Remember Homecoming? The final football game of the season, the dance, the 1000 year-old vampires plotting to kill each other. The last one may be a tradition exclusive to Mystic Falls. But the mid-season finale of “Vampire Diaries,” “Homecoming,” proved that, deep down, even vampires want to party with the in crowd. The two themes of the episode were trust and family loyalty. In the end, loyalty beat trust by a couple of touchdowns.
Stefan (Paul Wesley), Damon (Ian Somerhalder), Elena (Nina Dobrev), Mikael (Sebastian Roche) and Rebekah (Claire Holt) have reluctantly teamed up to take down Klaus. Stefan phones Klaus (Joseph Morgan), who is feasting on hipsters in Portland, to tell him that Mikael has been daggered. It’s technically true. Elena has, with Mikael’s consent, daggered him to lure Klaus back to town. Klaus insists on talking to Rebekah for additional confirmation. After Elena removes the dagger, Mikael wakes up to Rebekah, who has a millennium’s worth of built up anger about being turned into a vampire. Children never appreciate the sacrifices their parents make for them.
As if Elena does not have enough on her plate, Caroline (Candice Accola) insists she attend homecoming. Caroline is probably going to use her vampire status to have a whole bunch of senior years of high school. Unfortunately, her dream of a normal homecoming is marred by Tyler’s (Michael Trevino) idea of pre-gaming: drinking from Rebekah’s human minions. She is annoyed that Tyler set Matt (Zach Roerig) up with Rebekah for the dance. How come Matt’s suddenly okay with dating a vampire? That was a dealbreaker for him with Caroline. Maybe seeing dead people made him more open minded.
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Rebekah is even more excited about homecoming than Caroline, because she never got to experience normal teen life. When she was born it was normal for teenage girls to be married off, so maybe she should thank Mikael for allowing her to live long enough to experience a contemporary adolescence. She wants nothing to do with the plot to kill Klaus because she still loves her brother. She tells Elena, “I’ve spent my whole life loving and hating my brother in equal measure. I never thought I’d be the one to drive a stake through his heart.” Elena gives her the necklace to wear to the dance. Then, she daggers Rebekah while her back is turned. Well damn, Elena is becoming quite the bad ass. Damon tells her he has a plan but doesn’t want her to have any part of it. She agrees to trust him — and, in fact, theirs is the only trust that is not betrayed during the course of this episode.
Matt shows up at the Salvatore mansion with a corsage for Rebekah. Elena dances around why Rebekah is not available, and offers to be Matt’s date. The gym floods so homecoming is moved to the Lockwood house. That’s strange. Even stranger, Tyler’s put together a rager on a moment’s notice. Apparently, event planning is a hybrid power. It all becomes clear when Tyler tells Stefan that he put the event together at Klaus’s request. That’s right: Klaus’s fiendish plot involved flooding a high school gym. Stefan offers to bring Klaus to Mikael – but wants to be released from his compulsion first. Klaus says he will free him after Michael is dead and his dagger is destroyed.
Mikael shows Damon his Original killing stake. Damon asks him, “Why feed on vampires? Don’t tell me it’s for the smooth aftertaste.” Mikael explains that he trained himself to feed on the predators, not the innocent. Stefan tells them that Klaus wants Mikael’s body delivered to his doorstep. Mikael feeds from Stefan to knock him out.
Klaus reveals to Tyler he invited a bunch of hybrids to the party. Tyler tells Caroline that Klaus is onto whatever her friends are plotting. She makes it clear she has no idea what’s going on, but she wouldn’t tell him if she did because he can’t be trusted. Tyler injects Caroline with vervane. When Caroline wakes up, he tells her that being Klaus’s sire is worth it because he no longer has to turn into a werewolf every month. He used to be controlled by the moon. Caroline dumps him.
Mikael finally arrives. He can’t come inside the house because he’s not invited. Klaus tells his stepdad there is a hybrid army behind him. Mikael calls him a coward hiding behind his minions. He threatens to kill Elena, pointing out that if she dies he will be unable to create more hybrids. Klaus dares Mikael to kill her. So Mikael sticks a knife into Elena. Surprise! It’s actually Katherine. She throws vervane grenades at the hybrids. Damon is about to stake Klaus, but Stefan appears and pushes him away. Klaus manages to stake Mikael. The stake and Mikael literally go up in flames. He was a great villain. It’s a shame he didn’t stick around longer. Klaus frees Stefan, and thanks him for being a friend. Then they go eat cheesecake on the lanai.
Damon laments to Elena that their plan failed. The one thing that they counted on was Stefan wanting Klaus dead. Elena tells him that it’s okay. It seems like they’ll kiss but Katherine calls to say she’s going back into hiding. What she does not reveal is that Stefan is with her. Flashback to Klaus telling Katherine that if he dies, the hybrids have standing orders to kill Damon. That’s why Stefan saved Klaus. Stefan phones Klaus to thank him for his freedom. He tells gloats that revenge never gets old. He has the coffins containing Klaus’s siblings. If he hurts anyone Stefan loves, it’s over for his family.