This year, “The Vampire Diaries” grows up. Most of its teen characters have graduated from high school. “The Originals “have left Mystic Falls for their own show. The sex is steamier. The storylines are even darker. At its core, it’s still the story of a girl who longs for a normal and the two vampire brothers who love her but now there is no chance that anything will ever be normal again.
Executive producer Caroline Dries told xfinityTV five things you need to know about ‘The Vampire Diaries.”
1. Delena Fans, This Is Your Year. Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Elena (Nina Dobrev) are together at last. There is no sire bond or mitigating circumstances. Within the first couple minutes of the premiere you see them getting very steamy together. But on this show, happy doesn’t mean happily ever after. The duo face an immediate, realistic obstacle when Elena leaves for college. But by the end of the episode, they have far bigger and more supernatural problems. Damon’s urge to protect Elena may have a negative impact on their relationship. Elena’s desire to have a typical college life means partying with human boys. In fact, during Elena’s first week at college she meets someone who turns out to have a surprising connection to someone from her past. Says Dries, “The girls go to college and interesting things happen there that make you wonder what is going on here? So that’s going to be a whole new world that we get to on the show. But it’s cool. It’s just fun to see Elena be normal and do normal things that 18 and 19 year olds do.”
2. But Don’t Count Stefan Out Yet. Last season ended with Silas trapping Stefan (Paul Wesley) under the water. His life has been a watery hell ever since. Says Dries, “For Stefan, could there be any worse place to spend your summer vacation? As a vampire, you can kind of die by drowning so he’s drowning, dying and reviving over and over.” Though they are broken up, Elena senses that something is wrong with him. In the premiere, it’s his thoughts of Damon and his love for Elena that inspire him to keep going. “Stefan actually has a really moving, heartbreaking story in the first episode, despite being confined to that space.”
3. Silas Is Even Worse Than You Imagined. With Stefan away, his doppelganger Silas will play. “Silas is like, hey, I’m going to go ahead and take advantage of the fact that Stefan isn’t here so he kind of wreaks havoc and it spitballs and becomes a big part of his story in the early half of the season.” This will not be a storyline about everyone wondering why Stefan is acting so strange while Silas secretly plots. By the end of the premiere, he will have done something horrifying and shocking that will impact the entire town of Mystic Falls. His resemblance to Stefan is more than just a bizarre coincidence. This season, “We get to learn more about the doppelganger mythology. It’s really weird. ‘Why does that person look exactly like me?’ We understand why Elena’s Elena. We understand why Stefan’s Stefan.”
4. Katherine Is Not a Fan of Being Human. Katherine was the surprise recipient of last season’s cure for vampirism. She is not enjoying her new life as a human. Dries says that the writers opted to make her the recipient of the cure because, “She is the ultimate vampire. So manipulative, such a good vampire. So to be human, she’s the worst human. It’s been very fun to write that character because she’s so proud but she has no [power] to back it up.” Katherine will turn to an old enemy for help with a frightening new one. Her desperate actions will hurt another character.
5. Jeremy and Matt Are No Longer Just Sidekicks. Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) and Matt (Zach Roerig) have been largely relegated to the roles of little brother and loyal best friend, respectively. This season that changes. Jeremy returned from the dead in the finale. Now he has an additional role: He is the only person who can communicate with Bonnie now that she has died. “It’s a little awkward when [people have] gone to the memorial service and then you show up and you’re not really dead so we explore the psychological ramifications of coming back.” The students at Mystic Falls High do not all welcome Jeremy back with open arms. “Bonnie sacrificed herself. He becomes a very important character because he’s proactive. He was a hunter last season. But he’s also Bonnie’s mouthpiece so he’s trying to deal with her. She’s a ghost so he’s got a lot on his plate.” In the premiere, Bonnie uses Jeremy to hide her fate from her friends. Matt is rewarded for his years of being a sidekick with some scandalous sex that has unexpected consequences. “This season he’s going to take on a new position on the show that gives him a little more of a weighty storyline that he deserves after being on the show for five seasons.”
“The Vampire Diaries” premieres Thursday, Oct. 3 at 8/7c on The CW.