for Damon. Well, even though this isn”t a happy turn of events, I”m glad to see that the potential for helping Damon wasn”t available when Rose was still alive. I think everyone would have felt pretty lousy if she had only died because no one bothered to check the ancient witchy hotline, for example.
Damon goes to the movie, sweating and hallucinating. He needs to see Elena! Jeremy, Bonnie and Caroline find him and take him to the Grill. Because he needs a burger and a beer? Unfortunately, Sheriff Forbes shows up and decides to start shooting at Damon. Damon may be sick and sweaty, but he can still get out of the way of a bullet. Guess who”s standing right behind him? Jeremy, who takes the bullet right in the chest. This has to be the unluckiest family that doesn”t live in a Middle Eastern nation currently having a political uprising. Caroline and Bonnie get to work. Sheriff Forbes watches in horror has her daughter gives Jeremy some of her vampire blood, but it doesn”t seem to work. Alaric shows up and Bonnie asks him to lug Jeremy to the witch house. Sheriff Forbes is not okay with this. It”s a crime scene! Her crime, but a crime scene nonetheless! Caroline tells her to shut the eff up and let the supernatural grown-ups fix the problem.  
Back at Klaus” apartment, Klaus asks Stefan to join him for a drink. Stefan doesn”t want to suck down the contents of a blood bag, but Klaus tells him as long as he does everything he says, he”ll save his brother. Off the wagon Stefan goes! Stefan hopes this is enough, because his teeth are looking awfully gooey, but Klaus wants him to down another. I suspect this is going to go on for a while.
Bonnie tries to revive Jeremy at the witch house and calls on the hundred witches for help. They don”t want to help her! They think she”s abusing her power. Stupid witches! They tell Bonnie there will be consequences. Witches are JERKS. Bonnie doesn”t care and tries to bring Jeremy back. Bonnie”s nose starts bleeding, but nothing happens and the ceremonial candles go out. Are you serious? Jeremy”s going to stay dead? Oh, wait, he wakes up. But you know this isn”t over. Witches say consequences, there”s gonna be consequences.
Damon staggers around at the movies. He is so out of it. I find it hard to believe an entire town”s worth of people are so absorbed with a movie from 1939 they don”t notice a guy stumbling around and sweating profusely. The editing was so much slower back then! Maybe they”re all on their iPhones. Anyway, Damon corners Elena and bites her, thinking she”s Katherine. Then, he passes out. And no one seems to notice. Apparently Alaric is the only Good Samaritan in town, jeez.
Caroline gets the call from Bonnie that Jeremy”s alive. Sheriff Forbes can”t understand! Caroline somehow resists the urge to punch her mom and tries to get her to stop being such a pain in the ass. She”s still her daughter! Sheriff Forbes tries to keep her eye on the vampire prize, but she can”t. They hug.
Jeremy gets into bed and Skypes Bonnie. He feels weird! They love each other. She doesn”t mention the consequences, which is probably a good thing. Alaric decides to sleep over because… well, Jeremy might redie, I guess. Or Alaric wants to watch TV on the sofa, I don”t know.
Elena nurses Damon back to non-health. Damon is sweating so much I think Elena might be able to ice skate on his forehead. Damon finally realizes he made the wrong choice to love Katherine. He would glower seductively, but he doesn”t have the energy for it.
Klaus keeps handing Stefan blood bags. Stefan is SO sick of drinking blood. But Klaus says no bloody, no cure for Damon! Stefan keeps drinking. Finally, Klaus tells Katherine to take a vial of his delicious wolfpire (or vampwolf) blood to Damon. Stefan is freaking out, because he knows Katherine is no longer compelled to do anything Klaus says, and now that he”s given her permission to leave, the last of his rules apply to her. Stefan is wondering if his blood binge was all for naught. Poor Stefan!
Damon is dying, and it is a very, very sweaty death. He says that he deserves it! Elena doesn”t think so. But he has no regrets, because his bad choices untimately brought him to Elena. She forgives him. They cuddle, which can”t be fun for Elena unless vampire sweat smells like roses, though I suspect he probably smells like an old hamburger what with all the blood sucking. He tells her he loves her. She likes him just the way he is. She kisses him. If he wasn”t all disgusting and sweaty and possibly dying, I”d be rooting for them to make out right now. But hopefully they”ll get another chance, preferably when he”s been able to take a shower and isn”t horribly infected
Katherine stops by to give Damon the Klaus cure. If Klaus were a pharmaceutical company – actually, big pharma is way more evil than Klaus, so he doesn”t look so bad right now. Damon is shocked she actually delivered, but she owed him one. She also takes this opportunity to inform Elena that Stefan has sacrificed everything, including her, to save Damon. And, oh, Stefan probably isn”t coming back. I”m not sure this is so terribly, as Damon is shaping up to be pretty decent boyfriend material right about now.
Klaus sticks Elijah in a box and puts him in a warehouse with the rest of his family. So, even if he didn”t tell Elijah were his family was, at least we know he didn”t stick them in the ocean. Next, he makes Stefan kill a blonde chick. Stefan is reluctant, but he does it. Stefan is well on his way to becoming the bad, bad vampire he used to be. I can”t say I hate this idea as much as I probably should. Stefan has needed a little jolt of nasty, as I keep expecting to see him carrying Elena”s purse and braiding her hair. Of course, I don”t want to see him play bad Angel forever (hey, it was temporary on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”), but this should be a delicious source of drama and angst for next season. I may not feel that way once Stefan kills a bunch of people at the town square as they watch “The Wizard of Oz” while dressed as members of the Lollipop Guild, but you never know.  
Back at the house, Jeremy wakes up and walks through the halls, certain he sees something. And he does: Anna and Vicki. Does this mean Jeremy sees dead people? Or are Anna and Vicki actually back? I”m guessing that two ex-girlfriends coming back into the picture, whether dead or alive, is going to mean all manner of badness for Bonnie. When the witches promise consequences, boy, do they deliver!
What do you think the story is with Anna and Vicki? Do you think Stefan is truly going to the dark side? And do you see a future for Damon and Elena?