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MISSING PERSONS — Without telling Elena that Stefan is missing, Damon turns to Sheriff Forbes for help finding his brother. Elena and Caroline try to find out who is covering up a campus murder, and a fellow Whitmore student named Jesse gives Elena some intriguing information about Professor Wes Maxfield. While Jeremy struggles to return to his old life, he continues to be the only person who can see and talk to Bonnie, but he can’t convince her that it’s time to let the others know that she sacrificed her own life for his. After learning that Silas is searching for Katherine, Damon asks Matt and Jeremy to keep her out of sight, but the situation quickly spirals out of control. Finally, Nadia uses violence to make a point about her own agenda.
Bonnie tells Jeremy that Silas killed her father in front of everyone at the 'End of Summer' party and that the whole town is under the influence of Silas to find Katherine. Katherine is then seen walking out of the woods onto a main road. A woman driving sees her and pulls over. The woman (under Silas' influence) maces Katherine and is about to call Silas but Katherine knocks her out. Matt and Jeremy then spot her before she is able to run away and they capture her to prevent Silas from finding her.
Elena and Caroline are in their dorm room. Elena informs Caroline that she has switched their 'Intro to Communications' class for 'Microbiology', a course taught by Wes Maxfield, the man responsible for covering up Megan's actual cause of death. When they enter the classroom, Jesse spots them and tries to make conversation but Caroline rebuffs him. When Elena and Caroline are seen whispering in the back, Wes Maxfield calls the two girls out in front of the class. When it is apparent that they don't belong in the advanced course, he kicks them out.
Elena is talking on the phone to Damon about it when she sees Silas (who she thinks is Stefan) on campus. Damon tries to tell Elena that it isn't Stefan but she is compelled to hang up by Silas. He tells her that Jeremy has been expelled and tricks her into telling him where Jeremy might be with Katherine. Before he leaves, he compels her to kill Damon.
Matt, Jeremy, and Katherine are now seen pulling into a gas station. While Matt buys cold medicine for Katherine, she goes to the washroom. She tries to escape while Jeremy is fueling up but is spotted by the gas station attendant (who is also under Silas' control) and Matt is forced to knock him out before he can call Silas.
Elena is next seen talking to Jesse at the bonfire where he tells her that Professor Maxfield is rumored to be a member of a secret society on campus. Damon then arrives and knocks out Jesse. Elena takes Damon into her dorm room and forces him to drink the vervain water to weaken him and ties him up so she can kill him. Damon realizes that she is under Silas' influence and tries to convince her to fight it. He tells her everything that has happened with Stefan and Silas. In the meantime, Caroline is taking care of Jesse at the bonfire. After Caroline tells him she has a boyfriend, he confides in her about his cheating girlfriend.
Silas, with Elena's directions, tracks down Jeremy, Matt and Katherine. When Matt goes to get more firewood, Silas tries to perform mind control on him. He quickly realizes that Matt is hosting a traveler in his body and promptly kills him, but not before Matt shouts out to warn Jeremy and Katherine. Jeremy takes Katherine to the truck and tells her to flee while he returns to fight Silas. After Silas stabs Jeremy (by stabbing himself first), Katherine returns and shoots Silas. Meanwhile, Matt is on the Other Side, waiting for the ring to bring him back to life when he sees Bonnie. Bonnie tells him the truth about her being dead and he comforts her when she is afraid to acknowledge her death and her father's. When Matt returns to his body, he doesn't remember anything that happened on the Other Side. When Jeremy spots Bonnie, he runs up to her and she emotionally tells him she doesn't know what to do about her dad, and Jeremy tells her he'll be there for her and will cover for her again by telling everyone that she's gone away with family.
Silas is next seen at the gas station that Jeremy, Matt and Katherine were at hours before. He forces the attendant to feed him and encounters the two travelers who are chasing him. The man tells him that they want to put him back in the tomb, but the woman, Nadia, kills her partner and says that she has her own agenda, which Silas is able to see psychically.
The next day, Elena decides to leave Whitmore for a few days in order to find Stefan. Before she leaves, she has a talk with Professor Maxfield who tells her that he knew her father and that he was a legend in the town. At the end of the episode, Sheriff Forbes takes Damon and Elena to the safe that Stefan is locked in. When they open it however, they find a dead man who appears to have been fed on by a vampire; realizing that Stefan's bloodlust is going to be harder to control than ever.
- Antagonists: Silas, Gregor and Nadia Petrova.
