The Vampire Diaries Review: “Rescue Me” (Season 5, Episode 17)



Elena (Nina Dobrev) has been back to being herself for all of five minutes at this point and she’s already being scrutinized for her poor parenting skills. The Vampire Diaries didn’t waste anytime jumping right back into the personal drama that surrounds this recent high school grad/vampire/doppelgänger. Elena stepped right out of the back of her mind and right into a continuous string of uncomfortable situations.

On last week’s episode, Elena was plagued with wanting to eat (literally) all of her vampire friends. That included her on-again, off-again boyfriend, Damon (Ian Somerhalder), who was also experiencing the same sort of disease-induced munchies. Caroline (Candice Accola) and Stefan (Paul Wesley) were able to make a deal with the travelers in order to acquire the cure (more on that later), but that’s not where Elena’s problems end. After making it through yet another ordeal of supernatural proportions, she finds herself being scolded, more or less, for not providing her younger brother with enough structure in his home life. Basically, she was accused of being the root of Jeremy’s (Steven R. McQueen) academic issues.

The biggest problem with this scenario (besides Jeremy’s hair) is that there is very little accounting for the details. First, there’s the fact that for the better part of a month, Katherine (also Dobrev) was “raising” Jeremy. And although the school guidance counselor doesn’t have all the supernatural pieces of the puzzle, on the human side of things, he has suffered from tremendous loss over the past few years. Since embarking on his high school career, he’s lost both his parents, his aunt, his uncle, his guardian, among others. If that doesn’t give you a pass to have a rough go of things, what does?

Obviously, there are other issues at play. Jeremy’s abnormal life extends far passed his sense of personal loss. He’s a hunter. His sister/cousin is a vampire. His girlfriend is a former witch and the current anchor to the illusive “other side.” One of his new roommates is a hybrid….the list goes on. Let’s face it, Jeremy is doing pretty well under the circumstances.

What was even harder to take was Elena’s emotional withdrawal regarding the events that have unfolded. Even as a vampire, she takes everything very personal. By the end of this episode of The Vampire Diaries, she had more or less withdrawn into herself. She’s creating clear boundaries between herself and Damon, and physically putting distance between the two. This might be a spectacular new development for their relationship, but it also leaves her character lacking. Although having fantasies about her former lover isn’t something outside of the box for her, it does point to their being something else going on. Could this possibly be a side effect of Dr. Wes’s serum? While Damon’s strain of the virus had been tested and tweaked, Elena’s werewolf laced version was a new addition to his collection.

Besides having to deal with the collapse of her love life, Elena can expect some additional unpleasantness to come in the form of the travelers. As mentioned earlier, Caroline and Stefan found a cure, but in order to get it, they had to make a trade with the travelers. So far, the only travelers we’ve met have come with ulterior motives and false intentions e.g. Nadia. This doesn’t bode well for anyone in Mystic Falls. As per the travelers’ request, Caroline sets off with Enzo (Michael Malarkey) to hunt down the second to last remaining male doppelgänger – and kill him.

It’s not a huge surprise that if this is what the travelers want, it can’t be good. A flashing red warning sign to this already known fact is that the doppelgänger mysteriously vanished four months earlier, right around the same time as Silas’ death. Caroline finds that he has been hidden using magic, and when Enzo kills the witch protecting him, the link between the recently deceased and Liv (Penelope Mitchell) starts to fall into place.

The Vampire Diaries is gearing up for another private war, this time between witches and travelers with Elena and Stefan as the holy grail. Do you think that Jeremy and his new witch allies will be able to protect them?