For a series that prides itself on "epic epicness," this season's first three episodes have felt a bit too simple to me. I'd much rather hear about "The Five" than watch Elena sit on a rooftop with a Stefan or stand on the back of his motorcycle. I appreciate what those moments signified and how this third hour, in particular, renewed the love triangle -- Elena has to learn how to drink from the vein, Stefan is afraid he'll become the Ripper if he's her teacher, and Elena and Damon both know she needs the guy whose heart she broke. But this show is at its best when we actually know what big bad we're facing and when it pits Klaus against Elena. It's time we learn Connor's back story and why Klaus is now protecting him, which should happen in next week's flashback-filled episode. When the mythology runs as deep as Elena's emotions, TVD should feel like itself again. Let's dig in. This week, I'm breaking it down by arcs rather than my traditional straight play-by-play.
• The hospital security is as poor as the high school security: Why was one cop keeping guard of Tyler? Did we learn nothing from the way Connor handled himself when Damon tried to kill him at the Memorial? I find it difficult to believe Caroline wouldn't have insisted on being there with him. Anyway, Tyler heard the guard getting choked and hid so he could surprise Connor when Connor entered his room. Only Connor was ready for him and injected him with a paralytic so he could extract werewolf venom from Tyler's gums. What would he have done with that if Rebekah hadn't thrown her party?
• Jeremy is a badass, Damon's a dumbass: I feel guilty now for threatening to never look at Jeremy's biceps again if he aided Connor. Jeremy may refer to vampires as "them," but he's definitely still Team Elena. Somehow, Connor was allowed to walk the hallways of Mystic Falls High and talk to Jeremy alone. He told him about his tattoo: it's a hunter's mark, as in vampire hunter. It's invisible to anyone but another hunter or a potential hunter. Connor offered to mentor Jeremy if he brings him a vampire and suggested he ask his friend Matt where to find one. Was it Jeremy or Stefan, who was keeping an eye and an ear on Jeremy from outside the classroom, who told Damon where to find Connor's trailer?
Connor had booby-trapped said trailer so that it would blow if Damon moved to remove one of the arrows that struck him as he went about his snooping. Damon didn't call Stefan, he phoned Meredith, who didn't want to hear anything about a bomb. "It's a kitten. It's an adorable, exploding kitten," Damon said. He admitted he's too proud and stubborn to ask Stefan for help. Truly, a doctor is a solid backup plan. It wasn't a total bust: Damon found Pastor Young's letter about sacrifice, war, and a greater evil coming to Mystic Falls, and Meredith had time to make us think she might be Damon's new Alaric. She told him he's a good brother, which Damon denied: "You're strung up to a bomb while Stefan plays vampire with the girl who broke your heart," she said, "but you are doing a very good job of acting like it doesn't suck." Ah.
Damon had Jeremy go see Connor as he was whittling tools and tell him he thought Meredith Fell has a deal with a vampire -- her blood for his. They headed to the hospital, and Meredith led Connor into a storage room where Damon and Klaus were waiting. Once they had him rigged up to his own arrow bombs (poetic), they asked him to explain what "greater evil" Pastor Young feared. It was cute the way Damon gave Klaus his due. "Because I've fought this guy, and there's nothing more evil than that," Damon said. "Yeah, truth be told, I'm as evil as it gets," Klaus added. Connor said if he dies, there's another one to take his place. Ooh, is this like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and a new slayer is chosen when the old one dies?! Damon mentioned Connor's disappearing tattoo and that intrigued Klaus, as did the markings on the stake Connor attempted to use on him. "You're one of The Five," Klaus said. So is there five total, and when they're all dead, they're dead, or will there always be new chosen ones numbering five?
Connor didn't feel like talking, so he detonated a bomb. Damon got out just in time and assumed Connor had died in the fire. Wrong! Klaus had saved him (quick hands!). Turns out Connor doesn't even know the story of The Five, so he has no idea why Klaus has decided to protect him. Clearly, Klaus thinks he can use Connor for something. From the way Klaus agreed to save Elena from Tyler's werewolf venom (more on that later), we can assume it has something to do with her. Could Connor help turn Elena back into a human so Klaus could make more hybrids?
NEXT: Stay out of school, kids