Excellent. There was so much to love about this one.
Most importantly of all, they really went all out with the love triangle. While part of me feels it was a bit too gratuitous to have Elena walk into the ball in that fairytale dress with her two vampire boyfriends on each arm, I can definitely see the writing staff not being able to pass up the opportunity to show that- sure-to-be iconic visual. The tables have really turned in this one with Damon being the brother with the feelings that are a liability and I enjoyed how dynamically the writers got us to this moment. It took quite a while but it felt organic and realistic. I’m not sure how much I bought Elena begging Stefan to “feel” at the of the episode because I’ve been enjoying her and Damon way too much but it was always too unbelievable to expect her to have moved on from Stefan so quickly.
Moving on, I though Esther was an intriguing enough presence. I’m glad the writers as always didn’t drag out the reveal that she intends to massacre her offspring and the added twist with Elena’s involvement is an excellent touch (particularly since Elijah trust her and Rebekah is too good of a character).
Speaking of Rebekah, this was a superb showcase for her as she fell for Matt and then ended the hour having dirty Damon vampire sex (an awesome ending). She’s a terrific character and easily my favorite of the Originals.
The last development I have to discuss is Klaus & Caroline. I haven’t hidden how much I’ve hated the character of Klaus since he came on to the scene but this was actually the first episode in which I actually LIKED him. His growing fondness of Caroline is surprisingly wonderful to watch and I MUCH prefer her with Klaus (as unrealistic as that might be) than annoying Tyler who has the charisma of a sink.
All in all, an exemplary hour of a show that rarely disappoints.