The CW's The Vampire Diaries did most of its blood shedding last week, killing off four characters, including poor Aunt Jenna (Sara Canning, who will be missed), an original series regular. So what was left for the season finale, "As I Lay Dying," last night? Instead of massive amounts of death, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) slowly grows weaker as the poison of the werewolf bite consumes him. His brother, Stefan (Paul Wesley), goes to evil original vampire/werewolf hybrid Klaus (Joseph Morgan), quite likely the most dangerous being on the planet, as Klaus's blood is the only thing that can cure Damon. But Klaus will only hand it over if Stefan gives up the restraint he has carefully constructed and go wild evil himself. It's a tough decision. Can Stefan save his brother knowing that the consequence may be Stefan will not be able to stop killing innocent humans?
Long have viewers heard of the "evil" Stefan, who is a ruthless hunter, ripping out scores of throats of hapless victims. Never has he been seen. Klaus begins activating him by forcing Stefan to chug blood bag after blood bag, sparking the lust and powerful instincts within him. There is no telling if Stefan can come back from this. He has before, but it is unknown how. It is easy to believe Stefan is just playing along at first, knowing his limits. But to save Damon's life, Stefan may have passed what he can handle.
At first, it is easy to believe that Stefan is just playing along with Klaus's game. He has to drink, or Klaus would stop humoring him completely But at some point, it must become more than Stefan can handle. How else to explain Stefan chasing down and killing an innocent human woman at the end of the episode? This is not a price the Stefan featured these past two seasons would deem acceptable. Yes, it is his brother's life on the line. But Stefan has always been a pacifist who would find another way. This is a sure sign that the blood has taken over, and a different Stefan has emerged.