TV REVIEW: The Vampire Diaries Season 4, Episode 3 – “The Rager”

One would think that with the gang’s terrible luck at public gatherings, they would steer clear of large parties.

Understandably freaked out by the assassination attempt on Tyler at the council’s memorial, Mayor Lockwood imposes a town curfew. What better way to celebrate than to attend an anti-curfew party? In true TVD fashion, bad things happen.

The episode opens with Tyler in the hospital, “recovering” from the shooting. His room is being protected by the most inept officer in all of Mystic Falls, who wanders away from his post when he hears a noise down the hall. Needless to say, he does not return. Enter our newest vampire hunter, Connor Jordan. He and Tyler scuffle, but he eventually incapacitates the hybrid and uses a syringe to extract some werewolf venom before disappearing into the night.

He pops up again at Mystic Falls High, finding Jeremy and telling him he is also destined to become a hunter because he can see the “hunter’s mark,” the arm tattoo invisible to everyone else but other hunters. Rebekah is there as well, handing out flyers for her anti-curfew party. She  immediately commences torturing Elena, who is still having trouble controlling her baby vampire emotions. When she complains loudly to anyone who will listen, Stefan decides that they should cut the rest of their classes and go for a ride on his motorcycle.

When Tyler gets home from the hospital, he get an unwelcome surprise in the form of some new hybrid bodyguards. As if that’s not bad enough, Klaus is back (yay!) and determined to keep all of his hybrids alive, since he can’t create any more. He whisks Tyler off to a fortified cabin full of other hybrids. While there, he gets a visitor in the form of Hailey (played by The Secret Circle‘s Phoebe Tonkin), a pretty werewolf. It turns out that she helped him break his sire bond, along with some other hanky panky while they were alone in the woods.

Damon decides to go after Connor. After an unsuccessful attempt at his trailer, he concocts a plan with Jeremy and Klaus (shocking, I know) to catch the hunter. Jeremy lures Connor to the hospital, where Damon and Klaus trap and confront him. Klaus notices the markings on his arrows and comments that he’s one of “the five.” No one knows what that means, and then Connor triggers the bomb that Klaus and Damon have set, blowing the room to smithereens. Damon thinks that’s the end of Connor, but of course, it’s never that easy; after discovering who Connor is, Klaus decides he wants him alive.

After their bike ride, Stefan and Elena turn up at Rebekah’s party. Unbeknownst to Stefan, Elena has located the white oak stake and is determined to use it on Rebekah. Stefan stops her, but she needn’t have bothered: Connor has spiked the beer keg with the werewolf venom. Rebekah and Elena both have some and fall ill. Klaus winds up saving Elena, saying that he needs her alive – probably something to do with Connor. When they get home, Elena nearly kills Matt during a feeding. Damon stops her, and tells her he’s going to teach her the right way to be a vampire.

Solid episode – I am very pleased to see the originals back in Mystic Falls; things are always so much more interesting when they’re around. Klaus is still full of menacing charm, and Rebekah is still nasty on the outside, but really vulnerable and lonely on the inside. They’re not currently on good terms, but with his sister pumped full of werewolf venom, I suspect a reconciliation is on the horizon.

Stefan and Damon still aren’t on good terms: Stefan is worried about Elena, and Damon is worried about Damon. Stefan has a great scene with Caroline, when he asks her to help Elena enjoy the fun parts of being a vampire. When he tells her she’s good at it, she reminds him that she’s only good at it because of him – because he helped her through her transition. It really highlights the differences between him and his brother, who is only ever out for himself and what he wants.

I have to admit, I haven’t been impressed with vampire Elena. She’s so unlike Caroline, who only came into her own as a character after she became a vampire. Elena, on the other hand, has become annoyingly indecisive and even deceptive, if next week’s promo is anything to go by. I’d rather hoped she’d be more like Caroline. We are only 3 episodes in, though, so for now, I will give her the benefit of the doubt.


Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Mirjana

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