Damon wakes up in the basement holding cell without his daylight ring. Stefan tells him that he has been there for three days. Stefan is trying to deprive Damon of blood so that he will desiccate and become a living corpse, allowing Stefan to lock him in the family crypt for 50 years to mull things over. I bet he’d still be hotter than Stefan.
Elena turns down the opportunity to write in her diary, granting us a reprieve from the dreaded voice over. She walks in on Vicki brushing her teeth in the bathroom. So far I have been lucky enough to never have one of these awkward encounters with my brothers’ girlfriends. Elena asks Jenna if she knows about Vicki and she seems chill with it. I guess she doesn’t care about her crappy parenting skills now that Mr. Tanner isn’t alive to nag her about them. Jenna tells Elena she has another date with Logan. Seems she’s quick to forgive after all. Elena does a horrible impression of Stefan, pissed that he hasn’t been in touch. She also makes a hilarious face while chomping on cereal.
Stefan warns Zach that Damon is awake and tells him to stay out of the basement. Good luck with that.
Caroline is missing chunks of her memory thanks to the powers of compulsion. She thinks she may have let Damon bite her. Bonnie lays on the bed trying to light a candle with her witchy powers. She find the crystal that Damon stole, which we now see is part of a hideous necklace. And seriously, what is with the ugly jewelry? Sadly Bonnie agrees with me.
At school Caroline discusses the Sexy Suds Car Wash with some fellow cheerleaders. Apparently the band participates in football/cheering fundraisers? Definitely not the case at any high school I’ve ever heard of. Elena is disgusted (?) that Caroline is pretending nothing happened. She’s awfully judgmental about the extreme trauma her best friend is going through. Bonnie bolts as soon as Stefan appears. He lets Elena know that he has dealt of the Damon problem. He makes plans to meet with Elena later at The Grill. Caroline asks Stefan where Damon is and he tells her that he is gone and will not be coming back. As if.
Matt is playing pool at The Mystic Grill (finally a clear shot of the building sign) when Elena asks if he has seen Stefan. He is adorable as he invites her to play a round while she waits.
Meanwhile, at the Salvatore Boarding House, Zach hears Damon coughing in the basement and goes down to investigate. NEVER INVESTIGATE. Also, vampires don’t need to breathe so why would Damon be coughing other than to get attention? Zach tells Damon he has been drinking vervain for sixteen years, so don’t even think about sucking his blood! Damon looks pathetic but it is all a ruse. He uses super vamp speed to grab Zach by the throat, trying to force him to unlock the cell. Stefan comes home just in time to break it up.
Back at the Mystic Grill, Elena and Matt are discussing Elena’s morning encounter with Vicki. I agree with Matt, the situation is totally weird. Stefan is an hour late for their date and won’t tell Elena why. She is, justifiably, annoyed by all the secret keeping. An old man approaches Stefan, claiming to know him. Stefan tries to brush it off when the man says he hasn’t aged a day, but Elena isn’t buying it. She takes off, leaving Stefan at the restaurant.
Later that night Elena writes about all her feels in her diary. And, oh yay, this is accompanied by a voice over. She wants to make things right with Stefan but her instincts are telling her the secret keeping is a no-no.
Logan and the Sheriff meet at the Mystic Grill to discuss the vampire situation. They aren’t hiding in the caverns by the lake or in any abandoned warehouses in town. Logan uses his reporter sleuthing skills to deduce that they must be staying in a private residence. Someone please get this man a deerstalker and a pipe! Sheriff suggests that Logan starts with Jeremy in his quest to find the Gilbert pocket watch. Jenna’s arrival breaks up the shop talk.
Back at the Gilbert house Elena is so mopey that even Jeremy notices. Pretty soon she’s going to start cutting herself while listening to Dashboard Confessional. Jeremy suggests that she eat something so she heads for the kitchen, where she finds Stefan making dinner. This is actually quite sweet; he colluded with Jeremy to make Elena’s favorite meal. Figuring that she should actually know the person she is dumping, Stefan gives Elena background info on his relationship with Katherine, painting her in a fairly unflattering light while admitting there was some wrong doing on his part.
Upstairs Vicki decides to party by taking some of Elena’s old pain killers. Jeremy wants them to choose not to get high all the time. He is adorable like a tiny puppy. When Vicki tries to get sassy asking if he’s going to try to change her now that they are together, I feel bad for him. The kid just doesn’t want to have to question if he’s being used for access to drugs.
In the kitchen Stefan continues to divulge the shocking truth about himself- he loves The Great Gatsby, “I Love Lucy” and a Miley Cyrus song. Ladies, this man is a keeper. More importantly he debunks the theory that vampires cannot ingest garlic. While chopping said garlic Elena cuts her hand and Stefan gets veiny eyes. Elena sees this reflected in the window but it’s too far-fetched for her to believe. So they make out.
At the Salvatore Boarding House, a pale and sweaty Damon is trying to summon Caroline. Caroline is at home chatting on the phone with an individual named Tiki about bathing suits. Seriously? Tiki? My brain might just explode. She also says that they are going for “a stripper-pole vibe”. At a school fundraiser. Kids today. The creepy crow perches and squawks on Caroline’s windowsill but she shoos it with a pillow.
