Spoiler Alert! Do not read this article if you have yet to watch tonight's episode of The Vampire Diaries. Seriously. If you do choose to continue reading, you do not get to complain about spoilers in the comments. House rules.
Is there really anything else to say after tonight's jaw-dropping episode of The Vampire Diaries? Just when you think the CW hit can't get any twistier or mindblowing, it just goes and tops itself, leaving our minds reeling and our jaws on the floor. The serial killer plaguing Mystic Falls was finally exposed and the reveal will change everything for almost all of the characters.
So where do we go from here? And what will happen to [spoiler]?! Here's what the cast and executive producer Julie Plec (who wrote the epic episode) had to say about the show's latest bombshell...
Alaric (Matt Davis) is the Mystic Falls serial killer!
Yes, our favorite history teacher/vampire hunter has been the person ravaging the council members in town for the last several episodes...including himself! Seriously, did anyone not get chills when Alaric, Meredith (Torrey DeVitto) and Elena (Nina Dobrev) put all the pieces together? It was heartbreaking, chilling and just plain awesome all at once.
Basically, the Gilbert ring, which protects someone from death via supernatural entities, is making our dear Ric cuckoo bananas...just like Elena's descendants John Gilbert, who was often described as crazy, and Samantha Gilbert, who we learned was the person killin' people back in 1912. We repeat: Best. Twist. Ever. Seriously, this is right up there with Klaus (Joseph Morgan) taking over Ric's body back in season two.
At the CW drama's PaleyFest panel, the cast and Plec talked about the big reveal after the audience screened the episode.
"There's a big journey for Alaric," Plec said. "[It's] a big journey for Elena. Stefan and everybody are going to be at the center of this storyline."
She continued, "There's something really beautiful about this ring being responsible for a darkness to take hold. He tried to walk out the [Gilbert] house in the first episode of the season and in the second episode. He tried to refuse the ring, but Elena asked him to take it back to be part of her family. Now there's consequence to that."
Of the jaw-dropping twist, Paul Wesley told us, "It's a Dr. Jekyll-Mr. Hyde thing and it's so desperately what that character needed. He was becoming the typical guardian. They took a character that was so safe and stable and relatively predictable and gave him this incredible twist." He added, "I thought that was one of the coolest ideas they had all year." Preach!
Obviously, Davis was thrilled by the dark turn. "It's a beautiful experience to watch unfold," he said. "I love seeing the evolution of the character...I love that we're at the tipping point of the consequence of all that."
As for what's ahead, Wesley teased, "Stefan's definitely going to be a part of exorcising the demons out of him."
Someone else who should be concerned about this mythology reveal? Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen), who is currently wearing the other ring in Denver. Ruh-roh! "It definitely has implications for Jeremy," Plec teased.
"Jeremy is now widely unprotected, so Elena, who's a character all about saving and protecting the ones she holds the most dear, now has to deal with her guardian in a difficult place and potentially her brother," Plec said. While the new development will affect all the characters, Elena will impacted the most, with Dobrev saying, "Everything that she depended on is now gone."
News of Davis joining the CW's drama pilot Cult sent TVD fans into panic mode earlier this week, and the actor took to his Twitter account to address the situation. "Alaric's journey on TVD is far from over," he writes. "The CW has been gracious enough to allow me the opportunity to play two amazing characters simultaneously on their network....assuming Cult gets picked up."
What did you think of tonight's episode and shocking twist? Do you think Alaric is the next character to die on TVD? Sound off in the comments!
(Originally published March 15, 2012, at 7:32 p.m. PT)