Shows You Should Be Watching: Vampire Diaries Edition

The Vampire Diaries is a show you should be watching. (Warning: spoilers ahead. Which are hard to avoid including on a review for a show that is currently airing its 6rh Season.)
The original summary of The Vampire Diaries released by The CW explains what the show is about better than I ever could; Four months after the tragic car accident that killed their parents, 17-year-old Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev, “DeGrassi: The Next Generation”) and her 15-year-old brother, Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen, “Everwood”) are still trying to cope with their grief and move on with their lives.  Elena has always been the star student; beautiful, popular and involved with school and friends, but now she finds herself struggling to hide her sadness from the world.  As the school year begins, Elena and her friends are fascinated by a handsome and mysterious new student, Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley, “Army Wives”). Stefan and Elena are immediately drawn to one another, and Elena has no way of knowing that Stefan is a centuries-old vampire, struggling to live peacefully among humans, while his brother Damon (Ian Somerhalder, “Lost”) is the embodiment of vampire violence and brutality.  Now these two vampire brothers ? one good, one evil ? are at war for Elena’s soul and for the souls of her friends, family and all the residents of the small town of Mystic Falls, Virginia.

Now before Fall 2009 when TVD premiered I was not into the idea of Twilight-esque stories and the whole vampire craze. I just didn’t see the appeal. The only things I knew about vampires then was what the story of Dracula stated. I only decided to watch Vampire Diaries because I watched Nina Dobrev on DeGrassi: The Next Generation and the description of the show was very intriguing.

Once I watched the show for the first time I was sucked in and couldn’t wait until the next episode. There are just so many elements of the show that make it great to watch but the main 3 in my opinion are; character development, story and relationships.

The character development on The Vampire Diaries is one of the best parts of the show. Two of the characters who have gone through the most noticeable changes since the start of the show are Caroline Forbes and Tyler Lockwood. Before being turned into a vampire Caroline was a spoiled self-entitled brat most of the time and now her personality is completely unrecognizable as she is caring, protective of her friends and doesn’t take crap from anyone. Now with Tyler before he triggered his werewolf gene he was a selfish, arrogant bully but over the seasons since, he has learned to tone down his temper and tries to think before he acts.

Another thing The Vampire Diaries does that is great for character development is flashbacks that explain a characters’ past more thoroughly. Even full episodes dedicated to flashbacks are very interesting to watch and they still manage to keep the plot in the present going.

The second best part of the show is the story arcs. Every season has an over-arching story that usually comes to an explosive conclusion. Season 1 was basically getting to know the Salvatore brothers, learning how Mystic Falls acts towards supernatural beings and being prepared for the arrival of Katerina Petrova. Season 2 was all about preparing for the arrival of Klaus and discovering the Sun and the Moon curse. Season 3 was about The Originals and how they have shaped the vampire world over a 1,000 years. Season 4 was about Elena becoming a vampire. the Five Hunters and meeting the first immortal, Silas. Season 5 was about the Travelers’ and the destruction of the other side.

Finally the third best part of the show is the relationships. The writers are very good at making you care for couples that you wouldn’t think you would. From the beginning I was very fond of Stefan and Elena together and got frustrated with all the scenes they made that hinted at Damon and Elena falling in love. Now that Elena is no longer with either of them I still prefer her with Stefan but can still appreciate her relationship with Damon. Some of my other favorite couples are Bonnie and Jeremy, Caroline and Tyler and Alaric and Jenna.

Although the current season isn’t as great as Seasons 1-3 it is beginning to hit its stride again for the first time since The Originals were spun-off into their own show and left The Vampire Diaries. I hope we get a few more good seasons out of the show before it ends though. I could go on and on about this show but I will just leave you with check out the show and I bet you won’t regret it.

Places to watch it: Seasons 1-5 are on Netflix, current Season 6 episodes are on Hulu Plus and new episodes air Thursdays at 8 on The CW.