Posts tagged ‘Elena Gilbert’

Dear Vampire Diaries: Volume 6

Dear Vampire Diary,

 

Remember that time I asked why it is that becoming a vampire makes you inherently creepy? That was not a rhetorical question. Seems our friends Anna and Ben, that bartender (who strikes me as a vampire redshirt), haven’t just kidnapped Elena, but also Bonnie. In case you were unclear, serial kidnapping is definitely creepy.

 

If anti-virus software was this effective against invasions I might actually buy a PC again!

"Argh, this is the worst brain freeze I've ever experienced!" "Don't test me, or I'll show you my magical wet willie too!"

Holy crap! Bonnie’s grandmother just like gut-punched Damon with just her mind. “I’m not Bonnie” she says, and she’s not kidding. Bonnie’s response to Damon asking for witch help would probably have been to go willingly with Damon into an obvious trap or something.

 

Wow, maybe I should take that back! She just turned a glass of ordinary motel water into fire using just her mind and magic, to attack and escape from her vampire captor/ex-boyfriend. And she would have gotten away with it too, had she not let her best friend get taken hostage on the way out. Two steps forward, one step back. Plus, in fairness, it was MOTEL water, so it was probably pretty close to flammable to start with.

 

Once Stefan inevitably rescues the girls, they regroup at the casa del whatever the Spanish word for “witches” is. There they hatch a pretty terrible plan…actually no, what they do is resurrect the same terrible plan Stefan already pretended to have (helping Damon free Katherine, but kill the other vampires sealed with her). This time, though, they have an experienced witch agreeing to help. So really all they’ve managed to do is make their bad plan worse.

 

I feel like Stefan should at least already have his flamethrower ready, honestly!

"What could go wrong? We're just going to open the door to a magical prison containing 27 hungry, angry vampires." "Everything about that is wrong!"

Damon’s certainly a tough one to read. At first he was a full-blown sociopath, then he was just the irresponsible brother for a while and now he’s mellowed to the point that he’s practically a gentleman. I mean, I can’t remember the last time he compelled someone selfishly, not even when he took Elena to Georgia without her vervain. She even takes it off again to try and prove to him that she and Stefan really want to help him, and he just takes her at her word.

 

Jeremy finally opens up to his vampire stalker-ess (is there a female form of the word stalker?), and she responds by revealing that she’s leaving town suddenly for no plausibly defined reason. Well, unless you count her undead mother being resurrected by witches in an underground tomb. Then her thug boyfriend knocks him unconscious so he can meet the parent. You could have just asked!

 

You know, in a way, the Vampire Diaries take on teens and alcohol is refreshing. They just acknowledge that it exists. Now personally, I’m against alcohol period, so trust me when I say I’m not being biased about this point. But so many shows make such a big spectacle out of teen drinking one way or another. It’s kind of nice to see a show treat the issue in a way that seems more realistic. It’s around, no one’s surprised to see it at a party…it just adds to the totally realistic vampire slice of life story.

 

I notice the witches are wearing precautionary vervain necklaces, which gives me an excuse to make an aside here. If I live in a world full of vampires, I don’t think a thin metal chain would make me feel safe from their influence. They do have super strength, after all. For my money, I’d want it live woven into my clothes or something. That seems like a pretty good barrier.

 

Convoluted? Yes. Badass? Also yes.

"Oh my god it burns! We’re in a freaking forest, wouldn’t it have been easier just to stake me!?"

Generally I have to say I prefer Damon’s style as a character, but I can’t deny that Stefan has some pretty amazing moments himself. For example, clotheslining a vampire and then setting him on fire with a makeshift flamethrower.

 

I probably shouldn’t have sold Bonnie’s grandmother so short, after all she’s not Bonnie, just as she pointed out earlier. She didn’t even need a plan to compensate for Stefan’s bad idea, apparently the seal keeping the vampires in the tomb was unrelated to the door they opened using the witch ritual. This means all the vampires inside are still stuck inside, new ones can just enter.

