|“|| Elena: I want my memories back.|
Caroline: Wait, what?
Elena: I've made up my mind. If Damon survives this, then.. I want Alaric to uncompel me. I mean, I can't imagine ever loving him, but I also can't.. ignore the parts that I don't like, just to avoid the truth. I mean, how will I make any decisions.. if I only know half the story..
A RESCUE IN THE NIGHT — When Alaric realizes that Jo can’t be compelled, he asks Elena to do some digging into her background. After learning that Enzo has been captured by Tripp, Caroline teams up with Matt and Stefan to rescue him before Tripp learns of their true identities. Armed with some new information about her past, Sarah breaks into Tripp’s office and is surprised when she finds Matt there, doing some investigating of his own. Meanwhile, Elena is forced to deal with the consequences of her actions, and Jeremy hits rock bottom, lashing out in a destructive way. Lastly, Damon is determined to take matters into his own hands when he receives some upsetting news.
|The episode starts with Ivy locked up in Tripp's car. She asks him to let her go as he is driving towards Mystic Falls. He tells her 'she wouldn't want this life' and drives her and other vampires through, killing them. While Damon reunites with Stefan. He tells her he needs to go see Elena, Stefan tells him about the compulsion but he believes she might remember him.
Elena finds out that Damon is back and Alaric tries to persuade her to ask him to give her the memories back. She refuses. He agrees and tells her he'll wait until she asks him herself. He also tells her to find out about Jo and why she can't be compelled. Meanwhile, Sarah gets irritated at Jeremy because he won't tell her more about Zach and asks him what else he knows. Jeremy refuses to tell her, upset that Damon is back and not Bonnie.
Matt gives Enzo blood while Enzo tells him he'll need more when he helps him get out, Matt says he won't and so Enzo threatens to expose Caroline, Elena, Stefan and all the vampires he knows. Tripp walks in and tells Enzo he has a last chance to give up the names of all the vampires he knows before he drives him through Mystic Falls. Matt tells Caroline and Alaric about Enzo getting caught. She's angry that he didn't tell her before but he says he was confused about who was 'good' and bad. Stefan comes in and tells them he was the one who handed Enzo in.
Damon comes to see Elena but she refuses to open her door saying her feelings for him are gone. He stands outside the door and feels upset. He tells her to open the door because he needs to see her or he'll kick it in. She opens the door but then runs away through the window before he can see her.
Elena's at the hospital and sees Jo put her coffee to the side and walk away. Elena takes the time to open it up and see if it's vervained but surprisingly it isn't. Jo tells Elena to come with her to and tells her about the girl at the party who suffered from fatal injuries during the car accident but survived (the one Elena saved). She asks Elena how she saved her without equipment or training. Elena says the injuries probably weren't that bad and that people are probably exaggerating. Jo tells her she knows her and Alaric are vampires. Meanwhile Damon asks Alaric to undo the compulsion but he refuses.
Caroline and Stefan go to search for Enzo while she tells him that it was careless of him to turn Enzo in. Stefan says he was a threat to other vampires but she says what he did was no less of a threat if he turns them in. Two guys come out of a hut behind them and they hide. They go in after they leave but Enzo's not there.
Damon goes to Bonnie and Elena's room and is upset that she has no photos of him. He goes to Bonnie's side and sends her a voicemail telling her he misses her. Jeremy comes and asks him why Bonnie didn't come but he says she wasn't there and that she 'found peace'.
Elena asks Jo how she's so calm. She says only witches can resist compulsion without vervain. Jo says she'll keep quiet as long as Elena does - they both agree.
Matt is in Tripp's office trying to find clues but he fails. Sarah walks in and asks him what he's doing there. He asks her and she says she wants to know about her parents and the 'animal attacks'. He tells her where the files are to stop her telling Tripp about him. She opens a locked drawer to find phones. She picks one up and a picture of Ivy is at the front. Matt, on the phone with Caroline, takes the phone and sees that Caroline's number, name and picture are at the top of the phone call list and tells her.
