FLASHBACKS TO NADIA’S SEARCH FOR KATHERINE — While Nadia, remembers her centuries-long search for her mother, Stefan, Caroline and Matt come up with a desperate new plan to save Elena’s life. For the second time, Bonnie and Jeremy must turn to Liv for help. Damon baits Tyler into a nasty confrontation, then takes off to seek revenge on Dr. Wes. Caroline and Tyler come to a new understanding. Finally, Bonnie learns of a terrifying secret that will threaten the lives of all her friends.
Nadia has hallucinations of her past while she was searching for her mother Katherine, after Tyler bit her. Katherine is there for her and tells her that she won't leave her side and that she will find a way to save her life but not by asking Klaus for help. Instead, she calls Wes who takes a sample of the werewolf toxin from Nadia's wound and promises to create an antidote.
Meanwhile, Stefan and Caroline inform everyone that Katherine has taken over Elena's body and they try to find a way to bring Katherine to them before she realizes that she knows. Tyler says that he bit Nadia and they all figure out that Katherine must be with her daughter and that they have to find something that Elena couldn't say no to. Katherine finds excuses for everything, and the persistence of everyone trying to see her makes her figure out that they have figured out her identity. She tests this by calling Damon, who falls into her trap and practically begs her to come over to the Salvatore house, which she realizes he wouldn't do to Elena, as the previous day he tried to kill her. Katherine confirms her suspicions but the phone call also makes Stefan realize that she knows that they know.
Bonnie and Jeremy go to college to find Liv and ask her help. They need her to do a spell to find Katherine's location. Liv agrees to help but her interest on Jeremy makes Bonnie get jealous. Tyler watches over Damon who knows what buttons to push to make him enter the cell. The two of them argue and when Tyler gets close enough, Damon grabs him and feeds on him. Damon gets his strength back, breaks the chains and escapes. Damon heads to find Wes to ask him for the antidote of the ripper virus, but Wes refuses to help him, leading Damon to kill him. Meanwhile, Katherine takes Nadia to a church to keep her safe while waiting for Wes, but because Wes is taking a long time with the cure, Katherine leaves to find him. When she gets to his laboratory, she finds him dead.
Stefan calls Katherine revealing her that they know and tells her that they have Nadia at the Salvatore house and if she wants she can run away to survive or come and see her daughter for a last time. Katherine chooses the latter and shows up at the Salvatore house. Everyone is there and they let her in with Nadia to say goodbye. Katherine apologizes to Nadia, tells her that she loves her and Nadia dies happy. Katherine stands and tries to get away but Damon is blocking the door. She seems to accept that there is no way out this time and she asks who has the Traveler Knife to stab her. She says goodbye to everyone in her own way leaving Stefan last. She kisses him and Stefan stabs her. Katherine collapses and leaves Elena's body.
Stefan and Damon watch over Elena waiting for her to wake up. Meanwhile Caroline and Tyler discuss her sleeping with Klaus. Caroline is frustrated with Tyler's constant remarks about the incident and asks him to get over it or otherwise get out of her life. Matt takes Nadia's body to bury it despite Stefan's suggestion to throw her in a ditch.
Bonnie is praying to her father at a church when Katherine appears, ready to cross over to the Other Side via Bonnie. Before she does, she takes the time to reveal to Bonnie that she had already accepted her death sentence before showing up at the Salvatore house, but that didn't mean she would cooperate. When Katherine went to Wes' laboratory earlier, she found out that Wes never intended to help Nadia. He had instead extracted werewolf venom from Nadia's wound and used it to enhance the ripper virus. Katherine then injected herself with the virus so that when Elena wakes up, she will be doubly infected.
The episode ends with Elena waking up to resume her life while Katherine prepares to embark into the afterlife. However when Katherine touches Bonnie nothing happens. She asks Bonnie what is happening but Bonnie doesn't know. A wind whips up in the church, the doors open and a dark abyss appears. Bonnie says to Katherine that it's not her decision to let her pass to the Other Side or not and that she can't help her. Katherine is dragged, screaming, into the darkness.