- This episode marks the first appearance of Wes Maxfield.
- Elena mentions that she finds Wes Maxfield attractive.
- Katherine reveals that, prior to this episode, she has never used a gun in her 538 year lifespan, and makes a point of arguing that as a vampire, she was much more deadly on her own. However, fellow vampires Logan Fell, Damon, Elena and Nadia Petrova (the latter seen in Original Sin) have all been shown to use guns when the occasion called for it.
- Katherine saves Jeremy from being killed by Silas by shooting him twice in the chest with a shotgun. When Jeremy points out that she claimed she didn't know how to shoot a gun, Katherine admits that she figured it out.
- This is the only time Katherine will use a gun in her entire run on the series.
- Silas wonders aloud what Elena sees in Damon this episode, echoing sentiments previously stated by Caroline, Stefan, and Klaus, among others. In response, Damon jokes that it is because Silas has never had sex with him.
- When Damon refers to Silas and Stefan as being twins due to Stefan being Silas' doppelgänger, Silas states that Stefan and Damon are more like his very-distant nephews, confirming that Silas is a distant ancestor of the Salvatore Family.
- In a reference to Season Two's main story line, Katherine compares herself to the much-sought-after moonstone.
- Elena sneaks to Whitmore Medical Center and steals Megan's death certificate, and after reading it, she learns that a Dr. Wesley Maxfield was the coroner who ruled her death as a suicide. So, to further investigate him to confirm whether or not he's aware of vampires, Elena compelled herself and Caroline into his Applied Microbiology class to get to know him.
- When explaining this plan to Caroline, Elena references Damon's successful infiltration into the Mystic Falls Founder's Council and insists that they need to do the same if Whitmore has an equivalent.
- It's also revealed that Caroline is majoring in Drama at Whitmore, and that she and Elena were both originally enrolled in Introduction to Communications until Elena re-enrolled them in Applied Microbiology instead.
- Wes Maxfield explains that Whitmore College was originally founded as hospital during the Civil War, and also states that the origin of bonfires came from the need to burn all of the bodies who had died from various injuries and ailments during the war.
- This episode marks the first (indirect) reference to the Augustine Society when Jesse tells Elena more about Wes. Jesse also tells her that it is rumored that Wes attends meetings for a secret society that convenes in Whitmore House on a regular basis.
- Silas uses his psychic abilities to compel Elena to get Damon alone, weaken him with vervain, and kill him in order to get revenge on him for aiding in Katherine's escape. Silas also compels Elena to kill herself in the process, if necessary, which suggests that he may have also told her to kill herself when Damon was dead.
- After Matt was killed by Silas while wearing the Gilbert Ring, his ghost form is transported to the Other Side, where he meets with Bonnie's ghost for the first time since she put the Veil back up in Graduation.
- While there, Bonnie explains how the Gilbert ring works-- every time a human dies while wearing the ring, their spirits go to the Other Side, where they have to reunite with their body in order to return to the world of the living. She also reveals that as the wearer dies more and more often while wearing the ring, their spirits awaken farther and farther away from their bodies, taking them increasingly longer amounts of times to be resurrected by the rings magic. This explains why both Alaric and Jeremy, after being killed while wearing the rings, began staying "dead" for longer and longer periods of time as their total number of deaths increased.
- Bonnie also confesses to Matt that she's dead, making him the first person to know about her death, aside from Jeremy. However, since Matt did not remember being transported to the Other Side the first time he died while wearing the ring, he points out to Bonnie that he won't remember that she's dead when he wakes up. Sure enough, upon reuniting with his body, Matt awakens with no memory whatsoever of being on the Other Side.
- This episode verbally confirms that Silas, as a true immortal, does not have vampire-level strength, speed, or reflexes. In fact, Silas is described by Jeremy as having inferior strength to a Brotherhood of the Five vampire hunter, who not only has enhanced physical abilities, but also has an immunity to vampiric compulsion and an immortal's psychic abilities.
- When Silas was speaking to Matt, he realized that he couldn't read his mind because someone else was already in there. He identified the person possessing him as a Traveler and asked them why he was watching him before shouting, "Odpowiedz mi!" which means "Answer me!" in Polish.
- Coincidentally, Paul Wesley is Polish and can speak the Polish language fluently.
- Wes asks Elena to meet him in his office as he would like to speak her as she's leaving to help find Stefan.
