American Gothic is the eighteenth episode of the fourth season of The Vampire Diaries and the eighty-fourth episode of the series overall.


RACE FOR THE CUREElena and Rebekah take off in search of Katherine and find themselves in a small town in Pennsylvania, where Elena has a surprising encounter with another old acquaintance -- Elijah. Stefan and Damon are both concerned about Elena's state of mind and are determined to do what's best for her, but she makes it clear that helping her will be difficult. Damon is not sure how to react when Stefan reveals his unexpected plan for the future. Meanwhile, in Mystic Falls, Klaus receives Caroline's reluctant help and comes to a new understanding of Silas' powers.                                        




Main Cast

Recurring Cast



  • AntagonistsSilasElena Gilbert and Katherine Pierce.
  • Elijah returns after being absent for seventeen episodes.
  • Elena and Katherine come face-to-face for the first time since the incident on The Island.
  • Rebekah and Katherine meet each other for the first time since 1492. According to Rebekah, they did not have much contact with each other because Katherine spent more time with Klaus and Elijah.
  • Elijah and Katherine are revealed to be in a relationship. They later broke up in the episode The Originals.
  • It is said that Katherine killed Jeremy, when in fact it was Silas who snapped his neck. However, Katherine did indirectly result in Jeremy's death by being the person who forced Jeremy to feed Silas his blood in the first place, which gave him the strength and mobility to kill Jeremy that he would not have had otherwise.
  • This is the first episode in which Candice Accola plays a dual role when she plays both Caroline and Silas.
    • This is also the first time Silas takes on Caroline's form.
  • Elijah kisses Elena thinking that she's Katherine.
  • Elena impersonated Katherine for the first time in this episode, after multiple instances throughout the series in which Katherine impersonated Elena.
  • Katherine's nickname for Elijah Mikaelson in her phone is his initials: E.M.
  • Katherine says, "There goes the neighborhood," which is a nod to the Season One episode of the same name.
  • Klaus and Caroline become genuine friends in this episode.
  • Jeremy, Matt, Bonnie, and Tyler do not appear in this episode.
  • This is the first episode in which Elijah calls Katherine by her anglicized name as opposed to Katerina, both during conversations with others and with Katherine herself.
  • Elena kills Jolene, making this her second kill in the series (the first kill being Connor in The Killer). This is also the first time she has killed someone without necessity, as opposed to when she killed Connor, which was a matter of self-defense.
    • In the Season Six episode Because, the humanity-free Caroline will bring this up after Elena tries to get her turn on her humanity again.
  • It is revealed that Elena had kept Elijah's letter until it was destroyed when she burned down her house in Stand By Me
  • Klaus spent the episode believing that Silas had broken a piece of the white oak stake into his back in the previous episode to the point where he actually felt the piece scraping against his heart. However, the true extent of Silas' psychic powers was ultimately revealed for the first time when Caroline made Klaus so angry that he snapped out of the illusion that Silas had cast on him, and Klaus realized that Silas never had the stake in the first place—he had only made Klaus imagine that he did.
    • He also used this power of illusion to make Klaus believe that he had equal or superior strength and speed to an Original vampire/hybrid, even though in reality, Silas' speed and strength are only marginally greater than a human's.

Body Count



Behind the Scenes

  • This episode started filming on February 8.[1]
  • Scenes in Willoughby were actually shot in "Stone Mountain Village" in Stone Mountain, Georgia.[2]
  • This episode had about 2.46 million viewers in the USA, which was 0.19 million less than the previous episode.
  • Hashtag during the airing is #KatFight

Cultural References

  • American Gothic is a painting by Grant Wood, in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago. The painting shows a farmer standing beside his spinster daughter.
  • Also American Gothic is an American horror series starring Gary Cole, created by Shaun Cassidy and executive produced by Sam Raimi.
  • American Gothic is the American form of the literary movement known as dark romanticism.
  • "Every cloud has a silver lining" is a phrase used to tell someone that there is a brighter side to the problem they are facing.


Stefan: (to Damon) "What happened to the guy who thought Elena should embrace being a vampire?"
Damon: (to Stefan) "That guy got his neck snapped in New York, and she's a pain enough as it is."
Stefan: (to Rebekah) "You have no chance at finding this cure."
Silas: (to Klaus while in Caroline's form) "I will bring you nothing but misery."
Elena: "I think I just found Katherine."
Elena: (to Katherine) "Give me the cure. Now."
Katherine: (to Elena) "Yeah, like that's gonna happen."
Damon: "Looks like we have a winner."