- Antagonists: Katherine Pierce and Wes Maxfield.
- This episode marks the return of Elena.
- Both Katherine and Nadia Petrova die in this episode.
- Katherine is the seventh main character to die in the series, followed by Vicki, Jenna, Alaric (resurrected), Jeremy (resurrected), Bonnie (resurrected) and Silas.
- Katherine dies in this episode, making her the third character whose name is also an episode title to die, after Rose and Isobel.
- Katherine wears her daylight bracelet for the first time since getting permanent control over Elena's body in The Devil Inside. This after figuring out that Elena's friends now know that she's possessing Elena.
- Katherine tells Matt that he's the best night she never had, confirming she's never had sex with Matt, even when he was under her control in Plan B or The Devil Inside.
- Katherine's speech to Damon is similar to Elena's to Damon in Graduation in tone.
- Katherine is the first character denied passage to the Other Side. However, she's the second character not crossing over to the Other Side, after Jenna who found peace immediately after her death.
- It's revealed in An Eternity of Misery that she was sent to hell.
- It was seen for the first time since the second season that a vampire can actually die from a werewolf/hybrid bite. Until this point, every vampire who has been exposed to werewolf venom has either been cured with Klaus' blood or has been mercy-killed before they could die from the venom itself as a result of their uncontrollable and insatiable bloodlust.
- This episode takes place a week before Bonnie's birthday, meaning this takes place in mid-to-late February 2012.
- Elena, for the second time this season, has the least amount of screen time. The first episode was The Devil Inside.
- This is the second episode this season to feature all eight main cast members in one scene. The first episode was 500 Years of Solitude.
- This is the fourth episode this season to feature eight cast members. The other three are: For Whom the Bell Tolls, 500 Years of Solitude and Total Eclipse of the Heart.
- Damon tortures and kills Wes in retribution for making him an Augustine Vampire.
- This is the final episode of the third chapter of Season Five, The Passenger Chapter.
- Wes - torn to pieces, killed by Damon.
- Nadia - werewolf bite, bitten by Tyler.
- Katherine Pierce (in Elena's body) - stabbed by the Traveler's knife, killed by Stefan.
- Enzo was mentioned by Stefan, Jeremy and Damon. He was last seen in No Exit.
- Klaus was mentioned several times in this episode. He was last seen in 500 Years of Solitude in TVD and Le Grand Guignol on TO, at the time of this episodes airing.
- According to a clip from the episode it has been weeks since Katherine took over Elena's body, indicating there was a time jump of several weeks between The Devil Inside and No Exit.
- Jeremy, Bonnie and Liv were last seen in Total Eclipse of the Heart.
- We learn that Elena (i.e. Katherine) picked out the dress Caroline wore to the Bitter Ball.
- Nadia is the first vampire to die due to the werewolf bite in the series. (Damon staked Rose and ripped out Will's heart to end their suffering before the bite actually killed them.)
- Before Nadia dies, Katherine shows her what her perfect day should've been using the form of telepathy vampires possess. This is what Damon did for Rose in The Descent before he mercy-killed her, and what Stefan did for Katherine herself in 500 Years of Solitude.
- This episode shares some similarities to Season Two's The Descent.
- Nadia is dying from a werewolf/hybrid bite as did Rose.
- Katherine is willing to do whatever it takes to save her daughter just as Damon looked desperately for a cure to Rose's bite.
- Both Nadia and Rose died with a person they loved by their side.
- This is the first time in the series that Tyler is featured in the 15th episode of a season. It's also the first time since the second season that Tyler's character has not left town for an extended period during the 13th and 14th episodes.
- Elena Gilbert returned to her body in this episode. She was last seen in The Devil Inside.
- As of this episode, Elena becomes the last surviving member of the Petrova Family after Katherine and Nadia die in this episode.
- Katherine was last seen in her own body in 500 Years of Solitude.
- Tyler's family were mentioned by Damon. Richard was killed in Founder's Day, Mason was killed by Damon in Plan B, and Carol was killed by Klaus in O Come, All Ye Faithful.