Elena calls Damon and tells him that she wants to see him. He gets up and the door opens, he turns to see Tripp, who shoots a vervain dart at him. He catches it and throws it at him - hitting his knee. He is about to kill him when two other guys come in and capture him. Elena walks in the room to see blood and a phone on the floor and gets tensed. She calls Alaric who tells her he'll get him back and to not worry. Jo comes to Alaric and tells her about the compulsion etc. Alaric says its a bad time but she continues and he lashes out saying his best friend is about to die again and he has to save him.
Elena and Caroline have set up their car on one of the 2 routes to Mystic Falls to stop Tripp's car from driving in. Caroline punctures the tire. Elena says she wants her memories back. Stefan and Alaric have blocked the other route with their car too. Stefan starts to break everything apart in the engine to stop it working in anger. Alaric says it's okay because he gave up to. They see the car coming and Alaric waves to stop it. He goes up to Tripp and asks him to give him a lift. Tripp refuses but Alaric punches through the window as Tripp begins to drive towards Mystical Falls over the border. Stefan, in the car, watches as the car skids past his car and flips, just past the border. Alaric, Enzo and Damon start dying because of the Magic Purification Spell.
Elena calls Stefan who tells her that they've crossed the border. He drops the phone and walks in to help them. He also starts bleeding (from the wound he originally died with) but manages to get to them. Damon asks him to help Enzo first. He does and rescues both of them and they all, except Alaric, get across the border while Tripp runs away.
Alaric is dying but Jo comes to help - she says she followed him. He asks her to move him across the border but she says he'll die if she moves him. She tries to stop the bleeding and get his heart to start. He dies from the bleeding while Stefan watches. However, his heart starts again and he wakes up, saying 'something's wrong, I should be dead'. He's no longer a vampire so she takes him to the hospital.
Caroline gets off the phone with Stefan. Elena asks her what happened and she says that Alaric was across the border. Elena gets worried but Caroline says that he was saved. She's relieved until Caroline tells her that Alaric is no longer a vampire because Jo brought him back to life. Elena's left upset.
Matt reveals to Sarah that the house belongs to Stefan and Damon Salvatore, two vampires. He says 'wherever they go, death and pain always follow'. He says if she's looking for family, it's not here. They then find Jeremy trying to cancel Bonnie's phone, he rages after not being able to remember the pin so Matt tries to calm him down.
Elena phones Alaric. He tells her he's happy to be human and apologizes to Elena. She says its okay because she had the chance to get her memories back. She says she'll have to live with herself now.
Damon talks to Stefan and tells her that he's going to see Elena. He gets angry when Stefan tells him that it was too hard for her because he felt the same. He says he won't let her be happy and leaves.
Stefan sees Caroline and goes up to her to say sorry. She stops him. He tells her he wants to be friends again but she says she doesn't want to be friends and walks away.
Damon knocks on Elena's door. Her hands shake as she's about to open the door but opens it. They both stand face-to-face.
Special Guest Star
- Antagonist: Tripp Cooke.
- With its nine words (31 letters total), this episode has the longest title so far in the series.
- The title may refer to Damon's return and Elena ignoring him.
- Ivy is killed by Tripp by driving her over the Mystic Falls border.
- Stefan and Damon decide to tell everyone that Bonnie wasn't with Damon.
- Damon lies to Jeremy that Bonnie found peace, since he was under the impression that Kai killed her in the prison world and believed it would be easier for him to hear.
- Damon calls Bonnie's phone to hear voice as he wanted to hear her voice as he realized he missed hearing it.
- Jo informs Elena that she knows that Elena and Alaric are vampires. She also tells Elena if there are any more blood bags missing she'll know who to come to about it.
- Elena figures out that Jo is a witch after determining she wasn't on vervain and yet still couldn't be compelled.
- Enzo threatens to expose the Mystic Falls Gang vampires to Tripp (which includes Stefan, Elena, and Caroline) when Matt comes to visit him at Tripp's cabin, since it was Stefan who handed him over to him in the first place.
- Matt finds out that Tripp's next target was Caroline after he had found Caroline's number in Ivy's phone.
- Tripp and his hunters go to Bonnie, Caroline, and Elena's dorm room, but instead of finding Caroline, they come upon Damon and capture him.
