Synopsis: Everyone dies. Well, at least Jo and Liv and Kai do. Elena gets off easy: she’s in a state of suspended animation until Bonnie dies.

Rating: ★★★★☆

Well, at least we didn’t kill Elena.

This episode was a downer if I ever saw one. Thanks, TVD writers.

The scene opens after Kai crashes Ric and Jo’s wedding. It’s chaos. Among the shattered glass and bleeding guests lays an unconscious Elena. Damon desperately tries to feed her his blood, but she’s not waking up. A (slightly) calmer Stefan tells Damon to vamp Elena off to the hospital, which he does – leaving all the other poor sops who aren’t his girlfriend to their slow, grisly deaths. #sensitive

Kai surveys his handiwork with satisfaction. Daddy Gemini stumbles forward to try and subdue his son, knowing that if Kai dies, so does the rest of the coven. As a circle of witches start chanting to banish Kai back to his prison world, he gives a speech about how his family thinks he’s trash, so he might as well act the part.

Then he stabs himself in the neck with a piece of glass.

We learn that Jo and her unborn magictwins are already dead. (Killing the pregnant lady? Ice cold, writers.) As Kai dies, so do the rest of the Gemini coven.

Flash to: Tyler and Liv laying together in a pool of their collective blood. Liv tells Tyler to save himself. How? Kill her and activate his werewolf gene to heal himself. He reluctantly agrees,tells Liv he loves her, and then suffocates her. Go gently into the night, WonderWitch.

Next on the list of twisted scenarios: Stefan tracks down Lily to ask what the hell she did. Turns out that she brought Kai and her family back in exchange for some of her blood. Too bad it looks like Kai double-crossed her because her family are nowhere to be found.

Back at the wedding, Kai wakes up and pulls the shard of glass out of his neck. (Can we take a moment to think about how twisted it would have been if Liv didn’t have to die but Tyler killed her anyway? The writers aren’t that cruel, though. Apparently the Gemini people die even if Kai becomes immortal.)

Ric packs Jo’s begowned, bloodied corpse into the back of his car and covers her face with a veil before reaching into his glove compartment for a revolver to blow his brains out. Kai, ever the Ruiner-of-Things, interrupts Ric’s suicide attempt. Ric empties the chamber into Kai’s chest, leaving him fresh out of bullets to put the poor guy out of his misery. Suicide is never the answer, kids.

Tyler interrupts this scene – he’s all wolfed-out and bites Kai. Kai meanders off to the hospital where Damon is watching over a sleeping Elena. Kai wants the cure for his werewolf bite. Damon isn’t willing to play nice until Kai fixes Elena.

That’s when we learn the nature of Elena’s swan song. Kai bound her unconsciousness to Bonnie’s life.

Meaning that as long as Bonnie lives, Elena sleeps.

Stefan and Caroline talk their relationship status without coming to a satisfying conclusion.

Bonnie tortures a weakened, werewolf-bitten Kai for a reversal spell. Unfortunately, werewolf bites are magic, so Kai siphons the magic from the bite to make himself stronger. He then proceeds to injure Bonnie. Mortally.

Damon rushes in, standing horrified over Bonnie’s body. Kai gives him the option: walk away and let Bonnie die but awaken Elena, or save Bonnie at his girlfriend’s expense. Damon stares conflicted over Bonnie’s body for a hot second, then walks away.

Kai starts exclaiming in disbelief at how little agony that caused Damon, right before Damon vamps in and rips Kai’s head off. Bai, Kai.

Damon saves Bonnie and all is right with the world. Except for sleeping beauty.

Which leads us to the final portion of the episode. Elena says goodbye to all her friends and family via vision. She tells Bonnie to do her witchy feather levitating trick one more time; says goodbye to Jer; pictures Matt as a police officer; tells Ric to keep fighting; orders Ty to get the hell out of town, and; confesses her love and wishes for happiness to Stefan.

It’s heartbreaking.

In the meantime, Lily finds her family. Stefan tells Caroline he’ll wait for her until she’s ready.

Finally, it’s time for Damon to say goodbye. Bonnie has to seal Elena magically away to make sure other vampires don’t come looking for The Cure. Damon grabs Elena’s hand, and they dance together one last time before shutting the door to the Salvatore family crypt.

Time passes. Mystic Falls looks like a ghost town. Damon lurks atop the clocktower. *Cue title card*

It’s been a privilege, Elena Gilbert. See you in another lifetime.

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