'The Vampire Diaries' Season 5 Finale Recap: The End of the Other Side
'The Vampire Diaries' Season 5 Finale Recap: The End of the Other Side
Jennifer Lind-Westbrook
Jennifer Lind-Westbrook
Contributing Writer, BuddyTV
On the season five finale of The Vampire Diaries, Enzo finds a replacement Traveler. The Mystic Grills, along with its patrons goes up in smoke. Tyler is finally rid of that pesky Traveler along with a few other things. The Other Side implodes.

It's going to be hard to rally the troops until Caroline stops boohooing over Stefan. Now that Stefan has crossed over, Bonnie is under more pressure than ever to find a way to execute her now defunct plan. Whatever it is, it apparently requires a dead Traveler.

An Old Friend Lends a Hand

Stefan's feeling the effects of the instability of the Other Side firsthand. Lucky, he's got some friends over there because Lexie (Arielle Kebbel)  helps keep him from getting sucked up, up and away. 

The Vampire Diaries Recap: The Beginning of the End for Mystic Falls >>>

Double Double Toil and Trouble

Damon is not taking the news of Bonnie's setback well. It shouldn't be that hard to find a dead Traveler who knows the right spell. After all, they're dropping like flies. The latter part of the plan is a bigger problem. Bonnie's not sure how to get dozens of Travelers to sacrifice themselves in order to overwhelm the Anchor, so a bunch of supernatural strangers can make the trip.

Enzo, determined to return, has a plan, but he requires witches. Guess which twins are going to be recruited? The twosome are hauling ass out of Mystic Falls since their plan to kill one or both doppelgangers failed. Luke assures his nervous sister that there's no way Stefan and Elena could have survived in Mystic Falls with the town stripped of spirit magic. That's precisely when they almost run into Elena who's standing in the middle of the road. No point in backing up because Caroline's got the rear covered.

Elena tells Liv that Stefan is dead, but that she and Luke are going to help bring him back. Worried more about the Traveler spell gaining its second wind and rendering them powerless more than being eviscerated by two very pissed off vampires, Liv refuses. Elena reassures her that the Travelers aren't going to get a second chance because in order to bring Stefan back, a lot of Travelers are going to have to die, including Markos.

Luke says their coven would kill them if fought for the other side. Liv says they can't risk it. Caroline snaps Luke's neck. Now Liv's brother's on the other side. Caroline questions if Liv can risk getting involved now.

Line in the Sand

Sheriff Forbes meets with Markos. She's evacuated the residents of the town under the false pretense of a gas leak. While Markos failed to rid the world of spirit magic, he was successful in making Mystic Falls a no pulse, no service kind of town. The sheriff doesn't understand why the scraggly newcomers would choose a town lousy with vamps to make their new home. Ahhh, the good sheriff hasn't received the all points bulletin. Markos decides to give her a demonstration. He uses Tyler/Julian to show Sheriff Forbes what happens to supernatural beings in a town bereft of spirit magic. Please let Tyler be dead for good. Please let Tyler be dead for good. Is that too much to ask?

They'll Let Anybody In

As Bonnie and Enzo bicker over the lengthy number of hitchhikers he's going to need to bring back, Tyler, the real Tyler shows up to make the trip. Looks like Caroline was right. He has no memory of what's happened of course. Bonnie has to break the news that he's dead, but promises she can bring him back.

The Master Plan

Jeremy and Matt have scoped out the town and figured out roughly where the no-magic boundaries lay. Damon says there's a major gas line that runs right through the center of town, and if it did leak, it could be deadly. Like in the form of a massive explosion. Matt and Elena are not on board with blowing up their hometown, but this rag tag group has no way to lure the Travelers into the middle of nowhere to be massacred.

Damon says that Caroline's mom will gather as many Travelers together as she can within the city limits. Jeremy and Matt will be in charge of causing the leak and head for the hills. I didn't hear anything in there about Sheriff Forbes getting out.

Damon figures the town will go boom within roughly 10 minutes. This is also assuming that someone lights a match or something happens to ignite this massive explosion.

At this point the resurrection spell, which I assume falls into Liv's realm will start, and everybody and their brother (get it?) will mass exodus the Other Side.

Searching for Alaric

Lexie and Stefan search for Alaric, but the sexy day-drinking history teacher is MIA. Sucked up into oblivion already perhaps? And why does no one ever mention Aunt Jenna? She died a vampire which means she should be over there as well. A huge, gaping plot hole that really gets to me.

Every Player has a Part

Lots of stuff going on simultaneously: the sheriff trying to gather the Travelers, Lexie getting Stefan to clue in to the mutual attraction between himself and Care Bear and Bonnie explaining to Jeremy how Liv's magic combined with the influx of Travelers will allow the others to make Bonnie a revolving door of sorts. She doesn't offer details on what happens to her when it's all said and done, but I think we all know. Also, how can Jeremy be clueless about the Other Side? He's made the trip.

In a fantastic twist, the Traveler that Enzo has found to make all of this possible is none other than Silas. Silas is working on teaching Bonnie the spell when Elena shows up with Liv. Bonnie withholds the fact that it's Silas.

Sheriff Forbes manages to get the Travelers to cooperate with the promise of tons of free booze. As they celebrate their victory upstairs, in the basement Matt and Jeremy go to work on the gas line. Matt isn't a fan of the Travelers, but he is siked by the idea of Mystic Falls staying free of magic. As the only normal one of the bunch, you can hardly blame him.