Let the Sexy Suds Car Wash commence! Caroline is busy telling Elena the rules of the car wash: Thou shalt not giveth thy friends freebie washes, thou shalt not allow customers to pay thee later. Stefan shows up and she scold him for wearing clothes to the Sexy Suds. Elena strips off her shirt in the least sexy way possible but it’s still enough to make Matt have a sad. Through Bonnie we meet the illustrious Tiki who is insulting some poor kid because his car is, in her words, a POS. Bonnie uses her witchy powers to make soapy water explode all over Tiki. Super sweet use of magic Bonnie. Or not. Matt saves the day by turning off the bewitched hose. My hero.
Because nothing of importance every happens in Mystic Falls, Logan is reporting on the car wash for the local news. And Jenna is there on a date with him? The men in this town have no game. Also, there are two kids in the background striking manly poses in front of a banner. And it is amazing. Logan and Jenna reminisce about having sex in a minivan in the high school parking lot, and it makes me throw up a little bit.
While sudsing up a car Elena sees Stefan’s ring is getting full of soap. She mentions noticing that Damon has one too and asks what the deal is. Stefan says it’s the family crest and the stone is lapis lazuli. Elena offers to store it in her bag but Stefan says no thanks. How awesome would it be if she just ripped it off and he started sizzling in front of everyone? Elena tells Caroline they need more towels so she goes into the school to get more. We see the crow watching her. While walking through the halls looking even skankier than the Jessica Simpson version of Daisy Duke, Caroline has a vision of Damon asking for help.
The old man who recognized Stefan at the Mystic Grill pays Elena to have his car washed and she asks where he saw Stefan before. The old man mentions staying at the Salvatore Boarding House when he first came to Mystic Falls. Stefan was passing through town and strange animal attacks were happening. Stefan’s Uncle Joseph was one of the attackees. And the old man is Tiki’s grandfather! And she is a bitch to him! Grandpa Tiki remembers Stefan’s ugly ring and his brother Damon. From Summer 1953.
Elena asks Stefan is there are any more Salvatores in Mystic Falls. When he only mentions his uncle, she asks where the rest went, but he only gives vague answers.
Meanwhile, Vicki brings Jeremy to her other favorite party place- the cemetery. This gal has serious issues. She introduces him to her other druggie friends.
Back at the Sexy Suds, Jenna introduces Elena to Logan. Elena asks Logan if she can ask him for a favor. She wants to see old news stories from the fifties. They head over to the station.
Caroline, following Damon’s voice, goes to the Salvatore Boarding House. She releases him from his prison cell after he compels her to open the door and forget about it. Zach tries to stop him from escaping but Damon snaps his neck and chases a terrified Caroline. When he tries to exit the house, his skin is fried like extra crispy chicken as Stefan has taken his daylight ring.
Tiki tries to make Bonnie sweep the pavement over at Sexy Suds. Pissed off, Bonnie uses her witchy powers to light a puddle on fire which then ignites a car. That escalated quickly. Stefan shakes her out of her trance and the fire disappears. Bonnie asks if she caused the fire and begs him not to tell anybody.
Logan shows Elena around the news studio, leaving her to view archived footage.
Vicki passes Elena’s old painkillers around to her cemetery party friends. Jeremy gets pissed that she took them and storms off. She follows him into the woods and gives an angry speech about how he’s just going through a phase and will move on from all of this while she’s doomed to be a cemetery-partying loser. Seriously Jeremy, drop this chick.
Logan has returned to Sexy Suds to cover the fire that lasted all of five seconds. Stefan asks Matt if he has been Elena but he doesn’t know where she is. Matt tells him that Elena is big on trust, so he shouldn’t keep things from her because it will just make her take it upon herself to dig for the info. Cue Elena finding old news footage from the Salvatore Boarding House where she spots Stefan in the background.
Caroline’s mom, the sheriff, tries to get her to open up about what’s been going on. Caroline is a super bitch, and not even in a funny way. Stefan arrives home to find Zach’s lifeless body. Elena has a lame voice over about how she isn’t a believer… and I’m bored. I can’t wait until they kill these voice overs for good. Caroline falls asleep next to Damon’s crystal. Bonnie goes to visit a crazy haired Grams. Logan steals the Gilbert pocket watch from Jeremy’s room.
Elena begins to put all of the puzzle pieces together: Stefan doesn’t age, he heals at miraculous speeds, and his eyes go all veiny. Girls get bitten and bodies are drained of blood. When Vicki first woke up from her attack she said it was a vampire.
Vicki is still hanging around with her loser friends at the cemetery. She is chosen to turn the radio on in a car when she comes across a severely weakened Damon. She tries to help him and he bites, draining her.
Stefan gets super serious and grabs a stake, running to the door. He opens it and finds…Elena, who demands to know what he is.
BODY COUNT: 1
CAROLINE: “Mom, if I wanna talk boys I’ll call dad. At least he’s successfully dating one.”
“Wait It Out” by Imogen Heap. Elena bumps into Vicki in the bathroom.
“When a Heart Breaks” by S.O. Stereo. Elena and Matt play pool.
“Be There” by Howie Day. Elena and Stefan kiss while cooking.
“Don’t Trust Me” by 3OH!3. Sexy Suds Car Wash.
“Save the Lies” by Gabriella Cilmi. Elena asks Stefan about his family during the car wash.
“Boom” by Anjulie. Bonnie sets a car on fire.
“Beauty of the Dark” by Mads Langer. Caroline talks with her mother; Stefan finds Zach’s body; Vicki sees Damon in the woods.