AN EXPLOSIVE SEASON FINALE — Heartbroken by an unexpected tragedy, Damon is focused on holding himself together, while pushing Bonnie harder than ever to find a way to stop the disintegration of the Other Side. Elena takes matters into her own hands and demands that Liv and Luke help her, but Liv refuses to cooperate until Caroline provides her with some personal motivation. Sheriff Forbes is horrified when Markos uses violence against Tyler/Julian to prove that Mystic Falls is now under the control of the Travelers. With new information from Sheriff Forbes, Damon comes up with a dangerous plan that relies on split-second timing from Jeremy and Matt. Liv's off-hand remark regarding Stefan gets a surprisingly emotional response from Caroline. As conditions on the Other Side worsen, Bonnie takes the opportunity to settle an old score. Finally, Damon’s plan causes a massive explosion in Mystic Falls, and everyone is caught up in the confusion, leaving a trail of heroism, sacrifice, relief and despair.
The episode starts with Caroline crying over Stefan's dead body at the Whitmore dorm, while Damon and Elena arrive. Stefan watches them from the other side while he starts to be pulled from existence, as the other side continues to crumble. He tries to hold on and Lexi appears, saving him.
Damon meets Bonnie and is furious when he learns that they lost the only traveler who could help them with the spell, and he tells her to find another way because his brother is on the Other Side, along with other people they all care about, such as Alaric, and her grandmother, Sheila. Enzo appears with a new plan, which requires a witch.
Liv and Luke try to get as far away as they can to save themselves, however Elena appears in the middle of the road forcing Luke to stop the car, while Caroline stands behind the car. They get out and Elena informs them that Stefan is dead, and the spell has stopped, however they need their help to bring him back. Liv says that it is better that one of the doppelgängers is dead so they can all live, and Elena explains that if they bring Stefan back, they will kill the travelers. Liv still doesn't want to help, so Caroline snaps Luke's neck, sending him to the other side. Liv, not having any other choice, agrees to help them. In the meantime, Enzo takes Bonnie to meet the traveler (Silas) who will teach them the spell, but he will only help if they will bring him back to life as too.
Back in Mystic Falls, Liz helps to evacuate the town while Markos is observing. He explains that he isn't afraid of Damon or Stefan coming to save the town, simply because they can't cross the line where the spell starts. To prove his point, he uses Julian (Tyler), to show her what will happen to any supernatural creature if they try to enter the town. They push Julian into the spell's limits and he first loses his werewolf nature, then the vampire one and returns to the last state he was as human, dead. Tyler's spirit appears to Bonnie and passes through her to the Other Side, not before she tells him that they can bring him back.
Damon explains that for his plan to bring everybody's loved ones back, they will have to kill many travelers so they can pass through Bonnie and their friends can pass through her to come back, like Markos did. Liz will have to gather all the travelers at one place. Matt and Jeremy will cause a gas leak, head out of the town and then somehow they'll explode the place where the travelers are gathered. At the same time, Liv will start the resurrection spell. Jeremy worries about what will happen to Bonnie when everything is in motion, but Bonnie reassures him that everything will be fine.
In the meantime, Stefan and Lexi go to the Grill and catch up on news. She points out to him about Caroline and how she feels about him, but Stefan insists they are friends. Liz and Markos walk into the Grill and hear them talking. Stefan realizes that Liz is trying to gather the travelers in one place and figures out that his friends are planning something.
Damon tells Elena the last part of the plan where someone has to trigger the explosion and that it will be him. Elena tries to talk him out of it because it's a suicide mission, but Damon asks her to respect his choice and promises that he will be back with the others from the Other Side.
Jeremy and Matt navigate the caves under the city, trying to find the gas line. Liz successfully gathered the travelers at the Grill and tries to find a way to leave before Markos figures out that something is going on. Markos suspects something, so Liz stays for a drink to convince him nothing is happening. Matt and Jeremy find the gas line, break it to cause the leak and they leave.
Bonnie waits for Grams so she can tell her to come back with the others. Grams appears to tell her that she doesn't want to go back because she found her peace knowing that she helped Bonnie to find hers and that she is not the only one to know how to sacrifice herself for others. The two of them say goodbye and Grams leaves.
At 7pm, Liv starts chanting the spell while her brother watches from the other side, encouraging her. Liz is still at the Grill with Markos, who doesn't let her go. Knowing that she has to leave so the plan can be completed, she pretends to smell gas and she leads Markos to the storage room to investigate. When he turns his back to her to check where the leak comes from, she hits him and messages Damon to start. Markos gets up and stops her before she leaves.