The sheriff starts to make her way out of the Grill when Markos stops her. Despite all evidence to the contrary, he tells her his people aren't lawless, and she could be useful. Suddenly affable, he invites her to have a drink with him. He wants to convince her Mystic Falls can still be her home. She makes it clear her home can only be somewhere her daughter can come to visit.

Markos must sense something is up because he refuses to take no for an answer.

My question regarding a trigger for the explosion is answered when Damon tells Elena that he'll be doing the honors. Elena begs him not to go, but he tells her he'll be back. She offers up the possibility that something could go wrong. He promises to make it back to her, and the two share a goodbye, for now, kiss. 


The wind kicks up again on the Other Side, and Bonnie finally gets some payback for Silas killing her father. Armed with the spell, she no longer needs his help and lets him fly away.

The Witching Hour

At 7 p.m. Liv begins to chant while Jeremy and Matt start the leak. Bonnie is reunited with her Grams who tells it like it is. She doubts her granddaughter can survive this upcoming onslaught, and even if she does, she's still the Anchor. In case you haven't figured it out, there's nothing short of a Hail Mary that's going to allow Bonnie to emerge alive.

Grams says she will not be making the trip because she's found her peace. That's been big this episode; supernaturals who've made peace and moved on. Maybe that's what happened to Jenna. Although, given the circumstances of her demise, this seems unlikely. Lexie and Stefan discuss it in terms of Alaric and themselves.

Anyway, back to Grams. her peace was making sure that Bonnie found hers. Hardly the time to be so cryptic.

Markos keeps the sheriff close even as her phone rings constantly. He wonders why she would evacuate the town but stay to lecture the Travelers on their civic duties. She says the captain goes down with the ship. Realizing Markos could screw up the works, she asks him if he smells gas. Once in the back, she clocks him in the head with her gun and texts Damon that it's go time. As she tries to leave, Markos grabs her.

Damon, who's sitting on his car just outside the town limits, receives the sheriff's text and prepares to enter Mystic Falls, for what could be, the last time. Elena's all "you jump, I jump." The two have an Empire Strikes Back meets Thelma and Louise moment just before crashing into the Grille. And as promised, BOOM!

The Long and Winding Road

In the woods, Bonnie comes face to face with the Travelers, including Markos. He tells her he'll just come right back through. After all, he said himself the world was full of Travelers. But that fight is for another time, so he crosses over. Next comes Elena and Stefan. Bonnie warns them to come back as fast as they can. As if they were planning to stop for ice cream.

On the Other Side, Elena is reunited with Alaric. He urges her to move quickly. Damon has vanished, and she says she needs to find him. Alaric reminds her about Jeremy and assures her that he'll find Damon.

It takes Damon a little longer to get his bearings. When he comes to, he sees Liz who appears to be the lone survivor of the explosion. He and Alaric enjoy some quick banter and head off to find Bonnie.

Liv is struggling, and her nose is bleeding. Luke tells Bonnie this is too much for his sister, and they have to go now. Stefan, who has shown up with Lexie, insists they all go together. Luke says he doesn't care and crosses back over. He tells his sister she can stop now, but Liv refuses to stop, saying she promised she'd help them. Enzo and Damon return next. Caroline is waiting, and after a brusque hug, Tyler says he feels different. It turns out, he's no longer a hybrid.

Still lingering are Stefan, Lexie and Elena. Both Stefan and Elena refuse to leave without Damon, but Bonnie grabs her bestie and flings her through. Bonnie starts to cough and becomes unsteady. Always the gentleman, Stefan tries to lend her a hand and accidentally leaves the Other Side, Lexie and his brother.

Lexie realizes the process is killing Bonnie, but Bonnie swears she can hold on. Markos reappears and gets into a fight with Lexie who sends his ass hurdling into the stratosphere.

Bonnie tells Lexie it's her turn, but the vampire refuses. She questions what kind of best friend she would be if she went before Stefan got his brother back.

Liv is looking rough, and Luke has had enough. Damon and Alaric show up, and Lexie's nowhere to be found. I'm guessing she found peace. Bonnie pushes Alaric through. But then, Luke breaks the spell. This leaves Damon stranded.

Long Distance Relationship

Luke and Liv disappear, not that their presence would matter. This whole plan relied on timing. Bonnie breaks it to a distraught Elena so that she can say goodbye. She can't see or hear him, but she begs him not to leave her. Damon says a bunch of sweet stuff about how lucky he was to be loved by the great Elena Gilbert. It kind of rings shallow because you know he's coming back at some point (unless Ian's pulling a Claire Holt).

The Best Laid Plans

Stefan is super bummed as well, since he lost his best friend all over again and his brother.

Bonnie finally admits the truth to Jeremy over the phone. She says she died the day before high school graduation, and the rest has been a gift. She also tells him to take care of his sister. Determined to see her, Jeremy hauls ass to the woods to join the others.

Damon and Bonnie, never close in life, find comfort in each other in their final moments. As they are swallowed in light and wind, Bonnie asks her companion if he thinks it will hurt. His final words are "I don't know."

Grams had something up her sleeve, we're all just going to have to wait until next fall to find out what is was. 

(Image courtesy of CW)