- After refusing to have Alaric restore her memories all day, Elena finally talks to Caroline and realizes that she wants her memories back after all, because she knows she can't make informed decisions without knowing everything about her life. This seemed to relieve Caroline quite a bit, until it was revealed that Alaric had been turned back into a human and had thus lost his ability to restore her memories after all.
- Damon, Enzo, Alaric and Stefan cross the Mystic Falls border while the latter two were trying to rescue the former two from Tripp's van, where they were chained in the back.
- Alaric was pulled over the anti-magic barrier when he tried to wrestle control of the wheel away from Tripp, who wouldn't let go of him.
- After Stefan saw that the three of them had crossed the border, he rushed over it as well in order to save them, causing the gunshot wound that killed him in 1864 to appear on his chest. However, though he was able to save Enzo and Damon, they were all too weak from the anti-magic spell to save Alaric, who was too weak to get up and save himself.
- Tripp escapes injured while Stefan is busy freeing Damon and Enzo from his van.
- It is revealed that Enzo died of consumption as a human.
- We see that being within the anti-magic border prevents vampires from accessing their powers, such as heightened speed and strength, since Stefan wasn't able to vamp-speed over to the van that held Damon and Enzo, and had to use a crowbar to break them free. All three vampires also had to limp their way back beyond the border threshold in order for their vampirism to return and allow them to recover from the effects of the spell.
- Jo saves Alaric from dying at just the right moment with hemostatic gauze after he was thrown over the Mystic Falls border and nearly died from the stab wound that originally killed him and turned him into an Enhanced Original vampire. However, though Jo was able to save him from death by exsanguination, his vampirism was totally stripped away, returning him back to his previously human state.
- Matt informs Sarah that her ancestors, Damon Salvatore and Stefan Salvatore, are vampires.
- After Stefan tries to make amends with Caroline after the return of his brother, Caroline becomes upset and tells Stefan that she doesn't want to be friends with him anymore.
- After avoiding Damon the whole day, Elena finally decides to meet Damon. Before he arrives, she starts going through the box of packed memories of her relationship with Damon.
- It is established that a vampire can survive after having their vampirism stripped away by the magic purification spell, though this is dependent on several factors such as timing, whether the wound that originally killed them is 100% fatal or not, and whether or not they can get medical attention in time.
- However, Jo explains in Do You Remember the First Time? that Alaric being turned back into a human was a very rare confluence of events that could likely not be replicated a second time.
- This is the only time Katherine Pierce has not appeared in the sixth episode of a season, as she made her first appearance in the sixth episode of season one, and appeared in every sixth episode until this point in time.
- Ivy and two other vampires - forced to cross the anti-magic barrier into Mystic Falls and had their vampirism stripped away, killed by Tripp Cooke
- McKinley, Virginia
- Mystic Falls, Virginia
- Jeremy, Matt and Enzo were last seen in Black Hole Sun.
- Enzo was freed from Tripp's captivity in this episode. Tripp captured in Enzo in Welcome to Paradise with help from Stefan who was hoping Tripp would kill him.
- This is the last appearance of Ivy.
- This is the first episode not to feature Bonnie since I'll Remember, but she's mentioned by several characters.
- Damon has his first interaction with Stefan since Promised Land and his first with Elena since Home as well as Alaric.
- Alaric becomes the third vampire to be made human again and the second to do so without the cure.
Behind the Scenes
- This episode had 1.59 million viewers in the USA, 0.01 million more than the previous episode.
- Hashtag during the airing is #WelcomeBackDamon
- "The More You Ignore Me, the Closer I Get" is a song by Morrissey, released on his 1994 album Vauxhall and I.
- Damon mentions Kurt Cobain, singer from Nirvana.
- Damon: "I'm back!"
- Elena: "He’s back?!"
- Tripp: "Draw up the location of your vampire friends, or you and I are going to go sightseeing in Mystic Falls."
- Alaric: "How the hell are ya?"
- Damon: "My best friend compelled my beautiful and lovely girlfriend to forget that she ever loved me. I’m great, Ric."
- Alaric: "We need to know who the next target is."
- Damon: "Enzo?"
- Damon: "I came back for this?"
- Damon: "Our eyes will meet, fireworks will go off and the balance of nature will be restored."