Midseason Report Card: ‘The Vampire Diaries’ season 8 brings in some bite

TVD -Given that this is the final season of “The Vampire Diaries,” we do have to go ahead and give the writers a little bit of credit. After all, these people are going big with these final episodes in hopes of delivering entertaining story, and there are times in which the risks are paying off.

As for others … well, there are times the show needs some work. Let’s dive into that a little bit further in the latest edition of the Midseason Report Card series.

What worked – How do you go bigger as a villain than someone who is effectively the devil? It is with this idea in mind that we do wholeheartedly believe in. Cade may be one of the most compelling adversaries that we’ve seen on the show to date. The process to summon him was effective, and the slow burn bringing him into the world was relatively similar to when the show first introduced Klaus many seasons ago (though not on that level, mind you).

Also, kudos to the show for finally going there with Caroline and Stefan and committing the two of them to a more established long-term relationship. We’re very much a believer in the idea that if you’re going to go there with these two, you really have to commit to it rather than tow the line with “will they or won’t they?” forever. The engagement was a nice touch, and seeing these two plan a life and a future should be a source of fun in a world that doesn’t often provide a whole lot of that.

What didn’t – The biggest weakness in our mind for season 8 was the way the show handled Tyler Lockwood, which really felt a whimper in the legacy of the character. Why are you going to bring back someone this beloved for so many years and kill him in a matter of minutes? It belittled everything that came before it, and we have to think there were better ways to use Michael Trevino even in the event that his availability was limited.

Also, you can argue that the whole Damon-wandering-around-being-evil-with-Sybil stuff went on a little long, given that he could have easily done something to break free of her earlier than he did. This would’ve allowed for more time to focus on some of the other subplots we really enjoyed, such as Matt and his father and what’s been going on with Enzo and Bonnie.

Overall – Sure, we do still miss Nina Dobrev, but so far through season 8 the writers are finding some unique ways to raise the stakes and build towards what could be an exciting, dangerous conclusion. You have to give them some credit for that! Grade: B.

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