- At the end of the episode, Wes tells Elena that knows of her father's work but didn't know him personally.
- Elena and Damon's kissing scene at the end of this episode was declared the scene of the week in an online poll.
- Reality Check: In the episode Jeremy finds Katherine on "Route 9." In reality, the only Route 9 in Virginia is nowhere near where Mystic Falls is supposed to be located (near Falls Church).
- However, The Vampire Diaries is filmed in Covington, Georgia, near Atlanta, where there is a Route 9.
- Historical Note: Dr. Maxfield mentions the burning of bodies during the American Civil War. This is interesting because cremation was not culturally acceptable in the United States until well after the war had ended. Mass burnings would have been unheard of in the Virginia area at that time.
- Gregor - stabbed, killed by Nadia (though his spirit lives on as a Passenger in Matt Donovan's body)
- Gas Station Attendant - drained of blood, killed by Stefan Salvatore
- This is the first time Elena officially meets Silas (posing as Stefan), though she briefly met Silas in The Walking Dead when he was posing as Caroline at the time.
- Elena mentions the Founder's Council/Town Council to Caroline, specifically explaining how Damon infiltrated the council to protect his secret as a vampire and insisting that they must do the same at Whitmore.
- This is the first episode since We’ll Always Have Bourbon Street to not feature Rebekah.
- Bonnie admits to Matt that she's dead in this episode. Bonnie died of overuse of magic in Graduation.
- For the fourth time in the series, Elena tries to kill a main or recurring character; the first three times were of her own free will, and the fourth was under Silas' mind control. The first was Caroline in Bring It On (Season Four). The second was Bonnie in Pictures of You (Season Four). The third was Katherine in The Walking Dead (Season Four). Finally, the fourth was Damon, in this episode, under Silas' compulsion.
- Klaus was mentioned in this episode. He was last seen in Graduation.
- True Lies is the title of a 1994 movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis and written and directed by James Cameron.
- True Lies is a 1999 album by Dive.
- True Lies is the 8th episode of the 2003 TV series Skin
Behind the Scenes
- This episode had about 2.14 million viewers in the USA, which was 0.45 million less than the previous episode.
- Hashtag during the airing is #TVDSearchParty
- Caroline: (to Elena about Tyler) "He's deferring from enrolling and deferring from returning my phone calls. So, I'm deferring from having sex with him ever again."
- (Matt is tying up Katherine's wrists with rope while Jeremy loads up the truck)
- Katherine: "Are these ropes really necessary?"
- Jeremy: "Bullet would've been more effective, but we're trying to be nice. You crashed my car and left me to die."
- Katherine: "You were gonna hand me over to Silas to get Stefan back. I was just protecting myself."
- Matt: "How many people have you killed using that excuse? Just be glad we got you some clothes."
- Katherine: "Don't play the hero. You two are just waiting for the convenient time to hand me back over to him. I've done this a thousand times. I get it. I'm the leverage. I'm that thing that everybody wants. (She pouts in realization) I'm the freaking moonstone!"
- (Katherine is staring at the shotgun that Matt's holding)
- Jeremy: "Don't even think about it."
- Katherine: "Please. I wouldn't even know how to use it. I've never shot a gun in my life. Didn't need to-- I was much more deadly."
- Jeremy: "Key word: was."
- Matt: "I'm gonna go get some wood for the fire. I'll be back."
- Katherine: "I survived childbirth, the death of my entire family, and five hundred years of running from an immortal hybrid. You can understand why I'm a little upset that I'm on the verge of being defeated by a sinus infection!"
- Jeremy: "Get in the truck and drive."
- Katherine: "Where are you going?"
- Jeremy: "I can't leave Matt."
- Katherine: (stutters) "Wait. How do you think I survived five hundred years? It wasn't because I was a vampire, it's because I never looked back. Don't be dumb. Survive."
- Jeremy: "That's why people treat you like an object and not like a person."
- Elena: "It was mortifying. We just sat there in silence."
- Damon: "You want me to beat him up?"
- Elena: "Not yet. Whatever he knows, I'm gonna get it out of him."
- Damon: "Did you compel him?"
- Elena: "No, because chances are, if he knows about vampires, then he also knows about vervain."
- Damon: "How about violence? Did you threaten him?"
- Elena: "No, I didn't threaten him."
- Damon: "Would you at least tell me you used torture?"
- Elena: "Damon!"
- Damon: "You do realize that you are dating a reformed serial killer, right?"