Small town. Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev) is back at high school. She and her brother Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen), also a high school student, have lost their parents at an accident last spring and things have never been the same ever since. Elena struggles to make it through, while Jeremy spends most of his time getting high, giving drugs to Vicki (Kayla Ewell) and hoping she will choose him over the cocky football player Tyler (Michael Trevino). It is up to their young Aunt Jenna (Sara Canning) to look after Elena and Jeremy.
In the meantime, Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley) is back at his home town after a long time. Stefan is a 17-year-old going on over about 160. He is a vampire, who refuses to feed on humans and is lured back into town because of Elena’s existence. Elena carries an uncanny resemblance to his ex-love Katerina (also played by Nina Dobrev). He wants to carry on a normal existence, while getting to know her. So he enrolls in her high school. Everyone is intrigued by the presence of this new hot student, especially Elena’s friend Caroline (Candice Accola). Unfortunately for Caroline, Elena seems as smitten as Stefan. At first this pleases Elena’s best friend Bonnie (Katerina Graham) and depresses Elena’s ex Matt (Zach Roerig), a good-natured football player who is still in love with her.
Unfortunately, Stefan’s peaceful existence is challenged by the mysterious deaths occurring all around town and he has a pretty good idea who is sucking their blood- it is none other than his vampire but not-so-good-natured brother Damon Salvatore (Ian Somerhalder). He has no intention of behaving himself. In fact, there is nothing he loves more than complicating Stefan’s life. He was also involved with Katerina and their past issues comes up- along with flashbacks- throughout the episodes.
Another problem for Stefan is that Bonnie is coming from a long line of witches and she is starting to gain some powers, and she is not enjoying the vibe she is getting from the new love of her best friend…
The Background and the Fun Stuff.
The series are based on a series of books written by L. J. Smith, also called The Vampire Diaries. One of the show’s producers is the famous horror/thriller writer Kevin Williamson who is famous for Scream, The Faculty, I Know What You Did Last Summer and Cursed. He was interestingly also the writer of the hit teen show Dawson’s Creek starring Joshua Jackson, James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes and Joshua Jackson.
On a side note, the actor playing Jeremy, Elena’s brother, is played by Steven R. McQueen, who is the grandson of the late movie icon Steve McQueen.
The vampires in this show can’t be hurt by garlic or holy water. They can be killed by fire, pretty much the standards the modern vampires hold. However they still need to be invited into a home before they go in, pretty much like the vamps in Buffy The Vampire Slayer. There is also the issue of the vampire faces- while they don’t get as much make-up done as the ugly faces of the Buffy vampires, their eyes go red, weird disfigurement appears on their faces and their teeth show. It is also funny that they get this face when they get turned as well. They also have special rings that allow them to go under the sun without hurting.
One of the episodes also carries a fun reference to Twilight in one episode. As Damon is sitting on Caroline’s bed and reading one of her Twilight novels, she asks him why he doesn’t sparkle like Edward and he answers that he lives in the real world where vampires get burned under the sun. He also makes a fun comment on he doesn’t understand why everyone in the series is so fascinated by Bella and says she’s got them all whipped.
The Vampire Diaries is a fun and addictive vampire/mystery/romance show. Sure it has lots of teen angst and drama but it balances it well with enough mystery and action. There are enough murders and blood-sucking to keep this in the action genre but not enough gore and sex to compete with True Blood.
The Vampire Diaries has caught a great balance with the modern vampire understanding (the pretty vampires who don’t burst into flames) but they carry some of the classic myth (they need invitations, they have vampire faces- they are not pretty when they turn…).It is also refreshing that the reason Elena and Stefan don’t have sex right away is that Stefan is afraid she will see his vampire face- it is not like he is afraid he will bite her or hurt her or something like that.
Fun, modern and unisex. Sure, Salvatore brothers do and will have more than their share of female fans but it doesn’t change the fact that this is one engaging show. Give it a shot.
8 on IMDB, with nearly 60.000 votes.
Other Vampire Show and Movie Posts Covered
The Twilight Saga Posts