The recent EW cover series for The Vampire Diaries really got me thinking. The magazine covers look like they could have been lifted from romance novels. And while considering just how much I adore this television series, it occurred to me that these fantastic shots of Elena, Stefan and Damon aren’t the only thing that this television show has in common with a good romance novel. So, today I am going to break down exactly why all romance fans should check out The CW’s The Vampire Diaries.
Okay, first let me set the stage. It’s the Civil War-era in Mystic Falls, VA, and Stefan and Damon — aka the two next-to-naked men on the EW cover — are brothers who have just been turned into vampires by the beautiful, duplicitous vamp named Katherine (think Scarlet O’Hara, but with less remorse). Fast forward to present day Mystic Falls, where Stefan has returned to get to know orphaned high school student Elena, who just happens to look exactly like Katherine. They promptly fall in lurv and everything looks like smooth sailing, except for the fact that Stefan is, you know, a vampire. And he’s not telling Elena that she could basically be Katherine’s twin sister. However, those aren’t the only things rocking the S.S. Stefan & Elena 4 Eva. Stefan's big brother, Damon, who is incredibly bad news, has also come back Mystic Falls. He believes can free Katherine from a tomb where she was imprisoned after a complicated chain of events back in the (Civil War-era) day. And if that is not enough drama, the situation gets even more complicated because it's not long before Damon also develops feelings for Elena. Oh, and Elena’s best friend, Bonnie, has just discovered she’s a witch and she hates all vampires. And that's just the set-up that's revealed in the first few episodes.
With so much going on, it would be easy to miss some of the key elements that the reader in me adores:
1) A beautiful innocent heroine
2) A good brother and a bad brother (who both happen to be super dreamy) (and super conflicted, “Oh, Elena”, “Oh, Katherine”)
3) An evil lady vampire, who looks just like the beautiful and innocent heroine leading to …
4) High jinks! Switcheroos! Occasional episodes where everyone is in period costumes!
5) Vampires, witches and more paranormal adventure than you can shake a stick at.
6) Because Elena and co. all still in their teens, there’s a boatload of high school drama.
In one fell swoop, the delicious, if convoluted, story lines speak to romance readers, paranormal enthusiasts and YA fans. And on top of all of that, the writing is simply fantastic.
There are moments that will absolutely resonate with anyone who has ever been seventeen and in love, like when Elena says, “We met and we talked and it was epic. But the sun came up and reality set in.”
However, there are other exchanges that just make you want to die laughing, like when two secondary characters discuss how they evaded a near-death experience:
“I’m sorry I stabbed you. It was the only thing I could think of to get you out of there."
“Oh yeah? Not ‘Oh, hey, Caroline, I’m worried about what might happen this evening, so maybe you should just go home and watch Dancing with the Stars’?"
When I tune in each week I expect to be surprised and delighted by both the scare factor and the laugh factor that TVD delivers in spades. And if you’re anything like me, it’s a show that will definitely have you yelling at the TV screen.
In total, it’s pure unadulterated joy. Spending an hour with these characters is just as enjoyable as reading a book, albeit one that I’m reading in hour long segments ...
But do yourself a favor and don’t set your DVR to record this week’s episode just yet. Instead, go back to season one, so that you can enjoy every fantastic, delicious moment as the story unravels.
You can watch The Vampire Diaries on Thursdays on the CW at 8/7 central. And be sure to check out RT's Everything Romance Page and Everything Young Adult Page to learn more about two of Whitney's favorite genres!