‘The Vampire Diaires’ season 7, episode 16 review: We jump forward — and two characters die

tvd -Well, “The Vampire Diaries” wasted almost no time in its big return to TV killing off two of its characters … and we’re sure that there is going to be plenty of conversation that comes as a result of that.

When it comes to suiting the story, it made perfect sense for Nora and Mary Louise to go here. They had a chance to die together, and they did so in a noble way by taking the hell stone with them. These were two characters we did come to like this season, albeit it was a little of too much, too soon when they were both introduced alongside Valerie earlier this season.

Now, there is of course the politics of it all, and the fact that two more lesbian characters on a network TV show are gone. Of course this episode was written long before what happened to Lexa on “The 100,” when much of this movement really started to gain traction. We don’t see this being as big of a story (Lexa is one of the more popular characters out there), but it is noticeable that the trend continues. We actually think that much of the problem comes from many of these characters right now being recurring roles as opposed to regulars; logistically, it’s easier to kill them off. They’ve been around less time, and with some exceptions (i.e. Lexa), these are deaths that can be promoted as “shocking” without removing a full-time cast member from the cast.

In getting back to the show itself for a minute now, where in the world is Stefan? Damon was able to transfer Stefan’s scar over to him, but with the stone gone we’re not exactly sure how Paul Wesley’s character is going to be found. Don’t you think that this inspires a search?

One of the things we really enjoyed about this episode is how we got a chance to look back at the missing time between now and three years ago, and through that we saw the beginnings once again of the Valerie / Stefan relationship. (We’re still rooting for him and Caroline, but we’ll go with it.) Meanwhile, we also learned that Stefan may have been responsible for what happened to Matt’s love interest / partner Penny, and that further justifies that hatred for vampires these days.

In the end, this episode was a mixed bag. We understood the deaths but didn’t love them, while at the same time we’re confused about Stefan’s whereabouts and the timelines with Valerie and Caroline. There were cool moments, but we cannot sign off on Ian Somerhalder’s second episode as director complete (but not for anything he did). Episode Grade: B-.

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