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The Vampire Diaries - Pilot / Night of the Comet


Yep, 2008 brought us Twilight. 2009 brought us a television equivalent in The Vampire Diaries. The family wanted a type of horror show that wasn't altogether salacious in the vein of True Blood or Scream Queens so I am biting the bullet.

Two brothers: Damon (Ian Somerhalder), the bad boy human-feeding bloodsucker who loves to prey on the living, while Stefan (Paul Wesley), aching, soft-hearted good guy hunts small animals for his sustenance, vowing to not take blood from those around him.

Elena (Nina Dobrev) favors a woman named Katherine that seemed to come between the brothers. Katherine broke Stefan’s heart, and Damon loves to torment him about it. Stefan and Elena both seem to have lost their parents, although she has no idea he’s been alive for quite a long time (a diary with Katherine’s picture dates back to 1864).

Elena has a fifteen year old brother, Jeremy (Steven R McQueen), dealing pills and smoking pot, in love with older senior, Vicki (Kayla Ewell). Vicki takes pills from him and is responsible for taking his virginity. But Vicki has the hots for douche, Tyler (Michael Trevino), while Jeremy tries as he might to win her heart.

Bonnie (Kat Graham) seems to have this ability to touch the hands of others and sense trouble/danger on the horizon…call it clairvoyance or just a keen feeling of sudden awareness. Bonnie is Elena’s buddy…she’s comic relief and makes little asides about “hot guys”.

The other gal high school buddy of Bonnie and Elena is blond lovely, Caroline (Candice King). Caroline throws herself at guys, seemingly sexually willing. Damon takes a bite from Vicki while also feeding from various young adults in the community of Mystic Falls. He eyes Caroline who is denied by Stefan (it is all Elena for him), and as “Night of the Comet” concludes Damon sinks his teeth into her. Oh, but Caroline is totally into Damon.

 Damon can’t help but take advantage of a situation where Elena comes to Stefan’s house to visit him, filling her head with “he’s on the rebound after a breakup”. That’s what Damon does. He infiltrates Stefan’s life, attempting to ruin his efforts for normalcy, wanting him to embrace the vampire that kills for blood. Stefan, on the other hand, wants love and to spend time with Elena absent the horrors of taking lives. This is the conflict.

Jeremy and Tyler are always at odds. Jeremy is the subject of scrutiny due to his addictions and dealing, ditching a lot of school and not taking his aunt (Sara Canning) seriously. Jeremy so wants Vicki but she simply has no interest. Tyler doesn't even visit Vicki when she recovers from Damon's attack on her. Damon dangles Vicki like a carrot for Stefan, continuing to fight against his urges, concluding on top of a building during the night of the comet. A lot of alternating secondary character threads tied to the vampire brothers. 

The pilot introduces all of these characters but its Edward/Bella romance of vampire Stefan and human beauty Elena is at the heart of it, with them all googly-eyed and smitten with each other. They conclude "Night of the Comet" embracing in a long kiss. It all builds to this as the two walk and talk, getting to know each other especially during a party in the Pilot. This party night is when Damon lurking in the shadows fed from Vicki. Jeremy would continue to "follow Vicki around like a puppy" but Tyler is the one she is all in for.

Vicki's brother, Matt (Zach Roerig), dated Elena. Lifelong friends, they decided to try a high school relationship. Then her parents drove off a bridge, her in the backseat, and perished. Elena took a step back to find out her priorities and time distant from romance. Missing passion is ignited when Stefan arrives. Meanwhile Elena and Jeremy's aunt tries to adult parent the best she can. She's a witty delight, a cool character trying her best with their teacher taking her to task for Jeremy's behavior.

Damon decides to allow Vicki to live and has her forget all about her vampire attack. Stefan convinces him that allowing her to tell others about their bloodsucking ways would have him staked and ended, along with the brotherly strife hurting him. Damon is playing games...and enjoying every minute of it. While Wesley is the affectionate heartthrob, with all his diary journals detailing his thoughts and feelings (the same as Elena), Somerhalder has all the fun as the show-offy, no-good, cocky punk, just emerging in the picture with seemingly no other reason but to cause shit and gleefully rub his brother's face in it.

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