Damon is right outside the city limits where the spell starts when he receives Liz's text. He gets into the car to drive to the city, when Elena joins him and tells him that she will go with him. Damon tries to talk her out of it, but Elena has made her choice and she asks him to respect it as she respected his. They take off and they manage to crash into the Grill while they are still vampires and the building explodes. Dozens of travelers approach Bonnie to pass through her to the other side, including Markos.
Elena and Damon find Bonnie, who tells them to pass through her to the Other Side, find their bodies and come back as fast as they can. Elena finds her body, in addition to Alaric, who warns her to rush back to Bonnie because her brother needs her, and he will find Damon. Damon tries to help a trapped Liz at The Grill, where Alaric finds him and helps. The others (Stefan, Tyler, Enzo and Lexi) start to gather next to Bonnie ready to get out of the other side.
Meanwhile, Liv keeps chanting and Luke notices that the spell is too much for her and is hurting her. He rushes to Bonnie where everyone is gathered and tells her that they have to do it now because Liv is in danger. Stefan says that not everyone is still there but Luke touches Bonnie and passes through. He runs to Liv and asks her to stop the spell but she says that she promised to help them, so she continues.
Enzo doesn't want to wait any longer, so he also touches Bonnie to come back to life, and Tyler follows him. He sees Caroline waiting and he hugs her but he notices he feels different. He cuts himself and he realizes that he is not healing, meaning that he is no longer a hybrid. Bonnie tries to convince Lexi and Stefan to pass before it's too late but they want to wait for Damon, Elena and Alaric. Elena arrives but she doesn't want to go without Damon so Bonnie touches her forcing her through. Bonnie can't hold on for long and she falls, with Stefan catching her; and he passes through.
Bonnie tells Lexi to pass too, but she refuses, seeing that Bonnie gets weaker with every passing soul. She says that she prefers to wait so her best friend gets his brother back before she passes. Markos shows up and tries to pass through Bonnie but Lexi holds him back long enough for the oblivion to suck him away. Lexi realizes Bonnie is dying in the process and gave up her place for Damon so Stefan gets a chance to have his brother back, thus also lets herself find peace and left before the oblivion gets her.
Damon and Alaric arrive and Alaric goes through first. Damon asks where Elena is and Bonnie assures him she is safe. At the same time, Luke can't let his sister die and he chants a spell making her stop. Damon tries to pass through Bonnie after the spell has stopped so it no longer works, leaving him trapped in the other side. Elena tries desperately to find Liv so she can start the spell again, but Bonnie tells her that it's too late and Elena collapses. Damon is watching and Bonnie leaves them alone to say their goodbyes.
Bonnie calls Jeremy to tell him that there was never a way for her to come back and to also say goodbye. Jeremy runs to find her while Alaric finds Elena crying over Damon and hugs her. They hear Jeremy screaming for Bonnie and they try to get to him. Stefan sits with Caroline and is devastated after losing both Lexi and Damon. He knows Lexi must be the reason Markos didn't make it back and says that Damon is gone now that he had everything and was happy. Caroline stays with him to comfort him.
The episode ends with Bonnie and Damon holding hands waiting for the oblivion to suck them.
Elena died during the explosion at the Mystic Grill. This is the second time in which Elena has died in a season finale and has been resurrected in the same episode, the first being The Departed of Season Three. Both occurring with Elena being in the passenger side of a car.
Luke died when Caroline snapped his neck to use his death as leverage to force her to cast the resurrection spell to bring him and the rest of the deceased Mystic Falls Gang members back before the Other Side is destroyed.
As a result of Tyler/Julian being pushed into the Magic Purification Spell barrier, Tyler was cured of his vampirism and had his activated lycanthropy stripped away, making him no longer a hybrid. As a result, when he was resurrected by Liv's spell, he came back as an untriggered werewolf. This is the first time Tyler has been "human" again since Season Three/2010.
Since Tyler is no longer a hybrid, this leaves Klaus and Hayley as the only undead werewolf-vampire hybrids in the TVD/TO universe. Their daughter Hope is also a hybrid, but unlike them, she is alive and a pureblood due to the fact that she was born with werewolf, vampire and witch heritage.
With one word (and four letters), this episode, along with Rose, has the shortest titles of all the series so far.
With Alaric's resurrection, he now becomes one of the most powerful vampire characters, as there is no longer any known way to kill him. Before he died, his life was tied to Elena's, but now that Elena is technically dead, this is no longer a weakness for him.
We learn the population of Mystic Falls is 6,923 people, meaning it's a really small town.
