Vampire Diaries shows us how not to build up a big badS

You know I love The Vampire Diaries, I really do... it's one of my favorite shows on television these days, something I never would have believed would be the case in a million years. But last night's episode had me slapping my forehead so frequently and so hard, I still have a concussion.

Vampire Diaries, I'm sending you a hospital bill. Spoilers ahead...

There are many signs and omens that prove that you're watching a wack villain. Like, say, the villain doesn't kill the protagonist when he has plentiful chances to do so. Or the villain just hangs around doing nothing in particular, week after week. Or we learn too much about the villain's softer side.

But after last night, I'm convinced the number one sign that a villain is starting to suck is when he/she says something to the hero along the lines of, "I'm doing you a favor by being your antagonist I'm making you a better person/giving you a focus for your hate/giving you a purpose in life/giving you an outlet for all your pent-up sexual tension/making you go to the gym more often." I mean, seriously. Give me a break.

I love Klaus — he's probably my favorite character on Vampire Diaries these days. But all I do, whenever he's on screen lately, is root for him to kill everybody he sees. Klaus' problems would all be solved if he'd killed Damon, Stefan, Alaric, Matt, Bonnie and a few dozen other people long ago. I mean, except for the problem of getting in Caroline's drawers, of course. That problem would probably be exacerbated. On Vampire Diaries, killing someone's best friend or parent usually means you can't have go on a romantic date with them for at least a month. Which is a drag, to be sure. Look how long Elena held a grudge against Damon for killing Jeremy that one time. It was, like, months.

I know what you're going to say — Klaus isn't really the villain any more. And I kind of agree, actually. There was a time when Klaus was in more of a traditional villain role, like he wanted to kill Elena so he could become a full-fledged hybrid. And he wanted to turn Stefan evil, and do various other naughty things. But now that Klaus has more or less gotten everything he wants, the plot has turned into more "Stefan wants revenge on Klaus for turning him evil." Which has felt, all along, like a bit of a shaggy dog story. I mean, we know Stefan can't actually take his revenge on Klaus, or the show loses its big evil dog. And Klaus can't kill Stefan, no matter how many times it makes sense for him to do so.

Vampire Diaries shows us how not to build up a big badS

Oh, and what's up with Rebekah letting Damon go, after torturing him for most of the episode? As Klaus points out, it makes no strategic sense and is also kind of ridiculous.

Really, Klaus should kill both Salvatare brothers and then burn down the entire town of Mystic Falls, on the theory that he'll probably burn the last remaining white ash stake along the way.

In any case, right after Klaus utters the fateful "I'm doing you a favor by being your enemy" speech, the show finally admits the "Stefan wants revenge on Klaus" storyline was a collossal waste of time. Stefan pretty much turns to the camera and said, "Hey, viewers. I want to personally apologize for wasting your time the past few months with my pointless Jacobean revenge-tragedy-without-the-tragedy-part. I was kind of stuck in a rut, but I'm over it now." And then Stefan effortlessly pivots towards the tried-and-true "I'm jealous of Elena's feelings for Damon" storyline, which is so much more fulfilling.

Vampire Diaries shows us how not to build up a big badS

Oh, and it turns out that if Stefan and Damon had succeeded in killing all the Originals, they would have wiped out all vampires everywhere — including themselves. I wish I could see the episode three episodes after that happens, with everybody still just standing around Mystic Falls planning the next historic celebration and chatting about this year's football team and stuff. They could call it the Regular People Twitter Stream.

As usual, Caroline stole the episode, with lines like "Buffy the Vampire," and "Vampire disposal is not my strong suit," and also suggesting that maybe the vampires all just died of sadness. That sounds possible, Caroline! Oh, and she forgives Alaric for killing her dad in a genuinely touching scene.

I still love this show, but I'm glad they kind of admitted that the "Stefan wants revenge on Klaus" thing was a total rathole that never had a chance of turning into a real story. Thank goodness the endless scenes of Stefan giving Klaus the beady-eye staredown are finally over. What's left for us to freak out about? Oh yeah, Alaric's serial killer alter ego. Now that's a storyline with some staying power.

I think next time I watch this show, I'm just going to wear a helmet.