 

When Stefan goes inside to try and save Elena from a whole slew of vampires – actually “slew” seems like a very fitting plural noun for vampires – Bonnie threatens to try and take the seal down herself to save him, if her grandma won’t help. I say let her try, she’s more likely to spontaneously turn into a newt than successfully pull off that spell.

 

Unsurprisingly, that whole “living corpse” thing they’ve been alluding to for a while now is pretty gross.

 

Damon discovers that Katherine isn’t in the tomb after all, and is rightfully pretty pissed. When Elena comes to fetch the boys while the witches are still keeping the seal at bay, he seems to think she’s Katherine for a split second. Which raises an unsettling thought. Assuming Elena is really related to Katherine, then if Damon dated Katherine and Stefan dated Elena, then they’d have all the creepiness of brothers dating identical twins AND brothers dating a mother and daughter. That’s some kinky stuff.

 

Aw, sad Damon’s no fun :(. He interrogates Anna and her mother, only to discover they knew the whole time that Katherine’s been loose. She’s known where to find Damon and didn’t care. Even vampires can’t escape the abusive vampire relationship cycle.

 

So let’s review Bonnie’s track record for the episode. She managed to get herself kidnapped by a guy she pretty much knew was a vampire, but then she cast a pretty cool spell. Of course her own incompetence undid the usefulness of said spell, but she got rescued anyway. With her grandmother’s help she managed to open the door to that tomb using an old ritual, enacting a trap that should have sealed all the vampires they know away forever. Bonnie persuaded her grandmother to assist her in breaking the seal to the tomb to save one vampire (Stefan) while releasing three potentially dangerous vampires, as well as permanently leaving the door open to the rest of those living corpse vampires in the tomb. Oh yeah, and the spell that broke free all of those man-eating vampires? It killed her totally awesome grandmother.

 

Bonnie sucks!

 

 

Dear Vampire Diary,

 

We’re back to business as usual, with our newly escaped vampire friend feeding on a human hiker in broad daylight. I actually really like the blocking here, where the camera focuses on the vampire’s hand as he kills that guy so we can see his lapus lazuli ring. Since we found out that Emily the witch enchanted those rings, it makes sense that the vampires from Mystic Falls back in the day would all be daywalkers. All the more reason not to let them escape the tomb for any reason, Bonnie!

 

Utilizing a laughably implausible series of deductions, Aunt Jenna has tracked down a high school yearbook photo of the woman who could well be Elena’s birthmother. You can tell they’re related because of their shared dark features and brooding expressions.

 

Does it really come as a shock that I watched The O.C. considering that I'm watching the entirety of Vampire Diaries?

"Hey, Melinda Clarke, I loved you as Julie Cooper on the O.C.!" "Thanks! Wish I could say the same about your work defiling my son and couch."

Oh good, a completely unmotivated scene’s worth of fan service between Caroline and Matt. And here I was worrying that I wasn’t going to see Caroline without a shirt on today. That sounds like sarcasm, but she’s cute so if she wants to take her shirt off I’ll allow it. Unfortunately even that won’t cause her or Matt to contribute anything worthwhile to the plot. It will, however, provide an awkward context for Matt’s loosely established mother to mysteriously come back to town. Oops.

 

All things considered, once they revealed that Alaric’s wife and Elena’s mother had the same first name, it seemed pretty much impossible for that to be a coincidence. When Aunt Jenna and Alaric hook up, there’s going to be a weird quasai-incestuous web to untangle.

 

Hey, good for Isobel! She’s the one person who managed to figure out that those “animal attacks” were the laziest cover-up in history. Also sort of explains why she got eaten by a vampire. Be careful what you wish for?

 

At least vervain is more versatile and less conspicuous than Kryptonite.

"Would you like one lump of vervain with your tea or two?"

Vervain is sort of starting to have that same disproportionate availability problem that Kryptonite has in the Superman world. I’m pretty sure they said it was pretty hard to come by, at least in Virginia, and now every Tom, Dick and Harry’s serving vervain tea with crumpets.

 

Seriously? This is our B-Story du jour? The founders are having a charity bachelor auction? That sounds more like a Desperate Housewives plot or something. I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt, Vampire Diaries, but I suspect someone(s) in the writers room was drunk.

