THE VAMPIRE DIARIES Sneak Peek: His Brother’s Keeper

Vampire Diaries photo 717 s7e17 I Went to the Woods

Paul Wesley delivers a tour-de-force in dual roles as Stefan Salvatore and an extremely flawed soul, Marty Hammond, tonight on THE VAMPIRE DIARIES.  Executive Producer, Julie Plec, returns to the director’s chair to helm the episode that she wrote with Neil Reynolds.

Last week, Stefan (Paul Wesley) found out that Damon (Ian Somerhalder) was unwilling to risk his own happiness to save Stefan from death.  Rather than taking the Phoenix Stone scar as he promised, Damon gambled on “having it all,” and Rayna (guest star Leslie-Anne Huff) killed Stefan with the Phoenix Sword.

Mary Louise and Nora escaped with the sword and destroyed it (and themselves) in a fiery car explosion, not realizing that Stefan’s spirit was still trapped inside the stone.  So what of Stefan’s body and soul?

That question will be answered tonight amid the confusion of body switches, alliance crossovers and Damon struggling to take on the role of “hero.”  Nothing is what it seems to be on the surface.

Tonight’s episode, “I Went to the Woods,” has an appropriate title for Stefan’s take on what is happening to him.  He is confused, disoriented and unclear on where he is.  He is alone and vulnerable and trapped in a difficult situation that he must try his best to survive.

He awakens next to a burning school bus.  After failing to save everyone, he is unsure if he is in Hell or totally disoriented.  Most confusing is why his soul is trapped in Marty’s body and how he will survive.  His new body risks deterioration within days and being stranded in snow in a forest adds to the challenges.

Stefan is not the only one stuck in a quagmire of questions.  What circumstances could bring Valerie (guest star Elizabeth Blackmore) and Alaric (Matt Davis), Matt (Zach Roerig) and Rayna to team up temporarily to find Stefan.

Unfortunately for Stefan, Rayna is mystically bound to complete her hit list, and those on the list must die.

Damon, wallowing in guilt over how his own selfishness doomed his brother to the hell of the Phoenix Sword, sets out on his own to try to save Stefan.  Masquerading as “Deputy Matt Donovan,” Damon questions a victim in his search for his younger brother who is wearing the “Marty body.”

Contacting Stefan using the victim’s phone, Damon pushes Stefan to set aside his self-pity, encouraging his little brother to lash out in anger at all of Damon’s shortcomings.  The anger gets Stefan moving through the snow and toward a brother that he doubts will be there for him…again.

THE VAMPIRE DIARIES also stars Candace King, Kat Graham and Michael Malarkey.

THE VAMPIRE DIARIES airs tonight at 8:00 p.m. on The CW.  Immediately following tonight’s episode is a TVD crossover with THE ORIGINALS at 9:00 p.m.

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