So that’s what happens when there is a full moon! “By The Light Of The Moon” as the midseason finale took the threads of Tyler, the moonstone and Elijah and propelled them forward, introducing more mythology and a new antagonist in Mason’s werewolf friend Jules. It was an episode that was chocked full of story and emotion and I can’t believe we have to wait till January 27th to see what happens next, and if you would like a more in-depth recap check out the fabulous Mark O. Estes report here.
To the big story of the night and Tyler’s painful transformation; Tyler a character last season who didn’t have much to do except act like a dick every now and then and be Matt’s friend has been given the chance to shine and boy did he do that. Major props have to be given to Michael Trevino who conveyed all the fear and agony that this change would cause, I’m not a werewolf TV and film buff but this is the most painful human to werewolf turning that I have seen. The combination of Trevino, the horrible sound of the bones breaking in to place and the old school techniques of using shadow and close ups with limited CGI led to a transformation that all at The Vampire Dairies should be proud of. Yes some of these techniques would be for budget reasons but it is far better to work within your budget and create something like this rather than some cheesey cheap CGI. Obviously Tyler couldn’t wear his shirt as he might rip it and I’m thinking that there was some audience enjoyment from this fact. Not that his was the only skin on show this week with Nina Dobrev showing that she can definitely work the black underwear combo.
The other hero in these transformation scenes is of course Candice Accola who like Michael Trevino has been given a huge boost by her supernatural story this season. Caroline (or vampire Barbie) was there for Tyler through all this, comforting him whilst he lay prostrate on the floor and whilst he writhed around in agony and fear. Only leaving when it seemed that her life could be in danger from the dreaded werewolf bite and returning when it was safe to comfort him once again. This bond is one that I wouldn’t have predicted at the start of the season, and the complication of Matt amongst this makes this a story that will develop in to some excellent drama.
This really was the episode of the wolf, with Mason’s friend Jules coming to town to find out where Mason has got to. Damon not always best at being subtle provoked her in to being ‘marked’, when will he learn? The scenes in the Mystic Grill with Alaric’s help were a reminder of how awesome Alaric and Damon are working together and it is something that I would like to see more of in the new year. Damon though wasn’t the one that got bitten by Jules in wolf form, but Rose who had returned to the Salvatore house. At first there seemed to be nothing wrong with the bite, was the whole thing a werewolf ruse? Nothing is that easy in this town and so it was not surprising the the cliffhanger showed that the bite had gone in to a stage of totally gross, is Rose done for and if so are any of you that bothered?
Elena spent the episode trapped in her house thanks to a nifty spell from Bonnie, this drew a parallel with Stefan’s cave prison with Stefan dealing with his situation with more restraint. Restraint you say, but what about the tease of cave sex between Katherine and Stefan? This was all mind games on Katherine’s part as suspected and thanks to some well played negotiating between Elijah and Elena, Stefan was freed from the cave. This left Katherine alone again and reunited Stefan and Elena who really never felt like they weren’t a couple any way. I thought they were going to leave Stefan trapped a little longer and I was looking forward to some more scenes between him and Katherine so this was a little disappointing. What was not disappointing was seeing how Katherine recoiled when she saw Elijah, some real fear there with Elijah having such a commanding presence when he is on screen. What will become of his and Elena’s deal is something that sounds intriguing, his motives are still not completely clear but I’m glad for his involvement in the show.
This was the night that focused on the wolf mythology which allowed this story to shine, really terrific work from all those involved. The Elena thread has moved along nicely and whilst seeing her rebel from those protecting her is an interesting angle it will be welcome to see her being less impulsive in her attempts at protection. With a new problem with the unknown effect of a wolf bite the next episode should be a treat. A
What did you all think? Are you glad to see the wolf story front and centre? Glad that Stefan is out of the tomb so quick? Want more scenes between Damon and Alaric? Let us know in the comments below or join us in the forums. We will see you in the new year and happy holidays!