 

I find this auction system confusing. They seem to be suggesting that you buy raffle tickets which then represent the cash value you spent on them, which you can use to bid on bachelors. Wouldn’t is be easier to just…have an auction?

 

With some help from the Sheriff, Damon pieces together that this Isobel woman everyone’s clamoring about is Alaric’s dead wife who he sort of ate. Of course, being Damon, he finds the most tasteless and humiliating way to confirm this fact for Alaric. I imagine Damon doesn’t know about his Saltzman Stake-o-Matic, cause I sure don’t want to mess with that and I’m not even a vampire.

 

Okay, so now I finally understand this date auction…as much as I’m going to. Looks like it is in fact a date raffle, with the winners of dates being chosen randomly, through a raffle system. This is awkward in so many ways. For one, you probably don’t raise as much money for charity this way and secondly people donating to the charity could get stuck on a super-awkward blind date.

 

No wonder the IMF only ever has a handful of people on staff!

I’ve heard of a message self-destructing after five seconds, but a messenger? That seems needlessly wasteful.

Pro tip, Isobel, when you don’t want to be found, but the only person looking for you already thinks you’re dead, sending a messenger to tell them you don’t want to be found is only going to make them want to look for you. You might as well tell me NOT to push a giant red button!

 

Alaric confronts Damon with a stake and learns that Isobel wasn’t killed, she was turned. He is then quickly killed by Damon and left for dead as his craziness renews his quest to find Katherine. “Quickly” here meaning both shortly thereafter and for a short amount of time, as a flashback vaguely explains that Alaric’s family heirloom ring isn’t lapus lazuli, but some sort of undeath ring. I wish my Cheerios had one of those in it!

 

Again, Isobel, when you send a self-destructing messenger to tell people that you’re alive, dumb things can happen. Like Elena stealing said messenger’s phone and using it to call you. This is why you can’t have nice things.

 

That one vampire who escaped discovers a halfway home for receased (re-undead?) vampires, run by Anna and her mother, Pearl. Whatever happens as a result of this is also Bonnie’s fault.

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Dear Vampire Diaries: Volume 2

Dear Vampire Diary,

 

Okay, Mystic Falls, what’s the deal? Don’t you have any animal experts at all? I feel like all of these gruesome “animal attacks” would have raised at least SOME suspicion of something more sinister than a wolf or whatever. Of course I say this, but it’s really only a matter of time until werewolves show up and make me sound silly.

 

Aw yeah! We’re finally going to have an implausible social event! These are a staple of any teen drama worth the name. I wonder if the Founder’s Party is going to be all-in ridiculous, like black-tie or something.

 

Damon’s relationship with Caroline seems like an allegory for controlling male dominance in a relationship. And I thought that before the stab at Twilight that makes it even more apparent (Damon sits lamenting the past days of Anne Rice and asks “What’s so special about Bella?”).

 

If there’s some sort of drug to help treat the symptoms of angst, I’d like to sign Elena’s brother Jeremy up for the trial group. He’s throwing an absolute fit over his sister lending their family heirlooms to the mayor’s family for one night of cultural history. Chill out!

 

Obviously some of it would be myth, but don't you think people hunting vampires would be prepared for this type of situation?

"So, you going to invite me in?" "Well, I'm part of a secret council that actively hunts vampires...so sure, why not?"

It’s a good thing so many people in Mystic Falls are predisposed to phrasing their greetings as an invitation inside, otherwise vampires would have much more trouble crashing parties. And here I was thinking that being a plus one would be invitation enough. Silly me.

 

You know, I wasn’t having a problem with this party until the awkward scene where Caroline tries to get Stefan to dance with her. Am I the only one who thinks its weird to ask your friend’s date to dance when you came to the party with your own date? I guess that’s not the weirdest thing I’ve heard of, but she handled it really strangely. Making things MORE peculiar, though, is the fact that the founder’s party is more like a museum wing than a fancy ball, plus there doesn’t seem to be music playing. Where did she plan on dancing and to what?