- Stefan mentions Damon and Enzo's murder spree:
- Bonnie is the first character to actually mention that Elena and Jeremy are technically (first) cousins and not biologically brother and sister when she tells this to Liv Parker when she is doing the locator spell.
- House in Northern Europe (flashback)
- Mystic Falls, Virginia
- McKinley, Virginia
- Whitmore College
- College Dormroom
- Whitmore College
Behind the Scenes
- There was a two-week break after this episode.
- This episode had about 2.19 million viewers in the USA, which was 0.16 million more than the previous episode.
- The church set seen in this episode is a reuse of the St. Anne's Church set seen in The Originals.
- Hashtag during the airing is #KatsOutOfTheBag
- Gone Girl is the name of a 2012 novel by author Gillian Flynn which has been made into a film in 2014.
- Gone Girl is also the name of a 1978 album by American singer Johnny Cash.
- Gone Girl is the title of songs performed by the following artists - Payton Rae, Mud Acres, Jennifer Delano, Jack Clement, Tompall Glasser, Jack Jersey, Billy Joe Trio, The Brothers Glaser, The Pet Band, Maurice Davis, Hans Theessink, Erin Sax, Zachart Cale, Atrey, Golab & The Renegades, Tracstarz, David Ferguson and Boundry Road. These cover a variety of genres and styles.
- Nadia: "I'm lookng for someone. Her name is Katerina Petrova. She was last seen outside of London in 1492. She's on the run. I need to find her... I need to ask her why she abandoned me."
- Nadia: "Money for information. I was told you saw Katerina Petrova kill a man in cold blood outside the Court of Versailles. I want to know if that is true. I want to know what kind of person my mother is."
- Nadia: "If they know who you really are, they will come for you."
- Stefan: "Katherine has been inhabiting Elena's body."
- Katherine: "They know."
- Damon: "She's brilliant."
- Stefan: "All we have to do is stab her with the Traveler knife."
- Caroline: "We gotta get her to come to us, get her guard down."
- Katherine: "So which one of you is gonna get to kill the elusive Katherine Pierce?"
- Caroline: "Katherine is a Passenger in Elena, except it's worse because none of us seemed to notice."
- Tyler: "She was at my house. How did none of us figure it out?"
- Caroline: "Because it's Katherine, and she's smart and conniving and sneaky... And we're the worst friends ever."
- Jeremy: "This makes no sense. She saved my life. She gave me CPR when Enzo tried to kill me. Katherine would never do that."
- Bonnie: "That's what made her so believable. She played Elena to a T. If she let you die, her cover was blown."
- Caroline: "I was sleeping three feet away from her. She picked out my Bitter Ball dress, and I let her use my toothpaste."
- Stefan: "Yeah, well, did she lure you into a hotel room to make out with you? "
- Damon: "She's brilliant."
- Stefan: "We haven't noticed that Katherine has been inhabiting Elena's body for weeks, and that's all you have to say?"
- Damon: "Yep."
- Stefan: "And you realize that it was Katherine who broke up with you. It wasn't, uh, Elena."
- Damon: "Mm-hmm."
- Stefan: "Right. So, your little murder spree with Enzo where you, uh, killed Aaron, you nearly killed Jeremy, you tried to kill Wes, but you got infected by that Ripper virus... That was all you reacting to Katherine."
- Damon: "I'm trying to figure out why you decided to tell a starving, bloodthirsty, vampire-feeding Ripper that his nemesis is still walking around alive and well, while I'm stuck in this cell and can't do anything about it."
- Stefan: "I have it under control."
- Damon: "I'd love to hear this."
- Damon: (to Wes) "It's my turn to play doctor."
- Katherine: "Okay. So... who's got the knife? Which one of you is gonna get to kill the elusive Katherine Pierce once and for all?"
- Katherine: (to Bonnie) "I left Elena with a bit of a parting gift. If I can't have Stefan, then no one can. Okay. Now I'm ready."