Damon: (angrily) "If they so much as even scratched the paint on my car..."
Stefan: "Why don't you just be grateful Sheriff Forbes was able to track down the car after you let them... mmm, you know... steal it from you?"
Damon: "Remind me to send her some mini-muffins. Do we really need ten gallons of gas, or do you making me just lag this around as punishment?"
Stefan: "They ditched your car after they ran out of fuel-- we gotta fill it up. We've got a hundred miles before we get to Willoughby."
Damon: "Yeah, well, I don't remember that name from the list of places I got in NY."
Stefan: "Ah, the list. You mean the list they stole from right under your nose after you let your guard down? They'll be there. Sheriff Forbes tracked down the car they stole after yours."
Damon: "Screw the muffins, I'll get her champagne if Elena is wherever it may be."
Stefan: "Willoughby. Cream Corn Capital of Pennsylvania. They'll be there. Let's just hope we get to them before they get to the cure."
Damon: "Oh, silver lining. If Rebekah takes the cure, then she is mortal. We can just kill her right then and there."
Stefan: "Oh! Dark cloud. Elena stays a vampire forever. Look, why don't you just table your revenge fantasies for now and just keep your eye on the prize? Find Katherine, get the cure, get out before you get your neck snapped ... Again."
Damon: "Believe me, I learned my lesson. Elena without humanity is a stone cold bitch, and I won't trust her until we get the old Elena back."
Stefan: "Look at that. We are finally on the same page about something."
Damon: "Look at that."

Rebekah: "You know, it's funny, I've always been a little envious of the legend that is Katherine Pierce. The way you could wrap men around your little finger. The way Elijah betrayed Klaus for you. The way the Salvatore brothers stumbled head over heels for you. And yet, here we are, all these years later, in a town that you've had to compel into liking you. (She laughs) Oh! I'm sorry. I shouldn't laugh. It's really more sad than funny."
Katherine: "You know you can't split the cure with Elena, right?"
Rebekah: "She doesn't want it."
Katherine: "Oh, no? But you do. You wanna take it? Are you really that dumb or just naturally blonde?"
Rebekah: "I want a normal life again."
Katherine: "You mean you want a do-over. Well, guess what? You can't have it. The cure will only take away your immortality. Everything else you hate about yourself, you'll still wake up with that in the morning, and you won't even be able to compel yourself a friend."
[Rebekah grabs Katherine's wrist and twists it hard]
[Stefan and Damon appear]
Stefan: (to Rebekah and Katherine) "Ladies. Playing nice?"
[Damon sits down]
Katherine: "There goes the neighborhood."
Damon: (to Rebekah) "I see you've got Katherine already." (to Katherine) "You're losing your touch, evil one."

Damon: "Do you know where she is?"
Katherine: "I can give you a hint. Start by looking at the town morgue. She's probably dead. She went to meet up with a friend of mine. You may know him? An Original brother? Impeccable taste."
Rebekah: (stunned) "Elijah?"
Damon: "Elijah's here?"
Stefan: "Well, you sort of have to question Elijah's impeccable taste if he's friends with you."
Katherine: "Oh, when I say "friend," I mean "friend."
(Damon and Rebekah groan with disgusted looks on their faces)
Katherine: "It probably took him about ten seconds to realize that she wasn't me. At which point he probably yanked her heart right out of her chest."

Elijah: "You've abandoned your emotions. Why?"
Elena: "My brother's dead. Your girlfriend killed him." (Elijah looks shocked and horrified) "You didn't know? Of course you didn't."
Elijah: "She lied."
Elena: "I hate to say 'I told you so,' but... duh."

Elena: "You boys are all the same. Damon and Stefan still think that the girl they love is still in here somewhere too."
Elijah: "You can't blame them for having hope, Elena. It would be a shame if the world lost a soul as compassionate as yours."
Elena: (quotes Elijah's letter) "'Your compassion is a gift, Elena. Carry it with you, always and forever.' I remember reading that in a letter once."
Elijah: (smirks) "Well, the writer sounds positively gifted."



Last.fm_play.png "Forget Me Not" – The Civil Wars
Last.fm_play.png "Days Long Gone" – Don Gallardo

Last.fm_play.png "Why Try" – Young Summer



See also

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