 

Stefan’s at a pretty big disadvantage in the vampire war. Not only does he not drink human blood, making him physically weaker, but Daman’s natural charm is leaps and bounds above Stefan’s sincerity. He lies to Elena about what happened with Katherine, and even without his mind powers she buys it hook, line and sinker.

 

This C story about the witch girl learning to light candles with her mind is the least organic plot I can remember in ages. She’s in only a few scenes by herself in contrived situations to get her to try to start the fires, with no motivation for her to think she can or to try to do so.

 

Elena spots the horrific vampire bites on Carolyn’s neck. Maybe I’m onto something with this allegory angle. Vampires are abusive boyfriends, who feed on their lovers (though literally here instead of emotionally). Meanwhile Stefan is the one who can actually change?

 

Then again, looking at this whole Vicky choosing the lesser of two awfuls dating plotline, maybe this show is just about broken relationships.

 

I really do feel for Caroline, but she's not the brightest bulb, I wouldn't be shocked by this reaction from her.

"Oh you're spiking my drink?" "Yes, but only to kill my vampire brother" "Aw, so no incestuous vampire threesome?"

Okay, in fairness I definitely underestimated Stefan here. His ploy to spike Carolyn’s drink with the anti-vampire macguffin was pretty masterful, knowing that Damen would feed on her without a second thought. Of course he goes right back to wussville by locking Damen up instead of killing him, or even letting his “uncle” kill him, when he’s clearly proven to be super dangerous.

 

What on Earth!? Well I guess the town doesn’t have any animal experts, but they DO have some Vampire experts…the founder’s council? That’s a pretty good twist, and at least partially explains why the council was throwing a similar fit to Jeremy regarding that pocket watch.

 

 

Dear Vampire Diary,

 

If a vampire doesn’t feed for long enough, they don’t die, but instead become a living corpse? And that’s Stefan’s 50 year rehabilitation plan? This vampire stuff’s getting real, but I can’t decide if I’ve underestimated Stefan again.

 

Oh yeah, forgot about Matt…I guess he’s technically a character too, though I think he’s competing with Bonnie for the title of least useful character.

 

More Vampire hunter talk. Interesting stuff. If the watch has some anti vampire voodoo, and is a family heirloom, does that mean the Gilberts are vampire slayers? Also it’s clear that the council doesn’t know about the weird magic daytime rings, which means they’re probably not especially good at their job.

 

I’m all for clean living, but you picked a weird time to start, Jeremy. You finally hook up with the bad girl and THEN you decide you don’t want to be doing drugs? You’re doing it backwards, when you start your downward spiral, you’re supposed to meet a bad influence and then use that relationship as the excuse to START taking drugs!

 

Unlike Caroline and Vicky before him, it looks like Mr. Tanner is dead. I can’t say I blame Damon for not showing restraint on that one. Doesn’t seem like anyone at the school misses him…actually, we haven’t actually been anywhere near the school since he died. They had to cancel school when he died, because they had to restaff the entire school, didn’t they?

 

I wonder if she'll ever learn to do anything constructive with her magic, like cast a spell to grow a personality.

"Hey guys, check it out, I'm a witch!" "This is why nobody invites you to parties, Bonnie."

Looks like the vampire regeneration factor can heal burning from sunlight. That’s handy.

 

Speaking of burning, Bonnie the witch really needs some psychiatric help to deal with her pyrokinesis problem.

 

Am I really supposed to believe there was film of local news from the 50’s? A lot of TV shows from back then weren’t even filmed, would the local news really go to the trouble? Even if it existed and even if you could zoom in on someone in the background it would be so hopelessly grainy you’d be unable to make out their features. I call shenanigans.

 

Elena figured out there are vampires. Cool for her.

 

Man, even when Vicky figured out that both of her boyfriends were incurable ogres, the abusive boyfriend vampire allegory thing still bit her…literally…in the neck. She’s been fed on twice. Sucks to be her.

 

 

Dear Vampire Diary,

 

I find it weird that Elena phrased her skepticism about her discovery as “I am not a believer”. This is a vague statement…does she not believe in the supernatural? This is what I assume because otherwise it suggests that people in her world believe in Vampires like they do Santa Claus or like a politician who will actually improve something in office.