When Elena learns that Damon is going to trigger the explosion, she asks him if he sees a future with her and she tells Damon that's all she can see with him. Damon tells her that's all he has seen since the first time he laid eyes on her (May 23, 2009).
Both the Mystic Grill and Damon's 1969 Chevy Camaro are destroyed in this episode.
Sheriff Liz Forbes is the only one to survive the gas explosion at the Grill, while Markos and the Travelers do not. Ironically, she used a fake gas leak to evacuate the town, possibly using the deaths in the Town Square in Promised Land as a cover.
Interestingly enough, this gas leak story was used once again in Season Seven in order for the Mystic Falls Gang to get the citizens out of town for their own protection after Lily Salvatore and the Heretics take control of Mystic Falls.
When Elena is looking at the burnt remains of body and the survival of her daylight ring, Alaric appears and asks Elena if she seriously wore her seat belt on a suicide mission.
Damon's age is established as 173 years old as of late April/early May 2012. However, since Damon's birthday is in June, it is possible that he was simply rounding up. Regardless, this makes Damon's date of birth in either 1838 or 1839.
Caroline helps Stefan deal with Damon's death and the fact that he won't see Lexi anymore, since she found peace by ensuring that Stefan would be allowed to live.
Alaric comforts a grieving Elena, who is barely holding it together in the wake of Damon's death and the revelation that he won't be resurrected like the others.
We hear Damon's pet name for Elena is Baby as he says his goodbye to her, the first time a pet name in any relationship is heard in the series.
Caroline is also the only main character that has only died once. As of this episode, all of the other main characters have died at least twice, with many of them having died upwards of seven times in the case of Alaric and Jeremy.
Despite the mass murder of the Travelers in the Mystic Grill explosion, the anti-magic barrier exists over and around Mystic Falls into Season Six.
At the beginning of the episode, Markos is seen moving the "Welcome to Mystic Falls" sign to where the Magic Purification spell starts, which is the place where Julian killed Stefan and thereby halted the spell in its tracks.
Jeremy mapped the boundries of where the anti-witch magic spell begins based on where his Brotherhood of the Five hunter instinct to kill vampires stops, using his desire to kill Damon as a benchmark.
Lexi meets Bonnie, Tyler and Enzo in this episode.
The Other Side is destroyed in this episode, meaning all supernatural spirits now will end up wherever they did before Qetsiyah created it.
With the other side's destruction this marks the final appearance/extinction of Ghosts.
With the Other Side gone, all the enemies of the main characters are gone.
This is the first time the end title card logo is white, instead of black when the episode ends. This is to match the bright light that is created as the Other Side disintegrates into nothingness.
Lexi and Sheila moved on and found peace in this episode,
Enzo meets Tyler for the first time in this episode after they are resurrected.
There will be a big time jump between this episode and the first episode of Season Six, according to Julie Plec.
This is the final episode of the fourth chapter of Season Five, The Travelers Chapter.
Home is the least viewed season finale of the series thus far.
Bonnie as of this episode has died the most of the main three female characters in the series with four total deaths.
This episode marks Enzo's final appearance as a recurring character before being upgraded to a series regular in Season Six.
To date, Caroline now has the most kills compared to both Tyler (hybrid) and Elena (vampire) after each was turned since she killed Luke in this episode. She has a total of sixteen kills to date, even though Luke was resurrected. This includes her first kill, Carter the carny, in Brave New World; two of Liz's deputies in Kill or Be Killed, and Aja and her coven of witches.
Sheila: "Do you think I was born yesterday? I know what you're doing. You cannot survive all these people coming through you. Even if you could, when it's all said and done, you're still the Anchor. And when this place goes down.."
Bonnie: "It's more than just knowing the spell. Markos was able to come back because dozens of Travelers were willing to sacrifice themselves in order to overwhelm me. I doubt they'll be willing to do that for a bunch of supernatural strangers."
Damon: "You know who needs motivation? Youneed motivation. Because if the Other Side goes away, everyone we know there, including you, goes away with it."
Bonnie: "I know that. Do you think I want to die?"
Damon: (to Elena) "I don't have a choice, baby. You are, by far, the greatest thing that ever happened to me in my 173 years on this Earth. I get to die knowing I was love. Not just by anyone-- by you, Elena Gilbert. It's the epitome of a fulfilled life. It’s never gonna get any better than this. I peaked."
"No Rest For The Wicked" – Lykke Li "Walking" – Ash Grunwald "Love Is Just A Way To Die" – I Am Strikes "Buried Alive" – Yeah Yeah Yeahs "Finished Sympathy" – Glasvegas "Be Alright" – Lucy Rose "Wings" – Birdy