At just a few minutes before 8 p.m., when all of us were anxiously flicking on our TV’s Michael Trevino (who plays Tyler Lockwood) tweeted “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaand we’re back…” and back they were. “The Vampire Diaries” returned from one of the CW network’s famous, fan-dreaded hiatuses with an episode that seriously packed a punch.

“Know Thy Enemy” brought the series back with a big-name packed episode (Hello, Isobel’s back) that housed Katherine and Isobel (and possibly even Klaus?) all in once place, and not only that, but in once scene. The Katherine and Isobel bonding moments left everyone wondering how our favorite leather-jacket-wearing three-some and their pals would pull themselves out of this one, only to send us for a loop when Isobel turned out to be in some trouble of her own. The disappointing news however, is if her disturbingly-fiery death, at her daughter’s feet, was permanent –as most are– this may be the last we see of Mia Kirshner.

The episode without a doubt had everyone on the edge of their couches, beds, or what-have-you, with its unending twists and turns that had us jerking around and screaming at the television right from the start. Sending us from hating John, who seems to constantly make questionable decisions, to feeling for him by the end of the episode –David Anders always delivers flawlessly in that way.

Even Katherine broke out her flat iron, which always implies that she means business. Whenever the she-vamp strolls on screen sporting straight hair, we always wait anxiously for Nina Dobrev’s face-off with herself which has proved on countless occasions to be not only a well maneuvered trick for Katherine but for the post production geniuses who staple it together seamlessly.

Bonnie is getting more super-witch by the minute, proving to be an essential piece to the season’s puzzle. It is refreshing to see her pulling some major weight and becoming a front-running character after she disappeared for a number of episodes after her grandmother’s death in season one and seemed to take the back-burner when Caroline’s vamp storyline first picked up in the beginning of season two.

It what could definitely be considered the twist of the episode, Alaric got his brain/soul/good nature swapped with Klaus in some kind of bizarre possession ritual, leading to him approaching Katherine in a rather suggestive way. If every viewer on the planet wasn’t already wondering what was going down in Mystic Falls, they are now.

Also, Stefan and Damon had another of their recent brotherly chats, knocking glasses when they realized that for once, they may actually be one step ahead of the game. And though it is almost too much brooding, good looks, and sarcasm for us to take in, it always proves to be gold when the writers give Paul Wesley and Ian Sommerhalder their moments together.

Matt and Caroline continue to tug at viewers’ heartstrings episode after episode, (though now he seems to have thrown her under the sheriff-mommy bus) which leaves everyone with the same daunting question: Where is Tyler Lockwood? Fans have been assured that crowd-favorite Michael Trevino is returning soon, but for many soon is not even soon enough.

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Layne Morgan is a Blast correspondent

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