 

I kid, she's certainly not that bad, but when I see her on screen she still feels like Elena...except when she's undeading people.

"Yo guys, sorry I'm late for your shindig, I hit mad traffic on the way to your crib."

I don’t know exactly why, but I totally don’t by Elena’s actress playing Katherine. She feels like she’s playing dress up.

 

What is Vicky made of, and how does she keep surviving this horrific blood loss? We should study her for science.

 

Time for the laundry list of Vampire myths! I appreciate the fact that they waited to pull this until there was someone to legitimately ask the questions. So that’s myth busted on crucifixes, holy water, garlic and the reflection thing. So almost none of vampire lore is true…at least they don’t sparkle in daylight.

 

This makes me uncomfortable. So Damon makes Vicky drink some of his blood after she survives yet again, then later they start drinking each other’s blood simultaneously. Somehow this seems weirdly incestuous and unpleasant. Aside from which, if vampires could sustain themselves on vampire blood, would it be necessary to feed on humans? I am confused.

 

So Katherine is the vampire that turned both the brothers, eh? I didn’t exactly call it, but I’m not as surprised as I should be. She’s pretty clearly a callous manipulator, so her using vampire powers selfishly would not be a shock even without my theory of abusive vampires.

 

This party montage with Vicky and Damon is delightfully gratuitous. Usually teen dramas save this sort thing for like slumber parties, but sometimes you’ve got to get the bad boy’s shirt off for some reason. She’s not pulling any shame punches either, dancing around and rolling on the floor in a tight/skimpy outfit.

 

So Vicky goes about expositioning her troubled past to Damon, who points out how very damaged she is and then kills her. Of course, she gets back up because she drank his blood. I’m unclear about how this works. I mean They’ve explained their process: drink a vampire’s blood, die, feed on a human. What I don’t get is how you can be undead before you finish the becoming a vampire process.

 

Maybe the needle is made from a teenage girl's hair, and thus is inherently attracted to vampires.

"Alright, got my vampire compass, got my wooden bullets, time to go vampire hunting! Uh oh, made in Taiwan? These bullets aren't going to kill vampires are they?"

Okay, time to talk about this pocket watch. So it seems that pocket watch that Jeremy was moping about is half of some sort of vampire tracking compass thing. Except that the part that actually seems to track them is the part the founder’s council already had, the compass was just an empty shell when they put the other part inside. So…why did they need the watch? Also, what mechanism does one use to track a vampire, anyway? Are they magnetic? Is it just a regular compass? If so the founders are kind of jerks for stealing the watch, but then again, Jeremy hasn’t seemed to miss it, despite his earlier tantrum.

 

Even if we accept that the compass somehow makes sense, what good is this thing for humans? Vampires are considerably faster, stronger and more mind control-y than humans are. You can use this compass thing to get close, piss of a vampire and then die? I think I need to have a word with their QA team.

 

Local newscaster guy got vampire’d! He has a history of abuse from when he cheated on aunt Jenna. Coincidence, or is he being punished for his abusive relationship past? But if this show sought to punish people for that behavior then it would be focused on the vampires, would it? I’m eventually going to figure out how my theory applies, blast it!

 

Looks like my theory about the compass holds true, at least. It got newscaster guy close enough to Vampires to shoot one, then get him wrecked, by an angry vampire. Once again, this feels like a Torchwood plan to me.

What Are The Vampire Diaries?

I for one think the title card should be printed on a book with vampire fangs. Seems logical to me, even if a little on the nose.

The Standard Vampire Diaries title card, sometimes depicted with dripping blood.

Vampire Diaries is a CW Teen Drama, which like the WB teen dramas which existed before its merger with UPN created the CW, is characterized by teens whose social problems are treated like life or death situations (though depending on the show, sometimes they are), and frequently feature excessive angst and/or brooding about the teenage condition.

 

The TV series, however is based on a trilogy of “young adult vampire horror” novels, written by L.J. Smith and published over a decade before Twilight. The series proved popular enough for fan demand to spark the writing of a fourth novel, and later two additional trilogies (though the most recent is being written by a ghost writer instead of the original author). Despite this popularity and being around before Twilight really exploded the vampire romance genre, I doubt this series would have been adapted for television had Twilight not opened the floodgates for popular culture.

 

Now I’m no fan of the Twilight series, and my reactions to vampires in fiction are often lukewarm, but I am a student of all kind of television, which means I try to give shows a fair chance even if they seem sub par or downright unwatchable at first glance. My first experience with this show was during what some of my friends with similar industry aspirations call a “Pilot Party”. At the start of the fall TV season we’ll get together to watch the premiere episodes of various shows, good or bad and discuss them. We watched Vampire Diaries’ pilot and I was on board with the general consensus; it was better than expected but probably not something I would watch.

I wonder if a vampire could compel your mind through a photo. It would explain my recent taste for human blood.

This is what the cover to the season 1 DVD set looks like. I've had sexy male vampire staring at me for a few weeks asking "why aren't you watching us?"

 

Flash forward to late last year, when I was hanging out with a friend of mine, Amy. When just the two of us are hanging out, we will often watch shows that most of our friends don’t or won’t watch, because she has slightly different taste than most, and as I often say, I’ll watch almost anything. On this particular night, I watched a current episode of Vampire Diaries, and Amy was eager to see what my reaction would be. I had to admit I enjoyed it more than I expected. It still had some problems typical of teen dramas, but I’ve watched at least my fair share of those in the past and enjoyed them despite such issues. This set the wheels in motion.

 

Flash forward again to when Amy acquired the first two seasons of Vampire Diaries on DVD. She loaned the first season to me and told me to watch the whole thing. Well I’ve been gently nudging my friends to give me suggestions or what I like to think of as Challenges of shows suitable for this blog to write about. A challenger approaches: The Vampire Diaries!

 

Enough about me, let’s get into the basics of the show. Let’s start with the supernatural namesake, vampires. As a well-established monster, vampires have reached a point where authors often tweak the rules of vampires powers and weaknesses. The Vampire Diaries follows this trend, but certainly not so egregiously as “Vampires sparkle in the sunlight”. Have I mentioned I don’t like Twilight?

 

Vampire Powers (or Vampowers if you like portmanteaus):

 

-Immortality: Vampires don’t age and will live forever unless someone uses one of their weaknesses to kill them.

-Healing Factor: Vampires aren’t completely indestructible, and can be cut or otherwise hurt, but their natural healing abilities quickly kick in and prevent lasting damage.

-Super Strength: While I don’t actually recall the vampires of the series using their strength for anything especially noteworthy so far, there have been multiple arguments ending with someone being tossed with obviously superhuman strength.

-Super Speed: This one’s pretty straightforward. Vampires are fast! It makes getting from place to place in a small town like Mystic Falls without a car pretty convenient.

Say, since vampires have reflections in this world, I bet they could compel themselves to quit smoking.

Damon Salvatore compels you to watch The Vampire Diaries. And also keep reading my blog.

-Mind Compulsion: This one’s the real kicker, and this show rarely pulls any punches with it, which I appreciate. Vampires can control other people’s minds plus they can erase or create false memories in them. I assume there’s some limit to this power, or else the two central vampires of this show would have compelled their issues away years ago.

 

 

 

 

 

Vampire Weaknesses (or Vampeaknesses if you just like mashing words together):

 

-Wooden Stake: Taking one to the heart will kill a vampire, this holds true as vampire 101.

-Sunlight: Does burn vampires, though if the exposure is not sustained it seems that the healing factor can undo the damage to some degree.

-Invitation: A vampire cannot enter a house without being invited, though once invited they are free to come and go.

-Vervain: Admittedly I’m not a vampire scholar, so I don’t know if this was made up for the show, or established yet obscure. Vervain is an herb of some kind that weakens vampires, to an extreme degree if it’s ingested. If worn or kept in close proximity, vervain also provides some degree of protection for humans, at least to counteract their ability to compel minds.

 

There may be more weaknesses that eventually develop or haven’t been discussed, but those cover the main bases.

 

The Premise:

 

The show revolves around two brothers, Stefan and Damon Salvatore, who were turned into vampires about 150 years ago. They take sibling rivalry to a new level as a woman they fought over even before they were turned is still driving hostilities between them. The pair seemed to be affluent members of society when they were young, but eventually left the town where they lived, Mystic Falls, for reasons not entirely clear to me just yet (though I suspect it was due to a rise in the rates of vampire hunters in town).

 

Things start off as Stefan returns to Mystic Falls, being compelled to meet a girl named Elena Gilbert, the spitting image (and possible descendant) of his and Damon’s old flame, Katherine. Damon quickly shows up and takes just about every opportunity he can to spite Stefan and make him miserable. Things continue largely from there with Stefan merely trying to live a quasai-normal life, Damon being a sociopath and the rest of the town trying to cope with “mysterious animal attacks” and other such vampire fallout.

 

Also not pictured is Matt, who is like Schrodinger's main character. So far the box is empty.

Not pictured is Aunt Jenna, who looks way too young to be anyone's legal guardian.

Characters:

 

There are many, but the show focuses largely around three and a half of them, who I will discuss here.

 

Stefan Salvatore: The “good” vampire who doesn’t feed on humans, but instead feeds on the blood of animals. As a result his vampire abilities are relatively weak, especially his ability to compel humans. Stefan is sensitive, caring and introspective, which combined with his lonely life as a vampire obviously leads him to brood with some regularity. Stefan is remorseful about things he has done in the past due to his vampirism, but has largely changed his ways. He still worries that he is a danger to others because of his relationship to his brother, Damon.

 

Damon Salvatore: The evil vampire brother, no quotes for that one, Damon’s a full on sociopath. He makes it clear that humans are at best pawns in his mind games and at worst nothing more than food. Whatever the details are regarding his love triangle with Stefan and Katherine (a girl the boys knew way back before they were vampires) are they seem to have had a severe impact on Damon’s mental stability. He has no qualms feeding on people or using people to hurt Stefan…or really doing anything that might hurt Stefan. He’s very smart and feeding on humans makes him strong as well, this guy’s seriously dangerous.

 

Elena Gilbert: She is the object of vampire affections in this story. As things kick off Elena and her brother, Jeremy, are being raised by their aunt after their parents died in a car accident. The pair of them are both handling things in a pretty emo fashion, but at least she’s not taking copious drugs and picking fights with guys at school. She is however complaining to her (vampire) diary that she’s totally emotionally stunted. Well, she was until Stefan came along. She feels like she can open up and relate to Stefan. Things are complicated of course by the fact that he is a vampire, and she quickly grows tired of all the secret keeping and moral peril.

 

Bonnie Bennett: This is the half-character of importance I mentioned before. Bonnie is somehow the best friend of every teenage girl in Mystic Falls, despite rarely interacting with them in a typical best friend fashion. It turns out that Bonnie’s a witch. Don’t mistake that for a spoiler, her first conversation brings up the possibility that she’s a witch and almost every single scene or exchange of dialogue with her in it somehow pertains to the fact that she’s a witch. This bothers me mostly because the fact that she is a witch has yet to impact the story in any meaningful way, but she just keeps bringing it up and talking about it incessantly. I strongly suspect that it is a rule of witches in this continuity that if you are a witch and you don’t talk about the fact that you’re a witch once every fifteen minutes you will spontaneously combust. If that IS the case, I hope Damon finds an excuse to muzzle her.

 

Bonnie seems nice enough, maybe I will hate her less if/when she finally gets an actual storyline.

Alright already, Bonnie, I get it, you're a witch! Did you have to ruin my pillow to prove the point?

 

I think that does it for my primer on this wacky world of Vampires (or Wampires if you have a Russian accent or a deep appreciation for alliteration). I figure examining a supernatural romantic teen drama is a good way for me to spend the week of Valentine’s Day. After that, you may continue to see some periodical and unconventional updates on the subject.

 

All you happy relationship people enjoy tomorrow. Me? I’ll be celebrating Vampentine’s Day.